Library Board of Queensland

The Library Board is the governing body of State Library of Queensland and draws its powers from the Libraries Act 1988.

The object of this Act is to contribute to the cultural, social and intellectual development of all Queenslanders. The Library Board is committed to improving access to information and knowledge for all Queenslanders. The Board periodically travels outside of Brisbane to keep informed about local issues and to strengthen relationships with local councils and the community.

The Library Board is governed by the  Library Board of Queensland Governance Framework and has adopted the Queensland Public Service Code of Conduct which all members uphold.

Professor Andrew Griffiths (Chairperson)

Andrew Griffiths is the Executive Dean, Faculty of Business, Economics and Law at The University of Queensland, and is the current Chair of the Library Board of Queensland. He is an internationally recognised scholar with research areas including the management of corporate change and innovation, and strategic issues relating to the pursuit of corporate sustainability and adaption to climate change.

Libraries are great enablers of access, can help bridge the digital divide and help create opportunities. Libraries enable people to connect and enrich our communities.

Emeritus Professor Tom Cochrane AM (Deputy Chairperson)

Tom Cochrane AM was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for his service to library and information management, and to education through digital learning initiatives. He is currently an Emeritus Professor, Faculty of Law, Queensland University of Technology, working in the research field of Intellectual Property and Innovation, and the Deputy Chair of the Library Board of Queensland. Tom is also a Fellow of the Australian Library and Information Association, Director at the Australian Digital Alliance and a former Queensland Museum Board Member.

I have a lifelong deep connection with libraries, not only as a childhood user, but someone whose working life began in one. As institutions they express the achievements of humankind, culturally, historically, scientifically and creatively. As human society evolves and progresses, flourishing and effective libraries are great markers of that progress.

Mrs Debbie Best

Debbie has extensive executive leadership experience in the Queensland State Government. This includes as Director-General, Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and Multicultural Affairs and other executive positions in water resource management (rural and urban), natural resource management, environment management, community engagement and education. Debbie has an extensive background in government boards and committees. She is currently Chair of Safe Food Production Queensland, Department of Resources Audit and Risk Committee, and the Electoral Commission of Queensland Audit and Risk Committee and a member of the Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy Audit Committee. Debbie has also held roles as the Chair of the Queensland Heritage Council, Director and Trustee of QSuper, Griffith University Council member, Murray-Darling Basin Commissioner and a member of the Queensland State Award Committee for the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award.

Libraries play an enormous role in our communities. As an educator, I saw first hand their influence in captivating young people of all ages to engage in learning. In communities across Queensland, libraries play a focal point for social connection, continued learning, especially in the digital age, and access for all to a wealth of resources.

Ms Cheryl Buchanan

Cheryl is a proud Guwamu woman from southwest Queensland. She is a renowned publisher, playwright, author, speaker, director, teacher, lecturer and traditional dancer. Spanning more than five decades, Cheryl has played an integral role in driving social change for her people—both at state and national levels. To this day, she remains a vocal political activist and passionate advocate for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Cheryl played a vital role in forming the Brisbane Tribal Council and was a founding member of the Aboriginal Legal, Medical Services and Childcare Centre in Brisbane, Black Community School, Black Resource Centre, the Murrie Cooee Publishing Company and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Women’s Legal and Advocacy Service in Brisbane. Cheryl was the first Aboriginal Commissioner to be appointed with the Queensland Corrective Services Commission. As a founding member of the Northern Basin Aboriginal Nations, Cheryl is currently the Deputy Chair and is also a Director of Queensland Murray-Darling Catchments Limited and National Aboriginal Water Interest Committee. Recently, Cheryl was a member of the Queensland Government’s Treaty Working Group and she continues to be actively pursuing the Path to Treaty process.

Professor Marek Kowalkiewicz

Marek Kowalkiewicz is the Founding Director of Centre for the Digital Economy at QUT and is an academic and industry leader with extensive experience conducting academically sound research in the digital economy field. He has led significant technology and innovation research projects and co-invented with industry and university partners to deliver ground-breaking technologies to market. In the past, Marek worked for SAP Australia, SAP Americas and SAP Asia, and Microsoft Research Asia.

