Our Board

The Chairman and board members are chosen by the Federal Minister for the Environment and are appointed by the Governor General.

The board meets on average four times a year.

The role of board members is to ensure the efficient and effective performance of the legislative functions of the Authority, consistent with the government's expectations in regards to performance, objectives, values and broader government policies. 

Discussions by the board are focused on broad policy and legislative matters, while responsibility for operational matters (including permit and development applications) rests with senior management.

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Act 1975 requires that board members have qualifications and extensive experience in a field related to the functions of the Authority. It also requires that one of the board members be nominated by the Queensland Government, that one member be Indigenous with knowledge of Indigenous issues in the Marine Park, and that one member have tourism industry expertise.

A summary of Marine Park Authority decisions is provided after each meeting.

MPA Board Members

Dr Russell Reichelt FTSE
GBRMPA Chairman, Ruseell Reichelt

Chairman of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority

Russell Reichelt joined GBRMPA in 2007 as Chairman and Chief Executive. Dr Reichelt is a board member of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation and the Australian Maritime Safety Authority. He began diving on the Great Barrier Reef in 1968 and worked as a research scientist at the Australian Institute of Marine Science in the 1980s studying the ecology of coral reefs, particularly the crown-of-thorns starfish.

He has a PhD in marine science and has served as CEO of the Australian Institute of Marine Science, Chairman of the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation, and as a member of Australia’s State of the Environment Committee.

He has previously chaired the National Oceans Advisory Group, CSIRO's Wealth from Oceans Flagship Advisory Committee and Seafood Services Australia Ltd.

He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering; the Institute of Marine Engineering, Science and Technology (UK) and the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Honorary positions: Adjunct Professor in the College of Marine and Environmental Sciences at James Cook University, and at the University of Queensland.

Melissa George
Melissa George photo

Melissa George is a Wulgurukaba woman whose traditional area includes Magnetic Island and the greater Townsville region.

She has been actively involved in protecting and managing land and sea through community natural resource management projects and liaising with and advising the Queensland and Australian governments. Ms George has been a member of the Indigenous Advisory Committee (EPBC Act 1999) since 2002 and Chair since 2006.

She was appointed as a member of the Authority on 29 August 2008 for a four-year term, and was reappointed on 22 November 2012 for a five-year term concluding on 21 November 2017.

Tony Mooney
Tony Mooney photo

Tony Mooney has extensive experience in infrastructure, economic development, community engagement and regional government.

He served as a Townsville City councillor for 31 years, 19 of them as Mayor, concluding in 2008. During his time as Mayor, he oversaw a period of unprecedented sustainable urban and infrastructure development. In 2008, Mr Mooney was appointed to the Board of Ergon Energy, and in 2009, was appointed to the Board of Townsville Enterprise Limited. Mr Mooney received a Centenary Medal in 2001 for distinguished service to local government, and in 2011, was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia for service to local government and to the community of Townsville through a range of tourism, business and infrastructure organisations.

He was appointed as a member of the Authority on 7 December 2011, for a five-year term which finishes on 6 December 2016.

Queensland Government representative 

The Queensland Government representative is yet to be appointed. 

Margie McKenzie
Margie McKenzie
Margie McKenzie brings extensive experience of the Queensland marine tourism industry. She is currently the managing director of a marine tourism consulting company in Cairns, has been a scuba diving instructor for 29 years and is still an active Instructor Certifier with Scuba Schools International (SSI).  Mrs McKenzie has been a partner in one of Australia’s largest dive training companies based in Cairns, has been the general manager of Dive QLD, a non-profit association committed to promoting and developing the diving industry in Queensland for 17 years and spent seven years as the general manager of SSI. Mrs McKenzie is a CPA and has specialised in assisting tourism and small business’ in developing into profitable enterprises.

She was appointed as a member of the Authority on 16 May 2013 for a five year term concluding on 15 May 2018.

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    Reef Guardian schools across Queensland are taking positive action for the environment. Watch the commercial.