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Naval Shipbuilding Advisory Board members appointed

naval shipbuilding advisory board members appointed
Naval Shipbuilding Advisory Board members appointed

The Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne has announced the appointment of 10 board members to the Naval Shipbuilding Advisory Board, chaired by Professor Donald Winter.

“The establishment of the advisory board is an important milestone in the government’s naval shipbuilding strategy, ensuring expert, independent advice to government on all aspects of this historical national endeavour,” Minister Pyne said.


“The advisory board is representative of Australian and international expertise and will be a valuable asset in supporting the government’s plans for a secure, sustainable, long-term future for the Australian naval shipbuilding industry.”

The newly appointed members of the Naval Shipbuilding Advisory Board are:

  • Martin Bean, CBE – Vice-chancellor and president of RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia and former vice-chancellor of the Open University in the United Kingdom.
  • Mike Burgess – After leaving the position of chief information security officer for Telstra, he is now a strategic cyber security adviser and consultant. Prior to moving to Telstra he was deputy director for cyber and information security at the then-Defence Signals Directorate (DSD).
  • Emily DeRocco – A former US assistant secretary of labor for employment and training, she is currently working with the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation institute in Detroit.
  • Rear Admiral Thomas Eccles, USN (Ret) – A former chief engineer of the US Naval Sea Systems Command and program manager for both Seawolf and Virginia Class programs. He is currently CEO of Trident Maritime Systems.
  • Irwin Edenzon – A former president of Ingalls Shipbuilding, he led Ingalls’ turnaround including the establishment of the apprentice school based on Newport News schoolhouse. His previous positions at Newport News included management responsibilities with carriers and submarines. He is currently retired.
  • Ronald Finlay, AM - Principal and chief executive of Finlay Consulting and has over 35 years' experience in property, construction, development and infrastructure projects.
  • Vice Admiral William Hilarides, USN (Ret) – A former commander of US Naval Sea Systems Command, he was responsible for the development, delivery and maintenance of all US Navy ships, submarines and naval systems. He also led the SSGN Submarine Conversion Program. He has recently retired from the US Navy and is doing some consulting.
  • Lisa Paul, AO, PSM – Former secretary of the department of education and training, she has held national responsibility for early childhood, schooling, vocational education, skills and training, higher education, international education, research, science, employment, workforce and workplace relations.
  • Becky Stewart – A former vice president of submarines and fleet support at Newport News Shipbuilding, she was responsible for all aspects of the Virginia Class submarine construction program as well as submarine fleet maintenance at Newport News and ongoing fleet support activities conducted worldwide. She has recently retired.
  • Vice Admiral Paul Sullivan, USN (Ret) – Another former commander of US Naval Sea Systems Command, he had prior assignments as chief engineer of the US Naval Sea Systems Command, and as program manager for both Seawolf and Virginia Class submarines. He is currently the director of the applied research laboratory at Pennsylvania State University.

“Over the next two decades, Australia will progress on one of the most extensive and ambitious shipbuilding programs anywhere in the world to modernise the Royal Australian Navy,” Minister Pyne said.

“These plans will transform Australia’s naval shipbuilding industry, generate significant economic growth, sustain Australian jobs over the coming decades and assure the long-term sustainability of this key Australian industry.



“The Naval Shipbuilding Advisory Board will oversee all elements of the government’s naval shipbuilding plans.”

Naval Shipbuilding Advisory Board members appointed
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