Our People

Bendigo Heritage Attractions has 70 employees and 60 volunteers working across all sites and offices.

While we are very proud of the heritage sites that we preserve,they would not be here today without the people who fought to keep them and those who have worked to maintain and present them to the public over the past 40 years.

We have a volunteer Board of Directors who generously give of their time to help steer the organisation into the future.

Board of Directors:

Rod Hanson, Chairman

Rod Hanson, Chairman

Rod has more than 45 years’ experience as a mining engineer and senior mining manager largely in Australia, but also in Solomon Islands and China. His experience includes underground and open pit evaluation, development and production in both site based and corporate roles.

The majority of Rod's career was in gold mining, but also spanned base metals and coal. Rod moved to Bendigo in 2005 on appointment as Chief Operating Officer and subsequently Managing Director and CEO of Bendigo/Unity Mining.

Rod has retired from full-time work but still undertakes consulting roles. Rod was chair of the Independent Review of the City of Greater Bendigo in 2013, is a board member of the Eaglehawk Recycle Shop and was previously a member of the advisory committee for the Bendigo Inventor Awards.

Rod has held non-executive director roles with several ASX and AIM companies. He is a Fellow of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy and a Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Rod has been a member of the board since 2019.


Michael McGowan, Deputy Chair

Michael McGowan, Deputy Chair

Michael has had a long association with The Bendigo Trust principally through his involvement with the Bendigo Tramways. From it's inception in 1972 he has fulfilled many voluntary roles and devoted considerable time, energy and expertise into the development of the tramway to what has become today.

Michael worked as a tram Conductor and Driver with the Melbourne and Metropolitan Tramways Board between 1976 and 1978. In 1979 he became a teacher with the Department of Education, located to Swan Hill, retiring in 2006 after 28 years as a Teacher and Leading Teacher in both classroom and administrative roles. His other community interests have included pipe bands and administrative roles with local football.

Michael has been a member of the board since 2007.


Clive Walker, Finance and Risk Committee Chairman

Clive Walker, Finance and Risk Committee Chairman

Qualifications: Fellow, CPA Australia (FCPA), Diploma of Business Studies (Accounting).

Clive has over 40 years of experience in corporate accounting and finance, including 30 years’ service in Senior finance roles at Bendigo Bank, retiring in 2013.

Clive is a member of community-based committees and has provided many years of service to CPA Australia as a councillor and as Chair.

Clive gives back to the community by serving on two local boards.

Clive has been a member of the board since 2003.


Craig Niemann, Council Nominee

Craig Niemann, Council Nominee

Craig joined the City of Greater Bendigo in October 2005. He has more than 25 years experience working in the local government sector including roles at the Borough of Eaglehawk and the Shire of East Loddon. Prior to joining the City, Craig was Shire of Loddon CEO - from 1997 to 2005.

Craig's history also includes serving on the board of North Central Regional Goldfields Library for 10 years and board member of the Inglewood and District Health Service for more than 10 years.

Craig is a Board Member of Regional Development Australia – Loddon Mallee Region.

Craig has been a member of the board since 2011.


Susie Hawke, Council Nominee

Susie Hawke, Council Nominee

Cr Susie Hawke joined the Greater Bendigo City Council in October 2019, following a count back in the Eppalock Ward.

She is passionate about promoting the importance of the early years and support for children and families, the development of sport and recreation facilities, and ensuring Greater Bendigo is an accessible and inclusive community.

Susie is a speech pathologist and has worked across a range of areas including health, education, disability and government. She is married and mother to three adult children, and has lived in Bendigo for 19 years.

Susie has been a member of the board since 2019.

Mark Andrew

Mark Andrew

Mark has 15 years’ experience in the mining industry, in operations in Australia and overseas. His experience includes mining engineering, operational and project management roles.

Mark is currently acting as Mine Projects Superintendent for the Fosterville Gold Mine.

Mark is a member of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, and in 2018 completed a Master of Mining Engineering.

Mark is passionate about the community in Bendigo, residing locally with his wife and young family.

Mark has been a member of the board since 2019.

Margaret Keech OAM

Margaret Keech OAM

Margaret has a long list of community service including chairing the Bendigo Academy of Sport since 2007 and holding positions with Scouts Victoria at the local and district levels.

Margaret is a member of the Strathfieldsaye Community Reference Group, a member of the Central Victorian Rural Women's Network, a team member of Dragons Abreast Bendigo and is part of the Girton Grammar School Parents and Friends Association.

Margaret received an Order of Australia Medal in the 2018 Queen’s Birthday Honours for service to the community of Bendigo.

Margaret has been a member of the board since 2019.


Craig Lapsley PSM

Craig Lapsley PSM

Craig Lapsley is one of the most experienced and capable leaders in the Australian Emergency Management sector. He was Victoria’s first Emergency Management Commissioner and the sole Fire Services Commissioner. Prior to being appointed as Commissioner, Craig held several senior executive and operational positions within Victoria’s Fire and Emergency Management agencies.

Craig commenced his career with CFA in Bendigo and was appointed to senior operational positions in the New South Wales Fire Brigade and senior consultant to the National Fire Authority Fiji. He has developed and maintained very strong working relationship across the Emergency Management sectors with agencies in the United States and Canada. Craig has strong skills in strategic and operational leadership, community connection and resilience, innovation and technology and change management.

Craig has been a member of the board since 2019.


Helen Yorsten

Helen Yorsten

Helen Yorston is currently the Manager of the Bendigo Volunteer Resource Centre which she established in 2002. Helen was employed as an Executive Assistant to the CEO and in other various roles at The Bendigo Trust between 2001 and 2005.

Prior to this, Helen held a position as a Project Officer in the Property Department of the City of Greater Bendigo and also spent 18 years working in retail in the Bendigo area.

Helen is Company Secretary & Public Officer for Loddon Mallee Interchange Inc., Chairman of Eco Living Centre Steering Committee, Vice President of 'Friends of Easter Festival', member of Committee of Management for Bendigo Easter Festival, Committee member of Loddon Mallee Emergency Relief Foodbank Steering Committee, Justice of the Peace (Secretary of the Bendigo Branch), volunteer at The Capital Theatre, trustee and member of the Bendigo Community Theatre.

Helen has been a member of the board since 2005.


James Reade - CEO

James Reade - CEO

A born and bred Bendigoian, James Reade, is passionate about Bendigo and his local community. James is a familiar face to Bendigo Heritage Attractions as he previously sat on our board during his four-year term as a City of Greater Bendigo Councillor.

James is a strategic thinker with more than 15 years’ experience in the community development, Local Government, State Government and private sectors.

James is driven by supporting others and driving change that creates communities where all people can belong, contribute and be valued.

Most recently, James has been working as part of the management team with Spotless at the Bendigo Hospital Project.

James joined our team as CEO in 2020.

Management: 

Faye Gair

Faye Gair

Human Resources and Governance Manager
Luke Treble

Luke Treble

Operations Manager
Karl Penrose

Karl Penrose

Central Deborah Gold Mine
Manager
Luke Jenkins

Luke Jenkins

Bendigo Tramways
Workshop Manager