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Board of Directors


Chairman - José Blanco

Jose BlancoBlanco Partners

Email - chairman@alabc.com.au

José has served as the chairman of the Australia-Latin America Business Council since its incorporation.

José is also the founding partner of Blanco Partners, an advisory firm that he established in August 2012, following a 22 year career at Banco Santander in Australia. The firm focuses on cross-border business between Australia, Spain and the major markets in Latin America.

From 1990 until January 2011, José served as the Country Manager of Banco Santander in Australia, then as an Adviser to the bank until July 2012. Before joining Banco Santander, José practiced law for 10 years, having been a partner in the Sydney-based firm, Bodors.

Other major positions held by José have been:

  • Vice-Chairman of the Australian Government’s Council on Australia Latin America Relations from 2001 to 2010. 
  • President of the Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Australia from 2001 to 2007.
  • Honorary Secretary of the Overseas Bankers Association of Australia from 1993 to 2001.
  • Member of the Advisory Board of the Institute of International Studies at the University of Technology Sydney, from 1997 to 2001.
  • Non-executive director of several companies.

José is the author of numerous articles on business issues related to the markets of Spain and Latin America, published in newspapers such as The Australian and Australian Financial Review. He has also been a speaker at numerous conferences and other forums held in Australia, Chile, Singapore and Spain.

Honours awarded to José include:

  • The Spanish "Orden de Merito Civil" in 1992. 
  • The Chilean "Orden de Bernardo O'Higgins" (Clase Comendador) in 1995. 
  • The "Orden Olímpica" from the Spanish Olympic Committee in 2001.



Vice-Chair SA - Michael Blake

Michael BlakeIndividual Member

Email - michael.blake@alabc.com.au

Michael Blake is the Senior Manager for the Agribusiness unit at Elders; he was formerly Marketing Manager - Wool at Elders; with a focus on market access, market intelligence, domestic and international market development as well as industry relations and innovation.

Following 20 years in the global wool arena, encompassing procuring, manufacturing and marketing throughout Europe, Asia, the Middle East and the Americas. Michael BSc degree in Agriculture, focussed on Animal Science, and has lived and worked in Australia, New Zealand, the Americas and Europe. He has also travelled extensively throughout Asia and the Middle East for the wool textile industry. He grew up in Argentina and speaks fluent Spanish and French.


Vice-Chair WA - Steve Hall

Individual Member

Email - steve.hall@alabc.com.au

Perth-based experienced project manager, mine manager and general manager with tertiary qualifications in Engineering; holds an MBA qualification from Monash University.
Also an active member of;                                                                                                                                                                                
  • Australian Institute of Mining & Metallurgy (AusIMM)
  • West Australian Mining Club (WAMC)
  • Asset Management Council (AM Council)
  • Institute of Quarrying Australia (IQA)
Working in Chile from 1989-1996 and 2002-03, Mr Hall speaks fluent Spanish and has travelled extensively throughout the Americas developing successful business in Chile, Perú, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Uruguay, Suriname, Guyana and Mexico for several Australian-owned companies in the mining equipment, technology & services (METS) sector.
Has been closely involved with ALABC activities since 1990, and serves on the Board of Directors of the mining equipment technology & services export association Austmine since 2009.



Director - Marcelo Salas

Euromonitor International 

Marcelo Salas

Email - marcelo.salas@alabc.com.au


Marcelo is an international business development professional with more than 15 years’ experience as Senior Trade Commissioner for Chile in the USA and Australia. As a government official, Marcelo gained considerable experience in the design and implementation of growth strategies for companies looking to enter new markets. Between postings, he was Deputy Director of ProChile at Santiago HQ  and before, General Manager for International Marketing responsible for the first Chile Brand Campaign globally.  He has a deep understanding of the mining services and equipment industry and FMCG, and an extensive network of business contacts and market knowledge. He was part of the team that negotiated the FTA between Chile and Australia. In 2010 he moved to the private sector, taking up permanent residence in Australia and in 2012, he became an Australian citizen,

Marcelo is currently a Senior Partner at Euromonitor International in Sydney, a global consulting firm specialising in strategic intelligence for economies, markets, industries and  consumers. He  provides hands-on strategic business development and market research solutions to local and foreign government agencies and trade and industry associations looking at expanding their business internationally.  

