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SEQ Mayors Forum

  • 24 Feb 2021
  • 11:45 AM - 2:00 PM
  • The Hilton, Brisbane CBD


This event is now SOLD OUT

In partnership with the Australian Israel Chamber of Commerce

SEQ Mayors Forum

This is an opportunity to hear from 4 Mayors of SEQ Councils and find out what they are thinking about, in the aftermath of COVID

They will be asked about 
  • Current priorities 
  • Is this a chance to reset or transform ?
  • Changes to council approach to land use 
  • Identification of new industries that have emerged
  • The opportunity for green initiatives
  • Future and role of CBDs & satellite hubs / productive precincts
  • What will your city look like post Covid and why 


 Teresa Harding
Mayor of Ipswich City Council

 Adrian Schrinner
Brisbane Lord Mayor


 Karen Williams
Mayor of Redland City

 Mark Jamieson, Mayor at
Sunshine Coast Regional Council

Panellists and Speakers

Cr Adrian Schrinner
Lord Mayor of Brisbane


Adrian Schrinner became Lord Mayor in April 2019 following the retirement of Graham Quirk. He was re-elected in March 2020, along with his team of Councillors. As well as being one of Brisbane’s youngest ever Lord Mayors he came to the role with significant on the job experience, having previously served as Deputy Mayor for eight years, and as a Councillor since 2005.
As Lord Mayor of Australia’s largest local government, Cr Schrinner has set out a distinct vision for the future of Brisbane, with major investments in new bridges for pedestrians and cyclists, and record investment in parks and public open space – including Council’s Victoria Park vision which will create Brisbane’s biggest new park in 50 years.

He is excited that work is now underway on the turn-up-and-go Brisbane Metro project – an Australian first that will revolutionise public transport in Brisbane.

Following the election, Cr Schrinner reshaped Brisbane’s Civic Cabinet to reflect his administration’s priorities, adding new portfolio areas of City Standards and the Night-time Economy, as well as creating a coronavirus recovery taskforce.

Cr Schrinner lives in the suburb of Carindale with his wife Nina and their four young children. Both as Lord Mayor and as a dad, his goal is to ensure the Brisbane of tomorrow is better than the Brisbane of today.

Cr Teresa Harding
Mayor of Ipswich

Teresa is a working mother with three adult children and has over 30 years’ experience in business, government and not-for-profit leadership and over 15 years’ experience leading large teams and delivering value while managing annual budgets of around $150 million.

Teresa currently works in the Queensland Government leading and managing open data and for her employer.  In this role she works across different departments, with Queensland councils, other state governments, the federal government, industry and academia.

Prior to that she led the Strike Reconnaissance Systems Program Office in the Department of Defence where she was responsible for the all the maintenance and later disposal of the F111 fighter jet. In this role Teresa had 100 military and civilian direct staff and over 950 contractors reporting to her, an annual budget of $150 million and a $2.5 billion asset portfolio to manage.  Her main claim to fame was when she was given the opportunity to fly the F111 in 2010.  A gift from the Air Force in recognition of her service and dedication to keeping the F111 mission capable.

Prior to joining Defence, Teresa worked in the private sector as an Account Manager and Regional Sales Manager for two information technology firms.  She also owned and operated a carpet cleaning business in Sydney and joined the Army when she first left school.

Teresa is a lifelong volunteer, she is an active Rotarian with the Ipswich City Club, was the President of the Co-ordinating Organisation for the Disabled in Ipswich, a former Board Member of the Ipswich Chamber of Commerce, former Board Member of Focal Community Services and has been on the Parents and Citizens Association committee of all her children’s schools.

Teresa holds a Masters in Management, Post Graduate Diploma in Management, Post Graduate Certificate in Information Technology, Diploma in Small Business Enterprises and has completed the Australian Institute of Company Directors Course.

Teresa and her husband Steven have three adult children and they live in Raceview.  Steven was born and raised in Ipswich and is in his 30th year of service in the Royal Australian Air Force and their youngest child is a serving member of the Army.

No matter the challenge, Teresa has done what it takes to succeed. With your help, she is ready to take on her next challenge—serving you on the Ipswich City Council.

Cr Karen Williams
Mayor of Redland

Councillor Karen Williams was sworn in as Mayor of Redland City on May 15, 2012 with a commitment to enhancing the cultural, social and economic capital of Redland City. She was re-elected in 2016 and again 2020, making her the longest serving Mayor and second longest serving leader in the history of the Redlands.

Born and raised on her family’s farm in Capalaba, Cr Williams was formerly the Councillor for Division 9 (Capalaba) where, over two consecutive terms (2004-2012), she worked hard to deliver vital community infrastructure including the Capalaba Skate Park and disability housing. She also established and facilitated a volunteer mentoring program for students at risk of disengaging from school. This has now been rolled out to other regions.

With a background in business, finance and entertainment, Cr Williams also offers a long association with RedFest (formerly the Redland Strawberry Festival) and was part of the executive that saved this vital community event from extinction.

She believes Redlands Coast is the best place to live, work, learn, play and invest and is dedicated to making sure that Redland City is recognised as the jewel in the crown of South East Queensland with assets including the island communities of North Stradbroke Island, Russell Island, Macleay Island, Lamb Island, Karragarra Island and Coochiemudlo Island.

