CONFERENCE ADVISORY COMMITTEE

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Dr Christina Pollard (Chair)

Associate Professor, Curtin School of Population Health, Curtain University

Dr Pollard's research and practice focus is public health, with a particular focus on population groups who are vulnerable to poor health due to their social, environmental or economic circumstances. Christina has worked as a career public servant and academic, she calls herself a ‘pracademic’ –recognising the need for translating research into policy and practice. Throughout her career she undertaken extensive research to inform policy advice and advocacy and to develop and evaluation successful population health interventions.  Dr Pollard is a public health dieitian and has managed the development, implementation and evaluation of numerous government public heatlh policies and interventions. She led the Gofor2&5 fruit and vegetable and Find 30 Physical Activity campaigns and the National Obesity Taskforce's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Strategy.  Currently Christina is Asssociate Professor of Public Health Priorities and Director of the Public Health Advocacy Institute and Mentally Healthy WA and the Act-Belong-Commit mental health promotion campaign based at Curtin University. 

Dr Pollard led the Healthway funded 'Food Law, Policy and Communications to Improve Public Health- Research Translation Project' analysing three large nutrition-related government datasets to build the capacity for nutrition epidemiology in Western Australia to inform policy and practice.  Her aim is to drive a research agenda for public health in Australia.

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Adjunct Professor Terry Slevin

CEO, Public Health Association of Australia

Terry Slevin has been Chief Executive Office for the Public Health Association of Australia (PHAA) since May 2018.  He is Adjunct Professor in the School of Psychology at Curtin University an Adjunct Professor in the College of Health and Medicine at the Australian National University.  He is a Fellow of PHAA and was the first Vice President (Development) of the Association.

Adj Prof Slevin is a regular media commentator on all aspects of public health and cancer, ranging from causes and early detection, to broader chronic disease prevention including nutrition, physical activity, weight control, alcohol, sun protection and gun control.  He also has a special interest in Occupational and environmental cancer risks.

Until April 2018 he was Director, Education and Research at Cancer Council WA where he worked since 1994. Mr Slevin holds a Masters in Public Health and an Honours degree in Psychology.

As well as serving as Chair of Cancer Council Australia’s Occupational and Environmental Cancer Risk Committee, Mr Slevin has previously chaired Cancer Council's Skin Cancer Committee and was founding Chair of Nutrition and Physical Activity Committee, where he served for 10 years.  He has contributed to the planning of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) World Cancer Congress from 2012 to 2016 and was Co Chair of the Scientific Committee for the World Cancer Congress in Kuala Lumpur in 2018.

He is the editor of a book on skin cancer Sun, Skin and Health, released by CSIRO Publishing in 2014 and has published over 70 papers in the peer reviewed literature and a series of 15 articles on cancer myths.  

His current focus is on promoting evidence based public health policy in Australia with a focus on equity and improved health outcomes for the most disadvantaged Australians.

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Ms Margaret Miller

Senior Research Project Manager, School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Edith Cowan University

Margaret is a Senior Research Project Manager in the School of Medicine and Health Sciences

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Associate Professor Kathryn Backholer

National Heart Foundation Future Leader Fellow, Associate Director of the Global Obesity Centre (GLOBE), 
World Health Organisation (WHO) Collaborating, Centre for Obesity Prevention

Kathryn is a National Heart Foundation Future Leader Fellow and Associate Director of the Global Obesity Centre (GLOBE), a World Health Organisation (WHO) Collaborating Centre for Obesity Prevention. Kathryn is the co-convenor of the PHAA Food and Nutrition Special Interest Group and a PHAA board member. Kathryn leads a program of research focused on the social, commercial and cultural determinants of population health and is particularly interested in interdisciplinary solutions to complex public health problems. 

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Dr Penny Love

Accredited Practicing Dietitian (APD), Senior Lecturer for Public Health and Community Nutrition, School of Exercise & Nutrition Sciences (SENS), Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition (IPAN)

Dr Penny Love is an Accredited Practicing Dietitian (APD) and a senior lecturer for Public Health and Community Nutrition within the School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences (SENS).  As a research fellow within the Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition (IPAN), her research focuses on the translation, adoption and sustained implementation of early childhood prevention initiatives at scale to inform the identification of key intervention points within existing service delivery systems. An early interest into the impacts gained through a population-wide approach of environmental and policy changes led to her PhD research developing country-specific food-based dietary guidelines for South Africans. Her career has included a focus on nutrition in the early years, Indigenous nutrition, healthy lifestyles, and food security.

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Professor Mark Lawrence

Professor, Faculty of Health, School of Exercise & Nutrition Sciences (SENS, Deakin University

Mark is Professor of Public Health Nutrition at the Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition, Deakin University. He has 35 years’ experience working as a practitioner and academic in food and nutrition policy at local, state, national and international levels. Mark’s research interests focus on healthy and sustainable food systems, dietary guidelines, ultra-processed foods, Nutrient Reference Values and food regulation. He has published widely on the topics of healthy and sustainable diets and healthy and sustainable foods systems. His latest research book is titled, ‘Mark Lawrence and Sharon Friel (editors). Healthy and Sustainable Food Systems’, Routledge. He is:
• External advisor to the World Health Organization (Dietary patterns for health);
• External advisor to the Food and Agriculture Organization (Sustainable healthy diets);
• Member of the International Union of Nutritional Sciences Task Force on Sustainable Diets;
• Chair of the Advisory Board for Cochrane Nutrition;
• Board member at Food Standards Australia New Zealand;
• Member of the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council’s Synthesis and Translation of Research Evidence committee;
• Team leader, the Australian Research Council project, ‘Reforming evidence synthesis and translation for food and nutrition policy’; and
• Former member of Australian National Health and Medical Research Council’s Dietary Guidelines Working Committee.

