alex

President

Alex Van Beek

Charged with providing leadership and direction to the committee, the President is responsible for ensuring that the committee fulfills its responsibilities for governance and success. The President is generally the spokesperson and should work to maintain key relationships within and outside the committee.

It’s taken 50 years, a chequered career path and 2 degrees (social geography and psychology) to finally find my calling as a social systems researcher. With that aim, I am now at the tail end of a doctorate focussed on how collaborative community-based research can create social change. It may sound boring, but it’s not!

We all know our natural environment with the incredible life it holds, is in serious jeopardy. It is now that we need as many people as possible working together to turn this around. I believe that there are certain principles that can help this along. These include being strengths and solutions focussed; valuing diversity and collective creativity; and sharing decision-making and resources. While it can take a while to get it moving, the ability of collective action, based on inclusive, empowering and positive relationships, can do amazing things.

At a personal level, my sister and I own 30 acres at Calico Creek. Our aim is to rehabilitate our land back into wildlife habitat while still maintaining space for our 4 spoilt horses and 3 gorgeous little cows.

EXPERIENCE

Land-carers are generally focussed on restoring the ecosystems around them, whether these are agricultural, natural or urban. However, in this age of the Anthropocene, it is actually humans who need to change their behaviours and their systems. This is my both my interest and contribution to Gympie Landcare. Through both a wide-ranging career path and my passion for learning, I bring a wealth of both hands-on people knowledge and experience, as well as deep theoretical knowledge of social and systemic change.

SKILLS

I bring the following skills to GDLG:
  • Systems thinking
  • Applied social and wellbeing research
  • Strategy development
  • Excellent people skills
  • Communication and writing skills
  • Innovation, creativity and lateral thinking
  • Marketing, advertising & fundraising

KNOWLEDGE

I bring my own focus on human behaviours and social systems, as well as personal strengths of systems thinking and relational skills to the Gympie Landcare table. Restoring and preserving this beautiful region for many generations to come, will take a collective effort, with many people and organisations working towards this common purpose. I truly believe this is achievable, and that together, we can achieve the extraordinary.

EMPLOYMENT SUMMARY

  • Finalising doctorate “The Opportunities and Challenges of Collaborative Research for Systemic Change. A case example of building ecosystems of support for remote living Indigenous secondary students.”
  • Wellbeing systems researcher
  • Equine soft tissue therapist
  • Frontline manager and process technician in metallurgical processing
  • Eternal student

QUALIFICATIONS

  • Candidate – Doctorate of Philosophy
  • School of Human, Medical and Applied Sciences; CQUniversity.
  • Bachelor of Psychological Science (Honours First Class)
  • Graduate Diploma of Psychological Science (Distinction)
  • Bachelor of Arts, Major: Social Geography; James Cook University of Queensland

COMMUNITY VOLUNTEER ROLES

  • Gympie & District Landcare (previously general committee member)
  • Land for Wildlife – member
  • ANARRA – member

PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS

  • International Society for the Systems Sciences
  • The Systems School Australia
  • Collective Impact Forum
Mel

SECRETARY

Mel Marx

The Secretary is responsible for the documentation and communication of the activities of the committee. The secretary is the primary administration and legal officer of the committee and provides the links between the committee, members and outside agencies.

From a young age I always felt most alive when I was out in the bush or simply gardening with mum. Mum taught me most of what I know about caring for the soil, nurturing wildlife and growing things.

Watching how we are destroying our land at an alarming rate meant I needed to stop talking and do something. So we bought a 40-hectare farm in Wolvi to start restoring our own piece of land. I believe that caring for the earth starts with an individual. The more individuals that do that will eventually bring a tipping point of earth restoration.

I joined Gympie Land Care to learn how to make a difference, particularly using native plants and sustainable land management practices. Being invited to join the management committee is an unexpected privilege where I hope to use my experience in organisation effectiveness to assist the organisation to get more focused and organised so that we can support those individuals who are going to give us the restoration tipping point.

EXPERIENCE

I ascribe to the philosophy that everything rises and falls on leadership…John Maxwell.

I have spent most of my career leading high performing teams across the globe, successfully transcending different cultures while swapping traditional office management for virtual team management.

SKILLS

I bring the following skills to GDLG:
  • Business & financial management
  • Project & change management
  • Corporate governance
  • Entrepreneur

KNOWLEDGE

I am regenerative farmer with a thirst for information on how to restore and improve the land around us.

I am hungry for knowledge on all things related to regenerative farming and consider myself a lifelong learner.

