Councillor Profiles Councillor Profiles

Councillors

Back row (left to right): Cr Helen Brieschke, Cr Otis Ogg, Cr Bob WhalleyCr Sean ChoatCr Cheryl Gaedtke
Front row (left to right): Cr Dan HallMayor Graeme Lehmann

MAYOR

Mayor Graeme Lehmann
Mayor Graeme Lehmann
M 0419 799 770
glehmann@somerset.qld.gov.au

Graeme was born and raised in the Somerset region and has always called this his home. He lives with his wife Judy at Prenzlau and together they have three daughters and many grandchildren.

Graeme is passionate about representing the interests of the community and first became a Councillor in 1994. A decade after being in local government, Graeme was elected Mayor of the region. He has proudly served in local government for over two decades.

Graeme left high school early to pursue his love of cars and successfully completed an apprenticeship as a mechanic soon after. Graeme is a qualified motor mechanic and owned and operated a business specialising in repairing and restoring vehicles at Tarampa for many years. He is an avid Holden supporter and has raced at speedway and won several titles.

Graeme has strong connections to the community.

Committees:
Tourism Advisory Committee
Traffic Safety Advisory Committee
Esk Radio Active Waste Advisory Committee
Local Disaster Management Group
SEQ Catchments
Somerset Regional Recovery Group
Blacksnake Creek Committee
UQ Advisory Group
Audit Committee
Council of Mayors SEQ


DEPUTY MAYOR

Cr Dan Hall
Cr Dan Hall
Deputy Mayor

M 0438 154 837
dhall@somerset.qld.gov.au

Dan has worked in local government for more than three decades and has strong ties to the region. He calls Kilcoy home with his wife Rhondda and loves working on the land.

He has a passion for serving the Somerset region and first became a Councillor in 2008 after working as a foreman and overseer in local government for almost 30 years.

Dan has extensive knowledge of transport, rural and sales' industries as well as road construction. He enjoys campdrafting, fishing and playing golf.

Dan is a life member of the Campdraft Association and a beef producer in Somerset.

Committees:
Somerset Council Community Support Advisory Committee
Audit Committee
Somerset Regional Recovery Group
Traffic Safety Advisory Committee
Pest Management Committee
Regional Road Group “Road Alliance” Committee
Rural Fire Brigade Coordination Committee and Somerset Rural Fire Brigade Local Area Finance Committee
Esk Racecourse Advisory Committee
Kilcoy Airfield Board of Management Committee
Kilcoy Country Care
Fernvale Hall and Col Powell Park Overall Management Committee
Infrastructure Recovery Sub-Group
Brisbane Valley Heritage Trail Group
Council of Mayors – Infrastructure and Planning Committee


COUNCILLORS

Cr Helen Brieschke 
Cr Helen Brieschke
M 0438 149 954
hbrieschke@somerset.qld.gov.au

Helen Brieschke first moved to the Somerset region in 1976 after experiencing Cyclone Tracey when living in Darwin as a child.

She has been heavily involved in the community since her teenage years and has held full-time employment at the Esk Co-Op and Esk Hospital.

Helen and husband David own and have operated a wholesale milk distribution business for almost three decades.

Helen was first elected as a Councillor in 2012 and has a strong commitment to the community with a keen interest in recreation, environment and the arts and believes Somerset is a great place to live, work and visit. 

Committees:
Tourism Advisory Committee
Traffic Safety Advisory Committee
Somerset Condensery Gallery Advisory Committee
Somerset Regional Recovery Group
Somerset Council Community Support Advisory Committee
Pest Management Committee
Infrastructure Recovery Sub-Group
Natural Environment Recovery Sub-Group
Kilcoy Chamber of Commerce and Community Inc
Council of Mayors – Waterways and Environment Committee


Cr Sean Choat 
Cr Sean Choat
M 0403 535 035
schoat@somerset.qld.gov.au
 

Sean Choat was first elected as a Councillor for SRC in 2016.

Prior to being elected to Council, his community service included various club committee positions and most notably he served as the state member for Ipswich West representing the interests of the community.

Sean lives at Glamorgan Vale with his wife Nicola and their three children.

Sean has interests including raising livestock, but he is best known for his love of poultry and racing pigeons. 

Sean has many years’ experience working in the vocational training sector and has undertaken studies in training and assessment, audit and business administration.

Sean is a strong advocate for the rights of the individual, small business and sustainable growth.

Committees:
Traffic Safety Advisory Committee

Healthy Waterways
Somerset Regional Recovery Group
Local Disaster Management Group
Pest Management Committee
Rural Fire Brigade Coordination Committee and Somerset Rural Fire Brigades Local Area Finance Committee
Human Social Recovery Sub-Group
Natural Environment Recovery Sub-Group
Blacksnake Creek Committee
Brisbane Valley Kilcoy Landcare Group
Fernvale Community Association
Lowood Community Action Group


Cr Cheryl Gaedtke 
Cr Cheryl Gaedtke
M 0428 408 227
cgaedtke@somerset.qld.gov.au 
 

Cheryl Gaedtke has more than three decades of local government experience and was appointed as a councillor in 2016.

