The Board of Directors of the Association for Alcohol Responsibility and Education (aware.org), a not-for-profit organisation funded by the alcohol industry to reduce the harmful consumption of alcohol, have announced that its CEO, Ingrid Louw, will be stepping down from her position with effect 31 January.
Ingrid Louw. | Source: Supplied.
Louw joined the predecessor to aware.org - the Association for Responsible Alcohol Use (ARA) - in late 2016, and was the driving force behind its evolution to aware.org, which she launched a year later. During her tenure, Louw bridged the gap between industry, government and communities in a meaningful way that delivered direct and tangible outcomes for beneficiaries of aware.org’s targeted, evidence-based interventions.
Aware.org board chairman Gavin Pike expressed appreciation for the leadership provided by Louw during her time as the CEO. “During her tenure, Louw strengthened governance and transformed aware.org into an organisation that all players in the alcohol value-chain could invest in as part of their responsibility to reduce harmful consumption of alcohol in the country.”
Testament to this was that the liquor industry invested more than R450m in funding programme interventions and social norms initiatives to make South Africans aware of the need for socially responsible alcohol consumption to reduce alcohol harm. Pike said that one of the biggest breakthroughs was the adoption of the Industry Code of Communication, a self-regulation framework for alcohol advertising.
Louw said that she is pleased to have contributed to addressing the major problem of alcohol misuse in the country: “The ability to change behaviours with regards to alcohol harm requires a multi-stakeholder, multi-faceted approach which included taking interventions back to the heart of the community and creating opportunities for change that can grow into sustainable impact in the long-term.”
Carmen Mohapi will take over as an interim CEO for aware.org, effective from 14 February. Mohapi has more than 15 years of leadership experience within the South African alcohol industry, serving most recently as a board member and marketing director for Heineken South Africa. Before that, she held several managerial roles at the South African Breweries.