Coffs Coast Council

Passionate about building community

IF life experience counts for anything, then Craig Milburn should do well in Coffs Harbour.

On September 8 - only days out from the council election - the 46-year-old starts his new job as the city council's corporate business director, replacing the sacked Kyme Lavelle.

Not surprisingly, Mr Milburn said he wouldn't comment on Mr Lavelle's departure.

“My job is to come in here and lead the (corporate business) division. We have a future to build,” he said.

Hailing from Tasmania, Mr Milburn began his working life as a plumber before moving into youth work and community development in his home state, as well as in Victoria and remote Central Australia.

He entered local government at Port Macquarie in 1995 as that council's community projects officer, followed by a stint with Wollongong council from 1998 to 2001 as community development assistant manager. Then, it was back to Port Macquarie council as community services manager. He would later be the acting director of community and corporate services, ahead of his appointment three years ago as community development director.

Mr Milburn has spent a considerable chunk of the past six years working on the controversial cultural and entertainment centre known as the Glasshouse. In February, the State Government sacked Port Macquarie-Hastings Council over it's handling of the project.

Mr Milburn, who remains the project director until he finishes with the council next Friday, said the project was 'providing a community asset', which the community had been asking for since the 1980s.

He revealed he was disappointed the council had been dismissed.

“My job is to get on and deliver the project. In the end, that project will be delivered and opened for the community.

“It's a piece of valuable infrastructure and a regional asset,” he said

Mr Milburn said he was excited about his new position with Coffs Harbour City Council, and he'd applied for it because he saw it as 'a really good career opportunity'.

“And I absolutely love the coast,' he said.

Coffs Harbour City Council has a good reputation, it's a new challenge.”

Mr Milburn plays hockey and also enjoys jogging, reading and listening to music.

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