See also:Current Board
Professor John Simons: President
John is Executive Dean of Arts at Macquarie University. He was educated at the University of Wales and the University of Exeter. He previously worked at the universities of Wales, Exeter, Winchester, Edge Hill and Lincoln and has held visiting Professorships in the USA. In 1993 he held a fellowship at the Huntington Library. In the 1990s, he worked in various Eastern European countries on projects to rebuild universities after the fall of communism. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, the Higher Education Academy, the Zoological Society of London and the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics and on the Peer Review College of the AHRC. Before coming to Australia he was on the steering committee of the Standing Conference for the Arts and Social Sciences, a council member of the charity Vegetarian for Life, a director of EMMedia (a company providing capital for film projects), and chair of the board of SIREN FM (a community radio station). He is now treasurer of DASSH, on the council of the charity Voiceless, on the advisory board of the Australia India Youth Dialogue, co-chair of the board of 2SER (a community radio station) and a TEQSA auditor. He has published very widely on topics ranging from Middle English romance to the history of cricket. Lately he has concentrated on animals and his chief publications are Animal Rights and the Politics of Literary Representation (2002) and Rossetti’s Wombat (2008). He published two monographs in 2012. One, Kangaroo, is a social history of kangaroos. The other, The Tiger that Swallowed the Boy, concerns the exotic animal trade in Victorian England. He is a published poet.
Associate Professor Peta Ashworth: Vice President
Peta leads CSIRO’s Science into Society Group (SISG), researching stakeholder perceptions to areas of national significance to Australia. Peta holds an Adjunct Associate Professor position at the University of Queensland. She manages over 20 social science researchers working across five CSIRO flagships and her group has grown from 3 to 23 in the past five years, signifying the importance of integrating complex issues into society. The current profile of research for her group includes working across energy, climate adaptation, oceans, minerals, and sustainable agriculture domains. Researchers in her team are also involved in the Centrelink Alliance project aimed to improve service delivery for Centrelink stakeholders. In each project researchers develop social processes to engage with a range of relevant stakeholders on the topic of research. This approach aligns with Peta’s own research interest on how to deliver information to best effect. In her current work, Peta Chairs the International Energy Agency’s Greenhouse Gas (IEA GHG) Social Research Network and has gained an international reputation in researching stakeholder perceptions to climate change and low emission energy technologies.
Professor Michele Simons: Treasurer
Michele is Professor and Dean of Education, University of Western Sydney. She has previously held a number of leadership positions at the University of South Australia, including Dean of Education from 2007-2010. Prior to entering the University as an Academic, Michele worked in the non-government sector in community-based organisations providing family services and supporting training and development initiatives for workers. She has made a significant contribution to scholarship in the fields of teacher education and vocational education and training in Australia. Her research interests include learning in non-formal settings such as workplaces and community organisation and workforce development. Her work has included the management of large national projects awarded from a number of government and industry sources, including Category 1 funds from the ARC and the NVETRE research grant programs. Michele is widely published, having produced over 100 publications across her career to date. She brings a wealth of experience in leading and managing national associations to her work for CHASS. She has been a member of the Australian Vocational Education and Training Research Association (AVETRA) since its inception and is currently the President of AVETRA. She is the current Treasurer for the Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE).
Associate Professor Rhian Parker: Secretary
Rhian is a Senior Research Fellow and Associate Professor at the Centre for Research and Action in Public Health (CeRAPH) at the University of Canberra. She is also a Senior Research Fellow and Associate Professor at the Australian National University. Rhian is a health sociologist with a particular interest in the delivery of primary health care and alternative models of care. She has published extensively in this area. She also has an interest in body image and cosmetic surgery and has published a book on women and cosmetic surgery.
Christie is the Creative Director of the TAFE SA Adelaide College of the Arts, a multi-arts training facility in the heart of Adelaide. She brings to this role a wealth of experience in the delivery of festivals and events, an enormous network of practicing artists and arts-workers; and a commitment to raising the bar for both arts training practice and the understanding of the benefits of the arts for a wider public. Christie was Director of the Adelaide Fringe as it successfully moved from a biennial to an annual event 2007 – 2010. She worked closely with research practitioners to enable data to be sourced from Fringe audiences and artists. This work was particularly focused on the social impact of arts events. Christie worked to create shared methodology for social impact across South Australian events. In the Vocational Education sector, she successfully oversees the delivery of two stand-alone degree programs in Dance and Visual Arts as well as a breadth of industry based VET sector programs.
