Project Team

The Sustaining our Towns project has a small team who all live in communities within the project region, and are passionate about local sustainability.

Project Manager

Tracey Rich Project Manager

Tracey Rich - Project Manager

Tracey Rich is the Project Manager for the Sustaining our Towns project. Originally from South Africa, Tracey seeks to work and live to the African philosophy of Ubuntu  or  ‘a person is a person through (other) persons’.  Through this belief in the interconnectedness of all people and things, Tracey seeks to bring people together to explore how individual actions impact both positively and negatively on the world, and how rediscovering a global sense of community is integral to creating a healthy, safe and sustainable world. Tracey has worked in the sustainability field for many years across a variety of sectors and has a Masters in Environmental Planning. In her spare time she likes to make mosaics and share her love of colour and design with others from her home studio in Broulee.

Administrative Support

Karen Mahony Administrative Support

Karen Mahony - Administrative Support

Karen Mahony provides part-time administrative support for the project from Queanbeyan City Council offices. Karen was born and raised in the Riverina and now lives in Queanbeyan. Karen’s background in administration and small business ownership has given her an appreciation of the satisfactions and challenges faced by small businesses.  Karen believes in a ‘grass roots’ approach to reducing our ecological footprints.  Karen has an interest in sourcing second hand items, from clothing and kitchenware through to building materials. Apart from the ecological benefits it is as much about finding treasures and unusual pieces, ever being mindful of over consumerism.  In an effort to reduce ‘food miles’, Karen also patronises local businesses as much as possible and buys locally grown produce and food.   Karen has walkable access to most of her local community facilities and services, another way of helping build a sustainable world.

Homes Program Officer

Pam Vipond - Homes

Pam Vipond is the Homes Program Officer and grew up in Canberra and has lived on the South Coast and the Monaro.  Pam spent the first 10 years of her working life in nursing and then went on to study environmental science. Working in the past 10 years in sustainable land use and management has taught her that most people care deeply for the environment but are limited by resources, whilst the drought has further exacerbated land owners’ ability to implement sustainable practices on their land.  Pam loves working with people and believes both as individuals and as collectives we can in fact make a difference to reduce our carbon footprint.  She is very excited to be part of a project that is grounded in working WITH individuals and communities, and tapping into the wealth of knowledge at a local level.  When not at work Pam spends time with one or all of the wonderful men in her life………her horse, her kelpie and her partner.

Business Program Officer

Mark Fleming - Business

Mark Fleming is the Business Program Officer of Sustaining Our Towns and has lived in South East NSW for the past 30 years having moved back to Australia from overseas. Mark owned his own small business in Batemans Bay and is acutely aware of the day-to-day problems of managing an enterprise. He is an accredited mediator with experience in dealing with a range of personal and business disputes and has served on many community organisations in a voluntary capacity over the years and has a deep interest in public affairs. Mark is currently studying at the University of Wollongong and intends to undertake further studies in the area of Alternative Dispute Resolution. Being committed to the principles of sustainability at home and at work, Mark lives comfortably in a passive solar-designed house that produces its own energy and water and converts all wastes into valuable compost.

Monitoring & Evaluation

Kerryn Hopkins - Monitoring & Evaluation

Kerryn Hopkins is the Monitoring & Evaluation Officer for Sustaining Our Towns. Kerryn’s interest in community-based sustainability initiatives stems from a commitment to sustainable living as a personal philosophy, and current doctoral research at the University of Wollongong focusing on the political and cultural dimensions of environmental issues. Living in a regional area with a young family motivates and inspires her to work toward building a society based on principles of ecological and social justice. The Sustaining Our Towns project represents an exciting opportunity to foster cultural change through collective action by involving people from across a diverse project region. Kerryn’s role includes monitoring and evaluating the processes and impacts of the project, to inform responsive and adaptive project design and management, as well as being involved with facilitating project support of sustainability actions at the community level.

Community Engagement

Marie Zuvich - Community Engagement

Marie Zuvich is the Community Engagement Officer of Sustaining Our Towns. After many years as a TAFE teacher in Canberra, Marie moved to the south coast in 2006 and began working in the environment sector. Before joining this team, her roles included leading botany excursions for school children at the Eurobodalla Botanic Gardens, writing regular newspaper articles for the Eurobodalla Council’s Environment team and holding public meetings to promote government rebates for sustainable living on behalf of the local council. Marie took up surfing at the age of 50 and is now a regular attendee at the monthly surf meet of the Broulee Women Boardriders.

Communications & Media

Bettina Richter -Communications

Bettina Richter is the Communications Officer for Sustaining Our Towns. Before coming to the initiative Bettina worked for over 8 years at ABC TV & ABC Radio National in Sydney, and has managed the public relations campaigns of festivals, events, businesses & concerts often specializing in the arts and in the environment. Bettina has a Master of Arts in Writing and BA in Communications & is also the Producer of AQUA – a film directed by Toni Houston which tells the plight of the Great Barrier Reef. In 2009 AQUA (Preview Edition) premiered at Parliament House and was the only Australian event to be included in the Official Cultural Program at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Denmark. Bettina now works and lives on the far south coast of NSW with her partner Mark and two children Ruby (6) and Imogen (4).

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