Five New Appointments To Victorian Education Board

07 September 2023

The Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority (VRQA) board has welcomed five new people to its board, composed of a broad range of leaders from across education focused professions.

Minister for Education Natalie Hutchins today announced the new board, made up of five returning members and five new members.

Tony Nippard, Judy Rose PSM, Julie Caldecott, Fran Reddan and Penny Hutchinson, the five existing board member appointments, will continue to bring their insights and experience from the industry.

Four new members being welcomed to the VRQA board will commence on 17 October Belinda Tynan, Mark Cameron, Geraldine Atkinson, Neil Pharaoh, with Tri Nguyen starting on 1 November.

As President of Victorian Aboriginal Education Association Incorporated (VAEAI) and former co-chair of the First Peoples’ Assembly of Aunty Geraldine Atkinson has played a pivotal role over the past 40 years in establishing transformational outcomes for Indigenous Victorians through training policy reform.

Dr Belinda Tynan is an experienced senior executive across school, vocational and higher education. Her previous experience includes Provost and Deputy Vice Chancellor Education, Australian Catholic University and Deputy Vice Chancellor, Education and Vice President RMIT University.

Mr Mark Cameron has extensive experience promoting trade qualifications and apprenticeships as an accredited trainer and as an employer. Mr Cameron is also a non-executive Director of Sparkways, a leading independent social enterprise focused on children and young people delivering youth services and early education and care.

Mr Neil Pharaoh is a current board director of Sustainability Victoria and member of its Risk, Audit and Finance Committee. Mr Pharaoh has been a strong contributor to social policy and advocacy campaigns, as well as national and international philanthropic and development work in child welfare, education, refugee, and LGBTIQ+ issues.

Mr Tri Nguyen was the first Vietnamese law graduate of the University of South Australia and co-established the Indigenous Education Foundation Program He is a Founding Board Member at Vietnamese Australian Benevolent Foundation, Company Secretary at Incolink, and General Counsel at Indigenous Land and Sea Corporation.

The VRQA undertook a number of activities to attract candidates who are culturally and linguistically diverse, young, LGBTIQ+ individuals, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, and people living in rural and regional communities.

The Andrews Labor Government would also like to thank members Stephen Elder OAM and Jim Williamson for their long-standing service and contributions, as they depart the VRQA Board.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Education Natalie Hutchins

“Both returning and new members of the board bring unique and diverse skills, experience and perspective – and I’m confident they will do a wonderful job assisting the VRQA ensuring the quality of education and training in Victoria.

“All board members are highly regarded members of the community and have been carefully selected to represent people from all walks of life – because making Victoria the Education State only happens when we have diverse representation.”

Attributable to Acting Minister for Training and Skills Steve Dimopoulos

"We have appointed five new board members whose perspectives and experiences will complement those of our existing members - positively shaping the future of training and higher education in Victoria for generations to come."

Quote attributable to Minister for Trade and Investment Tim Pallas

"The VRQA board represents the full spectrum of the education, skills and training sectors and this is vital to help students, teachers and school leaders maximise their potential."

Reviewed 07 September 2023

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