Corporate Ladder: your weekly guide to executive appointments

South Australia’s premier executive appointments column tracking the movements of those driving the state’s public and private sectors. Plus the latest executive recruitment opportunities.

Sep 26, 2022, updated Sep 26, 2022
Al Jawhari has been appointed Group CEO of advanced manufacturing alliance Stärke-AMG. Photo: supplied

Al Jawhari has been appointed Group CEO of advanced manufacturing alliance Stärke-AMG. Photo: supplied

Peter Piliouras

David Clark

Top pharma job for Peregrine exec

Peregrine Corporation Chief Commercial Officer Peter Piliouras has been appointed CEO of Star Pharmacy Group.

Piliouras has spent the best part of 16 years with Peregrine, joining in 2006 as Company Legal Officer before moving up the ranks to be appointed Chief Operating Officer of OTR in 2014.

He has been Chief Commercial Officer since 2019 and became an Australian Institute of Company Directors Graduate in 2020.

His appointment at Star Pharmacy Group – which operates more than 60 pharmacies across South Australia, New South Wales and Queensland, primarily under the Star Discount Chemist brand – will see him replace David Clark as CEO.

Clark has led the Adelaide-based pharmacy chain since June 2019. He joined after more than nine years as Managing Director of menswear chain Ed Harry and five years as Chief Operating Officer at Harris Scarfe.

Star Pharmacy Group Founders Stan Kontos and Peter Gardiakos said Piliouras would bring “fresh energy and a wealth of experience to build on the strong foundations laid by our outgoing CEO”.

Neil Bisset

Richard Bryant

Movements at Metricon

Metricon South Australia has promoted Manager of Building and Operations Neil Bisset to General Manager South Australia, following the departure of Richard Bryant from the role.

Bryant, who established Metricon’s SA operations in 2010, has been appointed CEO at an undisclosed organisation which he says is in an “entirely new industry”.

“I’m leaving the business in a very capable pair of hands,” Bryant said in a statement.

“I started Metricon in SA… 13 years ago. My first employee was Neil Bisset. I cannot think of a more appropriate and knowledgeable person to continue to lead the Metricon team into the future.”

Bisset took over leadership of Metricon SA on Friday.

He has worked in the residential building industry since moving from Scotland to Australia in 1988.

Al Jawhari

Strong appointment at Stärke

New advanced manufacturing alliance Stärke-AMG has appointed experienced executive Al Jawhari Co-Founder and Group CEO.

Jawhari joins Stärke-AMG after three years leading Adelaide lighting accessories manufacturers Lightforce Group as Chief Executive. Prior to that, he was Chief Technology Officer at PwC Food Trust and Beston Global Food Company.

He is also currently Vice President and South Australian Chair of the Australian Arab Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Stärke-AMG Founder and Chair Grant Tinney touted Jawhari’s experience in commercialising “transformative technologies” as well as his “deep understanding of the Defence sector”.

“Al Jawhari’s extensive experience as an Aeronautical/Mechanical engineer combined with his expertise and successes in the Defence sector as a company leader and entrepreneur will be a tremendous asset to our business,” Tinney said in a statement.

Stärke-AMG, based in Gilman, is a new alliance of six vertically integrated advanced manufacturing companies across Australia and the United States.

The companies – QPE Advanced Machining, VPG Innovation, Stärke Tooling, Precise Machining and Manufacturing, McMahon Metal Fabrication and Stärke AMG INC – service a range of industries, including the Defence sector.

Corporate Position: the latest executive employment opportunities

Lutheran Homes Group (LHG), which provides residential aged care, retirement living and home care services for more than 1100 residents, is looking for an Executive Manager People & Culture and an Executive Manager Finance & Governance. Both roles will report directly to the CEO and form a vital part of LHG’s executive leadership team.

The People & Culture role will lead all aspects of the P&C portfolio, including workforce planning, talent acquisition and development, organisational development, performance management and training, while also driving strategies to enable transformational change and reviewing, developing and maintaining policy and compliance requirements. Applications are encouraged from versatile senior people and culture managers with proven experience in workforce planning and transformation, ideally gained within a community or human services related context.

The Finance & Governance role is responsible for leading, developing and managing the full suite of finance and accounting functions at LHG. The successful candidate will be a key financial adviser to the CEO and Board and provide leadership in planning, directing and administering all financial activities of the organisation including statutory reporting and compliance, tax, audit and management reporting. Applications are encouraged from CA/CPA qualified professionals with proven experience in a comparable multi-dimensional role. Exposure to aged care, health, or human services will be an advantage, but applicants from a diverse range of industry settings are also welcome to apply.

