Meet the Authority

Independent chair

Russell Reichelt, MEMA Chair

Dr Russell Reichelt

Dr Reichelt recognises that a sustainable ocean economy relies on a healthy ocean. He has extensive experience in marine science, policy and management, particularly in marine parks, tourism and fisheries. During his 11 years as Chairman of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority he built partnerships with numerous government departments, tourism, farming, local government, traditional owners, scientific agencies and the not-for-profit sector.

Dr Reichelt is currently a board member of the Australian Maritime Safety Authority which enables safe shipping and saves lives at sea in a Search and Rescue Region that covers 10% of the earth’s surface. He is the Australian Prime Minister’s representative on the High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy – a 14 country consortium committed to both a healthy ocean and sustainable ocean economy. He has been a board member of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation for 15 years and recently joined the board of the Climate Change Authority.

He has chaired Australia’s Fisheries Research and Development Corporation and the National Oceans Advisory Group that advised a panel of five Australian cabinet ministers on establishing the world’s first oceans policy. He chaired CSIRO's Wealth from Oceans Flagship Advisory Committee.

Dr Reichelt’s technical background is marine science, numerical modelling and remote sensing of ocean processes, ocean policy and management for conservation and sustainable use. More recently Russell led development of a new reporting mechanism for the Great Barrier Reef (the GBR Outlook Report) which has been legislated in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Act and adopted by the national State of the Environment Committee and UNESCO’S World Heritage Centre for all World Heritage Sites listed for natural values.

He is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Queensland, James Cook University and Queensland University of Technology; and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences & Engineering; Fellow of the Institute of Marine Engineering, Science and Technology (UK) and Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Authority members

Anthea Tinney

Exofficio members

  • Secretary, Department of Industry
    (delegated to Director General, Department of Primary Industries)
  • Chief Executive, Office of Environment and Heritage
  • Secretary, Department of Planning and Environment
  • Secretary, Transport for NSW

Page last updated/reviewed: 23 Sep 2019