Member councils

The Eastern Region Group of Councils (ERG) is a representative regional body whose membership comprises six local government authorities of eastern metropolitan Melbourne: Knox, ManninghamMaroondah, Monash, Whitehorse and Yarra Ranges.

The ERG works collaboratively on issues on common significance, importance and priority through advocacy, protection, research and integrated planning on behalf of the communities of the eastern metropolitan region. The collaborative intent of the ERG is based on building regional leverage as a cumulative motive force.


We work collaboratively on issues of common significance, importance and priority through advocacy, research and integrated planning on behalf of the communities of the eastern region.

We collectively pursue:

  • Better community outcomes in a high demand environment.
  • Service effectiveness and efficiency in a resource constrained environment.

We will achieve this through:

  • Integrated planning (built and social).
  • Joint procurement and shared services.
  • Advocacy.

Cr Sharon Ellis (Chair)

Cr Sharon Ellis was re-elected to Council serving her fifth term in October, 2016. Cr Ellis has lived in Surrey Hills for a number of years and is married with three adult children. Her areas of interest include planning and environment, affordable housing, aged care and disability issues.

Cr Sharon Ellis has a Bachelor of Arts majoring in politics and sociology. She previously served 14 years in the Victorian public service, including the areas of housing, superannuation and policy development.

Her achievements include being Whitehorse Mayor for 2005/06, 2013/14 and re-elected Mayor 2019/20 and four-time chair of the Whitehorse Manningham Regional Library Corporation.

Cr Sharon Ellis has developed close links with many local clubs and community groups in Whitehorse – she is an honorary member of the Mont Albert Surrey Hills Rotary Club.

She represents Council on the Municipal Association of Victoria, Eastern Affordable Housing Alliance, Advisory Committee for the review of the Chief Executive Officer’s development, Major Projects Councillor Reference Group, Eastern Region Group and Whitehorse Matsudo Sister City Councillor Reference Group.

Cr Mike Symon (Deputy Chair)

Cr Mike Symon lives in Heathmont with his wife Cheryl and their two daughters who attend Ringwood Secondary College. He is a licensed industrial and commercial electrician and OH&S coordinator. Cr Mike Symon represented most areas of Maroondah as the Federal Member for Deakin from 2007 to 2013 and served as the Chair of the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Education and Employment. Cr Mike Symon is interested in community infrastructure, local planning, and environment issues, and ensuring best value services and facilities for the Maroondah community. He served as Deputy Mayor in 2017-18 and was elected to the MAV Board in March 2019. He will serve on the Board for two years, representing the Metropolitan East Region.

Cr Mike Symon represents Council on the Eastern Regional Group – Mayors And CEO’s Committee, Metropolitan Local Governments’ Waste Forum Committee, Municipal Association of Victoria State Council Committee, Arts Advisory Committee and the Audit And Risk Advisory Committee.

Cr Marijke Graham
Deputy Mayor, Maroondah City Council

Cr Steve Kozlowski 
CEO, Maroondah City Council

Cr Denise Massoud
Whitehorse City Council

Simon McMillan 
CEO, Whitehorse City Council

Cr Stuart James 
Mayor, Monash City Council

Cr Rebecca Paterson 
Monash City Council

Dr Andi Diamond
CEO, Monash City Council

Cr Nicole Seymour
Mayor, Knox City Council

Cr Marcia Timmers-Leitch 
Deputy Mayor, Knox City Council

Tony Doyle 
CEO, Knox City Council

Cr Richard Higgins 
Mayor, Yarra Ranges Council

Cr Len Cox
Deputy Mayor, Yarra Ranges Council

Tammi Rose
CEO, Yarra Ranges Council

Cr Paul McLeish 
Mayor, Manningham City Council

Cr Mike Zafiropoulos AM
Deputy Mayor, Manningham City Council

Andrew Day 
CEO, Manningham City Council

Liz Johnstone

ERG Executive Officer

The eastern region of Melbourne stretches from the leafy middle and outer ring suburbs such as Glen Waverley, Doncaster, Box Hill and Ringwood, to townships like Yarra Junction and Olinda in the Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges.

Characterised by the transition from well-established suburbs to semi-rural and rural landscapes, the eastern region includes the six local government areas of Monash, Whitehorse, Knox, Maroondah, Manningham and Yarra Ranges.

The region is the traditional home of the Wurundjeri and Bunurong people of the Kulin Nations.

Residents enjoy a choice of health and recreation facilities, local and regional shopping destinations, and access to leading schools, universities and other tertiary institutions.

The region’s economy is significant, containing 16% of Greater Melbourne’s jobs and a contribution of $54,522 million Gross Regional Product (GRP), or 16% of Melbourne’s total.

Regional Profile Fact Sheet
Download the PDF for more information on our Regional Profile.

Knox population
Maroondah population
Monash population
Whitehorse population
Manningham population
Yarra Ranges population

Total population (people)


(19% of Greater Melbourne’s 4,843,781)

Total land area (hectares)


(31% of Greater Melbourne’s 999,251 hectares)

Gross regional product ($M)


(16% of Greater Melbourne’s $342,189)

Each Council is represented by its Mayor, Deputy Mayor or second Councillor, and the CEO. The ERG is supported by the ERG Secretariat.

The ERG elects a Chair and Deputy Chair to preside over the ERG for the full year commencing in December each year. CEOs and the ERG Secretariat are ex-officio attending members of the ERG; voting rights are held by Councillor members only.

The ERG meets six times per year. The next meeting date is Friday 7th February 2020.
The ERG’s work is guided by the (draft) ERG Strategic Plan 2018-2021

The ERG works closely with other regional groups in the East, including: