WE ARE Victoria’s peak industry association representing Victoria’s 18 water corporations and a number of other water sector organisations.

WE UNDERSTAND that collaboration lies at the heart of what we do.

WE KNOW that our members are better together, united to influence policy and regulation, plan for future challenges, generate shared value, promote best practice and build an innovative and robust water industry.

WE ARE agile and responsive to the needs of our members and the ever-changing environment in which they operate.

WE BRING people and organisations together to identify and deliver targeted projects that result in greater efficiencies and innovation.

WE VALUE strong leadership and strengthen sector governance by delivering development and networking opportunities for the director and executive cohort.

WE PROVIDE an effective vehicle for Victorian water corporations to benefit from shared learnings, investments, experimentation and risk-sharing, achieving real dollar industry efficiencies, and developing a common voice with stakeholders on key sector issues.

VicWater is here to serve the 18 water corporations across Victoria.

These individual water corporations serve customers within the metropolitan, regional and rural areas of the state of Victoria.


The VicWater Board of Directors provides a foundation to support the Victorian water industry. With six elected individuals from the VicWater membership, our directors represent the metropolitan, regional and rural sectors of the water industry ensuring a balanced perspective of issues and initiatives.


David Middleton

(appointed 23/05/2022)

David became the inaugural Chair of the Greater Western Water Board on 1 July 2021.

Prior appointments include City West Water Board Chair from October 2015 to June 2021 and Director at Yarra Valley Water from October 2011 to September 2015.  David has over 30 years of industry operational and executive experience.

David holds bachelors and masters degrees in engineering, an MBA from Deakin University and is a Graduate Member of the AICD.


Deputy Chair
Therese Tierney

(appointed 23/05/2022)

Therese is an experienced CEO, Board Director and Chair. She has held CEO and senior management roles in metro Melbourne and regional Victoria, and in both the private and public health sectors and local government as both a Councillor and General Manager.

Therese is currently the Chair of East Gippsland Water, Chair of the Gippsland Primary Health Network and Maryvale Private Hospital and a Director at Omeo District Health. In 2021 she was appointed as Chair of the Gippsland Regional Partnership and a member of the Regional Development Advisory Committee.

Therese also works as a consultant, providing strategic and innovative solutions to challenges with business, change management, health/business planning and design, people and systems thinking. This also includes supporting Boards to improve their governance and create a positive and accountable culture.

Andrew Jeffers

(appointed 14/11/2019)

Andrew was appointed as Wannon Water’s Managing Director in July 2015. Prior to this Andrew worked for 16 years with Wannon Water and 23 years within the Victorian water industry in various engineering and corporate roles, which has resulted in a deep understanding of the water industry and the business of a water corporation.

Andrew understands water corporations exist for their customers and understands the importance and community value of providing high quality water, sewerage and trade waste services. He has a special interest in ensuring VicWater is effective in assisting its water corporation members create value for their customers and support the communities in which they operate as well as strategically positioning the water sector for future success.

Andrew is a member of the Victorian Intelligent Water Network Executive Committee, a Director of the Great South Coast Group and a Director of Beyond the Bell.


Charmaine Quick

(appointed 23/05/2022)

Charmaine Quick joined Goulburn-Murray Water (GMW) with more than two decades of experience in the water industry and a strong history in leading change.

Prior to her appointment at GMW, Charmaine was the Executive General Manager, Service Delivery at Melbourne Water. Charmaine is known for her ability to influence and drive change at an organisation level, nationally and internationally for asset management, relationship contract management and customer service.

Charmaine’s qualifications include Bachelor of Civil Engineering, Melbourne University, and Master Environmental Science, Monash University. Charmaine is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD).


Nicola Hepenstall

(appointed 23/05/2022)

Nicola was appointed to the South Gippsland Water board on 1 October 2019.

Nicola is a highly skilled strategist with extensive experience in C-suite leadership roles, holding Executive Director and Non-executive Director positions spanning marketing services, research, education and member organisations. With over 25 years experience in evidence-based consulting, she has worked with State and Federal Government departments and many of Australia’s largest companies helping them navigate the complexity of the communications environment and develop strategies to enhance business and social outcomes.

Nicola is currently a Director of The Front Project and has previously held directorships of Haileybury CollegeClemenger Group Limited and Chair of the Association of Market & Social Research Organisations.

Nicola holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours in Psychology) and is a Graduate of the AICD. Nicola was the Australian Marketing Institute’s Certified Practising Marketer of the Year 2018.


Victor Perton

(appointed 23/05/2022)

Victor became a Director of Yarra Valley Water on 1 October 2015.

Victor is the founder of the Australian Leadership Project and the author of ‘The Case for Optimism: The Optimists Voices.’

Victor’s experience in governance includes service on boards including Transport Accident Commission, the Global Integrity Summit, the Australian Centre for Financial Studies and patron of the Digital Leadership Institute.

Victor has chaired public sector inquiries and committees on technology, justice, equal opportunity, regulatory efficiency, subordinate legislation and several other topics. Victor’s current work includes advice on optimistic leadership, Australian leadership, integrity and strategy.

Victor brings 18 years’ experience as a Parliamentarian, practice as a barrister, mediator, arbitrator, businessman, private sector board service and mentor. He is a former Commissioner to the Americas promoting foreign direct investment in Victoria, supporting Victorian exporters, building global supply chains and expatriate and alumni networks.

