Board Chair Announcement

7 December 2021

Expression Australia, Australia’s leading Deaf society, has announced the appointment of Demetrio Zema as its new chair. Demetrio has been a member of the Expression Australia board since 2017 and has extensive not for profit, and corporate experience in governance, strategy and business growth and transformation. A lawyer and entrepreneur by day, Demetrio is the founder and director of Law Squared, a leading NewLaw firm working with Australia’s leading disruptive businesses, corporates, venture capital funds, ASX listed entities and multi-national clients.

Being hard of hearing himself, Demetrio has a deep connection, passion and understanding of the work Expression Australia undertakes and the direct positive impact the organisation has each and every single day.

“I am extremely honoured to accept this appointment and I would like to thank the board for their trust and confidence in me for this role. I look forward to working closely with members of our board, Nicky Long our CEO, our Expression Australia team, and the deaf and hard of hearing communities for whom this organisation was established 137 years ago.” Mr Zema said.

“Expression Australia has a long history as a trusted and experienced community organisation. With a new strategic plan launched in July 2021, Expression Australia is uniquely placed to evolve in a post COVID 19 period, Our future is focused on strengthening our connection with our communities to deliver access to information, service coordination and service delivery through our broader range of services, including expansion of audiology and employment supports .”

Mr Zema acknowledged and recognised his predecessor, Ms Catherine Santo, who has been chair since 2019 and has recently stood down from this role.

“Catherine has led the organisation through an extraordinary time and her leadership has been exemplary. I would like to thank Catherine for her outstanding governance, resilience, commitment, drive and patience over the last couple of years. Her clear direction has been truly inspiring and a model chair navigating so much uncertainty. We are pleased she will remain as a director and continue to offer her insights and .”

Ms Nicky Long, Expression Australia’s CEO congratulated Mr Zema on his appointment as Chair.

“Having joined the organisation as CEO 12 months ago, I have been incredibly supported by Catherine as chair, and by our board. Their high level, professional input has been extremely important for the stability of the organisation during a difficult period arising from COVID-19. I am very much looking forward to continuing to work closely with the board and Demetrio as the chair as we bring our new strategic plan and focus on our future.” Ms Long said.

“Demetrio has extensive experience in the for profit and not for profit sectors, and his business acumen and insights will be invaluable with the new, bold frontiers we are building in consultation with our communities.

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