University Council membership

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University Council membership


Official members

John M Dobson OAM
John M Dobson OAM (Chancellor)

John M Dobson OAM was the Parish Priest of Caloundra Parish between 1982 and 2012, and the Dean of the North Coast Deanery within the Catholic Church from 1992 to 2012.

His contributions to the community include founding privately-funded residential care facilities for the aged and for people with intellectual disabilities; and co-funding a retirement village.

Mr Dobson has also contributed to the establishment of a comprehensive college (in partnership with the Uniting Church); and has been responsible for creating dedicated support groups for prisoners and their families.

Mr Dobson has been a member of the University Council since 1997, and was elected Chancellor in March 2007 for an inaugural term from 1 April 2007 to 31 March 2012 and in December 2011 was reappointed from 1 April 2012 to 31 March 2017.

Professor Greg Hill (Vice-Chancellor and President)
Professor Greg Hill (Vice-Chancellor and President)

CertTeach Brisbane Teach.Coll., BA(Hons) Qld., PhD Qld.

Professor Greg Hill began his career as a primary school teacher. He later completed a BA Honours (Geography) and PhD (Wildlife/Statistical Ecology) at the University of Queensland (UQ). He taught at UQ for 15 years and gained national recognition for teaching innovation and technology transfer to developing countries.

He was appointed as Reader in Geographical Sciences and UQ Director of the Australian Research Council Key Centre in Land Information Studies and has established, and maintains research interests in: remote sensing, wildlife ecology, environmental planning, and education.

He accepted the Foundation Chair in Tropical Environmental Science at Charles Darwin University (CDU) in 1995 and was a Dean from 1997.

At CDU he was actively involved in the establishment, management and governance of University and national research centres and held various government appointments including Chair of the Northern Territory Board of Studies and membership of the Kakadu National Park Research Advisory Committee.

His experience in the Northern Territory cemented a commitment to Indigenous Australians and he is privileged to be adopted into the community of the White Eagle (Mak Mak) people from the Finnis River district.

Professor Hill was appointed Vice-Chancellor and President Designate at the University of the Sunshine Coast on 15 June 2010 and Vice-Chancellor and President on 1 January 2011.

As Vice-Chancellor and President, he serves as: Lead Vice-Chancellor, Universities Australia Indigenous Higher Education; Foundation Member, Regional Universities Network; Board Member, Education Australia Limited; Board Member, IDP Education Pty Limited; Member, Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre Ltd; and Member, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Higher Education Advisory Council.

He has also served as a member of the Australian Learning and Teaching Council's Priority Projects Standing Committee.

Before his appointment he was the Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of the Sunshine Coast, a role he had held since 2005.

Professor Birgit Lohmann (Deputy Vice-Chancellor)
Professor Birgit Lohmann (Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor)

BSc (Hons) Adel., PhD Flin.

Professor Birgit Lohmann commenced in the position of Deputy Vice-Chancellor on 14 February 2011 and attained the position of Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor in January 2016. Professor Lohmann is a graduate of the University of Adelaide (BSc Honours - Physics) and Flinders University (PhD in Atomic Physics). Her research interests are in experimental atomic physics, and she spent two years as a postdoctoral fellow at the Australian National University after graduating from Flinders University.

In 1986 she took up a position as a lecturer at Murdoch University. In 1990 she moved to Griffith University, where she was a teaching and research academic in physics, and served in a number of leadership roles including Head of the School of Science and Director of the Centre for Quantum Dynamics.

In 2007 she took up the position of Pro Vice-Chancellor (Learning and Quality) at the University of Adelaide, providing leadership in the areas of learning and teaching and oversight of the University's quality assurance processes, including the University's AUQA audit.

In this role she contributed to the strategic goals of the University, played a major role in policy development within the University and engaged significantly with national policy initiatives in the higher education sector. She was Chair of numerous high level University committees and working parties, including the program approval committee, and was the University's representative on state and national committees.

