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Our People

Founded on the passion of aviation and managed by a team of enthusiasts.

Alliance Airline’s success is attributed to the extensive experience and complete dedication of our team.  Each member of our network takes great pride in providing the highest standards in safety, reliability and operational performance  for our valued clients throughout Australia, New Zealand, the Pacific Islands, and South East Asia.

Board of Directors

Stephen Padgett OAM

Steve-PadgettNon Executive Chairman

Steve Padgett has been in aviation for over 50 years, learning to fly at age 16 after winning a RAAF Flying Scholarship.

Steve has held a Commercial Pilot Licence, a Flight Instructor Rating with endorsements on Cessna Citation Business Jets.

Steve launched his own company, Aeromil, in 1980 in Sydney and, in 1995, moved Aeromil to Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, which was the catalyst for the development of Sunshine Express Airlines in 1998 and the formation of Alliance Airlines in 2002 with Steve Padgett as Chairman.

In 2015, the Aeromil Group of Companies was acquired by Hawker Pacific, with Steve appointed Deputy Chairman of Hawker Pacific Australia.

Steve is a Life Member of the Regional Aviation Association of Australia (RAAA).  He is Chairman of the Australian Aviation Hall of Fame and, more recently, was invited to become a Member of the National Council of the Australian Air Force Cadets.

Steve Padgett is recognised as a leader in the aviation industry in the Asia-Pacific region and has been acknowledged by his peers as one of the region’s Top 10 people of influence.   In 2019 Steve was awarded the Order of Australia in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for his service to aviation.


Scott McMillan

Managing Director

Scott McMillan has been Managing Director of Alliance since its establishment in April 2002. Prior to joining Alliance, Scott held various positions with Ansett Australia, Flight West Airlines, and qualified as a chartered accountant with Peat Marwick Mitchell & Co (now KPMG). Scott has 25 years’ experience in the aviation industry in Australasia across various financial, operational and commercial roles, including significant experience in the FIFO industry.
Peter Housden

Independent Non-Executive Director

Peter has been on the Board of Alliance Aviation since listing in 2002 and is Chair of the Audit Committee.  He has worked primarily in commercial and financial roles in a wide range of industries – manufacturing, Oil & Gas, Mining, Chemicals, Professional Services, Contracting, Telecommunications and Rail.  Peter is now a professional Non-Executive Director and sits on one other listed company board. He is also Chair of the Audit & Risk Committee for Sydney Trains.

David Crombie AM

Independent Non-Executive Director

David was a founding partner of the GRM (Palladium) Group engaged in International development assistance and management of agricultural and beef cattle projects across northern Australia. 

He was previously a Director of Grainco Australia, and Chairman Meat and Livestock Australia 1998-05. He was Chairman of the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation 2000-08.  He served on the Boards of Export Finance Insurance Corporation (EFIC) 2007-10 and Foodbank (Qld) and was a Commissioner of ACIAR  2007-14.

 He was President of the National Farmers Federation 2006-10, Chairman and President of Queensland Rugby and President of Australian Rugby 2013-14.  He  received an AM for services to agriculture, communities and sport in the 2014 Australia Day Awards.

David is also a Director of Barrack St Investments (BST), a publicly listed Australian entity.

David is experienced in business development and operations and currently manages a family development company plus properties, breeding cattle and farming in southern Queensland. 


Lee Schofield

Executive Director

Lee commenced his career working as a solicitor in a boutique Sydney law firm, where he acquired a broad experience in corporate, commercial and transport matters. Lee subsequently spent many years working for an international aircraft leasing company where he gathered extensive experience managing aircraft leasing, sale and financing transactions throughout the world and was part of the team that implemented an aircraft trading joint venture with investment bank Goldman Sachs. After a period as the head of Asia/Pacific for the joint venture he then made the transition to airline operations as a member of executive team at an Australian based airline prior to joining Alliance in June 2012.

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Management Team

Matt Hobson

General Manager - Aviation Services

Matt Hobson joined Alliance Aviation Services Limited in 2012 and is currently General Manager – Aviation Services responsible for aircraft and aircraft engine acquisition, sales and leasing and all complimentary Aviation Services.

