The Board of Directors is committed to representing shareholders and protecting the interests of South32. Underpinned by strong corporate governance practices, the Board believes South32 has the right people and the right strategy to be positioned well for future growth.

Ms Karen Wood

BEd, LLB (Hons), FCIS, 63
Chair and Independent Non-Executive Director, appointed 1 November 2017 (Chair from 12 April 2019)

Karen Wood

Location: Australia

During her career, Ms Wood has attained a variety of executive and leadership skills which she brings to her role as Chair of South32.

She has held various senior global leadership roles with BHP, including Group Company Secretary, Chief People Officer and President Corporate Affairs and served as a member of BHP’s leadership team.

Ms Wood gained extensive expertise as a key adviser to the Board and CEO on matters of governance, the composition of leadership teams, development and succession planning, organisational design and culture, remuneration structures and stakeholder relations. She served as Chair of The Global Ethics Advisory Panel, the Disclosure Committee and as Chief Governance Officer.

Following the merger between BHP Limited and Billiton Plc in 2001, she established the multi-jurisdictional governance framework for the merged entity. She joined BHP as Group Company Secretary in 2001, and retired in 2014.

Ms Wood’s governance experience is strengthened by her membership of the Takeovers Panel (Australia) from 2000 to 2012 and her roles with the ASIC (Business Consultative Panel) and the Australian Federal Government's Business Regulatory Advisory Group.

Before joining BHP, she held the role of General Counsel and Company Secretary with Bonlac Foods Limited.

Following her retirement from BHP, Ms Wood chaired the BHP Foundation, where she oversaw grant provisions for not-for-profit organisations to deliver large, long-term global programs in the areas of natural resource governance, human capability and social inclusion and conserving and sustainably managing natural environments.

She is currently a Non-Executive Director of Djerriwarrh Investments Limited (and a member of the Audit Committee), a member of Chief Executive Women and 30% Club Australia and a Fellow of Monash University.

Current ASX listed directorships:

  • Djerriwarrh Investments Limited: Independent Non- Executive Director since July 2016.

Other Directorships and Offices:

  • Director, State Library Board of Victoria and Member of the Foundation Council;
  • Director, Robert Salzer Foundation; and
  • Vice President, Melbourne Cricket Club.

Mr Graham Kerr

BBUS, FCPA, 48
Chief Executive Officer since October 2014 Managing Director, appointed 21 January 2015

Graham Kerr South32-269Location: Australia

Mr Kerr has been our Chief Executive  Officer  since October 2014. He’s responsible for running all parts of our business. In May 2015, he led the charge on establishing South32 and its public listing in three countries.

Mr Kerr is passionate about health, safety and sustainability, with a strong track record in global resource development. Before joining us, he worked in a range of roles at BHP, including Chief Financial Officer and President of Diamonds and Specialty Products.

As President of Diamonds and Specialty Products, he was accountable for the Ekati Diamond Mine in Canada, the Richards Bay Minerals  Joint Venture in South Africa, diamond exploration in Angola, the Corridor Sands Project in Mozambique and the development of BHP’s potash portfolio in Canada. In 2004, he left BHP for two years to become General Manager Commercial for Iluka Resources.

Mr Kerr holds a Business degree from Edith Cowan University and studied at Deakin University to become a Certified Practicing Accountant

Other Directorships and Offices: 

  • Chair, CEOs for Gender Equity.

Mr Frank Cooper AO

AO, BCOM, FCA, FAICD, 63
Independent Non-Executive Director, appointed 7 May 2015 Chair of Risk and Audit Committee

Frank Cooper South32-255

Location: Australia

Mr Cooper’s combined experience gives him a uniquely rich understanding of the challenges and mechanisms of operating in different cultural and political environments. He brings this to South32, alongside a strong focus on organisational philosophy, values and standards.

Mr Cooper is a chartered accountant with over 35 years of experience in the finance and accounting profession. He previously held the position of Partner at both Ernst & Young and PricewaterhouseCoopers, and was Managing Partner for Arthur Andersen in Perth. During his time in the profession he specialised

in the mining, energy and utility sectors.

Mr Cooper is currently a Non- Executive Director of Woodside Petroleum Limited (including Chair of the Audit and Risk Committee and member of
the Human Resources and Compensation  Committee and Nominations Committee). Until 2006, he was a Director of Alinta Infrastructure Limited
and Alinta Funds Management Limited.

In 2014, Mr Cooper was awarded an Officer of the Order of Australia and was named West Australian of the Year in the Professions
category in 2015. Mr Cooper is also a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand.

Current ASX listed directorships:

  • Woodside Petroleum Limited: Independent Non- Executive Director since February 2013.

