Major Projects and Industry Forum 2023

The Capricorn Region’s Premier Industry Event

Thank you for your interest in the Major Projects and Industry Forum 2023. For access to the Forum presentations please click here.

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The Major Projects and Industry Forum 2023 brings together key industries and developments in our region, with speakers typically being leaders across a spectrum of industries and presenting on current projects, future industry trends & new economic opportunities.

As an economic hub for Central Queensland, our Region has key strengths in energy, construction, education, health services and tourism. Our strategic location and abundant natural resources positions us positively for future opportunities as our state continues to grow.

Abundant and diverse in productive industry, our region is an economic powerhouse, contributing to livelihoods across the country. Transport, energy and water projects are expected to continue to sustain elevated levels of development through to 2025.


Call us on 07 4927 2055 or email us at for more information.
Registrations close Tuesday 17th October.

Date: Thursday 19th October 2023

Frenchville Sports Club
105 Clifton Street
North Rockhampton
Queensland 4701

Member Rate: $109.00
Non-Member Rate: $169.00

Event Contact
Capricorn Enterprise
Phone: 07 4927 2055

Sponsorship Prospectus
Cancellation Policy

Presenting Organisations



Gene Tunny
Director, Adept Economics

Gene Tunny is the Director of Adept Economics, a Brisbane-based economic consulting firm. He is a former Australian Treasury official who has managed teams in Treasury’s Industry and Budget Policy divisions. Gene has internationally recognised expertise in economic policy analysis and advice.

Gene is also the author of Queensland Economy Watch, a blog dedicated to providing news and views on the Queensland economy, from managing growth to investing in the right infrastructure and beyond. His podcast, Economics Explained, offers concise explanations of economic concepts and debates from experts on topics including government spending and economic growth and global population growth.

Mick Crowe
Chief Operating Officer, Bravus Mining and Resources

Mick Crowe has more than 30-years’ experience working across the domestic and international resources and construction sectors. He is married to Narelle and together they have four daughters Emerson, Ella, Maelin and Ashlan.
He graduated with a degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1989 and commenced his career in estimating and construction working in the Queensland coal fields on draglines and process plants. This progressed to project control work on the national rail expansion in Melbourne, followed by project controls on the expansion of the Freeport Mine in Indonesia, cementing his credentials in project controls and project management.
He later gained exposure to mining operations as Operations Support Superintendent in Florida for IMC Agrico in a business turnaround role working across their six opencut phosphate mines.
In 1995 Mick was one of five shareholders to start an engineering company working in the Queensland coal fields. Mick and his partners built a maintenance and construction business peaking at 1,300 employees with national operations, which Mick ran until 2019. His roles included Project Controls Manager, GM Maintenance Operations, COO and CEO. During this time he built, maintained and operated most forms of equipment for both underground and open cut mining. The business established a strong reputation for delivery, exceptional community engagement and was widely recognised for its high-performance culture.
Most recently Mick established DRA’s China office in Dalian to foster relationships with suppliers of equipment and mining companies seeking to invest. This has provided a functional network of engineering, OEM and investment relationships inside China allowing African and Australian operations to harness these capabilities to benefit local projects.
Mick has held board positions with Queensland Health and Safety, Resource Industry Network, Coral Sea Research Institute, Regional Economic Development.

Peter Trim
Project Director, Rockhampton Ring Road

Peter Trim has over 40 years’ experience with the Department Transport and Main Roads (TMR) as a Road Designer, Transport Planner, Program and Project Manager. He has worked extensively across Central and Northern Queensland including management and leadership roles as the District Director North-western District, Deputy Regional Director North Queensland and District Director for Fitzroy, based here in Rockhampton since 2014.

Peter was awarded a Public Service Medal in 2012 for his work to identify and preserve indigenous cultural heritage across the North-western district; the development of an indigenous employment, business development and training model on the Alliances for the Barkly Highway upgrade program; and his work in leading the state-wide technical service area within the Roads Business Group of the TMR.

Prior to his role as the Project Director for the Rockhampton Ring Road project, Peter was the District Director with the Infrastructure Management and Delivery Division of TMR for the Fitzroy District based in Rockhampton. During that period, he was responsible for leading the delivery of some of the key recommendations of the Fitzroy River Flood Plain and Road Planning Study (2011) including construction of Yeppen South crossing of the floodplain south of Rockhampton, duplication of the Capricorn Highway, and duplication of the Bruce Highway in Parkhurst with the completion of the Rockhampton Northern Access Upgrade.

