Convocation of UWA Graduates

Members of Convocation Council

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Under the provisions of the UWA Act, the roles ascribed to Convocation are managed by the Council of Convocation (comprising 21 members, the Warden of Convocation, the Deputy Warden and the Immediate Past Warden).  Each year elections are held for 7 members of Council as well as for the leadership positions.  All members of Convocation are eligible to be nominated for these positions and to vote in the annual elections for members of Convocation Council.

The Council of Convocation meets on a monthly basis and reports back to all members of Convocation at two general meetings (known as Ordinary Meetings) held in March and September each year. Under its constitution (as outlined in the UWA Statutes), certain major decisions can only be approved by Convocation when meeting in full session at these Ordinary Meetings.

The current members of Convocation Council are as follows:

Council Members

Dr Doug McGhie
Warden of Convocation 2017-2018
Council Member (2013)2016

Doug McGhieAs a Councillor of Convocation for the last five years, the last two with a year as Treasurer and then 2017 as Warden, Doug has focussed on improving value and increasing recognition for Convocation, developing the strategic plan, initiating the new Engagement Committee and promoting the visibility and a higher profile identity for Convocation within the University community, from students to staff and graduates. He aims to elevate the status of Convocation within the University and on campus, building on its legal status as a part of the University. There are many stories to be told of our graduates contributing to the global community.
He has B Sc (Agric) Hons (1972), MBA (1991), PhD (1981), all from UWA, a prize winner in the MBA. He is Managing Director of Science Matters Pty Ltd, consultants in science, technology and regional development and a Fellow of the Institute of Management ConsultantsHis research into water repellent soils developed the effective soil wetting agents still used 35 years later.
Before Convocation Council he was President and is a Life Member of the UWA Graduate Management Association and President of the Graduate Management Association of Australia, member Advisory Board for the UWA GSM and Board member of the UWA Torpedoes (National League Water Polo) for ten years, the last four as President. He is a Life Member of that club. He was on the Advisory Committee for the Australian University Games in 2010.
Doug remains active in community and sporting organisations. He is a Life Member of Scarboro Surf Life Saving Club serving as Captain, Deputy President, President and coach. He has won the Surf Life Saving WA Volunteer of the Year, President’s Medal and Coach of the Year awards, and a Local Government Community Service award. He has coached junior and senior sport for over 45 years, including state and national championship medalists. He coached the University Football Club for three years, playing for eight years.

Dr Joan Pope OAM
Deputy Warden of Convocation (2016-2018)
Council Member (1984)

Joan Pope
After serving as Deputy Warden alongside Warren Kerr (Warden 2016) and Doug McGhie (Warden 2017), attending numerous Graduation ceremonies and innumerable committee meetings, working on the style and organisation of the 50th Reunions and contributing to the editorial board for UNIVIEW, Dr Joan Pope OAM is volunteering her time and energy as Deputy Warden for one more year.
Taking advantage of being a retiree living close to campus, Joan has the ability to be present at the University during business hours and assist the Convocation staff member. Joan is a former Warden of Convocation, who holds a Chancellors Medal (2006) and has a keen interest in the history of the University. This year, she was pleased to be associated with the Centenary of the Dramatic Society, of which she was President during her student years in 1954. Alongside Pauline Tremlett, Joan is also busy gathering material on the history of Convocation itself, on writing The Chronicle of Convocation, and on organising an event that marks the Centenary of Armistice Day for WWI, which involved many Convocation members, staff and students from the University of Western Australia.
Joan recognises that future challenges for the Convocation of UWA Graduates include encouraging a greater awareness and understanding of Convocation amongst UWA Staff, developing graduate opportunities for 'the innovation quarter at the crossroads' (Old Masonic Hall), recognising the need for a UWA Museum of Memorabilia and the celebration of Graduate achievements.
As a graduate of UWA [BA; Dip Ed.) and ECU [B.Ed, M.Ed.) and Monash University [PhD], Joan has specialised qualifications in Music Education, Movement, Mime, Drama, Art and Design.
She has been awarded the 2016 National AUSDANCE 'Services to Dance Education,' only recently stepped down as National President of Dalcroze Australia, and continues to travel as a teacher and examiner in this educational artistic discipline.

