Board of Governors & Staff

Board of Governors

Mr Charles Goode.

Mr Charles B. Goode AC (Chairman)

BCom(Hons) Melb MBA Columbia Hon LLD Melb Hon LLD Monash

Governor since 1987, Chairman since 1994

Mr Charles Goode is the Chairman of the Australian United Investment Company Ltd, Diversified United Investment Ltd, and Flagstaff Partners. In February 2010 he retired as Chairman of Australia and New Zealand Banking Group; in July 2007 as Chairman of Woodside Petroleum Ltd after serving as a director for 19 years and as Chairman for 8 years.

Mr Goode was made a Companion of the Order of Australia in June 2001. In May 2003 he was a recipient of The Centenary Medal. He received the Melbourne Business School Award for 2006 and at the MBS Annual Alumni Dinner there is a Charles Goode Oration. He has been honoured as a Life Member of the National Gallery of Victoria, a Member of Foodbank Australia’s Hall of Fame, and a Life Member of Philanthropy Australia. He is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and received the A.I.C.D (Victorian Division) Distinguished Fellow Award for 2010 and in 2012 was Alumni of Distinction Lifetime Achievement Award by the Faculty of Business and Economics, University of Melbourne.

Charles Goode is also Chairman of the Board of Governors of The Ian Potter Foundation.

Tony Burgess

Mr Anthony Burgess

BCom(Hons) Melb MBA Harvard CPA FFin

Governor since 2013

Tony Burgess is Chief Executive Officer of Flagstaff Partners, an independent corporate finance advisory firm.

Mr Burgess has over 30 years of experience in corporate finance in Melbourne, London and New York and was previously Global Co-Head of Mergers and Acquisitions for Deutsche Bank AG, based in London.

Mr Burgess holds an MBA (Distinction) from Harvard Business School (1985) and a Bachelor of Commerce (First Class Honours) from the University of Melbourne (1981). He is a Director of the listed investment company, Diversified United Investment Limited, a Director of Melbourne Business School Limited, Chairman of the Melbourne Foundation for Business and Economics, a Governor of The Ian Potter Foundation and a Director of the Board of Management of the Melbourne Theatre Company.

He is a member of CPA Australia and a Fellow of the Financial Services Institute of Australasia.

Prof Sir Edward Byrne portrait

Professor Sir Edward Byrne AC Kt

FMedSci FTSE FAHMS(Hon) MB BS MD (UTAS) DSc (Melb) MBA (UQ) Dipl Clin Sci (Adel) FRACP FRCPE FRCP FAAN

Governor since 2021

Prior to his appointment, Professor Byrne was the President and Principal of King’s College London, and Chairman of King’s Health Partners from 2014 – 2021. At King’s College, Professor Byrne established a new university mission and vision for 2029 and significantly increased the range of degrees and programmes available to students.  Professor Byrne also founded the King’s Business School and through his work and connections with industry and business, King’s College has grown its global links as well as partnerships within London.

Professor Byrne is a neuroscientist and clinician by background. He qualified in medicine at the University of Tasmania in 1974 and subsequently trained as a neurologist in both Adelaide and London. He is a fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians, the Royal Colleges of Physicians of London and Edinburgh, the American Academy and the American Association of Neurology. He holds the higher degrees of Doctor of Medicine (UTAS) and Doctor of Science (University of Melbourne).

In 2003, he took up responsibility as Executive Dean of Medicine, Nursing and Health Science at Monash University. During this period, research income doubled, Professor Byrne strengthened the School of Biomedical Sciences and supported the establishment of a new Medical School in Malaysia as a branch of Monash. In 2007 he left Australia for London where he held the positions of Executive Dean of the Faculty of Biomedical Sciences, Head of the Medical School and Vice Provost at University College London until 2009.

Professor Byrne has served on a number of Company Boards. He was a non-executive director of Cochlear Pty Ltd for almost 20 years and had served as the Chairman of the company’s Medical Science Committee, as well as on the Nomination and Technology & Innovation Committees.  He was also director of BUPA, a private healthcare insurance provider in the UK and Australia.

Professor Byrne received the AO (Officer of the Order of Australia) in 2006, the AC (Companion of the Order of Australia) in 2014 and was awarded a Knighthood in the Queen’s Birthday Honours in 2020. Professor Byrne has dual British and Australian nationality.

He has wide interests in the arts and has written several books of poetry. He is a fellow of the Australian Academy of Technology, Science and Engineering and an honorary fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences. In 2019, he was also elected as a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences in the UK. He has honorary doctorates from the Universities of Sydney, Monash, Adelaide, Warwick and Western, Ontario and honorary professorships at Warwick, Peking University and UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology.

