All change at ETSA as Lai takes over as secretary general

26 November 2020

It’s all change at the European Textile Services Association (ETSA) with immediate effect as long time secretary general Robert Long steps down after 25 years to open the door to the top job for Elena Lai.

No stranger to the world of lobbying at the highest level, Lai is an experienced, driven and reliable European and international senior consultant with a strong focus on public affairs and the set-up of international/strategic partnerships with a wide range of stakeholders: from national/local and EU governmental institutions to civil society and educational institutions, using excellent lobbying and networking skills. From China to Australia, passing through a wide range of member states in Europe she has been instrumental in channeling strategic information across several sectors.

Before her accession to ETSA chief, she was head of Office at Europe Analytica where her specialty was media, culture and creative sector with extensive knowledge of EU funding programmes such as Horizon 2020 and Creative Europe and focus on innovation.

Prior to her appointment at Europe Analytica, Lai was secretary general at  CEPI European Audiovisual Production and before that regional and International officer networks development at Nottingham City Council in the UK and she also held the post of Italian language lecturer at Nottingham Trent University.

Lai said her proudest career moment, so far, was to be nominated as “’best employee of the year; at Nottingham City Council for her role in promoting the international agenda for culture at local and European level, to overcome racism and xenophobia and support disadvantaged areas of the city with the use of culture and the creative industries”.

The new secretary general arrives just weeks after Andreas Holzer, a member of bardusch group’s business management team, was named the new president of ETSA. He has been elected to hold the post for the next three years.

Holzer, took over the role from Thomas Krautschneider, CEO of the Austrian company Salesianer. ETSA members held their first meeting under Holzer’s presidency on 8 September.

Robert Long said on his departure: “Although I love this industry and especially the people in it, I have decided to move to something totally different – teaching English at school.” LCNi wishes Robert the very best in his new career.


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