National COVID-19 Commission (Advisory Board) Commissioners and Key Staff

National COVID-19 Commission (Advisory Board) Commissioners and Key Staff

Chair

Photo of Neville Power
Neville Power
Chairman, National COVID-19 Commission (Advisory Board) (NCC)
Focus Sectors
  • Mining and resources
  • Tourism and hospitality

Nev is the Chairman of Perth Airport, the Foundation for the WA Museum and the Royal Flying Doctors Federation Board and is the Deputy Chairman of Strike Energy Ltd.

Nev held the position of Managing Director and CEO of Fortescue Metals Group Ltd for seven years, having joined the group in 2011. During his tenure Fortescue more than quadrupled production and achieved engagement with Aboriginal communities. He was previously Chief Executive of the Australian operations at Thiess and prior to that spent more than ten years in senior executive positions at Smorgon Steel Group.

In 2016 Nev was named WA Business Leader of the Year. He also has a long history in agribusiness and aviation holding both fixed wing and rotary pilot licenses. Nev is a passionate advocate for health and development of regional and Aboriginal communities. He owns and operates a cattle station in Queensland where he was born and raised.

Deputy Chair

Photo of David Thodey AO
David Thodey AO
Deputy Chairman
Focus Sectors
  • Telecommunications
  • Science and Research
  • Tertiary education
  • Technology

David Thodey is a business leader focused on innovation, technology and telecommunications with more than 30 years of experience.

He is currently Chairman of Australia’s national scientific research agency, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Tyro, Australia’s only independent EFTPOS banking institution, and Xero, a cloud-based accounting software provider for small and medium-sized businesses. Mr Thodey is also a non-executive Board director of Ramsay Health Care, a global hospital group and Vodafone Group Plc.

Mr Thodey recently lead an Independent Review of the Australian Public Service (APS). This review was commissioned by the Prime Minister to ensure that the APS is fit-for-purpose to serve Australian Governments and the Australian people into the future.

Mr Thodey is currently Chair of an eminent Panel appointed by the NSW Government to lead an independent review of Federal Financial Relations.

Previously, he had a successful career as CEO of Telstra, Australia’s leading telecommunications and information services company and CEO of IBM Australia and New Zealand.

Mr Thodey was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Science and Technology from Deakin University in 2016 and an Honorary Doctorate of Business from University of Technology Sydney in 2018.

In 2017, Mr Thodey was made an Officer (AO) in the General Division of the Order of Australia.

Commissioners

Jane Halton AO PSM FAICD FIPPA
Jane Halton AO PSM FAICD FIPPA
Focus Sectors
  • Health (incl health education)
  • Social services
  • Finance and banking
  • Immunity assurance
  • Not-for-profits

Jane Halton AO PSM FAICD FIPPA is a member of the board of the ANZ, Clayton Utz, Crown Resorts, the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, and the US Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation.

She is chairman of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, COTA, Crown Sydney and Vault Systems.

Her 33-year career within the Australian Public Service, included nearly 15 years as Secretary of the Departments of Finance and the Department of Health (and Ageing).

Previously she was Executive Co-ordinator (Deputy Secretary) of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.

She has extensive experience in Health policy and delivery, the delivery of the Australian Government budget and the management and performance of Australian Government agencies.

Jane has held a number of significant roles in Global Health Governance including as Chair of the board of the WHO, president of the World Health Assembly and as chair of the OECD health committee.

Photo of Paul Little AO
Paul Little AO
Focus Sectors
  • Transport and logistics
  • Infrastructure
  • Agriculture
  • Wholesale, retail and supply chain

Mr Paul Little is Chairman and Founder of the Little Group. Formed in 2006, the Little Group focused initially on opportunities in the property sector through Little Projects and Little Real Estate. The Group has since expanded investments across a range of enterprises including aviation and passenger ferries.

