TWO eastern region local government key players were recognised in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours.
City of Swan former chief executive Mike Foley and Shire of Mundaring former president David Lavell both received Order of Australia (OAM) medals for service to local government and their communities.
Mr Foley first joined the City of Swan as an engineer in 1981, sticking out the next 39 years in various roles, the last 15 of those as the chief executive until his retirement in September 2020.
He led the largest metropolitan local government in WA during a time of exponential urban growth and development with 760 staff under his leadership.
“It was an interesting place to work because it was a growth local government and there was always lots of development and government projects to be involved in,” he said.
He also headed or was a member of several local government associated organisations, but said his most rewarding achievements came while working with the Eastern Metropolitan Regional Council and Outer Metropolitan Growth Council.
“It was the camaraderie you got working with other people in the industry,” he said.
“Some were about assisting each other to lobby for federal and state funding for various projects and others were trying to change the system for the way grants may have been allocated to councils,” he said.
He said receiving the OAM and being recognised nationally for his life’s work was a very humbling experience.
Another local government changemaker, former Mundaring councillor David Lavell of Darlington, also received an OAM for his services to the community of Mundaring.
Mr Lavell served on council between 2001 and 2009, and 2013 to 2021.
He was the president from 2015 to 2017, and like Mr Foley, also played a part on the Eastern Metropolitan Regional Council, of which Swan and Mundaring are two of five members councils.
In his community, he served as the founding member and president of the Darlington Club and remains active in many community associations.
Both have received recognition by the Western Australian Local Government Association, Mr Foley with a 2012 Eminent Service Award and Mr Lavell with a 2017 Merit Award.
By Claire Ottaviano