Professor Lohmann is an internationally known researcher in atomic and molecular physics, and has been a node manager within the ARC Centre of Excellence for Antimatter-Matter Studies since 2005.

Professor Lohmann has produced over 100 journal and conference contributions, and has served as both a chair and a member of the scientific committees of many international conferences.

Six members appointed by the Governor in Council

Ms Julie-Anne MeeMs Julie-Anne Mee

BBus C.Qld., MAdmin Griff.

Having developed a background in accounting administration and business solutions, Julie-Anne Mee is a qualified accountant who has held senior operational positions in large and small commercial and nonprofit organisations as well as spending some time in the public sector over the last 30 years.

In early 2006, Julie-Anne commenced working with the Australian Centre of Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies in the rollout of the Standard Chart of Accounts project in Queensland.

Julie-Anne has continued in this project for all other Australian jurisdictions with the National Standard Chart of Accounts (NSCOA) now ready for transfer to the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profit Commission (ACNC). This transfer occured in the second quarter 2013.

Julie-Anne has held a number of voluntary and paid positions in nonprofits and has a particular interest in education and training of volunteers and understanding the responsibilities of volunteers and employee in ongoing organizational sustainability.

Currently, Julie-Anne:

  • is a Director and Company Secretary of the Innovation Centre Sunshine Coast Board Pty Ltd since 2010
  • is the Parish Secretary at the Stanley River Catholic Parish including keeping the accounts for the Stanley River Ecumenical Committee
  • is the Accounting Specialist on the Australian Council for International Development's (ACFID) Code of Conduct Committee (as the accounting profession's representative – since mid-2008 and reappointed to December 2013)
  • is the Chair of the Audit and Risk Committee of St Vincent de Paul (Queensland) (member since 2009 and Chair since 2011)
  • is an elected Board member of Volunteering Queensland and and co-Vice President from 2013
  • is a Fellow of CPA Australia, having held numerous positions including 1995-96 Queensland Divisional President and 1998-99 National Vice President Professional Development; and was a member of the CPA National Disciplinary Panel (to March 2011)
  • was CPA Australia's representative on QUT's School of Accounting Advisory Committee between 1999 and 2012

In her spare time, Julie-Anne likes to relax with her husband at their orchard at Mt Mee.

Dr Suzanne InnesSuzanne-Innes.jpg

BA(Hons) BEdSt Qld., GradCertTESOL UNE, MSchM EdD CQU

Suzanne's career spanned four decades across primary, secondary and tertiary education. From 2005 to 2014, Suzanne worked as an Executive Director on a regional and state level for the Department of Education and Training. Prior to her retirement in 2014, Suzanne was overseeing the implementation of three National Partnership Programmes for state schooling in Queensland, developing curriculum and pedagogy policies and a suite of support resources that have been made available for all education sectors in Queensland and nationally through Education Services Australia.

Suzanne launched her own consultancy business in 2014. She currently conducts organisational reviews in both the public and private sectors. Suzanne's consultancy services focus on leadership and management, governance, strategic planning, supporting change and managing performance.

Ms Jacquelyn WrightMs Jacqueline Wright

BBus(Comp) NTU, Master of Computing Studies Deakin , GDipEd(Adult) S.Aust., GDipEd(Primary) NTU

Jacquelyn is currently employed as a Senior Primary Teacher on the Sunshine Coast.

Prior to this position she was employed as a Lecturer in Information Technology at Charles Darwin University for many years.

During this period Jacqueline was involved in the delivery of lectures and tutorials, as well as course coordination. She has a strong interest and commitment to education at all levels.

Jacqueline's original industry experience was as a Programmer / Systems Analyst with the Northern Territory Government.

