Governing Board
Torrens University Australia’s Governing Board oversees operational performance and discusses the strategic direction of the group.
View Corporate Governance Statement

Governance structure

Governing Board committee

The Governing Board has three committees which meet quarterly before each board meeting.
Finance committee provides expert advice to the Governing Board on financial performance in the current year and the financial implications of any future plans.
Audit and Risk committee provides expert advice to the Governing Board on audit and risk performance.
The Nominations committee provides expert advice to the Governing Board on:

  • The Board committee structure and makeup
  • Identifying suitable candidates for board vacancies



Governing Board members

Jim Varghese AM, Chancellor

Jim Varghese AM became Chancellor of Torrens University Australia in January 2022. He is the National Chair and Director of the Australia India Business Council Ltd and the Chairman of the Leadership Company Qld Pty Ltd. Prior to 2008 Jim completed an outstanding 30-year career in the public sector that included experience as a Chief Executive in leading government agencies covering Transport, Main Roads, Education, Training, Employment and Primary Industries in both the Victorian and Queensland public sector. Jim served for over three years as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Queensland. He has also served on the Council of Queensland University of Technology, the Senate of University of Queensland and the Council of the University of Southern Queensland, along with serving on the Council of the Victoria Institute of Technology. Jim was awarded the Centenary Medal and the Order of Australia for services to the public sector and community.

Linda Brown, President

Linda joined Torrens University as President in September 2014 after more than 23 years of management experience in the education sector in Australia and the United Kingdom. With a diverse background incorporating leadership in private, public, government, social enterprise, commercial and education sectors, Linda is internationally recognised as an innovative, strategic thinker with leadership skills to drive exceptional business performance, and is passionate about education and training for all. In 2022, Linda Brown was named Australia’s EY Entrepreneur of the Year and represented the nation at the global Entrepreneur of the Year event in Monaco.

Prior to joining Torrens University, Linda was Deputy Vice Chancellor and Director of TAFE at Swinburne University, Melbourne where she was responsible for maximising the dual sector advantage, driving the sustainability and social inclusion strategies across the University, and managing the TAFE Division. Linda completed her Master of Science (Education Management) at Manchester Metropolitan University.

Hon. Greg Crafter AO

Greg was a member of the South Australian Parliament between 1979 and 1993, holding Ministerial office for eleven of those years. He was Minister of Education for seven years. Greg was President of the Geneva based International Baccalaureate Organisation between 1996 and 2003. He is currently Chair of the National Catholic Education Commission which represents the 760,000 students and 93,000 staff in Australia’s Catholic schools. He has developed a career as a Non Executive Director and consultant serving on private company, public and charitable boards and has been appointed to Public Sector Boards and Commissions of Enquiry by both Liberal and Labor governments.

Michael Reed

Michael, formerly Regional Counsel – Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa at Laureate International Universities. Prior to joining Laureate he was a partner at DLA Piper, a leading global law firm and has practised as a solicitor for over 35 years.

Karl McDonnell

Karl McDonnell is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Strategic Education, Inc. Karl initially joined the Company in 2006 as Chief Operating Officer. He joined the Company’s Board of Directors in 2011 and in 2013 was named President and Chief Executive Officer. Previously, he was Chief Operating Officer of InteliStaf Healthcare, Inc., one of the nation’s largest privately held healthcare staffing firms. He also served as Vice President of the Investment Banking Division at Goldman, Sachs & Co. Karl has held senior management positions with several Fortune 100 companies, including The Walt Disney Co.

Daniel Jackson

Daniel Jackson is the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Strategic Education, Inc.. Previously he served as Treasurer and Senior Vice President of Finance for Strayer Education, Inc., and as Regional Vice President of Operations, Director of Business Operations, and Campus Director for Strayer University. Prior to joining Strayer, Daniel held financial and operational roles with Legg Mason Wood Walker and Fairmont Schools Inc.

Laura Anderson

Laura Anderson is an International Company Director, Entrepreneur and Global Philanthropist. Laura has worked extensively across governments and industries locally and globally as a senior adviser on global governance, strategy transformation and risk optimisation. Her professional speciality is harnessing the power of big data and its effect on global supply chains, trade, investment and infrastructure development. Laura is Chair of the United Nations UNCTAD Board of Advisors for the Creative Economy Programme, Chair of Judges for the World Entrepreneur of the Year Awards in Oceania and the global Space Technology Entrepreneur S-Booster Awards. Laura is a global thought leader on the development of the creative economy and its impact on the future of industry structures, social cohesion and economic innovation. She is a champion for the global transformation across The Fourth Industrial Revolution and empowering the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Dr. Michael McRobbie AO

Dr. Michael A. McRobbie joined the Torrens University Australia Governing Board in September 2023. Dr. McRobbie serves as University Chancellor, President Emeritus, and University Professor at Indiana University (IU). He previously served as the 18th President of IU, one of the largest universities in the U.S., from the 1st of July 2007 until his retirement on the 30th of June 2021. Dr. McRobbie served as a vice chair of the board of directors of Indiana University Health System until his retirement from IU. A native of Australia, Dr. McRobbie holds a Bachelor of Arts degree with first class honours from the University of Queensland, and a Ph.D. from Australian National University. Dr. McRobbie has been a member of the Strategic Education, Inc. board since 2021.

Michael Thawley AO

The Honorable Michael Thawley is a former Australian Ambassador to the United States of America. He has a broad range of international and Australian-based business leadership roles, including as former vice-chairman of Capital Group International, a member of Capitol Group Companies. Mr. Thawley was born in London and was educated at Australian National University and Surrey University.

Cookies help us improve your website experience.
By using our website, you agree to our use of cookies.