Prior to this appointment Matt was General Manager, Engineering of Alliance Aviation Services Limited subsidiary entity Alliance Airlines Pty Ltd, with responsibility for all engineering and maintenance activities. He was responsible for the June 2013 transition of Alliance Airlines CAR30 Certificate of Approval to a CASR Part 145 Approved Maintenance Organisation. Matt was previously the director of a consultancy providing aviation support to airlines, airports, OEMs, aircraft lessors, government and private sector clients. He has also held senior management roles with Bombardier Aerospace Commercial Aircraft, Cobham Aviation Services Australia and Skippers Aviation.

Matt is a qualified Licenced Aircraft Maintenance Engineer and pilot with a personal interest in all matters pertaining to air safety and human factors within aircraft maintenance.

Barry Sims

General Manager Airworthiness (CAMO)

Barry joined Alliance in February 2002 as a Technical Avionics Engineer and soon progressed to Maintenance Controller. Prior to joining Alliance, Barry worked extensively within the industry as a Licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineer for Eastwest Airlines and then Ansett Australia and as an instructor in aircraft avionics with ATAE.

Marc Devine

Chief Financial Officer

Marc Devine joined Alliance Airlines in May 2016 in the position of Financial Controller before being named Chief Financial Officer in March 2017 and Company Secretary in August 2017.  He is responsible for all governance, information technology and financial management functions of the Group.  He has over 17 years of finance experience in a number of industries and sectors, both public and private. He has held senior management positions within the Healthe Group, Mater Health Group and the Metro North Hospital and Health Service.  Marc is a member of the Certified Practising Accountants Australia.

Robin Richardson

General Manager – North Queensland

Robin has over 30 years’ experience in aviation having previous roles with Trans Australia Airlines and Australian Airlines, as well as General Manager for Inland Pacific Airlines and General Manager – Northern Australia with Flight West Airlines.  Robin is currently the General Manager – Commercial North Queensland and responsible for managing Alliance’s Cairns and Townsville bases and operations.

Shane Edwards

General Manager Commercial

Shane Edwards joined Alliance Airlines as its General Manager Commercial in February 2015.  Prior to this Shane provided consultancy services to a wide range of private and publicly listed companies specialising in marketing and public relations, corporate governance, commercial negotiations, business development strategies the evaluation of business acquisitions.

From 2010 to July 2012 Shane was a non-executive director and Chairman of the Audit Committee for Careers Australia Group – Australia’s largest private provider of vocational training. Shane was also a non-executive director of Australian International Training and Management which focused on providing overseas students with vocational training at an international campus in the Philippines.

Prior to this Shane was with the Talbot Group of companies initially as CEO of the Talbot Hotel Group (2002-2006) after which time he became CEO of the Entire Group. In this role Shane  was responsible for the day-to-day management of Talbot Group and provided an innovative marketing and commercial negotiation perspective to the group.

Prior to joining Talbot group, Shane was Managing Director of the ASX listed company Pacific Sports and  Entertainment,  which  owned  and  operated  Queensland  sporting  franchises  including: the Brisbane Broncos (rugby league), the Brisbane Bullets (basketball) and the Brisbane Bandits (baseball). Pacific Sports and Entertainment also owned and operated Queensland Entertainment Services which monitored poker machines on behalf of the Queensland Government.

Shane was Managing Director of the Brisbane Broncos from 1995 to 2002 and has built a reputation as one of Australia's most respected commercial negotiators and marketers. His credit include leadership roles in with a range of high profile events including the 1982 Commonwealth Games in Brisbane, World Expo 86 in Vancouver and World Expo 88 in Brisbane.

Shane is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Management and was awarded a Centenary Medal in 2004

Russell Bryant

General Manager - WA & NT

Russell joined Alliance and was appointed as General Manager, Western Australia in 2006 to establish an operation in WA. Since his appointment, the WA base has grown to have the largest fleet and operation in the Alliance network. Prior to this, Russell held senior management roles with Ansett, and Air New Zealand and has over 27 years aviation experience.  He is an active member of the WA Chamber of Minerals and Energy infrastructure committee.

