The four-year assignment of David Crook as Australia's consul general and trade commissioner in Atlanta will end on Monday, Nov. 22, with economic and cultural ties between Australia and the Southeast firmer than ever.
Amanda Hodges will be moving to Atlanta from Milan, Italy, to replace him. Mr. Crook, who also served as the dean of the consular corps here, will be returning to Sydney, Australia, on a new assignment.
Citing the United States' trade surplus with Australia and the new free trade agreement, Mr. Crook told GlobalAtlanta that trade between the two countries is responsible for thousands of U.S. jobs. He also praised trade between the two countries as “a long and steady relationship.”
During the past year, Mr. Crook predicted that the free trade agreement would be completed before he was reassigned following the normal four-year term. He said that the new agreement should further bind the two countries together and that Atlanta and Sydney will always have a special relationship as host cities for the Olympic Games.
Despite global security concerns, the Australian economy has remained strong, he said. “Australians have continued to go about doing their business and traveling,” he added.
He also said that he was grateful for the support that he has received from the Australian New Zealand American Chamber of Commerce and the Australian Women's Association that has been active for more than a dozen years.
He also was optimistic about the growing acceptance of Australian wines in the Southeast and enthusiastic about the growing popularity of Australian rules football.
In addition, Mr. Crook pointed out the growing number of Australian bakery cafes that sell home country favorites such as meat pies, sausage rolls and jam tarts, his personal favorite.
As dean of the consular corps, he said that he enjoyed working with the other government and trade representatives posted here and felt that city and state officials had addressed their concerns about protocol issues affecting foreign dignitaries.
Call (404) 760-3401 to reach the Australian Consulate General or send an email to Mr. Crook at email@example.com.