Commissioners and executive


Professor Hugh Durrant-Whyte


Hugh is an internationally recognised scientist and a world authority on artificial intelligence and robotics. He is also the current NSW Chief Scientist & Engineer. Before this, Hugh was the Chief Scientific Advisor, United Kingdom Ministry of Defence. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of London, the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Australian Academy of Sciences and recipient of numerous awards, including the MA Sargent Medal and NSW Scientist of the Year. Hugh has been Chair of the NSW Government’s Innovation and Productivity Council and head of National IT Australia.

Peter Cochrane

Assistant Commissioner

Peter chairs the Sydney Institute of Marine Science and the Australian Tropical Herbarium Board. Since 2016, he has been a Council Member of the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Peter was formerly CEO of Parks Australia, a member of the Commonwealth Environmental Water Holder Review Panel, and Chair and Director of the Commonwealth Marine Reserves Review that re- examined the science and zoning for 40 marine reserves.

Susan Madden

B. Ag Eco (Hons) University medal
Assistant Commissioner

Susan has over 20 years’ experience in agriculture and natural resources management. Since 2016, she has been on the board of Murray-Darling Basin Authority. Susan is also Chair of the Central West Local Land Services and was first appointed in 2017. She is a Technical Director, Natural Resources and Agriculture with GHD Pty Ltd and was formerly Executive Officer of Macquarie River Food and Fibre.


Bryce Wilde

BA (Hons), ExecMPA
Executive Director

Bryce started his career working in the private sector as a researcher, facilitator and later as a management consultant of his own business. He has over 25 years experience working in the NSW Government, with the last 18 years at the Natural Resources Commission. Since 2012, Bryce has been the Executive Director leading the Commission’s team to provide robust evidence based advice and thought leadership across diverse areas, including catchment management, forestry, biodiversity conservation, water planning and biosecurity. Prior to joining the Commission, Bryce was a senior manager at the Department of Juvenile Justice, primarily in learning and development.