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Barwon Water will replace its industry-veteran managing director with a Melbourne council chief.
Tracey Slatter will take over from Joe Adamski when his contract expires on 31 December after three decades with Barwon Water.
Mr Adamski worked his way up through a series of executive positions over the years to reach the top job in 2012.
Ms Slatter is City of Port Phillip chief executive officer, a position she earlier held at Colac Otway Shire. She has also had roles with the TAC, Victorian Health Department and G21 Geelong Region Alliance.
Barwon Water chair Jo Plummer said Ms Slatter would “drive major priorities” including climate change, liveability and workplace diversity.
“Tracey is a highly qualified executive with the skills required to lead Barwon Water into a new era of change and opportunity,” Ms Plummer said.
“Joe Adamski leaves a legacy that sets the organisation on a strong business footing and the board wishes him well for the future.”
Ms Plummer declined to reveal whether Mr Adamski reapplied, saying the recruitment process was “confidential“.
But his performance as managing director was “more than satisfactory, meeting performance objectives and targets“, she said.
“Joe has developed and nurtured strong relationships and partnerships with stakeholders, driven increased community engagement, led a successful business consolidation program that has delivered affordable prices for customers and ensured the ongoing financial stability of the organisation.“
Ms Plummer said Ms Slatter lacked water industry experience but had a “proven track record at senior management level“.
“Tracey is a perfect fit for Barwon Water and its commitment to deliver outstanding essential services to the community. Similarly, she has strong leadership qualities and has been acknowledged for building high-performance organisations.“
Water Minister and Bellarine MP Lisa Neville welcomed Ms Slatter’s appointment.
“Her experience and skills will be valuable to the corporation as she plays a lead role in promoting liveability, water service delivery and economic growth in the region.”

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