He has been a member of the Board of ALABC since 2010. He was the President of the Australia-Chile Chamber of Commerce from 2010 to 2012 and currently is a member of the Board of the Chamber. Marcelo was the founder and investor of the first online retailer of Chilean and Argentinean wine in Australia, sold after three years. He was also the Country Manager for Australia and New Zealand of the TERSAINOX Group, a specialist stainless steel fabricator of complex equipment for the wine, transport and mining industries. 


Teasurer and Company Secretary - Paul Bradley

Commonwealth Bank

Email - paul.bradley@alabc.com.au

Finance Executive with more than 25 years experience, currently with Commonwealth Bank. Has served as a Director of ALABC since incorporation in 2001, having previously convened the Australia - Mexico Chamber of Commerce in 1994. Experience in Latin America gained by family business ties, including 10 years trading in consumer products and household goods. 




Director - Richard Andrews

Cutting Edges Equipment Parts Pty Limited

Email - richard.andrews@alabc.com.au

Owner and Chief Executive

Cutting Edges Equipment Parts Pty Limited
  • Australia’s largest aftermarket supplier of Equipment Parts for the mining and construction industry
  • National branch and distribution network throughout Australia
  • Local and international manufacturing and distribution
  • Manufacturing and distribution links to Latin America dating back to 1996

Past President
Australian LPGas Association (ALPGA)
Construction & Mining Equipment Association of Australia (CMEAA)

Proprietor and Managing Director

  • Tailored Solutions Group
  • International company providing IT solutions and strategies to large IT multinationals
  • Servicing a variety of industries from medium to large businesses specialising in special projects such as World Youth Day

NK Industries specialising in property acquisition and development


Vice-Chair NSW - Harold Lucero

Lucsan Capital Pty Ltd

Email - harold.lucero@alabc.com.au

Harold has over fifteen years of professional experience in the banking, stockbroking and information technology industries. Harold holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Computer Science from Kean University, New Jersey and a Masters Degree in Banking and Finance from The University of Technology, Sydney. Harold is the Founder, CEO, Director and Board Member of Lucsan Capital Pty Ltd, an innovative technology, consulting services and advisory group.  

Harold's qualifications and professional memberships include being a Practitioner Member - Master Stockbroking of the Stockbrokers Association of Australia (MSAA), a Member of Australian Institute of Company Directors (MAICD),a Senior Member of the Australian Computer Society (MACS), a Member of USA Dean’s List, and the US Who’s Who Among IT Professionals.” 


Vice Chair QLD - Tim McLennan ,  BSc (Hons), GAICD, FQA

Qutbluebox Pty Ltd

Tim McLennan

Email - timothy.mclennan@alabc.com.au

Over 25 years' experience in the resources, aerospace and energy sectors with an extensive career in successful innovation management and technology commercialisation, international collaboration, government and private sector relations with specific experience in Latin America, Asia, North America and Europe.

Current positions include CEO of QUTBluebox Pty Ltd, the commercialisation arm of QUT and Board member of AWRCOE Ltd.

Previous roles include senior management and executive commercial positions at the Commonwealth Industrial and Scientific Research Organisations (CSIRO), Executive Manager of the Queensland Centre for Advanced Technology; CEO of the International Energy Centre Ltd, Assistant Director of the AGCRC and Board member of the DFAT Council on Australia Latin America Relations (COALAR) (2012 - 2016); Austmine Limited (2006 - 2011) and the Australian Government Resource Technology Innovation Centre (2009).


Director - Michael Rowe

Resource Capital Funds

Email - michael.rowe@alabc.com.au

Qualification: B. A. (UNSW)

Michael has been working internationally for more than 20 years, and is now working for Resource Capital Funds, a mining-focused private equity firm with mandates to make investments exclusively in the mining sector across a diversified range of hard mineral commodities and geographic regions. 

