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Our Board of Directors have wide experience in evaluating funding applications for community projects.

On its 100th anniversary in 2003, Newcastle Permanent created the Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation as a gift to the community. Newcastle Permanent Community Foundation Company Ltd is the trustee of the Charitable Foundation and is represented by a Board of Directors, comprising representatives of the Newcastle Permanent Board and appointed Community Directors. The Charitable Foundation Board elects its own Chair. 

The Charitable Foundation is classified as a Private Ancillary Fund (PAF) and is regulated by the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC). The Charitable Foundation provides more than $1.5 million annually in grants to eligible not-for-profit community organisations across the Hunter, Central Coast, Central West, Mid North Coast, New England, and Northern Rivers regions of NSW. 

The Board meets at least four times each year and has responsibility to set and monitor the Charitable Foundation’s strategic direction, guide its financial, risk and investment decisions, ensure compliance with the Charitable Foundation’s Trust Deed, guidelines and taxation and other legislation, and to approve funding of charitable grants. 

Newcastle Permanent has endowed the Foundation with $30 million to administer within the guidelines of the Charitable Foundation’s own constitution, charter, and strategic plan. The Charitable Foundation invests the $30 million endowment to generate an income stream that is used to support worthy and important community projects and initiatives into the future. Operational support is provided by Newcastle Permanent under a defined administrative services agreement.

Avenue team member Julie Clifton demonstrating AUSLAN
The opening of Avenue Newcastle was supported by a $160,000 grant from Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation.

Our Directors

Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation is governed by an independent Board of Directors, comprising both Newcastle Permanent Directors and Community Directors.

Dip Bus Studies (Acc), MBA, FCA (Aust), GAICDNon

Chair since 2023, Board member since 2022

Ross has been a Director of Newcastle Greater Mutual Group Limited (formerly known as Newcastle Permanent Building Society Limited). His appointments at CBA included Group Chief Credit Officer and Head of Credit Management. He is a former Chair of Targus Australia Pty Ltd, a former Director of Mirabela Nickel Limited and Commonwealth Managed Investments Limited, which was the Responsible Entity for two ASX listed Property Trusts. He holds a Diploma of Business Studies (Accounting) and Masters of Business Administration. Ross is also a Fellow of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand and a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors

BA Communications

Board member since 2021

Natasha is a prominent media professional with nearly 30 years’ experience as a television news presenter, producer and journalist. She is currently the NBN News weeknight news presenter, a patron of Firstchance Early Intervention Service, a Committee member of Hunter Children’s Research Foundation and a member of the Fundraising Committee for Autism Spectrum Australia. Natasha has also been involved in fundraising for ASPECT Hunter School and other local charities.

BA Education, Dip Counselling

Board member since 2021

Ashley has significant charity sector experience with a strong focus on community education, with a Bachelors degree in education and diploma in counselling. He has a strong focus and advocacy for the well-being of indigenous people and their communities.

He is currently the Managing Director of NSW Aboriginal Safe Gambling Services and a Board Member of Yarnteen. He runs his own Driver Licensing Access Services entity, which provides programs to disadvantaged people and has previously run a personal consultancy service involving indigenous community consultation, leadership, education, research and advice.

He has also been involved in organisations such as Life Without Barriers, Life Activities, LeapFrog Ability and Yamuloong Association Inc. Ashley has held former roles as a teacher, university researcher and as a Newcastle Knights rugby league player. Formerly on boards and committees, including to the federal Ministerial Expert Advisory Group on Gambling as well as the Australian Gambling Research Centre and suicide prevention.

BA Communications, MBA, GAICD

Board member since 2019

Jane is a non-executive director on Boards including University of Newcastle Students Association, Rural and Remote Medical Services Ltd and Rigpa Fellowship. She worked for 25 years in the NSW public health system as a senior executive. Jane is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, holds a Master of Business Administration and Bachelor of Arts (Communication). She has extensive experience in organisational culture, innovation and research, customer relationship management and building partnerships to deliver positive social impact.


Board member since 2023

Paul is the Chief Distribution Officer – Newcastle Permanent at NGM Group. Paul joined Newcastle Permanent in 2019 and has spent over 30 years in the finance industry. Paul has held senior leadership positions at major banks and smaller finance institutions and has a strong focus on delivering excellent business growth and customer advocacy outcomes. Paul’s Executive role has allowed him to support many local regional communities; he is an ambassador for Northern New South Wales Football (NNSWF) and has had the privilege of coaching in the local Premier League Soccer Competition over the last 12 years.

BA Communications

Board member since 2019

Chad is a well-recognised and respected media leader. A former editor of the Newcastle Herald, he is now head of publishing for Australian Community Media’s network of newspapers.

Chad has exceptionally strong links with the Hunter, and is passionate about championing issues, highlighting successes and providing a path to equitable access to services within regional communities. Chad holds various community leadership roles. These include being a board member of the Got Your Back Sista charity, Newcastle Football and the Joy Cummings Centre Reserve Trust as well as a foundation committee member of the Hunter Region Sporting Hall of Fame. He has served on Mindframe’s national group advising on the media portrayal of suicide and mental illness and has been part of the alumni advisory committee for The University of Newcastle.

Chad is a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a past chair of the external advisory board for the University's Bachelor of Communication program.