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Dr Alexandra Jones

Research Fellow - Food Policy and Law, The George Institute for Global Health

Alexandra Jones is an NHMRC Emerging Leadership Fellow leading a program of work on regulatory strategies to promote healthier, more sustainable diets. 

Ali’s work uses an innovative mix of law and science to generate evidence that supports policymakers to design and implement effective public health regulations. Her PhD explored Australia’s Health Star Rating system and similar front-of-pack nutrition labels used worldwide. Her current research interests include food labelling, composition, pricing and marketing policies. She also supports the Institute’s growing work on the commercial determinants of health.

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Dr Katherine Cullerton

Senior Lecturer at the School of Public Health, University of Queensland.

Katherine Cullerton is a Senior Lecturer at the School of Public Health, University of Queensland. Her research focuses on why evidence doesn’t translate into public health policy, increasing the agency of advocates to influence public health policy, and exploring whether it is ever acceptable for nutrition researchers to engage with the food industry. Katherine is also a qualified dietitian and has previously worked in a range of settings, including with Aboriginal communities, schools, and as a national policy officer.

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Rebecca Mete

Education and Professional Services Manager, Dietitians Australia

Rebecca is an Education and Professional Services Manager at Dietitians Australia.

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Courtney Thompson

PhD Candidate and Sessional Academic in the School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, Queensland University of Technology

Courtney Thompson completed a Bachelor of Nutrition Science (BNutrSc) and graduated with First Class Honours from a Bachelor of Biomedical Science (Honours) (Nutrition) at Queensland University of Technology (QUT). Courtney's honours thesis resulted in the development of the AUS-R NKQ, a nationally valid measure of nutrition knowledge. Currently, she is a PhD Candidate and Sessional Academic in the School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences at QUT.  Her research in public health and community nutrition focuses on the development, validation and assessment of food literacy and its relationship to diet quality and food security. Courtney is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA), on the Student and Young Professionals in Public Health (SYPPH) committee and an Associate Nutritionist (ANutr) with the Nutrition Society of Australia.  She currently holds memberships with the Public Health Association of Australia, The Nutrition Society and The International Society of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity.

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Cherie Russell

PhD Candidate, Faculty of Health, School of Exercise & Nutrition Sciences (SENS, Deakin University

Cherie Russell is in the final year of her PhD candidature in Food Policy at Deakin University. She also holds a Bachelor of Food and Nutrition Sciences with Honours. Her research presents a case study of policy actions to reduce added sugar consumption, and the subsequent changes in non-nutritive sweetener use in the food supply, to demonstrate the limitations of reductionist policy paradigms. She is also a member of the Public Health Association of Australia’s Food and Nutrition Special Interest Group Executive and a co-founder of the advocacy organisation Healthy Food Systems Australia.

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Dr Jessica Bogard

Advanced Accredited Practicing Dietitian (AdvAPD) and Nutrition Systems Scientist, CSIRO Agriculture and Food

Jessica is a Nutrition Systems Scientist with CSIRO Agriculture and Food and Honorary Senior Fellow at the University of Queensland School of Public Health. Her research focuses on how agriculture and food systems can be leveraged to improve nutrition and health outcomes. Her recent work includes developing methods and tools to evaluate healthiness and sustainability of food environments in low and middle income countries.

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Mary-Anne Land

Senior Policy Officer, Public Health Association of Australia

Ms Mary-Anne has experience working at the national, regional and global level in the field of public health, with particular expertise in noncommunicable disease prevention and health governance. She has led public health policy development, advocacy strategies and worked closely with countries, global and multi-lateral partners to implement public health programs. Mary-Anne holds a Doctorate and Masters in Public Health

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Sarah Fraser-Chitticks

Events Officer, Public Health Association of Australia

Ms Sarah Fraser-Chitticks joined the PHAA Events Team mid-2021. Sarah completed a Certificate III and a Diploma in Event Management at The Canberra Institute of Technology in 2017. Sarah has a wide variety of event and association experience and is very passionate about event management.

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Jamie Evans

Events Officer, Public Health Association of Australia

Ms Jamie Evans joined the PHAA in 2019. She has over 10 years experience working as a Professional Conference Organiser in Sydney. Jamie has dedicated her career to customer service and client satisfaction. With a young family of her own, she is proud to be working on events which promote the health and well-being of all Australians.

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Mandy Winter

Events Officer, Public Health Association of Australia

Ms Mandy Winter joined the PHAA Events Team in early 2021. Mandy brings more than 20 years’ experience of professional conference organising, administration and stakeholder communication.  Mandy comes from a customer service and sales background with a large focus on building lasting relationships. Her strengths include her time management skills, attention to detail and her passion for delivering successful events.