Council

Currently, twenty-one Councillors constitute the RNA Council and guide every aspect of the RNA's operation and development. An executive team of seven Councillors, including the RNA President, has the responsibility of ensuring the ongoing viability of the Association and the Brisbane Showgrounds.

The RNA Council represents almost 5,000 RNA Members throughout Queensland and Australia and meet on a monthly basis.

All Councillors act in an honorary capacity and are assisted by Council Stewards, who similarly receive no remuneration for their work. The members of the RNA Council provide a range of expertise to the Association, with diverse backgrounds in the rural, private and public sectors.

Members of the RNA Council also sit on various committees which meet on a regular basis to assist with the direction and administration of Royal Queensland Show competitions and Ekka exhibits.

 
David Thomas
 
 

David Thomas

President
BCom LLB Hons Qld

David Thomas became the RNA President in 2011 after serving on the Council for nine years, the last two as Senior Vice-President. He participates in all activities of the association and is Chair of the Executive Committee and of the Council Nominations Committee. Following Council convention, as President he is not a member of any council or show committee. David has more than 30 years experience as a lawyer. Previously Senior Partner at Minter Ellison Lawyers in Brisbane, he served as a Justice of the Supreme Court of Queensland for four years before becoming a Justice of the Federal Court of Australia and the President of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) in July 2017. From 2012 to October 2014 he served as the Deputy President of the Royal Agricultural Society of the Commonwealth (RASC) and remains a Trustee of the RASC. Since its formation in 2016, he has been a director of Agricultural Shows Australia. He is Deputy Chair of Queensland Ballet and a Director of The Society of The Sacred Advent Schools Pty Ltd, which is the trustee of St Margaret's and St Aidan's Anglican Girls Schools. He is also a board member of the Association Internationale des Haute Jurisdictions Administratives. He recently retired as Chair of the Queensland Maritime Museum.

 
Daniel (Dan) L O’Connor OAM
 
 

Daniel (Dan) L O’Connor OAM

Senior Vice-President
DipTchng (BCAE) BEdSt (Qld) LLB (QUT) LLM (Qld) FIML MAICD

Dan O'Connor is Vice President of the Industrial Court of Queensland. He has been an RNA Councillor since 2000, serving as Honorary Treasurer and Junior Vice-President before being elected Senior Vice-President in September 2011. He is actively involved in the RNA and oversees many aspects of show planning including Chair of the Entertainment, Horse Breeds Expo and Appeals and Disciplinary Committees and a member of the House and In-Show Catering, Nominations, Horse and Arena, and Sheep Dog Trials Committees. He is a former Trustee of The Royal Agricultural Society of the Commonwealth and is involved in a number of not-for-profit organisations, in particular a Trustee of the Edinburgh Declaration Trust, a member of the Governing Council of the Judicial Conference of Australia and Chairman of the Council of the Anglican Church Grammar School.

 
Angus G Adnam
 
 

Angus G Adnam

Junior Vice-President

Managing Director of AAA Livestock Services Pty Ltd, Angus Adnam has brought a wealth of experience and energy to the RNA Council since his appointment in November 2005. An RNA Steward and Honorary Council Steward since 1978, he was elected Junior Vice-President in September 2011. He is Chair of the committees that oversee the Royal Queensland Food and Wine Show competitions and a board member of LiveCorp.

 
Jane Onley
 
 

Jane Onley

Honorary Treasurer
BComm CA FGIA FCIS

Jane joined the RNA Council in November 2018 with extensive experience in the agriculture and government sectors. As a Chartered Accountant from a 'Big 4' audit background and a Fellow of the Governance Institute of Australia, Jane has spent the previous 30 years working in the commercial and not-for-profit sectors. She has held various roles in finance including Chief Financial Officer, and currently serves as Head of Governance and Risk for a Defence-related Commonwealth entity. Jane and her husband Nigel operate a cattle breeding and fattening property at Taroom and are active members of the Taroom Show Society.

 
Catherine Sinclair
 
 

Catherine Sinclair

BSc MA Illinois DUniv FAICD FAIM

Catherine Sinclair joined the RNA Council in 2007, bringing extensive professional experience in the corporate sector. She has specific experience as a Board Director in transport, defence and the arts and has been a tribunal member in the primary industry sector. Having a rural background, she is committed to ensuring a vibrant future for the RNA. She is a member of the Executive, Ekka Show Legend, Audit and Finance, Space and Letting, Industry and Sponsorship, and Education, Innovation and Technology Committees and Chair of the Bush Poetry Committee. Her current position is Director of The Consultancy Bureau Pty Ltd. Ms Sinclair was awarded an Honorary Degree of Doctor of the University by Griffith University in 2014 and a Centenary Medal in 2001.

