About  >  Our Team

Executive leadership

IHEA’s executive team provides expert representation, support and service to our members.  All of our team are committed to building respect and recognition for independent higher education and supporting our members to be leaders in best practice and quality.  

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Dr Peter Hendy

IHEA Chief Executive Officer

Peter is an economist and public policy expert with extensive leadership experience in the private and public sectors. Peter served as an MP and Assistant Minister in the Commonwealth Government, and is a former CEO of the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Peter has experience in education, having been chief of staff to a federal education minister, and a senior adviser to the Prime Minister on training and skills development.

Peter has also been a member of the audit board for a major review of the Australian University Qualities Agency, the forerunner of the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA). He was also a member of the CEOs committee of the former Australian National Training Authority; a member of a national review undertaken by the Training and Technical Education Advisory Committee; and a member of the Business and Industry Higher Education Council. He has also served on the advisory committee of the former Australian Education International.

Scott Clayton

IHEA Operations Manager

Scott has extensive experience in business operations and has held roles in a number of industries including management consulting, IT, finance and HR.

Scott also understands the unique concerns of the independent higher education sector, having worked as Chief Operations Officer for an independent provider. Scott’s sound knowledge of HR policies and procedures, financial management and business administration has enabled him to bring innovative and efficient systems to IHEA’s operations.

Dr Jerry Nockles

IHEA Deputy Chief Executive Officer

Jerry has extensive experience in membership engagement, stakeholder management, and government and public relations.

A military career, a doctorate in political science and international relations, service as a ministerial Chief of Staff, and senior managerial roles with Australia's largest NGO and within the United Nations organisation give him a critical edge in leadership, analysis, public policy formulation, communication, and advocacy.

A forthright thinker of mature judgment, Jerry is ideally placed to develop and advance IHEA’s member engagement and participation.

Dr James Hart

IHEA Policy and Research Manager

James has extensive experience in higher education policy and research having worked for the last nine years at the Australian Government Department of Education and Training, and prior to that, Department of Industry, Science and Resources.

Within his career at the Department of Education and Training, James has provided leadership as Acting Deputy Secretary for Skills and Training as well as in a number of First Assistant Secretary roles, including higher education, research and economics, strategic policy and data analytics.

James also played a key role in the development of the inaugural international education strategy.

At the Department of Industry, Science and Resources, James led the consolidation and streamlining of Australian Government skills’ programs and led tertiary infrastructure policy and programs.