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Presenters 2023

Dr Danielle Clode

Flinders University

Associate Professor Danielle Clode is a psychologist, biologist and author of a major review of psychological preparedness and A Future in Flames on Australia’s bushfire history. She has lived in fire-prone areas of South Australia and Victoria, and defended her home in the Cherry Gardens fire.

Malcolm Hackett OAM

Valley Community Financial Services

Chair of the Board that operates five local Bendigo Bank Community Bank Branches. Following the 2009 Black Saturday Bushfires Malcolm was Chair of the Strathewen Community Renewal Association. He has personal knowledge of property loss and the painful insurance, planning and rebuilding journey.

Craig Lapsley

Chief Executive Innovation Pro

One of the world’s most experienced operational and strategic fire and public safety leaders. Craig champions collaboration, community-centred outcomes and strategic leadership with a focus on key global future drivers including climate change and resilience building.

Dr Justin Leonard


Justin Leonard has dedicated his 26-year research career to the understanding of how bushfire risk to life and infrastructure can be managed. This research combines learnings from bushfire exposure experiments with post bushfire survey investigations and computer modelling of bushfire interactions with buildings.

Jamie Mackenzie AFSM

Director/Founder, Red Flag - Real Time Leadership Solutions

Jamie helps communities, businesses, and response agencies to prepare, survive and thrive during adversity. He developed the Survive and Thrive program for grade 5+ students to bring about generational change and developing resilience in high bushfire risk communities.

Steve Pascoe

Resident, Strathewen Victoria

Steve worked in community centred bushfire safety education for many years. On Black Saturday 2009 the Pascoe family’s plan was to stay with their property. Despite their house burning down they survived well and have rebuilt.

Parvathi Subramaniam

The University of Sydney

Parvathi coordinates the Person-Centred Emergency Preparedness (P-CEP) Online Certificate Program at the Centre for Disability Research and Policy. She is involved in the design, implementation and evaluation of P-CEP education for service providers and people with disabilities.

Dr Mel Taylor

Macquarie University

Mel is Associate Professor at Macquarie University and a partner in Enduring Advantage Consulting. Her research focuses on human behaviour and decision-making in the context of risk. She specialises in animal emergency management.

Dr Kevin Tolhurst AM

The University of Melbourne

In 1984 Kevin embarked on a career in bushfire science covering fire ecology, fire weather and fire behaviour. Kevin has applied his knowledge and interest to teaching, research, land management and community engagement. He has provided expert advice to various inquiries and fire and land management agencies.

Our tribute to Kevin

Dr Rachel Westcott

South Australian Veterinary Emergency Management Inc (SAVEM)

Rachel is a veterinarian with a PhD in Public Health Emergency Management, with an emphasis on natural hazard preparedness. She leads SAVEM and is a Director of Engine Room Solutions Pty Ltd.

Sponsored by
Hurstbridge & Eltham Community Bank Branches
Proudly sponsored by
Hurstbridge & Eltham Community Bank Branches
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