I am a switched on, enthusiastic planner with over a decade of experience in parks, recreation, environmental and coastal planning and development, statutory assessment and strategic policy development.
I recently completed the exciting task of guiding development of the City of Vancouver’s Parks and Recreation Services Master Plan, working alongside the fantastic team at Design Workshop, Modus, Lees and Associates, HCMA, Urban Design 4 Health and ETM Associates, Dr Debra Cohen, the City and Park Board colleagues.
Over two years we set about to change the course of parks and recreation delivery from “putting out fires” to a deliberate focus on equity, inclusion and access. Through taking a landscape approach, using some really interesting data and mapping analysis methods and weaving in a range of important topics (from water quality and urban forestry, to sport) the completed master plan documents presents a flexible yet powerful response to the challenge.
- Project and people management is my forte. I’m a problem solver, facilitator and negotiator; working with people keeps me full of energy.
- I believe that good policy can bring about transformation.
- I’m a calm, confident, vibrant and engaging public speaker.
- I have excellent systems thinking, idea generation, and communication skills
2004-2010: The University of Western Australia, Crawley, Western Australia. Bachelor of Science (Geography – Urban and Regional Planning & Botany – Ecology)
2010-2011: The University of Western Australia, Faculty of Arts, Crawley, Western Australia. Graduate Certificate in Arts (Economics and Social Sciences)
March 2021 – Present: Xyst Australia: Senior Consultant
Crafting parks, recreation, trails and urban forestry strategies that deliver results.
Coaching planners to strategise and thrive.
Advocating for exceptional data to guide outstanding decision making.
Speaker, facilitator, voice for magical parks and vivacious recreation for all.
November 2016 – February 2021: Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation (City of Vancouver): Planner II/Project Manager
Project Manager – Parks and Recreation Services Master Plan – VanPlay
• Managing a team of consultants, extensive technical advisory groups, and a broad staff team to prepare a parks and recreation services master plan under the guidance of 7 elected Park Board Commissioners.
• Developed a comprehensive strategic policy document with a 100 year vision, 25 year strategy and 10 year implementation plan. VanPlay, the completed master plan envisions parks and recreation services that offer equity, reduce barriers, and provide meaningful experiences for the public within the constraints of population growth, changing demographics and increasing land/development costs.
• Supported a team of subject matter experts with strategic advice, getting them the resources they need, asking questions and leveraging their efforts.
• Developed strong relationships based on trust and following through on promises.
• Extensive community and stakeholder engagement, inventory, mapping and analysis, policy writing, event coordination, logistics, and ongoing presentation and reporting.
• Applied sound judgment in a diverse range of difficult situations in response to every shifting timelines, and new challenges, in a high profile and politically charged environment.
• Effective and quick risk assessment and judgment to measure potential community, political and financial consequences of decisions, policy directions, projects and emerging issues.
• Found innovative policy solutions and activated “quick wins” to make an immediate difference to a system under intense stress.
• Research to demonstrate the value and impact of parks and recreation on community health, wellbeing, physical activity levels and personal resilience.
July 2016 – November 2017: Western Australian Department of Parks and Wildlife – Environmental (Statutory Planning) Officer – Rivers and Estuaries Division
Permit, development and subdivision application assessment, policy/strategic plan development and review, technical assessment of urban water management plans and other strategic water quality management plans to protect the water quality in the Swan and Canning River system and the social and amenity values of the Parks and Recreation Reserve encompassing them.
February 2015 – July 2016: ParklandWA – Project Manager
A collaboration between the Department of Sport and Recreation WA & the Planning Institute of Australia, ParklandWA drives policy development, advocacy and education for the better planning and design of public open space in Western Australia.
One year project to improve provision of public open space (parks) through capacity building, informing policy development, community/industry engagement and advocacy. Facilitate implementation of the State Public Parkland Strategy, policy/guidelines advice and development, advocacy for improved public parkland and to broaden both community and industry understanding about the contribution of public parkland to the various key agendas (e.g. environment, economy, health, safety, and culture)
September 2012 – February 2015: Department of Planning – Senior Planning Officer
Duties: Project lead – Public Parklands/Public Open Space for the review of Liveable Neighbourhoods, and policy coordination and development for documents relevant to the use and management of coastal areas throughout the state, provide technical advice on the implementation of State Coastal Planning Policy (SPP 2.6).
