B.Eng (Hons.) Qld., MBA Deakin, MIE Aust
Russell Smith was appointed to the School Council in 2020. He attended Churchie from 1980 to 1985 as a member of Casey House. His three sons Josh, Xavier and Lachie also attended the school between 2009 and 2019. Russell is married to Karen and as well as three sons, also has a daughter Emmy.
Russell is an experienced transport infrastructure executive with an Engineering Honours degree from The University of Queensland, an MBA specialising in strategic management and 30 years’ experience in the transport infrastructure sector. His initial career was spent on the provision of port engineering, business planning and M&A advisory services for the transport industry worldwide before moving into the role of Global Head of Ports for Babcock & Brown, where he undertook the direct acquisition of transport infrastructure assets for Prime Infrastructure. Based in London during this time, Russell focused on the European transport market, leading the acquisition of nine port assets to form a portfolio of assets involving 18 terminals spread throughout seven countries in Europe and a number of landlord ports in the UK.
Following this, Russell moved into an asset management role, with responsibility for Prime and then Brookfield’s global portfolio of transport assets, including the chairmanship of PD Ports in the UK, Euroports in Europe, Westnet Rail in Australia and DBCT in Australia, assets together encompassing 21 ports globally and over 5,000km of railway.
Returning to Australia, from 2011 to 2015, Russell was the Chief Executive Officer of the Port of Brisbane, responsible for all elements of the transition of a newly privatised port from a government corporation into a modern, private port company. Since joining GIP in 2015, Russell has led the acquisition by GIP of Australia’s largest rail company, Pacific National, and Australia’s largest port company, Port of Melbourne.
Russell is currently a Partner of GIP’s Australian business, the Chairman of Pacific National and a member of the Board of Directors of Port of Melbourne.