 
Professor Peter Little AM
 
 

Professor Peter Little AM

LLB LLM Qld PhD Bond FCPA

Peter Little was elected to the RNA Council in March 2009 and is a member of the Executive, Audit and Finance, Development, Future Directions and Industry and Sponsorship Committees. He is also Chair of the Education and the HR and Remuneration Committees. He is an Emeritus Professor at the Queensland University of Technology, formerly a Deputy Vice-Chancellor, and holds a Bachelor of Laws and Master of Laws from the University of Queensland and PhD from Bond University Law School. He is a Fellow of CPA Australia, and Fellow of Queensland Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is a Director of Ormiston College, a Director of the RACQ Foundation Pty Ltd and is a member of the Governing Committee of the Queensland Business Leaders Hall of Fame.

 
Don Chandler
 
 

Don Chandler

B. Bus, Member AICD

Don Chandler joined the RNA Council in June 2015. He is currently a Partner of national firm, Crestone Wealth Management. Crestone evolved following the successful buyout of UBS Wealth Management in Australia in June 2016. He and his family have had a long association with the RNA. Mr Chandler is Chair of the Education on Show, Pisciculture, and Poultry, Pigeons, Birds and Eggs Committees, as well as Chair of the RNA Foundation, the RNA's charity arm. He is a former President of The Brookfield Show Society, Chairman of the Brookfield Recreation Reserve Trust and a Non-Executive Chairman of a private Queensland family's investment interests.

 
Liz Allen
 
 

Liz Allen

BA, Dip Ag Admin

A Steward and Honorary Council Steward in the Stud Beef section since 2002, Liz Allen was elected to Council in 2014. She is Chair of the Quilts Committee and a member of the Beef Cattle and Meat Hall and Joint Stock Committees. Ms Allen, in partnership with family, operates a large-scale stud and commercial Santa Gertrudis beef operation at Blackall. She brings extensive knowledge of the beef industry and event management to Council through her previous roles with the RNA, Meat & Livestock Australia, AgForce Queensland and Qld Primary Industries Week Inc.

 
Lionel J Blumel
 
 

Lionel J Blumel

Lionel Blumel has been involved with the RNA as a Steward since 1986 and was elected to the RNA Council in November 2006. He is Chair of the Canine and Cats Committees and is a member of the Charities, Ekka Show Legend, Entries, Space and Letting, Veterinary and Animal Welfare, and Joint Stock Committees. Mr Blumel is a committee member of the Samford Show Society, patron of the Dalmatian Club of Qld, an active member/supporter of a number of dog clubs and active member of his local community groups, working with people. He is a now retired building construction project manager and prior to retirement he managed natural disaster recovery projects across Queensland.

 
Rod Bower
 
 

Rod Bower

B. App. Sci. (Food Tech) MAIFST

Rod Bower joined the RNA Council in October 2015 and is a member of the Entertainment, Future Directions, Horse and Arena, and Joint Stock Committees. He is a long standing member of the RNA having previously worked as Ring Steward and Honorary Council Steward in the Horse and Arena section for more than 30 years. He served as Chairman of the inaugural Future Directions Committee and exhibited and stewarded horse and cattle sections at Queensland and interstate shows. Mr Bower, a qualified Food Technologist, is Managing Director for a family owned food manufacturing business producing products for national and export markets.

 
John Cotter
 
 

John Cotter

BRTP GAICD FIML

John Cotter was appointed to the RNA Council in July 2016. He has a long association with the RNA having been a junior exhibitor, Beef and Woodchop Steward and Honorary Council Steward, and Chair of the Future Directions Committee. He serves on the boards of Queensland Urban Utilities, Translational Research Committee and Phosphate International and the Powerhouse Theatre, and is Chair of the RNA's Industry and Sponsorship and Woodchop Committees and a member of the Appeals and Disciplinary Committee.

 
David Fagan
 
 

David Fagan

BA, GAICD

David Fagan is a consultant on media, digital and reputational strategies. He is experienced in the digital and media worlds and was editor of The Courier-Mail then editor-in-chief of News Queensland for 11 years from 2002.  He has since worked in senior levels of higher education and is the author of two recent books, Wake Up - The Nine H#shtags of Digital Disruption and Has the Luck Run Out? He is Chair of the Education Committee and sits on the board of Carers Queensland and QMusic. He is married and the father of three daughters.

 
Ian Ferguson
 
 

Ian Ferguson

BA Qld JP (Qual)

Ian Ferguson is a long standing member of the RNA, joining the Council in 2007 after previously serving as an Honorary Ring Steward and Honorary Council Steward. He is currently Chair of the Horse and Arena, Entries, and Space and Letting Committees. He also serves on seven other RNA committees. In 2015 he was appointed Ekka Ringmaster. Ian retired as an Inspector of Police at the Ethical Standards Command and now undertakes a range of community activities. He has a broad background of community involvement and currently also volunteers at Carindale PCYC.

