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Purpose and Vision
Level 7 225 Bourke Street Melbourne 3000 Australia
There are hundreds of thousands of young people across the globe who can imagine a different, more sustainable future, but don’t know how to go about it. The Centre for Sustainability Leadership is designed to bridge this gap by empowering young people to make their communities more sustainable.
T: 03 9639 9863 F: 03 8677 2443 E: firstname.lastname@example.org W: www.csl.org.au
We’ve tried to get people in positions of power to care; now we’re going to get people who care into positions of influence.
ABN 78 123 195 488
Contents page 04-05
Executive Director’s Report
Program Managers’ Reports
The Fellowship Program curriculum
2009 Melbourne and Sydney Fellow Profiles
Leadership Team Profiles
Sponsors and Governance
Chair’s Report “There are two primary choices in life; to accept conditions as they exist, or accept the responsibility for changing them.” Denis Waitley, productivity expert
Everyday, leaders around the world in every sector of society are making decisions and taking actions that either edge us closer to sustainability, or push us dangerously closer to the brink of resource depletion and irreversible damage caused by climate change. Now, more than any time in the past, there is a need to understand and manage the social, environmental and economic impacts of decisions. To navigate a path forward, while maintaining a strong focus on what the latest science is telling us, requires strong leadership.
The Centre for Sustainability Leadership is developing the next generation of leaders who understand that it is the sustainability of our planet that underpins our prosperity. These leaders understand that a focus on sustainability does not come at a cost. It creates opportunity. The graduates of our Fellowship Program have proven through their projects and career pursuits that sustainability can translate into increased profits, stronger communities and improved governance. I reflect on 2009 as the year that the Centre for Sustainability Leadership came of age. Having successfully developed and delivered our cutting edge Fellowship Program in Melbourne for four consecutive years, we made the bold decision in 2009 to expand our program both interstate and online.
The Board’s desire to expand the Centre’s influence stems from a strong belief in our programs, coupled with a recognition that the world is desperately in need of strong sustainability leadership. Every sector in every country needs leaders who understand the urgency of whole-of-society change towards sustainability. These change agents need to possess the skills and networks to create that transformation. They are our future community, business and government leaders, the calibre of which the Centre prides itself in attracting and developing. Moving forward, the Centre’s long term strategy is to establish our Fellowship Program in key nodes around the world, and to develop and deliver a transformative online program capable of reaching and growing thousands of sustainability leaders. In 2009 the Centre welcomed more than 50 leaders in Melbourne and Sydney into its alumni, developed a pilot of our online program, reached an audience of over 6,000 people through our Speakers’ Bureau and won a Melbourne Award for the Contribution to Environment category. Such achievements would not be possible without: the commitment of the Centre’s government, corporate and philanthropic U partners the passion and dedication of the Centre’s leadership team and volunteers, U and the vision of the Centre’s Board of Directors. U Thank you for your invaluable contributions and for making 2009 the Centre’s most successful year thus far. Cameron Brown, Chair
2009 was the year that the Centre for Sustainability Leadership came of age.
Executive Director’s Report “We’ve tried to get people in positions of power to care; now we’re going to get people who care into positions of influence.” This powerful quote has been the bedrock of everything we do at the Centre for Sustainability Leadership. It has been my mantra since the earliest days when I started the Centre out of my bedroom and held meetings in laneway cafes, trying to convince others to share my vision. Five years on, the Centre is flourishing. We have hundreds of dedicated and talented volunteers and a strong array of corporate and government supporters. We are running our acclaimed Fellowship Program in Melbourne and Sydney, and are building an online version of the Program to roll out around the world. Our profile and reach has never been higher. Yet the most satisfying achievement is that we are truly delivering on that early promise – to get people who care into positions of influence – and arming them with the skills and networks to create the kind of change our world demands.
In the pages of this annual report you will read about the achievements of our alumni who are putting their sustainability leadership skills into action, day-in and day-out. You will read about the real change being created by sustainability projects that have sprung from the Fellowship Program. You will discover the range, diversity, and incredible skills of our dedicated community of volunteers. And hopefully, like me, you’ll be inspired by the promise, enthusiasm, and commitment of our current crop of participants. Consistent with our pledge to create green leaders in every sector of society, the participants in the Sydney and Melbourne Fellowship Programs are a diverse bunch. Among the engineers and artists, activists and business owners, architects and educators, we have some notable additions: an award winning eco-
furniture designer, a former investment banker, the CEO of a thriving car-share business, an associate to a Supreme Court Judge, a film-maker, our youngest ever participant aged just 18, and our first indigenous participant. These are the people who will lead Australia towards a more sustainable future. This has been a transformational year for the Centre in many ways. Just some of the highlights for 2009 include: U The number of prestigious awards won by the Centre or by people associated with it (see full story on page 16). This year the Centre was awarded Melbourne Community Environmental Organisation of the Year in the prestigious Melbourne Awards. But what we were especially proud of was the every other environmental category that night was won by one of our participants or alumni for projects they have been working on. U Doubling the size and reach of our flagship course through the launch of the Fellowship Program in Sydney. U Appointment of managers to run the Sydney and Melbourne Fellowship Programs. Reports on their highlights for the year can be found in the next few pages. U For the first time, career coaching for every Fellowship Program participant from respected “green collar” career coach Dean Steele-Bennett. U Continued expansion of the alumni program, with high rates of attendance. The extended involvement of our alumni is a critical measure of success. We look forward to holding our first alumni retreat in early 2010. U Appointment of Ariana Bourke, a participant in the Melbourne Fellowship Program, as Online Program Director. Ariana and her team have made great strides in developing a pilot of the online program that will eventually help us dramatically increase our reach and influence. U Continued success of our Speakers’ Bureau, which is helping deliver sustainability messages to thousands of Australians each year.
These achievements could not have been possible without support from a huge range of our supporters. In particular, we welcome new partnerships with the Qantas Foundation, Ian Potter Foundation, Myer Foundation, the Federal Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts, and the NSW Department of Environment Climate Change and Water (DECCW). I am excited to announce that DECCW and EPA Victoria have both committed to being the major sponsors of our respective Fellowship Programs for the next three years. We are incredibly grateful to all our valued sponsors and thank them for their ongoing support. The full list of sponsors can be found on page 66.
We have hundreds of dedicated and talented volunteers and a strong array of corporate, philanthropic and government supporters.
Finally, the Centre could not survive without its vibrant and generous community of volunteers. From the wisdom and experience of our mentors and guest speakers, to the energy and enthusiasm of our youngest office helpers, their contribution is immeasurable. To all our volunteers, mentors, alumni, sponsors, supporters, guest speakers, and friends, a huge thank you. Larissa Brown, Executive Director
Melbourne Report By Melbourne Fellowship Program Manager Stephen McGrail After an intense eight months of leadership training, the 26 participants in this year’s Melbourne Fellowship Program can feel justly proud to have graduated.
“The group’s diverse nature is consistent with the Centre’s vision of creating sustainability leaders in every sector of society.”
With weekly workshops, retreats, mentoring catch-ups and the requirement to work on a major sustainability project, the demands of the Program are great – particularly on top of what’s required from participants’ day jobs.
Along with a participant fresh from high school, this year’s group featured many more people at more advanced stages of their careers. For example, we have the former CEO of Rip Curl Asia and the current CEO of car share business Flexicar. No longer is the course seen as only for talented university students or young professionals.
It was also pleasing that, for the first time, a significant number of past participants returned as guest speakers, including Lauren Wapling, Rachel Lowry, Joel Leske, Michael Chew, Dean Rizetti, and Michaela Lang. This is a very encouraging sign of how the course can grow and strengthen as the graduate network matures.
For the first time, participants were encouraged to aim high and to secure their ‘dream’ mentor either instead of, or in addition to, the regular program mentors. Many had great success in encouraging leaders to join them on their journey. Notable mentors included World Vision chief Tim Costello, VicSuper boss Bob Welsh, City of Melbourne chief designer and former Environmentalist of the Year Rob Adams, leading environmental lawyer Simon Molesworth QC, and Better Place Australia CEO Evan Thornley.
I’d like to acknowledge the continued involvement of Jason Clarke from Minds at Work, as well as the amazing generosity of all speakers and trainers during the year who all donated their time to the program. A special thank you to the 16 journalists who travelled a long way down the Mornington Peninsula to help deliver the media training for the weeklong joint Melbourne-Sydney retreat. In particular thank you to Media Manoeuvres for your support.
It is testimony to the Program’s quality that despite all the hard work, most participants describe it as having been one of the best and most rewarding experiences of their lives. It has been a privilege to help deliver this world-class sustainability leadership program. The Melbourne group is the most diverse group in the Program’s fiveyear history. It included our youngest ever participant (18-year-old Linh Do) and representatives from all sectors - community, business, academia, and government. The group’s diverse nature embodies the Centre’s vision of creating sustainability leaders in every sector of society.
I am also deeply appreciative of all those volunteers who worked so tirelessly this year, particularly Ying Hu, Denton He, and the IT team. It’s also been terrific to have the support of EPA Victoria as our major sponsor. We value your support enormously. Finally, a big thank you to the talented and passionate participants in this year’s Program. I hope you’ve enjoyed the journey as much as I have. I will be following with great interest your progress along the path to a more sustainable future. Stephen McGrail, Melbourne Program Manager
Right: Participants in the Melbourne Fellowship Program.
Participants describe it as one of the best experiences of their lives.
Sydney Report By Sydney Fellowship Program Manager Kate Harris There is always an element of excited anticipation when trying something for the first time. But any apprehensiveness about launching the Fellowship Program in Sydney dissolved as we became aware of the extraordinarily high standard of applications. And nerves were replaced with excitement as the 25 successful applicants gathered in May for their first meeting. It became clear that we had selected an extremely talented group of participants, all of whom have the talent, drive and skills to become future sustainability leaders. We have embraced leaders with vision, passion and the capacity to create change from many walks of life - government, designers, engineers, corporate departments, community activists and entrepreneurs. Their intellect, knowledge base and progress has been inspirational to not only myself but commented on by many of the speakers and mentors.
We ticked off a number of “firsts” for Sydney– our first weekly meeting; our first retreat at Chowder Bay; our first trip to Melbourne to meet our Victorian colleagues at the joint retreat. We were also fortunate to welcome the first Indigenous participant to a Fellowship Program that supported our group awareness to the concept of what sustainability can really look like within Australia. There have been some challenging tasks – such as the public speaking and media “hot seat” which exposed participants to what the real world of media and getting your message across can be like. But as the weeks passed, the confidence and abilities of the participants grew. Sustainability projects began to take shape, giving an opportunity to implement the breadth and diversity of knowledge and skills that they have learnt – such as strategic thinking, behavior change and political lobbying to name just a few.
Project ideas have ranged from a renewable fuels car rally to the design of a new re-usable coffee cup to a campaign to get rid of non-recyclable toilet paper. The projects are all indeed vehicles for change in their own unique way.
A very special thank you must go to the Department of Environment Climate Change and Water for all the wonderful support through their sponsorship, hands on support of the program and belief in our ability to support leaders of the future.
Along the way, we were extremely lucky to have had huge support from the diverse range of speakers and mentors who donated their time, experience and wisdom. Your support was particularly invaluable given that our Program was so new to Sydney.
Our volunteers too have been an invaluable support to my own role and the participants –often behind the scenes.
There have been too many amazing speakers to mention them all individually but some would include Paul Gilding, Greg Bourne from WWF, Simon Sheikh from Get Up! and Anna Rose from the Australian Youth Climate Coalition. The calibre of those who have contributed has been outstanding. We have all been touched by the individual speakers through their stories, heart, passion and abilities of those who contributed to making the Fellowship Program such a transformational process.
And finally again to the participants, it has been incredibly rewarding and affirming to witness the effectiveness of this program in developing the sustainability leaders of today and tomorrow. There have been many successes throughout the program as evidenced by promotions, successful businesses and awards celebrated. I look forward to your continued growth to success and the lasting impact this will have on our future for generations to come. Kate Harris, Sydney Program Manager
We have leaders with vision, passion and capacity from many walks of life
The Fellowship Program curriculum The eight-month Fellowship Program consists of eight key components: U
Weekly workshops: Skills development through facilitated discussion with guest speakers;
Retreats: Three retreats, which focus on intensive development of key skills, including project development, leadership and effective communication and media skills;
Sustainability projects: Participants devise their own creative solution to sustainability challenges and implement their proposal using the skills learned in the workshops;
Mentorship: Participants are matched with some of Australiaâ€™s best business, political, social and environmental leaders to learn from their wisdom and experience;
Online communities: Facilitated learning through online discussion forums, blogs and provision of additional resources;
Coaching: One on one coaching for personalised leadership support;
Networking: Training in networking skills and provision of formal networking opportunities;
Alumni Program: Ongoing professional development, support and inspiration for alumni, with regular social gatherings and structured networking opportunities.
The Fellowship Program curriculum aims to develop participants in the following key sustainability leadership areas: Philosophy of leadership:
Gaining an improved understanding of key moral and philosophical aspects related
Appreciating the value of the individual in creating small high performance teams
to sustainability leadership
Sustainability in Australia:
Identifying personal strengths and weaknesses and targeting transformation
Understanding key sustainability issues and developing a vision of a sustainable
Being a sustainable individual: How to have a tiny ecological footprint and a large cultural footprint
Developing the ability to network and maintain productive professional alliances
Creative thinking and problem solving: Analysing complex problems effectively and finding creative solutions
Understanding the strategies of the worldâ€™s most effective sustainability leaders
and developing a vision and plan for yourself as a sustainability leader
Managing time, prioritising competing demands, and maximising personal
Changing hearts, minds, and behaviour:
Understanding social change and the different approaches to influencing people
Understanding political and societal structures:
Emotional intelligence: Building an emotionally intelligent foundation that fosters confidence to lead
Analysing systems and institutions to understand the ways in which sustainability
leadership can impact the status quo
Understanding the value of mentorship and building relationships with established
History and dynamics of social change:
Appreciating the development of social change movements and the historical
Accessing financial and other resources:
circumstances within which they arose
Developing the tools to attract project funding and non-financial support
Communication and advocacy skills:
Making an impact with presentations and using the media to convey effective
Exploring career options and methods to make the transition between and within
Developing, implementing and evaluating projects
Understanding strategy and using systems to lead successfully
Online Program Report “What if people around the world could gain the skills, support and empowerment to make change happen?” Many of us dream of a more sustainable world, but the pathway to that future often seems far from clear. What if people around the world who share that dream could gain the skills, support and empowerment to make change happen, more effectively and with greater impact? The team at the Centre for Sustainability Leadership is on a mission to do just that through the Online Future Sustainability Leaders Program, a multimedia online sustainability leadership course and social network. The course is being designed to cater to people with the desire to make a difference in the world beyond their current capacity. It will use films, interactive exercises, social networking and mentoring to grow and support the leaders of the future.
