Yarra City Council has appointed a new Acting CEO, after Vijaya (VJ) Vaidyanath stepped down as CEO in October 2021.

Yarra City Council’s City Works and Assets Director, Chris Leivers, was appointed Acting CEO at a recent council meeting, commencing the role on 17 December 2021.

Mr Leivers brings a wealth of experience in community services, infrastructure and major projects, as well as nearly 20 years in local government, and understands the vital role council plays in responding to the unique needs of the local community.

In his six years at Yarra, Mr Leivers has been responsible for flagship projects including the transition to electric vehicles across Council’s corporate fleet, the relocation of Council’s depot off the Gas and Fuel site, the delivery of the Edinburgh Gardens one million litre storm water tank, supported by Yarra’s first Integrated Water Management Strategy, the delivery of Yarra’s first Nature Strategy, and the establishment of YarraCityLab to support Yarra’s transition to become a Smart City.

Yarra City Council Mayor, Cr Gabrielle de Vietri, said Mr Leivers’ deep understanding of Yarra and its community made him the ideal choice for the role. 

“Mr Leivers’ considerable local government experience, combined with his understanding of what makes our community so special is part of what makes him so suited to this position,” Mayor de Vietri said. 

“Councillors, in partnership with the community, have set an ambitious vision for Yarra’s future and we are confident Mr Leivers’ strategic approach and collaborative style will deliver exceptional projects and services for the community. 

“Yarra Councillors look forward to working with Mr Leivers to deliver positive outcomes for the Yarra community and continue its strong advocacy agenda.”

Mr Leviers’ focus will continue to be on ensuring Yarra remains vibrant, equitable, connected and sustainable.  

“Yarra is a fantastic place, with amazing parks and natural spaces, a vibrant night-time economy, iconic venues and great facilities. It’s no wonder Yarra is such a popular destination in Melbourne,” Mr Leviers said.

“I’m looking forward to working with Councillors, staff and the community to ensure Yarra remains a great place to live, work, play and visit.”


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