Our Board

Our Board of Directors oversees our organisation’s policies, management and performance. The Board sets our strategic direction, and ensures we achieve our business and regulatory commitments.

Hunter Water’s Board of Directors has been appointed under the Hunter Water Act 1991. The Board comprises of up to nine members, including the Managing Director (Chief Executive Officer), Chairperson and seven independent Directors.

greg martin

Chair

Greg has 40 years of utilities experience, including previously serving as the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Australia’s largest energy provider, AGL.

Greg is currently Chairman of ASX-listed Iluka Resources Limited and of US OTC Markets-listed Mawson Infrastructure Inc.; Deputy Chair of Western Power and a Non-executive Director of ASX-listed Spark Infrastructure.

Greg was previously Chairman of the Sydney Desalination Plant, Prostar Capital, Everest Financial Group, NGC Holdings Limited (NZ), Empresa de Gas de la V Region S.A. (Chile), Kyungnam Energy Co. Limited (South Korea), and the NSW Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust.

Greg previously worked and lived in the Hunter as Manager of the former Newcastle Gas Company Limited.

Greg holds degrees in Economics and Law from the University of Sydney and University of Western Sydney respectively, is a Fellow of the Institute of Managers and Leaders, and a Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Darren Cleary

Managing Director

Darren has more than 25 years of experience working for utilities in the water sector, including in infrastructure planning, capital delivery and operations.

He leads the Executive Management Team and is responsible for the management and day-to-day operations of Hunter Water.

Darren is also a Director of the Committee for the Hunter, a member of the Faculty of Business and Law Advisory Board of the University of Newcastle, the Advisory Board for the Newcastle Institute of Energy & Resources, and the Utility Excellence Committee of the Water Services Association of Australia.

Prior to being appointed Managing Director, Darren held a number of executive roles at Hunter Water including Chief Investment Officer, Executive Manager of Strategy and Planning, and Chief Operating Officer.

Darren holds a Bachelor of Engineering (Environmental) with Honours from the University of New South Wales and a Masters of Engineering Management from the University of Technology Sydney.

Christine Feldmanis

Non-executive Director

Christine has more than 30 years of experience in the financial arena, spanning both government and private sectors, including in investment management, finance, accounting and risk management, legal and regulatory compliance, governance and business building (listed and unlisted financial products markets). She formerly held senior executive positions with firms including Deloitte, Elders Finance, Bankers Trust, NSW TCorp and Treasury Group.

Christine is a Non-executive Director and Chair of the Audit and Risk Committees of Omni Bridgeway Limited (ASX: OBL), Rabobank Australia Ltd and Utilities Trust Australia, and Chair of Bell Asset Management Limited. She has worked as a professional independent non-executive director since 2013 and her previous directorships have included Delta Electricity, Uniting Financial Services Limited, Netball NSW and Perpetual Equity Investments Company Limited.

Christine holds a Bachelor of Commerce, Master of Applied Finance and is a Justice of the Peace. She is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, Senior Fellow of the Financial Services Institute of Australasia, Trustee Fellow of the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia and a Certified Public Accountant.

Rod Harrison

Non-executive Director

Rod has more than 40 years of experience in industrial relations. Based in Newcastle, he has been involved in the shipbuilding, ship repair, major civil and mechanical construction industries and held senior roles at a regional, state and national level in the Australian coal industry. Rod is currently Principal Associate with Australian Business Lawyers & Advisors.

With 28 years of experience as a judicial officer, Rod held a dual commission as Deputy President of the NSW Industrial Relations Commission and the Australian Industrial Relations Commission (now the Fair Work Commission) and an occasional appointment to the Tasmanian Industrial Commission. Rod is widely recognised for his innovative and collaborative approach to workplace improvement.

Rod was the inaugural Chair of the University of Newcastle’s Human Resources, Employment Relations and Management Industry Advisory Group. He was also a member of the Establishment Board of the University of Newcastle Foundation and Chair of an advisory committee to the Newcastle Knights Limited.

Rod holds a Bachelor of Commerce and Doctor of Business (honoris causa) from the University of Newcastle.

Jayne drinkwater

Non-executive Director

Jayne brings a wealth of experience having held previous roles as Interim Chief Executive Officer nib New Zealand, Chief Marketing Officer and Chief Operating Officer at nib Health Funds, and as a senior executive in operations, information technology, customer service and marketing.