2009 has been a momentous year for the development of this ambitious project. The year started with a trip to the UK to film inspirational interviews and case studies with the UK’s top sustainability leaders. Interviews with the likes of Jonathan Porritt and George Monbiot will be used to create content for the online program. We then created a pilot communications module of the course for the purpose of testing the concept with focus groups of upand-coming change makers. The much commended, 30 minute pilot film incorporated footage of Londonbased communications expert Ed Gillespie and case studies of local and international sustainability projects. The months since have been spent working on the business, product and marketing plans. The plans detail how we will make a splash on the global scene with a multimedia course that appeals to a broad range of young people with a passion for change.
As part of the process we’ve spoken to many past applicants of the Fellowship Program, current Fellowship Program participants, business leaders, young professionals, high school administrators and students, and University staff and students. Our digital survey alone reached over 200 young people in one week, giving us valuable and inspiring insights into people who are motivated to make a difference. Week after week throughout September and October successful grants rolled in, and the reality of creating a world-leading program went from being a great idea with a small team of advocates to something that will actually happen, with budgets, timelines and deadlines.
Simultaneously our Sydney-based filmmaker Simon Duncan-Watt has been following five inspiring individuals who are on their own change-making journey. Some of our heroes include Anna Rose who ran Australia’s Power Shift event, Simon Sheikh who has been powering forward as the Director of Get Up and Amanda McKenzie who launched Youth Decide. Our film crew will be heading to Copenhagen for the 2009 United Nations Climate Change Conference to capture the stories of these and many other inspiring change makers. Looking forward for 2010 we are working on digital platform strategy and development, working with our digital and brand agencies to bring the vision to life, developing all content for the course including film and interactive lessons, and continuing to plan for the launch of the program. It’s an exciting time!
The achievements of the year would not have been possible without the generous support of our financial supporters including the Federal Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts; Qantas Foundation; The Myer Foundation; The Ian Potter Foundation; auDA Foundation; The Fred P Archer Charitable Trust managed by Trust Company Limited; Give2Asia; The British Council of Australia and Canon.
The program will use films, interactive exercises, social networking and mentoring to grow and support the leaders of the future.
I’d like to send a huge thanks to the online team volunteers including Gabriela Ramos, Ric Falconer, Lumaine D’Souza, Cheryl Shea, Paul Campobasso, Sally White, David Mann and the dozens of volunteers within the various project teams. Without your help, we wouldn’t have achieved all that we have today. Ariana Bourke, Online Program Director
Awards Centre takes the lead in environmental awards The Centre for Sustainability Leadership boosted its already strong profile this year through the numerous community, business, and environmental awards the organisation and its participants received. The Centre and several of its talented fellows and graduates were honoured at the Melbourne City Council’s annual Melbourne Awards, which recognises contributions to Melbourne’s profile and community. The Centre and its affiliates scooped the environmental categories, taking home all three awards. The Centre won the Community Organisation Division award for its contribution to the environment, Fellowship participant Ellen Sandell won the individual category, while alumnus Rachel Lowry won the corporate category for her work with Zoos Victoria.
Ellen, who is Victorian Director of the Australian Youth Climate Coalition and who joined the Fellowship Program this year, became interested in the environment while at Melbourne University. In 2007 Ellen launched the Leadership in Environmental Action Program (LEAP), an annual four-day environmental leadership conference for high school students. She also founded the Switched on Schools program, providing students with information and resources on climate change. Earlier this year she was also jointly named the Young Environmentalist of the Year at the prestigious national Banksia Awards.
Rachel Lowry graduated from the Fellowship program in 2008, and was awarded for her efforts in the campaign she developed while in the Fellowship Program, “We’re Calling on You”, in collaboration with Zoos Victoria. The campaign encourages Victorians to recycle their old mobile phones, and draws attention to the fact that metallic ore coltan, currently used in mobile phones, is being mined in gorilla habitats in the African mountains. A finalist in the Environmental section of the Melbourne Awards was 2009 Fellowship Program participant, Monique Conheady, who was recognised for her Flexicar business, a car sharing service dedicated to sustainable transport throughout Melbourne. Monique also recently received the Hudson Private and Corporate Sector Award of the Victorian section of the 2009 Telstra Business Women’s Awards for this innovative program.
Centre for Sustainability Leadership founder Larissa Brown was also recognised in 2009 as the Australian Geographic Young Conservationist of the Year. Larissa receives this award for her work with the Centre over the past five years, as well as her contribution to various environmental boards such as Environmental Victoria, and the Minister’s Reference Council on Climate Change Adaptation. In 2009, Larissa was also recognised as one of Australia’s 20 top environmentalists by G Magazine. These prestigious acknowledgments indicate the Centre’s continuing relevance and contribution towards a sustainable future, and provide drive and focus for our Fellowship participants and graduates.
Above left: With Lord Mayor Robert Doyle are (left to right) Chair Cameron Brown, Executive Director Larissa Brown, participant Ellen Sandell and alumnus Rachel Lowry Right: Cameron Brown at the Melbourne Awards.
The Centre won Community Environmental Organisation of the Year in the prestigious Melbourne Awards. But what we were especially proud of was that every other environmental category was won by one of our participants or alumni for the projects they have been working on.
Speakers’ Bureau The Centre for Sustainability Leadership Speakers’ Bureau provides you with access to Australia’s top leaders and a network of the best and brightest minds in the country. Our speakers have remarkable, inspiring stories to tell and are available for hire at your next event or workshop.
Amanda McKenzie: Amanda is one of Australia’s rising environmental leaders. She has worked in climate change law and policy and attended the UN Climate Negotiations in Bali in 2007 as an advisor and youth representative to the Federal Government’s delegation. Amanda is the 2009 Australian Environmentalist of the Year and Co-Director of the Australian Youth Climate Coalition.
> Sustainability leadership > The current environment and leadership > Business and sustainability > Climate change > Environmental law > Rural communities and sustainability > Creative arts and sustainability > Green jobs > Palm oil crisis > Wildlife conservation > Sustainability in the home > Youth action and climate change > Climate change policy > Climate justice and human rights > Behavioural change
Dan Adams: Dan, at age 18 and with no relevant experience, was the organiser of the Make Poverty History Concert, which inspired 50,000 Australians to sign up to the campaign to end extreme poverty and saw the concert’s message reach a global audience of 20 million people. Dan, the 2008 Young Victorian of the Year, is currently working with the Australian Youth Climate Coalition to reframe the climate change debate.
Larissa Brown: Larissa is the 2008 Young Environmentalist of the Year and founder of the Centre for Sustainability Leadership. Larissa participated in the Prime Minister’s 2020 Summit, was selected to represent Asian and Pacific youth at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Bali and was named as one of Melbourne’s most influential 100 people and one of Melbourne’s ten most influential environmentalists by the Age Magazine in 2007.
Rachel Lowry: Rachel is a young sustainability leader who is wildly passionate about wildlife and the need to conserve our world’s biodiversity. A trained zoologist, Rachel is General Manager Community Conservation for Melbourne Zoo, sits on the board of the International Zoo Educators and is the brainchild behind the award winning mobile phone recycling program, They’re Calling On You, which helps protect gorillas in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Ellen Sandell: Ellen, the Victorian Director of the Australian Youth Climate Coalition, is the 2009 Young Environmentalist of the Year. Ellen runs AYCC’s national education program, Switched on Schools, and is the founder of the award winning Leadership in Environmental Action Program (LEAP), an innovative environmental leadership conference for high school students. Glenn Bartlett: Glenn is an ex advertising man, turned travelling palm oil crusader, who now works as a consultant illuminating the business case for sustainability. Glenn is a graduate of the Centre for Sustainability Leadership Fellowship Program and now sits on that organisation’s board. Glenn is an energetic, inspiring and at times amusing speaker with a full understanding of the sustainability crisis facing our planet today.
To have a young, passionate and informed sustainability leader speak at your event, workplace or school, please contact: Adeline Lee, Centre for Sustainability Leadership, 03 9639 9863 or email@example.com
Fellow Profile - Ellen Sandell, 2009 Melbourne Fellowship Program participant Ellen leaps into environmental action Ellen Sandell, Victorian Director of the Australian Youth Climate Coalition, talks fast. She gives the impression of someone who aims to accomplish a great deal - and as quickly as possible. Winner of several leadership and environmentalist awards including the Pride of Australia medal and recently, Australian Young Environmentalist of the Year, Ellen has been committed to sustainability since she first began volunteering during her university days. In 2007, after completing a Science and Arts degree at the University of Melbourne, she became the university’s Environment Officer and played a pivotal role in getting the university to commit to carbon neutrality.
Since graduating, Ellen has been heavily involved in the Australian Youth Climate Coalition and was their youth ambassador for the UN climate change negotiations in Bali and Poland. She is passionate about encouraging young people to contribute to solutions about climate change. Her award-winning leadership conference for high school students, the Leadership in Environmental Action Program (LEAP), is held each year in September. For Ellen, the choice to join the Fellowship Program came not simply from a desire to deepen her skill base, but to meet like-minded young people from various other fields and backgrounds. “It was about working with people who are involved in sustainability but in fields that I’m not familiar with,” said Ellen.
“It’s been great to meet people with the same ideals as me, but who work in different areas, such as business.” Ellen says she has benefited greatly from her two mentors, Greens councillor David Risstrom and Tim Costello, CEO of World Vision Australia. “It’s good to have them as sounding boards, and people to offer advice.”
When asked what she hopes to accomplish in five years, Ellen laughs: “I’m hoping that we’ll have solved climate change in five years and we’ll all be taking a holiday!” But more realistically, “I hope that we’ll have created systemic change across all sectors of society”.
As part of the program, Ellen expanded on her project, Switched on Schools, a youth education and empowerment program she coordinates within the AYCC. “It’s a program to engage high schools in climate change and empower them to take action – not just in their own communities, but in the greater political realm,” she explains. “We have resources for them to use to learn about climate change, and encourage them to get involved in projects like Power Shift and Youth Decide.”
From Left: Ellen Sandell with joint winners of the Young Environmentalist of the Year Award, Anna Rose and Amanda McKenzie.
I hope that weâ€™ll have created systemic change across all sectors of society
Fellow Profile – Monique Conheady, 2009 Melbourne Fellowship Program participant
Rising fast in eco-business Rising ‘eco-preneur’ Monique Conheady had already achieved an amazing amount when she decided to join the Fellowship Program. The CEO of her community car-share service, Flexicar, Monique has worked as an engineer and project manager on various infrastructure projects in Melbourne, as well as in New York, London and Cairo. Graduating from University of Melbourne with honours in engineering and arts, Monique cofounded Flexicar in 2005 as an attempt to find a more environmentally and socially sustainable way of doing business. “I always wanted to do my own thing,” says Monique. “My father was a small business owner, I grew up in a family of small business people. I was interested in business that had positive environmental and social outcomes.”
After five years of building up Flexicar, Monique decided to apply for the Fellowship Program for a chance to plan her next move. “I’ve had my head in the Flexicar fan for a few years. Now that it’s successful, I was interested in having some conversations in the sustainability space, and reflection and planning for the next stage of my career.” Having a business/ entrepreneurial background, Monique found that the Fellowship Program gave her the opportunity to familiarise herself with other sectors such as campaigning and grassroots, governmental and financial. ”The program helped me think about interdisciplinary action that needs to happen. It lets you look at how all parts of society need to work together to achieve sustainability.”
Monique also made connections with others within the business world. Her mentor, Evan Thornley, CEO of Better Place, became a useful business contact. “He’s really smart, and he’s been able to hone in succinctly on key issues for me.” She also worked on a project with Fellowship Program colleague and entrepreneur Adam von Einem, recently the CEO of Rip Curl Asia. “We’re looking at doing a sustainable line of clothing. It’s fun and interesting to work on a new business idea with someone who has a background in sustainable business.”
Monique is a finalist for the Telstra Business Women’s Awards of 2009 and a committee member for the Moreland Energy Foundation. She hopes to be a serial entrepreneur and has plans to start a new business. “I expect that in five years I’ll have handed over Flexicar to someone up and coming within the company, or have it merge with a bigger company,” she says. “I’d like to get positions on business and corporate boards. I’d like to have a higher profile in the business community and be able to bring sustainability to that sector in Australia.”
I was interested in planning for the next stage of my career
Fellow Profile – Oliver Costello, 2009 Sydney Fellowship Program participant Indigenous perspective on sustainability Oliver Costello is rapt that joining the Fellowship Program has allowed him to combine his passion for Indigenous issues with his other great love – environmental sustainability. Oliver, the first Indigenous participant in the Fellowship Program, believes the program has helped open his eyes to new ways of generating interest and commitment to sustainability. It’s not as if Oliver isn’t busy enough. Undergoing a BA in Adult Education and Community Management at The University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), Oliver is enthusiastically involved in activities such as Get Up!, a community advocacy group where he works mainly on Indigenous campaigns, and the Research Unit at the Jumbunna Indigenous House of Learning, UTS where he works as a research assistant on the Land Alive media project. This media project spotlights the biodiversity strategies used on Aboriginal land as a way of strengthening Aboriginal culture and conservation outcomes. 24
Oliver has combined his passions for advocacy of issues concerning the Indigenous community with his passion for environmental sustainability in his current Fellowship project ‘Fire Sticks’. The Fire Sticks pilot project holds a vision to support the use of Aboriginal knowledge in natural resource management by focusing on traditional Aboriginal fire management knowledge and practices. “While I’ve enjoyed working in diverse areas I was interested in focusing more energy on highlighting the role of Indigenous knowledge in tackling sustainability challenges,” says Oliver. In particular his project focuses on how fire management systems of Northern Australia’s Aboriginal communities can influence the reinvigoration of these practices in NSW. In this he’s drawing on the inherent sustainability of traditional
Aboriginal land management practices to both minimise the severity of fire outbreaks and to support ongoing biodiversity. “The Fellowship has given me an opportunity to concentrate on my passions while helping develop many diverse leadership skills,” he said. “I’ve really benefited from engaging with people in the program, sharing ideas, opening up conversations. One thing that’s been really interesting is experiencing how different the dialogue is between different industries. It’s been a real eye-opener and something I can take with me as I further cultivate my management skills.” Oliver’s hope for the future is to create change by influencing socially inclusive sustainable communities and organisations, particularly through more community engagement and participation.
