One of Australia’s leading architecture bodies has appointed its first chief executive officer as it seeks to build its voice within the architecture profession, extend its advocacy reach and provide an expanded range of tools to its members.

In its latest announcement, the Association of Consulting Architects (ACA) said Angelina Pillai had been appointed as the organisation’s first chief executive officer.

Throughout a career spanning more than twenty years, Pallai has held leadership positions across a range of public, private and not-for-profit sectors.

Recent roles include serving as chair of the Business Services Industry Reference Committee at accounting and business advisory firm PwC and as Senior Cultural Strategist for the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners.

Founded in 1987, the ACA provides advocacy as well as advice to members on matters of business and employment which impact architectural firms.

It has branches across all states and its activities across jurisdictions are facilitated by a National Executive Committee.

With membership having doubled over the past five years, it has now appointed a chief executive officer to help drive advocacy activities forward and expand the range of tools it delivers to its members.

ACA National President John Held welcomed the appointment.

“The new role of CEO will help ensure the ACA provides a coordinated, coherent national outlook, while drawing on the diverse yet complementary strengths offered by the ACA branches,” he said.

Pallai herself expressed excitement about the new role.

She said challenges faced by membership organisations are considerable.

“The business of architecture is operating in exciting, yet volatile times as a conduit to our nation’s social and environmental agenda,” Pallai said.

“The ACA’s charter to continue that agenda through support, leadership, advocacy and vibrant discussion is what I am particularly energised by and I am looking forward to working with a committed team of professionals towards this important mission.”

“Competition is rife in keeping membership associations thriving and agile in this world of disruption.”

“Disintermediation is a reality to be reckoned with, so membership associations need to be vigilant about listening to and supporting their members through robust content, standards of practice and the point of reference for their members… Otherwise, someone else will.”