The board of Master Builders Australia has broken its 127-year-old tradition and hired Denita Wawn as its first female CEO and chose to make the announcement on International Women’s Day held on Wednesday.
Wawn whose appointment takes effect on March 20 will represent the interest of $200 billion building and construction industry and is only the third CEO for the association in 30 years.
“Denita’s qualities, skills and experience as a highly accomplished industry leader and advocate saw her emerge as the successful candidate from the comprehensive recruitment process undertaken by the board,” Master Builders National president Dan Perkins said in a statement.
“The board is confident that Wawn’s leadership will see the implementation of its vision for Master Builders as a new, credible and influential national voice for its more than 32,000 members.
“Denita has impeccable credentials for success including her wealth of experience spearheading game changing advocacy and industrial relations campaigns at the National Farmers Federation (NFF), and the Australian Hotels Association (AHA).
“As CEO of the Brewers Association of Australia and New Zealand, Denita implemented a highly successful reputational change strategy at a national and international level.
“Denita has spent over the past 12 months as general manager operations at Master Builders, giving her a strong foundation to understand the issues impacting on Master Builders and our members.
“The board is excited by Wawn’s leadership and her strong grasp of the factors which drive success in industry associations, and her passionate commitment to standing up for the interests of members.”
Wawn’s appointment comes days after the association’s former CEO Wilhelm Harnisch called it a day after helming the post for the last 15 years.