Lismore City’s newest and youngest mayor is a Southern Cross University graduate who credits his arts degree for the communication and management skills that have proven invaluable across his career.
Mayor Isaac Smith, 42, was popularly-elected last month during local government elections after serving two terms as a councillor.
“Our former Mayor Jenny Dowell was well-respected and worked very hard. I am very excited to be elected to continue the hard work,” said Mayor Smith.
The Southern Cross University alumnus donned his mayoral chains to join graduands and academics in the street procession through the Lismore CBD at the University’s spring graduation ceremonies on September 24, just a fortnight after the election.
“The University’s procession raises awareness in the community that there is a large group of people who are working not just for the betterment of themselves but the betterment of the city, the region and beyond. It was fantastic to be part of it,” Mayor Smith said.
Isaac Smith started a Bachelor of Arts with Honours (majoring in media) at the Lismore campus in 1994, the year Southern Cross University was established.
“Being part of a new institution when I enrolled was enticing and now all these years later we can say the University’s presence in the region is significant,” he said.
Mayor Smith said the degree provided him with a broad education.
“Core arts subjects are an asset, a bedrock, to any career or opportunity in life. The communication and learning skills I gained have kept me in good stead.”
After graduation, he taught media units at Southern Cross University then later ran his own web and media company.
For the past five years he has juggled his council roles with a full-time job as operations manager at HART (Home Assistance and Regional Transport Services Inc) Services which helps aged and disability clients.
“Being a local I am always looking to give back to my community. Communication is the key to being a good manager,” he said.
“I get satisfaction out of helping people make connections to solve problems.”