The ACCC’s senior leadership comprises members of the Commission (appointed by the Governor-General) and Senior Executive Service (SES) employees. In 2019–20 the ACCC expanded to eight divisions with the establishment of the Consumer Data Right (CDR) Division, headed by a newly appointed Executive General Manager. The leadership team expanded with the introduction of a General Manager to oversee the operational delivery within the CDR Division.
The AER’s senior leadership comprises the AER Board (appointed by the Governor-General) and SES employees who are engaged exclusively on energy matters.
Table 4.1: Terms of appointment-ACCC members at 30 June 2020
31 July 2022
26 July 2022
30 May 2023
29 May 2023 (retiring 3 July 2020)
30 April 2023
26 June 2024
Jim Cox PSM
13 October 2024
25 June 2022
4 August 2021
13 October 2022
Mr Rod Sims
Rod Sims was appointed Chair of the ACCC in August 2011 for an initial five-year term, reappointed for a further three years in August 2016, and reappointed again for a further three years until July 2022, making him the longest serving Chair of the ACCC.
Rod has extensive business and public sector experience. Immediately prior to his appointment to the ACCC, he was the Chairman of the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal of New South Wales (IPART), Commissioner on the National Competition Council, Chairman of Singapore-based InfraCo Asia, Director of UK-based Ingeus Limited, and a member of the Research and Policy Council of the Committee for Economic Development of Australia. Rod was also a Director of Port Jackson Partners Limited, where he advised the CEOs and boards of some of Australia’s top 50 companies on commercial corporate strategy over many years. Rod relinquished all of these roles on becoming Chair of the ACCC.
Rod is also a past Chairman of the NSW Rail Infrastructure Corporation and the State Rail Authority and has been a director of a number of private sector companies. During the late 1980s and early 1990s Rod worked as the Deputy Secretary in the Commonwealth Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, responsible for economic, infrastructure and social policy and the Cabinet Office. He also worked as Deputy Secretary in the Department of Transport and Communications. Between 1988 and 1990 Rod was the Economic Advisor to Australia’s Prime Minister.
Rod holds a first-class honours degree in commerce from the University of Melbourne and a Master of Economics from the Australian National University.
Ms Delia Rickard
Delia Rickard was appointed to the position of Deputy Chair of the ACCC in June 2012 for a period of five years and reappointed for a further five years in July 2017. She is also an Associate Member of the Australian Communications and Media Authority.
Delia has extensive public service experience. Her passion is for consumer protection and she has worked in a variety of senior roles primarily at the ACCC and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.
Delia sits on the ACCC’s enforcement, adjudication, communications, compliance and product safety committees. She also chairs the ACCC’s Northern Australia Insurance Inquiry and is on the Commission’s digital platforms, financial services, Consumer Data Right and electricity boards.
Outside work she is a trustee of the Jan Pentland Foundation—an organisation dedicated to providing scholarships for those who want to work as financial counsellors; and a director of Fairtrade Australia New Zealand. She is also the Chair of Good Shepherd’s Advisory Committee on Financial Inclusion Action Plans and a member of the Consumer Policy Research Centre’s reference group.
Delia was awarded the Public Service Medal in 2011 for her contribution to consumer protection and financial services. She has also been awarded the Society of Consumer Affairs Professionals Lifetime Achievement Award. She holds bachelor’s degrees in law and arts from the University of New South Wales.
Mr Mick Keogh
Mick Keogh was appointed to the ACCC in February 2016, and then as Deputy Chair of the ACCC in 2018. Mick has a long and diverse history of involvement with the agriculture sector, which has included periods of employment as a farm manager, a university researcher, an agribusiness consultant and an agriculture policy advisor.
In 2003 Mick was appointed Executive Director of the Australian Farm Institute—an independent policy research institute that conducts research into strategic policy issues of importance to Australian agriculture. Mick continued in that role until his appointment as Deputy Chair of the ACCC in June 2018.
During his time as Executive Director of the Australian Farm Institute, Mick was also appointed Chairperson of the Australian Government panel which reviewed drought support measures, and he chaired the Australian Government’s National Rural Advisory Council from 2012 to 2015.
