Following an exhaustive national recruitment process, Anna Moeller has been announced as the incoming CEO of AHA|SA – the first woman to take up the role in the organisation’s history.

Moeller, who is currently the state industry body’s deputy CEO and executive director of the industry harm minimisation agency, Gaming Care, will replace current CEO Ian Horne, who is retiring in July after 31 years in the role.

After a 10-week search involving an external recruiter and assessment of more than 80 quality applicants, including locally, interstate and overseas, it emerged the best person for the job was sitting in the office next to Horne.

Moeller is a qualified lawyer, and has been deputy CEO of AHA|SA for the last three years. She has an impressive CV of leadership roles, including at Bendigo Bank, Motor Trade Association of SA/NT and in the Local Government sector.

AHA|SA president David Basheer said Anna has proven to be an outstanding and highly respected member of the team, “providing our membership with significant leadership across liquor, gaming, and harm minimisation, as well as industrial and Government relations.”

“Anna will bring her unique leadership style to the role whilst preserving the values that have made the AHA|SA such a pivotal component of not just the tourism and hospitality sector in South Australia, but the business community in this state,” Basheer concluded.

With the announcement of her appointment, Moeller stated that she looked forward to her continued work with members, in her new capacity as CEO.

“I look forward to continuing to work closely with all our members whether they be our larger operators, accommodation specialists or the backbone of our industry, our significant SME family-based pub sector,” Moeller stated.

“Hotels are a uniquely decentralised employment generator who both reflect and are at the heart of communities across the state.”

Moeller becomes the first female CEO of the organisation in its 153-year history. Women currently make up 62 per cent of South Australia’s hotel workforce. Moeller recently spoke to Australian Hotelier about how far the South Australian pub industry has evolved with its attitudes and opportunities for women, and how the advancement of women in the industry has been a focus of the AHA|SA for decades.

“I am very proud to be the first woman to head up the Association in over 150 years and with the support of the great team we have at the AHA, I look forward to building on Ian Horne’s remarkable legacy.”

Moeller will take up the role on 10 July.

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