Speculation about a new board for the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) is over with the announcement of the new board over the summer holiday period.
The new Board of Directors, including four existing directors and seven new ones, will oversee the critical work of the NDIA delivering the roll out of the NDIS around the country.
NDIA Chair Bruce Bonyhady has been replaced by Dr Helen Nugent. Dr Nugent has senior experience in the financial services, health, energy, resources, education and arts sectors.
Many Every Australian Counts supporters were concerned about plans to replace all board members and have no representatives with lived disability experience. Hundreds sent messages to state ministers to voice their concerns.
It appears that these concerns have been heard, at least to some degree. Minister Christian Porter said the new Board would:
“Combine high level experience in governance, finance, risk management and insurance; together with lived experience of disability to provide confidence to the sector that the NDIS will be expertly overseen to deliver for people with disability, their families and carers.
“The fact that the new Board provides the right blend of skills and experience is evidenced by the fact that four of the Board members have lived experience of disability whilst other members have long involvement in the disability sector,” Minister Porter said.
Other new members of the Board are:
- Ms Sandra Birkensleigh: A member of the Reserve Bank of Australia’s audit committee and the Sunshine Coast Children’s Therapy Centre with extensive experience in financial services, risk management and compliance.
- Ms Robyn Kruk AM: Deputy Chair of Mental Health Australia, who has held numerous senior roles in government bodies, including establishing and working as the inaugural CEO of the National Mental Health Commission.
- Mr John Langoulant AO: Former Under Treasurer of the West Australian Treasury with extensive experience in the private and public sectors.
- Mr Jim Minto: A director of the Australian Finance Group and Dai-ichi Life Asia-Pacific with extensive insurance experience.
- Mr Paul O’Sullivan: Current Chair of Singtel Optus and board member of Healthscope Limited and the St George and Sutherland Medical Research Foundation.
- Ms Estelle Pearson: Award winning actuary and director of Finity Consulting with extensive experience in the insurance industry.
- Ms Andrea Staines: An experienced director and advisor on strategic planning and risk management and board member of Uniting Care QLD and Australian Rural Leadership Foundation.
The four continuing members of the NDIA Board, who had their terms extended by 12 months last year, are: Professor Rhonda Galbally AO; Mr Glenn Keys; Mr Martin Laverty; and Mr John Walsh AM.
The Minister acknowledged the contribution of the four outgoing Board members: Chair, Mr Bruce Bonyhady AM; Ms Geraldine Harwood; Mr John Hill PSM; and Ms Fiona Payne, whose extended terms ended on 31 December 2016.
Outgoing Chair Mr Bonyhady wished the new board success, as reported by Pro Bono Australia.
“I would like to thank the inaugural board for their highly effective governance of the NDIS, very significant achievements in a most challenging environment and unwavering commitment to serve people with disability, their families and carers.
“I wish the new board success in continuing to deliver the NDIS on time, on budget and with very high participant satisfaction,” Mr Bonyhady said.