It currently has Latin American investments in companies with assets in Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Chile and Guyana. Michael’s Latin American business experience also includes 7 years in senior marketing roles with Royal Dutch Shell conducting direct minerals marketing and trading business with steel companies in Brazil and Argentina, and sourcing minerals from companies in Colombia and mining and sourcing minerals in Venezuela. 

He has also held director positions with Shell in coal marketing (UK), LNG trading (NL), a coal gasification JV (China) and a coal to liquids JV (Aust.); was Vice Chair of a middle east unit of the Australian Chamber of Commerce; and a NFP director in Australia. 


Director - Brock Reynolds

TSG Consulting

Email - brock.reynolds@alabc.com.au

Brock has over ten years of professional experience in the mining and resources sector and is a specialist in the use of advanced analytical techniques to improve strategic decisions in the design and operation of mine, plant and logistics operations. He has worked extensively on projects and operations in Australia, South America and Africa. Brock is a Partner with TSG Consulting, a boutique consultancy that has been working in the Latin American mining sector since 2006 and has had an office in Santiago since 2012. Brock has an Honours degree in Chemical Engineering and a Master's degree in Mineral Economics from Curtin University. 


Vice-Chair VIC – John Woods 

Individual Member

Email – john.woods@alabc.com.au

John Woods currently consults on trade and investment matters involving Latin America.  

In addition he is he is lecturing and coordinating International Policymaking in Practice – a subject in the University of Melbourne’s Masters in International Relations program.  

John’s extensive skills and expertise on Latin America result from his service as Australia’s Ambassador to Peru from 2010 to 2014, where he re-opened the Australian Embassy in Lima. This was the culmination of John’s 42 year career with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).  He also served as Australia’s Ambassador to Venezuela from 2000 to 2003 and while in Caracas he was accredited to Colombia, Ecuador, Haiti and the Dominican Republic. He directed Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean Section in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) in Canberra between 2006 and 2010. Prior to his Ambassadorial postings, John served in New Delhi, London, Cairo and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia and held several director’s roles while in Canberra. 

Promoting stronger trade and investment links is critical in building Australia’s relationship with Latin America.  Hence assisting Australian business in the region formed a large part of John’s successful work in his Ambassadorial postings and in his responsibilities in Canberra.  He worked closely with his Austrade colleagues to facilitate a doubling in Australia’s commercial presence in Peru.  He was also a member of the Australian team that negotiated the Australia-Chile Free Trade Agreement.  Over the last fifteen years, he has consistently been a strong advocate for greater Australian corporate engagement with Latin America and, as such, has strongly supported the Australia Latin America Business Council (ALABC) in its important work. He is very well equipped to continue to promote and to assist Australian business with Latin America and is delighted to be able to do this as ALABC’s Vice-Chair for Victoria.

John is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and is on the Council of the Australian Institute of International Affairs in Victoria.

John speaks Spanish.  He holds a First Class Honours degree in Government from Sydney University and a Bachelor’s in Economics from the ANU. 


Director - Kate Bennett


Individual Membership

Email - kate.bennett@alabc.com.au

Kate is an independent sustainable development consultant and Managing Director of Somos21, a not-for-profit organisation inspiring action and collaboration between young Australian and Latin American professionals. An individual member of ALABC since 2011, Kate joined the Board in 2015 to promote partnerships for sustainable development between the two regions and to enhance the profile of ALABC within the “young professional” demographic.       


Currently undertaking her MBA at University of Sydney Business School, Kate’s tertiary qualifications include Bachelor of International Studies (Languages: French/Spanish) with a focus on Latin American history and civilisation (UNSW) and a Master of International Affairs (Sustainable Development) with a focus on international development and corporate social responsibility (Sciences Po, Paris). 

Kate has worked with various ASX listed companies operating both in Australia and overseas to enhance their sustainability performance, and is now working to drive the synergies and cross-sectoral collaboration required to deliver transformative sustainable development outcomes globally. Kate also sits on the Board of Stop the Traffik Australia, Australia’s leading coalition movement in the fight against human trafficking.



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