News & Media Releases

Yarra elects new Mayor

14 November 2014

cr-phillip-vlahogiannisCr Phillip Vlahogiannis, a lifelong Richmond resident and independent Councillor for the Melba Ward, is Yarra's new Mayor.

Cr Vlahogiannis was elected in a 5-3 vote by his Council colleagues.

In his acceptance speech to an audience of about 100 people at Richmond Town Hall on Thursday night, Cr Vlahogiannis said he would fulfill the Mayoral role as a ‘communicator, mediator and a negotiator’.

“As Mayor of the City of Yarra, I offer myself up as chief storyteller of this municipality,” he said

“I seek to learn the stories of its diverse community and to share them far and wide in advocating for its betterment.

“Sharing our stories builds community, facilitates cohesion and eliminates prejudice.”

The son of Greek immigrants who met and married in Richmond in the 1960s, Cr Vlahogiannis said one of his priorities was to reconnect Council with parts of the community that felt disengaged from local government decision making.

“Some might be disengaged because of their busy work or family lives, and there is the disenfranchised who through age, disability or lack of facility in the English language are not participants in the decision making of our municipality and in my role as Mayor, I would like to reconnect with those people,” he said.

Cr Vlahogiannis thanked outgoing Mayor, Cr Jackie Fristacky, for her tenacity and tireless advocacy on behalf of the Yarra community over her past two terms and thanked his fellow Councillors for their support and dedication to representing residents.

“There are various stakeholders that need to be drawn into Council’s decisions, specifically the state and federal governments, and negotiation is a necessary part of that process,” he said.

“A professional background avails me of those negotiation skills, but also a temperament, empathy and an understanding that we need to work together to make sound decisions.

“Ultimately it is about good governance in the best interests of our community.”

To find out more about Cr Vlahogiannis, click here.

Further information
Toby Walker
Coordinator - Communications
9205 5120



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