Our team and boards

Leadership   Back to Top

Lisa Watts

Lisa Watts

Executive Director

Lisa leads the commercial operations of The Conversation and is responsible for leadership, funding and business development. Previously she was CEO of ArtsHub, the leading news and jobs site for the creative arts industry. Her career includes CEO of a search marketing firm, and GM of the MyCareer online employment business for Fairfax Digital. If you would like to support or partner with us to grow The Conversation, Lisa would be delighted to hear from you.

Misha Ketchell

Misha Ketchell

Editor

Misha Ketchell is Editor of The Conversation. He has been a journalist for more than 20 years and in previous roles he was founding editor of The Big Issue Australia and editor of Crikey, The Reader and The Melbourne Weekly. He worked for The Age as a reporter and feature writer and spent several years at the ABC where he was a TV producer on Media Watch and The 7:30 Report and an editor on The Drum.

Editorial   Back to Top

Charis Palmer

Charis Palmer

Deputy Editor/Chief of Staff

Charis joined The Conversation as News Editor in 2012 after working as editor of Business Spectator, where she was also founding editor of Technology Spectator. She later served as editor of iTnews and has also run her own publishing business focused on the banking sector.

Liz Minchin

Liz Minchin

Executive Editor (Maternity Leave)

Liz is a Walkley award-winning journalist and author, with two decades of experience in newspapers, radio and online. Liz is now Executive Editor, a newly-created role that includes leading The Conversation’s national training program, which teaches pitching, writing and public engagement skills to academics and researchers; working with the senior editing team; and public presentations and outreach for member organisations. She joined The Conversation in 2012 as its first Queensland Editor.

Sunanda Creagh

Sunanda Creagh

Head of Digital Storytelling

Sunanda Creagh is an award-winning journalist and The Conversation's Digital Storytelling Editor. She works with The Conversation's editors and contributing academics to find fresh ways to tell evidence-based stories - through charts, video, audio, interactive time-lines or data visualisations. Previously, Sunanda has been The Conversation's FactCheck Editor, News Editor and Arts + Culture deputy editor. She began her career at The Sydney Morning Herald and worked at the Reuters bureau in Jak...

Suzy Freeman-Greene

Suzy Freeman-Greene

Section Editor: Arts + Culture

Suzy is a former features editor, news editor and arts editor at The Age, where she wrote a regular oped column for many years. She has taught journalism at the University of Melbourne and freelanced in New York. Her essays, criticism, feature articles and fiction have been published widely in places such as Meanjin, Good Weekend, Island and Australian Book Review.

James Whitmore

James Whitmore

Deputy Editor: Arts + Culture

James joined The Conversation after graduating from University of Melbourne. He has been sub-editor, feature writer and wildlife columnist for Farrago, and has presented on SYN community radio.

Lucinda Beaman

Lucinda Beaman

FactCheck Editor

Lucinda has 13 years’ experience reporting for leading Australian and international publications and websites, with a background in financial and world news. As a journalist for The Times in Sydney, Lucinda reported on breaking Australian and foreign news for a global audience. Prior to that, she spent 10 years covering the Australian financial services sector for a range of publications, working as a reporter, editor, video producer and presenter.

Jenni Henderson

Jenni Henderson

Section Editor: Business + Economy

Before starting at The Conversation Jenni worked on the Mindframe national media initiative, helping journalists report on mental illness and suicide. She has also worked for a number of years in radio, online and television journalism for the ABC and for Reuters at the Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur bureaus.

Josh Nicholas

Josh Nicholas

Deputy Editor: Business + Economy

Josh joins The Conversation after stints in print, radio and online. His background in politics, philosophy and economics positions him to tackle issues from a variety of disciplines.

John Watson

John Watson

Section Editor: Cities + Policy

John joined The Conversation in December 2013 as politics & society editor. After two years in that role, he took up the new position of cities & policy editor. John has worked in the news media since he decided in the mid-1980s that a life tracking elephants (in the process of gaining an honours degree in ecology) was less interesting than being a journalist in apartheid-era South Africa. His residence was soon revoked and he returned to Australia. He joined The Conversation after nearly two...

Sophie Heizer

Sophie Heizer

Commissioning Editor, Education

Sophie was a former Politics + Society intern. She is a journalism graduate from RMIT, and has a background in politics and writing. She has interned with Crikey and Happell Media, and occasionally does freelance communications work.

Michael Hopkin

Michael Hopkin

Section Editor: Energy + Environment

Based in Perth, Michael joined The Conversation after several years as a journalist with Fairfax, Sky News and The West Australian. Before moving to Australia from his native UK, he was a senior news and features writer for Nature.

