Founder & Trustees

Neil Balnaves AO
Neil Balnaves AO 

Neil has worked in the media industry for over 45 years previously holding the position of Executive Chairman of the Southern Star Group which he founded. Neil was the Chairman of Ardent Leisure Group, one of Australia's most successful owners and operators of premium leisure assets, from 2003 until November 2016. He is the Chancellor of Charles Darwin University, a Trustee Member of Bond University and in 2009 received an Honorary Doctorate of the University. Neil is a Director of the Sydney Orthopaedic Research Institute, a member of the Advisory Council and Dean’s Circle of the University of New South Wales (Faculty of Medicine) and in 2010 received an Honorary Doctorate of the University.

Neil is a Board Member of the Art Gallery of South Australia, a Director of Technicolor Australia Limited, serves on numerous advisory and community organisations and is a Foundation Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Neil's former directorships include Hanna-Barbera Australia, Reed Consolidated Industries, Hamlyn Group, Taft Hardie and Southern Cross Broadcasting.

In 2006 Neil established The Balnaves Foundation, a philanthropic fund that disperses more than $2.5 million annually in supporting eligible organisations that aim to create a better Australia through education, medicine, and the arts with a focus on young people, the disadvantaged and Indigenous communities. 

In 2010 Neil was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia for his services to business and philanthropy.

To find out more about the Founder Neil Balnaves AO, please read his extended Biography.


Diane Balnaves

Diane, completed her secondary education at Seymour College in Adelaide followed by a period as a social worker. Diane then became a book seller in 1970 and since 1971 has been married to Neil Balnaves, the Founder of The Balnaves Foundation. Diane continues to do volunteer work in the Mosman community.

Alexandra Balnaves BA Dip Ed - Australian History

Alexandra is the eldest daughter of Neil and Diane Balnaves. She is an educator; training as a secondary school History Teacher. She lives in Gumbaynggirr country on the NSW Mid-North Coast. She currently works in Research and Development for an academic enrichment program for indigenous students. She has worked in a variety of roles, all linked to education: as a history teacher; as an educator and advocator with people with disability; and, as a freelance journalist, has produced one oral history short film and a number of radio documentaries.

Hamish Balnaves BEcSocSc DipEd

Hamish, is the son of Neil and Diane, having graduated from Sydney University with a degree in Economics (Social Science). He then worked as a teacher for ten years in Sydney and overseas. He completed a Diploma in Education at UNSW in 2006. In early 2009 he decided to resign from his teaching position and began work as General Manager of The Balnaves Foundation.

Victoria Balnaves BA Hist & Perf, Dip FB

Victoria, is the youngest daughter of Neil and Diane Balnaves. Victoria has worked in the PR & Events industry for over 8 years across various fields and now has her own freelance consultancy which specialises in luxury brands, fashion, health and charity PR & Events. Victoria has a Bachelor of Arts (Sydney University), a Diploma in Fashion Business (FBI Fashion College), and a Certificate in Image Consulting (Istituto Marangoni - Milan).

Dr. Brad McIntosh BSc (ExSci), MPT (Physio), DPT (Physio), CSCS

Brad, completed his Bachelor of Science at Brigham Young University and Master of Physical Therapy at the University of Utah, whilst playing and coaching tennis. Brad subsequently completed his Doctor of Physical Therapy (University of Saint Augustine, USA) and is a Member of the Australian Physiotherapy Association and Sports Medicine Australia. Since returning to Australia in 2002, Brad has developed his practice and now runs one of the largest private physiotherapy clinics in Sydney, Sydney Sports & Orthopaedic Physiotherapy.

Keith Drewery

Keith Drewery has worked for more than 30 years with wealth owners in professional services practices to help those families achieve financial goals and preserve wealth. He consults to wealthy families on issues of succession, legacy and philanthropy and also works closely with KPMG's private enterprise division in Sydney in the development of their services to families and family offices. Originally working inside accounting firms as a tax specialist, Mr Drewery left the profession to work within funds management and between 2006 and 2011 he established and ran Myer Family Company's Sydney office, Australia's largest independent multi-family office. Through the last 15 years Mr Drewery has worked closely with founders and trustees of some of Australia's most significant foundations and private ancillary funds. He consults widely to the not-for-profit sector. 

Dr. Philip Newell Arber MB BS (Syd)

Philip, has been a General Practitioner in Mosman for over 40 years. He is also a Director of the Mosman Rowers Club.

Caillean Honor

Caillean is an observer on the Board of Trustees. She is the granddaughter of Neil and Diane and the daughter of Alexandra. Caillean is currently completing the HSC and is passionate about social justice and the environment.

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