Board of Directors

Libby Gleeson AM (Chair)
Libby is author of forty titles for children and young adults. She is formerly Chair of the Australian Society of Authors, Chair of the Literature and History Committee of Arts NSW and a Director of the Copyright Agency. She is a Director of the Public Education Foundation.

Robyn Ewing AM
Robyn is Professor of Teacher Education and the Arts, Faculty of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney. A former primary teacher, Robyn is passionate about the Arts and education and the role quality arts experiences and processes can and should play in transforming pedagogy across the curriculum.She enjoys working collaboratively with classroom teachers interested in creative teaching and learning.

In the areas of English, literacy and the Arts, Robyn’s research and writing has particularly focused on using drama with authentic literary texts to develop students’ learning. Her current partnership with Sydney Theatre Company on School Drama, a teacher professional learning program that aims to ensure primary teachers have the expertise and confidence to embed drama with literature to enhance students’ English and literacy outcomes.

Other research interests include innovative teacher education, the experiences of early-career teachers and the role of mentoring; sustaining curriculum innovation; evaluation; and, the role of the Arts in educational research.

Robyn is Chair of the Academic Board of the Australian Film, Television and Radio School (AFTRS), an Honorary Associate with Sydney Theatre Company, Principal Fellow of the Australian Literacy Educators Association (ALEA) and Visiting Scholar with Barking Gecko Theatre. She is a former president of ALEA and the Primary English Teachers Association (PETAA) and vice president of Sydney Story Factory 2011-15.

Brett Perry (Treasurer)
Brett has 35 year experience in the banking industry. He joined Commonwealth Bank in 1990. Throughout his career, Brett has worked in various roles, including Institutional Banking, Project Finance, State Manager Business Banking Qld and National Manager Corporate Risk Management.

Susanne Gannon (Secretary)
Susanne is Associate Professor in the School of Education, Western Sydney University (WSU). She teaches preservice English teachers with a particular interest in the teaching of creative writing in schools. She has been on the National Executive of the Australian Association of Teachers of English, and Editor of their research journal English in Australia.

Ethan Bell
Ethan Bell is a Ngunnawal man from the Y ass Valley NSW. At 1 5 he from country to Campbelltown prior t o enlisting in the Aust ralian Defence Force. He works in communi ty services, supportin g youth within the Ca mpbelltown area and is studying Creative Writing, History and P olitics at WSU.

Philip Porter 
Philip grew up in Parramatta and went to school at Rosehill Primary and Arthur Phillip High School. He subsequently graduated from UNSW with a BA (Politics and Spanish)and MA (Australian Politics) and Sydney University MA (Creative Writing). He also has a Teach Cert. from WWTC. He has been variously a high school and University teacher, business person (establishing educational centres in Australia, Japan, China, Indonesia and Thailand), fisherman, builders labourer, showman and ESL teacher (to name a few) in various countries around the world. He is currently the Director of Philip Porter Consulting and Special Advisor to The President of Meiji University, Tokyo. Philip is a poet and runs regular community Poetry Nights on the Lower North Shore and is currently editing an Anthology of Poetry of these events with Luke Fischer and Kit Kelen. His particular interest is to see more public support for Public Schools and has set up many programs at Arthur Phillip High over the past 10 years. Currently, he organises a Writing Scholarship Program at the School through his final year School Alumni. Details of these projects may be seen on his TEDTalk; “Public School Alumni-A Sleeping Giant.”

Vivienne Skinner
Vivienne is principal of the urban strategy company, Metropolis, and for nearly two decades was an adviser and speechwriter to two NSW premiers and the deputy prime minister of Australia.

Vivienne has been a television newsreader and journalist and is director of Beyond Empathy, which uses the arts to improve the lives of severely disadvantaged young Australians. She is a member of The Big Issue Women’s Advisory Committee, and SAMAG, the Sydney Arts Management Advisory Committee. Former board appointments include the Centennial Parklands and Moore Park Trust, chair of the Centennial Parklands’ Community Consultative Committee, deputy Chair of the Adelaide Film Festival, the South Australian Film Corporation, and the physical theatre company, Legs on the Wall. Vivienne recently completed a masters degree in Urban Policy and Strategy at the University of NSW and has a bachelor of arts degree from the Australian National University.