By now many of you have heard that I will be leaving the Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB) to take some well-deserved time off before exploring other opportunities. This Friday sees my last day as CEO, I’d like to use this moment simply to say thank you.

Thank you for the immense honour of serving this business for the past seven and half years and TEAM Melbourne for their support during my time at MCB.

It has been a privilege to represent our city Melbourne and the state of Victoria on the global stage and showcase the best of our destination to our clients.

More importantly the thing that sets us apart, is our approach to doing business. The industry has been a key component in everything we’ve done, and I’ve felt honoured to be allowed to show the world what we have.

I’d like to thank the global business events industry and clients for supporting us and having the confidence to deliver your events in our destination with many of our partners.

I’d like to thank the MCB Board who have been unwavering in their support throughout my tenure with the Bureau.

As a membership-based Board, they have represented the industry well and ensured we have been given the support and tools to deliver the best results. I have learnt from them and been guided by their expertise. I would like to specially acknowledge Chris Barlow as my Chair, who has been a wonderful supporter over the years. Thank you, it has been my pleasure.

Last but not by no means least, I’d like to thank the exceptional MCB team. No leader can deliver the kinds of results we’ve have without the engine room that goes above and beyond at all times.

This team have made me very proud to be at the helm, and I can assure you - they are passionate, professional and committed in their quest to win business for our city.

I am confident that I leave the MCB well positioned for the future. Julia Swanson will be Acting CEO while the recruitment process begins. Julia has been with MCB almost 9 years. She was the GM of Bidding and Business Development and has been working closely with me on many key projects across the business. This has provided her with broad exposure and understanding of the business. Julia has been a key part of MCB’s Executive team over the years and I’m confident I leave the business in capable hands. It’s business as usual for MCB as we look to deliver some of the best results ever posted - nothing like going out on a high note.

Thank you for your support, friendship and collaboration over the years. I will see you again at some stage, I’m sure.

Karen Bolinger

Karen Bolinger