“In the end I hope to influence best practice in developing and managing sustainability, particularly with Indigenous communities. I believe that community engagement, participation and supporting individuals to create change, are the way to go.” Oliver is excited about the future – particularly with his first child on the way. “Had I been asked five years ago what I’d be doing currently, I couldn’t have told you. What I now know is that apart from wanting to be a supportive and loving dad, I’m really committed to working with people individually and in groups to develop more sustainable systems that can build a better future.”
I was interested in highlighting the role of Indigenous knowledge in tackling sustainability challenges
Project Profile - Renewable Fuels Race As part of the Fellowship Program, each participant works on a project to provide a creative solution to sustainability challenges.
Renewable Race Hits Top Gear Rachel Mimmo came to Australia from the UK in April 2008 when she gave up her job as a corporate lawyer in Sheffield. Rachel and her husband, who works in sustainability, decided to travel around Australia by car for eight months.
With Fellowship Program colleagues Alex Graham and Lauren Rogge, Rachel is organising a car rally with a difference. All entrants in the 2500 km rally from Mildura to the Great Barrier Reef will be running on alternative fuels.
As a way of lessening their carbon footprint they had the novel idea of using waste cooking oil to fuel their epic 37,000 km car journey. The couple stopped off at fish and chip shops and Thai restaurants across the country whenever they needed to top up. (You can read more about their ecoadventure on www.ozonabatteredfish. blogspot.com.)
Through the car rally, to be held in April 2010, Rachel hopes to make Australians more aware of what is available as an alternative to petrol or diesel.
Rachel’s battered fish adventure has been the inspiration for one of the more unique projects to emerge from the Sydney Fellowship Program.
‘‘I think there is a fantastic opportunity to generate a greater shift in the number of people using renewable fuel and alternative technology,” she said. Alex Graham is an environmentalist currently working as a program coordinator for the Australian Conservation Foundation. She came on board the project to deliver a media strategy and produce a documentary about the rally itself.
‘‘I hope that through working on this project, I can further develop my understanding of the role media plays in campaigning and also have some new skills under my belt.’’
Rachel, who runs climate change awareness projects at the Nature Conservation Council of NSW, will be a participant in the rally, driving the car she calls “The Battered Fish”.
Alex is full of praise for the Fellowship Program, which she calls ‘rewarding and inspiring’. ”In addition to visioning and strategic thinking, studying ‘leadership’ is very much a personal journey; one that is entwined with who I am and what I believe.”
She is also full of praise for the Fellowship Program.
Lauren Rogge is responsible for the research and logistics components of the project. She will be conducting research to be presented on the website, developing the rally route and the activities for participants, as well as designing the rules of the race. Lauren currently works as a consultant with Ernst & Young, where she works on projects that involve the verification of greenhouse gas emissions from organisations across a range of industries.
“It has been a brilliant networking opportunity for me, coming from the UK and not knowing anyone in the environmental world here, meeting people who are passionate about climate change,” she said. “The media training sessions have been fantastic and I have learnt how to develop strategies for programs and how to network with people from varied backgrounds. It will be a real help in terms of organising the car rally.”
Main photo: (Left to right) Alex Graham, Lauren Rogge and Rachel Mimmo with “The Battered Fish”.
The project is a fun and different way to raise awareness around the potential fuel technologies available.
Project Profile - Urban Farming As part of the Fellowship Program, each participant works on a project to provide a creative solution to sustainability challenges.
Green oasis for the urban jungle Creating a green oasis and fresh food farm in the city jungle is the ambitious aim of a group of Melbourne urban professionals.
“Melbourne has ambitions to be a green city,” said Pippa, an architect and part-time lecturer in environmental design.
Pippa Howard, Alex Houlston and Nicky Scheltus have teamed up on a project to prove the viability of establishing a fresh food farm in the Melbourne CBD. They worked with fellow participant Russell Hughes, whose architectural design work on urban farming has been a central inspiration.
“One of the biggest single steps towards improving the sustainability of the city would be to create an urban farm so that it can reduce its reliance on external foodstuffs.
The group has also been inspired by the City of Melbourne’s success in turning other dead spaces, such as laneways and industrial areas, into active and vibrant zones that are an iconic part of Melbourne’s culture. The aim is to make the urban farm fully sustainable and self-contained, providing its own water and converting organic waste into energy through the use of a bio-digester.
“Imagine rooftop gardens and other dead spaces being put to use growing fresh fruit and vegetables for sale to city dwellers.” The project group has been scanning the Melbourne CBD for suitable “dead space” and has identified the car park at the Queen Victoria Market as an ideal site. The group is building the business case for developing an urban farm on the QVM car park site and hopes to engage the City of Melbourne and other stakeholders in taking it to reality.
“The Queen Victoria Markets site is a fantastic case study of how you can make a city much more self-reliant in terms of food supply, as well as creating a vibrant and exciting urban space,” said Alex, who has a strong background in urban design.
“The goal would be to provide food products to vendors at the market for a management fee, meaning we would not compete with existing stallholders and we would save on transportation costs and emissions. Examples would include herbs and mushrooms.”
“The car park is currently 2.5 hectares of dead space but is right next door to Flagstaff Gardens, which is Melbourne’s most utilised green space.
Nicky, who works in Telstra’s Corporate Environment Group, said the project hoped to raise awareness about the potential for urban farming in the Melbourne CBD.
“Our case study will examine opportunities such as building a lightweight, tiered structure on top of the car park, or potentially redeveloping the site to the community’s advantage, with a rooftop produce garden, bio-digester and cogeneration boiler.
“While we are using the Queen Victoria Market as a case study, we think there could be great opportunities in many other dead spaces in the CBD. We are also looking at other examples around the world – including a rooftop farm in New York City – and how they might be adapted for Melbourne.”
From Left: Alex Houlston, Nicky Scheltus and Pippa Howard examine plans of the Melbourne CBD
Imagine rooftop gardens and other dead spaces being put to use growing fresh fruit and vegetables for sale to city dwellers
Project Profile - Wipe It Out As part of the Fellowship Program, each participant works on a project to provide a creative solution to sustainability challenges.
Getting Bottom Line Results At the age of 21, Aaron Fuller, Fellowship Program participant and creator of Wipe It Out, had an epiphany.
Aaron’s passion for sustainability has manifested itself in the project Wipe It Out, which aims to rid Australia of nonrecycled toilet paper.
“I realised that working 80 hour weeks was not for me and spent the next four years travelling the globe.” Aaron studied property for three years after finishing school but ended up working, ‘crazy hours, riding the real estate boom’.
‘Every year, we chop down 98 million trees to make toilet paper. That’s 200 trees every minute, just to wipe our backsides,’ Aaron states passionately. Wipe It Out aims to put a stop to that while allowing Australians to wipe their backsides in comfort. He wants to ensure, “the planet remains a cool place to be for future humans, plants and animals alike. We are realists. We are not asking for people to be toilet trained”. He aims to see toilet paper produced from a sustainable source. “Why cut down old growth forests or even sustainably managed forests when we can use recycled paper?”
On returning to Australia, he decided to change direction and obtained a Diploma in Marketing and has spent the last seven years in Analytics, Marketing and Sustainability. Aaron is due to complete his Masters degree in Environmental Management this December. A fellow student, who had set up his own green agency, suggested that Aaron join the Fellowship Program. “I felt that I was ready to take a leadership path that allowed me to go beyond talking about my passion for the environment and drive meaningful change for the world. Cheesy, I know, but it’s true.”
Joining Aaron in the Wipe It Out project are Fellowship Program participants Lucian McElwain, who is responsible for governance and regulation, Meg Ivory, Campaigning, and Paul Ferris, who is the Arts Coordinator. Wipe It Out will utilise social media, stunts, and celebrities to communicate a simple and clear message in a fun and cheeky style.
The campaign’s action asks will be a series of consumer pledges. Through these pledges, Wipe It Out will generate and demonstrate the kind of demand for recycled toilet paper that will empower manufacturers, retailers and government to take action. In this way, Wipe It Out sees itself as working with industry and government, not against them. Some of Aaron’s facts: currently, only 5% of Australia’s toilet paper is recycled. Globally, 98 million trees a year – 200 every minute – are cut down to wipe our backsides. Chopping down trees sends 50,000 species packing from the planet – forever – every single year. In addition, every tonne of recycled paper saves 31,380 litres of water and 400 kg of greenhouse gases. We destroy 50,000 species a year due to deforestation, and cut down 270,000 trees a day for toilet paper. In five years, the Wipe It Out team hope to have rid Australia (and perhaps the world) of non-recycled toilet paper. Check out the website, www.wipeitout.com.au, for the science and stats supporting the campaign, you tube clips and twitter blogs.
The Fellowship Program has changed Aaron’s way of thinking, “I have learnt the power of thinking laterally, of being creative, being humble, working with an eclectic passionate bunch of very smart people”. Aaron has enjoyed every aspect of the program but in particular ‘the investment in learning, personal growth, diplomacy, fairness, the range of amazing reputable speakers, the mentor program, the coaching sessions, the project, the retreats, the readings. Everything actually…” Through the Fellowship Program, Aaron has been able to establish his own firm, Shiftlock, (www.shiftlock. com.au) which is a change agency. “I already have a few initiatives through the company and aim to be working in the business 100% by the end of 2010, creating change that leads to a meaningful future for as many people as I can work with. I am passionate about purpose, and work with aligning what we do with why we do it.”
Project team: Megan Ivory, Lucian McElwain and Aaron Fuller
Every year, we chop down 98 million trees to make toilet paper. Thatâ€™s 200 trees every minute, just to wipe our backsides
Project Profiles – 2008 updates 2008 projects continue to make an impact Last year’s annual report highlighted a number of Fellowship Program projects that were making waves. Here we see how they have progressed in the ensuing 12 months and discover that they are continuing to make a great impact.
They’re Calling On You A homegrown program to protect African gorillas by recycling mobile phones has proved a huge success. “They’re Calling On You” was founded by Rachel Lowry, Melbourne Zoo’s General Manager, Community Conservation Officer, as her sustainability project during the 2008 Fellowship Program. A metallic ore known as coltan is an essential component of every mobile phone. However, the mining of coltan in the Congo River Basin is leading to rapid deforestation and a dramatic decrease in the population of mountain gorillas.
Rachel hoped that her recycling campaign would collect 10,000 phones in its first year. Twelve months after launch, Rachel is ecstatic about the results. “Melbourne Zoo alone has collected 13,000 phones and it has been picked up by 13 other zoos across Australia. It has also expanded into every Bendigo Bank branch in Victoria,” Rachel said. Expanding They’re Calling On You nationally has seen an additional 20,000 mobile phones collected and recycled. Money raised through the program is also used to support primate conservation work undertaken by the Jane Goodall Institute.
The campaign has received widespread recognition, including Melbourne Zoo winning the corporate “Contribution To The Environment” award at this year’s Melbourne Awards. Rachel says this external recognition has been as important as the number of phones collected and recycled. “Hundreds of media articles have been published and it has prompted foreign correspondents to travel to Africa and report on the situation,” said Rachel. Another success of the program has been the impact on the industries that were linked to the mining of coltan.
“One of the indicators of success of the program was the AMTA (Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association) being prompted to engage with the campaign and debate on the coltan mining issue. Almost monthly they have addressed this issue in press releases and reports.” Rachel reflected on the experiences gained during the Fellowship Program “The Fellowship Program has been a huge help because it encourages you to think big. The media skills that I learnt during that mid-year retreat have also been very helpful.” Further information can be found at www.zoo.org.au/Calling_on_You
Below: Rachel Lowry at the launch of Theyâ€™re Calling On You Top right: The Just Change team (left to right): Kathryn Bowen, Roland Dillon, Michaela Lang, Kati Thompson, Dougall McInnes and Bonnie Learmonth. Bottom right: Jai Allison with Spokes in the Wheel participants
Project Profiles – 2008 updates Last year’s annual report highlighted a number of Fellowship Program projects that were making waves. Here we see how they have progressed in the ensuing 12 months and discover that they are continuing to make a great impact.
Just Change Just Change is a project that tackles the issue of energy efficient housing for low income renters. There is a large pool of funding available to support household energy efficiency activities. However the schemes and rebates are complicated, difficult to access and change frequently. Just Change aims to change that by helping low income renters navigate through the system. Late last year Just Change launched a pilot scheme which provided energy efficient retrofits to 10 low-income rental homes, worth around $1500, for free.
Now the results are in and Roland Dillon, a founding member of the project and alumnus of the Fellowship Program, says the group is delighted with its progress. “The basic findings were that every house improved in comfort. Most reported a reduction in energy usage,” he says. Just Change, which is supported by Sustainability Victoria and the Real Estate Institute of Victoria, is looking to maximise opportunities for the scheme by looking at potential partnerships with peak bodies, government agencies and community organisations.
Roland and his team have also identified a number of issues to be addressed before the scheme could be expanded, including the need for specific incentives for landlords and the reluctance of some tenants to engage with property managers and owners on the issue. Just Change has had a significant amount of external recognition for its innovative program. The Age newspaper published an article in March this year and it has also been featured on the Green Renters blog, which gives tips to people who have difficulty in making eco-friendly and energy efficient changes to their places of residence.