Stewart Tully

General Manager Operations

Stewart joined Alliance in October 2015. Stewart has 25 years’ experience most recently as a management consultant operating in Europe, Asia and the Americas specialising in Airline Operations and logistics.  Prior to this, Stewart held operational and management roles across various Australian airlines including Ansett Australia, Virgin Blue and was a member of the start-up management team of V Australia.

Tim Wright

General Manager – SA & VIC

Tim joined Alliance in 2007. Tim has a postgraduate Master’s degree in Aviation Management and 12 years’ experience in the aviation industry including regional airline commercial management and airport operational roles. Tim is responsible for managing Alliance’s Adelaide, Melbourne & New Zealand bases and operations; with a primary focus on safety compliance and ensuring client key performance indicators are met.

Toby Koch

General Manager Engineering

Toby joined Alliance in 2007 as an Avionics LAME at the introduction of the Adelaide Base. In 2010 Toby took on the role of Adelaide Senior Base Engineer and in 2012 became Regional Maintenance Manager VIC/SA. In 2014 Toby relocated to Brisbane to take on the role of General Manager – Engineering.

Toby is a qualified Avionics Licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineer and prior to Alliance Airlines worked as a LAME in Adelaide for REX Airlines, Airnorth and National Jet Systems. With career exposure from general aviation to high capacity airlines Toby has a wealth of experience in both Line and Base aircraft maintenance.

Tracie Deegan

General Manager HR & Training

Tracie joined Alliance in 2008 and is responsible for Human Resources, Training and Development. Prior to Alliance Tracie held senior management roles with the automotive group, Motorama, the Queensland Police Service and HR consulting in various SME’s. Tracie is degree qualified and has obtained her MBA in 2014.

Tracie’s experience includes 15 years in HR in automotive, retail and aviation industries and 11 years in Qld Police Service. 

People often ask me how i would describe Alliance culture. There is one word that keeps coming up and that is pride. We are proud of our success and we are proud of each other. Our Alliance family is built on loyalty, commitment to each other and knowing that when the chips are down we are there for each other no matter what. That is what sets us apart in the industry.


Alex Ananian-Cooper

National Charter Sales Manager

Alex Ananian-Cooper joined Alliance Airlines in June 2017. Prior to his work at Alliance Airlines, Alex held the position of Regional Manager for Queensland/PNG for Virgin Australia. Alex has over 15 years’ experience in the aviation industry including working across various roles in Strategic Planning, Government & Community Relations and Operations at Canberra Airport and in Airport Planning and Corporate Sales at Virgin Australia. Alex holds a Bachelor of Laws degree from ANU and an Executive MBA from the Australian Graduate School of Management (AGSM). Alex is responsible for sourcing long-term charter sales opportunities for the Group as well as managing the commercial aspects of Alliance's RPT services.

Amanda Drake

General Manager - Safety

Amanda has over 28 years aviation industry experience that includes airlines, airports and regulatory management roles. This experience is spread across Safety, Security, Ground Operations and Corporate Compliance. As General Manager – Safety, Amanda is responsible for the development and maintenance of the Safety Management and Quality Management Systems at Alliance Airlines.

Gerard Byrne

General Manager – Flight Operations & Chief Pilot

Gerard joined Alliance in 2004 as F100 Fleet Manager based in Brisbane.  In 2009 Gerard became Flight Standards Manager overseeing training and checking of all flight crew before taking on the role of Flight Operations Manager and Chief Pilot in December 2018.

Gerard is a Check Captain and a Type Rating and Instrument Instructor and Examiner on the F50 and F70/100 aircraft.

Prior to joining Alliance  Gerard  worked in Western Australia for 16 years with Skywest Aviation conducting Customs/ Coastwatch operations in Australia’s north west and  RPT with Skywest Airlines in Perth  flying J31, F50 and F100 aircraft.

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