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VBA Board

The VBA Board was established on 1 July 2013 under section 200 of the Building Act 1993.

A board of commissioners is responsible for the governance and strategic management of the VBA to ensure its effectiveness as a regulator.

The key responsibilities of the Board include:

  • setting the VBA’s direction and priorities
  • establishing performance criteria and monitoring performance against those criteria
  • overseeing delivery of the VBA’s objectives and functions
  • establishing appropriate and effective financial governance and oversight arrangements, including the regular review of the effectiveness of those arrangements
  • overseeing the VBA’s systems for internal control, risk management, auditing and legal compliance
  • selecting and appointing the Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
  • establishing strategic policies for the VBA, subject to any delegation of this responsibility to the CEO.

Commissioners are appointed by the Governor-in-Council on the recommendation of the Minister for Planning. For information about the terms of appointment for VBA board members, visit Public Board Appointments Victoria.

The Board meets at least six times each year. The CEO, Sue Eddy, attends all meetings of the Board.

The Board is made up of the following Commissioners:

Michelle McLean is an experienced Board Director and an expert in finance, governance and people management.

She is Deputy Chair of the Country Fire Authority and Chair of its Finance, Audit and Risk Committee, and currently serves as a non-executive Director on the boards of East Gippsland Water and FrontierSI.

From 1995 to 2018, Ms McLean was an executive and managing partner of Cornwall Stodart Lawyers, where she held several roles, including Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer. Ms McLean is a life member of the Australian Legal Practice Management Association, where she served as national president from 2002 to 2005.

She also served on the executive council of the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and as a Board member of the Mercy Health Foundation.

Justin Madden's career includes 15 years in the Victorian State Parliament, having held seven Ministerial portfolios within successive Victorian Labor Governments across 11 years including as Minister for Planning from 2006 to 2010.  He retired from Parliament in 2014.

He is also a registered Architect who operated his own practice prior to entering Parliament.

Carmel Coate is a longstanding and highly respected plumbing and fire protection industry leader, who was appointed a Commissioner of the VBA Board in November 2017.

Carmel has extensive experience in the plumbing sector, having been National Executive Director of the National Fire Industry Association for 30 years and a member of the Plumbing Advisory Council for the past 16 years.

With strong experience in project leadership and team management, business planning and systems implementation, her extensive CV sets out a range of positions on boards, committees and advisory groups in the plumbing, fire protection and industry training sectors. Carmel is the 2018 incoming Chair of the Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre. She is also Chair of Fire Industry Training Ltd, an industry-owned training organisation, and is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Yvonne von Hartel is a Founding Principal of the award-winning national architectural and urban design practice peckvonhartel. She is a member of the La Trobe University Council and Deputy Chair of the Infrastructure and Estates Planning Committee; a Trustee of the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre and Chair of the Capital Works Committee; a Member of University of Woollongong SMART Infrastructure Advisory Council; a Board Member of the Queen Victoria Market Pty Ltd and a Member of the Audit and Risk Committee and a Board Member of the Land Development Agency of the ACT Government. She is also the Chair of the Building Regulations Advisory Committee.

Yvonne is also a member of a number of Design Advisory Panels, including the Sydney International Convention, Exhibition and Entertainment Precinct; Sydney Metro; The Mornington Peninsula Shire Council; Capital Metro Agency; WestConnex and The Land Development Agency of the ACT Government.

In 2007, Yvonne was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia for services to architecture, design and building, to the promotion of women in business and to the community.

Kelly Humphreys is a non-executive director and accomplished financial services and risk management professional with executive experience across the public and private sectors in Australia and New Zealand. She has held the roles of Chairman and Company Secretary and is a current director of the Accident Compensation Conciliation Service and Latrobe Health Services.

Kelly has held senior executive roles, including with Aon, Allianz and Liberty Financial. As General Manager – Government with the Victorian Managed Insurance Authority she led the delivery of risk services and advice to the Victorian public sector.

Kelly holds a Master of Management and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Dr Julia Cornwell McKean brings more than twenty years of experience in policy, complaint-handling, investigations, regulation and government.

Julia started her regulatory career at the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman in the late 1990s.  For many years Julia was responsible for enforcing spam and telemarketing laws at the Australian Communications and Media Authority.  In this capacity Julia chaired a number of international committees, including at the United Nations’ Internet Governance Forum.  In 2015 Julia joined the Office of the eSafety Commissioner to set up and run its cyberbullying complaints scheme for children, which involved close collaboration with global social media providers.

Since mid-2017 Julia has been working as a consultant providing professional advisory services to government and NGOs with a focus on probity, policy review and audit.  More recently, Julia has been providing coaching and mentoring services and delivering training workshops to government and corporate clients.

