Directors who should quit - our top 10 in 2010


January 20, 2017

Here is a list of long serving directors on public company boards who should retire to make way for younger directors, preferably women, who don't have so many blots on the copy book.


Lindsay Cattermole: has served on the Foster's board since 1999 and supported most of the decisions which led to an estimated $5 billion in losses on wine. Has now moved across to the Treasury Wine Estates board.

David Crawford: after almost 18 years on the BHP-Billiton board it is time for the former KPMG chairman to retire.

Barry Cusack: still hanging around the Toll board despite all the disasters of Oxiana and OZ Minerals. Toll has no female directors, so this 68-year should shuffle off promptly to create a vacancy.

Trevor Gerber: dreadful record at Valad Property Group, lead independent director of Macquarie Airports who championed the outrageous $345 million divorce payment to Macquarie and also chaired one of the dud Babcock vehicles. Should be off all public company boards yet Risk Metrics supported his re-election at the 2010 MAPGroup AGM.

Brian Jamieson: having just taken the chair at Sigma Pharmaceutical he is now over-committed. Given the fiasco of OZ Minerals, that would be the appropriate position to quit. Also re-elected for another 3 year term at Tatts Group AGM in 2010.

Peter Ritchie: has served for far too long on the Seven board and didn't exactly himself in glory during the $2 billion Westrac related party deal. Ritchie predicted Seven shares would surpass the record high of $14.68 in 2008. Today they are about half that, suggesting it paid too much to fix Kerry Stokes' $1 billion private debt problem.

David Ryan:
still yet to be held to account as the long-time audit committee chair of ABC Learning, he finally resigned as Transurban chairman in August 2010 and should immediately resign as a Lend Lease director.

Murray Wells: has served for far too long on the Seven board and didn't exactly cover himself in glory during the $2 billion Westrac related party deal in 2010.

Directors who stayed too long in the past

Ken Cowley: News Corp director since 1979 who turns 76 this year and should stand aside so the Sun King can appoint a second female to the board, joining the young opera singer Natalie Bancroft.

Donald Morley: Hugh Morgan's long-time finance director at WMC is approaching 70 and did a poor job as the over-paid chairman of post box company Alumina for almost a decade, including treating retail shareholders appalling in capital raisings during the GFC. Finally retired in late 2011 .

John Stocker: was Donald McGauchie's surviving chief backer at Telstra and the chair of Sigma Pharmaceutical when it imploded. Also struggled along at Nufarm. Joined Telstra in 1996 and stayed for 15 years.