Other Directorships and Offices:

  • Commissioner and Chairman, Insurance Commission of Western Australia;
  • Member, Senate of the University of Western Australia;
  • Trustee, St John of God Health Care;
  • Director, St John of God Australia Limited;
  • Advisor, Azure Capital;
  • President, WA Council of the Australian Institute of Company Directors; and
  • Member, ASIC Director Advisory Panel.

Dr Xolani Mkhwanazi

BSC, MSC, and PHD (APPLIED PHYSICS), 64
Non-Independent Non-Executive Director, appointed 2 July 2015

Xolani Mkhwanazi South32-164

Location: South Africa

With vast experience across global and regional mining operations, combined with expertise in science, Dr Mkhwanazi has a deep understanding and appreciation for environmental and sustainability opportunities and risks as they relate to South32.

He was previously Chairman of BHP Billiton in South Africa and President and Chief Operations Officer of South Africa Aluminium with BHP Billiton. During this time,
he was responsible for the southern African aluminium smelters of Hillside, Bayside and Mozal with accountability for maximising their value and potential by providing
appropriate strategic direction, while also facilitating future aluminium opportunities in the region.

Dr Mkhwanazi also served as Chief Executive Officer of Bateman Africa Limited and at the National Electricity Regulator, where he was instrumental in the
restructuring of the electricity supply industry in South Africa.

Prior to this, he held senior positions at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, where he played  a significant role in the formulation of the South African National Science and Technology Policy. Earlier in his career, Dr Mkhwanazi was a Senior Scientist at the Atomic Energy Corporation and Head of the Physics Department at the University of Swaziland.

Dr Mkhwanazi is also a Director of JSE-listed Murray and Roberts Holdings Limited, where he is a member of the Risk Management Committee, Health, Safety and Environment Committee and Social and Ethics Committee. He has also been appointed as Chairperson of EOH Holdings Limited.

Current JSE listed directorships:

  • Murray and Roberts Holdings Limited: Independent Non- Executive Director since August 2015; andEOH Holdings Limited;
  • Director and Chairperson since 5 June 2019. 

Other Directorships and Offices:

  • Director, South32 South Africa Energy Coal Holdings (Pty) Ltd; and
  • Deputy   Chairman, The Public Investment
  • Corporation (SOC) Limited.

Dr Ntombifuthi (Futhi) Mtoba

DCom (Honoris Causa), BCompt (Hons), HDip Banking Law, BA (Econ)(Hons), BA (Arts), CA(SA), 64
Independent Non-Executive Director, appointed 7 May 2015

Ntombifuthi Mtoba South32-225

Location: South Africa

Dr Mtoba is a chartered accountant with an extensive career in business and community engagement in South Africa. In addition, she brings valuable sustainability and environmental experience to our Board.

Dr Mtoba joined Deloitte  and Touche South Africa in 1988, specialising in financial services. Later, she become one of the first African black women to be appointed as  a Partner by one of the Big Four accounting firms; she then became the first African woman Deputy Chairman and then Chairman of Deloitte Southern Africa.

Dr Mtoba has been a member of the International Monetary Fund Advisory Group of Sub-Saharan Africa, the World Economic Forum Global Advisory Council, the B20 Financing Growth 
and Infrastructure Task  Force and the B20 Transparency Task Team. She was also the first woman president of the Association for the Advancement of Black Accountants of Southern Africa.

She served as Chair of the Public Investment Corporation Limited, President of Business Unity South Africa, and board member of the Public Accountants and Auditors Board, the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants and the New Partnership for Africa’s Development Business Foundation.

Dr Mtoba is engaged in the regional and global community. Previously, she was on the board of the United Nations Global Compact.

For her contributions, Dr. Mtoba has received numerous awards, most recently Most Outstanding Leadership Women of the Year (Africa Economy Builders, 2018). She is also a Harvard Advanced Leadership Initiative Fellow (2017).

Other Directorships and Offices: 

  • Director, Discovery Bank Limited;
  • Director, Discovery Bank Holdings Limited;
  • Chairman and Trustee, WBD Trust;
  • Chair of Council, University of Pretoria;
  • Founding Trustee, ZM Foundation;
  • Trustee, Allan Gray Orbis Foundation Endowment; and
  • Trustee and Audit Committee Chairman, Nelson Mandela Foundation.

Mr Wayne Osborn

DIP ELECT ENG, MBA, FAICD, 67
Independent Non-Executive Director, appointed 7 May 2015 Chair of Remuneration Committee, Chair of Nomination and Governance Committee

Wayne Osborn South32-172

Location: Australia 

Mr Osborn brings over 40 years of experience from the mining, resources and manufacturing sectors to our Board.

Mr Osborn was Managing Director of Alcoa in Australia from 2001 until 2008, leading an integrated business comprised of bauxite mining, alumina refining, coal mining, power generation and aluminium smelting. This included operations in Victoria and Western Australia. His prior role at Alcoa included accountability for its Asia Pacific manufacturing operations in China, Japan, Korea and Australia.

