Anita Mitchell

Anita Mitchell has made a huge impact on sustainable development, most recently with Lendlease. Now, she’s been picked to lead the NSW government’s new committee to ensure its public assets have a bit of soul. 

First announced in July, Placemaking NSW will sit within the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment, as an independent advisory committee. It’s tasked with managing and transforming “some of NSW’s most treasured places” including The Rocks, Darling Harbour and Sydney Olympic Park.

According to the inside story the government scoured the globe for a suitable chief executive but landed on Mitchell for her capacity to bring a wealth of local urban renewal experience to the placemaking role.

Her legacy includes overseeing the Barangaroo project as sustainability manager, which aimed for carbon neutrality and got there in 2019: Australia’s first carbon neutral precinct.

The ambitious precinct features a collection of centralised infrastructure such as district water cooling, embedded electricity networks, recycled water treatment plants and on-site renewable energy generation.

Each building has annual targets to bring emissions down, with other nice touches including retailers and suppliers required to avoid packaging and to serve healthy food, and Barangaroo Reserve formed with 100 per cent native plants.

Ms Mitchell also spent some time overseas as the company’s Europe head of sustainability, before returning to Australia as risk appetite framework – corporate assurance program lead.

Before Lendlease, she was head of energy and sustainability at JLL, where she pushed the sustainability agenda hard and managed to double the sustainability team.

Read more about Anita Mitchell in an interview here.