Renew Magazine, which focuses on sustainable living, published a profile on Just Change and covered one of the low-income earners who had made a successful transition to a more energy efficient lifestyle with the help of Just Change. Roland says the Just Change team has been approached by several potential partner organisations about collaborating on future programs. Further information can be found at www.justchangeaustralia.org
Spokes in the Wheel Fellowship Program alumni Georgina Morrow and Jai Allison are quietly chuffed by the success of their Spokes in the Wheel project. Launched last September, the program to teach young Sudanese refugees how to ride bikes has doubled in size and been adopted by Engineers Without Borders as one of its local projects. Georgina says the idea behind the program is simple. “For most Australians, owning and riding a bike is part and parcel of life,” she says.
“For a young refugee from a place like Sudan, it can be a life changing experience. We are also keen to introduce the cycling culture to their families. Access to a bike can give the participants access to a sustainable and affordable form of transport, connect them to other communities and promote healthy living.”
Spokes in the Wheel works with the Sudanese Australian Integrated Learning (SAIL) Program and hopes to integrate the program with other bike riding initiatives.
Donated bicycles are renovated by a team of volunteers to ensure they are safe. Groups of ten kids – aged around ten – spend four weeks learning the basics of cycling. So far about 60 kids have passed through the basic course.
“The kids say it gives them a real sense of freedom and you can tell they are having fun just by the smiles on their faces,” she says.
This Christmas, every participant in the program will be given a bicycle to keep.
Georgina says the feedback from the children and their families has been fantastic.
“It’s also important that we involve the parents in the process. Some parents have a concern about the safety aspects of riding, or have never encouraged it because they can’t afford to buy a bike or they simply haven’t been exposed to cycling. “Once they see the impact it has on their kids and that we are managing the safety aspects, they are generally much more supportive.” Spokes in the Wheel accepts donations of second-hand bikes and organises teams of volunteers to fix them up and bring them up to a safe standard. For further information on Spokes in the Wheel contact Georgina Morrow on 0448 026 032.
Volunteers dig in deep We could not function without the assistance of these talented, inspiring individuals Volunteers are an invaluable asset and can be found within every facet of our organisation, whether they are involved with the development and management of the Fellowship Program, helping out in the office or contributing by way of financial support. In fact, several critical parts of the program could not possibly function without the time and assistance volunteered by many of these talented, inspiring individuals. This year the number of volunteers contributing to the Centre has exceeded 100, and the total volunteer hours contributed is estimated to be worth at least $1 million.
It is a credit to the Centre that a number of those who currently occupy positions within our organisation or contribute to the Fellowship Program are graduates from previous years. Of special mention this year are the volunteers who have assisted with the inaugural launch of the Fellowship Program in Sydney. Under the direction of Kate Harris, the first 24 Sydney-based participants began their journey in sustainability, and the program has been a success thus far. The initiation of the Sydney Fellowship helps the Centre in terms of expanding the size and reach of the program, as well as the profile and influence of the organisation.
Guest Speakers and Mentors
Staff, Board Members and Sponsors
Throughout the program, Fellowship participants are invited to learn from guest speakers and form relationships with mentors, all of whom freely volunteer their time. Some of these guest speakers, such as influential creative thinker Jason Clarke of Minds At Work, have been with the Centre since the program began in 2005. Guest speakers this year have come from a variety of increasingly highprofile backgrounds and professions, including government, academia, business, consulting and not-for-profit sectors.
The Centre is maintained by a very motivated group of staff, board members and supporters, who run the office, co-ordinate the Fellowship Program as well as the upcoming online program, and provide the organisation with financial stability and direction. As with guest speakers and mentors, several members of the board and volunteers are graduates from previous years who have emerged from the Fellowship Program with the hope of giving something back to the organisation. We have a number of sponsors from a range of not-for-profit, government and business organisations.
Fellowship participants are encouraged to choose a mentor whose career and field of interest are suited to their own, and it is up to the mentor and mentee themselves to decide how to communicate and how often. It is an indication of the value and influence of the program that so many of Australiaâ€™s best minds are willing to give up their time to pass on their knowledge and experience.
Dr Peter Ellyard Chairman Preferred Futures Institute
Michaela Lang Co-founder and Director Just Change Australia
Lauren Wapling Fellowship Program alumnus
Penny Mulvey Co-Director Positive Media
Larissa Brown Executive Director Centre for Sustainability Leadership
Dr James Gifford Executive Director United Nations Principles for Responsible
Professor Frank Fisher Convenor of Graduate Programs National Centre for
Joel Leske Corporate Affairs and Environment Advisor Kmart
Dr Peter Hayward Program Director – Master of Management (Strategic Foresight)
Sean Willmore Founding Director Thin Green Line
Marcus Godinho Chief Executive Officer FareShare
Robyn White Principal Advisor – Innovation Economy Department of Innovation,
Tim Sonnreich Senior Adviser Office of the Premier, Victorian Government
Industry and Regional Development
Ian Porter Chief Executive Officer | Alternative Technology Association
Dr Peter Christoff Vice-President Australian Conservation Foundation
Dean Rizetti Campaign Officer Australian Labor Party
Edwin Mongan Global Practice Leader – Climate Change and Energy BHP Billiton
Caitriona Fay Program Manager Ian Potter Foundation
Francis Grey Research Manager – SAM Australia and New Zealand Sustainable
Leanne Bradley Philanthropy Executive Save the Children
Luke Taylor Festival Director Sustainable Living Foundation
Fraser Brindley Production and Consumption Campaigner Environment Victoria
Les Robinson Director Enabling Change
Jose Ramos Lecturer – Global Citizenship: Corporate and Community Sustainability
Brett de Hoedt Mayor Hootville Communication
National Centre for Sustainability
Dr Graeme Pearman Director Pearman Consulting
Rachel Lowry General Manager, Community Conservation Zoos Victoria, Centre for
Danny Vadasz Director of Marketing Australian Conservation Foundation
Sustainability Leadership (Board Member)
Tony Cutcliffe Director The Eureka Project
Kirsten Larsen Policy Research Manager Victorian Eco-Innovation Lab (VEIL),
Hon. Tom Roper Chair Australian Sustainable Built Environment Council / Climate
University of Melbourne
Tiffany Crawford Corporate Solicitor City of Melbourne
Associate Professor Don Garden University of Melbourne
Nic Culnane Project Director – Docklands Infrastructure VicUrban
Tim Cotter Principal Awake
Felicity Large Event and Staff Coordinator Clothing Exchange
Jon Ward Manager, Environmental Policy Toyota Australia
Mary Crooks Executive Director Victorian Women’s Trust
Scott Delzoppo Group Sustainability Manager Foster’s Group
Phillip Sutton Co-founder and Board Member Safe Climate Australia
Tanya Ha Author, television presenter, and campaigner
Mike Waller Chairman Sustainability Victoria
Nic Frances Executive Chairman Cool NRG International
Kate Nicolazzo General Manager – Centre for Innovation and Sustainability
Kelly O’Shannassy Chief Executive Officer Environment Victoria
Victorian Employers’ Chamber of Commerce and Industry Michael Chew Fellowship Program alumni Lisa Smith Minds at Work
Larissa Brown Executive Director Centre for Sustainability Leadership
Anna Rose Co-Director Australian Youth Climate Coalition
Petrea Bradford Carbon Markets Manager Origin Energy
Les Robinson Director Enabling Change
Stephen Shepherd Chairman, Shirlaws Global Business Coaching Shirlaws
Peter Cosier Executive Director Wentworth Group
Professor Stuart Hill Adjunct Professor Foundation Chair of Social Ecology
Mandy Holloway Leadership Trainer, Consultant & Speaker Holloway
School of Education University of Western Sydney
Janine Cahill CEO & Innovation Designer Future Journeys
Winsome Matthews Indigenous social ecologist
Greg Bourne CEO WWF
Dr Mark Diesendorf Deputy Director Institute of Environmental Studies,
Simon Sheikh National Director GetUp!
University of NSW
Murray Hogarth Director The 3rd degree
Brian Moran Principal Managing Values
Jenni Whitnall Associate Director, Sustainability, Climate Change & Water
Ben Kneppers Sustainability Consultant Edge environment
Sue Lennox Co Founder / CEO OzGreen
Victor Steffensen Project Manager Traditional Knowledge Revival Pathways
Penelope Howarth Former head of the World Food Program, Malawi
Professor Stuart White Director Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of
Roz Hall Director Business and Community Programs Department of
Environment, Climate Change & Water
Jeff Angel Executive Director Total Environment Centre (TEC)
Siobhan Toohill General Manager, Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability
Terri â€“ Ann Johnson CEO Clean Up Australia
Jon Dee Founder & Chairman Do Something
David Hodes Managing Director Ensemble Partners
Lyn Goldsworthy Director Campaign Essentials
Rebecca Harcourt Indigenous Programs Santa Sabina College
John Jutsen Executive Director, Business Development Energetics
Professor Dexter Dunphy Emeritus Professor, School of Management
David Morrissey Director CSR Sydney
University of Technology, Sydney
Paul Gilding Independent writer and advisor
Evan Thornley Chief Executive Officer Better Place Australia
Dan Atkins Co-Founder and Director Shaper Group
Bob Welsh Chief Executive Officer VicSuper
Marcus Godinho Chief Executive Officer FareShare
Tony Wood Director – Clean Energy Program (Australia) Clinton Climate Initiative
Brett de Hoedt Mayor Hootville Communication
Rob Gell Media personality and President Greening Australia
Hamish Walker Manager, Sustainable Resources Department of Sustainability and
Rupert Posner Chief Executive Officer The Climate Group
Tanya Ha Author, television presenter, and campaigner
Robert Larocca Consultant CPR Communications and Public Relations
Janette O’Neil Global Head of Sustainability and Environment NAB
Ian Porter Chief Executive Officer Alternative Technology Association
David Risstrom Barrister and former Green Councillor Melbourne City Council
Professor Frank Fisher Convenor of Graduate Programs National Centre for
Tim Costello Chief Executive Officer
Sustainability (Swinburne University)
World Vision Australia
Dr. Peter Ellyard Chairman Preferred Futures Institute
Ron Walker Chairman Australian Grand Prix Corporation
Mary Crooks Executive Director Victorian Women’s Trust
Professor Rob Adams Director of Design and Culture City of Melbourne
Jan Trewhella Deputy CEO Sustainability Victoria
Dr. Edward J. Blakely Principal BlakelyGlobal
Dr. Annie Bolitho Executive Officer Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute,
Simon Molesworth QC Environmental lawyer and Chairman Greenearth Energy
University of Melbourne
Phillip Sutton Co-founder and Board Member Safe Climate Australia
Dr. Harry Blutstein Principal Integrating Sustainability
Tricia Caswell Founder and CEO Caswell & Associates
Dr. Tony Fry Director Team DES (Developing Ecological Sustainment)
Mike Hill Director Westwyck
Professor Geoffrey London Victorian Government Architect Amanda McCluskey Head of Sustainability and Responsible Investment Colonial First State
David Hodes Managing Director Ensemble Partners
Lyn Goldsworthy Director Campaign Essentials
Sam Graham Consultant Carbon Systems Australia
Gavin Riddell Director of Operations Earth Hour
Paul Gilding Independent writer and advisor
Sue Lennox Co-Founder / CEO OzGreen
Suzie Barnett Executive Director Green Building Council of Australia
Carolen Barripp Owner CL Creations
Stephen Shepherd Chairman, Shirlaws Global Business Coaching
Iain Macdonald Co-Founder / Co Managing Director Amnesia Razorfish
Gareth Johnston General Manager A&NZ Sustainability Circle
Sandy Blackburn-Wright Head of Organisational Mentoring, Sustainability and
Cheryl Batagol Chairperson EPA, Victoria
Larissa Brown Executive Director Centre for Sustainability Leadership
Uli Kruger Consultant Alternative Engine Technologies
Jenni Whitnall Associate Director, Sustainability, Climate Change & Water Advisory
Les Robinson Director Enabling Change
Jason De Santolo Research Fellow Jumbunna Research Unit University Technology
Trevor Thomas General Manager Ethinvest
Megan Seneque Leadership Team: Leading, Learning and Innovation Ensemble
Larissa Behrendt Professor of Law and Director of Research Jumbunna Indigenous
House of Learning,University Technology Sydney
Alan Tate Director Cambiar
Victor Steffensen Project Manager Traditional Knowledge Revival Pathways (TKRP)
James Whelan Director The Change Agency Jennifer Lauber Patterson Director Innovative Carbon Pty Ltd
Volunteers and supporters (Melbourne) Alexandra Chivers | Alexandra Haworth | Amanda Dâ€™Monte | Amy Wiech | Anastasia Lambadaridis | Andrew Ventre-Simmons | Angela Lecomber Anisha Yamsani | Anu Kasthuriarachchi | Azrina Iqbal | Biret Agirtan | Bojun Chiswell | Brett Kolodziej | Caroline Cotton | Caroline Velduis | Charbel Allam Cheryl Shea | Chloe Messner | Dana Hennessy | David Mann | Dean Oâ€™Callaghan | Denton He | Dianna Kha | Donna Lyon | Dora Peake | Elina Wilson Eling Clegg | Elizabeth Adamczyk | Elizabeth Winkelman | Emily Ballantyne-Brodie | Emma Bell | Erin Hewitson | Faye Tamani | Fiona Guo | Francis Meehan Gabriela Ramos | Gary Xue | Gemma Creegan | Hans-Karel Fros | Hsin-Yi Lo | Jacky Choi | Jacky Feng | Jamuna Rotstein | Janine Holgate | Jared Haube Jasmine Goh | Jason Chen | Jessica Lawson | Jessica Ly | Joanna Gu | Joanne Foster | John Louey | Joshua Chralowicz | Joshua Goh | Julia Cooke Julia Groves | Katharine Stanley | Kelly Ozuna | Ken Wright | Kristy Liu | Laura Gilmartin | Lexie Dealehr | Lumaine DeSouza | Madeline Courvisanos Marcia Kempe | Mary Lambrou | Matt Johnson | Max Bourke | Mike Flower | Morgan Langdon | Moyi Zheng | Nadia Folino | Natalie Johnston | Nenita Berdin Nicole Bradford | Nikki Gunawardana | Nisansala Kroon | Ntennis Davi | Ovilianty Hendrawan | Pallavi Murthy | Patricia Kellner | Patricia Williams Paul Campobasso | Penny Jones | Pernilla Hampus | Ramona Clark | Rhiannon Cook | Ric Falconer | Robbie McEwan | Robyn Chesney | Rosemary Ellis Roulla Pavlou | Sally White Samantha Sultana | Sandra Fregona | Sara Schwarz | Sarah Cameron | Sarah Coles | Scott Whiffin | Sean Breasley | Seema Shah Simon Duncan-Watt | Simone Shea Sonali Samarasekera | Suan Khai Chong | Susan Merrett | Tarone van Niekerk | Thomas Mak | Tom Ashburner | Tony Robertson Urna Tuladhar | Vesa Isthrehi | Vigna Rajagopal | Vivienne Bonnell | Ying Hu Yuta Noguchi
(Sydney) Agota Ozsvald | Amy Wiech | Cameron Grant | Natalie Johnston | Vina Von S
Guest speaker profile – Peter Cosier Building a bridge to the future Peter Cosier’s mission in life is to bridge the divide between science and public policy. Peter is director and founding member of the Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists, which was formed in 2002 to give science a more prominent role in finding long term solutions to the sustainable management of Australia’s water, land and biodiversity. The Wentworth Group achieves this by engaging with business, community and political leaders at local, State and Federal level. A guest speaker with the Sydney Fellowship Program, Peter is passionate about putting science at the heart of public decision-making.
