LMA Chairs and project team – October, 2016

Back row (L-R): Mario Barbagallo (Burdekin-Haughton), Luke Stower (St George), Maurie Maughan (Bundaberg), Joe Moro (Mareeba-Dimbulah), Elizabeth (Liz) Alexander (Theodore), Rober Speed (project team General Manager, Annette (Netty) Smith (Emerald), Geoff Wormwell (Lower Mary) Lee Blackburn (Eton) and John Orange (project team Commercial Advisor).


Each channel irrigation scheme has a board set up to represent the interests of customers and negotiate with government on their behalf.

Emerald, Eton, St George and Theodore Transition boards will further consider the transfer of SunWater’s irrigation channels to local irrigators. Bundaberg, the Burdekin-Haughton, Mareeba Dimbulah and the Lower Mary investigation schemes will prepare an updated business proposal on how the schemes could be managed by irrigator-owned entities in a business proposal.

Advertisements for expressions of interest for the eight boards were published in early 2016 and the boards, which include at least two independent members, were appointed in September 2016.

The boards for each of the schemes are listed in the table below. An overview of each scheme is available on this website on the dedicated scheme page accessed by clicking on the relevant tab at the top of this page.

 Scheme Board type Members
Bundaberg  Investigation board Maurie Maughan (Chair), irrigators Mark Mammino, experienced business and accounting professional Lynn Smart, finance and water executive Peter Borrows, CEO of Bundaberg Canegrowers Dale Holliss and former SunWater manager Phil Miller.
Burdekin-Haughton  Investigation board Irrigator Mario Barbagallo (Chair), local irrigators, Mauro Garbuio, engineers,  Peter Gilbey and Dan Coutts,  farm manager and agronomist, Evan Shannon, and Sucrogen’s farms general manager, Ian Davies.
Eton  Transition board Irrigator Lee Blackburn  (Chair), local irrigators, John Muscat and Jo Prior, former SunWater manager Tom Wallwork and engineer/former manager of the Pioneer Valley Water Board, John Palmer.
Emerald  Transition board Financial experts, Anne-Marie O'Callaghan (A/Chair) and David McDougall and local irrigators Ross Burnett, Peter Galea and Hamish Millar.

Lower Mary

Investigation board Agribusiness consultant Geoffrey Wormwell (Chair), irrigator, Allen Birt, financial expert Bernie Wilson,  water engineer, Trevor Dean and General Manager - Agriculture for MSF Sugar, Stewart Norton and agribusiness specialist, Warwick Yates.
Mareeba-Dimbulah  Investigation board Horticulturist Joe Moro (Chair), irrigator Maryann Salvetti, experienced water resources manager, Murray Smith, former finance executive Graham Kirkwood, local businessman and former SunWater engineer, Brett Stevenson.
St George  Transition board CPA qualified agricultural business manager, Luke Stower (Chair), irrigators, Scott Armstrong, David Moon and Glen Price and former managing partner of Minter Ellison, Ross Landsberg.
Theodore  Transition board Rural business consultant Malcolm Finlayson (Chair), irrigators, Greg Austin, Kirk Anderson and Peter French, specialist water engineer, Ed Donohue and communication specialist Sarah Cox.