Chair of Council Announcement

Tuesday 26th March 2024

The College is delighted to announce the appointment of Heidi Venamore PSM as the new Chair of Council.

Heidi is a distinguished diplomat with over 32 years of service to the Australian Government. She has recently completed four years as the Australian Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates and was the Ambassador to Jordan from 2012–2016. She was awarded the Public Service Medal (PSM) in 2004 for outstanding service in furthering Australia’s interests in Iraq, and the Defence Overseas Service Medal in 2023 for her leadership of Australia’s 2021 evacuation of 4,000 people from Afghanistan to Australia.

She holds a Master’s degree in International Law from the University of Cambridge, a Graduate diploma in Foreign Affairs and Trade from the Australian National University, and a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Queensland.

Heidi brings a vast array of governance skills and experience to Council, having led complex operations in a global context. She is passionate about the rich, rounded education Marlborough provides young people, and the wonderful start in life it offers. She is keen to help further the strides made by the College in embracing a more socially representative pupil body and to contribute to a strong, sustainable trajectory for the College.

Amongst her interests, Heidi is an accomplished botanical artist. She was commissioned to paint Australia’s gift to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II to celebrate her Platinum Jubilee and by the Jordanian Royal family to paint a set of two paintings as a gift for the then HRH The Prince of Wales on the occasion of his 70th birthday. In 2017, the Royal Horticultural Society purchased a painting by Heidi of a dahlia for their collection of significant original botanical illustrations. Heidi is a Fellow of the Linnaean Society and an artist member of the Chelsea Physic Garden Florilegium Society.

Heidi said: “I am delighted to take up this position and I look forward to playing my part in helping this exceptional school build on opportunities and navigate a complex future, in order that Marlburians may continue to flourish and make meaningful contributions in a rapidly changing world.”

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