Helen Symes

Helen Symes

(appointed 1/1/2024)

Helen was appointed to the Coliban Water board on 1st October, 2017.

She is also the chair of the Audit, Risk and Finance Committee.

Helen is a Certified Practising Accountant and has over 28 years of diverse finance experience across a wide range of industries from healthcare, emergency services, corporate agriculture, media and public practice. She has held senior finance roles in both private and government organisations, including Ambulance Service VictoriaWarakirri Pty Ltd and Wimmera Health Care Group. She is also a partner in a dryland farming enterprise.

Helen is also a Director of CVGT Australia, chairing the Finance Committee.

Helen’s qualifications are a Bachelor of Business (Accounting), Graduate of the AICD, Diploma of Financial Planning, and Certificate IV in Agriculture.

Ishara Saldin

Ishara Saldin

(appointed 1/1/2024)

Ishara Saldin was appointed to the Board of Westernport Water Corporation on 1 October 2021 and is a member of the Westernport Water Audit and Risk Committee and the Safety, Sustainability and Innovation Committee.

Ishara is an Internal Auditor at Australia and New Zealand (ANZ) Banking Group Limited with a global coverage and assignments spanning across Australia, New Zealand, Asia Pacific and Europe & America.

Ishara previously served for three years as Chief Risk Officer of ANZ Guam Inc. based in Guam, until April 2019, and was the Chair of ANZ Guam Inc.’s Operational Risk and Compliance Committee, Chair of the Credit and Market Risk Committee, an ex-officio member of the Board and the Audit and Risk Committee, and a member of the Asset-Liability Committee.

Ishara is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors with over 20 years’ experience in banking, her expertise is in complex transaction delivery, and audit and risk management.


VicWater has a small team of hard working staff that represent the Victorian water industry peak body association.
Chief Executive Officer
Jo Lim

Jo joined VicWater in March 2019 and was appointed as CEO in July 2022.

Jo started her career in the federal public service, before holding senior executive roles in the IT sector and management consultancy.

Jo has a Bachelor of Laws (Hons) and a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) from the University of Melbourne, and a Diploma of Business and Diploma of Management from Swinburne University.

Jo is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD), and a member of the Australian Water Association.

Chief Operating Officer
Tara Daniel

Tara joined VicWater on Secondment in March 2022. Tara has worked in the water sector since 2006, holding various technical and strategic roles in both the UK and Victoria, most recently as the Manger Business Intelligence at Goulburn Valley Water.

Tara holds a Bachelor of Chemical Engineering (hons) from UNSW and a Master of Chemical Engineering (by Research) from RMIT.

Tara is currently studying a Graduate Diploma of Economics from the University of New England.

Stuart Craven
Policy and Regulation Manager
Stuart Craven

Stuart Craven joined VicWater in October 2022 as the Policy and Regulation Manager.

Stuart was previously employed by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (and its predecessors) for 23 years. His last 18 years were in the department’s water group where he was involved in a number of major water projects and state-wide programs.

Stuart’s experience within the Victorian water sector and his extensive networks will be an asset for VicWater.

Stuart holds a Bachelor of Science and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

IWN Program Director
Jason Cotton

Jason joined Intelligent Water Networks (IWN) in 2023 from Greater Western Water (GWW) where he was the Manager of Innovation and Continuous Improvement.

Jason played a key role in the integration of GWW by leading the Operations Stream Integration.

Jason has an extensive innovation career in the Utilities Sector, small/medium enterprise and the education sector.

He holds a Bachelor of Science (Hons) degree from Flinders University and a Certificate of Management from Mt Eliza Business School. Jason also studied under Gary Hamel at the Innovation Academy in the US.

IWN Deputy Program Director
Elisa Bourke

Elisa joined IWN in August 2021, facilitating the delivery of programs and knowledge sharing opportunities.

She has spent the last 15 years in the water sector, where she was responsible for HSEQ Integrated Management Systems, and various key business improvement initiatives.

Prior to this, she worked in FMCG food and beverage industries focusing on quality and operational improvements.

Elisa is passionate about inclusion, accessibility and simplifying work practices to be inclusive and easy to follow.

Engagement Manager
Lauren Vines

(Part time)

Lauren joined VicWater in November 2015 and is responsible for managing the development and delivery of VicWater’s communications and events strategies, plans and activities, including maintaining effective ongoing engagement with members, stakeholders and sponsors.

Prior to working at VicWater, Lauren managed high level corporate events and weddings for Peter Rowland Catering at NGV, (National Gallery Victoria) and prior to that, managed marketing alliances and events at VACC, (Victorian Automobile Chamber of Commerce).

Lauren’s formal qualifications include Public Relations, Marketing and Event Management.

Linna Fang
Administrative Assistant
Linna Fang

(Part time)

Linna joined VicWater as Administrative Assistant in 2021 and assists with the administrative duties including job posts and room bookings at the VicWater office.

VicWater proudly acknowledge the Traditional Owners and true Custodians of the land and waters where we live and work. We pay our upmost respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.
At VicWater we are also proud to celebrate, value and include people of all backgrounds, genders, sexualities, cultures and abilities.
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