Council members biographies

books

Mr David Gonski AC (Chairman)

UNSW

Official Member
Chancellor

BCom, LLB (UNSW), FAICD (Life), FCPA, Hon. LLD (UOW)

David Gonski is Chancellor of the University of New South Wales. David is also the President of the Art Gallery of NSW Trust. He is a Non-Executive Chairman of Barrenjoey Capital Partners Group Holdings Pty Limited. He is a Director of Sydney Airport Limited board and a member of the board of the Lowy Institute for International Policy, Member of the Accelerating R&D in NSW Advisory Committee, a Patron of the Australian Indigenous Education Foundation and Raise Foundation and a Founding Panel Member of Adara Partners.

He was previously Chairman of the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd, Chair of the Review to Achieve Educational Excellence in Australian Schools for the Commonwealth Government of Australia, a member of the Takeovers Panel, Director of Singapore Airlines Limited, the Westfield Group and Singapore Telecommunications Limited, Chairman of Coca-Cola Amatil Ltd, the Australian Securities Exchange Ltd, the Sydney Theatre Company, the Guardians of the Future Fund, the Australia Council for the Arts, the Board of Trustees of Sydney Grammar School and Investec Bank (Australia) Ltd. (March 2021)

Professor Attila Brungs FTSE FRNS

UNSW

Official Member
Vice-Chancellor and President

BSc (Hons) (UNSW), DPhil (Oxon) 

Professor Brungs commenced his appointment on 31 January 2022, joining UNSW from his position as Vice-Chancellor and President of University of Technology Sydney (UTS) (2014 – 2021). He was Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Vice-President (Research), UTS (2009 – 2014). In November 2021, Professor Brungs was appointed Emeritus Professor and Emeritus Vice-Chancellor, UTS.

He is a distinguished academic and higher education leader with extensive experience in government and corporate sectors. He has held senior roles with CSIRO and McKinsey & Company, and leadership roles and appointments including Chair of the Australian Technology Network of Universities, the NSW Vice-Chancellors’ Page 2 Committee; and member of the Universities Australia Board, the Federal Government Sustainability Research Committee, the Committee for Sydney Board, the NSW Innovation and Productivity Council, and the Federal Government’s National University Precincts Advisory Committee.

Professor Brungs’ esteemed academic career commenced with undergraduate studies at UNSW, from which he graduated with a Bachelor of Science and the University Medal in Industrial Chemistry. He then studied as a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University, attaining a Doctor of Philosophy in Inorganic Chemistry. In 2018, Professor Brungs was elected a Fellow of the Academy of Technology and Engineering for his research into heterogeneous catalysis and for his leadership in the higher education sector.

Professor Brungs’ fundamental belief that universities exist as a public good for the benefit of all drives his passion for higher education and research. He has been an ardent advocate of the contribution universities made to the COVID-19 response in Australia and globally, and for the critical role they will have in Australia’s recovery and growth in the coming years. He is a dedicated innovator who believes universities have the responsibility to prepare their students for the jobs of the future and to be instrumental in creating those opportunities.

The returning UNSW alumnus is excited about working with the UNSW community to further enhance the University’s reputation as a dynamic, progressive hub of education and research excellence. He is committed to harnessing the vast talents and ideas of students, staff, alumni, Council and partners to realise the UNSW vision to have a positive impact on the world around us.

Professor Brungs is keen to build on UNSW’s strong collaboration and research commercialisation credentials, finding more opportunities to partner with government, industry and other academic institutions to create real benefits for Australia and for communities around the world.

Professor Brungs is honoured to have returned to UNSW to lead the University in its mission to improve lives globally, through innovative research, transformative education and a commitment to a just society.

(February 2022)

Professor Scott Kable

UNSW

Official Member
President of the Academic Board
PhD (Griffith) BSc Hons (Griffith) Grad Dip Business Admin (QUT)

Scott has a PhD from Griffith University and a postdoctoral research degree from Cornell University. After a short stint in industry with Procter and Gamble in London, he started his independent academic career at the University of Sydney in 1992.  In 2014, he moved to UNSW as a research professor and was appointed Head of School in 2015.

