Melinda Bowen, Member
Melinda Bowen is a Program Officer in Victoria’s Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP). She works for the regional office for Greater Melbourne on climate change adaptation projects including the administration of associated grant programs, promotion of green infrastructure to reduce heat in urban areas and address climate challenges and also supports programs which improve biodiversity outcomes and help Victorians connect with and act for nature.
Helen Corney, Member
Helen works as an Environmental Project Officer for the municipality of Nillumbik. As a research affiliate at RMIT University she explores the relationship between human well-being and nature and the implications this has for environmental management. A passionate gardener and lover of wildlife, Helen is also on the Committee of Management for the Burke Rd Billabong Reserve.
Lee Harrison, Member
Lee Harrison is an urban ecologist with an interest in integrating ecological theory into city strategy and operations. She has a background in ecological consulting and research, with a particular emphasis on the impacts of urban and linear infrastructure on wildlife. She believes management of novel ecosystems requires novel thinking.
Ray Ison, Member
Ray is Professor of Systems, The Open University, UK and a Director of the Systemic Development Institute Australia. He has made significant research contributions with practical application in fields of systemic governance, environmental decision making, natural resource management, and agricultural/food systems. His interests include: Where do people and their social needs fit within economics? How can local governance work for local people?
Irene Kelly, Member
Irene is a member of the Knox Environment Society Committee. She is a co-founder of the Knox Gardens for Wildlife Program and is a strong community champion and mentor for the network.
Anne Makhijani, Member
Anne is a community member with a strong commitment to nature conservation and biodiversity. She volunteers in many community groups and Council initiatives in the Whitehorse area. Anne is passionate about the potential and scope that habitat improvement on private land can make for biodiversity. This has driven her interest in Gardens for Wildlife Victoria and her role in helping to establish Whitehorse Gardens for Wildlife.
Ricardo Simao, Member
Ricardo is the Environmental Systems Manager at the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria. Starting his career in local government, he has worked in the field of conservation and land management for over 18 years. Ricardo believes that we cannot rely only on government agencies and protected areas to conserve species. To prevent the current extinction crisis, we must become enamoured with nature and create habitats in our own gardens, linking patches of bushland habitat that are currently fragmented by the urban and rural environment.
Nadine Gaskell, Chair
Nadine is the Biodiversity Coordinator at Knox City Council. Nadine worked with the Knox Environment Society to design and implement the highly successful Knox Gardens for Wildlife Program. Nadine is passionate about the value of urban biodiversity. She believes conservation of nature supports a happy, healthy and connected community and gardens for wildlife programs exemplify this.
Laura Mumaw, Program facilitator
Laura serves on the Victorian Environment Friends Network (VEFN) Committee. Her background includes scientific and executive roles in zoos/aquariums internationally and on boards responsible for environmental stewardship. Laura recently finished a PhD at RMIT about wildlife gardening and its role in building community capacity to care for local biodiversity and strengthen wellbeing. She is currently an RMIT postdoctoral researcher.
Philip Wallis, Vale
Phil was a project officer with the Victorian Catchment Management Council. He brought a practical approach to working collaboratively, as well as deep expertise in using systems thinking and social research methodologies. With deep sorrow we note the passing of Phil early in 2018 and thank him for his legacy in establishing our network and its foundation principles. Vale Phil.