The 2017-2018 Board sees the re-election of sitting members: Jessica Cutting, Jane Monk, Adam Terrill & Jillian Smith. As there were seven nominations for seven vacancies no election was required. VPELA welcomes new Board members: Meg Lee, Gadens, Christina McRae, Urbis & Meagan Merritt, City of Moreland who will join the Board in October. Congratulations to you all!
Tamara Brezzi - President
Tamara Brezzi joined the VPELA Board in December 2000. Since then she has acted as Executive Treasurer, Executive Secretary, and Vice President (Legal), before her election to the role of President in 2011.
She is a Partner with Norton Rose Fulbright working within the Environment and Planning Group where she has been working since 1998. Tamara was previously employed as a Town Planner at Stonnington City Council from 1992-1998.
Jane Monk – Vice President (Planning)
Jane Monk joined the Board in October 2011.
She is an urban planner of many years experience including as a planner in local government, as a past Senior Member of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal, as Chair of the former Government’s Priority Development Panel, and currently as Director of State Planning Services in DPCD.
She is committed to the professional development of the planning and allied professions as well as to the benefits of multi and inter-disciplinary approaches when conceptualising and deciding about the future use and development of land.
She is also a VPELA Fellow and the 2010 recipient of VPELAs Paul Jerome Award.
Jane Sharp – Vice President (Legal)
Jane Sharp joined the Board in October 2006 and was elected as Treasurer in 2013. She is a member of the Victorian Bar. Qualified in planning, she previously worked in local government as a town planner and advocate. Jane also has experience in a private consultancy as a town planner and worked in the Planning & Environment Group at Maddocks Lawyers.
Michael Deidun – Secretary
Michael joined the Board in October 2010. He is a full-time Member of VCAT. He previously served as a member of the organising committee for the State Planning Conference in 2006, 2007 & 2008, culminating in a position as co-convenor of the conference in 2009 along with Lester Townsend. Michael has extensive planning experience including a number of years in Local Government.
He is committed to extending the training and networking opportunities available to members.
Frank Butera - Treasurer
Frank joined the Board in October 2012. Frank is an Associate with Arup and specialises as an Acoustic Consultant and has over 15 years experience in consulting on a range of diverse projects throughout Australia, predominantly in the fields of acoustic planning, acoustic policy and infrastructure, and environmental noise. Frank’s involvement with VPELA commenced in 1996 and in 2002 won the inaugural VPELA Peet & Co. Young Professional Award.
Jessica Cutting, Executive Director
Jessica joined the Board in October 2011. She is a qualified Town Planner with over 9 years experience in Local, State Government and the private sector. She is Senior Project Manager at Planning Panels Victoria and works on a broad range of legal,planning and environmental issues. Her previous role as VPELA YPG Co-Convenor has enabled her to establish and develop a strong inter-disciplinary network across the organisation.
Adam Terrill - Executive Director
Adam joined the Board in 2014. He is Senior Principal Town Planner with Tract Consultants – Australia’s first landscape architecture firm and now one of Melbourne’s largest planning consultancies. Over his 10 years as a VPELA member, he was a Young Professionals Group (YPG) Committee Member from 2004 – 2008, receiving the Young Professionals Award in 2006 that allowed him to travel to Thailand to assist with the Tsunami rebuilding efforts. He has also organised and attended many events including the annual conference.
As a Board member Adam is keen to build on the strong support VPELA offers to young professionals and provide improved technology to engage with members.
Meg joined the Board in 2017. She is a Partner, Planning & Environment at Gadens. She has over 20 years experience working closely with clients to obtain planning and environmental approvals across all sectors including major infrastructure and renewable projects, greenfield and apartment developments, office and industrial sites and retail developments. She also advises clients with industrial operations on EPA compliance.
Meg believes that VPELA plays a vital role in connecting the different parts of the profession and has a particular interest in lifting the profile of the "E" in VPELA
Christina joined the Board in 2017. She is a Director at Urbis and has extensive experience in the industry in both statutory and strategic planning. Her practice at Urbis involves advising public and private sector clients on land use development strategies and navigating the planning system.
She enjoys all areas of multi residential, retail, liquor licensing, mixed use, major project management and tricky planning questions. She has been an active member of VPELA for 15 years and relishes the opportunity to contribute to the continuing strong role the Association plays in the industry .
Meagan joined the Board in 2017. She is a qualified Urban Planner and is currently employed as a Principal Urban Planner at Moreland City Council. Meagan has held various positions within the planning departments at the City of Maribyrnong, Tract Consultants and the City of Melbourne. She has worked on a broad range of statutory and strategic projects and has a particular interest in large scale residential and VCAT matters.