Ms Debra Bennet

Debra Bennet is a 'Goorie Woman', a direct descendant of the Kullali Peoples (of South Western QLD) and Wakka Wakka and Gubbi Gubbi Peoples (of South East Queensland). With 28 years of successful community and cultural development experience, Debra has held various roles in the arts sector, disability sector, correctional centres and adult education arenas.

Her work involves the process of creatively drawing from, and working across disciplines and industry sectors to develop and strengthen community, and care for our natural environment.

Debra is currently employed as Director of Indigenous Services with Relationships (Qld), was previously Manager of the Indigenous Arts and Community Cultural Development Program with QLD Community Arts Network (QCAN), a partner in Nuthakine Consultancy, serves as a member of QLD Museums and Regional Galleries Indigenous Advisory Board, chairs the QLD Indigenous Arts Marketing and Export Agency (QIAMEA) within the Department of Premier and Cabinet, and is a founding member and director of the National Foundation for Indigenous Recovery and Development.

Debra has worked in Local Government and has had several years’ involvement coordinating student services in Secondary and Tertiary environments within Queensland, including the establishment of student support services at Griffith University and Central Queensland University.

Debra facilitates arts and cultural workshops including workshops on Cultural Awareness, Cultural Competencies and Alternative Approaches to Leadership.

She is also the author of Dynamic Wisdom of the Yarning Circle, and author / inventor of the Yarning Circle Framework and Process, based on her paternal grandfather’s clans (Kullali) stories and ceremonies given to her by Kullali and Wakka Wakka Elders within her clan. Debra is committed to building communities through maintaining social justice, arts and cultural practices and culturally appropriate processes.

She supports the broader aspirations and professional development of Indigenous communities and marginalised young people globally, working to ensure that all people have the right to learn in ways which suit their specific needs - to retrieve, and uphold wisdom to help them develop to their fullest capacity, live a rich spiritual and cultural life, and sustain the natural environment.

Ms Bennet is also a member of the University of the Sunshine Coast’s Indigenous Advisory Committee.

Two members of the University's academic staff

Professor Robert ElliotProfessor Robert Elliot

BA(Hons) NSW, MA La Trobe, DipEd Melb., PhD Qld.

Professor Robert Elliot is Pro Vice-Chancellor (International and Quality), and Professor of Philosophy at University of the Sunshine Coast.

The Pro Vice-Chancellor (International and Quality) oversees, manages and provides advice on internationalisation, quality assurance and improvement, and the collection and analysis of strategic information.

Professor Elliot is a member of the University Council, Chairperson of the Learning and Teaching Committee and the Internationalisation Advisory Committee.

He is a member of Academic Board and the Student Disciplinary and Student Grievance Appeals Committees. Professor Elliot was the foundation Dean of Arts and subsequently Dean, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences from 1995 until 2005.

Dr Mark SayersMark Sayers

PhD RMIT, MAppSci Canberra, BAppSci CCAE

Dr Mark Sayers joined the University in 2005, having worked as a sports scientist since the 1980’s. He has an extensive background in the biomechanics of team sports, technique analysis, and the development of sports specific speed and power.

Mark is an extremely experienced and popular lecturer, having held academic positions in sport science since the late 1980’s. In 2012 he received a national Office of Learning and Teaching Citation and in 2010 was voted one of the top ten lecturers in the country.

Dr Sayers has been a consultant biomechanist and coach for several national and international high profile sporting bodies and is recognised internationally for his work on the key skills in the sport of rugby union.

He was the biomechanist and special skills coach for the New Zealand All Blacks between 2000 and 2001 and again from 2004 to 2008 and has been credited as being a key aspect of the team’s success over the past 10 years.

Dr Sayers has over 60 peer reviewed publications in scientific journals, has authored or co-authored 8 book chapters, and has presented at more than 30 national and international conferences.

Mark has successfully supervised more than 30 HDR and Honours students.

One member of the University's full-time general staffJondickins 140X200

Mr Jon Dickins

BA(Hons) Griff.

