Rob Hankins
Rob Hankins

After almost 14 years at the helm of one of South Australia’s largest retirement living and aged care organisations, Rob Hankins is to retire from the chief executive officer role at ECH next year.

ECH said it was undertaking a national search for a new CEO and Mr Hankins would stay in the role until the Board had selected his replacement to enable an orderly transition in the first half of next year.

Mr Hankins will continue to work in the retirement living and aged care sector as an adviser and consultant.

The chairman of ECH, Dr Tom Stubbs, praised Mr Hankins who has led ECH’s transformation into a leading provider of retirement homes and community-based services.

“Rob Hankins can be truly proud of what he has achieved as our leader since May 2001 and all of us at ECH are truly grateful to Rob,” Dr Stubbs said.

“Under Rob’s leadership, ECH has sharpened its focus on affordability and re-invented itself to better meet the evolving needs of the next generation of retirees. ECH was a good organisation when Rob joined us and he leaves us as a great organisation.”

Having successfully completed the strategic divestment of the organisation’s residential care facilities and set the course for the next stage of ECH’s growth, Mr Hankins said he thought it was the right time to hand over the reins to the next CEO to lead the implementation of the Board’s strategy.

“I am tremendously proud of ECH and all its people and I will miss everyone,” Mr Hankins said.

“Now is the right time to appoint a new CEO who will commit to the next five years or more of our strategic plan. Our management and staff have achieved much over the past decade and are very well-placed to lead in continuing to meet the needs of older people over the next decade.

“ECH can pride itself on its strategic and innovative response to the ever-changing and growing needs of older people in our society. Our retirement villages are unique with more than 1,630 dwellings spread over 98 locations in metropolitan Adelaide, Ardrossan, Victor Harbor and in the Adelaide Hills. Our ‘small cluster’ strategy enables more people to continue to live independently in their local community. Our growing community care services support people with a genuine reablement focus that enables them to live longer in their own home,” Mr Hankins said.

As Australian Ageing Agenda reported in April, ECH moved to dedicate itself exclusively to community-focussed services and independent-living retirement villages with the divestment of all its residential aged care centres in South Australia and the Northern Territory.

The provider said that this change in focus freed up significant funds for investment in “ageing at home” as ECH increased and diversified its community services for older people and refurbishes and expanded its retirement villages.

ECH is a charitable organisation that controls in excess of $400 million worth of retirement and community services assets. It has a workforce of more than 570 staff and volunteers and provides community-based services or independent retirement living homes to more than 8,000 people.

Mr Hankins is a former president and board member of Aged and Community Services Australia. In September he was presented with the Individual Award at ACSA’s national conference.

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