ACSA is governed by a member-elected Management Committee comprising of a Chair, Vice-Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, at least two General Members and a representative of the Host Organisation. Committee members are elected at ACSA’s Annual General Meeting and terms of office are for two years. ACSA is supported by a part-time National Coordinator and a Social Media Moderator.
Our Patron is Dr Geoff Garrett AO, former Chief Scientist of Queensland (2011-2016). Please see below for more info on Geoff.
If you are interested in joining the Management Committee, make sure you join ACSA as a Member and stay tuned for calls for nominations via our Newsletter.
Erin is a Global Relationship Advisor working for CSIRO in helping to build and evaluate their international partnerships and collaborations. Formerly, Erin worked for the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) where she worked on science communication, priority knowledge acquisition, research partnerships and citizen science. Erin helped deliver OEH's Citizen Science Strategy and Position Statement
and worked to develop and implement the broader program. Erin has been on the ACSA Management Committee since July 2015, first as Secretary and then Chair, and works with the management committee to deliver on ACSA's Strategic Plan
. Before delving into the citizen science space, Erin worked in climate change adaptation and has a PhD in terrestrial ecology.
Key Focus Areas: Funding body reporting and liaison; MoU relationships, Overseeing the Strategic Plan milestones and its evaluation, ACSA National Coordinator supervision.
Stephanie von Gavel
Vice Chair (Canberra)
Stephanie von Gavel is the Business Development Manager for CSIRO Land & Water, and previously the Atlas of Living Australia
. She has over 20 years experience in technology transfer, business development and strategy development in areas of agribusiness, inclusive innovation, biodiversity, information platforms and Indigenous related research. She has a strong commitment to citizen science, having contributed to the development of ACSA as an organization, and CSIRO and ALA’s own initiatives in this space, and has even participated in BioBlitz or two. Stephanie believes in the importance of citizen science as a mechanism for engaging with communities and individuals to drive a better understanding of science and science literacy especially if Australia is going to have constructive conversation about our environment and the STEM skills of our children (and adults).
Key Focus Areas: Strategy and Governance; ACSA Chapter Development.
Treasurer (Portland, Victoria)
Rosemary has an extremely varied work/life balance. From volunteering with the local Neighborhood house to writing children's books and poetry, to open water scuba diving, and being secretary of the Portland Coastal Cliffs group, she is a busy woman who doesn't know the meaning of the word "no". Rosemary’s career began in law, her own business annotating for Judges, Queen’s Counsel, Barristers, Lawyers Libraries and Monash Law Library for their loose leaf filing. She then moved into a part-time role with the EPA Library whilst studying for her Diploma in Library Information and Technology at Swinburne University, where she assisted RMIT students, EPA Scientists and various organizations with researching articles. A change of career saw her move to the Mornington Peninsula, followed by a stint in remote cattle and horse stations across Queensland, Western Australia, New South Wales and Northern Territory where she taught primary school students via School of the Air, specialising in science and the environment. Along with advocating for citizen science as a member of ACSA, Rosemary is hoping to help school children participate with the local environmental community groups, and that STEM opportunities will become available to them including Drone applications for digital mapping. She also hopes to do a bit of cit-sci herself, recording shoreline shells, mapping the plants of the Portland coastal cliffs and just a bit of snorkeling (although she’s been told her 3mm wetsuit isn’t thick enough for the bays of Portland South West Victoria).
Key Focus Areas: Financial Management. Networking. Grants. Funding. Membership. STEM.
In 2011 Michelle's young son presented her with a spider. A redback spider. After convincing her son not to pick up spiders but to take pictures of them instead Michelle soon found she had over 7000 photos of all sorts of creatures and no idea what any of them were called. Thus a citizen scientist is made. In May 2014 Michelle was invited by Earthwatch to attend the Australian Citizen Science Associations Inaugral Workshop in Brisbane. She found herself co-chair of the Communications Working Group. Michelle and Jessie Oliver co-developed ACSA social media (Twitter, Facebook, & LinkedIn). Since then Michelle, with her orange coloured ipad clutched firmly in one hand, has been an active social media moderator, poster and tweeter for the ACSA social media platforms. Having worked in analytical chemistry for over a decade Michelle finds herself in an interesting place - a scientist as well as a citizen scientist, with a passion for science communication.
