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Corporate Ladder: your weekly guide to executive appointments


In this week’s executive appointments column, InDaily tracks the movements of those driving South Australia’s public and private sectors in industries including mining and the arts. Who’s who on the Corporate Ladder? Read on.

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Top Lutheran job

Ross Smith has been named the Adelaide-based Lutheran Laypeople’s League Chief Executive Officer, replacing Allen Kupke, who is set to retire in October.

Kupke joined the religious bank in 1988 as administration manager and held various roles until becoming CEO in 2008.

Smith is the NSW Anglican Schools Corporation CEO and Glebe Administration Board chair. He was previously Chair of the Sydney Diocesan Secretariat.

He comes from a strong finance and management background, with his career shaped by extensive experience in corporate restructuring and work in mergers and acquisitions in Australia, Silicon Valley and London at companies including KPMG, PwC and McGrath Nicol.

“I’m very conscious that the LLL is the custodian of funds that have been provided by people who are seeking to have their money work in accordance with Lutheran beliefs,” Smith said.

“We’re not just an ADI, and I want to see that deployment of funds with a Lutheran missional approach continue.”

A return to the firm

John Doyle

Projects, energy and infrastructure lawyer John Doyle has rejoined Adelaide-based law firm Piper Alderman as a Partner, working alongside Martin Lovell and Kathryn Walker.

Doyle started his career with the firm as an Associate in 2001. He was with Piper Alderman until joining Minter Ellison as a Senior Associate three years later.

He has since advised and negotiated on projects in Australia and the UK in industries across electricity, mining, construction and infrastructure.

Managing Partner Tony Britten-Jones said Doyle’s appointment highlighted the firm’s “ongoing commitment to the energy, resources and construction sectors in Australia”.

Doyle is also SA Association of Corporate Counsel Vice President.

Arts and media movements

Kate Costello

South Australian business leader Kate Costello has been appointed as the new Chair of Adelaide Fringe.

Costello is a professional non-executive director with more than 30 years’ experience across a number of local and national companies including Whittles Management Services and LBT Innovations.

She has replaced David Minear who was in the role for six years.

In another part of the film sector, South Australian Film Corporation has made four new appointments.

Red Dog and Hotel Mumbai film producer Julie Ryan has been appointed Executive Producer while director, producer and screen industry executive Kath McIntyre has been made Executive of Development and Industry Development.

SAFC associate executive producer Nara Wilson has been appointed Executive of First Nations Industry Development and SAFC PR, marketing manager and communications executive Petra Starke has been appointed Head of Communications and Marketing.

Stuart Pool
Kellie Melville

Closer to home, Stuart Pool has joined Solstice Media as its new Head of Digital and Partnerships. Pool moves to InDaily's publisher after a role as GM Agency Sales at News Corp SA.

He has been tasked with revenue and audience growth and will lead the commercial team, taking over from Kellie Melville who has moved to Piper Alderman as their Marketing and Business Development Manager.

Pool said that although the market has experienced a significant decline in recent months, he was impressed by the suite of Solstice products that spanned digital to print, as well as the trusted mastheads.

“The latest Standard Media Index (SMI) data says the last quarter was possibly one of the worst ever, but there are encouraging signs to a return to growth as well,” Pool said.

Pool said what excited him most was the phenomenal increase in InDaily’s readership numbers, growth he put down to the public’s need for trusted, credible journalism.

“I am excited to join Solstice at a time of unprecedented audience growth and an expansion into new markets like Queensland with many new products,” Pool said.  

InDaily’s recent rise to the top 25 in June’s Nielsen Digital Content ratings is proof of this growth.”


New mining director

Mark McGeough

Thor Mining PLC – which has resource projects in South Australia, the Northern Territory and Nevada – has appointed Mark McGeough as a non-executive director.

The South Australian-based geologist has spent more than 25 years in commodities exploration and most recently worked in geological consultancy services for exploration and mining companies.

Across his career, McGeough has led teams for companies including Toro Energy and Chinova Resources and sat on number of committees, including as SA Chamber of Mines councillor and chair of the Adelaide branch of the Australasian Institute of Mines and Metallurgy.

International engineering consultancy firm WSP has appointed Ana Bos as its South Australian Regional Transport Executive. She will also continue to manage the company’s Roads, Aviation and Civil team.

Bos has worked for WSP for more than 15 years, having previously held a position as a civil drafter with a Queensland consulting firm.

A spokesperson from the WSP said Bos’s appointment was part of a company restructure.

Compostable company expansion

Craig Secombe

Craig Secombe has been named National Sales Manager for Adelaide-based compostable bag and film manufacturer BioBag World Australia.

He has almost two decades of experience a market leader in FMCG, has managed packaging distributors nationally as well as leading sales and marketing of mobile waste containers at Mastec Australia.

A statement from the company said in the newly created role, Secombe would assist with the customisation of compostable solutions to replace traditional plastic polyethylene products such as bin liners, magazine mailing film and coffee knock tube liners. 

Inaugural REISA board

In March, the Real Estate Institute of South Australia became an established company. A statement from REISA said a board had subsequently been appointed to advocate for members on policy and legislative change, among other things.

The board includes strategic executive leader Cain Cooke, property professional Fairly Delbridge, Sarah Group COO and CFO Matthew Woodrow, external affairs and government relation specialist Robert Underdown, boutique real estate agency Refined director Victor Velgush, real estate leader Adam Blight and Timms Real Estate director and co-founder Valerie Timms.

Government appointments

Former public prosecutions director Adam Kimber has been appointed to the district court, replacing Barry Beazley, who retired in April.

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