Adjunct Professor Warren Kerr AM
Elected member of Senate (2015)2019
Immediate Past Warden of Convocation (2017-2019)
Warden of Convocation (2013–2017)
Council Member (2010-2013)

Warren KerrWarren has been a member of Convocation Council since 2010 and strongly believes in the potential of Convocation to take a pro-active role in assisting the University to achieve it’s objective of being one of the world’s top 50 universities by 2050. He was elected as the Warden of Convocation in 2013 and served in that role until March 2017.
Warren graduated from UWA with a Bachelor of Architecture in 1974 and is a National Director of HAMES SHARLEY Architects.  In addition to his formal qualifications in architecture, he has a Masters Degree from the University of NSW in health administration and planning, and has spent most of his career specialising in the planning and design of major hospital projects.
In addition to his project workload, Warren maintains an active interest in teaching and research as an Adjunct Professor at UWA, as a member of an international working group aimed at improving the planning and design of health facilities and through various voluntary roles for the Institute of Architects and the Australasian College of Health Service Management.
Warren is a former State and National President of the Australian Institute of Architects and a former State and National Chair of the Australian Council of Built Environment Design Professions.
In January 2009, Warren was appointed as a member of the Order of Australia for his services to architecture and his contribution to the planning and design of major health facilities.

Dr Mark Andrich
Council Member (2016)2019

Mark AndrichMark is a sustainability and finance specialist with three degrees from UWA. He is also a former UWA Honorary Research Fellow. Mark completed his Bachelor of Engineering in 2001, his Bachelor of Commerce in 2001 and his PhD on the topic of sustainability under conditions of wealth inequity in Western Australia in 2013 at the Centre for Water Research.

Mark has published articles in engineering and sustainability. Mark's experience in sustainability and finance spans 15 years and includes eight years in the US where he worked with start-up companies delivering world-class fund management services. Mark is familiar with the way boards and committees function, having served on a number in both Australia and the US. Mark's experiences at UWA and internationally highlighted the value of high quality education and research and he hopes to bring his experience and skills to the Convocation Council in order to improve the University.

Clinical Professor Lesley Cala
Council Member (2010)2020

MD  thesis -Neuroradiological Diagnosis of Brain Tumours.
Clinical neuroradiologist  S.C.G.H. 1972-2000, P.M.H 1973-2000.
Research neuroradiologist  U.K. 2005 - current.
Clinical Professor  UWA 1991-2020.
Chief investigator, Australian Research Centre for Medical 
Engineering 2000-2008
Adjunct Professor Murdoch University 2002-2008.
Numerous published papers, research presentations & research grants.
International Stroke Trials (5): 2005-2012, 2012-2013; 2013-2018 (5) – participant.
Nominee for Teaching Excellence Awards UWA 2015 and Curtin University 2016.

Community Service
Past President, Hon Life Member, Advisor Health for Graduate Women WA Inc.
Past Vice-President, Adviser Health, National Council of Women of Australia.
Adviser, International Relations and Peace, & Co-ordinator Communications, International Council of Women 2003-2012
Member Advisory Council to WA Minister for Women’s Interests – 2010-2013
Vice-President, Hon Life Member, National Council of Women WA 2009-2013
BreastScreen WA, Community Reference Group 2009-2019Fund raiser for Archbishop Winter Appeals 1988 - 2000

Convocation and University Service
Member Council of Convocation - 2010-2020
Convenor Awards Committee Convocation 2013-2015
Member Senate, UWA serving 15 years to 2010
Honorary Fellow, St. Catherine’s College, UWA
UWA Centenary Trust for Women – Founding Patron
Radiological Council of WA, (Tertiary Institutions’ delegate).
I believe education is the key to eradication of poverty and elimination of conflict.
I would like to offer my community experience and access to networks to UWA as a Member of Council to ensure those disadvantaged obtain a higher education.