Saint Ignatius’ College is seeking applications for a newly created position within the school.  Reporting to the Principal, the new Head of Co-Curricular role will promote ongoing evaluation and development of co-curricular in the areas of Student Formation, Coach Formation, Program Development and Resource Development. This role will also exercise supervision of the Arts and Activities Coordinators and Sport Coordinators at the Junior School and Senior School, and through them, a range of Program Leaders drawn from in and outside the College. Applications are encouraged from suitably qualified and experienced professionals from both within and outside education with a genuine commitment to the holistic development of young people.

Australian Gas Infrastructure Group manages critical gas infrastructure across Australia through its infrastructure businesses that include Australian Gas Networks, Dampier Bunbury Pipeline and Multinet Gas Networks. AGIG is currently looking for a new Head of Group Tax to take responsibility for the complete taxation function of the Group. Reporting to the Chief Financial Officer, the successful candidate will have oversight of a small team and work closely with the accounting and treasury teams across various states. Responsibilities include ensuring the provision of technically accurate, practical, commercial and value adding tax advice on a timely basis; delivering tax compliance and internal and external reporting obligations; management of tax risk management and provision of financial reporting and forecasting information. Applications are invited from appropriately qualified (CA/CPA) tax professionals with corporate tax experience gained either within a large corporate or CA firm and ideally operating in a highly regulated environment. The position could be based in either Adelaide, Melbourne or Perth to attract the right candidate.

Youth-led Adelaide theatre company ActNow Theatre is looking to appoint a number of voluntary Board Members to join the established group of Directors and help steer the organisation into the future. Applications are encouraged from both experienced and emerging governance professionals from a law, finance, governance, risk management, compliance, philanthropy and/or people and culture background. In addition to the above professional backgrounds, applications are also strongly encouraged from First Nations people, people with a lived experience of disability and people from BIPOC or Queer communities.  The successful candidates will be appropriately qualified and experienced professionals demonstrating a commitment to the potential of a values-driven, community-based organisation in an environment of constant change and opportunity. A genuine affinity with the ActNow Theatre vision and values will be essential, as will commercial acumen, warmth and empathy. A medium-term appetite or ambition to be the Chair of this special entity will also be welcomed.

Michael Dimasi

Kapil Gupta

Commercial property pickups

McGees Property Adelaide has appointed Michael Dimasi from Lofty Property Group.

A specialist in valuation and development, Dimasi joins McGees as Executive, Sales and Leasing after spending the last two years with Lofty Property Group as Assistant Development Manager.

Prior to joining Lofty, he was with property valuation and advisory firm M3 Property in Adelaide.

McGees Property said Dimasi will be partnering with Senior Executive, Sales and Leasing Andrew Wilson to bolster the firm’s focus on commercial development.

Meanwhile, Harcourts Adelaide City has appointed Commercial SA’s Kapil Gupta as Commercial Property Manager and Leasing Agent.

Gupta, a former Chef and Owner of Rostrevor restaurant India To You, has been with Commercial SA for the last seven months.

Prior to that, he was a Body Corporate Manager with property management firm Strata Data.

Teresa Santillo

COO step up at Hessel  

Social services provider and training organisation Hessel Group has promoted Teresa Santillo to Chief Operating Officer.

Santillo, who has held senior roles at Families SA, Disability SA, Anglicare SA, Baptist Care SA and the Benevolent Society, has been with Hessel Group since 2019 as General Manager of Allied Health, Behaviour and Support Services.

In 2020, she completed a Master of Business Administration with the Australian Institute of Management.

Santillo’s new executive role gives her oversight of the organisation’s In Home Care, Enhance Training RTO and Hessel Group Training Organisation.

The COO position is a newly created role within Hessel Group.

Christopher Karvountzis

New research centre leader

Flinders University has appointed former Department of Human Services Chief Innovation Officer Christopher Karvountzis as Program Director of Innovation Central Adelaide.

Karvountzis, a public speaker on the dangers of coercive control, has had a long career in the South Australian public sector, holding senior roles with the former Department of Further Education and Department for Communities and Social Inclusion.

He was appointed Chief Innovation Officer at the Department of Human Service in 2018, a role he held for two years before moving on to self-employed work.

Karvountzis’ new role with Innovation Central Adelaide (ICA), located in Tonsley, gives him responsibility for the business development and management of the centre.

The ICA, launched by Flinders University in March this year, aims to foster collaboration between industry and academia to progress digital transformation and advanced manufacturing.

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