 
Ian Galloway
 
 

Ian Galloway

Ian Galloway joined the RNA Council in October 2014. Mr Galloway, a respected stud cattle breeder from Roma, has served as President of the Australian Hereford Society, Chairman of the Brangus World Congress and judged cattle in Royal Shows across Australia, plus at international competitions. He's currently a member of the RNA's Beef and Dairy Cattle Committees. Mr Galloway operates the Cootharaba Hereford and Duarran Brangus studs. The Cootharaba Hereford stud is Australia's oldest - founded in 1926 by Ian's grandfather JJ Galloway. The Galloway family have been successful exhibitors at the Ekka for the past 90 years.

 
Michael N Grieve
 
 

Michael N Grieve

BEd NT DipEd BCAE

Michael Grieve was elected to the RNA Council in 2006. He is assistant Ringmaster and a member of the Horse and Arena Committee, as well as a member of the Finance and Audit Committee and Chair of the Charity Committee. Outside of the RNA, he is Ringmaster and a member of the Ipswich Show Society and executive member of the Queensland Thoroughbred Breeders Association.

 
Susan J Hennessey
 
 

Susan J Hennessey

Susan Hennessey brings to the RNA Council considerable expertise in the area of fine arts and management. As an RNA exhibitor and Steward for many years, she was elected to the RNA Council in 2001. She was the first female RNA Councillor elected to the Executive committee, serving on this committee from 2006 to 2010, and currently Chairs the Fine Arts and Ekka Show Legend Committees. She is also a member of the House and In-Show Catering, Space and Letting, Entertainment, Young Judges and HR and Remuneration Committees.

 
Gary Kieseker
 
 

Gary Kieseker

Dip.T B.Ed

Gary Kieseker was appointed to the RNA Council in November 2012, after working alongside the association in a consultancy position for the Royal International Convention Centre. Mr Kieseker has had a distinguished career in international hotel management, convention management and tourism education and training. He has held senior executive management positions with prominent international hotel groups, including Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group and Oberoi Hotels International. His expertise and career has spanned the globe and for the past 15 years Mr Kieseker has held a role of managing partner, consulting to the global convention and hospitality industry. He is currently Chair of the RNA's Agricultural Hall.

 
Duncan McInnes
 
 

Duncan McInnes

Duncan McInnes was elected to the RNA Council in November 2011. He brings extensive knowledge of the dairy industry and is currently Chair of the Dairy Cattle and Dairy Goats Committees. Mr McInnes, in partnership with family, operates a large dairy property 'Inverclyde' at Harrisville, as well as an agriculture and lucerne farm. He has recently retired as Chairman of Dairy Farmers Milk CoOp which represents 400 members across Australia and spent 12 years as Director of Australian Co-operative Foods. He is also a Councillor for the Scenic Rim Regional Council and heavily involved with local community organisations.

 
Robin McLay
 
 

Robin McLay

Robin McLay joined the RNA Council in October 2015 and is Chair of the Flower and Garden Committee. She brings business and horticulture industry knowledge to the Council, through her past experience in various industries including agriculture, tourism, floristry, hospitality and horticulture. She is a director of a successful national award-winning Garden Centre and a Production Nursery. Robin is a co-opted board member of Garden Centres of Australia and has been appointed to the Transition Team responsible for advancing the reinvention of Nursery and Garden Industry of Australia to a new national hybrid organisation.

 

 
Gary Noller
 
 

Gary Noller

A respected beef seed stock producer from the Darling Downs, Gary Noller was elected to the RNA Council in March 2010. Before becoming an RNA Councillor, he was an active supporter of the association having judged and exhibited at a number of Royal Queensland Shows. Mr Noller is Chair of the RNA's Beef Cattle and Meat Hall, Joint Stock, LAP Stakeholders and Young Judges Committees and is a member of the Education and Entries Committees.

 
William Roberts
 
 

William Roberts

William is a stud merino sheep and cattle producer who joined the RNA Council in November 2011, following years of involvement at the Charleville Show and State Sheep Shows across Queensland. He operates his property, Victoria Downs in Morven. Mr Roberts is President of the World Federation of Merino Breeders, serving Councillor and past President of the Queensland Merino Stud Sheepbreeders' Association Incorporated and past President of the Australian Association of Stud Merino Breeders. He has been involved in showing and judging merino sheep around Australia. Mr Roberts is currently Chair of the RNA's Fleece Breeds and Boer Goats Committee.