Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority Board
The Board of Management has been the governing body of the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority since the Authority was established in 1999.
The Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority Act 1998 was proclaimed on 1 July 1999 to dissolve the Kings Park Board and rename the organisation the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority. The Act clearly defines the functions and powers of the Authority and allows for the designation of other lands, such as Bold Park, to be placed in the care, control and management of the Authority.
The Botanic Garden and Parks Authority sits within the portfolio of the Hon Reece R Whitby MLA Minister for Environment; Climate Action. He was appointed to the position in December, 2021.
The Board of Management has been the governing body of the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority since the Authority was established. Board members are appointed by the Minister and are eligible for reappointment at the end of their term. The members of the Board are appointed according to their experience in areas relevant to the Authority's activities and meet on a regular basis to consider issues of a strategic and policy nature.
The current Board membership is as follows:
Ms Gail McGowan
Ms McGowan was appointed to the BGPA Board as the Chairperson in 2022 and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and member of the Western Australian Planning Commission Capital City Planning Committee. Ms McGowan was previously the Director General of the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage, has been a member of the Infrastructure WA Board and held senior positions across government, including WorkSafe and the former Department of State Development. Ms McGowan was awarded a Public Service Medal in the 2019 Queen’s Birthday Honours for her outstanding public service to land use, planning and industry development in Western Australia. Ms McGowan was appointed for a three-year term until December 2024.
Ms Sheila McHale
Ms McHale has extensive experience in strategic management and governance. She was Chief Executive Officer of Palmerston Association Inc. for more than nine years, a Member of Parliament in Western Australia for 12 years and a Minister for seven years with responsibility for a range of portfolios including Arts, Disability Services, Youth, Women, Volunteers, Community Services, Consumer Affairs, Tourism and Aboriginal Affairs. Ms McHale is a member of the Governance Institute of Australia and a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. She is currently Chair of the WA Return, Recycle, Renew Ltd and Board director YMCA WA, non-executive director Y Services (Melbourne) as well as a member of the BGPA Board. Ms McHale was reappointed for a further one-year term until May 2024.
Ms Carolyn Turnbull
Ms Turnbull is the Managing Director at Tourism WA, responsible for the operational promotion of Western Australia as an incredible tourism destination and working with industry and government to improve tourism services and experiences across the State. She has more than 20 years of international leadership experience in the tourism, hospitality and aviation industries, and spearheaded the development of the western gateway as Chief Aviation Development Officer at Perth Airport. Ms Turnbull is a graduate of the Cornell School of Hotel Administration Advanced Management Program and holds an Executive MBA in Hospitality Management through Nanyang Business School, Singapore. She is also a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Ms Turnbull was appointed for a three-year term to April 2026.
Ms Barbara Bynder
Ms Bynder is a Whadjuk Ballardong Noongar woman with extensive experience working in cultural heritage and Native Title across government and corporate projects as a university lecturer, consultant, researcher, artist and educator. As a Director/Owner of Karrda Pty Ltd, Ms Bynder works directly with Noongar and other Aboriginal Elders to provide engagement and participation of Indigenous people in major developments. Ms Bynder was appointed until 31 October 2025.
Professor Joshua Byrne
Professor Byrne is an environmental scientist and urban design professional with a national profile as a consultant, researcher and communicator in urban sustainability. Professor Byrne holds a PhD in Environmental Engineering, a Bachelor of Science with Honours in Environmental Science, and Diplomas in Landscape and Amenity Horticulture. He has authored academic publications and industry guides on water sensitive design, energy efficient housing and sustainable urban development. Professor Byrne was appointed until 31 October 2025.
Mr Trevor Hart
Mr Hart has more than 30 years of experience with KPMG and over 20 years as an audit partner. Mr Hart connects KPMG’s mining expertise across all markets. His observations and insights have been sought and published by news feeds and print media and he provides commentary to mining forums and conferences. Mr Hart regularly consults with Audit Committees on matters of good governance, controls and financial reporting. Mr Hart was reappointed for a further two-year term to August 2024.
Professor Stephen van Leeuwen
Professor van Leeuwen is a respected South West Boojarah Wardandi Noongar leader. He has a profound respect for Country and engages and builds collaborative relationships with Traditional Owners and other land managers to co-deliver novel and enduring outcomes for biodiversity conservation, bio-cultural land management, and the stewardship of Country. Professor van Leeuwen is a botanical ecologist, research scientist and senior manager with a diverse research background, extending from threatened flora survey, fire ecology and threatened flora and fauna management through to biological survey, arid zone ecology, plant taxonomy and pollination biology. He has worked for over 39 years across Western Australia, principally in the rangelands (Pilbara and Western Desert) and the Kwongan sandplains. Professor van Leeuwen was appointed for a three-year term until December 2024.
Ms Sally Audeyev
Ms Audeyev is a partner with King and Wood Mallesons, with more than 20 years of experience as a commercial projects lawyer managing native title, heritage, land tenure, regulatory and environmental aspects of project development, implementation and closure. Ms Audeyev works to achieve native title and heritage agreements, Indigenous Land Use Agreements, tenure, environment and project approvals that enable projects to proceed and succeed in the long term. She is at the forefront of significant change practices in Indigenous issues arising from the Juukan Gorge incident including contractual, regulatory, management and governance. Ms Audeyev was appointed until 31 October 2025.
Chief Executive Officer
Alan Barrett commenced as Executive Director of the BGPA on 23 July 2018. Alan Barrett comes to the BGPA from the Public Sector Commission, a central WA government agency that sets human resource management standards and ethical codes and provides leadership in governance effectiveness and integrity.