Ms Sheriden Morris, Chair

BAppSc (Hons), GAICD

head shot of Sheriden Morris

Sheriden is currently the Managing Director and Company Secretary of the Cairns-based non-profit Reef and Rainforest Research Centre (RRRC) and Deputy Chair of Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef.

Sheriden has extensive experience in environmental research and monitoring management, aquaculture development, agricultural science and agronomy in the sugar cane and banana industries of Far North Queensland and served as a Director of Wetland Care Australia and has previously worked with CSIRO and GBRMPA.

As an extensive contributor to land and sea management policy, Sheriden has also spearheaded the development and implementation of an innovative aid development program on Australia’s northern borderlands with Papua New Guinea.

Board term: 2017-2022

Mr Don McDonald AM OBE, Deputy Chair

Don McDonald

Don is the Chair of MHD Pty Ltd—a family owned beef cattle operation in Cloncurry in north-west Queensland. Don has previously held Board positions with the Australian Agricultural Company Ltd, Queensland Industry Development Corporation, Kidson Gold Mines Ltd, CSIRO, ATEC Rail Group and the Queensland Royal Flying Doctors.

Don is recognised nationally for his commitment to regional issues. In 1988 he was awarded an OBE for his services to the community, in 2001 Don was awarded a Centenary Medal, and then in 2006 he was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia Award.

Board term: 2019-2022

Cr John Wharton AM

John Wharton

Councillor John Wharton AM is Mayor of the Richmond Shire Council. He received a Member of the Order of Australia Award and Centenary Medal for his service to the community of North-West Queensland and local government. He is the Director of his own company, Wharton & Co Pty Ltd and is a registered Real Estate Agent.

John is recognised nationally for his commitment to community service through  local government, regional development, natural resource management and primary industry organisations. In 2007 he was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia Award for his service to the community of north-west Queensland. He also received the Centenary Medal for distinguished service to local government.

Board term: 2017- 2021

Cr Peter Long

BE (Hons), BA, BSc(EnvSc) CPEng

Peter Long

Peter is Mayor of the City of Karratha. A professional engineer and environmental scientist, Peter has instigated and managed a range of businesses in the environmental and engineering fields and has served on several Boards including the:

  • West Pilbara Institute
  • St Luke’s Collage (Chair)
  • Biosequest Australia, and
  • Worley Astron (Chair).
Board term: 2020-2023

Mr John Bearne

AdvDipEng, FAICD, Registered Builder QLD

John Bearne

John has substantial experience as Chair and Director of numerous commercial and not-for-profit organisations including Townsville Hospital Health Service (Chair), Tropical Health Academic Research Centre (Chair), the Jezzine Barracks Community Trust (Director), the Australian Technical College of North Queensland (Director) and Yumba Meta (Director).

He was formerly the President of the Townsville Chamber of Commerce and is a Life Member of Townsville Enterprise Ltd.

In 2019, John started as the Project Manager for the Hells Gate Dame business case.

Board term: 2019 -2022

Ronald (Ricky) Archer

Ricky Archer portrait

Ricky Archer is a Djungan man from the Western Tablelands region of North Queensland. 

Ricky has a strong network of on-ground land and sea managers across Northern Australia from which to draw from and has demonstrated an ability to connect on-ground work of Indigenous organisations with regional, state and commonwealth priorities. 

He has been actively involved and engaged on the Indigenous Advisory Committee since 2014. The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) is an expert group who provide advice to the Minister for the Environment on the operation of the EPBC Act, taking into account the significance of Indigenous peoples' knowledge of the management of land and the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.

He was also a member of the National Landcare Advisory Committee which provided further connections to the work of the Indigenous Advisory Committee. 

Mr Archer has a background in geographical information systems, Indigenous knowledge management, and natural and cultural resource management.

Board term: 2020-2022

Mr Brendon Douglas


Headshot Brendon Douglas

Brendon is experienced in executive leadership in the higher education, commercial, community and public service sectors.

He works as the Deputy Director at Menzies School of Health Research, Vice-Chancellors' Fellow at the Innovative Research Universities representing seven universities, and International Fellow at Oxford Academic Health Partners.

Brendon is a qualified lawyer, Fellow of the Institute of Managers and Leaders, and has postgraduate qualifications in management. Brendon is a Board member of the Lowitja Institute and is actively involved and engaged in policy discussions relevant to the ‘north’, including the Developing Northern Australia agenda and the Northern Territory’s Operation Rebound. 

Brendon and his family call Darwin home. 

Board term: 2020-2023

Dr Rebecca Mohr-Bell

B. Nat. Res. Econ, PhD (Economics)

Headshot Rebecca Mohr Bell

Rebecca Mohr-Bell is a pastoralist and agricultural economist from Katherine, NT. Rebecca has extensive experience in supporting agricultural producers to improve their business performance and supporting agricultural organisations with strategic planning and research. With her husband she runs a commercial Brangus herd at Katherine which is focused on breeding a high growth, high fertility animal.

Rebecca is a member of a number of NT government advisory committees and a member of the NT Isolated Children’s Parents’ Association State Council. She has recently been appointed to the Board of Rural Business Support, a non-profit organisation which provides independent business advice to agricultural and small businesses in the NT and South Australia.

Board term: 2020-2023