Dr Camilla Couch
Camilla is the Outreach Coordinator at Ultimo College, Sydney Institute, TAFENSW. She has broad professional experience in the development and delivery of innovative place/community based Vocational Education and Training (VET) programs in inner and south western Sydney, particularly in public and social housing communities. Camilla has a strong professional and academic background in education and she has ongoing practitioner research experience on advisory research committees and is active on many local education and cross sectoral community committees across the Sydney LGA. She has a strong commitment to social justice, VET and quality research and is the key contact for Sydney Institute for the DEEWR Innovations Fund ‘Promising Futures’ PLACE (Partners in Learning and Community Enterprise) project. Camilla is interested in strengthening relationships between VET and the humanities, arts and social sciences and building research capacity through innovative collaboration between the tertiary education sectors.
Dr Nigel Erskine
Nigel was recently appointed Research Manager at the Australian National Maritime Museum (ANMM) where he has been employed since 2004. During this time he has served periodically as Senior Curator and Assistant Director, and has curated a number of exhibitions, published two books and been a Partner Investigator in two ARC projects. Prior to joining ANMM, he was Director of the Norfolk Island Museum (2000-2003). While working on his PhD at James Cook University, he was employed as an Associate Lecturer in Maritime Archaeology, and appointed Research Fellow with the Queensland Museum. In 1998-99 he led the Pitcairn Project, undertaking archaeological work in the eastern Pacific. Nigel is a strong advocate for collaborative projects which link tertiary institutions with museums. He is a council member of the Australian Register of Historic Vessels and a member of the Australasian Institute for Maritime Archaeology, Australian Association of Maritime History and NSW Writers’ Centre.
Associate Professor Katie Hughes
Katie holds the position of Associate Professor of Socially Inclusive Education in the Victoria Institute for Education, Diversity and Lifelong Learning which works to improve the learning outcomes for students from diverse, low socioeconomic, or under-represented backgrounds. VI’s research focuses on applying inter-disciplinary translational techniques to real world scenarios. Prior to this, she was Associate Pro Vice–Chancellor (Social Inclusion) at Victoria University. She is the Vice-President elect of the Australian Sociological Association for 2013-2015. Holding qualifications from universities in New Zealand, Australia and the United Kingdom, she has been working in the tertiary sector for twenty five years in a variety of roles. Her disciplinary background is within the Social Sciences (broadly Gender Studies, Education and Sociology) and she has published widely in the area, particularly, of education and social disadvantage. Currently, she leads a $1.4m project which explores the ways in which the secondary and tertiary sectors can better partner to increase the numbers of students from LSES backgrounds entering universities and graduating.
Professor Joe Siracusa
Joseph is Associate Dean of International & Justice Studies and Professor of Human Security and International Diplomacy in the School of Global Studies, Social Science and Planning, at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University, Melbourne, Australia. A native of Chicago and long-time resident of Australia, he studied at the University of Denver and the University of Vienna and received his PhD from the University of Colorado (Boulder). He is internationally known for his writings on nuclear history, American diplomacy, and presidential politics. Professor Siracusa is also a frequent political affairs commentator in the Australian media. He has worked at Merrill Lynch in Boston, the University of Queensland in Brisbane, and for three years served as senior visiting fellow in the Key Centre for Ethics, Law, Justice and Governance, Griffith University. Among his numerous books are A History of United States Foreign Policy (with Julius W. Pratt and Vincent De Santis); Depression to Cold War: A History of America from Herbert Hoover to Ronald Reagan (with David G. Coleman); Presidential Profiles: The Kennedy Years; Real-World Nuclear Deterrence: The Making of International Strategy (with David G. Coleman); Nuclear Weapons: A Very Short Introduction; Reagan, Bush, Gorbachev: Revisiting the End of the Cold War (with Norman A. Graebner and Richard Dean Burns); America and the Cold War, 1941-1991: A Realist Interpretation (with Norman A. Graebner and Richard Dean Burns); Globalization & Human Security (with Paul Battersby); and Diplomacy: A Very Short Introduction.
Professor Sue Willis
Sue is Pro Vice-Chancellor (Social Inclusion), Monash University. She is the immediate past President of CHASS. She began her career in Western Australia as a secondary mathematics teacher before moving into curriculum development and then university teaching and research. Her research, curriculum and professional development work have had two foci: mathematics and numeracy, and equity and social justice. Sue has engaged extensively in consultancy and policy work and served on a number of Boards and Steering and Consultative Committees at state and national levels. Sue’s past appointments included terms as President of the Australian Council of Deans of Education (ACDE), Director of the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership Limited (AITSL) and membership of the Board of the VCAA, chairing its Post Compulsory Curriculum and Assessment Committee.