The EPA Board

About EPA board members

The current Board members have expertise in environmental law and science, corporate, financial and risk planning and management, as well as established ties to business and community groups. 

Carolyn Walsh, Acting Chair

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Carolyn is a specialist in industry policy, safety, risk and regulation, with 35 years experience.

Carolyn consults to government and the private sector on regulation, safety and risk management, and has previously worked with the NSW Environment Protection Authority on risk and regulation. Other clients have included Transport for NSW, BHP and the Australian Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development.

She is the Chair and Commissioner of the National Transport Commission and Commissioner at the Australian Transport Safety Bureau; she is the Chair or a member of a number of audit and risk committees including for the Law Enforcement Conduct Commission and Ministry of Health.

In the wake of the 2003 rail tragedy at Waterfall, Carolyn led a project team to establish the Independent Transport Safety and Reliability Regulator and was its Chief Executive from January 2004 until May 2009.

Carolyn has represented the Australian and NSW Governments in national and international fora, including as Minister-Counsellor Industry, Science and Technology at the High Commission in London from 1996-99.

Carolyn has a Bachelor of Economics and qualifications in risk management and auditing, and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

 Tracy Mackey, Chief Executive Officer

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Tracy has extensive professional experience in policy, engagement and advisory across a number of portfolios including town planning, housing, human and social services.

She has deep experience in government having spent time in all three tiers and comes to the EPA from within the NSW public sector – Department of Education. Tracy was most recently the Executive Director Early Childhood Education, leading a division that spanned policy, regulatory responsibilities, program, funding and delivery, during a period of transformation. During her time with the Commonwealth, Tracy held senior executive positions in immigration, health, community and emergency services.

Tracy has also spent time at the executive level at a large not for profit provider, at a multi-national consulting firm and leading her own consulting practice. Complementing her executive roles Tracy brings experience as a non-executive director on a number of Boards.

Chris Knoblanche AM

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Mr Knoblanche is a company director on various boards. Most recently he was a Senior Advisor, Corporate and Investment Banking, Australia and New Zealand for Citigroup. He has been advising local and multinational companies for over 34 years in areas such as corporate strategy, financing, risk control and management. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting and Financial Management) degree, is a Member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and is a Fellow of the Australian Society of Certified Practising Accountants. He has held key Board positions and in 2001 was awarded the Centenary Medal by the Australian Government for service to Australian society through business and the arts.

In June 2014, Chris was honoured as a member in the general division of the Order of Australia for significant service to arts administration, to the community, and to the business and finance sector.

Mr Knoblanche is also a member of the EPA Finance, Audit and Risk Committee.

Julie Savet Ward

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Ms Savet Ward has a Bachelor of Science (Applied Physical Geography) (Honours) degree, is a Master of Landscape Planning and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Ms Savet Ward has over 30 years' experience in science, planning and the environment. She has particular expertise in the regulatory environment for sustainability and a deep understanding of the planning, approval, design, construction and delivery of infrastructure, property and natural resource projects. She has particular skills in brokering and managing relationships between government and the community. Ms Savet Ward is the Chairperson of a charity and a private consulting company.


Elizabeth Wild

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Ms Wild is a solicitor of the Supreme Court of NSW. She holds a Master of Environmental Law, and has over 25 years' experience in environmental law. Ms Wild is currently a Partner and Board member of the law firm Norton Rose Fulbright. She is also a member of the Law Society of NSW, and a member of the Australasian Land and Groundwater Association.

Ms Wild has particular expertise managing issues relating to contaminated land and remediation law. Her understanding of the various contaminated land regulatory systems across Australia has enabled her to provide strategic advice to a range of private sector, Commonwealth and State government clients. Ms Wild is also an expert in pollution law and has assisted clients in managing potential and actual environmental incidents. This depth of experience has given her a unique insight into the regulatory framework against which government agencies and departments operate.

Michael Rennie

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Mr Rennie is a Rhodes Scholar, holding a Master of Arts from Oxford University, as well as bachelor’s degrees in Jurisprudence (Honours) and Law. He is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Mr Rennie was CEO of McKinsey & Company in Australia and New Zealand for five years and a member of the Global Board of the firm until his retirement in late 2017. He has worked extensively for many of Australia’s large industrial companies, as well as mining, oil and gas, telecommunications and government.

As a reflection of his strong interest in environmental issues, Mr Rennie was the founding sponsor of McKinsey’s environment practice in Australia.

He is Deputy Chairman of the Centre for Independent Studies, and board member of the Australian talent ecosystem technology company Livehire

Functions of the EPA Board

The EPA Board:

  • determines the EPA's policies and long-term strategic plans
  • oversees management of the EPA
  • determines when the EPA should prosecute for serious environment protection offences under the Protection of the Environment Administration Act 1991
  • produces guidelines about criminal prosecutions and related legal proceedings
  • advises the NSW Minister for the Environment on any matter relating to the protection of the environment
  • provides the NSW Minister for the Environment with an annual Regulatory Assurance Statement about its performance as the leading NSW environmental regulator.

Disclosure of interest

For more information about the EPA’s governance, including rules about disclosure and conduct, see the see the EPA Annual Report.

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