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 Manager (appointed April 2015)

Amy (BAInS) is community development practitioner with a particular interest in cultural development and the arts. Since 2009, she has worked in community and international development throughout Australia and South-East Asia, with long term residencies in Timor-Leste and Cambodia. Her interests include cultural projects in development, evidence-based community planning and evaluation and arts participation as a change mechanism. She is particularly interested in the role culture plays in post-conflict development and peacebuilding.  Amy is currently an Associate Member of the Centre for Global Research, RMIT University and Co-Manager of the international scholarship program for East-Timorese women, Matadalan Ba Malu. She is currently the Executive Officer of Many Hands International, an NGO working in remote indigenous communities in Timor-Leste. At CDN Amy manages the daily operations of the organisation and assists the Executive Officer in preparing and delivering key corporate governance and industry meetings and sector projects. Contact Amy

 Holly Schauble, Research Officer (joined CDN March 2017)

Holly Schauble is an Australian cultural anthropologist and community development practitioner with experience working in Australia and internationally. She is currently the Director of Many Hands International, an NGO working in remote indigenous communities in Timor-Leste. She has held a variety of community development, project and policy positions with a range of public service organisations in Victoria, including with the Country Fire Authority, Department of Planning and Community Development and Department of Natural Resources and Environment.  Holly has also worked as an anthropologist on Aboriginal sacred site protection with the Aboriginal Areas Protection Authority in the Northern Territory, as a Community Cultural Development Coordinator for the State Secretariat for Arts and Culture (Government of Timor-Leste), as a Research Officer with the United Nations Development Program and Lao PDR Department for International Cooperation, and as a Gender and Participation/Community Participation advisor for Land Equity International and the Lao PDR Department of Lands. Working with our consultants, Holly’s role at CDN is to develop and progress key research and apply critical thinking to the resources we offer to our sector.  Contact Holly

Raji Uppal, Casual Research Assistant (appointed February 2018)

Raji is currently completing a Master of Arts Management at RMIT university, where she has developed a strong interest in cultural evaluation. This year, she has been working at CDN developing her skills in planning and evaluation. She has recently used CDN’s outcome schema to complete an evaluation of a community music festival for a large metropolitan council. She is currently working on a nationwide study of council and cultural plans.

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 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.



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)

CDN Staff and Contractors 2016










Back row: Au Nguyen (The Fame Group), Meredith Windust (FameGroup), Lauren Brooker (CDN intern 2016), Alan Reddick (Reddick Design), Front row: Kim Dunphy (CDN consultant), Oana Sarghe (CDN Intern 2016), Kitka Hiltula (Kitka Design), Amy Stevenson (CDN Administration and Research Officer),John Smithies (CDN Director). Julie Marlow and Barrett Housten not in photo.