Rod Leaver at the Green Cities conference 2009

23 April 209 – Rod Leaver was appointed to the board Green Building Council of Australia in Februrary this year, replacing Maria Atkinson.

Leaver, pictured right, looking pensive as part of an on-stage panel at the March Green Cities conference, is chief executive officer of Lend Lease Asia Pacific, a job to which he was appointed after becoming Global CEO of Investment Management in November 2007.

Leaver has been in the thick of the main game in property for years, so his appointment to one of the greenest jobs in property is significant.

His 30 year career so far includes executive chairman of the Ronin Property Group; co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of James Fielding Group and co-founder and Executive Director of Paladin Australia Limited.

But it his background in the wider issues of property that will underpin his commitment in the GBC, Leaver says.

“As the planet’s largest contributor of green house gas emissions the real estate industry has a great responsibility to both the environment and the community to set things right,” he told TFE.

“Having previously served for many years on the Heritage Council, I deeply understand the necessity to create positive long lasting social legacies and as such I very much look forward to assisting the Green Building Council of Australia in its continued efforts to do so.”

Meanwhile, Maria Atkinson, a founding chief executive of the GBCA, and now Lend Lease global sustainability manager is spending much of her time working, well…globally. In the last few weeks, Atkinson, one of the more forthright contributors to the green bulding agenda, has been in the US, spruiking the message that buildings are the least cost carbon abatement opportunity and the “Efficient Building Scheme” to the UN and Washington.

Guess who’s got their first sustainability manager?

Westfield, the company that in 2007 told this reporter after an annual general meeting that in terms of becoming sustainable, “We do what the law requires us to do,” has hired Corin Millais, formerly of Greenpeace.

Stephen Johnston

Planners get a new CEO

The Planning Institute of Australia has a new chief executive officer, Stephen Johnston, succeeding Di Jay.  Johnston was CEO with Isis Shire Council in Queensland and has also worked with Bundaberg Regional Council, Crookwell Shire Council and Byron Shire Council.