Top hon­our for business leader

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Opinion - By JON BAS­SETT

SU­BI­ACO res­i­dent Mark Barn­aba (51) has been ap­pointed a Mem­ber of the Or­der of Aus­tralia for ser­vice to in­vest­ment bank­ing and fi­nance, business ed­u­ca­tion, sports and cul­tural or­gan­i­sa­tions in Aus­tralia Day awards.

In 2011, he chaired the steer­ing com­mit­tee for the Com­mon­wealth Business Fo­rum at the Com­mon­wealth Heads of Gov­ern­ment Meet­ing in Kings Park.

“It was a big thing for a WA and re­stored the Com­mon­wealth’s fo­cus on us as a State,” Mr Barn­aba, a for­mer chair­man of Western Power and the West Coast Ea­gles, said.

After school at New­man Col­lege, he stud­ied sci­ence and eco­nomics at the Univer­sity of WA, be­fore com­plet­ing an MBA at Har­vard Business School in the US.

“I think I may have been the first West Aus­tralian to go there,” he said.

After about a decade work­ing over­seas, in­clud­ing London and Africa, Mr Barn­aba re­turned to Perth where his role in the WA business com­mu­nity in­cluded chair­ing Mac­quarie Group since 2012, co-founder of Azure Cap­i­tal, and di­rec­tor of Poyn­ton and Part­ners, be­fore be­com­ing chair­man of the Black Swan The­atre Company in 2013.

But he will not be­ing giv­ing up fi­nance for the stage.

“One of my strengths is know­ing my strengths and one of those is keep do­ing what I’m not com­pletely weak at,” Mr Barn­aba said.

Chair­ing the Su­bi­aco-based Edge Em­ploy­ment So­lu­tions for the dis­abled from 2006 to 2013 gave him an in­sight into how those with­out his ad­van­tages, and with phys­i­cal and men­tal hur­dles, suc- ceed in life.

“They made me re­alise is that most peo­ple don’t grasp what they got al­ready, and com­plain for the sake of com­plain­ing,” Mr Barn­aba said.

Mar­ried to wife Paige, with a son (8) and daugh­ter (7), he con­tin­ues to follow a tra­di­tional Ja­panese school of karate out­side of work.

Mark Barn­aba has been ap­pointed a Mem­ber of the Or­der of Aus­tralia.

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