Judicial Members

Judicial officers of the SPA are usually acting or retired Judges or Magistrates of a NSW Federal, Supreme, District or Local Court. 

They are appointed by the NSW Governor on the recommendation of the Attorney General for a period of up to three years and members may be reappointed at the discretion of the Governor.

The Chair of the State Parole Authority is Justice Geoffrey Bellew, SC who was appointed in February 2023. 

SPA Chair: Geoffrey Bellew, SC 

Judge Bellew was admitted to the NSW Bar in 1991, appointed Senior Counsel in 2006 and sworn in as a Judge of the Supreme Court in 2012, sitting in the Common Law Division, and regularly as a member of the Bench of the Court of Criminal Appeal. A noted author, he has written numerous legal texts on various subjects including the law of evidence and is an Adjunct Professor of Law at Notre Dame University. Outside the law, Judge Bellew remains a passionate rugby league devotee and is a proud,former Director of the National Rugby League Limited, the Manly-Warringah Leagues’ Club and former Chairman of the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles Football Club.  


Judge David Freeman 

The Parole Authority’s Alternate Chair, Judge Freeman has a formidable knowledge of criminal law having spent more than 30 years on the NSW District Court. After stepping down from the bench he was appointed an Acting Judge and an Acting Supreme Court Judge.  


Judge Mark Marien SC  

Appointed to the District Court of NSW in 2004, Judge Marien has served the law in a distinguished career spanning 40 years. His roles have included Deputy Senior Crown Prosecutor, a Director of the Criminal Law Review Division of the Attorney Generals’ Department and President of the Children’s Court of NSW. He was appointed a Senior Counsel in 2003.


John Bailey 

Appointed an Acting Local Court Magistrate in 2008, Mr Bailey served on the metropolitan and country circuits. Previously a Public Solicitor in the Criminal Indictable Section he has extensive experience in criminal and civil matters.


Chris Maxwell, KC

Highly regarded as an exceptional practitioner specialising in criminal prosecutions, Chris Maxwell, QC was appointed Senior Crown Prosecutor for NSW 2018 - 2022. Joining the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions in 1987, he became a Queens Counsel in 1989, and was deputy senior crown prosecutor for more than 20 years. A prosecutor of war crimes at the United Nations Mission in Kosovo in 2002 he later served as the UN's Chief International Prosecutor.


Ian McRae 

Appointed a Magistrate in 1988, and a former mayor of Temora Municipal Council, his previous roles include NSW Home Fund Commissioner, Senior Coordinating Magistrate Western Suburbs Local Court and Judicial Member of the NSW Racing Tribunal. 


Allan Moore 

Appointed a Magistrate in 1989, Mr Moore presided at Central Local Court for more than decade.  In 2011, he was appointed as a Tribunal Member with the Victims Compensation Tribunal and an Acting Magistrate of NSW.  


Judge James Wood, AO KC

One of the State’s most admired and respected Justices of the Supreme Court, Judge Wood was first appointed to the SPA in 2013 as the Chair, a role he held for six years before resigning in February 2020 to accept a leading role at the World Anti-Doping Agency.  He returned to the SPA in February 2022.


Last updated:

16 Feb 2023

Was this content useful?
We will use your rating to help improve the site.
Please don't include personal or financial information here
Please don't include personal or financial information here

We acknowledge Aboriginal people as the First Nations Peoples of NSW and pay our respects to Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the ongoing connection Aboriginal people have to this land and recognise Aboriginal people as the original custodians of this land.

Top Return to top of page Top