Madeleine De Gabriele

Madeleine De Gabriele

Deputy Editor: Energy + Environment

Madeleine has been with The Conversation since 2015, working as the Arts + Culture deputy section editor until 2017. Prior to that she worked for Deakin University as a research assistant and completed a Bachelor in Media and Communications.

Fron Jackson-Webb

Fron Jackson-Webb

Senior Health + Medicine Editor/Deputy Chief of Staff

Fron joined The Conversation in March 2011 from the Australian Medical Association, where she managed the Victorian media office. She previously worked for BBC Magazines in London and Melbourne consultancy Twenty20 Communications.

Alexandra Hansen

Alexandra Hansen

Section Editor: Health + Medicine

Alexandra has worked in various media and journalism roles in Melbourne, London, and Jakarta. Prior to joining The Conversation she worked at Foreign Policy Think Tank, the Australia India Institute at The University of Melbourne.

Sasha Petrova

Sasha Petrova

Deputy Editor: Health + Medicine

Sasha joined The Conversation in 2015 after working for the Centralian Advocate - a newspaper in Alice Springs - where she was the health and education reporter. Prior to that, she completed a Masters in Journalism and International Relations and wrote regular freelance pieces for various Australian publications.

Amanda Dunn

Amanda Dunn

Section Editor: Politics + Society

Prior to joining The Conversation, Amanda was a reporter and editor with The Age for 16 years, covering health, education, social policy, pop culture and the arts. She was also news and features editor for The Sunday Age, which included overseeing the paper's coverage of the 2007 federal election.

Sarah Keenihan

Sarah Keenihan

Section Editor: Science + Technology

Sarah joined The Conversation in October 2016. She previously worked as a freelance science writer and editor, in science communication and as an immunology researcher in Australia and Indonesia. She has a PhD and a Graduate Diploma in Sciences Communication.

Shelley Hepworth

Shelley Hepworth

Section Editor: Technology

Shelley joined The Conversation in December 2017. Prior to that, she wrote about media and technology for the Columbia Journalism Review in New York, and spent eight years as an editor and producer at SBS in Sydney. She has an MA in journalism from Columbia University.

Michael Lund

Michael Lund

Deputy Editor: Science + Technology

Michael has been a journalist for many years and worked for the BBC, ABC and more recently as a feature writer for The Courier-Mail, based in Brisbane. He has won several awards and commendations for his work including a highly commended in the Walkley Awards. Michael has also worked as a tutor and lecturer in journalism with Queensland University of Technology. He has a long interest in science and technology and holds a BSc (hons) in Mathematics and Physics and a MSc in Pure Mathematics.

James Norman

James Norman

Section Editor

James Norman is a Melbourne based journalist, author and editor. He has written extensively for The Guardian, The Age, The Saturday Paper, Vice USA among others. He is the author of the book Bob Brown: Gentle Revolutionary, the first official biography of Bob Brown. He has also worked for several Australian and international NGOs including the 2017 Nobel-prize winning International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons and the Australian Conservation Foundation.

Veronika Meduna

Veronika Meduna

New Zealand Editor

Veronika is an award-winning journalist and author, with two decades of experience in radio, print and digital. Before joining The Conversation, she produced and hosted a weekly science programme for New Zealand’s public broadcaster RNZ, for which she won several journalism awards, including the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union’s prize for best documentary. She has also contributed to other broadcasters and publications in New Zealand and internationally, including the NZ Listener, NZ Geograph...

Debbie Dickinson

Debbie Dickinson

Head of audience engagement (Maternity Leave)

Debbie Dickinson joins The Conversation having run national and international digital media campaigns, including for the Australian Government on the carbon price, and for the UK Government's UN climate negotiations in Copenhagen. She previously worked as a strategic policy advisor at London's Sustainable Development Commission, and at the Amsterdam-based non-profit, the Global Reporting Initiative.

Molly Glassey

Molly Glassey

Audience Development Manager

Molly Glassey graduated from the Queensland University of Technology with a degree in Journalism, majoring in Law. Since graduating, she has worked as a features writer for Concrete Playground and was the court and crime reporter for The Warwick Daily News. She spent 2015 in Germany freelancing and studying German and Arabic. Molly returns to The Conversation after interning and working on the Arts + Culture desk in 2014.

Emil Jeyaratnam

Emil Jeyaratnam

Multimedia Editor

Emil has a background in documentary post-production and has credits on documentaries for the ABC, SBS, and BBC, amongst others. He has completed a Graduate Diploma of Journalism at La Trobe University, where he co-edited its online magazine, and after a brief stint at Business Spectator, he joins The Conversation as the Multimedia Editor.

Wes Mountain

Wes Mountain

Deputy Multimedia Editor

Wes joined The Conversation in late 2015. In the past he has written for Crikey, Junkee and the Centre for Advancing Journalism’s The Citizen. He is also a cartoonist and has had cartoons featured in the Museum of Australian Democracy’s annual best of Australian political cartoons exhibition, Behind the Lines.

