Subscribe to CIO Magazine »

Virgin Australia appoints its first CIO

But there's no room at the boardroom table yet for new CIO Lawrie Turner

Virgin Australia has appointed Lawrie Turner as its new CIO but the company will not be appointing him to its board.

A Virgin Australia spokesperson said a seat is not being made available to Turner and could not comment whether he will have a place on the board in the future.

“We already have our board members,” said the spokesperson. “Our CFO [Sankar Narayan], who Lawrie will answer to, is his direct, first port of call.”

CIOs don’t get a seat at the top table: study.

The spokesperson said that Turner will play a crucial role in managing Virgin Australia’s new Sabre booking and check-in system that it transitioned to last month.

Last month, the airline reported problems with its new Sabre system, which led to delays for passengers.

Turner worked with Sabre Holdings 1998 to 2000 and since then has held CIO roles with Aurizon, Optus and David Jones. He has about eight-and-a-half years’ experience in the CIO role.

Virgin Australia’s head of information services, Segar Reddy, will be leaving the airline to take up his own consultancy business, according to the spokesperson.

Lawrie will commence his role with the airline on 25 February.

Follow CIO Australia on Twitter and Like us on Facebook… Twitter: @CIO_Australia, Facebook: CIO Australia, or take part in the CIO conversation on LinkedIn: CIO Australia

Join the CIO Australia group on LinkedIn. The group is open to CIOs, IT Directors, COOs, CTOs and senior IT managers.

More about: David Jones, Facebook, Optus, Sabre
References show all


IT Expert


Any organisation that has a CIO reporting to a bean counter is a clear indicator they are not serious about IT strategy. After 12 months one of two scenarios will eventuate:
1. The CFO will be sacked for non delivery OR
2. The CIO will be sacked for non delivery

The model does not work and will not work and I a am surprised any experienced CIO would take such a role report to a bean counter - suicide mission lawrie!!C



Wouldn't have expected to see the CIO on the board .... that is not the their role.
However, I do agree that answering to the CFO is a one trip ...
A CIO role is to support ALL business departments to achieve strategic objectives.




Richard, why shouldn't a CIO be on a company board? Surely technology is so pervasive across organisations these days that the CIO should be helping drive strategy?



Interesting that everyone seems to be anti-CFO reporting lines. I have worked with a couple of them now and if you get the right CFO who has that broader strategic/business view and allows or even encourages the same from the CIO then the relationship can work very well.



Any CIO fixated to not reporting to a CFO either has no confidence in their own skills to influence and deliver or is on a power trip. I've reported to CEO's and CFO's and the simple answer is that it very much depends on your own drive and on the individual you report to , not the title of the individual. In fact on e of the most successful career stints as a CIO was reporting to the CFO as the CFO was totally supportive , was the driver in the business and also signed off on all of the capital. To blankly state that reporting to a CFO is bad (or good) just demonstrates a lack of awareness of the real world.

Comments are now closed.
Related Coverage
Related Whitepapers
Latest Stories
Community Comments
Tags: CIO Lawrie Turner, CIO Careers, Sabre, IT careers, board of directors, ICT careers, Virgin Australia
Latest Blog Posts
  • Rebranded Quadmark revamps its IT solutions with Google Apps
    The Singapore office was using Exchange as its email server but encountered various issues such as storage capacity limitations and difficulty in managing spam. Adding new users to the server was also a hassle that often required a third party vendor, resulting in a waste of time and resources. Quadmark also experienced email performance issues that slowed down their employees’ response time, leading to frustration among staff and clients. Quadmark’s management felt that it was unacceptable to continue it’s current solution and thus decided to streamline its IT infrastructure alongside its rebranding plans. The business wanted a unified and consolidated email service for its various offices. Quadmark also wanted to be able to house files and documents on the cloud.
    Learn more »
  • All Flash and Databases - Storage Switzerland
    This webcast explores how All-Flash enterprise storage compares to traditional disk-centric arrays. Learn how to best leverage Flash so databases thrive and limitations of I/O disappear, while exploring the pitfalls and peculiarities of Flash, and how to optimise its performance as a storage solution to ensure reliance, predictability and cost savings for a variety of enterprise workloads.
    Learn more »
  • The F5 DDoS Protection Reference Architecture part 3 of 3
    This whitepaper is the third in a three-part series on distributed denial of service attacks (DDoS) and multi-tier DDoS protection. This section refers to case studies of different approaches to deploying protection architecture, including an enterprise customer scenario, an FSI customer scenario and an SMB customer scenario. The paper explains how these options should provide the flexibility and needed to combat the modern DDoS threat.
    Learn more »
All whitepapers
rhs_login_lockGet exclusive access to Invitation only events CIO, reports & analysis.
Salary Calculator

Supplied by

View the full Peoplebank ICT Salary & Employment Index

Recent comments