Surfing Queensland was established in 1964 and since this time has developed into a thriving sporting association committed to the development of this great sport.  Surfing Queensland is the recognised not-for-profit peak State body of a National Association entrusted and committed to the development of the sport of surfing and the education of the general public on surf safety and surf survival.


Julian Blanchard


Julian is a senior lawyer with expertise across a range of corporate, governance, commercial, contractual and intellectual property matters. He runs a boutique commercial law firm, Blanchard Legal based in Burleigh. He was previously the general counsel of Billabong and prior to that a lawyer at Allens Arthur Robinson in Sydney and an academic lecturing in corporate law. He holds a bachelors law degree and Ph.D. He has previously chaired advisory boards for Australian founded, international brands One Teaspoon and Armadillo. Julian is an avid surfer and has been for 40+ years. He is part of the regular early morning crew out at Burleigh point. He was previously a member of boardriders clubs in South Australia, where he grew up, but recent competitive surfing has been limited to participating in the annual Burleigh single fin event.

Jeff Frazer

Jeff is a former Partner of KPMG and has over twenty years experience in accounting, finance and compliance. His focus is on audit and advisory service delivery, but with the nature of clients that Jeff works with, he has a broad range of skills including valuations, tax and accounting, financial reporting and transaction based engagements. Prior to joining KPMG, Jeff worked in the financial markets working on the Sydney Futures Exchange for Macquarie Bank Limited. Jeff sits on the Boards of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (Gold Coast); and The Gold Coast Hospital Foundation. Jeff is a keen surfer and has travelled extensively surfing in Europe, the middle east, Indonesia and Hawaii.

Luke Mckenzie

Luke has been a board member of Surfing Queensland since 2009 and was Chairperson from 2016 until June 2024. Professionally, Luke has been a Director at Balmain for over 20 years and manages its Queensland operations. Balmain is Australia’s leading non-bank commercial property debt organisation. Balmain originates over $2.5b of commercial loans annually, and has approximately $7b in funds under management on behalf of private investors, SMSF’s and some of the world’s largest financial institutions. Luke has postgraduate qualifications in Applied Finance and Investment, is an authorised Credit Representative of Balmain and is Fellow of FINSIA.

Erin Tanner

Erin Tanner is a lawyer with experience working with businesses of all sizes.  Erin works primarily on commercial contracts and transactions, strategic advice, corporate restructuring, and privacy law, advising clients in a wide range of industries including sports, major events and tourism.  Erin has also worked with several major charities and not-for-profits, identifying the right corporate and tax structures to help them achieve their goals and make the most of their finances in a difficult regulatory environment. With experience working both as an external advisor, and as part of an in-house legal and commercial team, Erin is known for being easy to work with and can fit well into any team. Coming from the landlocked ACT, Erin is still making up for years of lost beach time and tries to fit in a surf or surf trip away whenever she can.

Paul Peterson

Paul comes from a retail background in the motor industry.  Managing Director of a motorcycle group that employed 140 plus staff before putting a deal together with a private equity group to exit a majority of commercial locations holding on to just 1 and allow for partial retirement.  He was appointed to the Motor Trades Association Queensland board in 2005 and has chaired the organisation since 2016.  He also sits on the National MTAA board and the Queensland MTAI board- Queensland’s largest trainer of motor industry apprentices. Paul has been the president of the Noosa Boardriders Club for the past 9 years and enjoys surfing the east coast and overseas with his 4 sons ( although he now ends up filming more than surfing).


Adam Yates

Chief Executive Officer

Surfing Queensland’s Board of Directors appointed Adam Chief Executive Officer of the organisation in 2014. Prior to commencing as CEO, Adam was an integral component of the management structure managing multi-million dollar event budgets and the staging of over 200 events throughout his tenure as Surfing Queensland’s Events Manager. Adam has over 15 years of experience in sport management and surfing industries. His commitment and thorough knowledge of the organisation see Adam drive and deliver the commercial and strategic priorities of the organisation. Adam has a demonstrated track record to navigate through complex issues. Prioritising, managing and delivering outcomes that fulfil the commercial and strategic priorities, as well as having an in-depth understanding of corporate governance is testament to Adam’s success.

Alan Biggs

General Manager

During the last 20 years Alan has held General Manager and CFO roles across a diverse range of industries as well as 3 years in Local Government as the CEO for the Shire of Shark Bay. (Alan was the first person in Western Australia to be appointed the Chief Executive Officer of a Local Government from private enterprise, which required Ministerial Approval). His experience spans across many industries and his leadership skills come from managing companies with turnover in excess of $100 million and significant staff levels (450). Alan’s formal qualifications (3) include a Bachelor of Commerce (Accountancy), Graduate Diploma in Marketing and a Diploma in Technical Analysis.

Shanice Ryder

Business Support Manager

Originally from Margaret River, Western Australia, Shanice has previously worked within the surfing industry before her move to Queensland. Since moving east, Shanice has worked within the finance sector as an administrator and an executive assistant, but joined the Surfing Queensland team 3 years ago in order to pursue her passion within the surf industry. Shanice has an immense love for being outdoors and soaking up everything the Queensland lifestyle has to offer.

Elliot Dempster

Head of Operations

Elliot grew up in Northern NSW as a keen surfer before following his dreams and travelling the world where he worked in varied hospitality and tourism roles such as ski mountain operations, hotel management and as a sailing instructor. Elliot’s passion for surfing and community sport eventually led him back to South East Queensland to complete a Bachelor of Sport Management and Marketing, ultimately landing him in his dream role as Surfing Queensland’s Head of Events. Elliot has thoroughly developed his event management and coordination skills, having delivered multiple world class major surfing events since coming on board as a highly valued team member.


Manuel Calvo Sastre

Events Coordinator

Born and raised in Mar del Plata, Argentina, Manuel moved to Gold Coast to complete a Master of Sport Management at Bond University. After completing a Bachelor in Business Administration and working in varied corporations, he decided to redirect his professional career into the sports world. Manuel’s passion for surfing motivated him to knock on Surfing Queensland’s door for his Professional Internship. Three months later he is stoked to be part of the team as the Sport Administrator, a dream position that combines his love for surfing, with his studies and professional experience.

Keanu Chapman

Events & Communications Coordinator

Growing up in Coffs Harbour, NSW, Keanu developed a keen interest in surfing and was involved in Christian Surfers Coffs Harbour and volunteered with the Disabled Surfers Association. He moved to the Gold Coast to commence a Bachelor of Communications and Journalism at Griffith University. When Keanu graduated, he was asked to join the Surfing Queensland team and take his professional practice to the next level. Combining his passion for surfing and in-depth knowledge in communications, he is undoubtedly an integral member of the team.