Jayne is currently a Non-executive Director of Greater Bank, Greater Charitable Foundation, Greater Investment Services, CBHS Corporate Health and a member of the University of Newcastle Faculty of Business and Law Advisory Board.

An experienced Director and Committee Chair, Jayne is currently Chair of the Greater Bank Board Remuneration Committee and a member of the Board Transformation Governance Committee and Succession Planning Committee.

An advocate for the Hunter region, Jayne has also held roles as Non-executive Director of the Newcastle Anglican Church Corporation, Hunter Economic Development Corporation, Hunter Sporting Venues Authority, Trustees of Church Property Anglican Diocese of Newcastle and Bishop Tyrrell Anglican College.

Jayne holds a Bachelor of Economics, a Master of Business Administration with merit and is a Graduate Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Michelle Vanzella

Non-executive Director

Michelle has an extensive combination of customer, marketing, digital, data and commercial legal skills built across multiple industries including technology, retail, property and financial services.

Michelle is currently an independent Non-executive Director of Collaborate Corporation Limited (ASX:CL8), holding roles as Chair of the Nomination and Remuneration Committee and member of the Audit & Risk Committee. She is also currently a Non-executive Director at Abbotsleigh School and Chair of the Strategic Planning Committee.

Michelle practised corporate and commercial law at Allens and has held senior executive positions with iconic Australian brands including Westfield, Suncorp and AAMI. She was also previously an independent Non-Executive Director of Canteen Australia and Chair of the People and Performance Committee.

Michelle holds a Bachelor of Economics, Bachelor of Laws with Honours and a Master of Business Administration and is a Graduate Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Michelle Board People 001

geoff crowe

Non-executive Director

Geoff was previously employed as Chief Executive Officer at Port of Newcastle. Geoff has experience in the ports, shipping, resources and logistics sectors, having held senior executive roles with Port Waratah Coal Services, BHP, Yancoal and Coal and Allied, among others.

Geoff is Chair of the University of Newcastle Faculty of Business and Law Advisory Board and a past director of the Hunter Business Chamber.

Geoff is an experienced executive and non-executive director with experience and skills gained in commercial, legal, operational, logistics, safety, projects, change management and strategy setting, having also been heavily involved in the coal industry’s development of the Capacity Framework Arrangement, as well as a past Director of the Hunter Valley Coal Chain Coordinator and Ports Australia.

Geoff holds a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Newcastle, is a Fellow of the Certified Practising Accountants Australia and Graduate Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

eric de rooy

Non-executive Director

Eric is a Water Industry Professional with over 40 years experience, predominantly with Sydney Water, ensuring the delivery of essential water-related products and service to over five million people. He operated as a key member of the Sydney Water executive team, and was directly accountable for the commercial, customer-focused operations and compliance outcomes for the organisation. Eric has extensive experience and skills in asset management/investment, strategic business planning, business development and risk management.

Eric was previously an appointed member of Dam Safety NSW, helping to govern the introduction of the new regulatory approach to Dams Safety on behalf of the public of NSW. He is also a Non-Executive Director for Scripture Union NSW (Religious Charity), operating as Deputy Chair of the Board, Chair of the Finance and Audit Committee and member of the Risk Working Group.

Julie Savet Ward

Non-executive Director

Julie has over 25 years’ experience on government, private sector and not-for-profit boards, including significant experience as a chairperson. Julie was a member of the NSW Environment Protection Authority board for nine years until December 2020. Julie is also a non-executive director of Australasian management consulting company, Morrison Low.

Julie has an environmental planning, assessment and management background of over 35 years’ experience in the planning, construction, management, determination and delivery of large-scale infrastructure and property projects. She has significant experience and a deep passion for water infrastructure. Julie is also a State member of the Sydney North Planning Panel determining regionally significant development applications of $30-100m in value.

Julie has a Bachelor of Science in Applied Physical Geography, with Honours, and a Master of Landscape Planning both from the University of New South Wales. In 1998, Julie was a finalist in the Telstra Business Women’s Awards and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.


Leadership team

Learn more about Hunter Water's Executive Leadership team who are leading the way.