“What I hope to bring to the Program is to share my professional experience in bridging the divide between science and public policy,” said Peter, a former Director General in the NSW Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Natural Resources and former policy advisor to then Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill. “If science can’t contribute to policy then it’s just knowledge for knowledge sake and will remain marginalised. “We need to do much more than just understand our natural world. We need to apply the laws of nature to managing our civilisation. That’s a policy question, not just a science question. “To put it another way, one can count all the feathers on every bird in the world and it would not make one jot of difference to environmental outcomes if that information is not assembled in a way that enables people to make better economic decisions.”
Peter said he agreed to become a guest speaker with the Fellowship Program because the leaders of tomorrow need to be far better equipped at managing nature than our current generation. “How we manage nature in the 21st century will define the future of human civilisation. Science is fundamental to that outcome,” he said. “Sustainability is a new concept to our western political institutions. Our Westminster system was built to manage the industrial revolution where the great contest of the age was between capital and labour. “We built our economic and political institutions at a time when the natural world seemed endless, where nature was there for the taking, where land clearing was part of a heroic vision to develop the nation, where fresh water flowing to the sea was thought to be wasted.
“The great challenge of our age is not wealth creation – certainly not in the western economies – the great challenge of our age is climate change, global food security, the growing scarcity of fresh water resources, and the catastrophic loss of the world’s biodiversity. “The Fellowship Program is important in bringing this new understanding to the world - helping us understand people’s place in nature. “The challenge of our generation is to build a new political system where managing nature becomes part of our everyday economic decisions. This is an issue that will penetrate every part of our civilisation for the next hundred years.”
If science canâ€™t contribute to policy then itâ€™s just knowledge for knowledge sake and will remain marginalised
Guest speaker profile – Greg Bourne
Lessons in leadership Greg Bourne’s advice to up and coming leaders is simple: don’t always expect to win friends. “If you are not pissing someone off you are probably not leading,“ says the straight-talking CEO of WWFAustralia, one of the nation’s leading conservation organisations with more than 80,000 supporters. “The aim is not to piss people off. Equally, if no-one is upset by what you are doing then you are probably not at the leading edge of thinking, you are probably not in the change process. If you want to be a leader you can’t be fearful of the reaction you get.”
It’s messages like this that Greg has been delivering to participants in the Fellowship Program, ever since he was “rugby tackled” at a function several years ago by Centre for Sustainability Leadership founder Larissa Brown. “Larissa rugby tackled me in that fantastically determined way she has and asked if I’d be prepared to talk to the group about leadership and particularly sustainability,” said Greg, who was appointed in 2004 after a long career with BP, including Regional President of BP Australasia. “The goals of the Centre were very much in line with my thinking so I readily agreed.
“Environmental and social movements tend to have activist elements which can be very confronting. This type of activism is great to raise awareness, but it doesn’t actually move things forward. “At the other end of the spectrum you’ve got to have people who are working with those in positions of influence, who are working with decision makers to find solutions. “That is the only way we are going to create real change and it is a philosophy that I saw strongly in Larissa’s work.”
Greg’s other key message to aspiring leaders is to learn how to bring people along for the ride. “There is a lot of fear around change. You need to encourage optimism and allay their fears. When you are trying to build a critical mass of support, you need to be very specific about what you want to achieve. “Then you set about finding out which people are going to be your assets – the ones who you can work with – and the ones you will bypass.” Greg makes no apologies for bringing a business-like approach to an NGO like WWF.
“I stress the need for everyone in this organisation to understand the business of doing the business of WWF,” he said. “We have to be able to raise the money so we can carry out the advocacy so we can create the outcomes we desire. There are senior people in this organisation who come from all sorts of different backgrounds, but we work hard to make sure they all have a strong understanding of all aspects of the business.”
Greg says he is more than happy to continue volunteering his time with the Fellowship Program. “These are all bright, talented young men and women who are no doubt going to be in leadership positions in the future,” he says.
If you want to be a leader you can’t be fearful of the reaction you get
Volunteer Profile – Tony Robertson, Communications Manager
Making a splash in the media pool After a working life at the busy intersection where business, politics and the media collide, Tony Robertson has found a new lease of life as communications manager for the Centre for Sustainability Leadership. Tony is just one example of the huge range of skills that the Centre can tap into through its wide network of volunteers. Having worked as a print journalist in Perth, Melbourne and London, Tony turned his sights to politics, working for both sides of the political fence as a media advisor. This included serving as senior media advisor to former WA Premier Richard Court. The next move was into corporate PR, with a particular emphasis on energy issues. That in turn led to his appointment as head of corporate affairs for national energy infrastructure giant Alinta.
After managing the media fallout from a controversial $13 billion takeover of Alinta by Babcock and Brown and Singapore Power (at the time Australia’s third largest corporate transaction), Tony began looking for new horizons. A week after leaving Alinta, he was at work in the Centre’s Melbourne head office, where he is responsible for communications, media and publications activities. Tony also provides in-house media training and coaching. “I was really attracted by the Centre’s vision of training the next generation of green leaders and how that could be translated to big business,” said Tony. “Lots of companies have sustainability managers or sustainability divisions, but that’s not enough. We need to ensure that the next generation of business leaders, such as CEOs and CFOs and CIOs, have specific training in and understanding of sustainability issues.
“Climate change, emissions trading, energy efficiency, community activism, employee engagement – these are not just “soft” sustainability issues. They go to the heart of business decision making and the bottom line.” Tony says the most rewarding part of his role is helping Fellowship Program participants understand the importance of the media and how to use it. “There are plenty of smart, passionate people out there, which is great. But the ones who know how to communicate, who know how to tell their story, who know how to inspire others to come along for the ride – they are the ones who are going to create real change. They’ll be the ones we remember in ten years time.
“And with the rise of social media and citizen journalism, it’s an exciting time for anyone who has got something interesting to say.” Outside of his volunteer work with the Centre, Tony is investigating opportunities to bring his skills and experience to the renewable energy sector.
Those who know how to inspire others to come along for the ride are the ones who are going to create real change
Volunteer Profiles – Ying Hu, Melbourne Fellowship Program Co-ordinator
Making the most of opportunities Ying Hu wasn’t about to be deterred after missing out on the highly competitive application process to take part in the 2009 Fellowship Program. Determined to learn the skills that would help her forge a career in sustainability, Ying decided to join the Centre anyway, but this time as a volunteer. She now finds herself sitting alongside the current crop of participants each week in her role as the co-ordinator of the Melbourne Fellowship Program. In this position, Ying collates participant feedback, handles logistics for the weekly workshops, liaises with mentors and organises the Melbourne graduation dinner. Ying also plays a big part in the retreats, booking accommodation and catering as well as sourcing speakers and volunteers.
“It’s ironic that I missed out on joining the Fellowship Program but I’m now sitting in there each week listening to this amazing array of speakers and getting to meet and network with all the other participants,” said Ying, a graduate in Environmental Science and Business Management at RMIT. “Sustainability has always been a passion of mine, so when I missed out on the Fellowship Program I thought I would look for volunteer opportunities with the Centre. “When they realised my interest in the Fellowship Program, I was appointed to this role. “It has opened up a huge range of networks for me. I’ve also been able to pick up an amazing array of skills, not just from the guest speakers but from learning how to manage and communicate with people as part of my day to day role.”
Ying believes her time with the Centre has prepared her well for her future career, pointing to the fact that she has just picked up a part-time role as manager of the Port Phillip EcoCentre.
“I realise I have to learn how to walk before I run, but the volunteer work with the Centre is helping me with my immediate, short-term skills, as well as allowing me to develop my broader vision. It’s really exciting.”
“I’ve learnt so much about workplaces, management and teamwork, but also a lot about myself. I am much better at learning how to deal with stress and when it’s OK to just relax and go with the flow.”
As for anyone considering volunteering with the Centre, Ying has no doubts.
Ying’s particular sustainability passion is recycling and waste management. Inspired by the participants and the program, Ying is currently working on a waste minimisation project aiming to change people’s behavior and perspective on waste. “My vision for a sustainable world involves changing people’s behaviors so we can reach a level of zero waste. My role will be working for a progressive local government authority or playing a leading part in a not-for-profit organisation.
“Do it. It’s a lot of hard work and a big time commitment, but you get back more than you give. Working with a group of passionate people has really inspired me to get out there and make a difference and I’m sure it will be the same with anyone else who volunteers.”
My vision for a sustainable world involves changing peopleâ€™s behaviors so we can reach a level of zero waste
Volunteer Profiles – Katharine Stanley, HR Co-ordinator
Inspired by giving back Having to reduce her annual leave balance turned out to be an inspiring turning point for Katharine Stanley. Rather than opting for days at the beach or long weekends away, the Human Resources Consultant at Mercedes-Benz decided to use her annual leave days to learn new skills while doing volunteer work for a worthy organisation. “I found an advertisement for the Centre for Sustainability Leadership on the Good Company website and after researching the values, strategic direction and great work of the organisation, the Centre was certainly something I wanted to be a part of,” said Katharine. “The way in which the Centre educates and supports passionate individuals to make a difference is inspirational.
“It is great to be part of an organisation which is truly contributing to the wellbeing of the world. The fact that the Centre recently won the Environmental Community Organisation of the Year at the Melbourne Awards is a prime example of this.” Katharine has been with MercedesBenz Australia/Pacific for four years and has compled a Bachelor of Business, majoring in Economics and Human Resources Management. Her role at the Centre for Sustainability Leadership is HR Coordinator, with a special focus on training and development. “To date I have been involved in establishing position descriptions, goal agreements and development plans for the leadership team. I am also administering a 360 degree feedback process for the Executive Director, Larissa Brown,” said Katharine.
“Whilst I do not have as much time as I would like to contribute to the Centre, I find the work very rewarding.
Katharine says the other great benefit of volunteering with the Centre has been an increase in her own personal awareness of sustainability issues.
“Given my professional history and wealth of knowledge and experience in the Human Resources field, I’ve been able to help in the implementation of processes which the Centre could continue to use for many years to come.
“Since beginning work with the Centre, I’ve found that I have changed my behaviour and the way I work to minimise wastage . I also encourage others in my workplace to do the same,” said Katharine.
“I’ve loved being able to create new processes and initiatives which I can help drive and implement with Larissa’s support. “My volunteering experience has allowed me to be more resourceful, more creative and upskill my human resources competencies – something which has been of value both to myself and the Centre.”
“Although there is an increasing focus on sustainability in the corporate world, there is still a long way to go which only education and influential individuals and organisations can change.”
The way in which the Centre educates and supports passionate individuals to make a difference is inspirational
2009 Melbourne Participants
Business executive Adam von Einem
Entrepreneur Monique Conheady
Mainstreaming green business Amy Kean
Background: “After being the CEO of Rip Curl Asia, I was involved in a boutique, environmentally considered, five unit property development in Brunswick, Melbourne. I am now working in my newly formed consulting business, The S Factor Group, helping companies deliver on sustainability initiatives which make commercial sense.”
Background: “I am CEO of car share business Flexicar. I grew up in a family of small business people and am interested in business ideas that have positive social and environmental outcomes.” * Monique is a finalist in the Telstra Business Women’s Awards of 2009.
Background: ” I work at Pinpoint Earth, helping businesses to implement products and services which save energy and water resources using incentives and rewards. I joined the Fellowship Program to learn from like-minded colleagues about overcoming the challenges to integrating sustainability into business.”
Why did you join the program? “My wife and I had recently moved back from living in Bali, so being part of the Fellowship Program would better connect us within sustainability circles in Melbourne. Through the course I’ve developed friendships with highly energetic, engaged people who are keen to help out on interesting projects and activities.” What change do you hope to create? “I want to help Australian companies and organisations transition to a more sustainable environment through reducing their reliance on nonrenewable energy sources, preventing over-consumption of water, and reducing waste sent to landfill.”
Best part of the Program? ”The program helped me think about intersectoral action that needs to happen. It lets you look at how all parts of society need to work together to achieve sustainability. The mentorship with Better Place CEO Evan Thornley has also been very useful.” What change do you hope to create? “I’ll expect that in five years I’ll have handed over Flexicar to someone up and coming within the company, or have sold or merged it with a bigger company. I’d like to have a higher profile in the business community and be able to bring sustainability to that sector in Australia.”
Best part of the program? ”The most useful aspect was learning the essential skills to create change that are not taught at university or work. These include communication and negotiation skills, political issues and leadership. I have learned to present sustainability in a way that reflects business drivers.” What change do you hope to create? “I would like to use my new skills to inspire businesses to integrate sustainability into their core products and services.”
First year student Linh Do
Greening telecommunications Nicky Scheltus
Supporting industry Matthew Gordon
Carbon neutral housing Alex Houlston
Background: “I was fresh out of high school when I joined the Fellowship Program. Though I was young, I had been involved in various environmental and youth leadership activities throughout high school and am still involved in those commitments.”