In 2021 he took on the role of Project Director for the $1.065 billion Rockhampton Ring Road project for the detailed design and delivery phases, where he is piloting the development of a collaborative delivery framework for application to other major infrastructure projects across the transport portfolio.

Jay Merritt
Rookwood Weir Project Alliance Stakeholder Relations Manager, Sunwater

Jay has more than 20 years’ experience working across all facets of corporate communication for the water, energy and transport industries. For the past three years he has overseen stakeholder engagement activities during the construction of Rookwood Weir and its six enabling projects.

Previously he worked for in Queensland’s energy industry where he managed stakeholder engagement activities for a range of electricity generation sites located across Queensland. Prior to that he spent 10 years working in London managing media relations for British Rail and British Airways.

Jay is passionate stakeholder engagement professional who strongly advocates for early and authentic engagement for project stakeholders.

Dr Phillip Moulds OAM
Headmaster, Rockhampton Grammar School

Adjunct Professor Phillip Moulds OAM has been the Headmaster of The Rockhampton Grammar School for the past thirteen years. The Rockhampton Grammar School is a non-denominational co-educational boarding school of 1734 students (324 boarders), catering for students from early childhood to Year 12. Phillip is passionate about the development of leadership within schools (governance, students, teachers, school leaders), teaching and learning, global education and school based change.
Before joining The Rockhampton Grammar School, Phillip had worked at Brisbane Grammar School for eighteen and a half years, where he held a variety of positions including Deputy Headmaster, Deputy Head of Boarding, Head of Science and Head of Chemistry. Also, for fourteen years, Phillip worked as a lecturer for the Graduate School of Education at Harvard University on-line in the areas of educational leadership and using data to inform learning.
Phillip earned his PhD in Education from the University of Queensland, investigating the planning, teaching and assessment of higher order thinking processes and dispositions. Phillip also possesses a Bachelor of Educational Studies with First Class Honours, Postgraduate Diploma of Education, Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Music, all from the University of Queensland.
Phillip is Chairman of the ISQ Board (January 2023) and has been an ISQ Board member for the past five years. He was the Chair of the ISQ Education Subcommittee for four years. He is a Graduate of the AICD Directors Course and has served on the Anglicare Central Queensland Board and the Board of the Australian Boarding Schools Association.

Dr Emma McCahon
Health Service Chief Executive

Emma started her career in health as a paediatrician, has 15 years’ experience in senior leadership and management roles in New South Wales Health and has held senior executive roles in large health services since 2011. Emma has strong clinical background and experience in leading turnaround for organisations to achieve financial, clinical, and cultural targets and outcomes.

Before joining CQ Health in April 2022, Emma was Executive Director Medical Services at Western Sydney Local Health District where there are 11,000 staff and 190,000 ED presentations a year. At Western Sydney, Emma was professional lead for senior and junior medical staff, responsible for research ($70m clinical trial revenue) and Clinical Education as well as the Pandemic Operations Centre Controller. During her time at Western Sydney Emma also acted in the role of Executive Director Operations (Chief Operating Officer) and Chief Executive for the service, particularly notably during heightened periods of COVID-19 outbreaks in New South Wales.

Emma was Director of Clinical Operations of the Sydney Children’s Hospitals Network for four years from 2015, where she had had oversight of the clinical operations of Children’s Hospital at Westmead, Sydney Children’s Hospital, and several State-wide services such as: New Born and Paediatric Emergency Transport Services; Perinatal Services Network; Children’s Court Clinic; Poisons Information Service and Bear Cottage (Hospice) and responsibility for managing a budget of $740m and a 5000 staff, including nursing, allied health, junior and senior medical staff and clinical support staff.

Michael Thomson
Deputy Director Institute for Future Farming Systems, CQUniversity

Michael Thomson is the Deputy Director of CQUniversity’s Institute for Future Farming Systems and manages communications and stakeholder engagement for university’s agriculture, science and environment research teams. 

Prior to joining CQUniversity in 2016, Michael worked as a senior consultant for Australia’s largest agribusiness public relations agency, Cox Inall Communications, leading projects for clients including the Beef Australia expo, Meat & Livestock Australia, Woolworths, the Sheep CRC, Grains Research & Development Corporation, the Livestock Biosecurity Network, the Australian Animal Welfare Strategy, and RIRDC’s National Weeds Research Program.