Mick was awarded the Order of Australia Medal for services to agriculture in 2015. He holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in wool and pastoral sciences, both obtained at the University of New South Wales.
Mick remains involved in family farming interests in southern New South Wales.
Mick’s role at the ACCC includes involvement in a range of committees, as well as oversight of the small business, franchising and agriculture units of the ACCC.
Ms Cristina Cifuentes
Cristina Cifuentes was appointed a Commissioner of the ACCC in May 2013 for a five-year term. She was reappointed for a further five-year term in 2018. She is an Associate Member of the Australian Communications and Media Authority and a member of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Network of Economic Regulators.
Cristina has a breadth of experience in both the public and private sectors across public policy, finance and utility regulation, including positions at the Reserve Bank of Australia, the New South Wales Treasury and the Australian Securities Commission. She served as the Commonwealth Member of the Australian Energy Regulator between 2010 and 2013. Cristina was a member of the IPART between 1997 and 2006.
Cristina is Chair of the ACCC’s Communications Committee and the ACCC’s Infrastructure Committee. She oversees the ACCC’s regulatory role in relation to key infrastructure in areas such as telecommunications, wheat ports, rail and water.
Before becoming an ACCC Commissioner, Cristina held a number of directorships, including with the Hunter Water Corporation and First State Super Trustee Corporation.
Cristina holds a first-class honours degree in law and a degree in economics.
Ms Sarah Court
Sarah Court was appointed a Commissioner of the ACCC in May 2008, and reappointed for a third term in 2018. She is also an Associate Commissioner of the New Zealand Commerce Commission.
Sarah is a former senior executive lawyer with the Australian Government Solicitor. She brings to her role extensive experience in Commonwealth legal work, including restrictive trade practices, consumer protection and law enforcement litigation.
Sarah oversees the ACCC’s enforcement and litigation program and is Chair of the Commission’s Enforcement Committee, Compliance Committee, Consumer Data Right Committee and Legal Committee. She also sits on the Merger Review Committee and the Adjudication Committee.
Sarah holds a Bachelor of Arts (Jurisprudence) and a Bachelor of Law (Honours) from the University of Adelaide, as well as a Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice from the Australian National University. She is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Mr Stephen Ridgeway
Stephen Ridgeway was appointed a Commissioner of the ACCC in June 2019. Stephen brings a wealth of experience from his previous roles as a lawyer in the private and public sectors. He is widely recognised as one of Australia’s leading competition and consumer lawyers and an expert in the field. In 2018 Stephen retired as a senior partner at King & Wood Mallesons.
Early in his career, Stephen acted for the ACCC and its predecessor, the Trade Practices Commission, in enforcement litigation as a senior lawyer with the Australian Government Solicitor. Since joining private practice in 1998, Stephen has had extensive involvement in merger clearance applications in a wide variety of industries, including energy and telecommunications. He has extensive experience in competition and regulatory enforcement actions, including a number of landmark ACCC enforcement matters in recent years.
During 2011 and 2012 Stephen was National Chairman of the Competition and Consumer Committee of the Law Council of Australia and led consultations with the ACCC and Treasury about policy and enforcement matters. He was a member of the Executive Committee of the Business Law Section of the Law Council of Australia from 2016 to 2018.
Stephen chairs the ACCC’s Merger Review Committee and Adjudication Committee and is a member of the ACCC’s Enforcement Committee, Competition Enforcement Board and Agriculture and Water Project Board. Stephen holds a Bachelor of Science (Honours) from the University of New South Wales and a Bachelor of Laws from the Australian National University.
Australian Energy Regulator
The AER Board has five members, including the Chair, Clare Savage; and Deputy Chair, Jim Cox.
Table 4.2: Terms of appointment-AER members at 30 June 2020
13 October 2024
Jim Cox PSM#
25 June 2022
Eric Groom PSM
2 February 2025
2 February 2025
2 February 2025
Note: #Jim Cox has been a Board member since 2013. He was formally appointed Deputy Chair from 26 June 2020.
Ms Clare Savage
Clare Savage was appointed Chair of the AER in September 2019.
Over the last 17 years, Clare has acquired significant leadership experience in the Australian energy industry and has worked extensively on a range of energy-related matters.