Board of directors   Back to Top

Harrison Young

Harrison Young

Harrison Young was born in Pittsburg, studied at Harvard University and worked on the Washington Post where Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein broke the Watergate scandal. Young was conscripted into the US army, served in Vietnam and then began a career in banking. He was a non-executive director of the Commonwealth Bank until late 2017, is an executive-in-residence at the University of Melbourne's Department of Finance and has written fiction books.

Joseph Skrzynski

Joseph Skrzynski

investment director

Mr Skrzynski is the Founding Partner of Castle Harlan Australian Mezzanine Partners (CHAMP), the pioneering direct investment fund manager in Australia. He is a Director of the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, The Observership Program, the Sydney Film School, the Australian Committee of Human Rights Watch and Philanthropy Australia. He is an Officer of the Order of Australia.

Lisa Watts

Lisa Watts

Executive Director

Lisa leads the commercial operations of The Conversation and is responsible for leadership, funding and business development. Previously she was CEO of ArtsHub, the leading news and jobs site for the creative arts industry. Her career includes CEO of a search marketing firm, and GM of the MyCareer online employment business for Fairfax Digital. If you would like to support or partner with us to grow The Conversation, Lisa would be delighted to hear from you.

Linda Price

Linda Price

Group Vice President, Executive Programs, Gartner Asia Pacific. Director of Australian Institute of Management Victoria & Tasmania. Previously HR and IT Director, Fairfax Media.

Richard Leder

Richard Leder

Partner at Corrs Chambers Westgarth specialising in Media Law and Litigation. Corrs Melbourne office Pro Bono Partner. Deputy Chairman of the Royal Children’s Hospital Foundation. Director of Australian Friends of Asha for Slums Limited. Committee member of the Melbourne Press Club and Law Council Media and Communications Committee. Member Melbourne University Centre for Media and Communications Law Advisory Board.

Editorial board   Back to Top

Natalie Mast

Natalie Mast

Associate Director, Business Intelligence & Analytics

Natalie's PhD is in the field of Political Science, and examines the influence of institutional design upon the organisation of parties and the behaviour of members in the European Parliament. Her current research interests include: research performance, bibilometrics and university ranking systems.

Cathy Foley

Cathy Foley

Deputy Director and Science Director Manfacturing Flagship CSIRO

Dr. Cathy Foley is the Deputy Director and Science Director of the CSIRO Manufacturing Flagship. She has worked in Superconducting Devices and Applications Project which is developing superconducting systems for mineral exploration, detection of metal for quality assurance in manufacturing, terahertz imaging, submarine and UXO detection. This multiple million-dollar project assisted with the discovery and delineation of the BHPB Cannington Silver mine and her team is currently commercialisin...

Duncan Ivison

Duncan Ivison

Professor of Political Philosophy, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research)

I am currently Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research) and also teach in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Sydney. I did my BA at McGill University in Montreal, where I grew up, and my MSc and PhD at the London School of Economics and Political Science. I have held academic appointments previously at the ANU, York University (UK), and the University of Toronto. Between 2010-2105, I was Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at the University of Sydney. I was elected a Fello...

Julianne Schultz

Julianne Schultz

Founding Editor of Griffith REVIEW; Professor, Griffith Centre for Social and Cultural Research

Julianne Schultz is the founding editor of Griffith REVIEW and a professor in the Griffith Centre for Social and Cultural Research at Griffith University. She is a member of the Editorial Board, The Conversation. She has written extensively about the media and is the author of Reviving the Fourth Estate: Democracy, accountability and the media (Cambridge University Press, 1998), Steel City Blues (Penguin, 1985) and the librettos Black River and Going into Shadows. Griffith Review is ...

Martyn Hook

Martyn Hook

Professor

Prof. Dr Martyn Hook is Professor of Architecture at RMIT University, Dean at RMIT's School of Media & Communication, and Director of multi award winning iredale pedersen hook architects, a studio practice based in Melbourne and Perth dedicated to appropriate design of effective sustainable buildings with a responsible environmental and social agenda.

Pauline Nestor

Pauline Nestor

Pauline Nestor is Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research) at Monash University. Before this appointment Professor Nestor was Associate Dean (Research) in the Faculty of Arts, as well as serving as Academic Adviser to the Office of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research).

Glenn Wightwick

Glenn Wightwick

DVC Innovation & Enterprise

I am Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Innovation and Enterprise at UTS. I have been mucking around with computers since I was ten, and spent a wonderful 27 years working for IBM involved in everything from research through to the systems for the Olympics in Sydney and Nagano!