EMPLOYMENT SUMMARY

  • Project Manager, Cobham Aviation Services
  • Managing Director, Summer Grace Pty Ltd
  • Owner, Meza Hospitality Solutions
  • Enterprise Manager, Northey Street City Farm
  • General Manager PMO, Rio Tinto

QUALIFICATIONS

  • Bachelor (Hons) Business and Corporate Communications
  • PMP, Project Management Institute

COMMUNITY VOLUNTEER ROLES

  • Secretary, Gympie District Landcare Group

PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS

  • Project Management Institute
Photo_Liz_Stewart

TREASURER

Liz Stewart

The Treasurer is responsible for the financial supervision of the organisation to allow the committee to provide good governance.
The Treasurer is the chief financial officer whose tasks include oversight of the preparation of annual budgets, planning for the organisations financial future and monitoring the organisations revenue and expenditure. It is desirable that the treasurer is well organised and possesses a level of financial expertise.

My husband Peter and I moved into the Mary Valley region in 2020 having lived in many locations around Australia as well as Asia, Europe, and USA.

I am inspired by the outdoors and how we as custodians look after this great land.

I am often referred to as a ‘Change Junkie’ as I am always seeking to improve everything in and around me and certainly never standing still!

EXPERIENCE

My aim for GDLG was to bring my experience to and drive its growth and sustainability to ensure a viable community organisation for now and the future.

SKILLS

I bring the following skills to GDLG:
  • Financial, business and change management
  • Portfolio, program, project management
  • Vendor and contract management
  • Corporate and board governance
  • Strategy development
  • Stakeholder management

KNOWLEDGE

I have over 40 years’ experience working with private and public sector organisations around the world (Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia, United States of America and Luxembourg).

I have excellent communication, insight, and stakeholder management capabilities, with a key focus of developing relationships and networks.

I have been highly successful in embedding a culture of innovation and is passionate about developing and building capability. I am known for my ability to drive successful outcomes.

EMPLOYMENT SUMMARY

  • Principal, 2CC Mentoring & Coaching
  • Principal, Stewart Advisory & Project Management
  • Director Consulting Services, CGI Australia
  • Senior Manager, Pricewaterhouse
  • Management & IT Consultant, SMS
  • Project Director, Dept of Justic (Vic) Emergency Management 

QUALIFICATIONS

  • Master of Project Management
  • Certified Change Management Consultant
  • Accredited Company Secretary

COMMUNITY VOLUNTEER ROLES

  • Treasurer, Gympie District Landcare Group
  • Director, PMI Project Management Institute QLD Chapter
  • Member, Lions Coolum

PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS

  • PMI – Project Management Institute
Sandi Cohen Management Committee

Committee Member

Sandi Cohen

The purpose of this position is to bring additional and desired skills to the Management Committee.

I have always had a sense of adventure, fun, a love of nature and the natural world, and a passion for growing and providing people with clean nutritious food and promoting healthy, happy lifestyles.

My husband David and I were certified organic from 2000 until 2022 operating a commercial intensive horticulture farm supplying quality food to Australia and at times overseas. Having now sold the farm I still have a passion for developing local sustainable clean food and supporting farmers and landholders to manage our environment and ecosystems, to ensure the profits we make from farming is not at the expense of the planet.

I always have held a strong belief in Landcare, and I am keen to contribute from my business, farming and community experience.  I have also spent many years working in the government and private sectors as a Local Area Coordinator and have benefitted from extensive training in building sustainable and inclusive communities

EXPERIENCE

My interest in GDLG is to ensure its relevance and value to farmers and land managers is maintained.

It is critical when managing our country for profit or lifestyle we are good custodians of the natural environment and ensure its continuing improvement.

SKILLS

I bring the following skills to GDLG:
  • Farm business management
  • Organic system operation
  • Community organisation management
  • Training and facilitation

KNOWLEDGE

Natural Resource knowledge resides with the people who do the work on the ground. Participatory learning, staying connected and having access to higher level skills and knowledge as required are essential elements of this process. Landcare is a unique platform for this purpose.

