Brisbane 2033: Legacy Project

December 2020 Newsletter

December 2020 Newsletter

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Best wishes for the season

Welcome to our bumper, final edition of the e-newsletter for 2020. Thanks for your support during this tough year and we wish you a safe and happy festive season – we all deserve it!

Here’s a few images from a challenging but ultimately successful year for the Committee for Brisbane.

New Member on the Advisory Council

The Committee for Brisbane is delighted to welcome its newest Advisory Council member, Kate Jones, most recently Queensland Minister for Innovation and Tourism Industry Development and Minister for Cross River Rail and newly appointed to the Australian Rugby League Commission.

Kate joins the Advisory Council as it turns its mind to the big issues and ideas for the Committee in 2021 and beyond.

We also extend our sincere thanks to retiring Advisory Council Members Jude Turner and Bill Grant who have shared their time and expertise over the past two years.

Our Advisory Council members are:

  • Chair: Steve Wilson AM, Chairman, Racing Queensland
  • Delvene Cockatoo-Collins, artist and Quandamooka woman
  • Eddie Scuderi, Partner, Intellectual Property, Technology and Competition, Corrs Chambers Westgarth
  • Harvey Lister, Chairman and CEO, ASM Global (Asia Pacific)
  • Professor Ian Frazer AC, CEO and Director of Research, Translational Research Centre
  • Jason Scott, Managing Director, News Ltd Qld, NNSW & NT
  • Julieanne Alroe, Chair, Infrastructure Australia
  • Li Cunxin AO, Artistic Director, Queensland Ballet
  • Peter Varghese AO, Chancellor, University of Queensland
  • Raynuha Sinnathamby, Managing Director, Springfield City Group
  • Rosemary Vilgan, Non-executive Director
  • Sue Johnson, Group Executive Queensland, Transurban
  • Tracy Stockwell OAM, Deputy Chair, Swimming Australia
  • Trevor St Baker AO, Founder and Deputy Chairman, St Baker Energy Innovation Fund


New faces on the Management Committee

The 10 November Annual General Meeting saw the first contested ballot, in memory, for positions on the Management Committee – a very healthy sign of interest in the Committee.

The Committee Executive were all re-elected unopposed for a further term of one year:
• President: Mike Gillen, Director – Cities, AECOM
• Vice-President: Kylie Blucher, Managing Director, Nine Qld and Nine Northern NSW
• Vice-President: Peter Kelly, Executive Director, Three Plus
• Secretary: Liana Heath, Queensland Manager, Asialink Business
• Treasurer: Paul Gallagher, Partner, Audit and Assurance, BDO

The Immediate Past-President is automatically an ex-officio Member of the Management Committee and Brendan Christou was re-appointed for a further term of one year.

20 nominations were received for 10 Member positions on the Management Committee and a secret ballot was conducted to elect the successful candidates:

New Management Committee Members:
• Heidi Cooper, Head of Public Affairs Qld and Group Strategic Projects, Transurban
• Debbie Smith, Managing Partner, PwC Brisbane
• Kate Meyrick, Director, Urbis Future State
• Kelvin Dodt, Chief Operating Officer, Treasury Brisbane, The Star Entertainment Group

Re-elected Members:
• Paul Turner, Chief Communication Officer, RACQ
• Martin Ryan, Executive General Manager – Commercial, Brisbane Airport Corporation
• Steve Wilson AM, Chairman, Racing Queensland
• Kristan Conlon, Partner, McCullough Robertson Lawyers
• Dai Gwynne-Jones, Director, Portfolio Design Group
• David Hertweck, Senior Manager, Environment and Planning, Port of Brisbane

The President thanked all candidates and invited the unsuccessful nominees to continue to play an active role with the Committee for Brisbane through its various Sub-Committees and Taskforces.

Our thanks to retiring Management Committee Members Michelle Lee, Ben Lyons, Chris McCluskey, Gavan Ranger, Gavin Adams and Nick Davy.

A new Constitution

The Annual General Meeting unanimously approved a range of important revisions to the Constitution, including a reduction in the number of members on the Management Committee (which will take effect at the 2021 AGM) and a restructuring of the classes of members.

Relevant documents have been lodged with the Office of Fair Trading and the Committee hopes to receive formal approval of the changes early in the New Year.

To see the proposed new Constitution, please contact us via

What should be the legacies from the Olympic and Paralympic Games?

