MARK Harvey-Sutton has been appointed chief executive of the Australian Live Exporters Council, replacing Brett Pointing.

According to an ALEC statement, Mr Pointing was stepping down due to “a change in personal circumstances” which required him to return to Queensland.

Mr Pointing had been in the job just three months, having replaced Simon Westaway, the former Jetstar communications guru who faced intense media questioning last year during the Awassi Express scandal.

ALEC chairman Simon Crean indicated he was sorry Mr Pointing was leaving.

“It is with regret that Brett is leaving and I understand that it is a decision not taken lightly. However, personal circumstances change and we understand and support Brett’s decision,” Mr Crean said.

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“Brett joined ALEC in what is a challenging time for the industry. He brought a wealth of experience and in his short time as CEO, he was able to make positive changes that will advance the industry.

“One of those positive changes was the appointment of Mark Harvey-Sutton as his deputy at ALEC. The ALEC Board has now determined to appoint Mark as the new CEO, which will allow for a smooth internal transition to take place over the coming weeks.”

Mr Crean said Mr Harvey-Sutton was shortlisted to fill the ALEC CEO vacancy in 2016 and had been general manager of rural affairs at the National Farmers’ Federation.

He has previously served as acting CEO for the Sheepmeat Council of Australia (now Sheep Producers Australia) as well as working for the Cattle Council of Australia as policy director.

“Mark is a highly regarded advocate for Australian agriculture, with extensive experience in livestock and red meat policy development and industry reform,” Mr Crean said.

Mr Harvey-Sutton has a law degree from James Cook University and was admitted as a lawyer in the ACT Supreme Court in 2010.

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