Aurukun Chief Executive Officer Bernie McCarthy has been awarded a Public Service Medal in recognition of his service and leadership to local government over 47 years.
Aurukun Shire Council Mayor Dereck Walpo congratulated Mr McCarthy on working tirelessly to improve the social and economic outlook of Aurukun during his four years as CEO.
-“During the term of Bernie’s employment at Aurukun, he has competently and strategically implemented not just our Corporate Plan, but ensured our alliances with external partners remains positive and productive to return civil cohesiveness and community pride,” he said.
“A number of major capital works have been undertaken to improve the social and economic outlook of Aurukun including reticulated water and waste management infrastructure, improvement of the road network, the acquisition and refurbishment of Wuungkam Lodge and its restaurant, refurbishment of our Indigenous Knowledge Centre and Administration Centre, and the acquisition of commercial premises in Cairns.
“He successfully lobbied for the 4G network which has allowed small business operations to improve, facilitated online education studies and enabled our community to be better connected with the outside world.
“Bernie has overseen the implementation of a community safety strategy which included CCTV, an audit of street lighting and employee housing improvements.
“He is a strong advocate for communicating positive messages about the community to residents and external stakeholders which has improved community pride in Aurukun.
“The successful completion of these projects and Bernie’s advocacy for Aurukun in association with other departments and stakeholders has assisted in enhancing the quality of lifestyle for our residents, helped in settling community unrest and improved interaction of families and clan groups.
“There is constructive cooperation with all State and Federal agencies thanks to Bernie’s determination for a positive working relationship that extends to the community’s funded stakeholders and non-government organisations.”
Mr McCarthy has worked in the local government sector in Victoria and the Northern Territory serving in many communities disadvantaged by their remoteness and lack of infrastructure.
He was CEO and Director of Corporate Services at the Torres Shire Council for six and a half years where he managed the $10 million reconstruction of the airport and the waterfront beautification of Thursday Island.
Other roles include Tungamah Shire Secretary for more than 10 years, over four years at Yulara Town Council Ayers Rock Resort, Nguiu Community Government Council CEO for more than three years, Mornington Island Deputy CEO for three years, Borough of Queenscliffe Town Clerk and Principal Advisor at the Queensland Department of Local Government.