John Smithies, Executive Officer, (joined CDN December 2005)
John is an arts manager with a background of arts programming, research and 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 transformation to the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) at Federation Square, Melbourne. Since joining CDN in 2005, he has worked with the Board and a highly skilled team to support stronger planning and evaluation of cultural development activities of local government and its integration with regional and national public cultural policy. CDN’s planning and evaluation frameworks are underpinned by five measurable cultural outcomes and John has presented these nationally and internationally through conferences and workshops since they were announced in 2016. Contact John
Amy Stevenson, Research and Administration Officer (joined CDN April 2015)
Amy is a practitioner and researcher whose interests and experience includes cultural projects in development/post-conflict development, evidence-based policy and practice, evaluation and arts participation as a change mechanism. She is currently completing a Masters of Evaluation at the University of Melbourne and has more than nine years experience working in community and international development throughout Australia, Timor-Leste and Cambodia. Amy joined CDN in 2015 where she manages the daily operations of the organisation, contributes to research and assists the Executive Officer with corporate governance, industry meetings and projects.Amy is also the Executive Officer of Many Hands International, an NGO working in remote indigenous communities in Timor-Leste, the Co-Manager of the international scholarship program for East-Timorese women, Matadalan Ba Malu, and an Associate Member of the Centre for Global Research, RMIT University. Contact Amy
Raji Uppal, Research Officer (joined CDN February 2018)
Raji has recently completed a Master of Arts Management at RMIT University, where she specialised in cultural planning and evaluation. She is recently worked on a research project focusing on local government planning practices, the results of which were presented at this year’s ICCPR conference in Estonia. Recently she has been working on a book chapter exploring governance and the potential impacts of CDN’s outcomes schema on governance practices. She is also assisting local councils to develop their planning and evaluation procedures.
Vanessa Di Grazia, Administrative Assistant (joined CDN August 2018)
Vanessa is a recent RMIT University graduate from the Bachelor of Arts (International Studies). Her interests and expertise are based in migration and refugee studies, intercultural communication and multicultural studies. Vanessa is a research assistant with Good People Act Now, a gender equality advocacy organisation concerning culturally diverse youth. She has previously worked in the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre’s refugee legal clinic providing administrative and intercultural communication support and at Banksia Community Gardens tutoring newly arrived refugee children. Vanessa originally joined CDN through an internship in which she conducted research concerning valuable program evaluation methods when concerning culturally and linguistically diverse communities. She was later employed by CDN to provide administrative support to the team and assist with the daily operations of the organisations.
Olga Yakubenko, Intern, University of Melbourne (Feb-March 2019)
Olga’s background is in economics and finance. She is currently completing a Master degree in Arts and Cultural Management at the University of Melbourne and would like to apply her corporate practice experience within the creative industries, particularly focusing on economic evaluation and impact.
Throughout February and March Olga will work with CDN where she will undertake a research project investigating the key challenges and possibilities for measuring program efficiency of cultural activities. From this research she will aim to propose a method for measuring program efficiency within the online Whitebox Outcomes Planning Platform currently being developed by CDN.
CDN Contractors and Consultants
CDN’s work is supported by a team of specialist contractors:
Kim Dunphy, Research Consultant (joined CDN in this role in 2016).
Kim’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 Marlow has spent her entire career in senior executive management in the creative industries. She currently offers an advisory, consultancy, writing and editing service for local governments developing and delivering cultural development plans. Working closely with the Cultural Development Network, using its planning framework and principles and a set of unique measurable outcomes for evaluation, Julie has worked with a growing number of councils, most recently the City of Casey, Golden Plains Shire and the City of Darebin, with more coming on-stream in this fast-developing area in local government planning. Julie’s work is intended to contribute to better practice in cultural development planning, and to assist council staff to achieve better outcomes for their community. Using the methodologies developed at CDN, Julie guides council staff through every step of the planning process, and also assists with subsequent evaluation of the plan and the application of the measurable outcomes.
Tammy Currie and Au Nguyen, FameGroup for accounting services
Kitka Hiltula, Kitka Web Design
Alan Reddick, Reddick Design
Barrett Housten, Jim’s Computer Services (for IT support) Judd Zekas, Yarra Valley Hosting, (for IT projects)
Back row: John Smithies (CDN Executive Officer), Tammy Currie (FameGroup), Meredith Windust (FameGroup), Judd Zekas (Yarra Valley Hosting), Holly Schauble (CDN Research Officer). Front row: Au Nguyen (The Fame Group), Amy Stevenson (CDN Research and Administration Officer),Raji Uppal (CDN Research Assistant), Kitka Hiltula (Kitka Kitka Web Designs), Alan Reddick (Reddick Design).
Barrett Housten (Jims Computer Services), Kim Dunphy (Research Consultant), and Julie Marlow (Research Consultant) not in photo.