Mayor Gail has lived in the City of Willoughby with her husband Jon, and children Miriam and Lincoln, since 1996.
She is passionate about community.
Mayor Gail was first elected as a Councillor for Sailors Bay Ward in 2009, became Deputy Mayor in 2013, and was elected Mayor of Willoughby City Council in April 2014. She is Willoughby’s second popularly elected mayor and the 50th Mayor in the City’s 150 year history.
Since taking office, Mayor Gail has sought to promote Chatswood as an economic and cultural hub. As a result of her leadership, the exciting Vivid Light Festival was displayed outside the City of Sydney for the first time in 2015, bringing many first time visitors to Chatswood. Mayor Gail has also been pleased to support the Chatswood Interchange precinct, enhancing Chatswood’s reputation as a genuine food destination; been excited to have led discussions that have resulted in Council acquiring the Artarmon Bowling Club site for the long term benefit of the Willoughby community; and been committed to working with Federal and State Government to facilitate a long term plan for the Gore Hill precinct.
Mayor Gail has excellent working relationships with businesses and professional groups in the Chatswood CBD, and is Council’s representative on the Joint Regional Planning Panel, which considers major planning initiatives in the region.
She regularly advocates to enhance the village atmosphere enjoyed by many residents in Artarmon, Castlecrag, Castle Cove, Chatswood West, Naremburn, Northbridge and Willoughby.
She is a strong supporter of Bushcare, having been a significant part of the establishment of the national Bushcare Major Day Out event and has been a regular local bush carer.
Mayor Gail does not shy away from the tough decisions. Over the past two years Gail has been actively involved in the restructuring of Willoughby Council, under a new General Manager, to ensure efficient value for money services for Willoughby rate-payers. Following extensive community consultation, an infrastructure levy has also been introduced to ensure the long term serviceability of essential infrastructure like road, parks and storm water. These initiatives, combined with Council’s strong financial condition and first class regional facilities, including The Concourse, has meant Willoughby Council has been well positioned to respond to the State Government’s Fit for the Future Initiative.
Since joining Council, Mayor Gail’s priorities have included improving traffic and parking congestion in the Willoughby LGA; working to optimise sport and recreation facilities available to Willoughby residents, both young and aged; continuing to develop Willoughby’s arts and entertainment offerings; supporting our City of diversity and ensuring appropriate protection for the City’s unique natural and built heritage.
Mayor Gail is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, holds a Bachelor of Business degree from UTS and was previously a Project Manager with significant Australian financial services organisations. Prior to being elected to Council, Gail was President of the Wenona Parents’ Association and Vice President of NSW Parents’ Council and actively involved with the SHORE community.
The Mayor is Patron of:
- Castlecove Golf Club
- Chatswood Golf Club
- Chatswood RSL Club
- Chatswood Sub-Branch of Returned Services League of Australia
- Club Willoughby
- Kooroora Tennis Club
- North Shore Orchid Society
- Northbridge Golf Club
- Northbridge Amateur Swimming Club
- Northern Suburbs Tennis Association
- U3A Choir
- UTS Northern Suburbs Athletic Club
- Willoughby District Historical Society
- Willoughby Park Bowling Club
- Willoughby Theatre Company
Mayor Gail’s other community commitments include:
Sydney (North) Planning Panel – formerly the Joint Regional Planning Panel
2014 – Present
Joint regional planning panels provide independent, merit-based decision making on regionally significant development.
Northern Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils (NSROC)
2014 – 2017
The NSROC member Councils collaborate on key issues and develop strategies to benefit the region as a whole.
Cancer Council NSW
Regional Advisory Committee and Community Speaker
2007 – Present
As a community speaker for the Council Cancer, Gail undertakes education programmes in the community relating to a wide variety of cancer issues. Such topics are health and wellbeing and save your own skin.
Bushcare’s Major Day Out
Executive Committee Member
2010 – 2016
Bushcare’s Major Day Out (BMDO) is an annual national event designed to promote awareness and participation in caring for our bushland.
Willoughby Retirement Community Association
President and Board Member
2014 – 2015
The Willoughby Retirement Community Association is a non profit community association providing self care and hostel accommodation for retired and aged people, with a priority for those from Willoughby and neighbouring areas.
Independent assessment panel for the Local Sporting Champions Program
2010 – 2015
The Local Sporting Champions program is an Australian Government initiative designed to provide financial assistance for young people aged 12-18 towards the cost of travel, accommodation, uniforms or equipment when competing, coaching or officiating at an official national sporting organisation (NSO) endorsed state, national or international sporting championships or a School Sport Australia state or national championships.
NSW Parents’ Council
At various times, Vice President, Exec Committee and School Liaison
2001 – 2014
The NSW Parents’ Council represents the interests of families attending Independent Schools. The Council provides advocacy on a variety of issues including funding and children with disabilities.