Joel McKerrow is a writer, speaker, educator, community arts worker and one of Australia’s most successful internationally touring performance poets. Based out of Melbourne, Australia he is the Artist Ambassador for the aid and development organisation ‘TEAR Australia’ and was the co-founder of community arts organisation, ‘The Centre for Poetics and Justice’ (2010-2013). Joel was the third ever Australian representative at the Individual World Poetry Slam Championships in the USA (2012), was invited to perform his own show at the famed Nuyorican Poets Cafe in NYC, was invited to perform at the Sydney Opera House at the Australian National Poetry Slam Finals in 2013 and is a TEDx speaker and performer. He is also the frontman poet from the band, ‘Joel McKerrow & the Mysterious few’ and spends much of his time running poetry workshops within schools and other organisations around poetry, creativity, identity, social justice and spirituality. Joel has been touring extensively throughout Australia and the world (USA, UK, EUROPE, NEW ZEALAND) over the last few years on the Global Poetics tour (2011), the Please Resist Me tour (2012), the Soles of Australia tour (2012), the One Foot in the Clay global tour (2012-13) and the These Wandering Feet tour (2013). Throughout this time he has performed alongside such poetry greats as Anis Mojgani, Shane Koyczan, Sarah Kay, Phil Kaye, Ken Arkind, Buddy Wakefield, Mahogany Brown, Jive Poetic, Carrie Rudzinski and Luka Lesson.
With a passionate performance style he has been commended by Canadian performance poet Shane Koyczan as, ‘an exceptional spoken word artist…fiercely political and humane’. And by the Australian National Poetry Slam Champion, Luka Lesson, as, ‘a true leader in Australia’s performance poetry scene…A man who can tear a roof down with his performances and bring tears with his subtle eloquence’.
KITTY VAN CUYLENBURG
Kitty is a hydrogeologist, geologist and sustainability consultant. She has spent the better part of the past 5 years in the middle of Australia working on mine sites in Iron Ore, Coal Seam Gas, Mineral Sands and Gold resources – and is usually the only female on the team! Her work involves developing water supplies for mining operations, protecting natural springs, logging geologic core and characterizing groundwater resources. She is also passionate about learning and reading, and is a founding member of Library For All, an ed-tech startup building digital libraries for developing communities. Her hope is that all students around the world have access to the resources they need for learning, especially about geology!
For fun she goes exploring for urban geologic treasures in the City of Melbourne, rears sheep and cows on her family farm in Apollo Bay and is writing a first-rocks book for her baby girl Emmie.
Guy is an artist, barista and Industrial Design student based in Melbourne. Throughout the years he has worked on farms, in construction and as a chef. As an artistic medium his primary choice is paper. He has exhibited work in Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sydney and Melbourne. Origami has been a life long creative pursuit, meditation, toy, tool and art. In the area of design he has applied concepts and techniques into lighting design, furniture and ceramics.
I am a 17 year old year 11 Mount Eliza Secondary College student who is passionate about an idea and pursuing it. I sought out help, pushed myself further and further and have developed into a confident public speaker running a campaign. What I have achieved and what I have learned is now making me a better student and a better person, in every way. I am studying German, Psychology and Legal studies and I aspire to be a child psychologist due to my love of kids and desire to help them. I am filled with energy, positivity and I love being busy. I have a love for travel as I spent four months living in Switzerland and I have visited Germany, France, Italy and New Zealand.
Trish Campbell is a postdoctoral researcher at the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health and an Honorary Fellow at the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute. While studying for her Bachelor of Science degree, she attended a seminar on how mathematics is used to study the spread of infectious diseases – and was amazed that her lifetime passion for mathematics could be used to improve lives. Trish’s PhD research improved understanding of how whooping cough spreads and developed strategies to protect infants too young to be vaccinated. Continuing in the field of infectious diseases, Trish has recently started researching the spread of skin infections, a major cause of poor health in Australian Indigenous populations.
Jordan is a Year 11 guitarist and student at Frankston high school aspiring to be the best musician he can be, exploring the creative potential in a multitude of musical genres, most notably, Jazz, Heavy Metal and Classical. Jordan has performed in many different contrasting ensembles in many differing contexts, and wants to continue to expand his knowledge and skills to the levels of virtuosity.
After completing a Bachelor of Education with Honours, Emma Donaldson, 30, was given the opportunity to co-ordinate gifted education at an independent school. During this time she developed and now co-directs two education-focused businesses PLIESE Pty Ltd and Colours of Grey Matters.
It is Emma’s experience of the challenges of disability/disadvantage in education, which drives her to seek better solutions.
Emma is passionate about good business and sustainable partnerships and has furthered her education completing her EMBA with distinction in 2012. At the age of 26, she was a Victorian State Finalist in the Marie Clare Telstra Business Women’s Awards for her work in special needs and good business practice.
For the past 6 years, Emma has been consulting in the Caribbean to assist in the development of education pedagogy, programs and services based on inclusion strategy.
Her immediate previous experience includes running an International focused research project for best practice teaching in autism spectrum disorders, creating “The Solution Studio” to service the British Virgin Islands community to address wide ranging needs, specifically ADHD, dyslexia and giftedness and has recently launched the world first Autism Massive Open Online Course at Swinburne University for over 15,000 participants.
Emma is a lecturer for pre-service and postgraduate diploma teachers at Swinburne University. Emma has immediate experience with mental health and understands the importance of early intervention and the necessity of evidence based practices. Emma is a proud blueVoice carer member for Beyond Blue, National Advisory Committee for the program NewAccess and National Advisory Committee member of the Workplace and Mental Health initiative.
Currently, Emma is completing a PhD in Education focused on Cognitive Engagement for learners at risk.
Christian Williams was one of Australia’s best athletes before becoming and an award-winning teacher at St Michael’s Parish School. His groundbreaking teaching strategies using Olympic athletes as literacy mentors, Nike sponsorship projects and Physics Professors to build time machines have inspired school leaders around the world and his ideas have changed 1000’s of students lives.
Christian has presented motivational talks to children at more than 100 schools, sharing insights into how sport can build resilience, confidence, good health and self-esteem. An ambassador for HeartKids, Christian mentors children and teenagers with heart conditions and his positive attitude is infectious and is inspiring children and adults alike to get up off the couch and get active. He is currently a state finalist for Young Australian of the Year.
Ailie Hansen is a self titled “creative”, currently completing her honours year at RMIT in industrial design. Ailie has studied industrial design and worked in design roles in both Germany and Australia. Such roles have been for companies including AIRR, Eco-Innovators and Ic!berlin. Ailie is currently the undergraduate Designer at Geyer’s Melbourne studio. Ailie has a huge belief in design thinking and the idea that everyone is a designer. Ailie feels creativity doesn’t mean being able to paint or draw, but simply being able to think outside the square; something we can all learn to do
Charlie Hobman is an advocate for human rights, particularly for the LGBTIQA community and for rape victims. During his time spreading awareness, he has spoken on several radio shows, been interviewed for Minus18, and has reached out to people through his YouTube channel. Charlie is passionate about human rights, and educating society on the broad spectrum of gender identity.
Although young, Charlie feels empowered and ready to do what it takes to make an impact on the lives of LGBTIQA people. His ultimate goal is to end discrimination and systematic oppression against the LGBTIQA community, and ensure that all sexual orientations and gender identities are recognized and acknowledged appropriately.