In November 2015, Paul and his wife, Jane Hansen, launched the Hansen Little Foundation, a large-scale, active philanthropic undertaking with the singular objective of leaving a legacy of significant and positive change.

From 1986 to 2011, Paul was the Managing Director of Toll Holdings and oversaw the Toll Group’s rise to become Asia’s pre-eminent provider of logistics services.

Paul is Chairman of the Australian Grand Prix Corporation and Skalata Ventures. He is a Past Chairman of Visit Victoria and the Essendon Football Club and a former Director of Property Exchange Australia (PEXA). Paul is a Fellow of the University of Melbourne, the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport.

Paul has received a Doctor of Business honoris causa from RMIT University.

In 2010 he was awarded an Officer of the Order of Australia for service to the development of the transport and logistics industries, and for service to the community through philanthropic support of sporting and medical research organisations.

Photo of Catherine Tanna
Catherine Tanna
Focus Sectors
  • Energy and utilities

Catherine Tanna is Managing Director of EnergyAustralia, one of Australia’s leading electricity and gas retailers, serving almost 2.6 million customer accounts from a portfolio of coal, gas and wind energy generation assets. She is also a member of the boards of the Reserve Bank of Australia and the Business Council of Australia.

Prior to joining EnergyAustralia in 2014, Catherine had spent her career in the international oil and gas industry. In 2009 she was appointed Managing Director of BG Group’s Australian business, QGC Pty Limited, and Executive Vice President for Australia and China. Catherine led the development of Queensland’s first LNG project, one of Australia’s largest capital infrastructure projects at the time. In 2012 she was elevated to the position of Chairman, BG Australia.

Catherine has also held senior roles at Shell and BHP Billiton. She was Executive Vice President of Shell Gas & Power with responsibility for the company’s LNG, gas transmission and power generation interests across Africa. She held similar roles covering North Asia, Russia, North America and Latin America. In the 1990s, she worked for BHP Petroleum in Melbourne and London.

Catherine was formerly a Director on the Board of the 2018 Commonwealth Games Corporation and a member of the Australian G20 business body, the Lowy Institute's G20 Advisory Committee and the Catholic Foundation Board.

Mike Hirst

Mike is a retired career banker who has worked across most areas of the industry and has extensive experience in retail banking, balance sheet management, financial markets and strategy. After 9 years in the role of Managing Director of Bendigo and Adelaide Bank, Mike retired in July 2018.

Mike currently serves on a number of listed and not for profit boards including GMHBA, health.com.au, AMCIL and Racing Victoria where he is Deputy Chairman. Mike is an Honorary Member of the Business Council of Australia.

Mike was previously Deputy Chairman of Treasury Corporation of Victoria and the Australian Banking Association. He was also a director of Rural Bank, Sandhurst Trustees, Colonial First State Fund Managers, Barwon Health and Austraclear Limited. During the Global Financial Crisis Mike was appointed to the Federal Government’s Financial Sector Advisory Council and remained a member until his retirement.

Su McCluskey

Su is a Director of Australian Unity, Foundation for Young Australians, Australasian Pork Research Institute, NSW Rice Marketing Board, Chairman of Energy Renaissance and a Commissioner for International Agricultural Research. She was a member of the Review Panel for the Australian Charities and Not-For-Profits Commission Legislation, the Small Business Digital Taskforce and led the review of the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman. She was also a member of the Harper Review of Competition Policy and the NSW Review of the Regulatory Framework.

Su was the inaugural CEO of the Regional Australia Institute. Prior to this, Su was the CEO of the Council of Rural Research and Development Corporations, the Executive Director of the Office of Best Practice Regulation and Specialist Adviser to the Office of Small Business. Su has held senior positions with the Business Council of Australia, the National Farmers’ Federation and the Australian Taxation Office. She is also a beef cattle farmer at Yass, NSW.

Su was named the Westpac/Australian Financial Review Regional Women of Influence in 2013 and received the Women in Agribusiness award in 2014 for outstanding contribution to policy development.

