Christmas Island Strategic Assessment - Reference Group Members

The Australian Government is delivering a number of initiatives to support economic activity and build a sustainable economy on Christmas Island, including supporting tourism and releasing Crown land for development.

To protect Christmas Island's unique environment and support economic development, the Australian Government is completing a whole-of-island Strategic Assessment under national environment law.

I am delighted to announce that I have appointed the following members of the Christmas Island community to the Community Reference Group for the Strategic Assessment:

  • Ms Vanessa Bennett
  • Mr Patrick Chan
  • Mr James Keogh
  • Mr David Lee
  • Mr Gregory McIntosh
  • Ms Lisa Preston
  • Mr Gordon Thomson
  • Mr Philip Tubb
  • Ms Joy Wickenden

The appointments follow an open Expression of Interest process.

Mrs Natasha Griggs, Administrator of Christmas Island and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands will Chair the Group, with the first meeting to be held in mid-August.

The Strategic Assessment of Christmas Island will provide certainty for future development, and balance economic activity with environmental protection. I am confident that the Community Reference Group's contribution will deliver a Strategic Assessment Plan that is consistent with community aspirations, is practical and economically viable. More information can be found on the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Regional Development's website at

I look forward to progressing this important Australian Government initiative.