Donna Neilson

Training Consultant

Donna Neilson

About Donna

Donna Neilson brings three decades of working in Local Government to Peak. With a background in law and many years as a councillor, she has an in depth knowledge of the legislation and workings of councils. As a former executive of numerous Boards, Donna has a wealth of experience in governance and uses a down to earth approach to help students understand their responsibilities.

Core Capability

  • 30 years’ experience in Local Government
  • Experienced trainer/facilitator and assessor
  • Excellent working knowledge of relevant legislation
  • A thorough understanding of the needs of Queensland councils
  • Sound knowledge of governance and procedures within Councils and organisations.


  • Diploma of Local Government, Governance and Administration
  • Certificate IV TAE40116
  • Solicitor

Key Experience

30 years’ experience in the Local Government sector

Extensive strategic planning experience

Gained through involvement in numerous Corporate Plans, Community Plans, Operational Plans and Planning Schemes and active member of Regional Planning Advisory Committee (RPAC).

19 years as a councillor

For a regional council, including 10 years as chair of Planning and Development Committee and 4 years as chair of Governance and Finance Committee.

Former member LGAQ Policy Executive

Former LGAQ representative on:
Queensland Heritage Council
Coastal Protection Advisory Council
Wide Bay Burnett Regional Organisation of Councils (WBBROC).
Chair of Learning and Development Strategies Group.

Council Represent

Represented Cooloola Shire council on Regional Planning Advisory Committee (RPAC)

Extensive community engagement and governance experience as

Former Deputy Chair Regional Development Australia Wide Bay Burnett (RDAWBB) and
Deputy Chair Wide Bay Burnett Area Consultative Committee (WBBACC) 1994-2014

Understanding of issues for Councils, Councillors and staff having worked with many Councils throughout Queensland and interstate.

Experienced Local Government Trainer-Advisor and facilitator