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'I need major surgery': Council boss explains sudden retirement

Byron Shire Council general manager Ken Gainger.
Byron Shire Council general manager Ken Gainger.

BYRON Shire Council's general manager, Ken Gainger, sent this letter to our sister paper, the Byron Shire News:

I recently announced my retirement from the position of General Manager with Byron Council to spend more time with my family and address some serious health issues that I have been confronted with over the past 12 months.

I have thoroughly enjoyed my five years at Byron Council and have had the privilege to work with a group of committed and highly professional staff and many equally committed and caring Councillors. Council is indeed in excellent hands.

As to the reason for the timing of my retirement with three years still to go on my contract - I need major surgery in the New Year which will take a recovery period of six months. My doctors pretty much made this decision for me.

I would like to acknowledge the many well-wishers who have contacted me over the past couple of weeks. The response has been overwhelming and I am most grateful. Thank you.

As a Byron Council ratepayer of 16 years, when I accepted this job I was well aware that this community is articulate, feisty and critical, and as a GM of 25 years I have relished the opportunity to work closely with many community members and groups. Together we have resolved many long-standing legacy issues.

It is invigorating to see local media giving such a high profile to Council affairs - a clear sign of an engaged community

Ken Gainger, General Manager.


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