As a researcher, Prof Kable studies fundamental chemical reaction dynamics, especially with relevance to atmospheric chemistry. His research group have discovered new chemical pathways that improve our understanding of important atmospheric processes, such as climate change, ozone depletion and pollution. He is a recipient of the Le Fevre Medal of the Australian Academy of Science, the Physical Chemistry Medal of the Royal Australian Chemical Institute (RACI) and a Fulbright Senior Fellowship. He has twice served on the ARC College of Experts and was Chair of the Physics, Chemistry and Earth Sciences Panel in 2015.

Prof Kable is also a celebrated teacher.  He has won Vice Chancellor’s teaching awards at UNSW.  He has been the recipient of Carrick (national) teaching awards twice, and teaching awards from the RACI.

July 2023

Justice Elizabeth Cheeseman

UNSW

Ministerial Appointment
LLB BA (USyd)

Justice Cheeseman graduated from the University of Sydney with a Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Arts in 1990. Justice Cheeseman spent the first 5 years of her career as a solicitor. She practised at the Bar from 1996 to 2021 and was appointed Senior Counsel in 2012. She was a founding member of New Chambers and succeeded David Jackson KC as head of chambers.

At the Bar, Justice Cheeseman specialised in commercial, corporate, banking, regulatory (focussing on financial services, superannuation and markets) and insurance law. She also practised in proceeds of crime litigation.

Justice Cheeseman was the chair of the New South Wales Bar Association Practice Development Committee from 2015 to 2019, chair of the New South Wales Bar Association Working Party on the Australian Law Reform Committee Inquiry into Class Action Proceedings and Third Party Litigation Funders in 2018 and a member of a New South Wales Bar Association Professional Conduct Committee from 2011 to 2015.

Justice Cheeseman was appointed to the Federal Court of Australia on 12 April 2021. Her Honour sits in the following National Practice Areas of the Court ‑ Intellectual Property NPA: Trade Marks and Copyright & Industrial Design; Commercial & Corporations NPA: Commercial Contracts, Banking, Finance & Insurance, Corporations & Corporate Insolvency, General & Personal Insolvency, Economic Regulator, Competition & Access and Regulator & Consumer Protection; Native Title NPA and Other Federal Jurisdiction NPA: Defamation.

Dr Raji Ambikairajah

UNSW

Ministerial Appointment
BEng (Hons) Eng (UNSW), PhD (UNSW), GAICD

Dr Raji Ambikairajah holds a PhD in electrical engineering from UNSW and has spent most of her career in the technology start‐up and venture capital sectors. As the former Chief Executive Officer of the tech start‐up, Folo, she led the launch of a new profit‐for‐purpose ecommerce platform which attracted thousands of users and democratised philanthropy. Prior to this, Raji was the Chief Operating Officer of Women in Banking and Finance where she accelerated the organisation's growth over a 24‐month period to span four cities in Australia.

Raji is an Ambassador for Room to Read, a global non‐profit organisation that provides children in low‐income communities with access to education. Before this, Raji was Room to Read's Sydney Chapter Leader for seven years. Under her leadership, the chapter reached 116,480 children, grew to be the biggest in the world in terms of number of volunteers and was in the top five globally for fundraising.

Raji is an experienced board director and is currently a Non‐Executive Director across a range of boards including the NSW State Library Foundation, the Belvoir Theatre and the UNSW Foundation. Raji was awarded the 2018 NSW Woman of the Year Award in the Community Hero category. In 2019, Raji won the Chief Executive Women scholarship to study strategic innovation at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA.

(April 2020)

Dr Jennifer Alexander

UNSW

Member appointed by Council
Pro-Chancellor

MCom, MHP, MBBS

Dr Jennifer Alexander is a registered medical practitioner, with degrees in medicine, health administration and commerce and medical specialist qualifications in medical administration (FRACMA) and public health (FAFPHM). She is also a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD), the Australian Institute of Management (AIM), and the Australian College of Health Service Managers.

Jennifer is currently a non-executive director of Mindgardens Neuroscience Network. Her previous and current UNSW appointments include: Council member (2008-2012; 2014 – current), Pro-Chancellor (2011- 2012; 2014 - current), Board of Governors of the UNSW Alumni Association, Leaders Forum of the ARC Centre of Excellence in Population Ageing Research and Alumni Leaders Network of the UNSW Business School ( 2005 – current).

