The NRCL is a not for profit company limited by guarantee. The board has committee structure comprising a Performance Appraisal Committee and an Audit and Risk Committee was established in 2012. A Governance Charter was adopted in 2012 and is reviewed annually.

STF1944 Ltd is the trustee for the Natural Resources Conservation Trust.

Key documents

Board of Directors

Ken King
Ken King

Dip. For. (Cres), B.For Sc (Hons) Melb

Ken King (Chair of the NRCL Board and Director of STF1944 Ltd)

Appointed to 2021

Ken King is a former Deputy Secretary with the Victorian Department of Sustainability and Environment. In the Department he held senior executive positions covering Forestry and Bushfire policy; Parks and Reserve Management; and Regional Service Delivery. He has had extensive experience in forestry, fire, fauna and flora management and operations in Victoria. He was employed in the Victorian public service since 1974 until his retirement in 2008. He also has experience in public administration; policy and strategy and governance. He was previously Regional Manager for the Department of Conservation, Forests and Lands through to the Department of Natural Resources and Environment in South Gippsland, North West and Port Phillip Regions. Mr King was awarded the National Medal for Fire Services in 1989 and was previously a Board Member of the Phillip Island Nature Park (1995–2003); the Country Fire Authority (2003–2012); Parks Victoria (2005–2012); the Australian Research Centre for Urban Ecology (2012–2017); and Board Member and Deputy President of the Metropolitan Fire and Emergency Services Board (2008–2017). He was also the Departmental representative on the Yarram Land Protection Regional Advisory Committee and the Port Phillip and Westernport Catchment Management Authority.

Currently Mr King is a:
* Board Member, Wannon Water Board (2017–)
* Chair, Company Secretary and Public Officer of the Natural Resources Conservation League of Victoria (2003–)
* Director and Company Secretary of the Habitat Trust Melbourne (1995–)
* Director and Deputy Chair of the Bjarne K Dahl Trust (trading as Eucalypt Australia) (2009–)
* Independent Member, Risk and Finance Committee, Colac Area Health (2014 –)
* Part time Senior Project Manager, Victorian Planning Authority (strategic advice on biodiversity, native vegetation, bushfire management and Aboriginal cultural heritage management) (2008 –)

John Hutchins
Jon Hutchins

MComm.Law, Grad Dip Agri, BBus, CPA, FAICD, SA-Fin

Jon Hutchins (Chair of the STF1944 ATF Natural Resources Conservation Trust & Director of NRCL Ltd)

Appointed to 2023

With over 20 years management experience in the public, private and ‘not-for-profit’ sectors Jonathan brings vast commercial experience to the Board and a background in corporate governance. In addition to board and management positions in the health and natural resource sectors, he has had experience in Australia and the U.S.A. with Andersen Consulting, management positions with multi-national agribusiness organisations, senior management experience with Coles Myer.

Jon is the past CEO for the Mt Hotham Resort Management Board and a Board member of Tourism North East.

He is a trustee of a philanthropic trust and former Chair of the Finance and Audit Committee at Swimming Victoria.

A strong affinity with regional Victoria has seen Jonathan involved with many community groups in regional Victoria including the Mansfield District Hospital and National Alpine Museum of Australia.

Dr Hugh Stewart
Dr Hugh Stewart

PhD, MSc (Forestry), BSc (Forestry), Dip. Forestry


Dr Hugh Stewart (Director of STF1944 ATF Natural Resources Conservation Trust & NRCL Ltd)

Appointed to 2022

Hugh works in natural resource management, specialising in sustainable management of forest resources, integrated land-use and social dimensions of forestry.

He has worked in the public and private sectors in Australia and overseas for 40 years, including two years in Zimbabwe on a social forestry project. He has worked as an independent consultant since 2009, on such projects as socio-economic analyses of the forestry industry, community forestry in Indonesia through the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research, environmental auditing, assessment of the conservation values of forests, and landcare contributions to human wellbeing.

Since 1992 Hugh has worked with family members to re-develop the 229 hectare Stewart family farm at Deans Marsh to achieve sustainable land-use by integrating agroforestry with prime lamb production.

Hugh is a member of the Advisory Committee of the Otway Agroforestry Network and a member of the committee of Friends of the Barwon. He is also a member of the Institute of Foresters Australia and a member of the Social Chamber of the Forest Stewardship Council of Australia.

Nicola Ward

Nicola Ward (Director of NRCL Ltd)

Appointed to 2021

Nicola Ward has over twenty years experience in state and local government. She brings strong skills in public policy, and strategy and implementation, particularly in natural resource management and land use change.

As Manager, City Planning at the City of Casey, Nicola oversaw the strategic development, land use and infrastructure planning of one of Australia’s fastest growing and largest cities. Her portfolio of responsibilities included strategic planning and growth area development, infrastructure contributions, integrated transport planning, stormwater and water sensitive urban design, environment and heritage management, and recreation and open space planning. She has held management roles in organisational strategy, strategic development, sustainability and environment.

Nicola holds a Masters degree in Social Science (Environment and Planning) with Distinction and an Honours degree in Social Science. She has managed a property for conservation and small-scale food production.