Background: “I work in Telstra’s Corporate Environment Group and focus mainly on staff engagement programs. This includes getting staff involved in internal and external events, the Eco Champion network and communications. I have more of a scientific background, but getting people involved in our campaigns and empowering them to change behaviour is what I find really exciting!”
Background: I work in the Sustainable Solutions Unit at the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) Victoria and decided to join the Fellowship Program to enhance my leadership skills and personal development.”
Background: “I had just recently emigrated from the UK, where I was working on urban renewal projects, before joining the Fellowship Program and getting a job in sustainable design with the housing division of the Department of Human Services.”
Best part of the program? “One of the most useful things for me has been getting to know everyone else in the program; it really is amazing to look around the room and marvel at some of the accomplishments that have been achieved by these people. The ability to learn so much through the weekly sessions and the retreats is also fantastic.” What change do you hope to create? “I am part of a project which is developing a website which aims to foster better relationships between the public and politicians. We hope to change the culture of how these relationships work as well as how the internet is used for public debate.”
Best part of the program? “Definitely the networking through the speakers, mentors and other participants was a huge benefit of the program. Jason Clarke’s sessions were also a highlight.” What change do you hope to create? “I want to work somewhere where I can empower people to make the small (or big) changes they need to make a difference and make them feel good about it. I’m particularly keen on waste issues around food – and how we can start using our waste as an energy source.”
Best part of the program? “The networking opportunities have been amazing - with other participants, mentors and speakers. I simply wouldn’t have had access to these otherwise.” What change have you created or do you hope to create? “I have gone on to start a web business that connects the community with political decision makers and leaders.”
Why did you join the Fellowship Program? “I had been looking for a course in sustainability which was not run by a university to give me new professional skills in a context outside of academia. This course seemed to have the right mix of practical application, professional education and strategic theory.” What change do you hope to create? “I had always been interested in urban design and the built environment but now feel that I have a much clearer idea of my future aims and objectives because of how the course has challenged me to think. I hope to be able to create the inclusion of self-reliant and resilient city principals in a number of high profile urban regeneration projects’ masterplanning, including urban food production and waste to energy proposals.”
Banking and wellbeing Gina Prendergast
Public Space Art Jen Rae
Green school buildings Pippa Howard
Sustainable pet ownership Tamsin Olejnik
Background: “I am a team leader at NAB and am also head co-ordinator of the S.A.V.E (Staff Assisting our Valuable Environment) crew which is a grassroots green team at work. I had kept an eye on the course for two years and this year felt right. Some organisations and universities teach environmental and sustainable management, but I hadn’t come across any teaching leadership in this area.”
Background: “I recently completed my Masters degree in Public Art and have been practising as a visual artist. Over the past five years, I expanded my research and projects to focus on issues of sustainability, seeking knowledge on key concerns pertaining to water, waste, climate change and alternative energy options.
Background: “After working as a graduate architect for a private practice, I have moved to a research position for the Smart Green Schools Research Team at the University of Melbourne. I also lecture part-time in environmental design.”
Background: “I joined the Fellowship six months after beginning work with EPA Victoria as a Client Relationship Manager. I’ve always been careerorientated and had been looking for ways to focus a little more on leadership skills and developing a stronger presence for some time.”
Best part of the program? “Developing a mentor/mentee relationship accelerated the rate of change in which I could achieve outcomes, and having the support of such a skilled person was amazing. The networking - with other participants, alumni, guest speakers and others has opened doors and increased the ‘skill base’ I can call upon if and when needed. “ What change do you hope to create? “I hope to establish a clearer career direction, develop more skills and have a greater influence on behaviour in the work place. I would like to be a CEO or senior leader and lead an award winning innovative company/ community with an embedded sustainable culture which is world renowned as the best.”
Best part of the program? “Connecting with others in the field of sustainability leadership has been a worthwhile and rewarding aspect of the fellowship. It has allowed me to see the potential for artistic processes in communicating sustainability solutions and to understand the points of intersection where artists may collaborate and intervene. I now have a considerable range of resources and networks to draw from for future projects and discourse.” What change do you hope to create? “My art practice goal is to establish that public art is a powerful and effective tool to engender behavioural change towards environmental sustainability. The skills and insights I’ve learnt in the Program have the potential to create new entrepreneurial opportunities, practical tools and approaches toward social change for sustainability, for artists and others.”
Why did you apply for the Program? “It was a goal of mine after learning of it through alumni the year before. I saw it as a great opportunity to build confidence and greater awareness of the issues and be inspired about how to work towards finding a solution. It has forced me to think about things differently than I would in my 9 to 5 job.” What change do you hope to create? “I feel quite strongly that we need to integrate environmental design into school curriculum as a way of educating our children about the importance of the environment and their individual impact. Part of this is ensuring that the learning spaces alone promote these principles so students can see it, live it, and breathe it as part of their education.”
Best part of the program? “For me it was the network of people that it gave me access to - this was perfect for me as I had only arrived in Australia in 2008 and was just finding my feet in the local sustainability arena.” What change do you hope to create? “The course has helped me develop some great skills which I hope to use more effectively to influence others in the future.”
Responsible media Megan Argyrio
Leading the legal sector Melanie Szydzik
Publishing Jane Farago
Positive architecture Russell Hughes
Background: “I was previously working for Film Victoria where I developed an industry strategy to ‘green’ the Victorian screen production sector. I am passionate about sustainability but wanted additional skills to bring about widespread change.”
Background: “I am Senior Associate to a Judge at the Supreme Court of Victoria and was keen to add to and build upon my skills and experiences in the sustainability space.”
Background: “I have enjoyed a career in book publishing and community information and for the last couple of years I have been looking after my small children. I am also halfway through an MBA with the Australian Graduate School of Management.”
Background: “ I am a sessional lecturer and PhD candidate in the school of Architecture and Design at RMIT University. I have been involved in various sustainablity related projects, in particular working with visionary US architects Arakawa and Gins.’
Best part of the program? “The sessions with “Uncle Jase” have been awesome.” (Jason Clarke, of Minds At Work, is one of the most sought after creative minds in the country and is a regular guest speaker.) What change do you hope to create? “Given the media’s widespread influence in shaping public opinion and behaviours, I am targeting the media industry as it is critical to engage the media in addressing the environmental and social challenges we’re facing.”
Best part of the program? “The connections formed with other Fellows, previous participants, trainers, presenters and my mentor have been invaluable to me both in a professional and personal capacity. Through these connections – and the opportunity for collaboration and consultation – I have been able to be more ambitious with the projects I am working on and to progress them more rapidly.” What change do you hope to create? “I would like to enhance the sustainability of the legal sector in Victoria through the establishment of a voluntary and principles-based sustainability initiative to which legal firms can subscribe.”
Best part of the program? “The luxury of hours of exposure to the brilliant teaching of Jason Clarke from Minds at Work, together with a host of other committed, diverse and inspiring leaders from the field of sustainability and beyond. The stimulation, enthusiasm and energy of my fellow students. The extremely practical – and challenging – media training. The opportunity to really get your teeth stuck into the complex and challenging issues of sustainability.” What change do you hope to create? “The course has created a profound change in my understanding of the world we live in and the way we live. I hope that I can help Australia to play its role in mitigating climate change. Above all, I would like to open other people’s eyes to sustainability the way my eyes have been opened this year.”
Best part of the program? “ I found the high calibre of the guest speakers on the course both enrichening, encouraging and inspiring. Also the mentorship program has been invaluable, opening doors that otherwise would have remained closed. The opportunity to network with likeminded sustainability leaders was also of great benefit to my endeavors.” What change do you hope to create? “ As a result of the program I have been involved in projects that have broadened my professional horizons, and opened my eyes to the opportunities, challenges (and pitfalls) of being a sustainability leader.”
Big 4 consultant Ronnie Lake
Filmmaker Robbie McEwan
Environmental lawyer Nicola Rivers
Local council Emily Boucher
Background: “I was working for a professional services firm in their sustainability practice and wanted to learn the leadership skills to help bring about systemic change.”
Background: “I am completing a degree in Film and Television at the Victorian College of the Arts. I wanted to acquire the practical skills required to drive large scale communication projects and felt the Program would be helpful.”
Background: “I am an environmental lawyer and I have been Law Reform and Policy Director with the Environment Defenders Office, a community legal centre specialising in environmental law, since December 2008, focusing on encouraging State and Federal government to improve their environmental laws.”
Background: “I am the environment officer at the City of Kingston. I have two major roles, one is to reduce the emissions from council, and the other is to co-ordinate the environmental behaviour change program for council staff.”
Best part of the Program? “The media training was really useful; however, having the chance to meet and discuss issues with other passionate people was also really great.” What change do you hope to create? “In the short term, the Program made me take stock of my own personal sustainability. In particular I am successfully maintaining a healthy work life balance and spending as much time a possible with my family. In the long term, I want to work with corporates to embed sustainable practices in their businesses.”
Best part of the Program? “I felt that the exchange of ideas between participants was extremely useful.” What change do you hope to create? “British economist Nicholas Stern recently wrote: “When cuts become deeper, and as costs are incurred, country-by-country political support will be necessary in order to sustain climate-mitigation policies over time. This will require a robust and shared public understanding of the science, and agreement that action is warranted, irrespective of short-term economic costs.I hope to help build that understanding.”
Why did you join? “I wanted to get practical training in different leadership skills such as problem solving and project management, and discover more about sustainability leadership. I was also keen to meet and collaborate with other people who were committed to the environment and sustainability and find out more about the many sustainability initiatives going on in Australia at the moment.” What change do you hope to create? “I have started to use the skills learnt in the program in my work to get better environmental outcomes through improving environmental laws. Through my Fellowship Program project on river protection I hope to be able to add to work being done by many sectors of the community to demand that the Victorian Government better manage and protect rivers. In the longer term I hope to use the skills, knowledge and contacts to achieve real, practical environmental benefits.”
Best part of the program? “I’ve found the networking to be one of the most powerful aspects, to spend time with so many other amazing individuals and learn from them has been great. The course has opened my eyes to the various ways we can lead and some of the great leaders which have come before us.” What change do you hope to create? “I hope to progress my career in Local Government and be able to inspire all staff to care and take action on the environment.”
Youth Leadership Ellen Sandell
International development Ciaran MacCormaic
Chemical engineer Chloe Hanson-Boyd
Water sector leader Amanda Wealands
Background: “I am Victorian Director of the Australian Youth Climate Coalition and was their ambassador at the UN climate change negotiations in Bali and in Poland. I am responsible for the Leadership in Environmental Action Program (LEAP) which is held for high school students each September.” * Ellen was named Young Environmentalist of the Year at the 2009 Banksia Awards.
Background: “My current job is teacher and curriculum developer at Swinburne University. Prior to that I had been working in Kenya where I helped set up a business plan competition to channel investment into environmental businesses in Kenya, Mozambique and Cameroon.”
Background: “I am finishing my chemical engineering/climatology degree at the University of Melbourne. At the same time I am involved in an Engineers Without Borders project called the Cambodia Development Education Experience, which inspires students to look at the role of appropriate technology and sustainable development in an incountry setting.”
Background: “I work in a specialist consulting firm focused on improving the health of our rivers. My expertise lies in environmental flows and water management, strategy development and waterway rehabilitation design. I am also president of the River Basin Management Society.”
Best part of the Program? “Meeting people who are passionate about sustainability but who come from different backgrounds, such as business. I’ve also really benefitted from the mentoring program, which has provided me with a great sounding board.” What change do you hope to create? “I am passionate about encouraging young people to contribute to solutions about climate change. Through this I hope we can create systemic change across all sectors of society.”
Why did you join the Program? “I wanted to gain access to a very helpful mentor and an inspiring collective of participants and speakers who all have a vision for a sustainable world. Learning from the successes and failures of other participants and speakers has been invaluable.” What change do you hope to create? “I am developing a plan to set up a ‘trade not aid’ model of international development to be run from Australia. The plan will direct investment into emerging markets for environmental products and services in Asia-Pacific.”
Best part of the program? “I have found the guest speakers to be particularly interesting and very approachable. I have gained many new insights, contacts and ideas from those involved in the Program and this has fuelled my interest and intentions to move onto bigger things.” What change do you hope to create? “I am working on a climate animation project with a fellow participant and I hope the educational learnings can be transferred to the broader population. In a professional sense, I hope to be able to challenge the practices of the chemical processing industry through engineering based solutions and consultation.”
Why did you join the Program: “I wanted to do something that scared me, that would allow me to meet lots of amazing people, that would deliver me really strong leadership skills and that would help me work out what I am really passionate about. The course has definitely challenged me to think about things differently and to have the confidence to tackle scary things.” What change do you hope to create? “The project I’m involved in is looking at creative ways to solve old, cantankerous policy problems. We have a lawyer, an artist and an engineer looking at the issue of government licensing for grazing on public river frontages. Longer term, I want the catchment management and water management industries to have a strong voice, to be able to advocate for what they know needs to happen.” 57
Aquatic scientist and communicator Sheree Marris
Background: “When I applied for the program I had just arrived back in Australia after living in London for five years where I had worked in branding, put together a guide about sustainable living and ran an ecoaware health centre. I’m passionate about developing ethical creative businesses where people want to work.”
Background: I was working with consulting firm Futureye mainly on mining and manufacturing projects. I joined the Fellowship Program to network with people in Australia who were in the sustainability sphere, to gain a greater understanding of sustainability issues and to enable me to shift my work focus onto areas such as renewable energy.
Best part of the Program? “The whole program has been indispensible as there is a large crossover between it and the training program I’m now working on. But most of all I’m delighted to have met many courageous, inspirational and brilliant people who are committed to change.“
Best part of the Program? “The mentorship coaching from ‘green collar’ career coach Dean SteeleBennett really made me question myself and get serious about acting on what I was saying.”
Background: “I am trained as aquatic scientist and run my own environmental communications consulting business, Sheree Marris, where I work with the government and corporate sector to develop innovative environmental projects. For me it is about trying to develop ways to engage people with the environment and that value that lies within this. My communications also extends into co-hosting a radio show, writing books and producing environmental documentaries.”