Dr Julie Crews
Council Member (2017)2020

Dr Julie CrewsJulie commenced her career in education and her experience has included urban, rural, interstate and overseas appointments. During her career, Julie held various leadership roles including Deputy Principal, District Professional Development Manager and Facilitator for the professional development of teachers. A career in the public sector followed as a senior labour relations and small business advisor in the State Government. She has held senior positions across both state and federal government agencies, including the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission, The Office of the Auditor General and the Department of the Premier and Cabinet.
Julie holds a Diploma of Teaching, Bachelor of Education, Masters of Industrial Relations and a Doctorate of Business Administration. Her doctoral thesis examined ethical leadership and was conducted with Chief Executive Officers of both the public and private sectors in Western Australia and Victoria. Her research and corporate work has covered such areas as values held by university students, the ethical dilemmas faced by local government planners, police and executives in Sri Lanka. Julie conducts many forums on ethics and leadership in both the public and private sectors in Australia. She has worked in the area of business ethics and governance in Sri Lanka, Singapore, China, Indonesia, Vietnam and Cambodia.
Julie teaches business ethics and corporate governance at Edith Cowan University. This position provides a unique opportunity to be directly involved in the university sector and understand the challenges facing both academics and students. She maintains strong professional networks through her membership of the UWA University Club.

Ms Devon Cuneo
Council Member (2011)2021

Devon CuneoDevon commenced Psychology at UWA in 1966 but left to work in North America for 2 years then moved to Europe where she studied French Language and Literature at the Sorbonne.  Later, she completed a Teaching Diploma at Nedlands Secondary Teachers College and then successfully undertook a double degree in Italian and German at UWA, during which time she was awarded an Italian Government Scholarship to study in Siena.
For 17 years Devon taught Japanese and French at PLC having later studied Japanese at UWA and Ryukoko University in Kyoto. During this time, she served on various committees and was involved in several exchange programmes.  In 2001-2, Devon studied post-graduate linguistics externally which led to her teaching at Junshin and Kagoshima Universities and on her return to Australia to teaching EALD. She currently does relief teaching and is an IELTS examiner.
Devon’s two sons and husband (deceased) are also UWA graduates. Her focus is now volunteer work, particularly with Save the Children UWA where she not only works preparing for the big book sales, but also holds community sales throughout the year at local fairs and shopping centres using Guild Volunteers as helpers.
A dedicated and involved member of Convocation Council for the past 7 years, Devon has contributed wherever possible and worked actively on the Awards, Events and Promotions Committee. She has sat on the selection panels for the various Convocation awards since her time on Council. She is also a busy member of the PLCOCA committee.

Adjunct Professor, Dr Brett Davies
Council Member (2016)2020

Brett DaviesCTA, AIAMA, BJuris, LLB, Dip Ed, BArts(Hons), LLM(UWA), MBA, SJD(UWA)
Dr Davies is a practising lawyer, Accredited Mediator and Chartered Tax Adviser. He is an Adjunct Professor in tax and Superannuation. Brett has a passion for education, with multiple degrees and post-graduate qualifications (five from UWA). He even married a primary school teacher. Brett lectures on estate planning, tax and Superannuation throughout Australia. His love of UWA includes: Currie Hall resident tutor (1985-1989) and Convocation Committee (1988-1993 and 2016).
Brett has given back to the community including: President Art Gallery of WA Foundation and Library Board of WA. Brett was chair of many Law Society and Law Council committees. He was elected to the Legal Practice Board.
Brett founded his legal practice in 1994. Brett seeks to utilise his knowledge and skills to contribute to the Convocation Council.

