Professor Kevin F. Kenneally AM - President
Kevin is a science graduate of the University of Western Australia (UWA) and was a Principal Research Scientist with the Department of Environment and Conservation. His botanical research has focussed on the Kimberley and Top End of Australia documenting the wildlife of the region. He is currently an Adjunct Professor with the Centre for Regional Development at The University of Western Australia. Kevin is also an Honorary Research Associate with the Western Australian Herbarium, Department of Parks and Wildlife and an Honorary Research Associate of the Terrestrial Zoology Department, Western Australian Museum.
Kevin has over 40 years of collaboration with botanical gardens and research institutions internationally and in Australia. He has been a visiting fellow and lecturer at major botanical institutions in Europe, America and Asia. For 17 years Kevin directed LANDSCOPE Expeditions, a research oriented program that involved paying members of the community participating with scientists in hands-on research projects in remote areas of Western Australia.
Kevin has published numerous books on the botany and biology of Western Australia and over 200 research papers. He is a past President of the WA Naturalist’ Club, and the Kimberley Society. He has been the president of the WA Gould League, the organisation that manages the Herdsman Lake Wildlife Centre, for over 30 years. Kevin has been the recipient of a Churchill Fellowship (1979); the Australian Natural History Medallion (1984); the CSIRO Medal for Research Achievement (1996); DRV International Environmental Award (2003) and the Pride of Australia Medal (2009). In 2005 he was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for his services to the community through a range of organisations that promote environmental education and for advancing botanical knowledge.
Kevin’s interest is in collaborative projects that build long-term relationships that benefit communities.
Ian Hancock - Vice President
Ian’s career with the WA Department of Education spanned 45 years (28 years in country towns). Ian was a Principal, Deputy Principal, Teacher, Science Advisory Teacher and District Science Specialist. Ian gained a Teachers’ Certificate, Teachers’ Higher Certificate, Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Education.
Ian was a member of the Junior Naturalists’ Club as well as the Senior Naturalists’ for many years and a Council Member of the WA Gould League for over 40 years, at the same time being the Deputy President for an extended period. Ian was a Councillor with the Shire of Northam for six and a half years including two years as the Deputy President.
Ian has served as a member of Charity Groups including YMCA (25 years) and Lions Clubs of Australia (14 years). Ian is currently also a volunteer for the WA Cancer Council.
Rod Mifflin - Herdsman Lake Wildlife Centre Centre Manager
Rod commenced teaching in 1979 and has taught at eight different primary schools, in metropolitan and country areas. After completing additional degrees in Education and Applied Science, he was seconded to an Education Officer’s position at Perth Zoo and Kings Park Education Centres. He was subsequently appointed to a Camp School Director’s role in Kalgoorlie and later Geraldton (Bluff Point Camp Schools), where he designed and implemented educational programs for community and school camps. His current role is as the Centre Manager at WA Gould League’s Herdsman Lake Wildlife Centre, where he loves being able to share his knowledge, understanding and passion for nature, whilst working with school students and teachers, and by implementing innovative and stimulating learning experiences within a natural setting.
Jenny Newhill - Herdsman Lake Wildlife Centre Administrator
Jenny sarted working for the Gould League whilst it was being run from Perth Zoo, moved to the Herdsman Lake Wildlife Centre, when WAGL set up the new education centre. Here she filled the role of Administrator during the day, where she manages the bookings and handle the accounts. She am also the secretary/treasurer for the Gould League Council, which is the management group of the Gould League. Jenny loves being in a natural environment, like Herdsman Lake, and take great delight in watching the students as they discover the secrets of the natural world.
Mandy and Mike Bamford
Mike and Mandy Bamford have been lucky enough to turn their childhood obsession with nature into a shared career as zoologists running a small business specialising in wildlife research and science communication. They both grew up in Perth and in addition to their research work, Mike and Mandy write articles on science and the environment (including The Wild Side in the West Australian 1997-2003), prepare interpretative material for reserves and parks, develop education packages, run workshops and even perform on stage to tell an environmental story. Mike is also a recognised scientific illustrator. Mike and Mandy are regulars on ABC local radio and are active in community groups. Mike is current chair of BirdLife Western Australia and Mandy is current president of the Western Australian Naturalists’ Club and chair of the Herdsman Lake Regional Park Community Advisory Committee.
Mark Cowan had a lifelong interest in wildlife and spent almost 30 years as a professional biologist. He has worked for the Environmental Protection Authority, the Western Australian Museum and is now at Department of Parks and Wildlife as an ecologist. Mark’s roles have included Regional Ecologist in Kalgoorlie, Principal Rangeland Ecologist for Western Australia and currently as Senior Research Scientist in the Biogeography Program. He participated and/or coordinated biological survey of vertebrates across much of Western Australia and has been a key member of biodiversity surveys in Sri Lanka, Singapore and the Peruvian amazon. Much of his current work has focused on the use of technology for monitoring and analysis of biodiversity values, such as the utilisation and spacing of remote cameras. In an urban ecological context he continues to run a long term vertebrate monitoring program in the Trigg Bushland area of western Perth.
Along with an extensive background in field ecology, he maintains a strong interest in biological data management, multivariate statistics and geographic information systems and is a Research Associate at the Western Australian Museum.
He has spent a considerable amount of time involved in community education focused programs, ranging from working with schools through to remote Aboriginal communities, and sees this as an important aspect of environmental conservation work and providing expertise to the broader public and future generations.
Alma de Rebiera OAM
Alma’s teaching career spanned 39 years with seven years as a Nature Advisory Teacher with the Education Department.
