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Elected Members

Profile provided by individual Elected Members

Shire of Northam Elected Councillors
Councillor Details Portrait

President C R (Chris) Antonio 

Term: 2027

Contact Details:
PO Box 373
Mobile: 0429 220 210
Email: [email protected]


Background: I grew up on our family farm at Southern Brook and have always been involved in our family farming business and am currently working in partnership with my brother and our families. I have over 20 years of experience in Agribusiness Finance, having worked with a major Australian Bank as a specialist.  Additionally, I work as a Sessional University Lecturer, specialising in Agribusiness Business Planning and risk management.

Areas of interest in Council: I am keen to see the Shire of Northam continue on its journey of growth and development. There are also many talented people and businesses within all parts of the Shire, and, where possible, I will always assist them in achieving their goals. This has been a continuing rewarding part of both my work and community involvement. Areas of focus currently include Housing, Health Services and Economic Development.

Professions/Occupations: I have a background in Agribusiness Finance, Risk Management and Farm Business Succession / Transition Planning. I have worked for 8 years as an industry specialist lecturer, previously at Muresk Campus for the Charles Sturt University Bachelor of Agribusiness Management Degree and continuing to work directly with Charles Sturt University. I also undertake Sessional Lecturing in Agribusiness Business Planning at Curtin University. I have a Bachelor of Business (Agribusiness), am a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, and hold Diplomas, or Graduate Diplomas in Local Government, Financial Planning, and Business Frontline Management.

Committee of Council Memberships: Audit & Risk Management Committee, Chief Executive Officer Review Committee, Community Grants Assessment Committee.

Council Delegate on Community Based and External Committees: I am the nominated chairperson on the Local Emergency Management Committee and am on the Nyoongar Cultural Advisory Group (proxy). I am delegate to the Local Health Advisory Committee and am delegate to the Western Australian Regional Capitals Alliance. I am a Council Delegate on AROC (Avon Regional Councils), am a representative to the Avon-Midland Zone of Councils. As part of the Avon-Midland Zone of Councils, I am the current Chairperson, and delegate on the WALGA State Council. As part of the WALGA State Council, I am of the finance committee and am the State Road Funds and State Road Safety Committee to Local Government representatives and, as part of the Avon-Midland Zone, I have been appointed to the Wheatbelt District Leadership Group.

Community Services/Memberships: I have been involved in a number of community organisations in the past, most recently with the Southern Brook Volunteer Fire Brigade and the Northam Hockey Association and serve on community boards including Directions and Avon Community Development Foundation. I am Patron for the Northam Motorsport Festival and co-patron for the Northam Men’s Shed. I am a member of Avon Valley Arts Society, Northam Theatre Group, a number of the Regional Progress Associations, and attend many group’s activities as part of my role as Shire President.

Previous Council Service: After serving the community for eight years as a Councillor, and the past six years as President, I was popularly elected in 2023 as President for the next 4 years.

I remain passionate about seeing the Northam Shire and the greater region grow. I look forward to continuing to work with the community and to promote and highlight all that we achieve together on our journey forward.

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Cr A J (Attila) Mencshelyi 

Deputy Shire President

Ward: Central

Term: 2025


Contact Details:

PO Box 488


Mobile: 0407 773 977

Email: [email protected]


Background: Born and raised in Merredin. Having  worked extensively in the Wheatbelt for 22 years and the Goldfields for 16 years before moving to Northam in 2006. Have lived in Bakers Hill for the last 6 years. I am married and have 4 children and 10 grandchildren. 

Areas of Interest in Council: I am interested in continued economic growth and development within the Northam Shire - I firmly believe that being within the peri-urban arc of Perth makes the Shire a desirable country location with a tree-change lifestyle. I endeavour to work for and ensure the care, safety and welfare of all community members, the good governance of the Shire, working collaboratively and cohesively with fellow councillors and staff for the provision of excellent services and facilities in all Shire towns and localities, within rating and budget parameters.

Professions/Occupations: Following 5 years with the Public Works Department Country Areas Water Supply I moved to the State Housing Commission where after 10 years I became the Regional Manager with the Housing Department  for 38 years, which was  interspersed with executive roles in Land and Housing Development, Maintenance, and Service Delivery directorates within our housing corporate team. Throughout my career I developed a strong affinity with community in the rural ,mining and local government sectors.

Committee of Council Membership: Audit & Risk Management Committee, Chief Executive Officer Review Committee, Community Grants Assessment Committee, Community Safety Committee and Bush Fire Advisory Committee. 

Council Delegate on Community Based and External Committees: Nyoongar Cultural Advisory Group, Avon Midland Zone of WALGA (Proxy), Avon Sub-Regional Road Group (Proxy) and Western Australian Regional Capital Alliance (Proxy). 

