Board Members

The Surf Life Saving Queensland Board comprises a President, Deputy President and seven directors.

Photo of Gerard O’Brien
Gerard O’Brien

Gerard joined Noosa Heads SLSC in 2001 as a Nipper parent of four young children.  In the years since, he has held a wide variety of positions at Club, Branch and State level, including 6 years as Club President and 3 years as Sunshine Coast Branch President.  He was elected State President in September 2022.  He is a Life Member of his club and remains an active patrolling member and Surf Sports competitor.

Gerard has enjoyed an extensive Executive career, with more than 30 years in CEO/General Manager roles in the Fast Moving Consumer Goods sector in Australia and overseas, including 10 years as CEO/MD of an ASX-listed Public Company.  He has a financial management background, featuring a Commerce degree (Griffith) and an MBA from Georgetown University, USA.  He retains business advisory and consulting roles in the Pacific.

Gerard has a history of extensive engagement at Board level with Industry Associations and Not-For-Profits over the course of his career.  He is a Non-Executive Director of Spinal Life Australia, Chair of Spinal Futures Limited and Non-Executive Director of Mobility Healthcare Australia.

Photo of Shane Mackenzie
Shane Mackenzie
Director of Finance

Shane has been a member of Coolum SLSC since 2017 and held the position of Treasurer of the club for 3 years.  He was elected to the Board of SLSQ in the role of Director of Finance in September 2022.

A qualified chartered accountant, Shane has a broad range of experience in finance and property, including with PwC and more recently as CFO of one of Queensland’s largest privately owned property groups.  Shane holds a Bachelor of Business and Master of Applied Finance.

Photo of Mark Wyer
Mark Wyer

Over the past 15 years, Mark has held a variety of active service roles including Patrol Captain, Radio Officer and Executive Roles of Deputy President and President. Mark has been a driving influence of club development and strategic planning during his time with Emu Park SLSC. Mark has also been a Councillor at Branch Level and was nominated by SLSA as a Masterclass Leader in 2016. Mark has competed at State and Aussies Championships in surf boat rowing with Emu Park, Mooloolaba and Metropolitan Caloundra and is a current patrolling member for Mooloolaba SLSC.

Based on the Sunshine Coast, Mark is the Urban Development Lead for Brisbane in an international consultancy (CPEng & RPEQ) and has over 20 years’ civil engineering experience in both urban and municipal planning and development. He has a continuing commitment to strategic planning, business development, leadership, and development coordination. Mark is a business and engineering graduate together with graduation from AICD and is passionate about the opportunity of combining his professional knowledge of strategic planning and infrastructure development with volunteer lifesaving.

Photo of Dr Mel Cowlishaw
Dr Mel Cowlishaw

Mel first joined Alexandra Headlands SLSC in 2000 and later joined Townsville Picnic Bay SLSC when she relocated to North Queensland to undertake her PhD. As an active member of the surf life saving movement in south-east and regional Queensland, she has held numerous roles at the club and branch level. She has also been part of advisory committees at the state and national level related to diversity and the environment.

Now based in Brisbane, Mel is a marine scientist with over 20 years’ experience. Throughout her career, she has contributed to the development, implementation and monitoring of multi-tiered government strategic plans and policy to address the greatest threats to the marine environment, with a primary focus on climate change. She enjoys collaborating across her networks to broker knowledge and orchestrate partnerships that deliver on ground actions with measurable impacts.

Mel is an active member of the environment profession, championing best practice and the involvement of women in science and technical roles. She is also an experienced not-for-profit board member.

Photo of Hope Chikuwa
Hope Chikuwa
Independent Director

Hope Chikuwa is an aviation professional with over 25 years’ experience across the diverse sectors of the industry including airline, business jet aviation, general aviation, regulatory and standards bodies. She has worked in commercial, government and not-for-profit organisations of various sizes and complexity.

Her experience includes aviation and general management, strategic leadership, aircraft maintenance and operations; safety, governance, risk and compliance; business development, project management and change management.

Complementing her aviation qualifications, Hope has a Masters in Business Administration (International) and a Bachelor of Commerce.

Hope is passionate about investing in the next generation of aviation professionals. As a member of Women in Aviation International and Australian Society of Air Safety Investigators professional bodies, she actively contributes to the development and coordination of mentor programs.

Photo of Steve Barclay
Steve Barclay

Steve joined the surf lifesaving community as a Cadet in the 70’s and competed as a ‘beachie’. Then as the years progressed he found his calling as a boatie, first As a junior and now in the master’s division. Along the way Steve became an IRB driver, an official, a finance committee person, a judicial committee person at club, branch and state level and then importantly to him, a nipper parent. Steve was recently awarded the 40 years service recognition badge and certificate for Surf Lifesaving.

Prior to joining the QLD Government public sector as an executive lawyer, Steve was in private practice as a barrister and a 20 year veteran of the Queensland Police Service. Steve holds graduate and post-graduate qualifications in Law and Arts.

In his spare time, Steve is a Defence Force Reservist in the Military Legal Service and has served throughout Australia and internationally.

Photo of Tom Sealy
Tom Sealy

Tom joined the lifesaving movement as a nipper in 1998 and has since obtained numerous lifesaving awards and completed over 1,000 voluntary patrol hours. As the youngest Life Member of Mermaid Beach AEME SLSC he has held various executive roles at his club and assisted in shaping its direction in lifesaving and youth development endeavours. Tom is a graduate of the SLSA National Leadership College and Masterclass development programs and was selected to represent SLSA at the 2017 Japanese Lifesaving Exchange Program.

Previous to his appointment to the board Tom was a member of the SLSQ Membership Services Committee where he made significant contributions to the implementation of the State Membership Sustainability Project. His involvement has spanned strategic oversight of facilities development across the state for both club and state managed ‘bricks and mortar’. Tom is a registered architect working for a local property developer in Brisbane and has over fifteen years’ experience completing architectural projects locally and interstate. Tom is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors course.

Photo of Dr Jeannette Young PSM
Dr Jeannette Young PSM
Governor of Queensland - SLSQ Patron

Her Excellency was sworn-in as the 27th Governor of Queensland on 1 November 2021 and is a Patron of Surf Life Saving Queensland.

In August 2005, the Governor was appointed to the role of Chief Health Officer for Queensland, with responsibility for leading the State’s preventative health and public health agendas, including response to public health emergencies. In January 2020, when the COVID-19 virus outbreak was declared a pandemic, the Governor became the State Health Incident Controller.

During her medical career, Dr Young had specialist qualifications as a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Medical Administrators and as a Fellow by Distinction of the Faculty of Public Health of the Royal College of Physicians of the United Kingdom. She was also appointed Fellow of numerous other eminent education and research institutions, has received honorary doctorates from two Queensland Universities, and has received an Australia Day Achievement Medallion, as well as a Public Service Medal.

Our Major Partners

Our valued partners help us deliver on our vision of zero preventable deaths in Queensland public waters.

A partnership with Surf Life Saving Queensland offers these businesses a marketing edge coupled with a strong sense of community commitment that delivers positive results.

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Championships, Series and Leagues

SLSQ encourages all members to engage in healthy competition in the world of surf life saving. Whether through SLSQ high-performance pathways, or local masters competitions – everyone can have fun competing in surf sports.

Championships, Series and Leagues

Each season Surf Life Saving Queensland’s premier sporting events continue to grow in stature.

Queensland Teams

A pivotal part of Queensland’s continued success in surf sports is our commitment to developing our elite teams.

Competition Results

Get up-to-date results from surf sport competitions all along the Queensland coast.

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