What change do you hope to create? “After being accepted on the Fellowship Program I was offered a role at the Centre creating a multimedia online sustainability leadership program. I now have a team of people and supporters, from filmmakers to e-learning experts, who I’m working with to make the vision a reality. The online program will empower thousands of future leaders to independently alter their own future and the future of the planet.” 58
What change do you hope to create? “I’m working on a Web 2.0 project in which we hope to create a new, more immediate channel for impacting decision-making. We’re starting in Melbourne but will be rolling it out in major cities globally. At work, I’ve also been able to shift the scope of projects that I work on from mining and manufacturing to renewable and online engagement.”
Why did you join the Program? “I had previous involvement with the Fellowship Program and had witnessed first hand how amazing it was. But the main reason was to become more effective and focused and to meet and work with likeminded people.” What change do you hope to create? “I’m working on a project that has the potential to work across several media channels to make the environment/sustainability fun, sexy and entertaining. We need to change the current scenario from doom and gloom, to make the environment fun and engaging, but more importantly to empower people that they can make a difference.”
2009 Sydney Participants
Social change activist Eyal Halamish
Communications Ariana Bourke
Investment banker Daniel Sturrock
Superannuation leader Justin Medcalf
Green building and construction Alicia Jones
Advertising Angela Mayer
Background: “I’m an investment banker and worked for 10 years at Macquarie Bank. When I lost my New York job at the end of 2008, I moved back to Australia and became an independent consultant working mostly in the renewable energy sector. The Fellowship Program looked like the perfect, short study program that would complement my professional experience.”
Background: “Before the Fellowship, I was developing my own business, helping people invest their money in a greener way. I was still at a very early stage and in many ways I think I lacked the integral skills to be able to create the type of business and type of change that I wanted.”
Background: “I’m a sustainability consultant for an engineering firm that provides advice for high-rise building projects on how they can be more energy and water efficient and how they can use more sustainable building materials.”
Background: “My background is in advertising and I worked in a digital advertising agency until 2008, when I finally had the courage to make a career change. I really wanted to use my passion and my knowledge to create positive change in the environmental area. The course gave me the relevant skills to be successful.”
Best part of the Program? “Being exposed to a lot of interesting people and ideas, both within the course, collaborating with the other students, and the range of speakers – listening to what they have to say, and having them as contacts. I also really enjoyed the work we have done on public speaking and media training.” What change do you hope to create? “As an independent entrepreneur in the sector, I hope to help my clients do some exciting things in renewable energy. I also want to continue working to make clean energy available in developing countries.”
Why did you join the Program? “I knew one of the alumni who highly recommended the course. I’d also heard about the course via the environmental NGO circles, and it already seemed to have a high reputation for shaping sustainability leaders. Networking and learning project management skills have been the main benefits.” What change do you hope to create? “I’m currently trying to develop an online portal to help people determine how green their superannuation is. The change I hope to create is one where people understand the real value of money and how their investments can make a big difference in creating our sustainable future, as we all own a part of corporate Australia.”
Why did you join the Program? “It was the first time it had been run in Sydney. The skill set it teaches you isn’t really something you can learn on the job. And I found it appealing to be working with 25 other sustainable leaders in different areas, toward the same goal. Everything about the Program has been fantastic – my peers have been great in helping me comprehend issues and the whole thing has been a really inspiring experience.” What change do you hope to create? “My current project is about ecoeducation. I’m writing a feasibility report to expand on the curriculum currently being taught to primary and secondary schools. It would be fantastic if that was implemented. Longer term I’d like to be still working with sustainable development and inspiring huge change in my industry.”
What is the best thing about the Program? “The people I met. My fellow participants were amazing and I hope I keep in touch with them. The mentoring relationships I developed were also really valuable and in particular helped me with my project, which is to change people’s behaviour in regards to using reuseable coffee cups.” What change do you hope to create? “I want to become a role model for a sustainable lifestyle. I want to show ordinary people that a sustainable lifestyle doesn’t mean too many sacrifices and it can actually be fun. I know many people who think that being more sustainable is too much effort and I want to show them that it’s easy, that it’s just a different way of doing things.” 59
Indigenous issues Oliver Costello
Big 4 consultant Lauren Rogge
Community activist Lindsay Soutar
Climate change campaigner Megan Ivory
Background: “I’m studying a BA in Adult Education and Community Management. I assist at Get Up, which is a community advocacy organisation, mainly on Indigenous campaigns. I also work at The Jumbunna Indigenous House of Learning at UTS. At the moment I am working on a media project that looks at biodiversity strategies on Aboriginal land and strengthening Aboriginal culture.”
Background: “I studied Commerce and Law at university and I currently work for Ernst and Young as a consultant in their Climate Change and Sustainability Services team. I work with corporations to assist them in understanding their impacts on society and the environment, and help them to best communicate their sustainability performance to their stakeholders.”
Background: “About three years ago myself and some friends formed a climate action group in Newtown that met in the local pub. It started off with just a group of concerned friends but now we’ve grown in profile and numbers and can no longer meet at the pub! We are working in our local community and with other climate actions groups around Australia to advocate for real action on climate change. My professional background is in academic research.”
Background: “I’ve been working in the environmental movement for around 10 years, currently with Greenpeace. I’ve also started my own charity, the Gareth Ivory Foundation, which focuses on providing health and education to disadvantaged communities in the Asia-Pacific area. We’re currently raising money to assist schools in East Timor.”
Why did you join the Program? “I was interested in focusing more of my energy on environmental sustainability and on how I could combine my passion for environmental sustainability and Indigenous issues. The Fellowship appeared to be a great opportunity to highlight the role of Indigenous knowledge and practice in tackling sustainability challenges.” What change do you hope to create? “My current project is titled ‘Fire Sticks’, which looks at the fire management practices of northern Australian Indigenous communities and how these principles can be appropriated into the fire management practices in NSW. Longer term, I hope to create change through the development of socially inclusive sustainable communities and organisations.”
Why did you join the Program? “I saw an article in which Larissa Brown spoke about how environmentalists are often faced with the choice to either campaign and lobby against the system, or to work within organisations to create change. This resounded with my thoughts on how to embed sustainability into business – to put sustainability minded people in positions of leadership. I decided the program was just what I needed in terms of equipping me with the skills and knowledge I wanted.” What change do you hope to create? “I hope that in the near future we will be seeing a bit of a revolution, where business organisations are playing a pivotal role in leading the way on issues such as climate change, resource depletion, consumption, sustainable development in developing countries, and generally having a positive impact on our environment. I hope to be a part of that process.”
What is the best thing about the Program? “The opportunity to be involved with a group of people working towards similar goals who are passionate about what they do. The program encourages us to set goals and supports us in achieving them. It also gives us exposure to people - guest speakers and mentors – many of whom are very experienced, very inspiring, and whom I’ve been able to learn from.” What change do you hope to create? “I hope to be involved in the community-based movement around climate change, to shift the terms of the debate and help create a positive, zero carbon, 100% renewable energy future. I believe that change must come from the grassroots.”
What is the best thing about the Program? “Definitely the people we’ve had access to. Not just participants but mentors and guest speakers. The networking has been great, I’ve had the opportunity to speak to so many inspiring people. I can never thank the Centre enough for how good that’s been.” What change do you hope to create? “The project I am working on, Wipe It Out, aims to get rid of nonrecycled toilet paper. I really hope it is successful! And I want to take the skills I’ve learned and put them to use in the field I’m working in, because that’s my passion. I also want to expand the work that my charity does.”
Green building and construction Alicia Maynard
Sustainable infrastructure Erin Cini
NGO communications Aaron Fuller
Community democracy Marnie Kikken
Background: “My background is in engineering and in the last five years I’ve focused on sustainable building design. Two years ago I became Sustainability Manager with a construction company and I started focusing on corporate sustainability and triple bottom line accounting. I’m also managing more of the design process, to ensure that sustainable design objectives get incorporated into the project.”
Background: “I’m an engineer, with a background in the water industry and delivering big infrastructure projects. Recently I have taken on the role of National Sustainability Coordinator with an engineering consultancy where I am developing processes and tools to incorporate sustainability, carbon assessment and climate change adaptation into our projects”
Background: “I’m currently working at the Australian Red Cross as Marketing Manager, whilst also in the process of launching my own business, Shiftlock.com.au. It’s a consulting agency focusing on environmental projects, organisational behaviour and recruitment.”
Background: “My background is in tourism and hospitality and after completing my Masters in Environmental Science, I’ve been working for the last four years in community engagement programs for the Nature Conservation Council of New South Wales. I wanted to broaden the impact of the work I was doing and meet likeminded people from various industries and backgrounds.”
What is the best thing about the Program? “The journey is the best thing about it. We were told at the start to trust in the process. I didn’t understand what that meant, now I really do see that this course is a journey that will last long after the course has finished. It really is a life-changing experience, it’s changed the way I think about myself. It gives us the tools to be a courageous leader.” What change do you hope to create? “I would like to raise awareness amongst built environment professionals about our influence on people’s health, happiness and productivity through building design. When an engineer designs a building, we’re only encouraged to think about whether it’ll stand up and if it will withstand strong winds and earthquakes. I want to create a shift in the design process to sustainable design principles focused on low energy, long life and loose fit.”
What is the best thing about the Program? “The confidence to develop my ideas and the tools to make them a reality. My confidence developed through the skills I’ve learned from the course, expanding my networks, listening to the successes of the inspirational people who take the time to present to us, and through the encouragement of my mentor.” What change do you hope to create? “At the moment the Australian Government is spending a lot of money on infrastructure with the important objective to stimulate the economy and create jobs by “building Australia’s future”. I’d like to see us building Australia’s sustainable future. My project infra:LINK brings together emerging professionals within the infrastructure industry to drive change and action on planning, decision making and constructing sustainable infrastructure.”
What is the best thing about the Program? “The networking, meeting the 25 participants in Sydney as well as those in Melbourne. These are likeminded people who are passionate about what they want to do. I’ve also learned diplomacy, pragmatism, lateral thinking and the ability to understand complex issues from a leadership perspective.” What change do you hope to create? “Massive social change, one cause at a time. My project is a campaign aimed at targeting the consumption of non-recycled toilet paper. You only have to walk down an aisle of the supermarket to see how much you can change in regard to what Australians do. To me, it’s about big change through little things - changing the way we consume and communicate.”
What is the best thing about the Program? All the retreats were very timely for the stage we were at in the course. I also really enjoyed the coaching sessions with Kate Harris. I definitely improved my communication skills and gained the confidence to network. But I think the program is a case of the sum being greater than the parts. What change do you hope to create? “My particular passion is community engagement. I want to create a model in Australia that involves genuine partnership between communities and the Government around environmental decision making. I think that if the community is involved in decision making, the outcomes will be much stronger.” 61
Church engagement Kate Parsons
Coalition building Alexia Wellbelove
Renewable energy Ross Harding
NGO and film Alexandra Graham
Background: “I studied marine ecology and I’ve been working mostly for local government in sustainable education roles. In the last couple of years I’ve been working for the State Government as a sustainability specialist, providing information and support for government agencies.
Background: “I recently moved back to Australia after living in the UK for 21 years, where I worked for environmental NGOs. I was the director of an organisation that organised groups together to lobby UK governments. I’m currently working for the Humane Society International.”
Background: “I studied mechanical engineering and finance then went to Sweden and studied renewable energy. I’m currently working as a building services consultant, teaming up with architects to design buildings to minimise their impact on the environment.”
Background: “I’m an environmental educator, currently working for the Australian Conservation Foundation. I am interested in using media to deliver sustainablility messages so I’ve started up my own small business, EcoReel, which makes films for schools and communities.”
What is the best thing about the Program? “It is a combination of the network of people, the coaching from Kate Harris and the mentoring. My mentor helped develop Catholic Earthcare Australia. She’s very positive and supportive. She inspires me to think very broadly about what churches might be able to do about sustainability.”
What is the best thing about the Program? “The elements I’ve enjoyed were the mentoring and the coaching sessions with Kate Harris. The work I’ve done with my mentor and with Kate has helped me bring everything else together, and I’m learning how to develop myself further in the way that I want to. I’ve learned a lot more about myself in that process.
Why did you join the Program? “I was looking for a way of furthering my professional development. I manage a small team at ACF and I felt that improving my leadership qualities would be very important to my role. In addition to that, I really enjoy networking, I love stepping up and seeing what else I could do and expanding my capabilities.”
What change do you hope to create? “My project is working with the Uniting Church on ways to support congregations to undertake sustainability projects and how to lead a discussion about the environment and make it relevant for people in churches. I want to create change so that it becomes easy for many faith communities, starting with the Uniting Church, to take up sustainability and to consider it as part of their life.”
What change do you hope to create? “My current project is about getting a regional biodiversity treaty for Oceania. I want more people to recognise the need to conserve biodiversity. I want to be making people understand that biodiversity is a central part of climate change, and that if we don’t look after it, it’ll make the effects of climate change worse.”
What is the best thing about the Program? “Definitely the people. I thought it was pretty amazing just to be surrounded by 24 people who were as passionate as I was, with a similar goal and vision, but were from a completely different area and knowledge base. Whenever I have an idea, there’s someone I can call and have a chat about it. It opened my eyes to how narrow my area in sustainability is.”
What change do you hope to create? “To help fuel a revolution to push the limits on a 100% renewable energy future. On a personal level, I’d like to be working with large-scale renewable power plants and trying to get more of them integrated into cities and generally happening around the world.”
What change do you hope to create? “I suppose it’s to keep doing what I’m doing, but to do it better. I want to create a bigger impact through inspiring people to lead more sustainable lifestyles and be advocates for sustainability. I know one person can’t achieve a mainstream effect on their own, but I can certainly contribute towards that goal.”
Natural resource management Lucian McElwain
Youth activism Sara Haghdoosti
Corporate social responsibility Melissa Macpherson
Furniture and design Michael Alvisse
Background: I studied botany and spent five years working for Greening Australia. For the past six years I’ve worked in country NSW for the public service on native vegetation legislation. I’ve only recently moved back to Sydney and wanted to reconnect with some of my environmental networks.