He joined Alcoa in 1979 after working as an engineer in the iron ore and telecommunications sector.

Since 2008, Mr Osborn has worked as a Non-Executive Director in the mining, construction and energy industries. He was also Chairman of the Australian Institute of Marine Science, Chairman of the Western Australia Branch of the Australia Business Arts Foundation and Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Western Australia.
Mr Osborn is currently a Non-Executive Director of Wesfarmers Limited, where he is a member of the Remuneration Committee and the Nomination Committee.

He has been awarded a WA Business Leader Award from the Australian Business Arts Foundation in 2007 and an Australian Institute of Company Directors excellence award in 2018.

Current ASX listed directorships:

  • Wesfarmers Limited: Independent Non- Executive Director since March 2010.

Previous ASX listed directorships:

  • Alinta Energy Limited March  2011 until April 2017.

Other Directorships and Offices:

  • Fellow, Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering; and
  • International Fellow, Explorers Club (New York).

Mr Keith Rumble

BSc, MSc (Geology), 65
Independent Non-Executive Director, appointed 27 February 2015 Chair of Sustainability Committee

Keith Rumble South32-238

Location: South Africa 

Mr Rumble has more than 40 years of experience in the resources industry, specifically in titanium and platinum mining. He also has experience as a principal investor and private equity fund manager in Russia, India and other emerging markets. Mr Rumble contributes to the Board of South32 this valuable combination of skills and knowledge.

He has held various leadership roles including CEO of SUN Mining (a wholly-owned entity of the SUN Group), CEO of Impala Platinum (Pty) Ltd and CEO of Rio Tinto Iron and Titanium Inc in Canada.

Mr Rumble also worked for Verref, a division of the Anglo American Corporation, prior to joining Richards Bay Minerals in 1980, working in smelting and metallurgy, progressing to General Manager and later CEO in 1996.

Mr Rumble has been a Non- Executive Director of a variety of private companies, including Platinum Mining Corporation of India PLC, Barplats Holdings Limited, Western Platinum (Pty) Limited, Eastern Platinum (Pty) Limited and Sarplat Investments Limited. He was also an independent Non- Executive Director at BHP Billiton plc and BHP Limited and at JSE-listed Aveng Limited.

Mr Rumble completed the Stanford (US) Executive Program in 1990.

Other Directorships and Offices:

  • Director, Acetologix Pty Limited;
  • Director, Enzyme Technologies (Pty) Limited;
  • Director, Elite Wealth (Pty) Limited;
  • Member of Board of Governors, Rhodes University; and
  • Trustee, World Wildlife Fund, South Africa.

Dr Xiaoling Liu 

PhD (Extractive Metallurgy), BEng (Extractive Metallurgy), GAICD, FAusIMM, FTSE, 62
Independent Non-Executive Director, appointed 1 November 2017

Dr Xiaoling Liu

Location: Australia

Dr Xiaoling Liu is a metallurgical engineer with a 26 year career at the Rio Tinto Group. Dr Liu’s technical experience is an essential contribution to the South32 Board.
Dr Liu’s roles at Rio Tinto included General Manager and Managing Director positions in smelting operational management. She held other senior positions, including Managing Director Technical Services where she led Rio Tinto’s global technical services unit, and as President and Chief Executive Officer where she led the Borate business with integrated mining, processing, and supply chain operations in the United States, Europe and Asia.

Gained from this experience, Dr Liu contributes strong technical, strategic, marketing and risk management skills to the South32 Board.

She was a board member  of the California Chamber of Commerce, Vice President of the Board of Australian Aluminium Council, and member of the University Council of the University of Tasmania.

Before joining Rio Tinto, Dr  Liu held an academic position as Research Fellow of City University, London.

Since her retirement from Rio Tinto in 2014, Dr Liu has held the position of Non- Executive Director of Newcrest Mining Limited (including as a member of the Human Resources and Remuneration Committee; Audit and Risk Committee and Nominations Committee). She was also a Non-Executive Director of Iluka Resources Limited until April 2019 (including member of the Audit and Risk Committee and Nominations Committee). These roles have contributed  to Dr Liu’s skills and experience in remuneration, acquisition and divestment.
Dr Liu is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Science and Engineering, a Fellow of AusIMM and a member of Chief Executive Women.

Current ASX listed directorships: 

  • Newcrest Mining Limited: Independent Non- Executive Director since September 2015.

Previous ASX listed directorships:

  • Iluka Resources Limited: Independent Non- Executive Director February 2016 until April 2019.
  • Other Directorships and Offices:
  • Director, Melbourne Business School; and
  • Member, China Matters Advisory Council.