Chair Trustee and PIOB Member
PIOB Member – Since 2020
Retired public law practitioner and consultant based in Wellington, New Zealand. He has a background in public sector and independent legal practice, public and not-for-profit sector governance roles, experience as an independent adviser and reviewer, international development work in the area of public sector governance and accountability, and audit, assurance, and ethical standard-setting both in New Zealand and internationally.
His international work has drawn on his public law and governance experience gained since the 1980s. Most recently, he had his own legal practice in Wellington from 2006 until his retirement in 2022. Before then, he was Assistant Auditor-General, Legal at the New Zealand Office of the Auditor-General (1998 to 2006). He is also a former Director of the New Zealand Law Commission (New Zealand’s law reform agency).
Besides his legal background, he had an extensive international consultancy practice from 2008 to 2020, both in his own capacity and in association with consultancy organisations. He undertook projects for The World Bank and the Asian Development Bank in South-East Asia and the Pacific, and work in the Pacific funded by the New Zealand and Australian aid programs. He has also published and presented papers internationally on public sector finance, governance, and accountability.
This background gives him a unique combination of skills in law, governance and management, public finance, and auditing. In 2011 he was appointed an inaugural member of New Zealand’s independent audit standard setting board, the New Zealand Auditing and Assurance Standards Board. In 2016, he became the Chair of the Board in recognition of his independent perspective on standard setting. In that capacity he was also appointed a member of the Australian Auditing and Assurance Standards Board, under a reciprocal membership arrangement between the two countries. Robert served in these roles until his retirement in June 2022. He represented the New Zealand board in international standard setting fora, and was a prominent member of the National Standard Setters group that engages regularly with the IAASB and IESBA. This led indirectly to his appointment to the PIOB, as a nominee of IOSCO, in 2020, and his reappointment by the Monitoring Group in early 2023.