IMAS Board

Role of the Board

The role of the IMAS Board is to:

Professor Mary O'Kane (IMAS Board Chair)

Professor Mary O'Kane is Executive Chair of Mary O'Kane & Associates Pty Ltd, a Sydney-based company specialising in major government and research reviews.

Professor O’Kane is also the New South Wales Chief Scientist & Engineer and a company director being Chair of the Development Gateway and the Development Gateway International, Chair of the Cooperative Research Centre for Spatial Information, and a director of PSMA Ltd, Business Events Sydney, National ICT Australia Ltd, and the Capital Markets Cooperative Research Centre. She is also a trustee of the New Zealand Antarctic Research Institute and a member of the DSTO Advisory Board.

Professor O’Kane was Vice-Chancellor of the University of Adelaide from 1996-2001. She was formerly Chair of the Australian Centre for Renewable Energy and is a former member of the Australian Research Council, the Co-operative Research Centres (CRC) Committee, the Tax Concession Committee, the board of the CSIRO, and the board of F.H. Faulding & Co Ltd. She is a Fellow of the Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering and an honorary Fellow of Engineers Australia.

In 2016, Professor O’Kane was recognised as one of Australia’s leading scientific experts and consultants when she was made a companion of the Order of Australia for her eminent service to the field.

Professor Richard Coleman

Professor Coleman is Executive Director, IMAS and Pro-Vice Chancellor (Research Collaborations and Infrastructure) in the Office of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research), University of Tasmania.

He also is Director of the Antarctic Gateway Partnership, which in November 2014 was awarded Australian Research Council funding of $24 million over three years. This is a capacity-building development that will further enhance Tasmania as a global leader in Antarctic and Southern Ocean science and a gateway for Antarctic research, education, innovation and logistics.

His research covers the areas of geodesy, physical oceanography and glaciology, focusing on understanding the role of the oceans and cryosphere in the global climate system using observations, theory and modelling. The research projects involve the use of satellite altimeter data to improve our understanding of ocean change and variability, especially in the Southern Ocean, Antarctic ice shelf dynamics and ice shelf-ocean processes.

In a career as a researcher and academic spanning more than 30 years, Professor Coleman has held positions at The University of NSW, the Research School of Earth Sciences, Australian National University; and The University of Sydney.

From July 2009 to September 2012, he was Executive Director (Physical, Mathematical and Information Sciences) at the Australian Research Council, responsible for delivery of policy and programs to fund and advance Australian research.

Dr John Whittington

Dr John Whittington is Secretary of that Tasmanian Department of Primary Industries, Water and Environment (DPIPWE).

Dr Whittington has a strong science background with a PhD in plant biology from the University of Adelaide. He worked for CSIRO and in various universities around the world before joining the Tasmanian public service 13 years ago.

Since then Dr Whittington has worked in water resources and resource management generally.  He has high level skills in managing multi-disciplinary teams, managing financial resources and delivering diverse business requirements and for five years prior to the DPIPWE appointment, led the government's expansion of aquaculture and irrigation in the state.

Professor Brigid Heywood

Professor Brigid Heywood holds the position of Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) at the University of Tasmania.

Prior to this appointment, Professor Heywood served as Assistant Vice-Chancellor of Research, Academic and Enterprise from 2011-2015 at Massey University in New Zealand. During her time there, she led the development and implementation of the strategies, policies and standards that underpin that university's research and teaching effort. Prior to her post in New Zealand, Professor Heywood held the office of Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise at England's Open University, the largest in the United Kingdom.

Professor Heywood completed her BSc (Hons) in Biological Sciences at Manchester University and received her PhD from Liverpool University, where she specialised in studies of biomineralisation. Her research career focused upon the translation of the knowledge acquired from the study of crystal growth to such divergent fields as clinical medicine, materials science, particle engineering and earth systems research.

She was appointed to a personal chair in chemistry at the age of 33 at Keele University in Staffordshire, where she subsequently held positions including Director of the Office of Research and Enterprise, Head of the School of Chemistry and Physics and Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise.

Dr Nick Gales

Dr Nick Gales is the Director of the Australian Antarctic Division.

Dr Gales has been involved in marine mammal research and management since 1980. He started his career as veterinarian/curator at a zoological marine park in Western Australia, and after a few years moved into a research career, working initially on the biology of Antarctic seals at Heard Island and overwintering at Davis Station, Antarctica in 1986.

After this, Dr Gales completed his doctoral research on the population biology of Australian sea lions in Western and South Australia. During this time, he was also responsible for designing and conducting a major, world-first, marine mammal release program from a defunct captive display facility. For the next four years Dr Gales headed the New Zealand Department of Conservation's marine mammal research program where he was responsible for researching and managing marine mammal populations in the face of threats from fishing and tourism around New Zealand and its sub-antarctic islands, as well as issues associated with the International Whaling Commission (IWC).

In 2001, Dr Gales started work with the Australian Antarctic Division. Here he has led the Australian Marine Mammal Centre and is responsible for all technical and scientific aspects of the Australian Government's responsibilities for the management of marine mammals in Australian and Antarctica. This work includes heading up the Australian science delegation at the IWC, leading Australian marine mammal research in Antarctica, and the management of interactions of whales and other marine mammals with the oil and gas industry, fisheries and tourism. He was appointed Chief Scientist in early 2012.

