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Goyder to go before next year’s Qantas AGM

written by Jake Nelson | October 11, 2023

Qantas chair Richard Goyder speaks at the 2022 AGM. (Image: Qantas webcast)

Qantas chairman Richard Goyder is bowing to public pressure and will retire before the 2024 AGM.

Goyder, who has faced demands to step down amid the furore surrounding the early exit of former CEO Alan Joyce, will hand over the reins in what the Flying Kangaroo says is part of a larger “board renewal”, recognising the recent damage to the brand and hoping to restore trust in Qantas.

In a statement, Goyder, who has served as chair since 2018, said the Board recognises that “accountability is required to restore trust”.

“Qantas has gone through an incredibly difficult period since our operation was grounded during the pandemic. The recovery has not been easy, and mistakes were made. We again apologise for those times where we got it wrong,” he said.

“I have always sought to act in the best interests of Qantas. Measured and orderly succession at Board level will support the important work underway led by Vanessa and her new management team.


“Fundamentally, the Group is in a very strong position to overcome its current challenges and deliver for all its stakeholders in the years ahead.”

Jacqueline Hey and Maxine Brenner are also set to retire at the airline’s half-year results in February after 10 years, while non-executive director Michael L’Estrange will step down at this year’s AGM as announced in May.

Three new directors – Doug Parker, Dr Heather Smith, and CEO and managing director Vanessa Hudson – as well as existing directors Todd Sampson and Belinda Hutchinson will offer themselves for election at this year’s AGM in November.

According to Qantas, following the turnover the average tenure on the Board at the 2024 AGM will be around three years, which will provide “a balance of fresh leadership with necessary continuity”.

Goyder has previously rebuffed calls to step down following a slew of bad press, telling The Australian in September he was “fully committed” to continuing on and overseeing the transition to new CEO Vanessa Hudson, who was originally to take up the position following November’s AGM.

“I will get to work on these things, and we’ll do what we need to do. And I think my role in that is pretty important,” he said.

The airline is already searching for a new chair and non-executive directors.

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