She has served on the boards of Neuroscience Australia ( NeuRA), the Health Insurance Commission, Medibank Private, the NSW Medical Board, Health Leaders Network, Health Communication Network, Relationships Australia (NSW),the Royal Australasian College of Medical Administrators, of which she was President (1994-1996) and the national children’s choir, Gondwana Voices, of which she was chairman (2006- 2010). From 2014- 2018 she was an independent advisor on clinical governance to the board of Medibank Private. She has served on the Audit and Risk Committees of the NSW State Emergency Service and the Barangaroo Delivery Authority.

Her previous executive roles have included Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians (2009-2014), CEO Australian Institute of Management (NSW & ACT) (2004-2009), CEO Health Leaders Network (HLN) (1998-2004), General Superintendent (CEO) of Westmead Hospital and Community Health Services (1989-1995) and Medical Director and Deputy CEO (St Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney) (1984- 1989). She has also undertaken numerous consulting assignments in the areas of strategy, leadership and organisational development, organisational change and institutional strengthening with experience in Australia, NZ, Asia, UK, Europe and USA.

(February 2020)

Ms Maxine Brenner

UNSW

Member appointed by Council
BA LLB

Maxine Brenner is a Director of Origin Energy Ltd, Orica Ltd, Qantas Airways Limited and Woolworths Group.

Ms Brenner was formerly a Managing Director of Investment Banking at Investec Bank (Australia) Ltd. She has extensive experience in corporate advisory work, particularly in relation to mergers and acquisitions, corporate restructures and general corporate activity. She practised as a lawyer with Freehill, Hollingdale & Page (now Herbert Smith Freehills) where she specialised in corporate work and spent several years as a lecturer in the Faculty of Law at both UNSW Sydney and the University of Sydney.

Ms Brenner was Deputy Chair of Federal Airports Corporation and a Director of Neverfail Springwater Ltd, Bulmer Australia Ltd, Treasury Corporation of NSW and Growthpoint Properties Australia Ltd. She also served as a Member of the Australian Government's Takeover Panel.

(April 2021)

Mr Mark Johnson

UNSW

Member appointed by Council
BCom (UNSW), FCA, CPS, FAICD

Mark Johnson is a company director and advisor. He is currently Chairman and a non-executive director of G8 Education and the Hospital Contributions Fund of Australia (HCF) and a non-executive director of Coca-Cola Amatil, The Smith Family and Goodman Limited. Mark is also a director of a number of other private operating businesses.

He is formerly a Director of Westfield Corporation and HSBC Bank Australia. Mark completed his term as CEO and Senior Partner for Australia for PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in 2012 after a career spanning more than 30 years with that firm and its predecessors. He was also Deputy Chairman for Asia and a member of its Global Leadership Team. Mark is a former member of the Australian Auditing and Assurance Standards Board and was for a number of years the Deputy Chairman of the Finance and Reporting Committee of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Mark is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand. He graduated from the University of New South Wales with a Bachelor of Commerce and qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1982.

(April 2021)

Mr Matthew Grounds AM

UNSW

Member appointed by Council
BCom, LLB (UNSW)

Matthew Grounds is Co-Executive Chairman of Barrenjoey Capital Partners and Chairman of the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute.

Matthew has been involved in investment banking for over 30 years. He is one of Australia’s most experienced corporate advisers and has been responsible for a number of landmark transactions for Australian and global organisations.

Over a 25-year period, Matthew held a number of local and global senior leadership roles at UBS including leading the local investment banking business from 2003 and, most recently, Chief Executive Officer and Country Head of UBS Australasia from 2008 to 2019 when he retired. He also served as the Joint Global Head of Investment Banking for UBS from 2009 to 2012 and was a member of UBS’ Global Executive Committee from 2009 to 2015. Before joining UBS, Matthew worked for the investment banking business of Schroders in Sydney and London.

Matthew is also a member of the University of New South Wales Council, an Advisory Board Member of JDRF, a Director of the Financial Markets for Children Foundation, Co-Founder and Director of charitable listed investment company, Hearts & Minds Investments Limited, a Panel Member of Adara Partners and Chairman of NSW Govt. Cardiovascular Research Advisory Group.