Key Focus Areas: Using social media for citizen science; STEM in schools
General Member (Adelaide)
Dr Cobi Calyx is a Postdoctoral Fellow with the Centre for Social Impact in collaboration with UNSW Science, where she's developing curriculum about leading science for impact. Cobi has worked for the United Nations in Geneva researching and developing citizen science for disaster responses and has been involved internationally in OpenStreetMap. She is currently one of the most active iNaturalist contributors in South Australia. Cobi was one of the first people working on the Inspiring Australia initiative and has more recently worked in state disaster response, environment and water agencies in South Australia. She started her career as an ABC journalist and has worked on Australian Aid-funded projects in Asia and the Pacific, developing locals' capacity to assert local knowledge and advocating for community rights. Cobi joined the ACSA Management committee in November 2019.
Key Focus Areas: Planning and evaluation, accessibility and inclusion, indicators for impact
General Member (Sydney)
Patrick’s citizen science initiation began along the Sapphire Coast of NSW. The active and enthusiastic community and supporting organisations provided the ideal incubation chamber to better understand and appreciate citizen science at a local scale. Since that point, Patrick has been an advocate for citizen science, being involved in a variety of citizen science projects including BioBlitzes and ecological surveys as well as supporting the NSW Government to deliver citizen science initiatives. Currently, Patrick is an Environment Officer at the Wingecarribee Shire Council, where he is responsible for delivering biodiversity projects and community education events.
Key Focus Areas: Citizen science tool and framework development, Community Engagement
General Member (Gold Coast)
Rosalinde unexpectedly set foot on Australian soil back in 2014, and fell in love with it's beauty. Rosalinde decided to officially migrate from The Netherlands in 2016 to pursue a career in the environmental sector after completing her wildlife management and community engagement degree with honours. As the Executive Officer at the Gold Coast Catchment Association, she coordinates numerous citizen science programs, organises 6 major events annually (Gold Coast Green Week, Gold Coast BioBlitz, GC Biggest tree planting day, etc.) and manages on-ground restoration and revegetation programs. Furthermore she manages the day-to-day business of the Association, and works alongside numerous partners to strengthen relationships and support program development locally. Rosalinde also supports 40 community groups in her role for GCCA through financial, grant writing and insurance services. Rosalinde is the 2019 Queensland Young Landcare Leader Award winner and will be representing the state at the 2020 National Landcare awards. Rosalinde believes that by engaging community members with on-ground activity you can create real change.
Key Focus Areas: Community engagement, project management and development, grant writing and event management
General Member (Brisbane)
Inspired by her first Indo-Pacific experience in Palau, Jenn moved to Australia to pursue a career that unites science and community engagement to support healthy oceans. As Project Director Community Partnerships at the Great Barrier Reef Foundation, she supports a portfolio of programs that empower individuals and communities to contribute to Reef protection, including citizen science initiatives. As Coordinator for the Reef Citizen Science Alliance, she works with 13 coastal and marine citizen science member groups to foster collaborative strategies that enhance positive citizen science outcomes for the Reef. She believes in the power of citizen science to provide a platform for unlock practical grassroots solutions to environmental challenges.
Key Focus Areas: Policy; Program evaluation; Enhancing citizen science resourcing
General Member (Townsville)
Maxine Newlands is a social scientist in Townsville, Queensland. As a researcher and academic at James Cook University, her research centres on political ecology (combining politics and ecology), environmental communication, and citizen science within stakeholder engagement. As an environmental educator, Max combines her love of science and the social sciences, to explore Reef governance and policy. A secondary interest lies in media, social media and big data analysis to see what we think of the environment and how people can do more. As convenor of the Australian Citizen Science Association, Queensland branch - World Science Festival satellite event at the Museum of Tropic Queensland in 2019, Max coordinated a series of speakers to talk all things reef-related citizen science, showcasing the importance of citizen science in the regions.
Key Focus Areas: Communications, policy, governance, social media/big data analysis, marine parks and their human dimensions
Dr Alice Motion
Host Institution Representative
Dr Alice Motion is a chemist and science communicator based at The University of Sydney. Her research focuses on open science and Science Communication, Outreach, Participation and Education (SCOPE). Finding ways to connect people with science and to make research more accessible is the overarching theme of Alice’s interdisciplinary research.