Alex 6108 HighRes

The Hon Alex Chernov AC QC

B.Com LL.B (Hons) Melb Hon LLD Melbourne and Monash Universities

After completing his degrees Alex Chernov practised as a barrister for over 30 years in commercial law and equity and was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1980.

Whilst a barrister he also taught law, co-authored a legal text, was involved in law reform, acted as company inspector and chaired a number of tribunals. He became Chairman of the Victorian Bar, Vice President of the Australian Bar Association and, later, President of the Law Council of Australia and Vice President of LawAsia.

In 1997 Alex Chernov was appointed to the Trial Division of the Supreme Court of Victoria and, in the following year, to its Court of Appeal. In 2009 he was elected as Chancellor of the University of Melbourne. He was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2008 and a Companion of the Order in 2012.

Alex Chernov was sworn in as Victoria’s 28th Governor in April 2011 and, in September, 2014 as deputy to the Governor-General.  After completing his term Mr Chernov joined the boards of The Ian Potter Foundation, the Grattan Institute which he chairs, and other organisations and has been involved in alternative dispute resolutions.

Susan Crennan 72dpi

The Hon Susan Crennan AC, QC

BA Melb LLB Syd PostGradDipHist Melb HonDUniv ACU

Governor since 2015

Susan Crennan was appointed to the High Court of Australia in November 2005.  She had then served for almost two years as a judge on the Federal Court. Before appointment Susan Crennan was a barrister for 24 years, 14 of them as one of her Majesty’s Counsel (Queen’s Counsel). During that time she became Chair (now President) of the Victorian Bar Council, President of the Australian Bar Association and served as a Commonwealth Commissioner for Human Rights. She has been admitted as a barrister at King’s Inns Dublin and appointed as a Master of the Bench (Hon) of Gray’s Inn, London.

Following retirement from the High Court in 2015 she conducts private dispute resolution, chiefly in Victoria and New South Wales.  She has been a member and chair of several committees of the Victorian Bar and the University of Melbourne, including serving as Deputy‑Chancellor of the University.  In 2008 she was made a Companion of the Order of Australia.

Leon Davis 2007 JMP0034

Mr Leon A Davis AO

FRACI FAIMM

Governor since 2007

Karen Day lo res

Professor Karen Day AM

BSc(Hons) Melb PhD Melb

Governor since 2021

Professor Day is an infectious disease epidemiologist dedicated to improving global public health.  She is a microbe hunter describing the diversity of malaria parasites globally to improve disease surveillance and control. She has extensive international experience leading field programmes in malaria-endemic areas of East, West and Southern Africa, India, Southeast Asia, Papua New Guinea and South America. She is a founder of the scientific discipline of malaria genomic epidemiology.  She has a strong track record of mentoring junior scientists.  

Professor Day is also an experienced educator and academic administrator in medicine and science and has held senior leadership posts in universities in the UK, US and Australia. Highlights include being recruited to the University of Oxford in 1993 where she was soon promoted to Professor for her scholarship and leadership. She is an Emeritus Fellow of Hertford College, Oxford, having been one of the first women science “dons” at that College.  From 2004-13, Professor Day led the development of interdisciplinary global public health programs as Director of the Institute of Urban and Global Health at New York University. Most recently she has been the Dean of Science at the University of Melbourne. Her profile as a manager is a change agent, building new enterprises and restructuring to improve organizational achievement. She now continues her malaria epidemiology research at the University of Melbourne.  

Craig Drummond bodyshot friendly

Mr Craig Drummond

BCom Melb SFFin

Governor since July 2021

Craig Drummond most recently retired as Chief Executive Officer of Medibank Private Ltd, a position he held since July 2016. Medibank is Australia’s leading private health insurer committed to supporting the health and wellbeing of Australians.

Prior to this Craig has had over 30 years of experience in the financial sector – Group Executive Finance and Strategy at NAB from 2013 to 2016; Bank of America Merrill Lynch as Chief Executive Officer and Country Head from 2009 to 2013. Prior to that, he was at Goldman Sachs JB Were (1986 to 2009), in various roles culminating in Chief Executive Officer. 

Craig graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Melbourne in 1981. He completed the Advanced Management Program at Wharton University in 2001. Craig is a Senior Fellow of the Financial Services Institute of Australasia and is a Chartered Accountant.

Craig is currently a non-executive director of Transurban Limited and Australian Foundation Investment Company Limited and President of the Geelong Football Club.

