Community Leadership Group

Because every child deserves every chance to reach their full potential

The Community Leadership Group (CLG) of Every Child CQ Inc. consists of Central Queensland leaders who possess a broad range of experience, expertise and networks, and have stood up to the challenge of leading this innovative initiative.

Mick Shearer is the Regional Executive Director, Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services. He has worked in the social services sector for 30 years delivering direct child protection and juvenile justice services, managing multi-disciplinary teams and working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Mick’s experience will provide the CLG with government perspectives.

‘Being part of the CLG allows me to share my expertise, knowledge and experience from many years working in human services with key community leaders to strategically work towards guiding this initiative forward.’

Maxine Brushe has extensive experience in Board governance and community leadership, after serving as a Councillor with the Calliope Shire Council for 13 years, with five years as Deputy Mayor. She also served eight years with the Gladstone Regional Council and completed 25 years service on the Gladstone Area Promotion and Development Ltd, with six years as Chair.

‘By holding an all-encompassing vision we can systematically target specific groups or age cohorts, focus on particular places and pay attention to key issues such as education, health and community participation, at any time.’

Melanie Lippitt-Plumb is an Indigenous woman with a strong passion for social justice and equality. She has broad experience in the community services sector and is dedicated to improving complex social issues and life outcomes for vulnerable and disadvantaged people and families, with a particular personal focus towards child protection.

‘I hope my professional and personal experiences provides the CLG with insight into some big issues facing our most vulnerable children. We must work together to make the big changes needed to ensure our kids don’t slip through the cracks.’

Kevin Ronan is a Professorial Research Fellow in Psychology and Chair in Clinical Psychology at CQUniversity Australia. He is also Chair of the Disaster Reference Group of the Australian Psychological Society. As a clinical psychologist, he specialises in hazards and disasters, problems of youth and families, effects of disasters, trauma, conduct disorder, anxiety disorders, child maltreatment, and schizophrenia.

‘Working with children and families for over 30 years, I know  current policy and practices haven’t satisfactorily solved the problems of children, youth and families. I believe this collective impact approach provides an opportunity for positive change.’

Sue Williams is a Public Health Nutritionist and Lecturer in Nutrition at CQUniversity with expertise in the development and implementation of research involving the health and well-being of children and adolescents. She has worked extensively with schools to implement collaborative research projects, coordinated delivery of the PEACH™ Qld program in Central Qld and continues to research child and family health.

‘I’m convinced we can achieve more by tapping into the resources and passion in our communities. We will form meaningful and effective collaborations with a strong focus on collective decision-making processes, measurable outcomes and sustainability.’

Bronwyn Fenech is the Managing and Artistic Director of FMSTUDIOS, Rockhampton. She is a founding member of several business networking groups including the Regional Women’s Network CQ, the Museum of Central Qld Inc and the Capricorn Launch Pad Young Professionals. She has been a finalist in the TELSTRA Business  Awards, mentors new business owners and entrepreneurs and regularly speaks to businesses and community groups about challenges and opportunities.

‘I’m looking forward to being part of the ECCQ CLG, particularly to help inform the Central Queensland business community and engage them in this important work.’

Josh Ariens has a wealth of local and international experience in the areas of education and training, community development, program management and cross-sector partnering. In his current role at CQUniversity Josh fosters research partnerships with industry, supporting the strategic goals of the University by developing new business partnerships to increase research engagement and impact.

‘I value this opportunity to forge relationships between organisations that foster and embrace collaborative change to promote and lead proportional, integral human development in our region.’

Karen Abrahams is the Regional Director Youth Justice Services for Central Queensland. She has a background of working in child protection and has championed the opportunity for Youth Justice to undertake ground-breaking initiatives supporting Justice Reinvestment. Karen is a member of the Rockhampton Community Policing board and has recently been involved in developing a concept and framework collective impact approach within the Youth Justice Service.

‘By working together and alongside young people, families and our communities, we can provide a base where barriers can be removed to allow people to have choices.’

Josh Donovan has worked in various roles in the state government for 17 years, in roles including Residential Care Office, Direct Service Team Leader and Service Advisor. He is currently the Transition Officer – Disability out-posted consultant for Rockhampton Child Safety. He is also a Public Sector LGBTIQ Steering Committee member.

‘I believe we have a wealth of potential in the region, and that by working together, collectively, and investing in common goals we will be able to achieve whatever the community needs to reach its full potential.’

We acknowledge Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as the Traditional Owners and Custodians of this country and recognise their connection to land, wind, water and community. We pay our respect to them, their cultures, and to the Elders both past and present.