Paul Howes

Paul Howes is the National Managing Partner of KPMG Enterprise, a role that he has held since July 2019. Enterprise is KPMG’s specialist practice working with mid-market, private, family and emerging businesses.

Prior to his role as National Managing Partner, Paul was the Partner in Charge of KPMG’s Customer, Brand & Marketing Advisory practice and also led KPMG’s Asset & Wealth Management practice, leading the firm’s work in the superannuation, asset management and wealth sectors.

Paul joined KPMG in 2014 after 15 years in the Australian labour movement, including 7 years as the National Secretary of The Australian Workers’ Union (AWU). He also served as Vice President of the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU).

Paul is currently a director of Beyond Blue. He has previously served as a director and Deputy Chair of AustralianSuper, a director of the Australian Workforce and Productivity Agency, the Prime Minister’s Manufacturing Taskforce, and served on the boards of a number of policy institutes.

Bao Hoang

Bao Hoang is Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Roll’d Group, one of Australia’s fastest growing fast-casual food franchises serving fresh Vietnamese. Born in Melbourne as the 3rd son of Vietnamese refugees, Bao’s key strengths are in strategic planning and innovation, with experience and expertise in small business across both the health and hospitality industries.

After completing his Bachelor of Physiotherapy at Melbourne University in 2005, Bao quickly became a franchisee, owning and managing multiple physiotherapy health clinics across Melbourne. During this time he was instrumental in growing the group’s Corporate Health Services unit, as well as founding and growing one of Australia’s premier Aged Care services.

In 2012, Bao returned to his Vietnamese roots and took a leap into the hospitality industry, applying key business learnings to grow the Roll’d Group to over 80 restaurants, employing 31 Support Office staff, and a family of over 1800 staff and franchisees. Bao is a proud husband and father of four, and is extremely passionate about entrepreneurship, innovation, technology, and sports, partnering with sporting teams in the AFL, Super Rugby, and NBL. He is especially respectful and appreciative of his Australian-Vietnamese heritage. In 2016, Bao established a partnership with Australian-run charity, Blue Dragon Children’s Foundation, and through the Roll’d Group, has since raised funds to build three boarding houses in remote Vietnamese villages to house kids in crisis. Bao also volunteers on the Board of the Centre for Multicultural Youth (CMY), an Australian not-for-profit organisation that supports young people of migrant and refugee backgrounds.

Samantha Hogg

Samantha is an experienced executive with international experience across the transport, infrastructure, energy and resources sectors. She has held senior executive positions at Transurban Group and WMC Limited across a broad range of portfolios including finance, strategic projects, marketing and corporate services. Her most recent executive role was as the Chief Financial Officer of Transurban Group.

Samantha is a Non-Executive Director of the Tasmanian Hydro-Electric Corporation, Cleanaway Waste Management Limited, MaxiTRANS Industries Limited, Tasmanian Irrigation Limited and Infrastructure Australia.

Samantha has recently been appointed to the Tasmanian Premier’s Economic and Social Recovery Advisory Council.

Samantha holds a Bachelor of Commerce, is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and resides on a farm in Northern Tasmania.

Laura Berry

Laura was appointed CEO of Supply Nation in 2015 following a career that has spanned both private and public sectors. Laura has over two decades of experience in stakeholder management, risk mitigation and reputation management and since taking the reins at Supply Nation, Laura has led the organisation through a significant period of growth: doubling the size and national footprint of the organisation, tripling corporate and government membership, and overseeing an explosion in spend with Indigenous businesses of nearly 3,000%.

Laura is a founding director of the Global Supplier Diversity Alliance, and in 2018, Laura was announced as one of the Australian Financial Review’s Top 100 Women of Influence. Laura currently holds a number of voluntary positions including a member of Minister Birmingham’s inaugural Ministerial Advisory Council for FTA negotiations, the Australian New Zealand Leadership Forum and roles on the Telstra Indigenous Advisory Committee, and the McKinsey & Company and NRMA’s Reconciliation Action Plan Steering Committees.