Dr Angela Evangelinou-Yiannakis
Council Member (2017)2020

Dr Angela Evangelinou-YiannakisDr Angela Evangelinou-Yiannakis is a graduate of The University of Western Australia; BA (1979), GradDipEd (1980), MEd (Hons) (2002), EdD (2009). She was also awarded the Teacher’s Higher Certificate from the Department of Education WA (1984), and has three certificates for competency in Modern Greek.
A secondary school teacher, Angela has been in the profession for 38 years, teaching in all tiers; primary, secondary and tertiary, the latter of which includes teaching pre-service teachers at The Graduate School of Education, UWA, and at The University of Notre Dame Australia. She has been a teacher and leader in the Independent sector since 1994, including being Assistant Principal, Acting Principal, and Foundation Principal. Angela is in her third year as a School Academic Mentor for Deakin University and Teach for Australia, mentoring 35 Associates in 15 secondary schools in WA and one secondary school in Victoria.  Concurrently, she is the WA Regional Lead for Australian Catholic University and Teach for Australia, leading a team of five Academic Mentors, and having responsibility for 42 Associates in 15 secondary schools.
As an Honorary Research Fellow of The Graduate School of Education, UWA, since 2011, Angela has had a number of refereed publications, including chapters and a book, which was based on her doctoral research. She represents UWA on the Executive Committee of the Western Australian Institute for Educational Research, contributing to and promoting local research in education.
Among four awards from UWA, Angela was also the runner up for the West Australian Citizen of the Year Award (2006) for services offered to the Greek community of WA.  In 2017, she received the Outstanding Professional Service Award from the Professional Teaching Council of Western Australia for her long-term services to the maintenance and promotion of the teaching of Modern Greek in WA. 
A community-minded volunteer, Angela remains very keen to continue contributing to the Council of Convocation.

Dr Libby Feutrill
Council Member (2016)2019

Libby FeutrillI received a Bachelor of Engineering, with First Class Honours in Mechanical Engineering, from UWA in 1990 and a PhD in Materials Engineering from UWA in 1998, jointly supervised by Professor Robert Street and Professor Paul McCormick. As an undergraduate I participated in the Gledden Study Tour for Engineering students to the Soviet Union (1989); during my post-graduate studies I was the recipient of an Australian Post-Graduate Research Award and an Australian Federation of University Women Bursary.
Since graduating, I have nearly twenty years of experience with major corporations in the Australian resources sector, in both technical and commercial roles, most recently as an energy market analyst with Woodside. This has included postings in the Pilbara and far north Queensland, which allowed me to become involved with local community organisations such as the Weipa Arts Council and take part in volunteer field research activities with the Australian Institute of Marine Science.
My current involvement with the University is as a member of the Human Research Ethics Committee (since 2013), having previously served two terms in a similar role at the University of Notre Dame. I am also a member of the Board for my local government primary school and continue to be an active member (since 1986) of the University Hockey Club.

Dr Agi Gedeon
Council Member (2015)2019

Agi GedeonAgi Gedeon is an alumnus of UWA (BScHons 1984) and later University of Adelaide (PhD 1996). As a Human Molecular Geneticist her research and diagnostics career of 16 years generated over 60+ papers and still holds an H-factor of 32. She was nominated for the Australian Academy of Science Gottschalk medal and Tall Poppy (SA) award in 2000 in recognition of her outstanding contribution to research in medical sciences.
She has worked for a molecular biology supplier and startup biotech companies before moving to the Pilbara where she put her energy into a range of administrative opportunities with the Pilbara Division of General Practice, TAFE, RioTinto, Shire of Roebourne, Woodside and Chamber of Commerce & Industry.
Agi returned to UWA in 2010 in the role of Research Development Adviser in International Networks and Collaborations where she worked with researchers across the university to build new multinational projects. She was appointed as the Centre Manager for the State Centre of Excellence in Ecohydrology, then Manager of the WA node of the Integrated Marine Observing System (IMOS) and now works with the Australian National Data Service to make better use of Australia's research data.
She was on the UWA committee for the University Managers Group and freely volunteers during her leisure time for many NFP and community organisations. She is particularly keen to build alumni engagement and community development through the broad-ranging expertise of the members of Convocation.

