South-east Marine Parks Advisory Committee
The South-east Marine Parks Advisory Committee promotes the involvement, engagement and collaboration of marine park users, stakeholders and the community in the management of the 14 marine parks in the region.
The Committee brings together a wealth of knowledge and expertise across a range of topics relevant to marine park management, including tourism, fishing, sea country, marine transport, science, conservation, governance, communications and engagement.
Committee members will work with Parks Australia staff to shape the management of Australian Marine Parks, providing advice on marine issues at a regional level and strengthening our understanding of park user interests and issues.
This collaborative approach to management is critical to achieving our vision of healthy, resilient and well-managed marine parks that deliver benefits for all Australians.
There will be a minimum of two meetings per year. The next meeting is likely to occur in late 2019.
Committee Members are appointed for a two year term. The current members are:
Hilary Schofield (Chair)
Hilary is the Director of the Marine Parks Management South Section in the Marine Parks Branch of Park Australia. She oversees management of the Temperate East and South-east Marine Parks Networks which include 22 Australian Marine Parks that lie in Commonwealth waters off New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania.
Hilary has a science and energy background and has been with the Federal Government’s environment portfolio for 15 years. During this time, she has held a range of senior positions and been involved with marine park management, protected area planning and tourism, climate change and energy policy.
Hilary previously worked in State Government and as an energy consultant.
Neville is a marine biologist with a research focus on marine protected areas design and monitoring, and sustainable use of temperate coastal ecosystems.
Neville established a marine habitat monitoring program in Tasmania that underpinned the development of State marine parks and has played a central role in developing marine park research and monitoring programs in all temperate Australian states. These long-term datasets contribute to our understanding of patterns of biodiversity, the nature of long-term and short-term natural variability, and the extent that human activities impact coastal species and ecological processes.
Neville is currently Associate Professor at the University of Tasmania where he drives collaborative research on temperate reef systems across Australia and he also leads the University’s engagement with the National Environmental Research Program Marine Biodiversity Hub.
Neville will bring a wealth of scientific expertise to the advisory committee and extensive networks with Australian and international researchers.
Michael has a background in aquaculture and seafood science and more than 15 years’ professional experience in fisheries and natural resource management.
He is currently the Director of the Australian Recreational Fishing Foundation (ARFF) and previously worked with the Department of Fisheries in Western Australia.
Through these roles he has developed strong community engagement and communication skills that will be invaluable for the advisory committee. He will also bring an important working knowledge of recreational fishing issues and opportunities across the South-east Marine Region.
Michael’s love of fishing started at an early age and he continues to enjoy getting out on Victoria’s amazing waters.
Johnathon is the Executive Director of Seafood Industry Victoria. In his role, he advocates for the Victorian seafood industry across a wide range of stakeholders including licence holders, government organisations and the private sector.
Previously, Johnathon worked in international fisheries with Federal Government’s Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.
Johnathon brings extensive board and committee experience and has provided advice on a range of commercial fishing issues through for a such as the Rock Lobster Resource Assessment Group, the Victorian Primary Skills Industry Advisory Group and the Australian Maritime Safety Authority’s Fishing Industry Advisory Committee.
Hank is an Elder, keeper and protector of culture in his local community in northern Tasmania. He is an active member of the Indigenous community, taking a lead role in promoting Aboriginal culture through his work as an educator and traditional artist.
Hank brings a wealth of board and committee experience and is adept at proving advice to government at local, State and Federal levels on wide range of Indigenous and land management issues. He currently sits on the Tasmanian National Parks & Wildlife Advisory Council, providing management advice on Tasmanian World Heritage Areas & National Parks.
Hank is well connected with land managers and other stakeholders across the State and works hard to promote the improved management of Aboriginal heritage values.
Shannon has more than six years’ experience in environmental management and advocacy.
In 2018, Shannon joined Victoria’s peak non-government conservation organisation, the Victorian National Parks Association, to protect the state’s unique marine and coastal environments. In this role, her primary responsibilities include advocating for the protection of our seas and shores by engaging in government processes including policy, management, and planning, in addition to empowering the community to take action.
Previously, Shannon worked for Parks Victoria undertaking marine planning, monitoring and education, and for the Australian Marine Conservation Society to protect the Great Barrier Reef. Shannon is a keen scuba diver and passionate about shark conservation and promoting sustainable seafood choices.
Tony is an internationally recognised oceanographer with research interests in fisheries, ocean observation systems, deep-sea ecology, and biological oceanography.
He previously led the deep-water ecology program at the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation and was instrumental in securing the initial protection of Tasmania’s iconic seamounts, now within the South-east Marine Parks Network. Latterly, he directed the Scripps Institution of Oceanography California Cooperative Oceanic Fisheries Investigations, the world’s oldest multidisciplinary ocean observation program.
Tony’s research focused on the impacts of climate on the fish communities of the California Current. He is author of the prize-winning book, The Silent Deep, and was awarded the Don McAllister Medal for Marine Conservation.
He will bring invaluable committee experience, having previously participated in fora such as the Integrated Ocean Observing System Advisory Committee and the Deep Ocean Stewardship Initiative Steering Committee.
Marg is passionate about the marine environment and has contributed to coastal and marine research, planning, management and environmental education in Victoria for over 30 years.
Marg is a skilled marine science communicator and currently runs her own environmental interpretation and education business. She previously worked as a ranger with Parks Victoria and has authored a range of marine communications products that help visitors interact with local habitats and marine protected areas in a more meaningful way.
She regularly shares her marine knowledge through school education and community programs, and previously at Deakin University as a lecturer. In her spare time, she is a paediatric nurse.
John is a retired lobster fisherman with over 35 years’ experience based in Hobart. He is currently the Chief Executive Officer for the Tasmanian Rock Lobster Fishermen’s Association, a not-for-profit organisation formed in 1985 to represent the interests of rock lobster fishers in Tasmania.
John routinely provides advice to government, liaises with the private sector and supports research and development activities. John is also Deputy Chair of Southern Rock Lobster Ltd, the peak body representing the three rock lobster catching states of SA, Vic and Tas.
John is an entitlement holder in the Tasmanian Rock lobster fishery.
Emma is a fisheries scientist with experience across tropical, temperate and Antarctic ecosystems. She is currently a Project Manager with the Tasmanian Seafood Industry Council, the peak body representing the interests of wild capture fishers, marine farmers and seafood processors in Tasmania.
Emma liaises extensively with the commercial fishing sector operating within the South-East Marine Region and will contribute a broad understanding of regional and industry specific issues to the advisory committee. Previously, Emma worked in the Fisheries Management Team at the Australian Antarctic Division where she assisted in developing stock assessments for Southern Ocean species like Patagonian toothfish.
In her current role, Emma works with a diverse range of stakeholders within government and private sectors, and is an advocate for a healthy and sustainable seafood industry.
Learn more about what’s being discussed at committee meetings and related content.
After every meeting, we’ll summarise discussion topics and important points in a meeting communique.
Meeting three: Thursday 28 May 2020
Meeting two: Thursday 31 October 2019
Meeting one: Thursday 16 May 2019
The inaugural meeting of the South-east Marine Parks Advisory Committee (SEMPAC) marked the beginning of a two year term for the 10 newly appointed members. Individual members were selected from a large number of applicants who responded to a public expression of interest process open to all Australians last year.
Get in touch
Would you like to know more about the South-east Marine Parks Advisory Committee? Are you interested in presenting at a meeting, providing information about a relevant issue, event or project, or contacting a member?
For all these inquiries and more, please email the Committee Secretariat.
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