Within the next couple of weeks, the Committee will present a Legacy Paper to the Federal and State Governments and the Council of Mayors (South East Queensland).

The Committee for Brisbane is a strong supporter of the candidature for 2032 and determined some time ago that the role it would play is to propose and advocate for the benefits to the community that should come from hosting the Games.

Through the hard work and dedication of our Brisbane 2033: Olympics and Paralympics Legacy Taskforce and our smaller Steering Committee, we have developed a document that is bold and aspirational and proposes a wide range of legacies for south east Queensland, under the Committee’s four key themes of connectivity, creativity, enterprise and equity.

The Taskforce met on 26 November to finalise the Legacy Paper which the Committee proposes to publicly release in the New Year, once relevant politicians have been briefed.

The “big picture” outcomes that we have settled on to drive a suite of goals in the Legacy Paper are:

1. Connected: People and ideas can move easily around our region: anywhere, anytime, anyhow.

2. Creative: First Nations and contemporary cultures are celebrated contributors to our community wellbeing and economic vitality.

3. Enterprising: Our regional economic ecosystems are founded upon knowledge, innovation and entrepreneurship, delivered via structured government, business and community collaboration.

4. Equitable: All residents of our region have the same opportunities in life.

Our sincere thanks, particularly, to the Steering Committee:
• Catherin Bull AM, Emeritus Professor of Landscape Architecture, University of Melbourne
• Craig Fenton, Partner, Consulting, PwC (who replaced Steering Committee member Emma Thomas who is the new CEO of Sunshine Coast Regional Council)
• James Hepburn, city making consultant
• Kate Meyrick, Director, Urbis Future State
• Meredith Hartigan, Associate Town Planner, Tract
• Mike Gillen, Director, Cities, AECOM
• Nick Kennedy, Associate, Three Plus
• Paul Allan, Client Development Leader, Arcadis
• Peter Edwards, Director, Archipelago Architects

Tackling homelessness

The Committee for Brisbane has agreed to work with an exciting new project to tackle homelessness in our region – the Housing Action Lab.

The Committee has had the issue of homelessness on its agenda for some time as it looked for ways that our organisation and Members could play a constructive and supportive role.

While a number of Members already contribute their own resources to solutions to homelessness, the Committee was keen to also take a leadership role.

COVID meant that plans we had for a significant event on homelessness in mid-2020 had to be re-thought, but we are now very pleased to partner with the Housing Action Lab on a project it has initiated to address aspects of homelessness in our region (and beyond).

QShelter is providing seed funding for this project that will bring together business and community leaders to answer: “What transformative actions can we take together today to deliver the housing solutions of tomorrow, creating prosperity for all ages and life stages?”.

The Committee for Brisbane identified that the best way it could support HAL was to tap into our membership and identify motivated members who either have homelessness action as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility agenda, or who would like to contribute meaningfully to tackling this issue.

In mid-November, more than a dozen members attended a briefing from HAL and Business Models Inc whose strategic planning methodology will be used to assess, challenge and resolve aspects of homelessness.

We hope that, prior to Christmas, a number of Members will have joined the project to help end homelessness in our region.

Addressing homelessness in response to COVID-19

BHC Creating Liveable Communities is an Affiliate of the Committee for Brisbane and a Partner in the Housing Action Lab. We invited them to set down some of their thoughts and suggestions for addressing this challenge.

On any given night in Australia, one in every 200 people are homeless. That is 116,000 Australians who recorded in 2016 on census night that they do not have secure housing.

These are sobering statistics and numbers that are only set to increase.

This year, the drastic measures undertaken to contain COVID-19, including the rehousing of rough sleepers, has highlighted the essential need and basic human right for everyone to have a secure place to go to.

The pandemic has created an opportunity for us to come together and start to change our housing system so that we can all be guaranteed a roof over our heads.

We want to continue to shine a light on homelessness and work towards creating sustainable solutions to this complex problem, including:

1. Continuing to raise awareness of homelessness with people outside the usual circles and existing sector supporters.

The health crisis has certainly elevated action on rough sleepers- however these are just the visibly homeless, not those couch surfing or those living in overcrowded dwellings. The general public, corporates and industries outside our own can have aligned interests, important connections and perspectives as well as great influence in sharing the story and building support.

Throughout the pandemic, we have witnessed overwhelming support from Australia’s leading economists and many of the “unusual suspects” who wanted to see a social and affordable housing led economic recovery.

