1 April 2020

Tributes to former Bega Valley GM David Jesson

| Genevieve Jacobs
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Bega Valley

Former Bega Valley general manager David Jesson spent many years at the helm in Council. Photo: File.

The Bega Valley Shire Councillors and staff say they are saddened by news of former General Manager David Jesson’s untimely death.

‘DJ’ or ‘Jesso’ as he was affectionally known by many, had an extensive Local Government career in both Victoria and NSW after he was the youngest CEO ever to be appointed in Victoria when he took the reins of Prahan City Council.

Mr Jesson began at Bega Valley Shire Council in the early 1990’s before being appointed General Manager in 1993 and leading Council through some tough and difficult times over the ensuing 14 years before his retirement.

He was induced out of retirement in 2008 to become the administrator at Shellharbour after that Council had been removed and since returning to the Valley was a significant contributor to the community debate, especially around governance matters.

In 2012, Mr Jesson stood for Council, calling for greater transparency on rebuilding the Bega Town Hall and Civic Centre, along with plans for the redevelopment of Merimbula airport.

He continued to be strongly interested in Local Government matters and as recently as late last year engaged vigorously in the debate over special rate variations to fund the Shire’s swimming pools.

Responding to the news, Bega Valley Shire Council Mayor Kristy McBain said Mr Jesson leaves a strong legacy in the Bega Valley.

“It was through his vision and contribution to driving this Council forward that the Yellow Pinch water pipeline and village sewer projects came to fruition,” Cr McBain said.

“He loved the Bega Valley and always made contributions to Council to assist in its governance processes and made a point of contacting Councillors when he thought he could assist them in some way – I was the beneficiary of his knowledge, as were many of my colleagues.

“David will be a missed figure in the Council Chambers and our deepest sympathies go to his wife Susan and family.”

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