Our independent board

​​​​​The Regional Investment Corporation is governed by an independent board.

The role of the board is to ensure the proper, efficient and effective performance of our key functions.

Our board is appointed by the:

  • Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and Minister for Emergency Management
  • Minister for Finance.

Portrait of Karen Smith-Pomeroy


Karen Smith-Pomeroy

Ms Karen Smith-Pomeroy was appointed Chair of the Regional Investment Corporation board in March 2020.

Karen is an experienced non-executive director, with involvement in several market sectors including agribusiness, energy, property and financial services. She has significant experience as a senior executive in the financial services sector. Karen has specific expertise in risk and governance, deep expertise in credit risk and specialist knowledge of a number of industry sectors, including property, energy and infrastructure.

Karen is currently a non-executive director of Kina Securities Limited, Stanwell Corporation Limited, and Queensland Treasury Corporation (Capital Markets Board). She is also the Chair of National Affordable Housing Consortium. Karen holds accounting qualifications and is a Graduate of the Advanced Risk Management Course Wharton College, University of Pennsylvania, USA.

Karen is also a Fellow of the Institute of Public Accountants, Senior Fellow of the Financial Services Institute of Australasia, and a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Portrait of Prue Bondfield


Prue Bondfield

Ms Prue Bondfield has significant agribusiness and farming expertise from her role as General Manager and Director of the Palgrove Group, a corporate livestock business with properties in Queensland and NSW. Prue holds a Law degree and has strong agriculture industry networks from various roles on Commonwealth and State entities and advisory committees.

Prue is currently a Director of Australian Livestock Export Corporation Ltd and Black Box Co Pty Ltd.

Prue was Chair of the Beef Industry Sustainability Framework Steering Committee, which was formed by the Red Meat Advisory Council. Prue was previously a Director of the State Management Council for the NSW Livestock Health and Pest Authorities, and the Beef Improvement Association.

Portrait of Sharon Starick


Sharon Starick

Ms Sharon Starick runs a combined grain and pork business in the Murraylands in South Australia. She brings not only practical on-farm knowledge, but 20 years’ experience with industry bodies, natural resource management groups, government boards and other private and public organisations.

Sharon is the current Chair of Animal Health Australia and APIQ which is the quality assurance program for the pork industry. Sharon is also on the board of the Grains Research and Development Corporation, Murray Plains Farmers, Nature Foundation and Royal Automobile Association of SA. 

Until 2020, Sharon was the Chair of Rural Business Support, which provides rural financial counselling services for South Australia and Northern Territory. ​

Portrait of Sally Freeman


Sally Freeman

Ms Sally Freeman is an experienced Non-Executive Director with a proven ability in risk management, financial and internal audit, board governance, and compliance.  

Sally’s current directorships include Netwealth, Netwealth Superannuation Services and Eastern Health. Sally is currently an audit committee member of Health Share Victoria, Commonwealth Games Australia, and Caulfield Grammar.  Sally’s executive career comprised over 30 years’ experience in the Accounting and Consultancy industries culminating in number of leadership roles with KPMG: Global Executive - Risk Consulting Services, Australia Managing Partner Risk Consulting, Partner in charge Board Advisory and Managing Partner Internal Audit. 

Sally is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, and a member of Chief Executive Women.

Mark Tucker Board Member


Mark Tucker

Mr Mark Tucker was appointed to the RIC Board in April 2023. 

Mark brings extensive experience as a Deputy Secretary across Australian Government departments including Agriculture, Fisheries, Forestry, Water and Environment, Communications, and the Arts.  

In 2021, Mark was the Senior Agriculture Industry Engagement Officer for the Federal Government during the COVID pandemic. He also conducted independent reviews of the financial sustainability of the Australian Antarctic Division and the Overseas Agriculture Counsellor Network.  

Most recently, Mark held the position of Member of the Bureau of Meteorology Audit Committee and Deputy Chair of the Bureau of Meteorology Financial Statements Sub-Committee.