Commissioners are appointed for their high level of expertise in one or more of the fields of fisheries management, fishing industry operations, science, natural resource management, economics, business or financial management, law, public sector administration or governance.

AFMA’s responsibilities are shared between a commission and the Chief Executive Officer:

  • The AFMA Commission is responsible for domestic fisheries management.
  • The Chief Executive Officer is responsible for foreign compliance, and for assisting the commission and giving effect to its decisions. The Chief Executive Officer is responsible for the agency that supports these functions.

The CEO is appointed on a full-time basis and is also a commissioner. All other commissioners are appointed on a part-time basis.

Commissioners cannot hold any executive position in a fishing industry association, nor can they have a controlling interest or executive role in any entity holding a Commonwealth fishing concession.

The current AFMA commissioners appointed from 1 July 2014 are:


Ms Helen
Kroger  | Chairperson

Appointed for a 5 year term from 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2022.

Helen has held leadership positions in the private, public and not for profit sectors for the last 20 years.  She is a former Liberal Senator for Victoria, Government Whip and active former member of numerous key Senate and Joint Committees.  She has extensive board experience and advises corporations on regulatory and compliance, governance, communications and stakeholder management issues.

Mr Ian Cartwright  | Commissioner

Reappointed for a 3 year term from 30 September 2016 to 30 June 2019.

 Ian has a Master of Science in Economics, is Chair of the Tasmanian Fisheries Research Advisory Board and chair of various fisheries committees. His expertise covers commercial fishing, fisheries science, natural resource management, economics and business management.
Ms Renata Brooks  | Commissioner

Appointed for a 3 year term from 30 September 2016 to 30 June 2019.

Renata Brooks is an independent director and consultant. Previously she was Deputy Director General, Land and Natural Resources in the New South Wales Department of Primary Industries, with responsibility for the NSW crown land estate, natural resource policy and programs, and coordination of primary industry policy. She has held senior executive positions within the NSW Department of Primary Industries in the areas of science and research, agriculture, fisheries, biosecurity, compliance and mine safety.
Ms Catherine Cooper  |Deputy Chairperson

Appointed for a 5 year term from 1 July 2014 to 30 June 2019.

 Catherine currently chairs the South Australian Fisheries and Aquaculture Research Advisory Committee and Aquaculture Advisory Council. Catherine is an industry leader and she was a finalist in both the 1997 and 1998 Telstra Business Women’s Awards. She has extensive committee and board experience including as former Chair of the Fisheries Council of South Australia.
Prof Keith Sainsbury  | Commissioner

Reappointed for a 3 year term from 30 September 2016 to 30 June 2019.

 Keith is Director of SainSolutions, Professor of Marine Systems Science (University of Tasmania) and Vice-Chair of the Board of the Marine Stewardship Council. His internationally recognised expertise covers fisheries science, natural resource management and marine ecology.
Dr James Findlay  |Chief Executive Officer

Reappointed for a 3 year term from 28 March 2016 to 27 March 2019.

 An AFMA Commissioner and AFMA CEO. James has a PhD in fisheries biology and has held senior government roles across fisheries science, policy and management. He has also held senior government roles in other natural resource management areas including climate adaptation and sustainable water use. He was a research consultant in aquatic animal health for the aquaculture industry and was a senior lecturer in genetics at the University of Tasmania.
Mr Richard Stevens  | Commissioner

Reappointed for a 3 year term from 30 September 2016 to 30 June 2019.

 An AFMA Commissioner and Deputy Chairperson since 2009, and AFMA Director 2004 to 2008.

Richard has been involved in the Australian Seafood Industry since 1977, holding senior executive positions at both the State and Commonwealth level. Since 2001, he has undertaken numerous reviews of fisheries management arrangements, including in SA, NSW, and the Torres Strait, and currently chairs a number of fishery related committees, including the NSW Ministerial Fisheries Advisory Council and the NT Recreational Fishing Advisory Committee. Richard’s expertise covers natural resource management, policy and planning, and economics.