Emeritus Professor Jenny Gregory AM
Council Member (2018) 2021

Emeritus Professor Jenny GregoryJenny Gregory AM, BA Hons, PhD (UWA), FRHS, is Emeritus Professor of History at The University of Western Australia, where she taught Australian history, heritage, and urban history. She continues to research and to supervise postgraduate students.
She has published widely. Her books include edited collections; A Historian for All Seasons: Essays for Geoffrey Bolton (2017), Seeking Wisdom: a Centenary History of The University of Western Australia (2013) and the Historical Encyclopedia of Western Australia (2009). Her monographs include City of Light: a history of Perth since the fifties, Claremont (with Geoffrey Bolton), and Building a Tradition: a history of Scotch College. She has been Chief Investigator on five Australian Research Council grants.
She was Head, School of Humanities (2009-15) and School of Music (2009-11), Director, Centre for WA History and Director, UWA Press.  She has served on committees of Senate, Academic Council, and Faculty.
Currently she is President of the History Council of WA (2001-06, 2016-), Board member of Australia Day WA (2011-17), Executive member of the National Trust WA, after years as Chair (2008-10) and President (1998-2007). She was Deputy Chair, Australian Council of National Trusts; member, Heritage Council of WA, and ICOMOS’s International Scientific Committee on Interpretation and Presentation of Cultural Heritage Sites.
Her awards include a UWA Excellence in Teaching Award, Commonwealth Centenary Medal and Membership of the Order of Australia (AM) for service to the community as an historian.  She is deeply committed to UWA and its role in the community.

Mr Jeffrey Gunningham
Council Member (2017)2020

Mr Jeffrey GunninghamJeff Gunningham has extensive leadership experience in tertiary education in Australia and internationally. He retired as the Chief Executive of TAFE South Australia in mid-2014 where he was responsible for TAFE activities across the State.
Until late 2010, Jeff was the Principal and Chief Executive of Swansea College, one of the largest further and higher education colleges in Wales, UK. Prior to this he was the inaugural Managing Director of Education and Training International, responsible for international student recruitment and offshore project work for all government schools and TAFE colleges in Western Australia. He has been the CEO of three other colleges in Australia as well as one in the United Arab Emirates.
His expertise is broad based and covers areas such as training partnerships, strategic management, leadership development, managing change, and international business development. Before moving to Adelaide, Jeff was a Ministerial appointment to the Training Accreditation Council in Western Australia. He has extensive experience in developing innovative learning systems, often in partnership with industry and the tertiary education sector. Many of these successes have been presented at conferences across the world.
Jeff Gunningham has an Honours Degree in Mechanical Engineering, a Graduate Diploma in Management, and a Master of Business Administration. He’s also a Senior Honorary Fellow of the LH Martin Institute, University of Melbourne.

Mr Graham Harmsworth
Council Member (2015-2017) 2018-2021

Mr Graham HarmsworthI graduated in 2012 with an Executive Master of Business Administration (EMBA) (UWA) and was awarded the 2011 Charles Harper Award for leadership and contributions to the student experience at the UWA Business School.  During this time I was an active member of the Graduate Management Association (GMA) serving on this Council as a student representative for five terms.
Since graduation I have continued my association with the GMA holding office as Secretary and Vice President. The GMA has a very close working relationship with Convocation and the Department of Alumni Relations (DAR).
I am an Alumni Ambassador working with DAR and Convocation at the many Graduation ceremonies; enabling me to promote the merits of Convocation to new Alumni.
I am a keen cyclist and am a 'Cycle – Australia' accredited coach and fitness instructor voluntarily giving my time to people who want to get involved with the cycling community to increase their overall health and fitness levels. I also use this skill set to help various charity organisations with their cycling event management.
I am committed to UWA and to the wider community and would like to continue to give back to UWA and the Alumni by being an active Council member of Convocation Council.

