Our Board

Jillian Edwards, Chair

Director, Beyond Business as Usual

Jillian is a specialist advisor in systemic disaster risk, resilience, and strategy. With over 30 years’ experience in emergency and disaster management, she has led multiple change management and capability building programs in Australia and the Pacific region, resulting in fundamental shifts in thinking, policy, and resilience outcomes.

As Founder and Director of Beyond Business as Usual, Jillian uses her deep knowledge and experience to support institutions, organisations and individuals redefine and develop business models and build the resilience and capability to meet the challenges of a rapidly changing risk context.

Andrew Coghlan

National Manager Emergency Services, Australian Red Cross

Andrew has been involved in the emergency management sector, with a strong focus on recovery, for more than 20 years. He was the National Recovery Consultant at EMA’s Australian Emergency Management Institute at Mt. Macedon where he led the development and delivery of the Institute’s recovery curriculum and provided support to state government recovery coordinators in the aftermath of various disasters, including the Port Arthur shootings, Indian Ocean Tsunami, Canberra Bushfires and Bali Bombings.  

Following that, he moved to Australian Red Cross to broaden their involvement in all aspects of the emergency management continuum including development of Red Cross’s work in building individual and community resilience, as well as supporting communities through long-term recovery. Key activities included the growth of Red Cross recovery programs in the aftermath of the 2009 Victorian Bushfires, development of the RediPlan preparedness program and establishment of a three year, multi-state recovery program in the aftermath of the 2019/20 bushfires.

Andrew has been involved in a range of policy development, including contributing to the National Recovery Principles and National Disaster Risk Reduction Framework and was involved with establishing the Australian Business Roundtable for Disaster Resilience and Safer Communities and the Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience. He is currently a Board member of Volunteering Victoria and has previously been on the Boards of Volunteering Australia and Asia-Australia Mental Health.

Silvano Giordano

Co-Director Wilurarra Creative

Silvano Giordano has been Director of Wilurarra Creative for over 10 years, living and working in Mirlirrtjarra (Warburton Community) in the very remote Ngaanyatjarra Lands of Western Australia. Silvano has a background in commercial printing, contemporary and community arts and sound engineering. With the belief that arts, access to technologies and appropriate self-directed learning opportunities are fundamental to self-determination, Silvano works alongside Ngaanyatjarra people to create exciting and relevant creative opportunities.

Since 2004, Wilurarra Creative has facilitated a diverse range of community driven activities and creative programs, co-created with 16-30 year old Ngaanyatjarra people. Project areas include music (recording, practice and performance), concerts, tours, community events, fashion, social change hairdressing salon, screen printing, design, cultural maintenance, metal work, photography, digital inclusion, videos, publications – including the Alanya project. Foundational to Wilurarra’s success is working ‘Malparara-way’ – Ngaanyatjarra and non-Ngaanyatjarra colleagues working alongside each other.

Scott Leonard

Treasurer

Scott brings 24 years’ experience as an Army Officer in the Australian Defence Force with highly developed problem-solving, project management, and logistics experience.

Career highlights include developing protocols to ensure deploying forces were appropriately trained and equipped, operational deployments to East Timor and Iraq and coordinating defence support to the Sydney Olympic Games and Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

Dr Jen Rae

Artist-Researcher

Dr Jen Rae is an award-winning artist-researcher of Canadian Métis descent living and creating on Djaara Country in Central Victoria. Her research-creation expertise is in the discursive field of contemporary environmental art and arts-based environmental communication. It is centered around cultural responses to climate change/emergency, specifically the role of artists. Her work is engaged in discourses around food justice, disaster resilience and speculative futures predominantly articulated through transdisciplinary collaborative methodologies and community alliances.

Jen creates and contributes to experimental multi-platform collaborative projects, including being a core artist of Arts House’s multi-year REFUGE project (2016-2021) – where artists, emergency service providers and communities work together to rehearse climate-related emergencies and explore the impact of creativity in disaster preparedness. She is a co-founder of the Centre For Reworlding (C∞R), a collective of diverse Indigenous, people of colour, settler, LGBTIQA2S+ thinkers and doers working at the intersections of art, climate futures and disaster resilience. Through their Creative Resilience Lab, events, workshops and projects the C∞R aims to bolster inclusive collaboration and creative leadership in climate emergency response and action.

During her PhD, she worked for the Australian Collaboration synthesising International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports and later the Climate Action Network, further noting the absence of creatives in the fields of climate change communication and advocacy. She is also Director of Fair Share Fare and was a Co-founder of Fawkner Commons – creative and research-informed projects that centre food justice, land remediation and social cohesion in the climate emergency context. Jen has lectured at the post-graduate level in socially-engaged art and performance at the University of Melbourne and Deakin University.

Rebecca Vandyk

Consultant / Practitioner, Arts and Health Gippsland

Rebecca is an experienced arts and health professional with a rich history working in community-engaged projects, skilled in group facilitation and social connection-building.

She is a practicing community artist whose recent work includes a project funded by Vic Health’s ‘Everyday Creativity’ grants in the Baw Baw region of Gippsland, Victoria, where she managed ten facilitating artists to embed the creative arts within the community as a means for improving social connectivity and mental health.

Rebecca’s academic approach informs both her community work and her studio practice – she holds degrees in Art (Ceramics) and Education, Honours in Psychological Science, and a Masters in Public Health from the University of Melbourne. Rebecca’s arts practice follows themes of feminist mothering and dealing with chronic illness. She was recently published in Hecate, as a result of her tour of the Giant Knitted Placenta, a community art project completed during 2017-2019. During the Covid-19 lockdown she created a series of online arts for health sessions for the local community.

 

Our Team

Scotia Monkivitch

Executive Officer

Scotia is Executive Officer of the Creative Recovery Network, advocating and supporting the role of culture and the arts in disaster preparedness, response and recovery.

Scotia has a broad range of professional experiences in the community arts and cultural development sector, specialising in training, mentoring, strategic planning, project management, research and facilitation of community cultural development programs and strategies.

Scotia has a performance background spanning 25 years in theatre, devised performance, and coordination of projects and theatrical productions, installation performance, film, live-art and online exchanges. She established the Australian chapter of the Magdalena International Project which gives voice and recognition to women in theatre.

Jill Robson

Producer

Jill Robson is Creative Recovery Network’s project manager and producer of the Creative Responders podcast. She is a communications specialist with more than 15 years experience in the film and cultural sectors as a publicist, marketing executive and communications director. 

She was previously Head of Communications for the Doha Film Institute in Qatar; Director of Marketing and Communications for Brisbane-based cultural initiative the Asia Pacific Screen Awards; and regional publicist and event manager for Dendy Films and Dendy Cinemas in Queensland.

Our Members

The Creative Recovery Network

Our network is founded on a spirit of cooperation, grounded in the knowledge that disaster resilience is a collective responsibility across all sectors. We have hundreds of members across Australia working to support their communities in challenging times and collaborating with us on projects and advocacy. Our members represent a broad cross-section of the community and include artists, arts workers, community development practitioners as well as people who specialise in health, education, community engagement and all levels of government. If you would like to join us, find out more.