THE new chief executive of Toowoomba and Surat Basin Enterprise (TSBE) has resigned after just five months in the job, telling the Caller his sudden departure was “a bit of a shock”.

The resignation of Greg Bowden, who commenced in the role of TSBE’s CEO in April this year, was announced in a statement this evening by the organisation’s chairman, John McVeigh.

“Our CEO, Greg Bowden, has resigned as CEO of TSBE and has left the organisation,” McVeigh said.

“The TSBE Board and I want to take the opportunity to thank Greg for his time at TSBE, and advise you of the steps we are taking to ensure a smooth transition to new leadership.”

Former TSBE CEO Ali Davenport, outgoing CEO Greg Bowden and TSBE chairman John McVeigh. IMAGE: Supplied

No further official information was provided about what prompted Bowden’s sudden departure, but in a short phone call with the Caller Bowen praised the region’s economic outlook.

“It’s a bit of shock but it’s been a privilege to lead TSBE,” Bowden said.

“I was saying at a function only last week that Toowoomba is a great region with a very exciting future, especially in the lead-up to the 2032 Olympics Games.

“I’m not going to comment further.”

As recently as July, Bowden had outlined his vision for TSBE in a sit down interview with the Caller and addressed some of the ongoing criticisms of the region’s economic development group.

“I said that I would become a regional voice and a regional advocate for industry and economic growth in the region,” Bowden told the Caller.

“So that’s something I’ve chatted to the board already about – how much do you want me to be out there, and I’m talking about external markets.”

Bowden was previously executive manager of Advance Rockhampton following 15 years working as a strategy and economic development executive in the Brisbane City Council Lord Mayor’s office.

He had replaced longstanding TSBE CEO Ali Davenport following her departure in April.

Interim TSBE chief executive April Cavanagh. IMAGE: Supplied

April Cavanagh, a non-executive board director of TSBE since 2018 who was previously the national head of agribusiness at Suncorp Bank, automatically becomes TSBE’s CEO and will hold the position for the next six months, McVeigh’s statement said.

“April will work with the board and the TSBE team to continue to fulfil our strategic objectives and deliver value to you – our members. We are confident that our collective dedication and expertise will continue to drive growth and opportunity for our members and our region,”

“We appreciate your trust and partnership with us, and we want to assure you that we are dedicated to maintaining the high standards you expect from TSBE.  If you have any immediate questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to get in touch.”

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