Executive Management Team
Our Executive Management Team brings proven expertise and experience across industries to lead our growing multi-national business.
Under its direction, our teams continue to drive our company forward with determination and a commitment to excellence.
Group Executive Mining and Mineral Processing
Michael Wright was appointed Group Executive Mining and Mineral Processing in December 2016. He is responsible for leading CIMIC’s operating companies, Thiess, as Managing Director, and Sedgman. Since joining the CIMIC Group in 1998, Michael has held a number of executive roles, including leading Thiess’ Australian Mining operations, managing the Thiess Services business, running Leighton Asia’s China and Mongolia business, and various senior leadership roles across Thiess.
Michael’s extensive experience spans more than 25 years in mining, engineering, tunnelling, environment, waste management, telecommunications and utilities. These, in combination with his significant project management experience and leadership capability, provide a strong platform to lead CIMIC’s mining and mineral processing operations.
As a long-standing advocate for the mining industry, Michael is passionate about industry development, sustainability, diversity and inclusion. He is a board member of the Minerals Council of Australia, Queensland Resources Council and the Sustainable Minerals Institute, which is affiliated with the University of Queensland. In 2015, Michael became a member of the Queensland Male Champions of Change, and is committed to diversity and inclusion. He holds a Bachelor of Civil Engineering and Master of Engineering Science.
Chief Financial Officer
Craig has more than 22 years’ experience in chartered accounting and contracting. He is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and holds a Bachelor of Business from the Queensland University of Technology. Over the past 15 years, he has held senior positions including the role of Finance Director, APAC and Africa for a global EPCM provider. During his time at Thiess, he has held senior finance, commercial and operational positions as well as the role of General Manager Finance and Commercial for Thiess’ Australian Mining operations and Executive General Manager Assets. In August 2016, Craig was appointed Thiess' Chief Financial Officer. Craig is renowned for his strong leadership and ability to link both commercial and operational drivers to achieve improved business outcomes.
Trish Russell was appointed General Counsel at Thiess in October 2014 after acting in the position since August. Reporting directly to the Managing Director, Trish is responsible for advising in the areas of legal and commercial risk management, contract negotiation, claims prevention and management, commercial recovery dispute resolution, ethics, governance and regulatory compliance. Trish was admitted as a solicitor in May 1999 and has worked as a Judge’s Associate in the Federal Court of Australia, as well as for premier law firms including Mallesons in Brisbane, and Pinsent Masons in Dublin and London. Before her appointment as General Counsel, Trish was Associate General Counsel at Thiess with responsibility for statutory and regulatory compliance, risk management, legal training and the development and implementation of CIMIC's standards and policies. Trish has an honours degree in law from the Queensland University of Technology, graduating in 1996.
Executive General Manager Technical Services
Graduating with honours in Civil Engineering, Bob has more than 30 years’ contracting experience. With a strong background in project management, his expertise spans roads, bridges, underground works, dams, mine infrastructure and coal handling plants in Australia and overseas including Fiji, Singapore, Indonesia and Vietnam. Since joining Thiess in 1995, Bob has played an integral role in the growth of the company’s mining business. His contribution to Thiess’ success includes all aspects of open-cut coal mining and processing operations. As Executive General Manager Technical Services, Bob continues to work closely with personnel across our mining operations to drive innovation and optimise project delivery.
Executive General Manager Australia and Pacific (Acting)
Abdul was appointed Executive General Manager, Australia and Pacific (Acting) in April 2017. Since joining Thiess 16 years ago, Abdul has held a number of leadership positions, recently returning from a secondment in the Middle East as acting MD/CEO with HLG Contracting. Previously, Abdul was the Executive General Manager Pre-Contracts and Risk, having served as Thiess’ Commercial and Risk Manager for the Australian Mining business since 2011, and as Commercial Manager for Thiess Services in the Middle East. His national and international experience gives him a strong understanding of the diverse demands of establishing and managing contracts and associated corporate governance in a variety of country contexts. With an international background in law and project management for major infrastructure projects, and a proven ability to ensure strong and accountable governance for projects and organisations, Abdul’s diverse capability is an asset to Thiess’ growing business. He holds a Bachelor and Master of Science (Civil Engineering) and post-graduate qualifications in Law from Australia and the United States of America.
Executive General Manager Asia & Africa
Paul was appointed as Executive General Manager, Asia in October 2016 and is responsible for leading and developing Thiess’ expanding presence in this region. With more than 20 years’ mining experience, Paul has held executive roles in Australia and Indonesia across coal and hard-rock mining projects of all sizes, including in organisations such as Consolidated Minerals Australia (Consmin), BHP Billiton and HWE Mining. His breadth of experience in various commodity, geography and contract types, including contracting and client roles, provides an invaluable ability to direct Thiess’ next season of growth in Asia. Well known for establishing cohesive and highly capable teams, Paul leads with purpose and hands-on engagement and drives a strong safety culture, complemented by his technical skills and strategic understanding of the mining sector. As a graduate with honours in civil engineering, Paul is also a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and a fellow of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy.
Executive General Manager Americas & Strategic Growth
Mark was appointed Executive General Manager, Africa and Americas in September 2014 and is responsible for leading the team in developing and expanding into the growth regions of Africa and the Americas, with operations currently in Botswana and Chile, and shortlisted tender status in North America. During his career, Mark has held a number of key leadership roles for Henry Walker Eltin (HWE Mining) and Leighton Contractors Mining Division, including the position of General Manager, Metals and General Manager, Strategy and Business Performance. During Mark’s time with HWE Mining and Leighton Contractors he successfully led a number of major iron ore expansions in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. Mark’s depth of expertise in the sector spans underground, open cut and process engineering operations. Having worked in site-based leadership roles on major mines and business development roles in conjunction with major mine owners Mark has a strong understanding of the success factors that drive improved performance and production in the field as well as the strategic decisions that drive market success corporately. Mark holds a Bachelor of Civil Engineering (Honours) and an Executive MBA.
General Manager Health, Safety & Security
David was appointed as Thiess’ General Manager, Health, Safety and Security in 2011. He has been instrumental in shifting Thiess’ strategic focus from lag to lead indicators, resulting in year-on-year improvements in safety performance. Prior to joining Thiess, he held executive roles in organisations such as Downer Engineering and Transfield Services. Across more than 15 years, David has been a health and safety leader for large international organisations in mining, minerals processing, oil and gas, manufacturing, services, transport and facilities management operations. He is skilled at deploying best practice programs in diverse cultural contexts, from Australia and North America to Asia and India to the Middle East. He holds a Bachelor of Applied Science (Occupational Health and Environment) and a Graduate Certificate in International Business and is a Vincent Fairfax Fellow.
General Manager People & Capability
Michele was appointed General Manager People & Capability in March 2017. With experience spanning more than 20 years, Michele has held a number of global leadership positions, including Group People Director/Director Performance Leadership at WorleyParsons, and Head of Human Resources at Grocon. Michele has lead globally diverse teams, implementing HR strategies, leadership development and large scale business transformation and change programs. As an experienced people and business improvement professional, Michele is passionate about achieving best practice performance solutions while driving an internal customer service philosophy. Michele’s leadership style is flexible, engaging and interpersonal, dedicated to excellence through people.