Julia is also a member of the Merit Protection Boards, an independent statutory body established to hear grievances, appeals and reviews from employees of the Department of Education and Training.

Sam has 40 years’ experience in the Melbourne metropolitan water industry having held numerous senior management positions associated with asset management, growth planning (incorporating Integrated Water Management), asset operations, land and sub divisional development and corporate governance.

He has served on a number of not-for-profit boards supporting regional growth.

He holds Civil Engineering qualifications, a Post Grad in Management and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Dr Gillian Sparkes AM is an expert in environmental management, governance, public sector management and stakeholder engagement. Among other roles, Dr Sparkes is the Commissioner for Environmental Sustainability in Victoria.

Thu-Trang Tran is the CEO of Volunteer West and has cross-sector experience in government, universities and NGOs, including the Department of Justice and the Oxfam-Monash Partnership.

Murray Coleman OAM is the Head of Development Projects ANZ at Macquarie Capital. Mr Coleman has more than 30 years of expertise gained in the infrastructure, property and construction industries.

Simon Weir is a barrister with more than thirty years’ experience in personal injury and insurance litigation. He has worked as a Partner of Slater and Gordon and was a Senior Legal Counsel for the Victorian Workcover Authority.

Cladding Committee

The Cladding Committee supports the work of the VBA Board in monitoring performance of the State-wide Cladding Audit (SCA) program, its compliance with regulatory requirements and policies, enforcement action for practitioners associated with, but not limited to the SCA and effective risk management, ensure lessons are learnt, and that these are shared to help prevent future systemic building system failures.

People and Culture Committee

The People and Culture Committee is responsible for oversight of and advice and recommendations to the VBA Board on organisational culture and values, and policies and initiatives for the development of people capability, inclusion and diversity, equity and well-being of staff, to ensure they are consistent with and support the VBA’s people and capability strategy.

Regulatory Operations Committee

The Regulatory Operations Committee provides assurance to the VBA Board that the VBA is fulfilling its core regulatory functions as required under s197 of the Building Act 1993 (Vic); considers and makes recommendations to the VBA Board on the VBA’s service delivery and operational models in line with the VBA’s risk appetite, and VBA and government policy; and considers and makes recommendations to the VBA Board on the implications and impact of legislative, policy and regulatory reform on the VBA’s approach as a regulator.

Remuneration Committee

The Remuneration Committee supports the VBA Board to meet its responsibilities under section 203 of the Building Act 1993 (Vic) to employ or remove a Chief Executive Officer (CEO), and determine the terms and conditions under which the CEO will be employed; undertakes performance planning and performance review with the CEO; undertakes contract negotiations with the CEO as required, and review as necessary the remuneration of and employment of the CEO; and maintains oversight of executive employment, remuneration and performance arrangements at the VBA.

Research and Innovation Committee

The Research and Innovation Committee is responsible for oversight of, and advice and recommendations to the VBA Board on research matters to ensure the VBA Board is performing its responsibilities under section 197(i) of the Building Act 1993 (Vic) relevant to the VBA’s research function to: conduct and promote research relating to the regulation of the building and plumbing industries in Victoria; and report on the outcomes of research in its report of operations under the Financial Management Act 1994 (Vic).

Risk, Audit and Finance Committee

The Risk, Audit and Finance Committee is responsible for independent oversight in its review and assessment of the effectiveness of the VBA’s systems and controls for financial management (including asset management), risk management, performance and sustainability.

Meeting attendance during 2020–21

Name Meetings attended Maximum possible
Michelle McLean
(Chair from 1 October 2020)
7 7
Justin Madden AM
(Chair from 1 February 2020 to 30 September 2020)
8 8
Carmel Coate 8 8
Dr Julia Cornwell McKean 6 8
Kelly Humphreys78
Ross Kennedy 8 8
Natalie MacDonald
(Resigned 19 February 2021)
Anna Skreiner78
Sam Torre 8 8
Yvonne von Hartel AM 78
Name Meetings attended Maximum possible
Justin Madden AM
3 3
Dr Julia Cornwell McKean 3 3
Sam Torre 3 3
Name Meetings attended Maximum possible
Carmel Coate
4 4
Kelly Humphreys 4 4
Natalie MacDonald
(resigned 19 February 2021)
1 2
Sam Torre 4 4
Yvonne von Hartel AM 1 4
Name Meetings attended Maximum possible
Kelly Humphreys 7 7
Dr Julia Cornwell McKean 7 7
Ross Kennedy 7 7
Anna Skreiner 7 7