His career began as a rural journalist, starting as a cadet reporter in Sydney for NSW’s The Land newspaper. He later worked for titles including the Northern Star in Lismore, and for the Queensland Country Life based in Rockhampton, and progressed to roles including Fairfax Agricultural Media’s national political reporter based at Parliament House, Canberra, and national online editor for Fairfax’s FarmOnline group of news sites.

Dr Vicki Richmond
Board Chairperson and Co-founder, Fitzroy Community Hospice, Central Queensland

Vicki Richmond is an experienced Specialist General Practitioner and Board Chairperson of Fitzroy Community Hospice – a grass roots, community driven project initiated in late 2020 in response to shared concern regarding the palliative care available in Central Queensland. Vicki brings her clinical skill, lived experience and postgraduate Health Management expertise to the Hospice project and leads a team of skilled and dedicated volunteers who are in the midst a $10.5 million capital infrastructure project as part of the establishment of Central Queensland’s first Hospice service. 

Kim Hetherington
Director, Workforce Capability, Construction Skills Queensland

Kim Hetherington is the Director, Workforce Capability, leading CSQ’s specialist workforce planning services, data, and research teams. Kim is responsible for strategically monitoring major project activity across the state, identifying opportunities to support labour and skills interventions via workforce planning activities – programs and services that are shaped by identified trends and themes. 

Kim brings over 25 years’ experience in learning and organisational development, workforce planning, operations and project management; accrued from roles in mining and resources, civil infrastructure, building and construction, energy, telecommunications and science. She has worked in the private sector and state and federal government, and is passionate about infrastructure projects that create long-term, positive impacts for the community and the economy.

Christina Green
Principal Engineer Connections Policy and Process, Energy Queensland

Christina Green is the Principal Engineer Connections Policy Process at Ergon Energy and Energex, working in the Network Connections team. She has worked at Ergon Energy for fifteen years, with extensive experience in demand management, network planning, generation and customer standards, strategy and network connections.

Her work focusses on the technical and policy aspects the connections process, from small-scale solar systems to large batteries, wind farms, and solar farms, concentrating on the rapidly changing regulatory landscape to ensure a secure and safe energy transition for all customers. Christina is a Rockhampton local having lived in Central Queensland since she was four and is passionate about enabling regional development.

Dr Brendan McAvoy
Executive General Manager Delivery, Squadron Energy

With more than 20 years of experience across the public and private sectors, Brendan has delivered major projects in renewables, transport, water and metals production.

He holds a PhD in Robotics, along with a BEng in Aeronautical Engineering and is Chartered Mechanical Engineer.​

Brendan is passionate about delivering high quality renewable energy assets which contribute to a greener environment for Australia.

Peter Woodall
Manager Future Pathways and Transition, Stanwell Corporation

Peter Woodall is an experienced senior manager in with over 30 years in the energy industry and a demonstrated history of leading people, managing plant and influencing change across multiple assets throughout Queensland.

His current role involves developing a future pathways strategy and framework to prepare Stanwell for the transition to a low carbon future. His area of focus includes skilling a current and future workforce for the transformation to a renewable generation, energy storage and green hydrogen industry.

Peter’s recent collaborations have included the Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan, the Qld Energy Industry Council and workers charter, the Queensland future energy workforce strategy, the Future Energy Jobs Guild and the Regional Transformation Stakeholder Advisory Committee for Central Queensland.

Peter’s passion is working with current and emerging workforce about the opportunities the energy transition presents now and into the future.His deep energy experience includes managing the operation and maintenance of large coal fired power stations, delivery of major plant overhauls and projects, leading structural change through effective communication and a broad range of negotiation and stakeholder engagement skills.

Ben Hillier
Lead Project Manager, Central Queensland Power

Ben is the Lead Project Manager for the Central Queensland Power (CQP) portfolio at RES Australia where he manages a team of Development Project Managers in delivering large scale renewable energy projects in Queensland from early stages through to notice to proceed and beyond.

Ben is passionate about Queensland’s necessary transition away from traditional energy sources being rolled out in a way that is based on a strong safety culture and delivers economic, environmental and social benefits (both locally and to the region).

Ben has a Masters of Project Management, a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering and a Bachelor of Science majoring in Environmental Management.