Cheryl is a fourth generation resident of Somerset, and together with her husband John, calls Kilcoy home. 

In 2015 she received the Somerset Australia Day Citizen of the Year award for her involvement in various community groups and organisations across the region.

Cheryl is an avid horse rider and participates in various social and competitive horse riding events and has been a member of the Queensland Endurance Riders Association for more than a decade.

Cheryl is currently studying a Bachelor of Arts through the University of the Sunshine Coast.

Committees:
Traffic Safety Advisory Committee
Somerset Council Community Support Advisory Committee
Somerset Regional Recovery Group
Regional Arts Development Fund (RDAF) Committee
Kilcoy Showground Reserve Overall Management Advisory Committee
Human Social Recovery Sub-Group
Valley Kilcoy Landcare Group
Tourism Advisory Committee
Somerset Condensery Gallery Advisory Committee
Kilcoy Chamber of Commerce and Community Inc
UQ Community Advisory Group
Council of Mayors – Economic Development Committee
Brisbane Valley Heritage Trail Group


Cr Otis Ogg 
Cr Michael "Otis" Ogg
M 0457 128 000
mogg@somerset.qld.gov.au

Michael, or Otis as he is better known, was first elected as a Councillor in 2012.

He was raised in Lowood and owned and operated his own business, Oggs Department Store, for more than thirty years.

He is passionate about the region and is involved in many aspects of community life. Otis calls Wivenhoe Pocket his home and admits his favourite past time is musical theatre as well as his band, The Blithrin Roos. Otis is a member of the Brisbane Valley Sailing Club and is passionate about enhancing the liveability of Somerset and connecting residents with the region's waterways.

Otis is heavily involved with various aspects of community life in Somerset and is also a director of the Lowood and Fernvale Community Bank.

Committees:
Tourism Advisory Committee
Traffic Safety Advisory Committee
Somerset Regional Recovery Group
Regional Road Group “Road Alliance” Committee
Fernvale Hall and Col Powell Park Overall Management Committee
Local Disaster Management Group
Regional Arts Development Fund (RADF) Committee
Kilcoy Airfield Board of Management Committee
Lowood Recreation Reserve Management Committee
Fernvale Community Association
Lowood Community Action Group
Council of Mayors – Infrastructure and Planning Committee


Cr Bob Whalley 
Cr Robert "Bob" Whalley
M 0417 632 102
bwhalley@somerset.qld.gov.au

Bob Whalley has been heavily involved in the Somerset community for more than a decade and has a proven track record of working hard for the betterment of the community while representing the needs of his constituents.

Bob is an owner and operator of a small Somerset business and was instrumental in the establishment of the Somerset Region Business Alliance.

He first became a Councillor for Esk Shire Council in 2004 and served a full term before running as a mayoral candidate in 2008. Bob was then appointed to the position of Councillor for Somerset Regional Council in 2015.

He has lived in Somerset for more than two decades and is a proud family man.

Committees:
Traffic Safety Advisory Committee
Somerset Condensery Gallery Advisory Committee
Regional Arts Development Fund (RADF) Committee
Somerset Regional Recovery Group
Esk Racecourse Advisory Committee
Esk Radio Active Waste Advisory Committee
Healthy Waterways
Kilcoy Showground Reserve Overall Management Advisory Committee
Lowood Recreation Reserve Management Committee
Economic Recovery Sub-Group
Blacksnake Creek Committee
Council of Mayors – Economic Development Committee


 

Responsibilities of Councillors

As per Section 12 of the Local Government Act 2009, a Councillor must represent the current and future interests of the residents of the local government area.

Councillors also have the following responsibilities:

 -  ensuring the local government:
       - discharges its responsibilities under the Local Government Act 2009;
       - achieves its corporate and community plans;
       - complies with all laws that apply to local governments;
 -  providing high quality leadership to the local government and the community;
 -  participating in council meetings, policy development, and decision-making, for the benefit of the local government area;
 -  being accountable to the community for the local government's performance.


The Mayor has the following additional responsibilities:

 -  leading and managing meetings of the local government at which the mayor is the chairperson, including managing the conduct of the participants at the meetings;
 -  preparing a budget to present to the local government;
 -  leading, managing, and providing strategic direction to, the chief executive officer in order to achieve the high quality administration of the local government;
 -  directing the chief executive officer and senior executive employees, in accordance with the local government's policies;
 -  conducting a performance appraisal of the chief executive officer, at least annually, in the way that is decided by the local government (including as a member of a committee, for example);
 -  ensuring that the local government promptly provides the Minister with the information about the local government area, or the local government, that is requested by the Minister;
 -  being a member of each standing committee of the local government;
 -  representing the local government at ceremonial or civic functions.


Please note that Somerset Regional Council is not divided for electoral purposes (i.e. there are no electoral wards or divisions). Party politics have not been introduced into the Council.

Consult the Local Government Act 2009 for more details.

Councillor Reimbursement of Expenses Policy