Cr Williams prides herself for her strong, caring and inclusive community focus, for being hard working and getting the job done. Her top priorities are: Continuing to put the people of Redland City first; identifying efficiencies within Council to ensure it is even more responsive to the people; tackling cost of living issues; building a new economy based on innovation; supporting local business and attracting new business investment and new jobs to the Redlands; turning challenges into opportunities for the city and its residents; building partnerships to address the backlog of infrastructure; and putting Redlands Coast on a sound long-term financial footing.

Cr Williams is Patron of 26 community organisations. She is a Trustee of CEDA – Committee for Economic Development of Australia, a member of the Local Government Association of Queensland Policy Executive, Executive Member of the Council of Mayors (South East Queensland) and Australian Local Government Association. Other roles include:

  • Director – Healthy Land and Water
  • Board Member – Local Government Mutual Services
  • Board Member – Economic Development Advisory Board
  • Member – South East Queensland Regional Plan Committee
  • Member – South East Queensland Council of Mayors Resilient Rivers Taskforce
  • Chair – Local Disaster Management Group
  • Member – Australian Government Local Government Domestic, Family and Sexual Violence Prevention Project Reference Committee
  • Deputy Chair – South East Queensland Council of Mayors Waste Working Group 


Cr Mark Jamieson
Mayor of Sunshine Coast

Mark Jamieson has led a distinguished career in both the public and private sectors.  He has approached all his roles with the personal ethos to not only do well, but do good.  

Mark Jamieson has been the Mayor of the Sunshine Coast Council (the fifth largest local government in Queensland) since April 2012.  He was re-elected for a second term on 19 March 2016 with 76% of the vote on a two candidate preferred basis.

He is reshaping the Sunshine Coast economy, strengthening community programs and supporting and building on the region’s already outstanding environmental credentials.  

This includes driving a major regional infrastructure program that has the most innovative mix of public and private investment opportunities in Australia.  It is underpinned by a clear 20 year blueprint established for a new economy for the Sunshine Coast and which is already delivering results. 

Mayor Jamieson’s successful leadership of council is evidenced by:

  • achieving five consecutive surpluses, consistent unqualified audit reports and under his stewardship, council has achieved the highest Queensland Treasury Corporation financial sustainability rating of any council in Queensland. 
  • the region has now been independently rated as having the second strongest performing economy in Queensland and has experiencing some of the highest levels of business confidence in the last four CCIQ-Westpac Business Confidence surveys.
  • the Sunshine Coast now has an unemployment rate of 4.7% - lower than the Queensland average, and more than half what it was when he was first elected as Mayor. Youth unemployment has also declined by more than 5%.
  • council has acquired and now manages one of the most extensive municipal conservation estates in south east Queensland.  It has achieved national recognition for a number of its environmental programs.

On 20 October 2016, Mayor Jamieson was elected overwhelmingly by his Mayoral and Councillor colleagues from across Queensland to serve as President of the Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ) for the next four years.  

In just six months since his election as President, Mayor Jamieson has been able to deliver:

  • a strategic review of the five commercial entities owned by the LGAQ and a blueprint for a fully integrated commercial operation that has a sharper focus on the needs of Queensland councils
  • a reinvigorated approach and fresh advocacy plan for the LGAQ to better position local governments in the 21st century
  • a major win with the Federal Government in resolving long standing issues associated with the management and eligibility arrangements for the Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements. 

Mayor Jamieson also sits on the Board of Directors for the Australian Local Government Association and the Council of Mayors South East Queensland.  
Prior to his election as Mayor in 2012, Mayor Jamieson enjoyed an extensive career of nearly 30 years in chief executive and senior leadership roles in media and publishing.  He had strategic and operational responsibilities for customer satisfaction, staff development, business performance and shareholder growth.  In 2006, he was appointed Chief Executive of APN Australian Publishing, where he was accountable for newspaper assets valued in excess of $1 billion.  

Mayor Jamieson has also brought his leadership skills and passion for the community to many representative and not-for-profit organisations with which he has been associated, including as:

  • Director of Pacific Area Newspapers Publishers Association
  • Director of the Sunshine Coast Helicopter Rescue Service
  • Member of Rotary Clubs of Hervey Bay, Toowoomba East and Rockhampton Sunrise
  • Patron of SunnyKids, the Beacon Foundation, The Friendship Force of the Sunshine Coast and the Sunshine Coast Sports Federation
  • Vice Patron of the Maroochydore Surf Life Saving Club and Surf Life Saving Queensland


The Moderator

John Aitken
Industry Ambassador, Australia-Israel Chamber of Commerce

Simon WhiteJohn Aitken is Managing Director of Inspiring Cities, specialising in economic development of globally competitive cities; inspiring precincts, destinations, tourism and major events providing placemaking strategies and advice. Since 1980, John founded many of Queensland’s major event traditions including Riverfestival and Riverfire before overseeing the Sydney Royal Easter Show. During his tenure as CEO of Brisbane’s economic development organisation Brisbane Marketing (2008 ~ 2017), some of his team’s achievements included establishing Brisbane Australia’s new world city positioning globally, delivering over $4billion economic outcomes. John is a board member of Tourism Transport Forum (TTF), Brisbane’s Urban Futures Board, Queensland Community Fund Board of Governors, Redlands Economic Development Board, Mackay Priority Development Area Advisory Committee and Global Games Brisbane 2019 (for athletes with intellectual disabilities).

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