Dr Susan King
Council Member (2013)2019

Susan King Susan King holds a PhD (Syracuse University, USA), an MEd, BEd and BA (UWA), and a Teachers Certificate (WA Secondary Teachers College).
Susan is currently a self-employed consultant. She has an extensive knowledge of the Australian higher education, vocational education and training and schools sectors, and of university governance.
Susan has held corporate executive positions as Executive Director (Governance & Planning) at Edith Cowan University, and Executive Director (Strategic Resource Management) with the WA department responsible for the Training sector.
Susan held policy roles in the Commonwealth Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet and the Commonwealth Schools Commission, and policy and resource management roles in the Commonwealth Department of Employment, Education and Training. Earlier, she was an academic in UWA's Department of Education.
Susan is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management. She is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, the Board of Management of Community Vision Inc., the Association for Tertiary Education Management, the Australian Fulbright Alumni Association, and Women on Boards. In 2012 she was invited to join Convocation's Statutes Committee.
Susan received a WA Public Service scholarship to attend a Strategic Public Sector Leaders' Summit, won for her department the Strategic Resource Management category of the Premier's Awards for Public Sector Management, and was awarded a Syracuse University Fellowship and an Australian-American Educational Foundation (Fulbright) Travel Grant. She was a joint winner of the Bertha Houghton Prize in Education (UWA) and Dux of the WA Secondary Teachers College.

Dr Raj Kurup
Council Member (2017)2021

Dr Raj Kurup

M.Eng.Sc (UWA), M.Eng (Delft), PhD (Murdoch), GAICD, FIEAust, NER, CPEng
Raj has been a member of the UWA Convocation Council since 2017. He has been actively involved in facilitating internship and job opportunities for UWA students and fresh graduates, and selecting the recipients of various Convocation scholarships.
Since graduating in 2001, Raj has been closely associated with UWA. He served as an adjunct associate professor for seven years (2009−15). Raj has supervised and mentored many students, and secured external funding for research projects at UWA.
Raj is an award winning environmental engineer. In 2017 he was selected as the Most Innovative Engineer in Consulting by Engineers Australia, and the WA Water Professional of the Year by Australian Water Association.  Raj is the CEO of a multi-award winning, consulting firm, Environmental Engineers International (EEI). He has consulted for the UN, South32, Alcoa, Woodside and BHP. Raj has also authored 60+ publications and holds multiple patents.
Raj is passionate about education and research, and serves as an adjunct professor at the University of Missouri-Columbia, USA and Murdoch University. He believes in strong collaboration between the stakeholders in education and research, including schools, universities, industry, professions and the community.
Raj has extensive board level experience with professional and community organisations. He was the Chair of the Community Advisory Group for the SMRC (2010−14), Chair of the WA chapter of the Sustainable Engineering Society (2004−07), Division Board member of Engineers Australia (2003−4, 2006), and member of Penrhos College Foundation Board (2013-2016).

Councillor Julie Matheson
Council Member (2016)2019

Julie Matheson

Julie Matheson graduated from UWA in 2012 with a degree in Political Science and International Relations, and History. She is a registered Certified Financial Planner with a career in financial services for the past 30 years, and served on the board of the Financial Planning Association of Australia from 2006 to 2016. In 2011, Julie was elected as a Councillor with the City of Subiaco, and re-elected again in 2015 for another four year term. In 2016, Julie received the WA Local Government Merit Award for volunteer services to the Community. 
UWA has worked with the City of Subiaco and the City of Nedlands on projects of mutual interest such as the No. 97 bus services from UWA to the Subiaco train station, recycling of waste water for parks and a partnership with the UWA School of Architecture promoting practical experience in design. As a recent UWA graduate with board member experience and an elected Subiaco Councillor, Julie is well placed to contribute to the roles of Convocation - representative, governance, contribution, engagement and promotion.

Ms Nee Nee Ong
Council Member (2016-2019)

Nee Nee OngNee Nee Ong is a graduate of UWA with Masters in Business Administration (2000) and Bachelor of Engineering (1996). With 22 year’s experience, she currently works as an engineer managing interdisciplinary teams for the delivery of projects and providing electrical design work. Nee Nee has continued her association with UWA, as seen more recently in 2015 as a university accreditation accessor and with UWA volunteer positions, such as mentoring.
Nee Nee has extensive leadership, governance, marketing, event organisation and finance experience with not-for-profit and professional organisations. This is evident with the current positions held with Engineers Australia; member of Congress, member of Electrical College Board and Chair of Women in Engineering. She has strong community links and volunteer involvement with the local community and school.

