PROMINENT BUSINESSWOMAN TAKES THE REIGNS AS CHAIR OF PORT OF TOWNSVILLE The Palaszczuk Government has appointed one of Queensland’s most respected businesswomen, Renita Garard as the new Chair of the Port of Townsville. In a statement released earlier today, Acting Premier Curtis Pitt said that Ms Garard was being appointed at a pivotal time in Port of Townsville Limited’s (POTL) 150 year history, as it embarks upon a strategically important phase of growth and expansion. “Ms Garard brings a wealth of commercial and leadership experience to the Board, having provided financial and taxation advisory services through senior roles with leading professional services firms for more than fifteen years,” Mr Pitt said. “She is currently a Director with PwC Australia, LifeTec and Northern Australia Primary Health. “Her strong board experience includes serving as Chair of the Hockey Australia Athletes Committee and as an Executive Board Member of the International Hockey Federation. “She will be a great addition to POTL at a key point in its history and I wish her well in this new role.” Mr Pitt said the proportion of women on the board of public agencies continues to be a key focus for the Palaszczuk Government. “We continue to increase the number of women board members on Queensland GOCs, in line with our election commitment of 50 per cent representation by 2020,” he said. Ms Garard said that she was delighted with her appointment as Chair of POTL and looked forward to utilising her experience to the benefit of the Townsville Port as it embarks upon the next phase of its expansion plans. “The Townsville port, which has been in operation for more than 150 years, is truly North Australia’s freight gateway to the world”, she said. “I look forward to working with the experienced port team as they navigate this crucial next phase of expansion to provide the capacity required to develop Northern Australia to its full potential.” The appointment of Ms Garard follows Mr Patrick Brady’s retirement as Chairman of the organisation effective 30 September 2015. Mr Brady joined the Board of POTL in December 2012, and served as Chairman since December 2013. Mr Brady said that during that time he has seen the organisation continue to grow, strengthen relationships with customers and the community, as well as establish important new international relationships. “It has been a privilege to serve as Chairman of POTL and I am proud of the work we have done over the last few years. I am confident that the foundations for growth in terms of capital investments, trade relationships and customer and community engagement have been strongly reinforced, Mr Brady said. “I would like to thank my fellow Directors, the executive team and staff for their professionalism and their passion for developing and growing the port and the region.” POTL Chief Executive Officer Ranee Crosby welcomed Ms Garard’s appointment, and thanked Mr Brady for his service to the organisation.