EMPLOYMENT SUMMARY

  • Director and Partner Biofields Pty Ltd
  • Support Coordinator Staffing Options
  • Local Area Coordinator Queensland Government – Gympie Region
  • Company Secretary Galeru Pty Ltd

QUALIFICATIONS

  • Cert IV in Training and Assessment
  • Diploma of Horticulture in Organic Management
  • Diploma of Community Services Coordination
  • Graduate Building Rural Leaders Foundation Program and Facilitation Roles
  • Extensive training and qualifications in the disability sector and community development

COMMUNITY VOLUNTEER ROLES

  • Current: Committee, Gympie District Landcare Group
  • Previous: Member and President of numerous community committees including rural leadership

PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS

  • Nil Current
Maree

Past President

Maree Gillott

The Past President is the Committee member charged with assisting the incoming President to move into the role seamlessly, providing advice and guidance with the benefit of prior experience in the role. It is important for the ensuring the transfer of the skills and knowledge that are necessary to run and organisation of this size.

After 31 years of running my own legal practice in Logan, together with other business interests, my husband David and I moved to Wolvi in 2018.  We were lucky enough to find our way to a well-watered cattle property in the foothills of Mt Wolvi which will be keeping us well occupied in our “non-retirement”.  At last, I have both the means, and the opportunity to put all the theories I have accumulated from the permaculture/ sustainable agriculture reference books sitting on my shelves and apply them to our new place. The aim is simple- I am just looking to leave our small patch of the world in better shape than we found it.

Being able to contribute to Landcare will hopefully allow me to help spread the seeds of change even further. Becoming a part of Landcare will hopefully allow me to help spread the seeds of change even further.

EXPERIENCE

I’ve always been involved in community organizations of one type or another and the opportunity to combine my experience in not-for-profit management and my long-held interest in sustainable land management was too good to pass up. I’ve got a particular interest in permaculture and regenerative agriculture, as it has long been apparent to me that industrialized methods of farming are making us, and what we eat, sicker than we have ever been.

SKILLS

I bring the following skills to GDLG:

  • Sustainable and organic agriculture
  • Legal advice & writing
  • Strategy development
  • Corporate & Board governance
  • Marketing & Advertising
  • Fundraising

KNOWLEDGE

I bring over 30 years of management, leadership and not-for-profit experience which positions me well to steer GDLG into the future and remain relevant for the community we serve.

EMPLOYMENT SUMMARY

  • Regenerative Farmer, the farm@Wolvi
  • Principal Director, ACS Legal Solutions
  • Chair, Logan Country Community Bank
  • Australian Army Reserve

QUALIFICATIONS

  • Bachelor’s degree, Arts and Law

COMMUNITY VOLUNTEER ROLES

  • Board Member – Qld Water and Land Carers Inc – QWALC
  • President, Gympie District Landcare Group
  • Qld Law Society- Conveyancing Law and Practice Subcommittee, and seminar speaker (past)
  • Logan Country Community Bank

PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS

  • Qld Law Society (past)
  • Army Reserve Capt (retd)
Picture1

Committee Member

Lynn Wilbraham

The purpose of this position is to bring additional and desired skills to the Management Committee.

EXPERIENCE

Growing up on a farm and then working in and running businesses in a wide range of industries with many different people, has given me the skills and knowledge to appreciate the diversity of our world and the challenges facing our environment.

I have been involved and volunteered in many organisations which led me to value and appreciate the time and commitment to developing a successful, sustainable organisation.

I am passionate about protecting our natural environments and animals and doing all I can to promote awareness about simple yet powerful actions we can take to ensure they are in safe hands and looked after for generations to come.

SKILLS

I bring over 30 years’ experience working with and in community organisations and businesses at all levels of growth. 

Strategic Planning

Project management

Export market development

Marketing and promotions

Network and Cluster Development.

EMPLOYMENT SUMMARY

Self-employed – Business development and training facilitator

Strengthening Business Facilitator – Deloitte

Entrepreneurship Facilitator – Regional Business HQ

Grant Attraction advisor – Gympie Regional Council 

Manager Economic Development – Gympie Regional Council

QUALIFICATIONS

Master of Business Administration

Bachelor of Business Marketing

Diploma of Local Government Administration

Certificate IV in Training and Assessment

COMMUNITY VOLUNTEER ROLES

Current – Vice President Weeroona Management Committee

Past President and Past member Gympie Cooloola Rotary

Coordinator – Project AWARE Beach and Underwater Cleanups 

Judge Sunshine Coast Business Woman of the Year, Gympie Women in
        Business and Gympie Chamber of Commerce Business Awards

PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS

Associated Country Women of the World member


Want to join the team?

Management Committee Vacancies

Governance Secretary

We are looking for somebody ready and willing to step up into a leadership role. Could this be you? Contact us for more details.

Vice President

If you would like to contribute to our vision of a healthy biosphere, please reach out today.

MC member (Finance and business support)

If you have sound financial and business experience and are ready to contribute back to community, contact us today.

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