Alice is the founder of the Breaking Good project – a citizen science project that aims to empower high school and undergraduate students to be active researchers in projects that will improve human health. She has a strong commitment to Citizen Science and is the Co-Chair of the University of Sydney’s Citizen Science Node
, which aims to enhance Citizen Science in Australia through research and practice. Alice will work with ACSA to strengthen participation in, and the impact of, Citizen Science in our region.
Key Focus Areas: University and Community Partnerships, Citizen Science platforms, Open Science, Science Communication and Education
ACSA National Coordinator (Jindabyne)
Amy is ACSA's National Coordinator. She assists with managing the day to day operations of the Association, such as this website, communication (e.g. the ACSA newsletter), records & database management, meeting & event coordination and general office administration. Amy has an environmental science and education background. She began her career with the Waterwatch program in South Australia, which gave her an excellent introduction to citizen science and the role that the community can play in the collection of scientific data. She also has 7 years experience as an Environmental Adviser within a large energy company, which required her to work in some of the most remote locations across south eastern Australia and reinforced her passion for environmental stewardship.
Key Focus Areas: Website Development; Communications; Office Administration
Dr Geoff Garrett AO
We are delighted to have as our patron former Queensland Chief Scientist (2011-2016) Dr. Geoff Garrett AO. Our patron is responsible for raising awareness of ACSA and providing advice on strategic and policy matters, In this role Geoff is an advocate for ACSA, supporting and promoting our association, helping us make connections to potential funding bodies and key influencers and attending (where possible) key stakeholder meetings.
Geoff has led two of the world's major national research and development organisations, CSIRO in Australia (2001-2008) and CSIR in South Africa (1995-2000). He currently lectures in leadership and change management and provides coaching support in these areas to academics and to senior officers of the Australian Public Service. In addition to his role as Patron of ACSA, currently he is also Deputy Chair of the National Youth Science Forum
, and a non-Executive Director of Behaviour Innovation Pty Ltd
More info on Geoff can be found here
International Liaison Officer
Since the inception of ACSA back in May of 2014, Jessie has been heavily involved in its development, serving a total of 4.5 years on the Establishment and Management Committees. As the current International Liaison Officer, Jessie regularly jumps onto late night teleconference calls to keep tabs on the amazing work being done by our colleagues around the world, and to share happenings here at home. Most recently, calls have focused on citizen science in relation to data standardization and interoperability, local to global technical infrastructure, the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and global partnerships, as well as various large-scale initiatives on a variety of topics. Beyond keeping in touch with established sister associations, Jessie is also thrilled continue learning about emerging citizen science associations and networks. This liaising role allows her to further explore her own passions for understanding how culture, practices, and policy influence citizen science in different regions of the world. As a person currently researching #CitSci technology design, she also furthers her understanding of the role that technology may play in increasing scientific and social impacts of projects, whether local or global. If you would like to get involved with international initiatives, please sing out to Jessie via Twitter or the ACSA contact us page
for contact details.
Citizen Science Global Partnership Liaison
A founding member of ACSA, Libby served on the first Committee and chaired the Strategic Planning and Big Projects working groups and helped organise our first conference. She has organised high level international experts and speaking tours to bring International experience to Australia.
As well as advocating for citizen science at all levels, Libby nurtures regional citizen science projects – establishing the Sapphire Coast Marine Discovery Centre and the Atlas of Life/NatureMapr
biodiversity mapping project, building the networks, communities and skills sharing that give them life. The Atlas of Life
currently has over 400 contributors and 24 Moderators and now the NatureMapr Network has 7 regional projects able to mobilise for broad scale research such as post bushfire recovery. Libby brought together the group which produced the Australian Guide to Running a BioBlitz
and the BioBlitz Hub
which offers advice and resources to all.
Libby promotes ACSA and Australian citizen science internationally, at conferences and working groups in Europe and the US and World Data Forum, GEO and UNEA in the Middle East and Africa. Recognising the importance of the SDGs for the sane development of society and for citizen science, Libby established the global SDG & Citizen Science Maximisation Group
and more recently the new Open Science & Citizen Science Community of Practice
under the Citizen Science Global Partnership (CSGP)
and co-chairs the CoP working with UNESCO to develop their Recommendation on Open Science which will be formalised in 2021. Libby is the Australian representative on the CSGP Governance Group developing global agreements for CSGP incorporation.
Key focus areas: Regional and global citizen science strategic development. Encouraging Universities and policy makers to engage with citizen science and supporting citizen science practitioners with tools and guides, including for the SDGs.