March 2011 – September 2012: The Swan River Trust – Statutory Planning Officer
Duties: Permit, development and subdivision application assessment, policy/strategic plan development and review, community consultation, provide technical advice and assistance to community groups undertaking on ground works in the river park, review of strategic documents (precinct planning, structure plans, planning scheme/MRS amendments, strategic plans, outline development plans etc.).
May 2009 – March 2011: The Shire of Kalamunda – Environmental Planner Dec 2007 – May 2009: The Shire of Kalamunda – Land and Property Officer
September, 2020 – World Urban Parks Congress, Albania – “VanPlay – Vancouver’s New Plan for Equity” (presentation video)
October, 2020 – WRLDCTY – “Open Space for Everyone” alongside Kurt Culbertson and Tony Moore
May, 2019 – Park People – Heart of the City Conference, Montreal – “Equity Tools for Better Park Resource Delivery”
May, 2018 – International Making Cities Liveable Conference, Ottawa – VanPlay Re-imagine the Future of Parks and Recreation
April, 2018 – British Columbia Recreation and Parks Association Symposium – VanPlay Re-imagine the Future of Parks and Recreation
June, 2016 – Planning Institute of Australia Regional Conference Bunbury – Public Open Space Strategy Guide for Local Governments
Nov, 2015 – 202020 Vision Urban Forest Masterclass, Perth: How to Grow an Urban Forest – Public Parklands Planning and Design
May, 2015 – Planning Institute of Australia Regional Conference Broome – Public Open Space SWOT Workshop
May, 2015 – Planning Institute of Australia National Congress Melbourne – Public Parkland Planning and Design Guide
2012: The University of Western Australia – UWA Extension, Project Management Institute. Fundamentals of Supervision and Management
September 2015: The Project for Public Spaces – New York City. Placemaking: Making it Happen.
April 2016: The Planning Institute of Australia – Perth, Western Australia. Planning Engagement Tools and Techniques
Dec, 2017 – City of Vancouver & IAP2 – Effective Group Facilitation
Sept, 2017- Insights Discovery – Self Awareness, Relationships and Communication
May, 2018 – British Columbia Institute of Technology, Negotiation Skills
Jan, 2020 – City of Vancouver – Resilience Leadership
Example Project Experience
April 2016: Planning Institute of Australia (WA) submission to the Department of Premier and Cabinet on the Green Growth Plan for Perth and Peel @ 3.5 Million
February 2016: Contributor for The Overflow – Irrigation Australia Industry Magazine “Vibrant Activation! An Introduction to Space Activation and Placemaking”
January 2016: Public Open Space Strategy Guide for Local Governments, Parkland WAMarch 2016: Guest Lecturer Edith Cowan University, Public open space planning and the future of parks planning in Western Australia
December 2015: Public Open Space Planning for Sport and Recreation in the Regions – workshop with Department of Sport and Recreation Regional Managers
November 2015: Speaker 202020 Vision Urban Forest Masterclass: How to grow an Urban Forest
November 2015: Contributor for The Overflow – Irrigation Australia Industry Magazine “Bringing Parks to Life: Current Projects in the World of Strategic Planning for Public Open Space in Western Australia”
August 2015: Contributor for The Overflow – Irrigation Australia Industry Magazine “Bringing Parks to Life: Development of Public Open Space”
March 2015 – July 2016: Project Manager – Green Space Alliance
February 2015 – July 2016: Working Group – Healthy Active By Design Checklist, Heart Foundation Western Australia
February 2015 – Present: Technical Adviser – Liveable Neighbourhoods 2015, Department of Planning WA
August 2013 – February 2015: Liveable Neighbourhoods Review, Public Parklands project lead
September 2012 – Guest Lecturer Edith Cowan University, Water Sensitive Urban Design and Statutory Planning for the Swan and Canning Rivers
September 2012 – Review of Planning Bulletin 67 and 87, Guidelines for Wind Farm Development and High Pressure Gas Pipelines
April 2011 – September 2012: Town of Bassendean & Swan River Trust, Precinct Plan (for riverside areas of the Town of Bassendean)
June 2011 – December 2011: Swan River Trust, Review of standard conditions
March 2009 –February 2011: Shire of Kalamunda, Woodlupine Living Stream, Public Open Space Development – Project Coordinator