Dr Gales has published more than 100 scientific papers. His key research interest is the conduct of applied marine mammal research and its delivery into management and policy.

Dr Gales is a Board member of the International Society of Marine Mammalogy and the Australasian coordinator of the IUCN Cetacean Specialist Group.

Professor Brian Yates

Professor Brian Yates was appointed as the Dean of the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Technology in July 2015.

Professor Yates is a researcher with an international reputation for computational chemistry, and a highly commended teacher.

He was an Executive Director (Engineering, Mathematical and Information Sciences) at the Australian Research Council from 2013 to 2015. In this role, Professor Yates helped to develop new initiatives within the ARC to support research excellence in Australia, as well as overseeing grant awarding processes and a major information technology development project.

A University of Tasmania alumnus, Professor Yates was Head of Chemistry from 2006-2010 and also had a University-wide role as Deputy Chair of Academic Senate (2011-2012). In 2006 he was honoured with the Carrick National Teaching Award for the Physical Sciences and in 2010 he was awarded the Vice-Chancellor's Individual Citation for Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning.

He led the School of Chemistry through a challenging period and he has returned with a vision for the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Technology which will see it building on its own strengths in research and teaching. Just as importantly, he understands the vital connectedness between the University and the state of Tasmania.

Mr Greg Johannes

Mr Greg Johannes is Head of the Tasmanian State Service and Secretary of the Department of Premier and Cabinet. He has undertaken a wide range of senior executive roles in the Australian public and private sectors.

Over the last ten years Mr Johannes work has included major work on public policy development, climate change and natural resource management, and he has been the chair or director of a number of boards in the research and community sectors.

In 2015, Mr Johannes was made a National Fellow of the Institute of Public Administration Australia for his outstanding contribution to the Institute, and the public sector profession, over many years.

Mr Martin Exel

Mr Martin Exel is the General Manager Environment and Policy with Austral Fisheries one of Australia’s largest seafood industry companies which specializes in wild catch fisheries. He is also the President of the Coalition of Legal Toothfish Operators (COLTO), and has been an official observer at CCAMLR (Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources) for the past 15 years.

Mr Exel also holds a number of representative positions in the fishing industry, including Chair of the Commonwealth Fisheries Association and member of several Management Advisory Committees and Research Advisory Groups. His work in fisheries over the past 30 years has encompassed commercial fishing in New Zealand and Australia, and employment in various Commonwealth-based management roles, including General Manager Fisheries for the Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) from 1991 to 1996.

Mr Exel holds a BSc (Zoology) from New Zealand and a postgraduate Diploma in Fisheries Technology from the Australian Maritime College.

Neil Stump

Mr Neil Stump

Mr Neil Stump served as Chief Executive of the Tasmanian Seafood Industry Council from 2006-2015. Prior to taking on that role, Mr Stump was a commercial fisher operating principally in the Tasmanian rock lobster fishery for 20 years. He is currently Acting Executive Officer for Oysters Tasmania and is a director of Marine and Safety Tasmania.

Mr Stump has formal qualifications from the Australian Maritime College Bachelor of Applied Science (Fisheries) and the University of Tasmania Bachelor of Science (Hons) and Master of Environmental Studies.

Warwick Smith

Hon. Warwick Smith

Warwick Smith is a senior executive of the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (‘ANZ’); Chairman of the Board, ANZ Greater China and Chairman, New South Wales & Australian Capital Territory; Chairman of the Advisory Board of Australian Capital Equity: holders of interests in Seven Group Holdings Limited and Coates Hire (on which both Boards he is a Director), West Australian News, WesTrac and Caterpillar industrial services and equipment in Western Australia, New South Wales and North East China; Chairman of the Flagship Property Group and a range of companies in Hong Kong and China. He is Chairman of the Australia–China Council and Global Trustee of the Asia Society; Deputy Chair of Committee for Sydney and Chairman of the Financial Services Knowledge Hub for NSW. Recently, he completed a review of the Federal Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development and a report on the Feasibility of a Second Tasmanian Interconnector and completed a review of the Federal Department of Finance and a review of the Contestability of Members of Parliamentary Services and is currently undertaking an Independent Review of the Regional Development Australia Programme.

Formerly, Mr Smith was National President of the Australia China Business Council; Chairman of E*TRADE Limited, the Australian Sports Commission and an Executive Director with Macquarie Bank for 10 years; and a Federal Government Minister with a parliamentary career spanning 15 years, representing Tasmania. During his time as Shadow Minister, he was Spokesman on Energy and Science and involved in Antarctica matters and maintains a deep interest. He was Australia's first Telecommunications Ombudsman and has received a Centenary Medal and an Order of Australia. He studied law, history and political science at Australian National University and the University of Tasmania; gaining a Bachelor of Laws University of Tasmania in 1979. He was also a member of the Tasmanian University Council from 1 July 1993 to 23 May 1996. He was a Partner in Tasmanian legal firm, Douglas & Collins and was also a visiting lecturer in Maritime Law at the Australian Maritime College.He was educated in Launceston and the United States.

Authorised by the Executive Director, Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies
April 12, 2017