This media coverage and increased public support has no doubt helped Victoria’s recent historic investment in social housing get over the line. We need much more of it and we don’t want to lose the momentum we have.

2. Creating an affordable housing delivery model that is coordinated, strategic, and ongoing- that is delivered in partnership with all levels of government.

We understand the critical role the federal and state government can play, but local government land can also offer a huge boost or in-kind support through planning system reprieves.

We need to see funding delivered based on a bipartisan national housing strategy with the recognition that homelessness is everybody’s problem and it’s in everybody’s interests to get together and solve it as a team.

3. Developing better integration between the housing, homelessness and support service systems.

This ensures that people in need of a home can access the type of home that is appropriate for their needs.

A home that has the right supports at the right time to assist them to live successfully and with dignity, and start to build independence, wellbeing and inclusion.

Every Australian deserves the opportunity to have a safe and secure place to call home.

The changes we need to make are not necessarily simple to achieve. However, if we have learnt one thing from COVID it must be that what at one time seemed impossible, can be achieved when there is necessity and the will to do it.

Our Affiliates know how to party!

More than 40 people from our Affiliates and Friends network gathered at Howard Smith Wharves recently to share food, drinks and stories.

Many had only previously met via Zoom meetings during 2020, so there was a lot of catching up to do.

It was a vibrant, positive afternoon and the consensus was that we “have to do it again!”, which we will.

Pleasingly, a number of the Committee’s Affiliates were represented by several of their executive or members:

  • AI Group
  • Smart Cities Council, Australia New Zealand
  • Brisbane Junior Chamber of Commerce
  • Planning Institute of Australia
  • Infrastructure Association Queensland
  • Brisbane Festival
  • Queensland Music Festival
  • Council of Mayors (South East Queensland)
  • Property Leaders Brisbane
  • Heavy Vehicle Industry Australia
  • Queensland Performing Arts Centre
  • Civil Contractors Federation – Qld
  • Australian Institute of Architects
  • Brisbane West Chamber of Commerce

The Affiliate category of membership was established in mid-2020 as an initiative to expand engagement with other business leaders and to link with peak bodies, industry associations and not-for-profits that share an interest in our region.

The response was overwhelming and we now have 28 organisations as Affiliates.

Presentation to our Life Members

Life members image above:
(Left to right): Henry George, John Neylan, Rebecca Sullivan, Chris McCluskey, Steve Reynolds, CFB President Mike Gillen, Mark Doonar, Michelle Lee, Matthew Miller, Ben Lyons, Chris Skelton, Noel Robinson. Absent: Brendan Christou.

After the Committee’s recent AGM we held a special event to celebrate and recognise our Life Members.

Life Membership is offered to Past Presidents and others who have provided outstanding commitment through active involvement in the activities of the Association, over a number of years.

With our name change from the Brisbane Development Association to the Committee for Brisbane a couple of years ago, we wanted to confirm to our Life Members that the honour remained in place and to recognise that with a small token of our esteem.

Committee for Brisbane Life Membership certificates were presented to 12 Life Members, and have been forwarded on to three others who were not able to join us on the night: John Pettit, Ted Stewart and The Hon Justice David Thomas.


Welcome to new Members

The Committee welcomed five new members over the past month:

– Populous

– Bennett and Bennett

– Doug Flockhart
– Dr Jane Wilson


  • Australian-Israel Chamber of Commerce

Christmas office closure

The Committee for Brisbane will close at COB on 24 December and reopen on Monday 4 January.

Thank you

We want to say thank you to some special Members and partners whose support and advice has been welcome throughout 2020:

  • Event venue partner: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre
  • On-line event hosts and logistics: Struber
  • Legal advice: McCullough Robertson Lawyers
  • Bookkeeping and our office host (what a great landlord!): BDO
  • Graphic design and website support: Portfolio Creative Design

And our Members and friends who opened their doors during COVID and safely hosted many meetings and forums for us this year:

  • BDO
  • PwC
  • McCullough Robertson Lawyers
  • Corrs Chambers Westgarth
  • The Star Entertainment Group
  • Transurban
  • Urbis
  • B-EDA at the Capital

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The Committee For Brisbane acknowledges the First Nations People of the region and their continuing connection to and care of the land, waters and community of that region.
We also pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.

Photos by Tony Elsom