Alma attended 27 Bickley Gould League science camps for children interested in nature. She was presented a life-time membership of the Gould League for weekend camps at Point Peron. Alma received an OAM for her service to the Gould League and ornithology.
She has been the Chair of Eyre Bird Observatory (EBO) Management Committee since 2006 and has been involved with the EBO since 1980.
Gane is the owner West Australian Reptile Park. In 1953 he was selected to go to the WA Gould League camp as a student where fellow councillor, Kevn Griffiths, attended as a trainee school teacher. He continued to be a member of the Gould League as well as the WA Naturalist Club from a junior age. He was in the army from 1960 –1969. While serving in Vietnam in 67-68 he collected reptiles for the Australian Museum and in 1970 he took over from Harry Butler in organising reptile exhibits for wildlife shows. He became a Gould League Council Member in the late 1970s and his love of wildlife inspired him to open the West Australian Reptile Park in 1993.
Kevn’s interest in natural history began at a very young age and followed on throughout his life and was reflected in his art work and nature club activities and resulted in him being accepted for a role in the Nature Advisory Service, also part of the WA Gould League.
This Education Department body assisted primary school teachers with the study of natural science and also established Gould League clubs across the State where possible.
Kevn co-established the first branch of the WA Naturalist Club in the Darling Ranges in 1974. He has been a staunch member of the WA Gould League since his Nature Advisory days.
Ric How has had fifty years research experience as a biodiversity specialist with a focus on vertebrate ecology and biogeography and has worked extensively across Australia, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and, briefly, southern China. After gaining his PhD from the University of New England, he spent four years lecturing at La Trobe University in Melbourne, as a Research Fellow, before being appointed as a biogeographer and ecologist at the Western Australian Museum. His experience encompasses the design, conduct and analysis of biological and ecological survey programs in arid, temperate and tropical terrestrial ecosystems and he has also published extensively on mammalian and reptilian species populations and assemblages.
Over the last 30 years he has conducted detailed faunal surveys in remnant bushlands across the Swan Coastal Plain and Darling Plateau, documenting the rich diversity of the vertebrate fauna and its decline since European settlement as a result of habitat fragmentation, fire, competition with exotic species and changing climate. He is also an occasional lecturer at Murdoch University and now holds the position of Adjunct Professor at The University of Western Australia.
Garth is a field biologist who has worked for over 25 years across Western Australia. He has an interest in wetlands, frogs and mangrove and saltmarsh ecosystems, and is Principal Ecologist at Perth consulting firm Biota Environmental Sciences and a Research Associate of the Western Australian Museum. Garth is also involved in ecological and wildlife education at different levels of the education system, being an Adjunct Lecturer at the School of Animal Biology at the University of Western Australia, and is also participant in CSIRO’s Scientists in Schools programme.
Michi completed a degree in Botany and Zoology at the University of Western Australia, including Honours in Zoology. She had always intended to work in the zoological field but somehow found herself drawn towards the botanical side. She is currently one of the Directors of ‘Biota Environmental Sciences’, an environmental consultancy specialising in vegetation, flora and fauna surveys.
Michi has worked throughout WA but particularly in the Pilbara, and appreciates that her love of natural landscapes can be fulfilled through her work. She counts herself lucky to have grown up in the southern Perth Hills, where the local kids experienced the natural world independently and on a daily basis. She would like every child to have the opportunity to share the wonders at Lake Herdsman and beyond, so that they will share a commitment to protecting these assets for future generations.
Eric McCrum OAM
Eric is an environmentalist, photographer and radio presenter and was awarded the OAM and the Centenary Medal for his work in natural history.
Eric started his working life as a teacher 1954, being appointed to the railway settlement of Reid on the Nullarbor Plain. He also worked as a Patrol Officer in Papua New Guinea from 1969-1972, being stationed at Kokoda and Popondetta. He later taught at Wooroloo, Wembley, Parkerville and Koongamia Primary Schools before being seconded to the Perth Zoo and the Herdsman Lake Wildlife Centre.
Now he is enjoying life presenting talk on natural history and places to a variety of community groups.
Peter Sirr has a long term involvement in the not for profit sector at a senior level as CEO of Outcare (24 Years) and Communicare (5 Years). He has sat on many Boards including WACOSS (Western Australian Council of Social Service) of which he is a life member, CPCWA (Crime Prevention Council of Western Australia), CEWA (Community Employers Western Australia – founding member). He is currently doing consulting and project work in the not for profit sector. He has extensive experience in governance, organisational management, project management and strategic planning and so on. He has had a lifetime commitment to the environment and sustainability, having spent much of the last 25 years returning a de-timbered rural property into a more natural habitat the local for flora and fauna. Married to Mary and with a grown daughter Peter is a local resident nearby to the Herdsman Wildlife Centre.
Growing up, Claire spent her childhood exploring the beaches and wetlands of the northern suburbs of Perth where she discovered a passion for the natural world. She developed an obsession with birds at around 12 years of age that set the pathway for a future career in zoology. After completing post graduate studies in Ornithology, Claire joined the WA Museum in 2004. During her eight years with the Museum, Claire fostered a keen interest in reptiles, frogs and mammals while exploring the remote regional areas of our state. In 2013, Claire was appointed Zoologist with the Office of the Environmental Protection Authority and is now adding terrestrial invertebrates and subterranean fauna to her list of interests.
Claire completed her bird banding training with the Herdsman Lake Banding Group and co-ordinates bird banding projects on Rottnest Island. She is an Honours graduate from Murdoch University and a Research Associate with the WA Museum as well as a sessional lecturer on Australian birds at Edith Cowan University, Joondalup.