Nicola is a member of the Institute of Public Administration, the Planning Institute of Australia and the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Emily Johnstone
Emily Johnstone

LLB (Hons), BSc

Emily Johnstone (Director of NRCL Ltd)

Appointed to 2021

Emily is a Senior Associate at Allens lawyers. She is an environment and planning specialist, with additional experience in land tenure and access issues, compulsory acquisition, Aboriginal cultural heritage and native title.

Emily has several years’ experience advising commercial, government and not-for-profit clients on a broad range of environmental, planning and property-related legal issues. She has a particular interest in renewable energy, remediation and redevelopment of contaminated land, and strategic approval and land assembly issues for energy and infrastructure projects.

Emily is a member of the Law Institute of Victoria’s Environmental Issues Committee and Planning & Local Government Committee, as well as the Allens Sustainability Committee. She is passionate about the environment and sustainable development, and combining her interests in the natural world with the practice of law.

Outside of work, Emily is a keen bushwalker and (very) amateur gardener.

Julia Hunter
Julia Hunter


Julia Hunter (Director of STF1944 ATF Natural Resources Conservation Trust & NRCL Ltd)

Appointed to 2021

Julia’s experience includes leadership roles in tourism, environment, retail and not-for-profit. She is driven by the powerful connections that can be built between an organisation’s social purpose and sustainable profits.

As the Director for Corporate Responsibility at InterContinental Hotels Group, Julia led the implementation of an environmental management program across a global portfolio of 5,000 hotels and launched a hotel training program for disadvantaged youth.

As the Global Head of Environment for ANZ Banking Group, Julia led efforts to reduce the environment impacts of the bank’s operations including sustainable design of the bank’s property portfolio. Currently, she is a Strategy and Marketing consultant for alpine, retail and charity organisations bringing a focus on sustainable tourism, data-driven decision making and digital marketing.

Julia is a member of the Alpine Resorts Coordinating Council Board and a former member of the Mt Hotham Resort Management Board reflecting her keen interest in the natural environment.  She is also a board member and former CEO of the Aussie Farmers Foundation.

Julia has degrees in Marketing and Management and is a Member of the Institute of Community Directors. She is passionate about conserving our amazing natural environment for current and future generations to enjoy.

Catherine Debreceny SQUARE 2019 3
Catherine Debreceny


Catherine Debreceny (Director of STF1944 ATF Natural Resources Conservation Trust & NRCL Ltd)

Appointed to 2021

Cath is a Partner in the Maddocks Commercial Group with significant national and international experience in mergers, acquisitions and disposals.

Cath provides a broad range of corporate and commercial advice and works with portfolio and private companies on day to day commercial requirements as well as critical and commercially sensitive transactions where the client its making a key acquisition or divestment.

Cath has a Masters in Marine Physiology and a keen interest in sustainable development.

Cath has been recognised in Best Lawyers 2021, Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2018 and Doyle’s Guide 2018.

Andrew Mahar
Andrew Mahar

Andrew Mahar (Director of STF1944 ATF Natural Resources Conservation Trust)

Appointed to 2021

Andrew is an internationally recognised social entrepreneur having spent the past 30 years seeding, nurturing and then mentoring over 15 successful social enterprises.  These have been in both Australia and Timor-Leste.

Andrew has been recognised for his work by becoming a Member (AM) in the General Division of the Order of Australia in 2013 and receiving an AM for significant service to the community and social justice through the provision of access to technology, and to Timor Leste.

Andrew has also been recognised internationally, including winning the prestigious Stockholm Challenge Award in 2001. In June of 2007 Andrew was recognised in the Bulletin Smart 100 Award for his work as a social justice campaigner. In 2009 he received the Australian Information Industry Association’s Community Award for the work Infoxchange had been doing to ensure we live in a digitally inclusive society.  In 2015 Andrew was listed in the Australian edition of Who’s Who.

Andrew has been working in Timor Leste for the past sixteen years supporting the establishment of a number of social enterprises.

WithOneSeed (Ho Musan Ida) is an internationally certified community forestry program replanting the forests of the mountain villages in Baguia, Timor-Leste.  This work is building capacity through education and training; developing the local village economy through annual farmer payments for tree management and maintenance and; creating regional partnerships with experts across the Asia Pacific region. WithOneBean is a program supporting coffee farmers in Ermera, Timor-Leste to improve coffee production and yields.

Fiona Lewis
Fiona Lewis


Fiona Lewis (Director of STF1944 ATF Natural Resources Conservation Trust)

Fiona Lewis is a Special Counsel in the Commercial and Regulatory group at MinterEllison, specialising in the energy, climate change and telecommunications sectors.  She has over 20 years Australian and international experience providing legal, commercial and regulatory compliance advice to boards and executive teams in the private, government and not for profit sectors.

Fiona is a sought after speaker on energy regulatory compliance and contractual matters, including for legal continuing professional development programs.  In addition to acting as a mentor to junior lawyers and graduates within MinterEllison, Fiona has also participated in the Victorian Women Lawyers mentoring program as a mentor, where she has provided ongoing instruction, support and guidance over several years.

Fiona is named in The Legal 500, an independent international rankings directory, for energy transactions and regulatory work in Australia.