AHA Victoria reveals new President

11 October, 2018 by Craig Hawtin-Butcher

(Pictured, left to right): David Canny, Peter Burnett AM, Paddy O’Sullivan (CEO)

AHA Victoria and ex-National President Peter Burnett retires, David Canny revealed as new President

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After a dedicated 21 years as President of the Australian Hotels Association, Victoria, Peter Burnett AM officially retired from the position this week.

This week AHA (Vic) held their 170th Annual General Meeting where an election was conducted by the AEC for the position of President. Elected unopposed was Ballarat publican David Canny.

David, a second-generation publican, and his wife Dani operate the Red Lion Hotel in Ballarat and more recently, with their nephew, the Montague Hotel in South Melbourne.

David was first elected a Councillor of AHA in 1998 and in 2008 was elected a member of the Executive Board. In 2013 he was elected as the Victorian delegate to the National Board of the AHA. He was elected as the AHA (Vic) Country Vice President in 2012.

Outgoing president Peter Burnett had also served three terms as AHA National President and many terms as AHA National Senior Vice President.

Peter is an AHA (Vic) and AHA National Life Member, a Nikakis Award winner and an AHA National Hall of Fame member.

In 2015 Peter was appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) “for significant service to the tourism and hospitality sector at the State and National level and as a supporter of charitable and sporting groups”.

Peter’s passion for tourism saw him appointed as a Board Member of Tourism Australia and he is currently serving as a Board member of Visit Victoria.

AHA (Vic) CEO, Paddy O’Sullivan said “Peter Burnett has served the association with distinction. This industry is in great shape and thanks to Peter’s strong leadership we have created a bright future for the tourism and hospitality industry we represent.”

At the AGM dinner following the election David said:

“There is a lot to be excited about and I promise that the Executive, under the guidance of the council, will continue to promote and protect the interests of all hoteliers, our staff, our suppliers and our customers.”

“Earlier this year our Premier spoke about the role hospitality plays in attracting and servicing the events that this great state hosts. It is with enthusiasm and excitement that we talk about the hospitality offering in Victoria.”

“I look forward to working with Paddy O’Sullivan (CEO) and the talented AHA staff – we have often spoken about ‘promote and protect’ – we will continue to base decisions around this principle –

  • We must encourage further investment into pubs and hotels
  • We must ensure regulators are willing to consult a trusted leadership
  • We must make certain our corporate partners have our confidence
  • We must nurture 2nd, 3rd and 4th generation hoteliers, and
  • We must safeguard the corner and the country pub.