Digby Moran with,Jason Mumford and Clayton Donovan.
Digby Moran with,Jason Mumford and Clayton Donovan.

Not just CCM but a good mate

MY NAME is Brent McAlister. I'm the executive director of Sustainable Development at Lismore City Council. I'm a member of the Lismore Business Panel (Jason's Board) and I was Jason's boss. I've never lost one of my managers before.

I'd like to speak briefly of Jason's lasting legacy in Lismore and the things I'll miss. I speak on behalf of the LCC, the Lismore Business Panel, the Lismore Chamber of Commerce/Industry and the wider business community.

Jason as the city centre manager (CCM for short) led the award-winning Lismore business promotion program funded by every business ratepayer in the city. I have often said the CCM role was the second hardest position in council to the GM, because every business owner and operator is your boss.

I was so proud of Jason when he in 2016 was honoured by receiving the Main Street Australia Award for the best Main Street program in Australia, which has become famous for its much loved 'come to the heart' brand. That brand was proudly displayed by business owners as a sign of determined resilience after the recent disastrous floods. That was so satisfying for Jas, having been born in Lismore and being rescued by boat in the 74/76 floods. When I asked Jas and Tina Irish to form the FRU (flood recovery unit), Jas sprung into action with his normal enthusiasm to provide much needed support with insurance and grant claims.

But Jas's number one lasting legacy as CCM is for pioneering and skilfully marketing the regionally iconic annual Eat the Street food festival that started in 2015 and has gone from success to success.

I say to all my staff it's about leaving your legacy - things that carry on after you leave. That's what should motivate you. Josh, Ethan, Judy, Kris, Adam, Georgia, family and friends, you can be very proud of Jas's lasting legacy and that he has left his mark on Lismore. For that on behalf of council, our residents and the business community, I can say we are eternally grateful.

On a personal note, that's not what I will remember Jas for. I'll dearly miss him for his cheeky smile, stylish dressing and his endless enthusiasm.

I'll miss all those ideas. He was an ideas factory. In that, Jas and I were kindred spirits.

Jas and I shared a common bond of being proud fathers. Jas was so proud of his boys. Always mentioning what the boys were up to and often asking about my girls. 'How's Marge or Gloria?' That was so kind and thoughtful. I fondly recall once arranging my oldest daughter to give Jas pole-dancing lessons for his Dancing with the Stars performance.

Finally, I was privileged to call Jas my mate. I was so proud to have supported Jas through the tough times.

Jas was such an encouragement to me personally and other men by bravely being open about his mental health challenges. Jas, I will be eternally grateful for that and I have not only lost my CCM but a good mate.

Thank you, Jas, and I'll dearly miss you.

KIA KAHA (be strong)

A MAJOR tourism award for Lismore's Eat the Street has been dedicated to the event's creator, the late Jason Mumford.

The annual celebration of street food and Lismore's signature event, Eat the Street has won gold at the North Coast Regional Tourism Awards held at Coffs Harbour last week.

Lismore City Council Tourism and Events Manager Mitch Lowe dedicated the award to the event's creator, city centre manager Jason Mumford, who sadly passed away recently.

"Jason's death has been very hard on the staff and we dedicate this award to his memory,” Mr Lowe said.

"Jason had a vision for Eat the Street and helped create what is now one of our most popular events for the city, enjoyed by more than 15,000 people each year. We are honoured to accept the award on his behalf.

"This has been a very sad week for Lismore, but Jason will live on in our memories through the legacy of this wonderful event. He will be sorely missed.”

Leading regional tourism businesses, events and visitor experiences stretching from the Great Lakes region to the Tweed have been recognised at the awards night.

Winners in 13 categories were announced at the ceremony from finalists including local councils, tourism businesses, events, restaurants, wineries and accommodation providers.

More than 200 industry representatives were in attendance to see the induction of nine businesses into the Hall of Fame.

The NSW State Tourism Awards will be announced in Sydney this November.