Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth

Early Years Chapter committee

Barb Wellesley (Convenor)

Barbara has had extensive experience in government policy and practice in the early years; the co-founder and National Director of Good Beginnings Australia; a member of the inaugural Board of NIFTeY (National Investment for the Early Years) Australia. She was awarded Membership of the Order of Australia for her national and international work with children.

Judi Gray

Judi is currently working as coordinator of Partnerships and Service Development at VICSEG New Futures and Program Manager Early Years Integration in the City of Maribyrnong for co-health community health service. Judi’s main interests are health and educational disadvantage, culturally competent service models, place-based innovation, social inclusion, trust building in partnerships and translation of research into practice in the early years.

Gerry Mulhearn

Dr. Mulhearn lives in Adelaide and works at RIPPLE at Charles Sturt University and Flinders University as a teacher and researcher. She previously worked as a senior education administrator in the South Australian public sector where her responsibilities included early childhood curriculum, policy, quality improvement and state-wide program management.

Sue Packer

Sue has been a paediatrician since 1972. Since 1990 she has worked particularly with abused and neglected infants and children, as well as a wider group of infants and children who are particularly vulnerable because of the circumstances of their lives. She is on the board of a number of community organisations related to the wellbeing of children and their families.

Paul Pritchard

Paul is co-manager of the Training and Development Team with the Centre for Community Child Health (Murdoch Childrens Research Institute), Victoria. He is in the final stages of a PhD focusing on parent engagement through peer led interventions.

Marie Stuart

Marie is currently working for Goodstart Early Learning in the role of Queensland Social Inclusion Coordinator and has over 30 years’ experience working in early childhood services and child protection services in NSW and Queensland. Having an early childhood and psychology academic background, Marie is passionate about the development of inclusive, successful and meaningful early childhood and family support programmes.

Lesley Taylor

Lesley is currently the NT Manager of NAPCAN but will soon be taking on a more national role in the prevention of child abuse and neglect. Her interests revolve around supporting communities and organisations to be child focussed, child friendly and child safe.

Sandra Wong

Dr Wong is Senior Lecturer the School of Teacher Education, Charles Sturt University. Her research explores integrated early years services, collaborative practices and inter-professional working relationships in early childhood services and the history of early childhood education and care.

David Zarb

David has been the CEO of Playgroup WA since 2008. Coming from a long background working with children and families at risk in family support and child protection settings, he has increasingly focused his work on the early years due to the clear opportunities to prevent harm and optimise opportunity for children. He is passionate about the supporting and promoting the role of families and communities in nurturing children.

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