Emma Johnston pic

Professor Emma Johnston AO

FTSE FRSN, BSc Hons PhD Melb

Governor since 2021

Professor Johnston is currently Dean of Science and Professor of Marine Ecology and Ecotoxicology at UNSW Sydney. She studies the impacts of human activities in marine ecosystems and how we can build ecological resilience. Her research is conducted in diverse field environments; from Antarctica to the Great Barrier Reef, and temperate Australian estuaries. 

A highly awarded scientisteducator and communicator, Professor Johnston was previously Pro Vice-Chancellor Research at UNSW and Director of the Sydney Harbour Research Program for the Sydney Institute of Marine Science. She is an elected fellow of the Australian Technological Society (ATSE) and her awards include the Australian Academy of Science’s inaugural Nancy Millis Medalthe Royal Society of New South Wales Clark Medal, and the Eureka Prize for Science Communication. In 2018 she was made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for “distinguished service to higher education, particularly to marine ecology and ecotoxicology, as an academic, researcher and administrator, and to scientific institutes”. 

Professor Johnston is a national advocate for the Science and Technology sector, Co-Chief Author of the Australian Government’s State of Environment Report, and a Director on the Board of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority.  She consults with industry through the development and implementation of new biomonitoring and ecological engineering techniques and frequently contributes expert opinion to state, federal and international agencies.  Professor Johnston is also a television presenter for the ongoing BBC/Foxtel series, Coast Australia. 

ProffLarkins2

Professor Richard Larkins AC

MD BS Melb PhD Lon Hon LLD Melb Hon LLD Monash FTSE FRACP FRCP FRCPI FAMMal FAMSing

Governor since 2013

Allan Myers

Mr Allan J Myers AC QC

BA LLB(Hons) Melb BCL Oxon HonDUniv ACU HonLLD Melb

Governor since 2004

Allan Myers is one of Her Majesty’s Counsel (Queen’s Counsel) in all States and Territories of Australia and a barrister in England and Papua New Guinea. For 40 years he has practised continuously as a barrister, principally in Victoria, although his professional work has led to appearances in all jurisdictions within Australia, Papua New Guinea and England. His practice has been predominantly in aspects of commercial law.  He has frequently advised in relation to transactions under the laws of other countries.

Over many years Allan has provided support to professional and charitable entities by membership and chairmanship of committees and Foundations at the Victorian Bar, University Of Melbourne, Oxford University, Monivae College, Florey Neurosciences Institute, the National Gallery of Victoria and others.

Allan is Chair of the National Gallery of Australia, the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory and Grattan Institute.  In January 2001 he was awarded the Centenary Medal and, in June 2016, was made an Commander of the Order of Australia.

Lady Potter AC 2050 Copy

Lady Potter AC CMRI

HonDUniv ACU Hon LLD Monash

Governor since 1993

Lady [Primrose] Potter has been an active supporter of the Australian arts sector over several decades. She was Founding Honorary Patron of the Melba Foundation and Founding Patron of the Victorian Opera Company and Patron-in-Chief of The Melbourne Opera Company. She has also served as director and Victorian Chairman of the Elizabethan Theatre Trust and founding director of the Bell Shakespeare Company, and Director of the Australian Ballet School.  In the field of Contemporary Art, Lady Potter has been Patron of the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, is current Patron of The Ian Potter Museum of Art at Melbourne University, Honorary Life Member of the National Gallery Victoria and was founding benefactor of the Museum of Contemporary Art. 

Beyond the Arts, Lady Potter is a founding director of International Specialist Skills Institute and of the Williamson Community Leadership Program (now Leadership Australia), as well as Fellow of the Institute of Directors. 

Lady Potter was awarded an Officer of the Order of Australia for her contribution to the community in 1988, followed by a Companion of the Order of Australian in 2003.

Brian P Schmidt

Professor Brian Schmidt AC

BS UofA AM PhD Hardvard HonDUniv UofA HonDUniv UChile HonDUniv UQ FAA FRS NAS

Governor since 2015

Brian Schmidt is a Laureate Fellow and Distinguished Professor at the Australian National University. Schmidt received undergraduate degrees in Astronomy and Physics from the University of Arizona in 1989, and completed his Astronomy Master's degree (1992) and PhD (1993) from Harvard University. Under his leadership, in 1998,the HighZ Supernova Search team made the startling discovery that the expansion rate of the universe is accelerating, work that earned him the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics. Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science, the United States Academy of Science, and the Royal Society, he was made a Companion of the Order of Australia in 2013.