Community Service/Memberships: Chairperson of Avon Community Services, Board member of  Wheatbelt Community Legal Centre and Share and Care Community services (Vice President), formerly on the boards of the Goldfields and Wheatbelt Independent Family Support Associations. Previously the deputy chair of the Goldfields District Leadership Group and chair of the Wheatbelt District Leadership Group linking Community and Government agencies on Community issues.

Previous Council Service: I have previously served as a City of Kalgoorlie/Boulder councillor for 6 years. Currently in my seventh year as councillor for the Central Ward, and acutely cognisant of responsibility for representing the whole of the Northam Shire Community.

Cr M P (Michael) Ryan
Ward: East
Term: 2025

Contact Details:
61 Chidlow Street
NORTHAM   WA   6401
Mobile: 0429 960 594
Email: [email protected] 

Background: My family and I moved to Northam in July 2004 and purchased our home in Northam in 2005. I was a Police Officer for nearly twenty years with the majority of my policing career being spent in the Wheatbelt Region. I left the WA Police in 2014 to pursue a career in the legal profession, serving two and half years in the Parliament of Western Australia as an Advisory Officer for the Legislative Council. I commenced my small legal practice in Northam in 2016 and I am community focused.

Areas of Interest in Council: Commerce, water and technology are my areas of interest as I would like to see the Shire of Northam grow in these areas - water management in particular has been a historical issue for us, so it would be great for the Shire to develop some long-term solutions for this issue.

Professions/Occupations: Barrister/solicitor and a Principal of a firm in Northam.

Committee Membership: Audit & Risk Management Committee, Chief Executive Officer Review Committee, Local Emergency Management Committee (proxy) and Nyoongar Cultural Advisory Group.

Community Service/Membership: Member of the Chamber of Commerce and the RSL. 

Previous Council Service: Previously served as a Councillor for the Shire of Merredin.

Cr J E G Williams

Ward: East
Term: 2027

Contact Details:

225 Carlin Road (PO Box 66)


Phone: (08) 9574 1180

Mobile: 0419 194 161
Email: [email protected]

Background: Born in Singapore, moved to Australia at age 2, lived in Vic, NSW, NT and metro Perth before moving to Bakers Hill in 1995. Married with 7 children and 5 (so far) grandchildren.

Areas of Interest in Council: Improving communication/consultation between Shire and community; ensuring any developments benefit our residents and do not adversely affect the Shire environmentally, aesthetically or economically; advocating for equitable access to facilities and services across the Shire.

Professions/Occupations: Part-time bookkeeper for husband’s (Wundowie based) small business.  

Committee Membership: Chief Executive Officer Review Committee, Community Safety Committee (Chair), Wheatbelt Joint Development Assessment Panel.

Community Service/Memberships: Northam Senior High School Board, Bakers Hill Progress and Recreation Association, Clackline Progress Association, Spencers Brook Progress Association and Bakers Hill Primary School Council. Previously on school/community boards and P&C Associations.

Previous Council Service: Elected to council in 2011, Deputy President from 2019 to 2021.

Cr D A (Des) Hughes
Ward: East
Term: 2025

Contact Details:
297 Duke Street
Phone: (08) 9622 2562
Email: [email protected] 

Background: Born in Northam and raised on a farm at Wongamine. Lived in Toodyay for seven years, where I was employed by Industrial  Extracts; employed here firstly as a Leading Hand operator and on qualifying for my First Class Engine Drivers Cert. Shift Boss. In 1972, I move to Pinjarra, where I worked for Alcoa in the Power House control room. In late 1975 I moved back to Northam after gaining a position with Weston Milling where I worked for eight years as Head Miller and twenty four years as Mill Manager.

Areas of Interest in Council: I’m very keen to see Northam and the Shire as a whole, to keep on developing, with new businesses coming into our community along with the associated employment. But I’m adamant that this development is not to be at the expense of our heritage buildings. I’m also very keen on getting value for money.

Professions/Occupations: First Class Steam and Diesel Engine Drivers Cert. (stationary), Flour Mill Operative and Mill Manager Cert. (City and Guilds of London).

Committee of Council Memberships: Community Grants Assessment Committee.

Council Delegate on Community Based and External Committees: Development Assessment Panel (proxy), Avon Valley Art Society (AVAS) and Northam Memorial Hall Board.

Community Service/Memberships: Member of the West Northam Primary School Board, Northam Residential College Linc Committee, Northam Ag. Society and Avon Valley Arts Society.

Previous Council Service: Two years Town of Northam and ten years Shire of Northam.

Cr L C (Lisa) Biglin
Ward: West
Term: 2025

Contact Details:

PO Box 476 Wundowie WA 6560

Phone: 0477 402 654

Email: [email protected] 


Background: I grew up in Hyden and went to a private boarding school in Perth. I worked for what was then United Construction now UGL for 23 years in various roles. During my time at UGL I also spent 6 years as employers’ representative on the WA Workcover Board. The last 10 years was as Group Manager Health Services. Leaving UGL my husband and I purchased the IGA in Wundowie and have owned it for 10 years. We have an adult son.

