F.Y.I.

Barton Deakin opens Brisbane office

Barton Deakin, conservative government relations firm has opened a Brisbane office with former lord mayor Sallyanne Atkinson appointed chairman.

The announcement:

Sallyanne Atkinson to Chair Barton Deakin in Queensland
Brisbane, November 28, 2011: In a clear signal the Queensland business community is preparing for a change in government, Australia’s leading conservative government relations firm, Barton Deakin, has opened a Brisbane office.

Former Lord Mayor, Sallyanne Atkinson, will be chairman of Barton Deakin (Queensland). Managing director will be management consultant Ted O’Brien, Chairman of the LNP Futures Committee.

Atkinson joins fellow Liberal heavyweights Peter Collins (former NSW Liberal minister and Opposition Leader), Grahame Morris (former chief of staff to Prime Minister John Howard) and John Griffin (former chief of staff to Victorian Premier Jeff Kennett) at Barton Deakin. They lead the only national Liberal/National Party-focused corporate advisory firm in Australia.

Barton Deakin has worked with business in the change from Labor to Liberal Governments in Victoria and New South Wales and will now work with Queensland businesses in the lead-up to the State election and beyond.

Barton Deakin QLD Managing Director Ted O’Brien said the Brisbane office would primarily focus on helping local business prepare for a change in State Government, and work more effectively with the Queensland LNP in the long-term.

“In speaking with some of the State’s business leaders, it has become apparent that many want to prepare now for a change in Government,” O’Brien explained. “This demand coupled with our own confidence that Campbell Newman will soon lead our State, led to the decision to open our office and start providing the
professional, business-focussed and experienced advice that so many organisations within the commercial sector are looking for.”

Barton Deakin QLD Chairman Sallyanne Atkinson said the opening of a new Barton Deakin office also provided a “clear statement of confidence in the Coalition”.

“We have an absolute belief in the LNP and its ability to win Government, a view that is clearly shared by our business leaders affected by QLD Government decision-making,” she said. “Ted and I not only have the business credentials to help local organisations work and communicate with the LNP, but deep understanding of how the Coalition operates to help build the most effective working relationships both at State and Federal levels.”

A highly experienced executive with two decades of commercial experience in industry and management consulting, QLD MD O’Brien will manage all clients on matters concerning the Queensland LNP and the Federal Liberal/National Coalition out of Brisbane. Together with Atkinson, O’Brien is the public face of Barton Deakin in Queensland and will provide government relations, strategic and business advice.

In his most recent role at global consulting giant, Accenture, he served as their Director of Growth and Strategy for the Asia Pacific and Emerging Markets. He advised major Australian and international corporations and public sector organisations across multiple industries including the health, telecommunications, primary commodities, food and technology sectors. He heralds from the well-known Queensland industrialist family that ran Defiance Mills, one of state’s great commercial success stories.

O’Brien also has an impeccable history with the Queensland LNP where he currently serves as Chairman of the LNP Futures Committee and as a Regional Executive Officer. He stood as the Liberal Party candidate for Brisbane in the 2007 Federal election. He has experience as Chairman, Director and Adviser of several high profile non-profit and charity organisations.

Barton Deakin QLD Chairman Sallyanne Atkinson is one of the most respected public figures in Queensland and has an extraordinary record of service to the Australian public and business community. She was the elected Lord Mayor of Brisbane from 1985 to 1991 and presided over a period of extensive growth and development for the city. She was the first woman and the first Liberal Party member elected to the Lord Mayoralty.

After her career in representative politics, Atkinson went on to represent Queensland and Australia in a number of roles including as the Australian Trade Commissioner to France, Australia’s representative to the International Chamber of Commerce, representative of the Australian Olympic Committee, Special Representative for the Queensland Government in South East Asia and numerous other roles. She is a director of many companies and her advice is widely sought on business matters.

Barton Deakin’s founder and National Managing Director Peter Collins said both Atkinson and O’Brien brought some of the strongest political and business credentials in the State to the new Queensland office.

”Sallyanne and Ted bring an outstanding mix of capability to Barton Deakin; business-focussed experience and commitment to the LNP that will no doubt be in high demand among organisations that need to start talking to future QLD Ministers and decision-makers now,” he explained. “We are excited to have such seasoned
operators on board.”

Collins also said it was not the first time he and Morris had worked with Atkinson; all three were joint editors of the The Australian Liberal newspaper in the 1970’s, and her move to Barton Deakin “brings the old team back together.”

Source: Barton Deakin press release

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