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Stephen Horne is a qualified Company Director, Company Secretary and Internal Auditor, and and experienced Non-Executive Director (NED), holding positions on Australian and International Boards and an extensive portfolio of public sector Audit & Risk Committees in the Commonwealth, NSWG, NSW and Victorian Local Government sector.


Stephen previously served in the NSW Government for 37 years, including nine years as a Chief Executive (of the Internal Audit Bureau) and before that as the NSW Assistant Auditor-General (Performance Audit).

In 2015, Stephen established himself as a professional Non-Executive Director, and established this private consultancy practice  (Checks Balances & Integrity) through which to provide services as a specialist adviser, consultant and trainer in the fields of integrity services, governance, risk management, internal audit and performance audit.


Stephen began authorship of leading edge material on governance long ago, starting in 1998 with On Board: Guide to Better Practice for Public Sector Governing & Advisory Boards. That has continued to the present day, with his recent collaborations producing Governance Principles for Boards of Public Sector Entities (April 2016), 27 Years of Fraud Control in the NSW Public Sector 1989-2016 (2017), and Effective Internal Auditing in the Public Sector (2020).


As a NED, Stephen's passion is simplifying complexity and building sustainable performance through a relentless commitment to integrity, quality and most of all, culture.


As a successful business strategist, Stephen gives form to vision, identifies vacuums that others don’t see and implements effective strategies to fill them.


As a governance professional, Stephen has a well-honed sense of risk, and how to manage it to best effect at least cost.


Operationally, Stephen has a deep understanding of the dynamics of structures, processes and controls, how they interact with employees, suppliers and customers, and how they add to, or impair, value creation.


Most of all, in undertaking any assignment or role, Stephen looks deeply at how organisations protect the greatest asset not shown on the balance sheet: their reputation. To this end, a key point of difference is Stephen's focus on culture as a key component of the risk and control environment.

Stephen's portfolio of audit committee experience spans the Commonwealth, NSWG, NSW Local Government and Victorian Local Government sectors. He has experience of a diverse range of entity and sector types, covering: General Government Sector, Health Sector (Hospital, District and Funding bodies), Service Integration bodies, Service Delivery bodies, specialist client management bodies, and Councils (large, small, merged, metropolitan and regional).


He has lead the establishment of some ARCs from scratch, has innovated with ARC strategies, methods and operation, and has facilitated growth and improvement in his subject matter areas of specialisation: governance, risk management, internal audit, corruption prevention and fraud control. Stephen also focuses on improving procurement and contract management, with a strong emphasis on probity.  A theme through all of his ARC activity is building a high integrity performance based culture for the organisation. 


Specific Audit & Risk Committees from where Stephen draws my experience are listed separately in his LinkedIn Profile and he currently Chairs five of those.


Stephen also actively participates in fostering innovation and developing thought leadership for ARCs in the public sector, and provides national training for current and potential ARC members. He has trained over 250 people in best practices for ARCs since 2018.

Previous Governance Roles:

2018-2020: Co-ordinator, Governance Award, Australasian Reporting Awards


2016 - 2019: Global Chair, Public Sector Guidance Committee, Institute of Internal Auditors 


2015 - 2019: Non Executive Director, Global Board, Institute of Internal Auditors


2017 - 2018: National Chair, Public Sector Governance  Committee, Governance Institute of Australia

2008 - 2017: Non Executive Director, Australian Board, Institute of Internal Auditors

2013 - 2015: National President and Board Chairman, Institute of Internal Auditors, Australia


2011 - 2015: Vice President, Institute of Internal Auditors, Australia

2006 - 2015: Executive Member (Managing Director & CEO), Board of Management, NSWG Internal Audit Bureau (fully commercial Government Trading Enterprise)

2015 - 2016: Non Executive Director, Global Finance Committee, Institute of Internal Auditors (based in USA)


2013 - 2015: Chair, Remuneration Committee, Institute of Internal Auditors, Australia

2013 - 2015: Executive Member, Nominations Committee, Institute of Internal Auditors, Australia


2011 - 2013: NSW Councillor, Institute of Chartered Secretaries


2008 - 2012: Founder & Governing Group member, NSW Public Sector Audit & Risk Practitioners Network


2004 - 2007: NSW Councillor, Institute of Internal Auditors

1994 - 2015: Co-Founder & Governing Group member, Corruption Prevention Network

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