Areas of Interest in Council: I’m keen to support the Northam Shire implement its commitment to the communities and in line with the Northam Shire Plan and the Wundowie/Bakers Hill requirements within this plan to ensure that these are at the forefront of the council agenda. I will advocate for better facilities within the community and work closely with the law enforcement to assist in implementing crime preventative initiatives and provide close engagement with the businesses, sporting bodies and associations to ensure the town and the whole community is well represented on the Shire with their concerns and not any vested interest.

Professions/Occupations: Graduate Certificate in Workers Compensation – Curtin University.

Committee of Council Memberships: Community Grants Assessment Committee, Chief Executive Officer Review & Selection Committee. 

Council Delegate on Community Based and External Committees: Avon Sub-Regional Road Group.

Community Service/Memberships: Wundowie Progress Association - Secretary/Treasurer.

Previous Council Service: None.

Cr C M (Chris) Poulton
Ward: East
Term: 2027

Contact Details:
9 Yates Street
Mobile: 0402 924 630
Email: [email protected]

Background: I grew up in Bakers Hill, where we still have our family farm and where my parents ran other businesses in town. I went to university at Murdoch in Perth after which I moved to Sydney for five years where I studied Paediatric Gut Health and worked at UNSW and SCH.

Areas of interest in Council: I aim to steer our Shire towards improving our way of life in the outer wards and continue to improve productivity in the Northam Town Centre, without compromising our lifestyle. This includes, protecting the Kep-Track and our significant heritage places. Improving our transport and freight issues which includes roads and road safety. It is my aim to facilitate improvements, without compromising our people, environment and the communities way of life. 

Professions/Occupations: I have a background in Science and Research, with a PhD in Paediatrics. I’ve worked as a Research Scientist for several years which has provided me with the skills to evaluate issues critically. I moved back to the Northam Shire to settle down in the one place that I have always called home.

Committee of Council Memberships: None.

Council Delegate on Community Based and External Committees: Northam Heritage Forum, Northam Army Camp Heritage Association, Local Health Advisory Group and Avon Regional Organisation of Councils (AROC).

Community Service/Memberships: None.

Previous Council Service: None.

Cr M I (Maria) Girak
Ward: East
Term: 2027

Contact Details:
16 Gordon Street
Mobile: 0400 245 681
Email: [email protected]

Background: Grew up in socialist Hungary, migrated to Australia and settled in Northam 35 years ago. I raised my children and managed several family businesses in Northam for 14 years prior to gaining employment at TAFE.

Areas of Interest in Council: I am keen to work on projects to attract investments, promote small business development, and tourism resulting in jobs. I would like to contribute to improving public and road safety, seniors, youth and childcare services and facilities and promoting community wellbeing. I am passionate about the Shire's environment, heritage, culture, and the arts.

Professions/Occupations: My qualifications include a Master of Professional Education and Training, Diploma in Management, Business and IT Digital Media, Certificate IV in Training and Assessment. Since 2003 I have been working at Central Regional TAFE in Northam as an IT and business lecturer, Acting Business Development Manager, Acting Principal Lecturer and currently as Head of Programs.

Committee of Council Memberships: Bush Fire Advisory Committee and the Audit and Risk Management Committee.

Council Delegate on Community Based and External Committees: Currently delegate of the Wheatbelt Joint Development Assessment Panel, Northam Army Camp Heritage Association (proxy), Avon Valley Art Society (proxy).

Community Service / Memberships: Member of the Avon Valley Art Society, Northam Army Camp Heritage Association.

Previous Council Service: Shire of Northam Elected Member since 2019.

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Cr H (Hayden) Appleton

Ward: East

Term: 2025


Contact Details:

11 East Street

NORTHAM   WA   6401

Email: [email protected] 

Mobile: 0448 870 770

Background: I was born in Kalamunda but lived in Southern cross until the age of 12. I then lived in a number of other rural towns until I settled in Northam at the age of 16. I now consider Northam home. In that I gotten married, had four children and bought a house here in Northam.

Areas of interest in Council: Council for me has always been about doing what in best for the community as a whole. I pride myself on being well informed on the issues the effect our community and offering alternative motions to the shire and council where the recommendation may not necessarily be what is best for the community.

Professions/Occupations: In my time in Northam I have worked for a number of different retail businesses and at present am the manager of a local supermarket. These businesses service large areas of not just the Shire but the Wheatbelt as a whole. Through my time in these businesses I have also learnt the fundamentals of leadership. Being able to lead but also train my staff to become leaders in their own right. It has been a very fulfilling Job.

Committee of Council Memberships: Audit and Risk Management Committee and Community Grants Assessment Committee.

Council Delegate on Community Based and External Committees: Northam Heritage Form (NHF).

Community Service / Memberships: None.

Previous Council Service: None.

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