Mr James Paparo
Council Member (2012-2017) 2021

Mr James PaparoJames Paparo completed a Bachelor of Science (Mathematics major), Bachelor of Economics and a Diploma in Education at The University of Western Australia. In March 2012 he was awarded a Graduate Diploma in International Relations and, in September 2012, a Master of International Relations with Distinction at UWA.
James works as Trade and International Relations Manager at the Western Australian Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development. His previous employment has included ASEAN Desk Manager for the Western Australian Department of Commerce and Trade (now Department of Jobs, Tourism, Science and Innovation), Corporate Development Manager for London-based airport company BAA plc (now Heathrow Airport Holdings Limited), Principal Policy Officer at the Western Australian Department of Premier and Cabinet, and Principal Private Secretary to a former Western Australian Premier.
James was a Member of Convocation Council in 2012 for a one-year term, was co-opted to Council in November 2013 following the resignation of a Council Member, and was elected to Council in 2014 for a three-year term.
He is a member of the Convocation Awards Committee and has provided communications support to this committee and for other Convocation activities.
James is married with three children – one has just completed a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) at UWA, and another has just finished his second year of a Bachelor of Science at UWA.   His four sisters and two brothers are also UWA graduates.

Mr Gary Pennefather
Council Member (2017)2020

Mr Gary PennefatherGary Pennefather graduated with a Bachelor of Engineering in Electrical, Electronics and Communications (1985). Since graduating, he has spent 30 years in the development and commercialisation of a range of innovative WA technologies. Gary has been a founder, senior executive and CEO in a number of companies that have started from UWA and Curtin University research to become successful businesses - both in Perth and the USA.
He is strong supporter of UWA’s mission to drive social and economic development by translating innovative research outcomes to the wider community. Gary has extensive experience in assisting university research groups to get support from industry and to achieve commercial outcomes from their intellectual property and its ongoing development.
Gary is passionate about ensuring that graduating students receive the highest quality education – one which continues to innovate and adapt to meet the demands of a rapidly changing global economy. Gary volunteers his time as a guest lecturer and mentor in the Faculty of ECM and its Masters of Engineering program. He has also helped the faculty establish a new undergraduate course where students learn how to create a startup enterprise. In his spare time, he is a keen amateur cyclist.

Dr Fran Pesich
Council Member(2010-2014) 2021

Dr Fran PesichAfter completing her degree in Architecture, Fran expanded her design interests to include ergonomic design and how organisations function while working in the shipbuilding industry during the 1980’s (design, documentation, contract management and project management). 
After completing an MBA in 1989 (Austrade Prize in International Marketing), Fran joined Bunnings Forest Products as their Logistics Manager which included the development of customer service, process flow capability and the business’s quality management program. The interest in organisations continued and after leaving the Wesfarmers group, Fran worked as a third party auditor with NATA in Queensland, and then became a certified, verifying senior auditor with Quality Assurance Services (now SAI-Global).
After completing a professional doctorate in strategic management (2004) Fran returned to consulting work, predominantly with the Water Corporation of WA (project management, program management, capital investment, asset management) and auditing activities including as an auditor with the Australian Universities Quality Agency (AUQA). Fran has also been an AIPM judge, written award winning AIPM submissions and continues to provide consulting services to large government and private organisations. Fran has also resumed research work at UWA, this time focusing on not-for-profit organisations.
Affiliations are held with a variety of professional associations including the Graduate Management Association and Australian Institute of Company Directors (FAICD). Fran has previously been a member of Convocation Council (2010-2014) and is President of the UWA Historical Society (2012-2014, 2017-).

