Presidents and Mayors of Hornsby Shire

Since the first councillors were elected in 1906, there have been 29 presidents and mayors who have overseen Hornsby Shire Council.

Originally presidents and mayors were elected each year by a majority of councillors, but in 2004 the residents of Hornsby Shire voted to have a popularly elected mayor with a four-year term.

The title was changed from president to mayor in 1993.

John Charles Hunt

John Charles Hunt (1856–1930), an orchardist, was Shire President of the first elected Hornsby Shire Council in 1906. He served as a councillor until 1908 and was the Liberal member of parliament for Sherbrook until 1920.

President Dec 1906 – Oct 1907

William Mark Nixon

William Mark Nixon, an architect, was an inaugural Hornsby Shire Councillor (1906-11) and designed the Council Chambers and St Peters Church in Hornsby.

President Oct 1907 – Dec 1909

Lord Livingstone Ramsay

Lord Livingstone Ramsay (1860-1924), an architect, was a Hornsby Shire Councillor 1908-22.

President Dec 1909 – Dec 1913

John Adam Schwebel

John Adam Schwebel (d.1935), the son of an Austrian immigrant, was a Glenorie orchardist who served on Hornsby Shire Council 1908-1917.

President, Dec 1913 – Dec 1915

Paul A James

Paul A James (d.1934), a prominent businessman with a sawmill in Jersey Street, was a councillor 1914-1934. He was Shire President 12 times between 1916 and 1931.

President Dec 1915-Dec 1920; Dec 1921-Dec 1923; Dec 1924-Dec 1927; Dec 1928-Dec 1931

Richard Allen

Richard Allen, a conveyancer from Normanhurst who served on Council from 1920 to 1925. He focussed on improving sporting facilities and was responsible for the establishment of Normanhurst Park.

President Dec 1923 – Dec 1924

Frank Chapman

Frank Chapman, a surveyor, was a councillor for 22 years between 1915 and 1937. Chapman Avenue, Beecroft, was named after him.

President Dec 1920–Dec 1921; Dec 1927–Dec 1928

Thomas Ernest Rofe

Thomas Ernest Rofe (1869-1945), a solicitor, was a councillor 1927-44. He was a prominent philanthropist and was the founding patron of Hornsby Hospital.

President Dec 1931 – Dec 1932

Sidney Albert Storey

Sydney Albert Storey (1896-1966) was a councillor 1932-66 and Liberal MP for the state seat of Hornsby 1941-62. Storey Park is named after him.

President Dec 1932-Dec 1934; Dec 1946-Dec 1950

Percy Cooper Law

Percy Cooper Law (1870-1957) was a councillor 1925-48. He was known as the “father of good footpaths” for spearheading the use of unemployed workers to lay pavements during the Great Depression.

President Dec 1934-Dec 1935

Charles H

Charles H. Somerville (1885–1967), who became managing director of Somerville’s Produce Store in 1937, served a total of 33 years on Council and 10 of those as president.

President Dec 1935-Dec 1942; Dec 1950-Dec 1953

George H Vaughan

George H Vaughan, whose father had been a councillor before him, was a councillor from 1937 to 1950. As Shire President during the Second World War, he led fundraising efforts to support the troops.

President Dec 1942 – Dec 1946

Joseph Lindsay Green

Joseph Lindsay ('Lin') Green, lived in Epping and was the founder of Greenseas canned fish company. His time on Council was brief due to international business commitments.

President Dec 1955 – Dec 1956

Harold George Headen

Harold George Headen, a city warehouseman, was a councillor between 1948 and 1962 (discontinuously). Headen Park is named after him.

President Dec 1953-Dec 1955; Dec 1956- Dec 1960

Maxwell Stanley Ruddock

Maxwell Stanley Ruddock (1914-1976), an accountant, was a councillor 1953-65 and Liberal member MLA for the Hills 1962-76. His son Phillip Ruddock represents the Berowra federal electorate.

President Dec 1960 – Dec 1961


Donald Tulloch, a businessman from Epping, was elected to Council in 1959 supported by the Epping Progress Association. He brought an entrepreneurial approach to the challenges of a rapidly growing population.

President Dec 1961 – Dec 1967

Gordon Spowart Curby

Gordon Spowart Curby (d.2007) was a councillor from 1965 to 1987. During World War 2, he served in the Royal Australian Air Force. He was instrumental in establishing Lisgar Gardens as a part of Council’s public heritage.

President Dec 1967-Sept 1972; Sept 1977–Sept 1978; Sept 1986–Sept 1987

Donald Evans

Donald Evans, an engineer who lived in Beecroft, served on the Council from 1965 to 1983 and was a driving force behind the construction of the Comenarra Parkway and the Northgate Shopping Centre.

President Sept 1972-Sept 1977; Sept 1978-Sept 1983

Ronald James Payne

Ronald James Payne, a naval officer, and councillor from 1968 to 1991. He was instrumental in establishing sporting and recreational facilities within the shire. After he retired, he became Chairman of the Fagan park Committee.

President Sept 1983-1986; Sept 1988-1989; Sept 1992-1993; Sept 1995-1996

Lindsey Browne

Lindsey Brown, a Normanhurst engineer with extensive experience in local government, served on Council from 1987 to 1991.

President Sept 1987 – Sept 1988

Brian Carey

Brian Carey, a Glenorie resident with a background in journalism and public relations, was elected to Council in 1987 under the banner of the Hornsby District Residents and Ratepayers Association.

President Sept 1989 – Sept 1990

Nan Horne

Nan Horne, a teacher until her retirement in 1980, served on Council from 1987 to 2008. Nan Horne has lived in Cherrybrook since 1962.

President Sept 1990 – Sept 1992

Steven Pringle

Steven Pringle, a naval officer, became Hornsby Shire’s first Mayor when the title was changed in 1993. He served on Council from 1987 to 2004 and then in State Parliament as member for Hawkesbury.

Mayor Sept 1998–Sept 1999; Sept 2001-2002

Chris Meany

Chris Meany, a Thornleigh vet, served on Council 1977-80 and 1991-95. He was actively involved in tourism and environmental issues.

Mayor Sept 1993 – Sept 1994

Mick Gallagher

Mick Gallagher, a Vietnam War veteran, served on Council from 1991 to 1995. He is well known as a local activist and entertainer and was re-elected to Council in 2012.

Mayor Sept 1994 – Sept 1995

John Muirhead

John Muirhead, a resident of Berowra, served on Council from 1995 to 2004 and was elected mayor five times.

Mayor Sept 1996-Sept 1998; Sept 2000–Sept 2001; Sept 2002-Mar 2004

Robert Browne

Robert Browne, a businessman with a background in banking and accountancy, served on Council from 1999 to 2004 and was re-elected in February 2007.

Mayor Sept 1999 – Sept 2000

Nick Berman

Nick Berman, a real estate agent, became the first popularly elected Mayor in 2004, having served on Council since 1999. A keen sportsman, he previously worked as a Federal electorate officer.

Mayor Mar 2004 – Sept 2012

Steve Russell

Steve Russell, who owned his own business and managed a trucking company, served on Council from 1999 to 2004 and 2008 to 2017.

Mayor 2012 - Sept 2017

Philip Ruddock

Philip Ruddock AO, a Federal Liberal member of the House of Representatives from 1973 to 2016. He was both the Father of the House and the Father of the Parliament from 1998 to his retirement. Philip served continuously in federal cabinet during the Howard Government, as Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs from 1996 to 2003, and then Attorney-General from 2003 to 2007.

Mayor 2017 - Present