Fiona ABC Board Photo July 2013

Professor Fiona Stanley AC

FAA, FASSA, MSc, MD< FFPHM, FAFPHM, FRACP, FRANZCOG, Hon DSc, Hon Duniv, Hon FRACGP, Hon MD, Hon FRCPCH, Hon LLB (honoris causa)

Professor Fiona Stanley AC is the Founding Director and Patron of the Telethon Kids Institute (formerly Telethon Institute for Child Health Research), Distinguished Research Professor at the University of Western Australia and Patron of Murdoch’s new Indigenous health research centre, Ngangk Yira Research Centre for Aboriginal Health and Social Equity, which launched in early 2018. She is also a Director of the Australian National Development Index at the University of Melbourne.  

Trained in maternal and child health, epidemiology and public health, Professor Stanley has spent her career researching the causes of major childhood illnesses such as birth defects. Her research includes the gathering and analysis of population data for epidemiological and public health research; the causes and prevention of birth defects and major neurological disorders, particularly the cerebral palsies; patterns of maternal and child health in Aboriginal and Caucasian populations; various ways of determining the developmental origins of health and disease; collaborations to link research, policy and practice; and strategies to enhance health and well-being in populations. She pioneered the development, linkage and analysis of population level data and record linkage in Western Australia as a research and evaluation capacity.

Her major contribution has been to establish the Telethon Kids Institute, a unique multidisciplinary independent research institute focusing on the causes and prevention of major problems affecting children and youth and to establish the Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth.  She has over 300 publications, books and book chapters and is a board member of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and the Gurrumul Yunupingu Foundation.  She is also a Governor of The Ian Potter Foundation and a former member of the Prime Minister’s Science, Engineering and Innovation Council, and has served on major international, national and local committees.  For her research on behalf of Australia's children and Aboriginal social justice, she was named Australian of the Year in 2003 and in 2006 she was made a UNICEF Australia Ambassador for Early Childhood Development.

Staff

Mairead Phillips 20191126

Mairead Phillips

Program Manager

Mairead Phillips took up of role of Program Manager for The George Alexander Foundation in 2018. Mairead is responsible for the administration of the scholarship and fellowship programs run through The George Alexander Foundation.

Mairead graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy (Honours) from The University of Melbourne where Mairead has tutored and lectured in the School of Culture and Communication at an undergraduate, honours and masters level.

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Sara Hearn

Communications Manager

Sara joined the Foundation in 2015 as Communications Coordinator. In 2017, she took on the role of Communications Manager. to primarily Her background includes working in online publishing in the higher education sector, providing digital services for the academic and corporate library sectors and developing and maintaining websites and other digital media platforms. 

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Craig Connelly

Chief Executive Officer

Craig commenced as CEO of The George Alexander Foundation in December 2015. Craig Connelly is an accomplished financier and businessman, now dedicated to contributing to the community sector. He spent 25 years working in a variety of roles in the Australian financial services sector, initially with respected chartered accounting firm, Price Waterhouse, followed by 11 years as a leading Australian equities analyst and partner with JB Were.  In 2004, Craig successfully established his own Australian Equities long/short fund before selling his interest in the fund in late 2011. A Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and a Fellow of the Financial Services Institute of Australasia, Craig is an experienced business analyst and successful manager whose professional strengths lie in his research innovation, industry analysis, technical expertise and strong communication skills.  Craig has also been an effective mentor to many young professionals throughout his business career. 

Over the past 15 years, Craig has spent time supporting personal philanthropic pursuits, most notably his Swim For Life campaign in December 2005 and December 2006; raising funds for new day beds at the Royal Melbourne Hospital 5 West cancer day ward, and more recently devoting his efforts to the advancement of a large community club in the north west region of metropolitan Melbourne.

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Nina Beer

Communications Officer
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Gail Lewry

Administration Manager
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Sue Wilkinson

Administration Officer

Sue has worked for The George Alexander Foundation since 2007.  After completing a Senior Secretarial diploma in 1979, Sue was recruited by the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation.  She then moved on to a career within the oil industry before moving to an administration role with a small engineering company.  Sue then took a 6 year career break while living in the UK and USA, before returning to Melbourne in 2006. Sue completed a Diploma in Visual Arts in 1996 and still continues to paint/create in her spare time.

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Viktoria Kritharelis

Finance Officer
Donate The scholars and fellows supported through the GAF-funded programs are committed to their studies, to giving back to the community and to doing their utmost to uphold the investment that has been made in them. If you would like to invest in the education of some talented and dedicated young Australians, please make a tax-deductible donation online by clicking on Donate or contact us on 03 9650 3188 for other options.
We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we work. We pay our respects to their Elders past and present.

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