PAUL Scurrah, formerly CEO of Virgin Australia and previously DP World Australia, was appointed managing director and CEO of Pacific National.

Mr Scurrah is due to take up the role on 19 April. Mr Scurrah joins Pacific National with after holding roles across the rail, port and aviation sectors, most recently as managing director and CEO of Virgin Australia.

Other significant roles include his time as CEO of Queensland Rail, executive vice-president and commercial and marketing officer at Aurizon and managing director and CEO of DP World Australia.

Mr Scurrah joined Virgin Australia in 2019 after five years at DPWA. He announced his departure from the airline last year after the COVID-19 pandemic savaged the aviation industry, hurling Virgin Australia into administration.

Pacific National’s current CEO Dean Dalla Valle announced in January his decision to retire from full-time executive work and will take on an advisory role after Mr Scurrah’s commencement to ensure a smooth transition.

Pacific National chairman Russell Smith said Mr Scurrah’s long history as a senior transport executive in Australia, and repeat experience as a CEO positions him well to take on the

“Paul’s long history as a senior transport executive in Australia, and repeat experience as a CEO, positions him perfectly to take on the leadership of Pacific National,” Mr Smith said.

“Paul brings with him a wealth of executive, commercial and stakeholder experience which covers all areas of Pacific National’s business.”

Mr Smith thanked Mr Dalla Valle for his work in the CEO role, which he’s occupied since 2017.

“Dean has generated significant momentum, has developed a strong senior management team and will leave Pacific National in good shape, having most recently guided the organisation safely through the material challenges of COVID. We wish him well for his retirement,” Mr Smith said.

Also, Pacific National announced the appointment of Mike Cory as president and chief operating officer, also expected to start in the second half of April.

Mr Cory is joining Pacific National after a 38-year career in rail operations, from his start in 1981 as a diesel shop labourer in Winnipeg, Canada to his most recent role as chief operating officer and executive vice-president of the North American Class 1 railroad, Canadian National. In that role, he was responsible for the operations of the entire railroad, covering more than 30,000 kilometres of track in 10 provinces and 35 states over two countries, with 23,000 employees transporting more than C$250 billion worth of goods annually.

“Mike’s strong leadership, passion for railroading and operational expertise will be invaluable to Pacific National and to the Australian rail industry,” Mr Smith said.