Dick Copeman – Chair
Previously a medical practitioner working in Aboriginal health, general practice and palliative care, Dick’s interests in nutrition and public health lead him progressively into health policy, food policy, environmental activism and permaculture. Dick established the Eco-Consumer newsletter, based at the Qld Conservation Council in 1993 and was involved in campaigns against genetically engineered food, cotton farming on the Cooper and in the successful land clearing campaign of the mid 90s. In 1995-6, Dick was Project officer for the Fair Trade Forum, auspiced by the Australian Conservation Foundation and the Australian Council of Trade Unions. From 1994 till the present, Dick has been involved in helping establish and develop Northey Street City Farm in inner Brisbane, and in teaching permaculture there. Dick has been chair or convenor of many organisations, including Doctors’ Reform Society QLD, Healthy Cities QLD, Community Health Association QLD, QLD Food Alliance, Kelvin Grove State High School P & C, Northey Street City Farm and the Labor Environment Action Network, QLD.
Colin Stewart - Treasurer
Colin has a degree in Applied Science (Electronics) from Melbourne University. Colin has had various Engineering, Technical Sales and Management positions over the course of a 30+ year career, encompassing positions in the public service and private industry both in Australia and overseas. His last professional position was with Tait Electronics (Australia) Pty. Ltd., a radio communications company, where he spent 12 years on the Senior Management Team, as Engineering Manager responsible for Australia, then Australia and New Zealand and ultimately the Asia/Pacific Region for Projects, Technical and Customer Support. During this time he managed between approximately 6 and 35 staff and was responsible for contracts valued at up to $12M. Colin has been a self funded retiree since the end of 2010 and for the last few years has been volunteering with groups such as Greenpeace, where he is the coordinator of the Brisbane volunteer group, and Beyond Zero Emissions. Has also been involved in campaigns and activities with other environmental groups.
Ellie Bock - Secretary
As a freelance land use and land management planning consultant – predominately working in regional and remote northern Australia over the past decade – Ellie has extensive experience in facilitation, participatory planning, land tenure related matters and community-based cultural / natural resource management. She has assisted in the negotiation of a number of precedent-setting collaborative management arrangements for globally significant protected areas. Having a keen interest in environmental matters since the mid 1980s, Ellie has held diverse paid and unpaid roles for environmental NGOs in campaign strategy, policy development and governance, most recently in far north Queensland.
Ellie has been involved with the environment/conservation/climate movement in Queensland for 10 years first as a student volunteer and then as a campaigner. She has primarily worked on campaigns to do with coal mining in Queensland and has worked in regional Queensland as well as Brisbane. Ellie has served on a number of boards in the past 10 years including Friends of the Earth (secretary), Reverse Garbage (secretary), ASEN public fund, and the Environment Council of Central Queensland and works as an organiser for the Unions.
Ellen works as the Queensland Lead Organiser for Getup after three years at the Mackay Conservation Group, where she has been campaigning against the expansion of coal mines and ports. Mackay Conservation Group took the Federal Environment Minister to court against the approval of the Carmichael coal mine on grounds that the Federal Environment Minister, Greg Hunt, failed to properly consider the impact of the Carmichael mine on the Great Barrier Reef. She has been active on environment and social justice issues for over 20 years. Ellen has a background in law and worked for many years with refugees and asylum seekers in detention for the Refugee and Immigration Legal Centre in Melbourne.
Ted’s experience spans more than 40 years with conservation and community organisations including participating on boards as well as campaign experience. Ted has participated on a number of boards including: Chair of CCC in 1977, twenty years on QCC Board from 1978 and Chair in 1994, Vice President of Wildlife Preservation Society for fifteen years, Karawatha Forest Protection Society Board and Brisbane Region Environment Council (BREC) Board since 1997 to the present.Ted’s campaign experience includes being part of successful Veto Eastern Tollway Organisation from 1990-1995. Ted is currently involved in working with Logan Wildlife, Logan and Albert Conservation Association and No PRC. He has worked on Coastal Plans and Coastal Development Mapping since 1989, and in 2006 with WWF. Ted’s work with BREC, my current activities with affiliated groups include campaigning on: Mega development, Mega Roads/Rail, Land clearing, Unsustainability of Offsets and loss of Greenspace, Biodiversity Hotspots and Refugia, Koalas, Core Areas and Corridors/Pinch Points/ Green Fauna Infrastructure, some Law Reform, Town and Regional Planning with QCC’s planning campaign, rainforest mapping and, and Local Authority Governance are current issues. Some of these are being actioned at 3 levels of Government.
Gemma Plesman is the Queensland Campaign Manager with The Wilderness Society. Gemma has been working to protect the environment since she founded Girls Against Gas while studying at university to oppose coal seam gas mining in NSW. She has also been closely involved in work to protect the Great Barrier Reef through roles with the Mackay Conservation Group and the Australian Marine Conservation Society.