Background: “I was studying Economics and Social Sciences at Sydney University while working with the Youth Climate Coalition as the National Recruitment Director for the Power Shift project. Before that, I was involved with organising National Women’s Day and Reclaim the Night.”
Background: “ Having always yearned to do something more meaningful and people-orientated (and leave those excel spreadsheets behind me), in 2008 I finally left the world of investment banking to take a role with a not for profit aimed at making firms and their employees feel more connected to their community and socially responsible.
Background: “I practiced architecture for 13 years before setting up Schamburg and Alvisse, a sustainable furniture company. We won the Australian Design Award in 2007 and have exhibited in Milan, San Francisco and in Australian museums. I also do community work with the Tamarama Surf Lifesaving Club.”
What is the best thing about the Program? “The chance to share some positive stories about environmental campaigning. To share successes and not just doom and gloom. To hear from an amazing range of experts and speakers on environmental issues week in and week out. The structure of the course was great, the visioning, media skills, project management skills. And meeting such an amazing, interesting group of people with great ideas and viewpoints.” What change do you hope to create? “I hope to apply the skills I learned in the course to the areas of sustainable biodiversity and native vegetation management. I’ve already got my dream job, so I’d like to do this job well and use my influence for the public good.”
What is the best thing about the Program? “Getting to meet everyone, going on the retreats and creating a space for reflection. I think I’ve really benefited from the planning and visioning skills and the goal-setting exercises.” What change do you hope to create? “I hope to keep creating change, to keep working with NGOs and to continue being an activist. The program taught me how to create change better and not burn out. I have to treat my time sustainably as well.”
What is the best thing about the Program? “ People are the best thing about the program. The wide variety of speakers who came to present their opinions, the mentors who shared their knowledge and experiences provided me with so much inspiration. Also, the networks of people the course has given me access to is far beyond what I had expected. My fellow participants were great too - often surprising me with their insights and opinions.” What change do you hope to create? “ I would like to play my part in helping people reconnect with themselves, their Environment and each other, to try and focus on what really matters. I see myself using my skills to bring the corporate and community sectors together to drive sustainable, transformational social change..”
What is the best thing about the Program? “The mentorships. The contents of the course were powerful and relevant to the work that we do. Guest speakers were fascinating, inspiring and practical at the same time. And the other participants. I loved doing projects and working closely with the other students.”
What change do you hope to create? “The greatest change is to focus on social resilience, looking at building stronger sustainable communities. Specifically for me that would be the design and building environment. Also, with my work at Tamarama, I want to encourage greater community engagement, building social resilience, sharing of sustainability knowledge, and co-ordinating action within those communities.” 63
Environmental legislator Kate Robinson
Business advocate Jacqueline Taylor
Alternative transport Rachel Mimmo
Law student and campaigner Paul Ferris
Background: “I am a Senior Legal Officer in the NSW Department of Environment, Climate Change and Water. I have spent a fair amount of my working life helping to make and enforce environment laws, which has been extremely rewarding.”
Background: “A few years ago I was an environmental lawyer at a top commercial law firm. Standing at the photocopier, I was disgusted at the reams of virgin paper that was being churned through, so I set about implementing the firm’s sustainability policy. Since then, I have launched into climate change management consultancy at Energetics where I consult companies in moving to a low carbon economy.”
Background: “I was a corporate lawyer for five years in the UK, moved to Australia in April 2008 and travelled around the country for 8 months in a car that used waste cooking oil instead of petrol or diesel. I set up a blog to record my travels: www.ozonabatteredfish.blogspot. com. Once I finished, I decided to give up law and joined the Nature Conservation Council of New South Wales.”
Background: “I am finishing my law degree at the University of Sydney, while working as a researcher for an ex-CEO of Greenpeace International. For the last five years, I have been involved in community and student campaigning on sustainability issues, including with such groups as the Australian Youth Climate Coalition and the Australian Student Environment Network.”
Why did you join the Program? “I was new to Australia and the Australian environmental movement, and I wanted to meet likeminded people and learn more about sustainability and climate change. I’d just finished the big trip around Australia, and it’d had a lot of media publicity, so I wanted to figure out the next step from there.”
Why did you join the Program? “I joined the Fellowship hoping it would be the ideal environment to explore differences, challenge my own ideas, but also discover strong commonalities with a cross section of young leaders. It has really given me the chance to explore ideas with a group of intelligent, questioning and diverse leaders.”
What change do you hope to create? “We’re organising a sustainable rally, with vehicles running on alternative fuels. It’s a race from Mildura to the Great Barrier Reef. I definitely want this project to be a success and I’d like to make it an annual event. I want Australians to be more aware of alternative fuels. I want to wean people off fossil fuels, really.”
What change do you hope to create? “There are many challenges in the decades ahead, whatever actions we take for sustainability at this juncture. I want to be a part of ensuring that these challenges make communities stronger and increase resilience, while also empowering everyday people to take action and build their communities for strong sustainability outcomes.”
Why did you join the Program? “In January this year I visited Antarctica - an incredibly enriching experience. I believe I saw clear impacts of climate change first hand on a pristine environment. This inspired me to think about how to have a greater impact on making the world more sustainable.” What change do you hope to create? “I hope to lead by example and bring others along with me to achieve lasting change using a positive and constructive message. Every little bit counts and I want people to be excited and encouraged about any steps they take rather feeling guilty about what they don’t do. Communication and accessibility are the key.”
Best part of the Program? “It has given me the skills and imperative needed to challenge myself and take on greater challenges to create change towards sustainability. In terms of course structure, one of the outstanding features of the Program was the amazing speakers - being taught through the experience of others is far more effective and inspiring. The variety of speakers from different disciplines and backgrounds provides such a rich body of information and range of perspectives. Media training was also invaluable.” What change do you hope to create? “The big picture is changing community perceptions through advertising. Through my work as a consultant I hope to influence companies to go beyond compliance and take the necessary action to shift to a low carbon economy - and influence their customers, employees and suppliers to do the same. Closer to home, I hope to inspire mainstream sustainability in my ‘affluenza’ affected social group.”
Board Profiles Cameron Brown – Chair Cameron has been working to develop the Centre for Sustainability Leadership since 2006. As Chair, he has focused on developing the board, creating sustainable funding models and setting the strategic direction for the organisation. Cameron manages the Sustainable Solutions Unit at EPA Victoria. He participated in the Federal Government’s Australia–Korea Young Leaders Exchange Program in 2007 and was a recipient of a 2008 Future Summit Leadership Award. Phillip Kingston – Vice Chair Phillip Kingston is the Managing Director of Kingston Development, an emerging software and consulting company. He is interested in the marketability and business case of sustainability, and in new-world governance. He is member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and serves on a number of private company boards.
Alison Dodd – Secretary Alison Dodd is a legal policy officer with the Victorian Department of Sustainability and Environment, working in the area of climate change policy and legislation. She is also commercial lawyer, practising most recently at DLA Phillips Fox in the areas of climate change, environmental and infrastructure law. Alison is also involved in a number of other not-for-profit associations, including as Victorian Vice President of the Environment Institute of Australia and New Zealand (EIANZ) and as a Policy Officer in the area of climate change policy with the International National Trusts Organisation (INTO).
Megan Gourlay – Treasurer Megan Gourlay is Group Finance Manager of an ASX listed Australian manufacturing company. She is a Chartered Accountant, is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia and holds a Bachelor of Business (Accountancy) from RMIT University. Megan has a background in external audit having worked for Ernst & Young and Arthur Andersen. At the Centre for Sustainability Leadership, Megan’s role is to make sure that from a financial stand point, the Centre is beyond reproach. James Gifford – Board Member James Gifford is the Executive Director for Principles for Responsible Investment, a joint project of UNEP Finance Initiative and the UN Global Compact. He has led the initiative since its inception in 2003, and was also a member of the Global Reporting Initiative Working Group that developed environmental indicators for the finance sector. Moreover, he has completed a PhD in Economics at the University of Sydney on the effectiveness of shareholder engagement in changing corporate behaviour. James has a background in law, IT and environmental protection. Rachel Lowry – Board Member Rachel is a trained Zoologist, and is General Manager, Community Conservation for Zoos Victoria. Merging her conservation and education training, Rachel develops and implements community conservation programs that influence sustainable behaviour change. Rachel has developed award winning conservation education programs that have tackled sustainability issues both locally and globally. Her most recent project invites the community to tackle the coltan mining issue threatening gorilla’s in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Rachel sits on the International Zoo Educators (IZE) board and is looking forward to working with the next generation of environmentally responsible leaders to create a future that supports the needs of all living species (humans included!).
Board Profiles Glenn Bartlett – Board Member Glenn Bartlett spent the first 10 years of his career working in advertising and marketing for the likes of Saatchi & Saatchi, AMV BBDO, Nestle and Unilever. It was at Unilever, while pondering a pot of noodles that everything changed for him. He became aware of the Palm Oil crisis, the fate of Orangutans, and the deadly role of his seemingly innocent noodles. It didn’t take long for Glenn to realise this was only the thin end of sustainability crisis wedge, and set out to do something about it. Two years of exploration and study later, Glenn now realises it’s not a lack of knowledge that’s the issue, but a lack of leadership and communication. This realisation has Glenn heading back to the world of advertising, determined to use the dark art for good, by linking sustainability causes and brands for mutual benefit. In an effort to better understand the business case for sustainability, Glenn has just written NAB’s 2009 Corporate Responsibility Report. Larissa Brown - Board Member and Executive Director Larissa Brown is the 2008 Australian Young Environmentalist of the Year and the Founder of the Centre for Sustainability Leadership. Larissa has personally interviewed 100 of the world’s greatest sustainability leaders across twenty countries and 5 continents on what it takes to cause real systemic change towards a sustainable world. She is a member of the Ministers Reference Council on Climate Change Adaptation which advises the State Environment Minister, participated in the Prime Minister’s 2020 Summit in 2008 and has worked as a research scientist at the Australian National University. Awards include: the 2009 Australian Geographic Young Conservationist of the Year; being named as one of Melbourne 100 most influential people and one of Melbourne’s ten most influential environmentalists by The Age Magazine in 2007; the 2006 British Council award for Communicating Climate Change and the 2006 Brian Robinson Fellowship. She was selected to represent Asian and Pacific youth at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Bali in 2007.
Leadership Team Profiles Larissa Brown - Executive Director (See Board profile) Stephen McGrail – Melbourne Program Manager Following four years of consulting to industry, government and communities on sustainability issues, Stephen has embraced his passion for learning and development in facilitating the Melbourne Fellowship. He combines this passion with a strong knowledge of sustainability issues and a desire to bring out the best in others and enable systemic change. Stephen’s views on sustainability and business have been regularly published in The Age newspaper. In true Gen X/Y style Stephen’s career has shifted direction multiple times. Stephen has worked in communication and marketing, sustainability consulting at Futureye Pty Ltd, and, most recently, as a university lecturer. Prior to developing a passion for sustainability and future thinking he was an award winning social analyst and advertising strategist and holds a Bachelor of Business (marketing) and Diploma of Creative Advertising and Copywriting. Stephen has had such weird and diverse job titles as “cool hunter”, brand planner, advertising copywriter, and, since completing a Master of Science (Strategic Foresight) in 2005, “foresight practitioner”, and occasionally “futurist”. He is proud to add sustainability leadership program facilitator to these.
Kate Harris – Sydney Program Manager Kate is passionate about the continued learning and development of both herself and others. This is achieved through engaging individuals with their own vision and creativity for sustainability and leadership.
Ariana Bourke – Online Program Director Ariana has a creative and ethical entrepreneurial mindset that has taken her from a career in advertising to her current work in sustainability, setting up the innovative Online Program at the Centre for Sustainability Leadership.
A former business coach, facilitator/ mediator and performer, Kate’s style is supportive, motivational and innovative.
In between the transition from consumer goods marketing to online sustainability leadership education, she managed and developed London’s largest eco-aware, health and organic beauty centre before starting her own green business. Her company created a 300-page guide about sustainable living for the London market.
Having recently completed a Master of Arts (Social Ecology), Kate is dedicated to empowering individuals to achieve positive and sustainable change throughout communities, organisations and across the world. With over 15 years experience in health care, Kate also has a Diploma of Applied Science (Nursing), Diploma of Energetic Healing and is a qualified meditation teacher. Kate also believes that awareness of self, development and integrity of human values, communication and negotiation skills are all key factors in achieving success in the areas of leadership and sustainability.
Before returning to Melbourne in 2009 she managed the rebranding for the renewable energy company, the RES group. Ariana has an interest in creating value-driven projects and businesses that respect the triple bottom line and are a joy for people to be involved with.
Adeline Lee – Office and Communications Manager Adeline started off at the Centre as an Executive Assistant but was recently appointed as the Office and Communications Manager. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (Journalism) degree from Monash University and has had her work published in several publications including mX and Stack. As the Office and Communications Manager, Adeline manages the office, the HR team, the Speakers’ Bureau, the finance team, the volunteers and provides assistance to anyone in the office who needs it. She is the general go-to girl for all things Centre-related. Adeline joined the Centre because she was keen on volunteering and gaining experience in the not-for-profit world. She is interested in seeing the programs develop and watching the impact it has on the community. Since joining the Centre, she has gained a better appreciation for sustainability issues.
Sponsors and Donors
Governance The Centre for Sustainability Leadership is a registered, not-for-profit company limited by guarantee governed by the Corporations Act. The Centre is an Income Tax Exempt Charity with Tax Deductibility Status (DGR). The Centre is not politically-aligned. The Centre places major importance on governance issues. Operation of the Centre is overseen by a high quality independent board (see page 63). 2009 has seen a strong focus on securing the Centreâ€™s financial sustainability, on high-level strategic planning and on developing the policies and procedures to support the Centreâ€™s planned expansions.
David and Louise Gifford James Gifford Dennoch Fund
Editorial Committee Tony Robertson (editor) Larissa Brown Ariana Bourke Designer Brendan Patterson Photography John Day and Paul Parris Mila Robles Writers Tony Robertson Morgan Langdon Urna Tuladhar Gemma Creegan Elizabeth Winkelman Dana Hennessy Jared Haube Julie Zilko
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Read about what the Centre for Sustainability Leadership got up to in 2009.