I think of libraries as places of learning and self-enrichment. Places of silence and focus, but also places where we let our imaginations loose. Places to reconnect with ourselves, our past, to connect with others. To me, libraries are a catalyst, helping communities grow and reach their full potential.

Ms Julia Leu

Julia Leu is a local council veteran with over 25 years’ experience and was Mayor of the Douglas Shire Council from 2014 until March 2020, following six years as an independent Councillor with Cairns Regional Council. Julia is currently a director on the board of Ports North and a former director of the Australian Coastal Councils Association, Wet Tropics Management Authority, Regional Development Australia, Far North Queensland and Torres Strait Inc and Terrain NRM. Julia is a passionate advocate for regional communities and involved in a number of local community organisations. She also has over ten years of public sector experience, including senior roles in community services and Indigenous education. Julia holds a Master of Business Administration, a Bachelor of Arts, and Graduate Diplomas in Education and Communication.

These days libraries are vibrant social and community hubs, offering an increasing range of innovative community-focused educational and creative activities. The diversity in modern libraries continues to impress and amaze me, and I encourage the community to get involved in your local library and help make it even better.

Ms Nicola Padget

Nicola Padget is an experienced finance professional having held senior roles across the construction and mining sectors. Nicola is currently the Chief Financial Officer and Company Secretary of a prominent civil engineering and construction company and was previously a manager at KPMG within the Audit and Assurance division. Nicola holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting and Finance), is a Chartered Accountant and a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Thinking back on occasions visiting my local library, I recall a sense of safeness, comfort and calmness for valuable reflection and learning. For a child, a library can provide a pivotal early learning experience by introducing an appreciation for books and respectfulness for the belongings of others. Most importantly, libraries are the true preservers of history in a digital age where online content can often blur the truth from fiction.

Mr Dean Parkin

Dean is from the Quandamooka peoples of Minjerribah (North Stradbroke Island) in Queensland. Having been closely involved in the process that resulted in the historic Uluru Statement From The Heart, Dean continues to advocate for constitutional and structural reform as Director of From the Heart. Formerly an investment analyst at alternative asset investment firm Tanarra Capital, he has extensive experience in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander affairs. He has consulted across the public, corporate, not-for-profit and political sectors at national, regional, and local levels. He has advised a range of clients on strategy, engagement and co-design, and has commercial experience both in Australia and the UK. Dean has a Bachelor of Arts (Politics and Journalism) from the University of Queensland and a Graduate Certificate in Education from the University of Melbourne. He is a Senior Fellow of the Atlantic Fellowship for Social Equity and is an ex-officio member of the Business Council of Australia’s Indigenous Engagement Taskforce.

Dr Jodie Siganto

Jodie Siganto is a privacy and cyber security lawyer and consultant. Over her career, she has held in-house counsel roles for Tandem Computers, Unisys Asia and Dell. She co-founded data security firm, Bridge Point Communications, and more recently Privacy108 Consulting and has held leadership roles with industry groups including AISA. Jodie is an experienced company director, holding positions with government owned corporations and private businesses. 

Stories help us understand ourselves, our neighbours, our history and the place we live in now, they bring us knowledge, and pleasure and help bind us together. As the collectors, protectors and sharers of our stories, libraries shine a light on our past, and our shared experiences, while at the same time helping us imagine and shape our future.

In attendance

Ms Vicki McDonald AM FALIA

State Librarian and Chief Executive Officer

The State Librarian and Chief Executive Officer is responsible for the proper and sound management of State Library of Queensland, under the authority of the Library Board of Queensland. The State Librarian and Chief Executive Officer provides strategic advice and direction to the Library Board; plans and develops new initiatives, services and programs; manages the resources of the State Library; initiates strategic partnerships and leads the State Library of Queensland.

Under the Libraries Act 1988, the State Librarian must attend all meetings of the Board unless excused or precluded by the Board.

Library Board committee

The Library Board has appointed an Audit and Risk Management Committee to advise and inform the Library Board on issues that arise within the scope of the committee.

Library Board advisory groups

The Library Board appoints a number of advisory groups which, while not undertaking the functions of the Board, provide strategic advice and act as a consultative arm. These groups are currently: