Veteran John Greig appointed incoming chair of Deloitte in Australia

31 March 2024 3 min. read
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After completing his full term in May, long-time Deloitte Australia chairman Tom Imbesi will hand over duties to former Queensland managing partner and four-decade company veteran John Greig.

Professional services firm Deloitte has appointed current deputy John Greig as its next Australian chair, with Greig taking over from Tom Imbesi from the beginning of June.

A three-decade partnership stalwart, Greig until recently served as managing partner for Queensland, and is a long-standing member of the board. The transition follows KPMG’s recent veteran handover, while PwC is now on the hunt for an independent chair.

Veteran John Greig appointed incoming chair of Deloitte in Australia

Greig’s elevation to the top role coincides with his 40th anniversary at the firm, having first joined Deloitte as a cadet in 1984 while undertaking an accounting degree at the Queensland University of Technology. Ten years on he was admitted to the partnership, while later spending the best part of a decade as managing partner in Brisbane before handing over to Judith Donovan in 2022 to concentrate on a lead client partner role for the 2032 Olympics.

Greig’s elevation also coincides with an especially sharp focus on governance at the Big Four following the PwC government tax scandal, which the latter has responded to by vowing to bring in an independent chair by the middle of the year. Offshoot Scyne also appointed an outsider in John Mullen, while prior to the full extent of the fall-out KPMG gave the seat to one of its own veterans, Martin Sheppard. Greig is obviously not oblivious to the current landscape.

“I’m honoured to have been elected incoming chair of Deloitte Australia at a pivotal time for professional services,” Greig stated. “The board’s role is to provide robust governance over our firm and set the tone to maintain and enhance the trust of our internal and external stakeholders. I look forward to continuing to work closely with my fellow board members to help guide the firm through this period of significant change.”

Greig will succeed Tom Imbesi, who is yet to announce his future intentions but will complete his maximum term at the end of May after first taking up the role in mid-2017, with Greig giving particular praise to his leadership and guidance during the challenges of Covid-19. A global board member with a background in auditing, Imbesi has also been a partner at the firm since the 90s, including a two-year stint as managing partner of Victoria to 2017.

An expert in restructuring – including as a joint administrator on the award-winning Virgin turnaround – Greig has been a Deloitte director for more than a decade, including as a member of the board’s audit, remuneration, leadership development and partner admissions and succession sub-committees. Should that sound somewhat staid, Greig also at one stage co-owned Brisbane live music venue The Triffid alongside Powderfinger bassist John Collins.