Jon Dickins is the elected USC general staff member on the University Council. He has worked in academic administration at various Brisbane tertiary institutions for over 30 years and has been at the University of the Sunshine Coast for 8 years.

Jon works in the Centre for Support and Advancement of Learning and Teaching (C-SALT) / Blended Learning at the University and prior to this worked in the Academic Board Secretariat.

Two members of the student body

Mr Michael JefferiesMichael Jefferies


Michael is studying Law and Commerce (Financial Planning) at USC, and currently considering a career in commercial legal practice or corporate governance.

He has many other responsibilities at USC, having played a leading role in establishing both the Law Students' Association and International Relations Society student societies on campus. He is also the current co-chairperson of the Student Representative Council as the Business School's undergraduate member, and volunteers as a student mentor.

Within Council, Michael is particularly interested in the development of student life and activities on campus. Outside his studies, he plays the piano and saxophone, and is learning French.

Mr Raymart WalkerRaymart Walker

Raymart is currently completing a Bachelor of Education/Science at USC, focusing on the areas of Physics and Mathematics. He is planning on pursuing an honours degree and considering a career as an academic.

He holds a multitude of other roles at USC, including membership to the Academic Board, the Student Representative Council on behalf of the School of Science and Engineering, and as Secretary of the USC Golden Key chapter. He is also a student mentor and a PASS Leader and has successfully facilitated PASS sessions in the subjects of mathematics, physics and statistics.

Raymart is passionate about the quality of teaching and learning, in addition to the successful development of USC.

Member appointed by Council (USC Graduate)

Ms Natasha ReadMs Natasha Reed

BCom Griff., MBA Sunshine Coast

With a career founded on business and human resource management, Natasha Read has established a reputation for her impressive work ethic and proactive and committed approach to the management of individuals, teams and organisations.

Along with ten years as Director of the Sunshine Coast Health Foundation, Natasha sits on a number of local boards and committees including the University of the Sunshine Coast, Tafe Queensland East Coast and as Chair of the Australian Institute of Company Directors Sunshine Coast Committee.

Currently Group Executive Manager with Community Solutions, she has combined her passion for the not-for-profit sector with her varied commercial experience.

Natasha is also an active volunteer with a number of national and international associations.

Three members appointed by Council

Emeritus Professor Gerard Sutton OAGerard Sutton

BE (Hons), MEngSc, PhD

Emeritus Professor Gerard Sutton AO held the post of Vice-Chancellor of the University of Wollongong (UOW) from 1995 to 2011. He is currently the chairperson of the AARNet (Australia’s Academic and Research Network) Board as well as being a board member of the Bundanon Trust, the Port Kembla Port Corporation, the Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District and the Think Education Group.

His awards include Doctor of Science (Honours) UOW, Emeritus Professor of UOW and University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), the Australian Centenary Medal and Officer of the Order of Australia.

Mr Scott Williams AMScott Williams

QDAH Qld, BEc, GradDipCompSc, GradDipFinMangt, GradDipRurAcc, NE, FAICD, Hon.DLitt

Scott Williams AM is a successful serial small business operator and presently runs 4 accommodation businesses in Brisbane and 7 newspaper businesses in eastern Australia. One of his previous businesses was twice National Small Business of the year and listed 4 times in the 100 fastest growing Australian businesses.

He has been elected to local government in NSW and was Mayor and a representative on the NSW Shires Association. He has served as independent Chair of another Council’s Audit Committee.

He served on the University of New England Council from 1997 to 2012. He was Deputy Chancellor for 4 years and Chair of the Finance and Tender Committees for 13 years.

Before launching his own businesses, Scott worked for the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations and as a management consultant.

Scott has an AM for services to local government, business, community radio and higher education and for philanthropy.

In attendance

Dr Scott Snyder

PhD Adel
Chief Operating Officer

Ms Merryn Falk

GDipEd Monash, BA UNE
Council Secretary

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