Lake Macquarie Lead Community Reference Group

The Lake Macquarie Lead Community Reference Group was established by the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) to enable the community to engage directly with government and experts on issues related to potential lead and lead slag contamination in the suburbs of Boolaroo, Argenton and Speers Point.

The group is working in partnership with the Lead Expert Working Group, which is made up of people with expertise in the areas of lead contamination and environmental health.

The Lake Macquarie Lead Community Reference Group comprises nine members. Expressions of interest for membership were sought from the community and industry and members were selected to represent a broad range of community interests.

The group's functions include:

  • providing a conduit to inform the community on all matters relating to this issue
  • providing a voice for the community to raise concerns and issues
  • facilitating ongoing communication between industries and the local community.

The group is supported by:

  • a representative of the company responsible for the former Pasminco lead smelter site
  • an officer or employee of Lake Macquarie City Council
  • an officer or employee of NSW Health
  • an officer or employee of the EPA.

Terms of reference

Read the Terms of Reference (PDF 224KB) that EPA has prepared to support and guide the Lake Macquarie Lead Community Reference Group.

Chair – Greg Piper

Greg Piper
Greg Piper is the Independent State Member for Lake Macquarie and served as Mayor of the city from 2004 to 2012. He was elected to the council in 1991 and has had a long involvement with lead contamination issues in northern Lake Macquarie, representing residents of the affected areas at both local and state government level.


Community representative –Tony Cade

Tony CadeIn 2013, Tony became the Chief Executive Officer of HunterNet Co-operative Limited, a Hunter-based network of Engineering and Manufacturing. Tony previously held the position of Group General Manager, Veolia Environment and senior executive positions within WSN, the Hunter Waste Planning and Management Board, Newcastle City Council and BHP Steel.

Tony possesses strong leadership skills, a track record in developing and implementing business and strategic plans, has extensive experience in building business relationships, and is well connected with all three tiers of government. Tony has an extensive network of alliances and relationships with many charitable and community organisations.

Tony possesses tertiary qualifications in metallurgy and economics and has completed executive education programs at Harvard Business School (Boston), Wharton Business School (Pennsylvania), and IMD (Switzerland).

School representative – Nicole Gerrard

Nicole GerardNicole Gerrard has worked as an environmental planner for over four years and previous to this as an ecologist for over ten years.  She has prepared hundreds of reports such as flora and fauna reports, bushfire threat assessments, statement of environmental effects, environmental impact statements and 7-part tests.  Nicole's experience includes working for ERM, a large multi-national environmental consulting company, and managing her own business for almost eight years.

Nicole is currently the President of the Boolaroo Public School P&C.

Community representative – Emma Hale

Emma HaleEmma lives in Speers Point with her husband and daughter. She has worked for a number of public sector agencies in analytical and research roles after initially training to be a dietitian. At the moment Emma works full-time in a compliance-based position and volunteers with Primary Ethics and a local out-of-school-hours-care service.

Business representative – Lloyd Hill

Lloyd HillLloyd has worked in the mining sector for over 34 years. He has performed senior management and technical roles for a number of blue-chip mining companies at operations throughout Australia and around the world. Lloyd’s experience spans the full cycle of assets from resource exploration and evaluation to conceptual design, pre-feasibility, construction, operation, and management. Lloyd’s reputation has enabled him to develop key relationships with major manufacturing partners in China, including China Shipping and China Coal Technology & Energy Group, partnering with them across Australasia and Canada, through his role as General Manager for Equipment Resource Group and Housing Concepts.

Community representative – Karen McCraw

Karen McCrawKaren moved to Boolaroo with her husband and children just over three years ago. She loves the beauty and history of the area and wants to help the environment repair what past industry has impacted. Her passions are training and development, community engagement and gardening and she loves afresh coffee.  Her professional background includes all levels of hospitality, including senior management and her current role is a Human Resources Coordinator.

Lake Macquarie City Council representative – Deputy Mayor Luke Cubis

Luke CubisLuke is the Duputy Mayor of Lake Macquarie City Council. He lives at Speers Point and is actively involved in the community. He is a former primary school teacher who is now the CEO of a local charity.

Lake Macquarie City Council representative – Councillor Wendy Harrison

Wendy HarrisonWendy is a former Deputy Mayor of Lake Macquarie City Council and has been a councillor since 2004. Before retiring from full time work, she was a manager for Hunter TAFE. Wendy has lived at Speers Point for more than 45 years where she has been actively involved with the community. 

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