New national president for Property Council

Michael O’Brien takes the reins from Charter Hall Managing Director and Group CEO David Harrison.

The Announcement:

The Property Council of Australia today announced Managing Director of QIC Real Estate, Michael O’Brien, as its new National President.

The Property Council represents the leading listed and private organisations that invest in, own, manage and develop property across Australia’s residential and non-residential property sectors.

Our members shape cities for the better and create prosperity, jobs and sustainable communities across the country, leading an industry that employs 1.4 million people.  

Over the past 54 years, the Property Council has grown to represent over 2,600 corporate members, with an equal number of property professionals actively serving on our Committees around Australia.

Mr O’Brien takes the reins from Charter Hall Managing Director and Group CEO David Harrison who concluded his two-year term at today’s Property Council of Australia board meeting.

With more than 30 years’ experience in the property industry, Mr O’Brien is responsible for driving real estate investment and business strategy for QIC.

Stockland Managing Director and CEO Tarun Gupta and Dexus Executive General Manager, Funds Management Deborah Coakley have both been elected as National Vice Presidents.

With more than 25 years’ experience in the property industry, Mr Gupta was appointed to the role of Managing Director and CEO at Stockland in 2021.

Ms Coakley is responsible for managing Dexus’s funds management business.

She has been a change leader across the property sector, human resources and in consulting, having worked at Deloitte and Qantas, and as a Past President of the Property Council Capital Markets Division.

Mr O’Brien said it was an honour to be elected President of the Property Council of Australia and he was committed to further elevating the organisation’s respected advocacy work.

“It is a privilege to be elected by my industry peers to this important role, and to represent an industry that creates more jobs for Australians than any other,” Mr O’Brien said.

“The property sector shapes how we live, how we work, and our opportunities, and it underpins the strength of our economy, providing jobs in every city, region and town in Australia.

“I look forward to promoting our thought leadership on real solutions to Australia’s housing, planning, investment and net zero challenges.

As a Property Champion of Change, I will also ensure the increasing and welcome diversity of our industry is reflected in our leadership on creating inclusive workforces and workplaces,” he said.

Mr O’Brien paid tribute to the work of outgoing President David Harrison.

“I acknowledge the exceptional industry leadership of David Harrison. David successfully championed the industry and the Property Council through one of the most challenging periods in recent memory,” Mr O’Brien said.

“David and our Board worked tirelessly so the sector could underpin Australia’s economic resilience through the pandemic, working with governments to keep tenants viable, to keep construction open, and to implement the confidence-creating HomeBuilder program.

“That contribution was at its greatest as the industry worked through the recovery and showed itself to be the engine room for job creation. A proud legacy,” he said.

Property Council of Australia Chief Executive Mike Zorbas said he was delighted to work with Mr O’Brien.

“Michael brings deep insight from across the sector and around the country,” Mr Zorbas said.

“Michael is a change agent whose interest in tackling the housing supply and affordability crisis, planning our cities better, smarter investment settings and showcasing the globally recognised sustainability credentials of Australia’s property sector, is inspiring,” he said.

Mr Zorbas also acknowledged the contribution of Immediate Past President David Harrison.

“David is a compelling leader. His insight and passion to advance the industry are remarkable,” Mr Zorbas said.

“We are grateful for his impressive commitment and achievements on our behalf and will continue to prize both in the years ahead,” he said.

Mr Harrison will assume the role of Immediate Past President and under the organisation’s constitution, will remain a member the Property Council Board for a further two years in that capacity.

The full Board is as follows:

AnastasiaClarkeChief Financial OfficerThe GPT Group
AnneJolicDirector of Operations, DevelopmentLendlease
AnoukDarlingChief Executive OfficerScape
AnthonyBoydChief Executive OfficerFrasers Property Australia
AnthonyMellowesCEORegion Group
ArabellaRohdeSenior Development ManagerISPT
CarmelHouriganOffice CEOCharter Hall
DaleConnorChief Executive Officer AustraliaLendlease
DavidHarrisonManaging Director and Group CEOCharter Hall
DeborahCoakleyExecutive General Manager, Funds ManagementDexus 
ElliottRusanowChief Executive OfficerScentre Group
FabrizioPerilliManaging DirectorPerifa
LukeFraserChief Executive OfficerHoward Smith Wharves
MichaelO’BrienManaging DirectorQIC
NickEmmettManaging DirectorEmmett Property
NikkiRobinsonPartnerClayton Utz
PhilRowlandChief Executive Officer, PacificCBRE
RichardKilbaneChief Operating OfficerHawaiian
StuartPenklisCEO, Development – Residential, Commercial & Mixed UseMirvac Projects
TarunGuptaManaging Director and Chief Executive OfficerStockland
TonyRandelloChief Executive OfficerAveo Group

Source: The Property Council of Australia

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