Kate McKenzie to join NBN board as Milne and Flannigan depart

Soon-to-be former Chorus chief and Telstra exec to join board of NBN in December.
Written by Chris Duckett, Contributor

The stakeholder ministers of the National Broadband Network -- Communications Minister Paul Fletcher and Minister for Finance Mathias Cormann -- have announced the appointment of Kate McKenzie to the NBN board.

McKenzie is currently in the metaphorical CEO departure lounge of New Zealand broadband wholesaler Chorus after announcing in August she would leave at the end of 2019.

McKenzie took on the role in February 2017, after resigning as Telstra's COO in July 2016.

She added at the time she was returning to Australia and did not intend to take on another executive role.

"Of course, my one regret is I'd love to take the fantastic Chorus fibre network back home with me, but yeah, that's probably not going to happen," McKenzie said at the time.

As well as NBN, McKenzie also hold places on the boards of Allianz Australia and Stockland when she joins the Australian broadband wholesaler on December 1.

At the same time, the ministers also announced that Justin Milne and Patrick Flannigan would step down from the board at the expiration of their terms on Sunday.

The pair joined the NBN board together in November 2013, alongside Internode founder Simon Hackett. Hackett was replaced by iiNet founder Michael Malone in April 2016.

Flannigan was a former head of construction at NBN, while Milne was an ex-Telstra executive who had close ties to former Communications Minister cum Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

As chair of MYOB, Milne oversaw the company's AU$1.6 billion acquisition by private equity firm KKR & Co. He was also chair of the ABC during the bumbled sacking of former ABC CEO Michelle Guthrie, who gained AU$1.64 million from the national broadcaster after she was sacked.

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