In 2019, Laura represented Australia at the OECD in Paris for the Indigenous Economic Development Summit and launch of the inaugural report on ‘Linking Indigenous Communities with Economic Development’.

Laura has previously held directorships of Engineering Aid Australia, Supply Nation and Indigenous Business Australia’s Cooee Traveller. Laura was also the former Chairperson of CareerTrackers Indigenous Internship Program.

Laura holds a Graduate Certificate in Management from the University of Technology, Sydney.

Laura proudly identifies with both her Aboriginal and Italian heritage and was born and raised in Canberra.

Photo of Peter Harris
Peter Harris AO
Chief Executive Officer

Peter Harris is a senior public policy adviser with extensive experience in both State and Commonwealth infrastructure projects, structural reform and national competition policy. He has had particular experience in transport and telecommunications issues over many decades.

Most recently, Peter was Chairman of the Productivity Commission (2013-18) and instrumental in the research and recommendations in reports such as “Public Infrastructure”, “Shifting the Dial” , “Data Availability and Use” and ”Competition in the Australian Financial System”.

In his earlier career, Peter served as Senior Private Secretary handling micro economic reform for then Australian Prime Minister Bob Hawke; adviser to the Hilmer Inquiry on National Competition Policy; in senior positions in the Commonwealth Department of Transport dedicated to rail, road and aviation reforms, including the privatisation of Australia’s largest airports; as Vice President in the Ansett/Air NZ group; and as Director General of Public Transport in Victoria.

Andrew N. Liveris
Special Adviser to the Commission

Andrew N. Liveris is the former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The Dow Chemical Company and director of DowDuPont. He previously served as Executive Chairman of DowDuPont.

A recognised global business leader with more than 42 years at Dow, Liveris advocates the criticality of manufacturing worldwide. He is the author of ‘Make It in America’ and was tapped by the current U.S. Administration to help identify new ways to spur innovation, revitalize the U.S. manufacturing sector and drive economic growth and prosperity as chair of the manufacturing council and a member of the apprenticeship of the future task force. Previously he served as Co-Chair of U.S. President Obama's Advanced Manufacturing Partnership steering committee and a member of the U.S. President’s Export Council. He was recently named Senior Advisor to the Saudi Arabian Governments Sovereign Wealth Fund, PIF.

He sits on the Board of Directors of IBM, Worley Parsons and Saudi Aramco, on the advisory board of Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation and NEOM.

He is the past Vice Chair of the Business Roundtable, an Executive Committee Member and past Chairman of the U.S. Business Council, and a member of the Concordia Leadership Council and the Australian Government’s Industry Growth Centres Advisory Committee.

Former Members

Photo of The Hon. Greg Combet AM

Commissioner, 25 March 2020 – 22 June 2020

The Hon. Greg Combet AM
Focus Sectors
  • Employment, labour force and industrial relations
  • Manufacturing
  • Defence industry
  • Superannuation

The Hon. Greg Combet AM is well known for his former public roles as the leader of the Australian Council of Trade Unions and as a Labor Government Minister. Greg served as Minister for Industry and Innovation, Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency and Minister for Defence Personnel, Science and Materiel amongst other roles between 2007 and 2013.

Following two terms in Parliament Greg is now pursuing a career in the superannuation industry and the private sector. He is both Chair of IFM Investors and Industry Super Australia, as well as undertaking a variety of private consulting roles.

Greg is a proven leader, strategist, complex problem solver and crisis manager with extensive, hands-on knowledge of Australian industry.

He was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia in 2006, and is the co-author of The Fights of My Life.

In 2018 Greg was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of the University of South Australia and in 2019 was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Letters in Business & Law from the University of Newcastle.