SAWIA Chief Executive announces transition to retirement

Departing SAWIA Chief Executive Brian Smedley. Image SAWIA

Chief Executive of the South Australian Wine Industry Association (SAWIA) Brian Smedley has submitted his resignation as he transitions towards retirement in mid-2023, SAWIA President Kirsty Balnaves advised SAWIA members last week.

The Board aims to commence recruitment shortly and appoint a new Chief Executive within three months. This will enable a handover period with the outgoing Chief Executive to ensure a continuation of activity and actions that SAWIA is renowned for.

“Brian Smedley will leave an unprecedented legacy with the association and the wine industry and has the respect of the SAWIA Board, SAWIA members and wine industry bodies from all sectors – regional, state and federal,” Kirsty Balnaves said.

Brian commenced employment with the association in 1996 as the Business Services Manager and developed SAWIA’s industrial relations and work health and safety services for members. This has long been recognised as SAWIA’s number one service offering by members.

In 2008, Brian was appointed Chief Executive and has delivered strong association governance and overseen solid financial performance and membership growth.

Brian has been the advocate for the South Australia wine industry over the past 15 years, engaging with government representatives and stakeholders on many issues impacting wine.

“I have very much enjoyed this chapter of my working life with SAWIA. It has been challenging and demanding, but overall, it has been most rewarding to represent the wine industry and to actively promote our state’s unique offerings and provide valuable services to members,” Smedley said.

“I am proud of what SAWIA has achieved and honoured to have worked with the SAWIA Executive Committee, members and a very dedicated group of staff.”


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