Matthew graduated from the University of New South Wales and holds degrees in Commerce (Finance Major) and Law.

(January 2023)

Mr Warwick Negus

UNSW

Member appointed by Council
Deputy Chancellor
BBus (UTS), MCom (UNSW), SF Fin

Warwick Negus graduated with a Masters Degree in Commerce from UNSW in 1987. His career in the finance industry has encompassed roles in both funds management and investment banking in Australia, Asia and the UK.

Warwick began his working career as a management trainee with BHP in the early '80s but in 1987, upon graduation from UNSW, he moved to Bankers Trust Australia Limited and began work in funds management. Between 1993 and 1999 he worked for Goldman Sachs as a Managing Director in its Asset Management Division in Hong Kong, Singapore and London. He moved back to Australia as Managing Director in the Firm's Sydney-based Investment Banking Division where he worked until September 2002.

In 2002, Warwick co-founded 452 Capital Pty Limited, an independent fund management company which was later sold to CBA. In June 2005, he was appointed as Chief Executive of Colonial First State Global Asset Management (CFS GAM), Australia's largest fund manager and he retained the role until 2008.

Warwick was a founding member of the Advisory Board of the Faculty of Commerce and Economics in 2001. It was later to become the UNSW Business School. He was Chairman of the Advisory Board until 2008.

He joined the Council of UNSW in 2008 and has been the Presiding Member of the Finance Committee of Council since that time. In 2020, he was appointed as Deputy Chancellor. He is a Director of Washington H Soul Pattinson & Co, the Bank of Queensland and Virgin Australia. He is Chairman of Pengana capital and a Director of Terrace Tower Group. Warwick has been Chairman of UNSW Global Limited since 2017 and was a Director of the UNSW Foundation until 2016.

(February 2020)

Professor Justine Nolan

UNSW

Elected Member of Academic Staff
MPP University of California, Berkley, LLB (Hons) (ANU), BSc (ANU)

Justine Nolan is the Director of the Australian Human Rights Institute and a Professor in the Faculty of Law and Justice at UNSW Sydney. She has published widely on business and human rights and her latest book, Addressing Modern Slavery (2019) (with M. Boersma) examines how consumers, business and government are both part of the problem and the solution in curbing modern slavery in global supply chains.  She advises companies, NGOs and governments on these issues and is a member of the Australian Government’s Modern Slavery Expert Advisory Group. Justine has practiced as a private sector and international human rights lawyer.  She is the Executive Editor of the Australian Journal of Human Rights,  a member of the Editorial Board of the Business and Human Rights Journal and is a Visiting Scholar at NYU Stern Center for Business and Human Rights.

Dr Lana Tatour

Elected Member of Academic Staff
TBA

TBA  

Ms Catherine Rowe

UNSW

Elected Member of Professional Staff
Dip of Mgmt (Australian College of Comm and Mgmt)

Catherine Rowe has over 20 years of Management experience and has worked at UNSW since 2011. Catherine brings a wealth of operations management experience from her previous career in retail management and through her roles at UNSW. She is currently the Deputy Faculty Executive Director of UNSW’s newest Faculty, Arts, Design and Architecture. As Deputy Faculty Executive Director, Catherine manages a large team of professional staff and oversees the operations of the faculty and the administration units within its 6 schools. She is responsible for delivering strategic and operational services to the faculty whilst developing and implementing faculty-wide shared services in line with School and Centre requirements. 

In her role Catherine works across many enterprise-wide projects and programs of works. She has a strong network of colleagues including the Faculty Operations Managers, Faculty Executive Directors, and Business Partners (and similar) in IT, Estate management, HR, External Engagement, Student Services and Student Recruitment. 

Catherine’s experience has seen her work in both school and faculty roles. She has supported faculties through significant changes including the workplace change with OPEX in 2017 and the COVID related impacts leading to the creation of ADA in 2020. Catherine enjoys developing her team to meet their full potential and driving process improvements to create efficiencies and increase levels of administrative support. 

 

Mr James Raggatt

Elected Student Member - Postgraduate Student
TBA

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Pepsi Sharma

Elected Student Member - Undergraduate Student

TBA

 

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