Digital champion departs Coast development group

AS REGIONAL Development Australia Sunshine Coast farewells CEO Russell Mason, who takes up his post as Suncare Community Services CEO this month, the business community has paid tribute to a "great collaborator" and "team player".

Under Mr Mason's leadership RDA Sunshine Coast was a strong supporter of innovation in the region, supporting events such as Startup Weekend Sunshine Coast, TedxNoosa, the annual Business Excellence Awards and several Chambers of Commerce-led events.

Sunshine Coast Chambers Alliance president Michael Shadforth said Mr Mason was "fantastic in that digital space and really made a huge contribution".

"He really grasped the fact that the Sunshine Coast is poised to be a great location for the digital arena," he said.

A paper Mr Mason prepared on digital work hubs had "ignited the conversation on the Coast about the digital economy", Mr Shadforth said.

"He also really drove the Google awards that we won and he will be remembered for being the catalyst for many of those great ideas."

Sunshine Coast Council's Michael Whereat said Mr Mason's enthusiasm, passion and drive were infectious.

"If it's got digital and technology near it, he's right there," he said.

Mr Mason was instrumental in developing the Regional Economic Development Strategy with the council, Mr Whereat said.

Mr Mason took up his post with the RDA in 2009.

"I would like to thank the RDA SC committee members for their support and collaboration over the last five years. It has been an exciting and rewarding period of my life and I feel (for) the region," he said.



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