New appointments for Gold Coast Waterways Authority

Published Friday, 10 December, 2021 at 02:00 PM

Minister for Transport and Main Roads
The Honourable Mark Bailey

The Gold Coast Waterways Authority (GCWA) incoming Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Chair of the Board have today been announced.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said Mr Chris Derksema would take over the CEO role in 2022.

“After a highly competitive recruitment process, Chris has been appointed as CEO and brings with him more than 25 years of experience in Australia and internationally,” Mr Bailey said.

“This experience will be of great help in leading Gold Coast Waterways into an age of new technologies and innovation.

“I look forward to working with Chris and wish him all the best in the new role.”

In accepting the role, Mr Chris Derksema, who grew up in the South East, said he was a passionate waterways user himself.

“I look forward to working with the Board, staff, and our agency partners in being able to make positive changes for the waterways and our users, creating a resilient and vibrant waterway whilst ensuring we get the fundamentals in waterways management right,” Mr Derksema said.

“To successfully manage the future of the Gold Coast waterways, it is important that the GCWA continues a conversation with the community and our stakeholders. 

“The Gold Coast waterways are a nationally important natural asset that must be carefully managed to ensure we are creating real social, economic and environmental value for all.”,

Mr Bailey said the position of Chair of the Board would be taken up by Mr Greg Vann.

“Greg has been an Appointed Member of the Waterways Board since last year and will now be stepping up as the new Chairman,” he said.

“With a career spanning over local and state governments, as well as the private sector, Greg’s experience will help to steer the Waterway into the future.

“In particular, I look forward to working with Greg and Chris in implementing the Gold Coast Waterways Management Strategy 2021-2030.”

Mr Greg Vann said it was an honour to be appointed to the position.

“The Gold Coast Waterways Authority is such a community-focused government organisation, and I look forward to working to continue the sustainable management of the regions waterways,” Mr Vann said.

“I see my role as the Chair of the GCWA Board as a great way to help advance the authority’s role as a key component of the future liveability, productivity and resilience of the city and beyond.”

Mr Bailey said Ms Keitha Dunstan would also be appointed to the board in 2022.

“Ms Dunstan is currently the Provost of Bond University on the Gold Coast and a proud Mandandanji descendant,” he said.

“Her appointment sees the Board now equally representing male and female members - made up of three women and three men.”

Mr Bailey took time to thank outgoing CEO, Mr Hal Morris, and Chair, Ms Mara Bún, for their contributions to the organisation.

“I wish Hal all the best in his retirement and thank him for his eight years of service,” he said.

“Likewise, I thank Mara for her leadership and contributions towards many major milestones during her six years in the role.

“While there will be significant change in 2022, I look forward to seeing what Chris and Greg will bring to the Waterways team.”


Media contact: Courtney Thompson - 0433 585 570