Thank You Mayor Elvie and Councillors

Celebrating four years of leadership

As Cherbourg Aboriginal Shire Council, we stand together to recognise and honour the dedication, leadership, and heartfelt service of former Mayor Elvie Sandow, Deputy Mayor Tom Langton, and Councillors Leighton Costello, Bronwyn Murray, and Fred Cobbo who attended their final council meetings last week (13th & 14th March).

Their time in office has been marked by resilience, innovation, and unwavering commitment that has seen our community advance in many ways, especially during the challenging times brought about by COVID-19.

Outgoing Mayor Elvie Sandow “It’s been a good journey, with (the council team) we’ve come a long way, we’ve made some hard decisions, and I can honestly say, none of us had a disagreement, we’ve always respected one another’s decision, we have not always agreed but we always respected and got on with each other, we could ring one another any time of the day or night, and I think that’s the main thing, communication, relationship and working together for the betterment of our community. At the end of the day, we do it for our community, so thank you all”.

Unified Leadership in Challenging Times

This team were elected at a challenging time, our leaders had a big job navigating through the pandemic, ensuring our community’s health and well-being were always at the forefront. Their ability to make tough decisions, while maintaining mutual respect for each other and the needs of the community, keeping open lines of communication and transparency, exemplified their true leadership.

Outgoing Deputy Mayor Tom Langton – “The last four years, it has been great working with everyone here at council, we all worked together, we all had our say, come a long way. It has been enjoyable coming to the council office and working with everyone”.

Empowering Our Future Generations Under their guidance, new business initiatives including the Digital Call Centre and the growing Recycling Program,  laptops for learners, skills and development and education incentive programs have all been a beacon of hope, encouraging our youth to envision a future filled with possibilities. A digital storytelling program has further allowed us to celebrate and share the vibrant stories that make our community unique.

Councilor Fred Cobbo – “Working with (all of) you has been a fantastic opportunity, it has opened my eyes to a lot of stuff around local government and to the support of the team who have showed me a lot over the last four years.  Experiencing so much personal sorry business, I have been supported by everyone, we have worked together as one and supported each other.  Some of the things that I am proud of is the laptop program we have done with our kids, helping our young ones see the big picture and going to university, they want to be doctors and lawyers now and also the digital story telling program that has promoted positive stories from our community”.

A Community of Support and Growth Throughout their term, this council team has been a pillar of support, addressing mental health challenges and fostering a sense of togetherness. Their efforts have not only helped our community navigate through hardships but have also laid the groundwork for continued prosperity and unity.

Councilor Bronwyn Murray – “I have thoroughly enjoyed my term in the last four years.  I was always excited about coming to council meetings, especially if there was something on the agenda that I wanted to discuss.  I believe, we did what we could in the time we had, especially in our capacity during the COVID period, and the way we supported our community, bringing them through those hardship times, particularly in the area of mental health, there were some stresses, but they were overcome quickly.  The work here has been really good, and we can get better and do things at a larger scale”.

Gratitude and Acknowledgment At the outgoing councils final meeting last week, the Mayor and Councillors extended their deep appreciation to CEO Chatur Zala and Council advisor Brett De Chastel for their guidance and support. Their contributions and collaborative spirit have been at the heart of and instrumental in our achievements.

As we bid farewell to our esteemed Mayor and Councillors, we have reflected on their legacy of positivity, unity, and progress. They have set a precedent for leadership that genuinely makes a difference in the lives of those they serve.

Councilor Leighton Costello – “Being a 1st term young councilor, it has opened my eyes, I have learned a lot about governance, local government, a thank you to Mayor Elvie for your guidance and leadership, so many people I have met and things I have learned, which would not have happened if I had not sat at this table.  Just looking at the community, from when I was a child to now, it has changed a lot. I am grateful and thankful that I have had a say in the progress of the community from where we have come from to now”.

CEO Chatur Zala – “On behalf of my council team, it has been an absolute pleasure working with all of you, thank you Mayor Elvie and your team, for your ethical approach, hard work, and strong commitment. The success of this council was teamwork”.

Brett De Chastel (Professional Local Government Advisor)– “The best councils I have ever seen are the ones that bring different perspectives, but they actually get on well, and that’s what you have been able to do and that’s not that common unfortunately in many councils, you should really treasure what you have been able to do here and recognise that you have set a tone for the community as well, of positivity.  Leadership comes from the top, the community sees that, whereas if they see disunity, they stress out and that community becomes unsettled. What you’ve got is a sense of togetherness and by working together that’s created a sense of purpose, and you have felt a sense of belonging, and by getting that all together you’ve created for this community a sense of place, and that’s powerful”.

A New Chapter Looking ahead, we are filled with optimism and excitement for the future of the Cherbourg Aboriginal Shire Council and our newly elected leadership who stand on the shoulders of those he came before. Inspired by the achievements of our outgoing officials, we are committed to continue building on the strong foundation laid for our community.

Thank you, Mayor Elvie Sandow, Deputy Mayor Tom Langton, Councillors Leighton Costello, Bronwyn Murray, and Fred Cobbo, for your remarkable service and dedication. Your legacy will continue to inspire and guide us in the years to come.

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