SGCH Group Board appointments strengthen aspirations for impact

30 August 2021 – NSW’s largest community housing organisation, SGCH Group, is pleased to announce the appointment of Rajiv Viswanathan and Philip Fagan-Schmidt to its Board.   

SGCH manages $3.3 billion in assets, $1.1 billion of which are owned properties across Sydney. It is also delivering Australia’s largest non-government pipeline of new social and affordable housing. The appointment of Mr Viswanathan and Mr Fagan-Schmidt strengthens the organisation’s focus on governance and strategic focus on growth.

Mr Viswanathan is the former Chief Executive Officer of Indigenous Business Australia. He brings extensive experience across the public, private and community sectors and international expertise, gained through former roles in business development and risk management with Macquarie Group in New York and Sydney, and as a corporate lawyer working in London and Sydney.

With an illustrious career in social housing, Mr Fagan-Schmidt held the position of Executive Director of Housing SA for almost a decade with responsibility for 40,000 social housing properties. Since leaving the South Australian public service in 2018, he has worked as a consultant and independent director and advisor. He was recognised in 2015 with a Queens Birthday Public Service Medal for outstanding service in social housing policy and practice.

The appointments are part of a planned succession process including the retirement of Philip Manidis, after an eight-year tenure as a Director of the Board.

SGCH Chair Annette Gallard said, “We thank Philip for his enormous contribution. As the founder of Manidis Roberts, the board benefitted from Philip’s expertise in urban planning, environment and communication services and infrastructure projects. Philip has an inherent interest in people that speaks volumes of his passion and commitment to creating positive change. He will be missed.”

SGCH is committed to ensuring the Board is robust, diverse, and fit for the future. The Board sought experienced directors with a breadth of skills and backgrounds and was delighted to attract Rajiv Viswanathan and Philip Fagan-Schmidt to the Board positions.

Ms Gallard continued, “Both Rajiv and Philip will bring fantastic insight to SGCH as leaders in their respective fields. Rajiv has energy and enthusiasm for improving outcomes for Aboriginal people and using his strategic finance capability to create social impact. Philip is a highly respected leader in housing and brings his passion for policy and invaluable expertise from another jurisdiction which will help drive innovation. We welcome them both and look forward to their contributions to our vision of great places for everyone.”

SGCH Group has an increasing focus on embedding ESG across all aspects of its business, building effective partnerships with organisations that help to improve outcomes for customers and communities. In June 2021, SGCH Group received the largest loans from the latest bond issued by the National Housing and Finance Investment Corporation, including a floating rate note at $250 million. With the ongoing backing of NHFIC and institutional investors, SGCH has now mobilised $475 million and is on track to deliver 1,000 homes in 1,000 days.


About SGCH

  • SGCH is a leading not-for-profit community housing provider with over 35 years’ experience in developing and managing sustainable, safe and affordable homes and connecting people to opportunity.
  • Recognised as one of the largest community housing providers in Australia, SGCH houses around 11,500 people in over 7,000 homes across the Sydney Metropolitan Region.

SGCH Group Chair, Annette Gallard

Annette’s professional career was in the NSW Public Sector where she worked for 28 years. Annette held a number of positions in the then Department of Housing including Regional Director Northern NSW, Regional Director Central Sydney and Deputy Director General Public Housing. In 2002 she joined the then NSW Department of Community Services and was Deputy Director General Operations and then Chief Executive. Since her retirement in 2011 she has held non-executive director roles in non-government housing and disability services organisations. In 2012 she was awarded the Public Service Medal for services to disadvantaged communities including Aboriginal communities.