Beth Mellick – Executive Director
Beth has worked for the Trust since 2007. Prior to this, she worked in the environment movement for 15 years, following undergraduate and postgraduate studies in gender. Her work has involved campaign and project management, project development, media, fundraising, and activism, on issues as broad as transport, climate change, international gender and trade, sustainable aquaculture, sustainable development, and natural resource management. She is School Council President of the local secondary college, secretary of her local Landcare group, and regional coordinator of the Swift Parrot count for BirdLife Australia.
Board of Trustees
Jane Halliday – Chair
Jane Halliday (nee Wettenhall) is an epidemiologist with expertise in human genetics and public health. She leads a research group at the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute in Melbourne and is a Professor in the Department of Paediatrics at the University of Melbourne. Although her career has been focused in this academic and research world, she has had a longstanding interest in the environment, completing her undergraduate degree with a major in Zoology and being an avid birdwatcher. She has much experience in writing and reviewing grants for her own research and has brought this expertise to WET to assist in the grant-making process. She continues to take every opportunity to learn about and explore projects that improve our biodiversity and manage our fragile ecosystem.
Gib is an award-winning author and has edited, written interpretive signage and published books on landscapes and their cultural heritage, focusing in particular on the Indigenous side of the story. He is publications manager of the Great Dividing Trail Association and secretary of Ballarat Region Treegrowers. He is a long-standing member of the Mollongghip Community Hall committee in the rural settlement where he lives. A lawyer and journalist by training, Gib has previously acted as news editor of The Melbourne Times, manager of co-operative programs for the Ministry of Housing, business manager for the Commission for the Future and editor of Australian Forest Grower magazine. He was on the Wettenhall Environment Trust board since its inception, and Chair for 17 years.
Bill farmed at Streatham in western Victoria for 40 years, after graduating with an honours degree in Zoology from Monash University. He worked to balance running a profitable farm with achieving environmental improvements. He was also involved in various community groups, and a member of boards of conservation, educational and health organisations, including Trust for Nature, Geelong Grammar School, and Beaufort and Skipton Health Service (Life Governor). He is a trustee of Clarkesdale Bird Sanctuary, a member of the Grampians Gariwerd National Park Advisory Committee, and immediate past President of Friends of the Forgotten Woodlands. Bill and Trina now live near Dunkeld.
Geoff has worked for the past three decades in natural resource management. He is experienced in facilitating interactions between scientists, policy makers and the community, especially looking at trade-offs between agriculture and the environment. He is a Director of Natural Decisions, an interdisciplinary consulting company specialising in cost analysis and structured decision-making. His work has included: water quality improvement planning for the Great Barrier Reef, climate change vulnerability assessment, integrated assessment of bushfire risk and threatened species management. In his ‘spare time’ he is a nature photographer and dedicated blogger on Natural Newstead https://geoffpark.wordpress.com.
Adam majored in economics at Monash University. He has lived in East Tolans (Deniliquin) since 1978, endeavouring to make a living off the farm as well as improving its biodiversity. The farm has won an environmental award from the Conargo Shire in 2004 and is part of an environmental champions program. Adam has been president of school councils, tennis clubs, and football committees and is currently Chair of West Berriquin Irrigators that advise Murray Irrigation on water policy. Adam is one of Norman Wettenhall’s sons.
Kirsten Hengen – Chair, Finance Committee
Kirsten is a manager in EY’s Climate Change and Sustainability Services team in Melbourne. Her job has her looking at helping a wide range of organisations focus and maximise the positive impacts they can have on the broader community and environment. She studied accounting at the University of Kentucky (USA) and holds the designation of Certified Public Accountant. Kirsten is active in her community through providing financial services volunteering to small not-for-profits as well as volunteering for local environmental projects.
Libby is a Senior Research Fellow in the School of Ecosystem and Forest Sciences at The University of Melbourne. She is a plant ecologist, who has always been fascinated by the process of change in ecological communities (particularly woodlands!), and the factors driving those changes. She is also deeply interested in the process of decision-making in natural resource management and conservation, and works closely with management agencies as an environmental decision analyst to tackle some our most wicked problems. More recently she has been working to understand the impacts of the 2019-20 fires on biodiversity to help guide management.
Trudy has had a long career in community development, social policy and philanthropy. Through her work at the Stegley Foundation and Australian Communities Foundation (ACF) she has considerable expertise in the development, running and evaluation of grantmaking programs, including those which focus on conservation and the environment, as well as in the governance and management of philanthropic foundations. She currently volunteers with organisations working towards justice and self-determination for First Nations people.