Before joining the AER, Clare was Deputy Chair of the Energy Security Board.
Other previous roles include Executive Director, Policy, Energy and Climate Change, at the Business Council of Australia; executive positions within EnergyAustralia (2012–2015) spanning corporate strategy, business development, policy, public and government affairs; and several roles at the Energy Supply Association of Australia, including Chief Executive Officer.
Clare began her career in the public service—initially in the UK and then at the federal Department of the Treasury.
Clare has a Bachelor of Commerce (Economics) and a Bachelor of Arts (Politics and History) from the University of Melbourne.
Mr Jim Cox PSM
On 26 June 2020 Jim Cox was appointed as the Deputy Chair of the AER Board for a two-year term.
Prior to this appointment, Jim had been reappointed as a full-time state/territory member of the AER Board in May 2017 for a further three-year term. He was initially appointed in an acting capacity in September 2013. He was confirmed in the role for three years from 26 June 2014.
Jim has held positions with the Reserve Bank of Australia, the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet and the Social Welfare Policy Secretariat of the Department of Social Security. He was a principal economist at the Office of the Economic Planning Advisory Council between 1986 and 1989. Between 1989 and 1992 he was a consultant to the New South Wales Cabinet Office. Jim was Principal Adviser to the Government Pricing Tribunal of New South Wales from 1992 and was a member of IPART from January 1996 to September 2013. He was Acting Chairman of IPART in 2004, 2009–10 and 2011 and a visiting fellow at Monash University in 1985.
Jim assisted the New Zealand Government with social policy changes during the early part of 1991.
Jim has also written extensively on economic and social policy issues. This work has been published by, among others, the New Zealand Business Roundtable and the Centre for Independent Studies.
Jim was awarded the Public Service Medal in the Australia Day honours list in 2011 for outstanding public service to IPART.
Ms Catriona Lowe
Catriona Lowe was appointed a member of the AER Board in February 2020.
Before joining the AER she was a non-executive director on range of boards, including the Australian Financial Complaints Authority, the Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority and the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman. She was also principal of a consumer-focused consulting practice.
Ms Lowe has over 20 years of experience in litigation and consumer advocacy. She was Co-CEO of the Consumer Action Law Centre from 2006 to 2013. She has also held senior roles with the Consumers’ Federation of Australian and the ACCC.
Catriona has worked extensively on relevant matters including consumer-focused regulation, behavioural economics and effective enforcement and compliance. She has advocated for consumers across a range of markets, including financial services, telecommunications and energy.
Catriona has a Bachelor of Laws from Northern Territory University (now Charles Darwin University).
Mr Eric Groom PSM
Eric Groom was appointed a member of the AER Board in February 2020.
Before joining the AER he was a senior advisor at Cambridge Economic Policy Associates (CEPA) and consultant to the World Bank. He was also a member of the AER’s Consumer Challenge Panel. He has over 35 years of experience as an economist with a focus on regulation, energy efficiency and greenhouse gas emission reduction.
Eric formerly held senior roles at IPART and the World Bank and has managed price reviews in electricity, gas and water.
Eric has worked extensively on a range of relevant energy matters and in 2015 was awarded the Public Service Medal for his contribution to the development of regulation and reduction in greenhouse gas emissions through the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Scheme and Energy Savings Scheme.
Eric has a Bachelor of Economics (Honours) from Sydney University and a Master of Economics from Macquarie University.
Mr Justin Oliver
Justin Oliver was appointed a member of the AER Board in February 2020.
Justin was formerly a partner of MinterEllison, specialising in competition law and energy regulation. Before joining MinterEllison he was the head of the ACCC’s regulatory law practice, advising on all aspects of energy, communications and transport regulation, and he became the head of legal for the AER upon its creation in 2005. Justin has also worked as a senior lawyer in the Victorian Department of Premier and Cabinet.
For two decades, Justin has acted for governments, regulators and industry participants involved in all parts of Australia’s energy sector. He has worked extensively on a range of relevant issues, including gas pipeline access arrangements and electricity network determinations; energy policy reform; and a range of compliance and enforcement issues under laws governing the operation of wholesale energy markets, energy networks and energy retail businesses.
Justin holds a Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Laws (Honours) from Monash University.