Corporate Governance

The Board of Ports North has primary responsibility to shareholding Ministers to establish strategic direction, pursue established corporate objectives and monitor business performance.

The Board recognises the importance of applying best practice corporate governance principles in fulfilling this responsibility and has committed to the highest level of integrity in the conduct of its operations. To satisfy this commitment, the Board has adopted a Directors and Senior Executives Code of Conduct and has further set out expectations of Ports North employees and others with whom Ports North has transacted business or continues to transact business in a Code of Employee Conduct.

Read More:  Risk Management & Compliance  |  Remuneration  |  Board Committees

ports north board of directors

Russell Beer LLB, GDLP
  • Chair
  • Independent Director
  • Member, Audit and Risk Committee
  • Member, Human Resources Committee

Russell is a former Director and Shareholder of and now consultant to MacDonnells Law, one of Queensland’s largest and longest established independent law firms. Russell specialises in corporate and government advisory law and has been involved in the development of many major projects and pieces of infrastructure in regional Queensland. Russell was a founding Director and long-term Chair of Advance Cairns and has served on many not-for-profit boards.   In 2009 Russell was awarded a Certificate of Outstanding Achievement by a Legal Practitioner by the Queensland Law Society, and in 2012 was named as Cairns Regional Council’s Citizen of the Year.

Appointed: October 2015
Current Term: 1 October 2023 - 30 September 2025

Robin Giason Fellow AMI, Fellow & Life Member, AITO, Member AICD
  • Deputy Chair
  • Independent Director

Rob brings 45 years of Tourism experience and leadership from across multiple and diverse Australian regions, including CEO Tourism Tropical North Queensland, CEO Tourism Tasmania & Director of Marketing, Destination New South Wales. He possesses a passion for regional communities and their positive development.  Rob is a Director of multiple not for profit Boards servicing the Indigenous Health, Charity and development sectors he is a Co-founder & Chair of Reef Restoration Foundation and also serves on the Australian Institute of Company Directors Far North Regional Forum.

Appointed: October 2020
Current Term: 1 October 2023 – 30 September 2027

Michael Clifford 
  • Independent Director

Michael is currently a Director on the Board of Australian Retirement Trust which is one of Australia's largest superannuation funds. He was a Director of Sunsuper from 2016 to 2022, serving as Deputy Chair during that time, and was also a Director of Intrust from 2013 to 2015.  Michael served as a Director and Deputy Chair of WorkCover from 2020 to 2023. He was General Secretary of the Queensland Council of Unions from 2019 - 2023 and Assistant Secretary from 2015 - 2019 and Queensland Secretary of the Finance Sector Union from 2001 - 2012.

Appointed: October 2023
Current Term: 1 October 2023 – 30 September 2027

John Hogg BSc
  • Independent Director
  • Chair, Audit and Risk Committee

John served the people of Queensland as a Senator in Federal Parliament for 18 years. During this period, John was heavily involved in parliamentary committees and enquiries. John also served as President of the Senate for 6 years.   John was previously the State Secretary of the Shop Distributive and Allied Employees’ Association (Queensland) for 15 years and was its President for 25 years. In these key leadership roles John was responsible for the strategic and financial management of the organisation as well as its governance.

Appointed: October 2018
Current Term: 1 October 2018 – 30 September 2025

Julia Leu MBA, BA, GradDipEd, GradDipComm, MAICD
  • Independent Director
  • Chair, Human Resources Committee

Julia Leu is a local council veteran with over 25 years’ experience and was Mayor of the Douglas Shire Council from 2014 until March 2020, following 6 years as an independent Councillor with Cairns Regional Council.  She is a passionate advocate for regional communities and has worked as a CEO and senior executive in community development, economic services and Indigenous education. Julia is currently a director on the Cairns Hinterland Hospital and Health Services Board, President of the Port Douglas Neighbourhood Centre and involved in a number of local community not-for-profit organisations.

Appointed: October 2020
Current Term: 1 October 2023 – 30 September 2025

Donna-Maree O'Connor BA (Econ), Dip Ed, MA, Grad Cert Management
  • Independent Director
  • Member, Human Resources Committee

Donna-Maree has significant management experience particularly in social and community services, most recently as Corporate Services Manager of COUCH Wellness Centre and previously as CEO and company secretary of Access Community Housing.  She chaired the Cairns Housing and Homelessness Network and was the inaugural Chair of the TAFE Qld Board.  Donna-Maree also has extensive experience across government, having worked for TAFE Qld, Cairns Regional Council, Public Prosecutions in the Justice Department and in Education.  She has a drive to improve our community and the lives of those who live here.

Appointed: October 2023
Current Term: 1 October 2023 – 30 September 2027

Margot Richardson FCPA, GAICD, FGIA, BEc / BA (Asian Studies), GDipFinPlan
  • Independent Director
  • Member, Audit and Risk Committee

Margot is a highly qualified and extremely motivated professional. Using her experience in industry as a CPA Public Accountant and CFO, Margot expanded her focus to include governance, directorships and organisational leadership.  She has worked with the communities of all the regions serviced by Ports North for the past 20 odd years. Margot has served on a number of boards including Dietitians Australia, RRR Women Qld and CEQ. She is currently a director for the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine and a large Indigenous Corporation, and is a member of the Queensland Ombudsman Audit and Risk Committee and the Aged Care Quality and Safety Advisory Council. Margot is passionate about creating great social and economic value for communities.

Appointed: October 2023
Current Term: 1 October 2023 – 30 September 2026

PORTS NORTH Executive Team

Richard Stevenson
Chief Executive Officer

Kevin Malone
General Manager Commercial

Chris Tabe
Chief Financial Officer

Paul Doyle
General Manager Strategy and External Relations

Jason Ledbury
General Manager Infrastructure and Technology

Risk Management & Compliance

Ports North has in place processes to identify, assess and manage risks to its operations to minimise the impact of unplanned events. This approach is articulated in its Risk Management Policy and Risk Management Framework which also provides for structured risk assessments to be undertaken and the development of risk treatment plans.

The Audit and Risk Committee oversees the implementation of the Risk Management and Internal Control Policy and Risk Management Framework and a strong internal control environment to protect Ports North’s interests. Safety and Environmental Management Frameworks, Financial Risks Policy, Fraud Control and Corruption Policy and Security and Emergency Plans address the associated specific risks.


Director remuneration is affected by the provisions of the Government Owned Corporations Act 1993.

Executive remuneration is approved by the Board in accordance with the Government shareholder guideline.

Remuneration policies for management and staff are overseen by the Human Resources Committee which operates under the Human Resources Committee Terms of Reference.

Ports North’s remuneration policies provide for a strategy that balances the needs of the organisation, individuals and shareholders. Policies recognise the need to contain costs to Ports North and optimise the return on Ports North’s investment in its people.

Board Committees

To increase its effectiveness the Board has established an Audit and Risk Committee, and a Human Resources Committee, each with terms of reference approved by the Board. Committee minutes are included in the papers for the next Board meeting and the Director chairing the Committee reports to the Board on matters addressed by the Committee.




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