Merlin Crossley

Merlin Crossley

Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academic and Professor of Molecular Biology

I have been doing molecular biology since 1985 and been in academic administration since 2004. I continue to run a large laboratory and to teach at UNSW Sydney. My lab has a blog with posts every Friday https://wordpress.com/view/crossleylab.wordpress.com our lab website is http://www.crossleylab.unsw.edu.au/ We work on DNA-binding proteins that facilitate epigenetic changes to turn genes on and off. We are interested in developing ways to artificially regulate the expression of par...

Julie Willis

Julie Willis

Professor Julie Willis is Pro Vice Chancellor (Research Capability) at the University of Melbourne. She is a Professor of Architecture in the Faculty of Architecture, Building & Planning. She has extensive editorial and editorial board experience, including as editor of the Encyclopedia of Australian Architecture (2012).

Commercial and finance   Back to Top

Lisa Watts

Lisa Watts

Executive Director

Lisa leads the commercial operations of The Conversation and is responsible for leadership, funding and business development. Previously she was CEO of ArtsHub, the leading news and jobs site for the creative arts industry. Her career includes CEO of a search marketing firm, and GM of the MyCareer online employment business for Fairfax Digital. If you would like to support or partner with us to grow The Conversation, Lisa would be delighted to hear from you.

Damian Thompson

Damian Thompson

Director of Foundation Relations

Damian came to The Conversation from the Victorian Department of Primary Industries, where he worked on programs to deliver services to the agriculture sector. He previously worked as a policy adviser to the Victorian Minister for Agriculture and Small Business Department.

Maria Troumboukis

Maria Troumboukis

Finance Manager

Maria is responsible for finance and operations and has extensive government experience, having previously worked as the Finance Manager at Arts Victoria within the Victorian Department of Premier and Cabinet where she was responsible for reporting and managing large multi-million dollar operating and capital budgets. A qualified CPA, she also worked in the South Australian State Government in Services SA and the Auditor-General’s Department.

Felicity Burke

Felicity Burke

Executive Team Assistant

Felicity is a keen painter and has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Monash University- where she spent some of her time studying in Italy. She joins The Conversation after working in a number of commercial art galleries across Melbourne, and has worked as an Executive Assistant within retail distribution and real estate.

Suji Gunawardhana

Suji Gunawardhana

Management Accountant

A Finance and Accounting Professional with global exposure, who is an associate member of CPA Australia & special degree in Business Administration with experience in the fields of Financial & Management Accounting and Auditing. He previously worked for KPMG and CITIC Resources Australia.

Kate Higgins

Kate Higgins

Director of Development

After working in development and fundraising in the education sector for more than 10 years, Kate joins The Conversation to look after donor relations, bequests and major gifts. She is a firm believer in the power of philanthropy and welcomes the opportunity to hear from anyone interested in supporting The Conversation so that it can remain free and independent for all.

Technology and Product   Back to Top

James Hill

James Hill

Head of Engineering

James studied computer science at UNSW. Since then his professional career has been equally split between Australia & the UK. Currently residing in London, he's joined The Conversation eager to work on meaningful software around the way we disseminate information.

Gin Atkins

Gin Atkins

Head of Product

Gin has spent the last 15 years learning about, designing for, and leading people in both product and service environments. Drawing from a uniquely diverse set of experiences that span youth work, management consulting, enterprise innovation labs and tech startups, she combines incisive analysis and strategic thinking with a deep care for, and sensitivity to how people think and feel.

Mark Cipolla

Mark Cipolla

Developer

After finishing a degree in Multimedia Design at Monash University, Mark has worked with a number of design and development teams, including Realestate.com.au and SitePoint.

Nick Browne

Nick Browne

Developer

Nick studied computer science at RMIT University. He has worked in Australia, India, Hong Kong and America before joining The Conversation.

Eleanor Kiefel Haggerty

Eleanor Kiefel Haggerty

Developer

Eleanor studied Archaeology and Classics at The University of Queensland. She began programming shortly after finishing University. Two years and 28 countries later, Eleanor joined The Conversation.

Josh Bassett

Josh Bassett

Data Platform Technical Lead

A UNSW alumnus, Josh enjoys applying CompSci rigour to all manners of problems. Prior to joining The Conversation he worked on several large projects including the Bendigo Bank mobile app, the New Zealand Stock Exchange, the Clear Grain Exchange, and the WordPress iPhone app.

Ben Macleod

Ben Macleod

Commercial Platform Senior Developer

Taking a left turn after a BA majoring in Linguistics, narrowly avoiding a career in rock and roll, Ben studied Software Development at RMIT. He comes to The Conversation from working on the TalkBox platform at ImpactData, and is keen to contribute to shaping the future of journalism.

Tiago Amaro

Tiago Amaro

Developer

Tiago studied computer science at UFF (Universidade Federal Fluminense, Brazil). His motto is to write better software that people will love.