John Smithies, Director, (appointed December 2005)

JohnSmithiesJohn is an arts manager with a background of arts programming, specifically in cinema, new media arts, and screen education, and experience in policy development. He studied at the Tasmanian School of Art, the South Australian School of Art, Monash University and the Academy of Fine Art Karlsruhe, Germany. From 1992, John was Director of the State Film Centre of Victoria, leading it through its development to the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI). He was responsible for opening the new public facilities at Federation Square in Melbourne in October 2002. Since joining CDN, he has worked with the Board and a highly skilled team to support stronger planning within the cultural development activities of local government. Contact John

Amy Stevenson, Administration and Research Officer (appointed April 2015)

Amy is currently completing a Master of Cultural Heritage at Deakin University and holds a Diploma of Visuals Arts, a Bachelor of Arts (International Studies) and qualifications in Project Management all from RMIT University.  Amy believes culture plays a pivotal role in creating vibrant, inclusive and innovative communities and enjoys developing her knowledge and contributing to, this essential component of sustainable development. She is particularly interested in the role culture plays within post-conflict development. In 2014, she spent a year supporting the work of NGO Many Hands International in the remote community of Lospalos, Timor Leste.  She then worked in Phnom Penh, Cambodia with the Bophana Center, who collect, preserve and share film archives. In her role she supported events such as the Cambodian International Film Festival and the Acts of Memory Festival. Since 2012, Amy has co-managed the Matadalan Ba Malu Program at the Centre for Global Research, at RMIT. This program provides English language training and cross-cultural exchange opportunities for East Timorese women, working in the community development sector. She has also co-ordinated a number of community and school based art programs in Australia, engaged diverse groups, such as asylum seekers in detention and indigenous youth, in exploring themes such as climate change and Human Rights Law. Contact Amy

 Oana Sarghe, Intern from the University of Jyväskylä, Finland (joined CDN in 2016)

Oana is pursuing her Master’s Degree in Cultural Policy at the University of Jyväskylä, Finland. She decided to work with CDN in order to understand cultural impact assessment in-depth, in relation to policies and communities. Her current interests are cultural sustainability and possible ways of measuring it, intangible heritage preservation, indigenous people’s festivals and their impact on indigenous culture (specifically the Sami culture in Lapland).

CDN Contractors

CDN’s work is supported by a team of specialist contractors:

Kim Dunphy, Research Consultant (joined CDN in this role in 2016).

Kim DunphyKim’s research expertise includes arts evaluation, cultural indicators, cultural impact assessment, accessibility and the arts, community revitalization, expressive arts and dance movement therapy.  Kim’s publications are available here.




Julie Marlow, Policy and Research Consultant (joined CDN in 2016)

Julie has an extensive background in the screen industries as a producer, writer, arts bureaucrat and policy development and advocacy. She studied at St Andrew’s University. She was Director of Film Victoria from 1999-2002, and has since worked in senior policy consultancy and advocacy in Australia and overseas, for the Screen Producers Association of Australia, the Commonwealth Secretariat, the International Federation of Producers’ Associations, and state and federal government agencies.

Meredith Windust and Au Nguyen, FameGroup for accounting services
Kitka Hiltula, Kitka Web Design
Alan Reddick, Reddick Design
Barrett Housten, Jim’s Computer Services

CDN Staff and Contractors 2015

staff and contractors 2015
(from L to R):
Meredith Windust (The Fame Group), Lyndall Metzke (CDN Administrator), Leda Yazgin (CDN Research Assistant), John Smithies (CDN Director), Amy Stevenson (CDN Administration and Research Officer), Kitka Hiltula, (Kitka Design), Kim Dunphy (CDN Research Program Manager), Alan Reddick (Reddick Design). Barrett Housten not in photo.