Team Profiles

David Norman


David Norman is the Chief Executive Officer of the Future Fuels Cooperative Research Centre (CRC). David is responsible for implementing the vision and mission of Future Fuels CRC and managing its operations.

David was the Chief Executive Officer of the Energy Pipelines CRC and was responsible for leading the successful bid to create Future Fuels CRC.

David has over 20 years of experience with Royal Dutch Shell in an array of commercial, managerial and technical roles, both in Australia and globally. His most recent role was General Manager of LNG for Transport developing a visionary new fuel for the trucking, marine and mining industries using locally sourced natural gas as a substitute for existing diesel fuel. Prior to this he was deeply involved in scenarios and options for the future of energy as Head of Strategy and Business Development for Shell Downstream Australia. David’s early roles included Plant Manager of a major oil refinery, Inspection Integrity Engineer and Turnaround Change Manager.

David graduated in Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering from the University of Melbourne and has completed a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) from Deakin University. He is a member of Engineers Australia and the Australian Institute of Energy.

Dr Jeremy Harris

Projects Manager 

Jeremy Harris brings over 25 years of experience in oil, gas, electricity, renewables and hydrogen development.

Jeremy worked for over 21 years with Shell/Viva in a range of roles in Australia and Overseas building a deep knowledge of the fuel energy requirements of Australia and the end-to-end energy value chain.

In 2018, Jeremy established his own consulting business, LocoParentis, to support Australian based companies looking to decarbonise their energy requirements or participate in the zero-carbon economy, carrying out market research or business strategy development for the likes of BOSCH, Mitsui and ENGIE.

Jeremy has also co-founded, 123V, a hydrogen project development company, focusing on FCEV heavy transport that has several projects under development and as a result is familiar with the business pitfalls and hurdles the energy transition faces in Australia.

Finally, Jeremy has good experience with CRC’s having gained his PhD from the Antarctic and Southern Ocean CRC at University of Tasmania, one of the first CRC’s ever funded.

Martha Le

Research Coordinator Program 1: Future Fuels Technology and Markets

Martha manages a portfolio of industry-led research projects focusing on understanding the technical, economic, market barriers and opportunities for the use of future fuels.

Martha Le has over 20 years of experience in the gas and energy industry. She graduated in Chemical Engineering from the University of Sydney. She started her career as an engineering graduate in AGL then moved on to other technical, managerial and commercial roles within AGL, Jemena and AusNet Services.

She has extensive experience working in the gas distribution assets management area. Her experience also includes managing and leading a NATA accredited facility to provide technical and engineering services in the areas of testing appliances, plastics and components.

She is a member of Australian Standards committee “AG-001 (Gas Appliances)”, and member of Sub-committee “AG-001-02”. She is a member of Engineers Australia. Her other activities include being a NATA technical assessor.

Dr Stephen McGrail

Research Coordinator Program 2: Social Acceptance, Public Safety & Security Of Supply

Stephen brings a diverse background to this role having worked in academia over the past decade and previously in the private sector. As a university-based researcher, he’s held positions in sociology (at Monash University), applied social research (Swinburne) and eco-innovation (University of Melbourne). In these roles, Stephen was involved in transdisciplinary climate change mitigation-focussed research – involving societal actors in the co-production of visions of sociotechnical alternatives and associated modelling – and transition studies research on the dynamics of socio-technical system change. His doctoral research appraised CSIRO’s cross-sectoral energy futures forums and evaluated the contribution of such forward-looking studies and transdisciplinary work to low-carbon transitions.

Prior to academia, Stephen worked for about a decade in strategic advisory and advertising firms, and in other professional services roles. This work included: community engagement, policy, strategy and public reporting work on environmental, social licence, and corporate social responsibility challenges; and work as a strategy planner and cultural analyst. In this work he also gained experience as a facilitator in stakeholder dialogue, ‘learning circle’, and professional development contexts. He has related degrees in marketing and strategic foresight, and also holds MA and PhD degrees.

Neil Fawcett

Business Manager and Company Secretary

Neil has extensive experience in a range of senior financial management roles across numerous industries, and brings a wealth of financial knowledge to the CRC.  His previous employment includes Ernst & Young Auditing and Consulting (Melbourne and USA), GE Commercial, State Street Australia Limited, and as the Chief Financial Officer and Company Secretary of Benetas, a large not-for-profit aged care provider. Neil is a Chartered Accountant and a member of both the Australian Institute of Company Directors and Governance Institute of Australia.

George Whittaker

Development and Communication Manager

George manages the communications program for the CRC and its research activities, engaging and supporting the CRC’s diverse group of stakeholders to achieve their shared goals and positive research outcomes. He also develops the future of our work, beyond the CRC original term which completes in 2025.

George has over twenty years of experience in corporate communications in the energy, technology and government sectors in both Australia and the United Kingdom and graduated in Physics from Imperial College, London.

Benjy Lee

Strategic Adviser

Benjy Lee is a Strategic Adviser to Future Fuels CRC and an independent consultant, who specialises in energy and climate policy development, future fuels research and net zero carbon strategies.

Benjy has over two decades of experience covering environmental engineering, carbon management, commercial and public affairs roles across a variety of sectors, with the last decade at Jemena where he played a key role in shaping their energy policy advocacy and stakeholder engagement approach.

Benjy has also worked collaboratively on energy policy development through his contribution to many industry associations, including the Business Council of Australia, Energy Networks Australia, Ai Group, Australian Hydrogen Council, Bioenergy Australia, Australian Pipelines and Gas Association, and to improve customer outcomes across the energy sector as a former Deputy Chair of the Energy Charter’s Industry Working Group.

Douglas Proud

Research and Utilisation Coordinator Program 3: Network Lifecycle Management

Douglas coordinates a series of research projects focussed on ensuring the compatibility of existing and planned network infrastructure with future fuels, such as hydrogen and biomethane. A key focus of this role is facilitating the engagement between researchers and industry/regulatory stakeholders, to maximise the utilisation and dissemination of research outcomes.

Douglas has unique research experience in renewable fuels and decarbonisation. After graduating in Mechanical and Sustainable Energy Engineering from The University of Adelaide, he recently completed his PhD thesis focussed on studying new combustion techniques for the development of low-emissions and fuel-flexible gas turbines.

Douglas has also been involved in several research projects within the end-use appliance stream of the Future Fuels CRC. Most recently, his research at The University of Adelaide has assessed the compatibility of domestic and industrial combustion systems with hydrogen as a fuel source. In addition to the technical background, this experience has provided him with an understanding of the operation of the CRC and the importance of the relationship between industry and research.