Mr Ric Stern
Council Member (2018) 2021

Mr Ric SternBrooklyn-born Ric Stern has a Show Business career spanning 51 years, starting at 15 when he started his first band, and performing as a solo artist at US College Campus Coffee Houses with the likes of Billy Crystal, who went on to become a Hollywood Megastar.
As a young tertiary-qualified musician, Ric performed across the US, including the famous Playboy Clubs of New York, New Jersey and Miami Beach. He has since performed in Singapore, Taiwan, Hawaii, Japan and aboard Luxury Cruise Ships for Royalty and Dignitaries from every corner of the globe.
Ric completed two post-graduate qualifications at UWA in 2006. He is a former Music Teacher at Edgewater Primary and has not regretted one moment of his unique dual career path as a senior manager and International Entertainer, who has travelled the world performing as a Singer/Pianist Song-Writer, while also working along the way as a senior manager.
Ric has a diverse and extensive management background in a variety of disciplines. He has a proven record of accomplishment in Business Development and Strategic Management, and established rapport’s with stakeholders in both Public & Private Sectors. Management has been his parallel career stream and, in 1982, Ric occupied the position of Operations Coordinator for Pan American World Airways, directing 43,000 of the airline's staff internationally from his corporate base of operations in Miami, Florida.
Ric has been an active member of Convocation since 2006, and now wishes to actively contribute as a member of Convocation Council.

Mr Jonathan Strauss
Council Member (2011)2019

Jonathan StraussI graduated from UWA with a B. Arch in 1980, and am married with 2 children.
Since graduation, I have worked as an Architect both in Perth and New York.Whilst in living in New York I was a founding member of the UWA Alumni Association, New York.
I now have 2 daughters completing higher degrees at UWA.
I have been a member of the Council of Convocation for the past 5 years.  I am currently working on the Governance Committee.  Previously, I was on the Statutes Committee and the Strategic Plan Working Party.  A primary concern is the required amendments to the UWA Act’s Statutes to allow the introduction of electronic voting and establishing a flexible framework to facilitate the continuing integration and development of electronic communication.
I am a strong supporter of assisting and enabling the views of the Convocation members generally being brought to the table so that informed decisions can be made and the Convocation elected Senators duly informed.
The newly amended UWA Act has significantly changed the underlying structure of UWA governance, including significant reduction elected Convocation representation.  This reduction will require an improved and better directed engagement and involvement with Convocation Senators.
My principal interests in Convocation remain to assist Convocation members and our University to further engage positively with each other, and, to actively demonstrate and promote our role as leaders to the wider community both locally and internationally. 

Mr Tony Tate AM
Council Member (2017)2020

Mr Tony Tate AMBSc UWA, 1967, Dip Met, 1968, Grad Dip Govt Admin, 1977, AICD CD Course, 2008.
Tony worked as a professional meteorologist in the Bureau of Meteorology for 11 years before establishing the first commercial meteorological business in Australia, which he managed for 15 years. He then moved in to post-secondary education as the Managing Director of a TAFE college, the Dean of Science and Engineering at Murdoch University and the Director of Research and Development at Curtin University over a period of 17 years.
Since his retirement in 2011 Tony has continued to work in the university sector on research advisory boards and as a consultant on animal ethics. He chairs a Statutory Authority for the State Government and is a Director of a NFP research based company in Alice Springs. He also continues his voluntary work within the Jewish Community. He was made a Member of the Order of Australia in June 2015 “for significant service to the community through senior roles in peak Jewish welfare, advocacy and sporting organisations, and to tertiary education”.
Tony has extensive experience of university strategy and operations as well a long record of leadership in public and private organisations and hopes to utilise his knowledge and skills in these areas to contribute to the Council of Convocation during his term on Council.

Mr Simon Dawkins
Elected member of Senate (2010) 2018

Mr Simon DawkinsSimon Dawkins is the General Manager of The Oil Mallee Association of Australia which has been in the forefront of developing carbon sequestration and bioenergy programs based on integrated agroforestry programs in the low rainfall areas of WA.
Prior to this Simon had an extensive career in public sector management and strategic policy in the Commonwealth, ACT and WA Governments, including as CEO of the Canberra Theatre Centre and the Perth Theatre Trust, two major performing arts centres in Canberra and Perth.
After joining the Department of the Premier and Cabinet in Western Australia in 1998, he has worked on climate change, emissions trading, sustainability issues, social and economic policy.
Simon has a degree in Economics from UWA, a Graduate Diploma in Education from CCAE and a Master of Philosophy from City University in London and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.