Meagan was the recipient of the VPELA Young Professional Award in 2005 and has been a member of the organisation since 2003. She was a member of the Young Professional Committee for 5 years, 3 of which she held the position of Co- Convenor.
Meagan hope her local government expertise and commitment will benefit the organisation and its members.
Carlo joined the Board in 2016. He is an Associate (Traffic Engineer) with Traffix Group and has been in the industry for over eight years. Since joining VPELA he has been on the Young Professional Committee for the last 5 years and has acted as Convenor of the Committee from 2013-2016. In 2015 he received the VPELA YPG Award.
He has a diverse background, including music, hospitality and education and is currently completing his Masters in Urban Planning & Environment at RMIT part time. His longstanding involvement with VPELA Young Professionals has allowed him to network amongst young VPELA members across the disciplines.
Oona joined the Board in 2016. She is a Director at Ecology and Heritage Partners. She is a qualified archaeologist and has been actively working as a heritage consultant for over 20 years. Working across a number of heritage sub-disciplines, she served for six years on the Victorian Heritage Council. She is the current Victorian Vice President and past National President of the Australian Association of Consulting Archaeologists.
She wishes to assist VPELA to continue to be truly multi-disciplinary and support the Association as an active Board member ensuring it meets its objectives in our rapidly changing world.
As a planner with more than 20 years’ experience, Colleen has the technical experience and expertise to add value to the VPELA Board and speak up for others including those without a voice.
Colleen believes that there is an important role for representational bodies to play in public discourse on planning issues. Whether it be reforms to planning controls, like the Residential Zones, issues affecting the independence of planners at all levels and bodies or the need for more vocal leadership. She is passionate about improving the planning industry, as well as creating the best places possible for the future.
She is interested in assisting with the development of policy in a time when politics often overrun the basic principles of fairness and equity. She is keen to be constructive and work towards solutions for industry issues.
Jillian joined the Board in 2014. She is a Senior Project Manager with the Department of State Development Business and Innovation. She has been working in the planning industry in Victoria for 13 years in both government and private sector roles. Since 2006 she has been working in facilitation with the State Government, assisting proponents to navigate the maze of regulatory approvals, providing frank and fearless advice to proponents and Ministers, and working on very interesting projects across all industry sectors.
She has been an active participant in VPELA since 2001. She is keen to assist VPELA in the provision of consistently high professional development and networking opportunities. She hopes to an economic development and international investment perspective to the Board.
Lisa is an Associate at Contour Consultants. She has been employed at Contour since 2003 and worked on a wide range of statutory planning projects in Melbourne and regional Victoria, with a specific focus on employment, retail and institutional projects. She is interested in the legislative framework and statutory planning processes – how they are interpreted and implemented and how they can be improved and made more efficient.
She has been a member of VPELA since 2004. From 2006 – 2008, she was a member of the Young Professionals Group (YPG) and from 2009 – 2011 she was the Co-Convenor of the YPG. She hopes to bring a diverse statutory experience to the Board as a consultant planner, and looks forward to working with the broad specialist disciplines within the Association membership.
David was elected to the Board in 2016. He is a Partner at HWL Ebsworth Lawyers in Melbourne. As a qualified Town Planner and Lawyer he has held a diverse range of roles in the planning and development industry over the past 20 years.
He is passionate about Planning and the Environment and throughout his career has sought to give back to the industry through his ongoing involvement with industry groups including VPELA and PIA.
He brings to the Board valuable industry experience and insights gained from working in local government, state government, private industry and legal practice.
Kathy Mitchell - Immediate Past President
Kathy joined the Board in 1999 and was elected President of VPELA in October 2004. As the Chief Panel Member of Planning Panels Victoria, she brings strong, well informed and robust leadership to VPELA. Kathy is at the forefront of major planning issues and her continued involvement since 2003 as a State Judge for the UDIA Awards of Excellence ensures that she maintains a critical understanding of development issues. Before commencing with PPV some 12 years ago (during which time she was a sessional member of VCAT) Kathy worked as a planning consultant, an academic and had a stint in local government.
Kathryn Mitchell 2004-2011
Ian Lonie (deceased) 2002-2004
Henry Turnbull 2000-2002
Jane Nathan 1997-2000
Peter Barber 1989-1997
Jane joined VPELA in April 1999. She worked in Compulsory Third Party insurance for 9 years prior to joining VPELA, supervising Common Law personal injury claims and then managing Human Resources. Jane has a Bachelor of Arts from LaTrobe and an Associate Diploma in Marketing from Swinburne.
Grace commenced with VPELA in April 2012, in a permanent part-time capacity. She has a PA/adminstration background, having previously worked with a leading industry association for the last 12 years before joining VPELA.