2018-19 PA Directors and Support Teams

Meet the directors and support teams

Meet the directors of Permaculture Australia elected at the May 2018 Annual General Meeting:

  • Virginia Solomon — Chair — Education liaison — VIC
  • Ronnie Martin — Treasurer — Permafund liaison — QLD
  • Dylan Graves — Fundraising and Supporters liaison — QLD
  • Keri Chiveralls — SA
  • Wendy Marchment — Secretary — Communications liaison - VIC
  • Cally Brennan — ACT

Virginia Solomon (Chair) — Victoria VirginiaSolomon

Virginia has been involved with Permaculture since the early 1990s. Since 2003 she has been working with many others on the development of Accredited Permaculture Training (APT) and she comes to the Board at a time when APT is coming of age. She has worked as a teacher of Permaculture Design Courses (PDC), and of most levels of APT including 5 years of Certificate I to Year 9's at Eltham College and another 4 delivering Diploma there. She has managed and facilitated many courses and programs over the years and has been involved in the course writing of APT at each of the 5-yearly reviews, culminating last year in the endorsement of 66 unique permaculture units as part of the Agriculture, Horticulture and Conservation & Land Management (AHC) Training Package. Virginia is a founding member of the Permaculture Educators' Guild and a passionate advocate for quality education in permaculture in all its forms.

She has served on the Board once before, has been President of Permaculture Melbourne (now Permaculture Victoria) and Convened Australiasian Permaculture Convergence 8 (APC8) in 2005. She has worked with others, notably Robin Clayfield, in the training of teachers for APT and she brings to the Board her skills in strategic planning and facilitation.

Virginia recently retired in order to focus on mentoring and supporting others, and to enjoy her grandson and her garden. She lives in NE Melbourne (Eltham) with her husband, has 3 grown up children and a grandson, and has a large, productive garden and a rambling friendly house where visitors and guests are always welcome. She is a patchworker, a cheesemaker, an eco-dying enthusiast, a shoemaker (only for herself) and a dressmaker.


Ronni Martin (Treasurer) — Queensland

Ronni Martin has been involved in Permaculture since completing her PDC in 1984. She founded Edible Landscapes Nursery and Food Forest Nursery in Brisbane as well as designing many suburban permaculture's. Ronni currently works as the Education and Support Team Manager at Northey Street City Farm. Ronni previously worked in community campaigning and fundraising for Oxfam Australia, as well as various community development positions with small NGO's.

She has been involved in, and served on the Boards of, community economic development initiatives such as an enterprise incubator, a housing co-operative and an ethical investment fund. She is especially interested in organisational development - creating well-functioning structures to support the growth of permaculture and sustainable development.


Dylan Graves — Queensland

Dylan has been fully immersed in Permaculture since 2011 and has implemented systems in the Tropics and Cool Temperate. He tries to keep up to date with Permaculture worldwide as an avid listener of podcasts, collector of videos, reader of related books, and peruser of other online resources. The practical experience at Sugarloaf in implementing systems on the ground - growing soil & food, building, animal systems, water, solar, etc. keeps him busy most days.

Dylan is a Permaculture educator and committed sharer of Permaculture in action through articles, video, blog, presentations, social media, etc. He is motivated to back the Permaculture movement in any way possible. Passionate about the Permaculture Ethics and Principles and localising Permaculture whenever possible, he is the founder and organiser of Stanthorpe Permaculture Group since 2014.

For more information: sugarloafpermaculture.net/

Keri Chiveralls — South Australia

Keri ChiverallsDr Keri Chiveralls is Head of Program and Discipline Leader of Permaculture Design at CQUniversity. She is also a cultural anthropologist with an interest in environmental anthropology, social movement studies and theories of social change. Most recently, she has co-edited the book 'Subverting Consumerism: Reuse in an Accelerated World' with Professor Robert Crocker from UniSA, currently in press with Routledge as part of their Antimonies series.

Previously she worked at UniSA, where she was engaged on a number of different projects looking at social and cultural aspects associated with 'sustainability' in construction, including conducting fieldwork in the permaculture and 'natural'/alternative building movements, and lecturing in 'sustainable development: a global perspective' and 'social and community planning'.

After returning from participation in the Dialogue Days for the drafting of the Sustainable Development Goals at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in 2012, Keri became a member of Transition Adelaide Hills, and a passionate advocate for permaculture and transition towards sustainability and beyond. She has relished the challenge of applying her background in cultural anthropology and sustainability to the task of developing, co-ordinating and delivering one of the world's first tertiary level permaculture programs at CQUniversity.

Dr. Chiveralls is a member of the International Permaculture Convergence Council and works closely with Permaculture South Australia. She is especially interested in permaculture education and working with Permaculture Australia to chart new pathways in this area as well as strengthening and connecting existing pathways.

Wendy Marchment — Secretary — VictoriaWendy headshot

My permaculture journey started in the early 1990s whilst living in Adelaide. Shortly thereafter I joined Permaculture SA, moved to suburbia with a young family, and set about establishing a permaculture garden and doing a passive solar renovation. Moving to Queensland in 2005, I finally did my PDC plus Cert III Permaculture at Northey Street City Farm, where I volunteered and later became PDC Coordinator and the Education Coordinator. Really enjoyed teaching PDCs, workshops and APT but circumstances took me back to the university sector in late 2011 as the Manager, Institutional Research position at Deakin University's Geelong Waterfront campus. I was the inaugural Convenor of Permaculture Geelong from 2014-16 and organised/taught part of the 2015 Geelong PDC.

After a 30 year career across 7 universities, and on the committees of various organisations, I have experience in many aspects governance and compliance. In addition to the above, my qualifications include a BSc, MBA and Cert IV TAA.

Cally Brennan — Australian Capital Territory

Cally's photoDr Cally Brennan has been involved with permaculture since 2009. Cally manages a small permaculture business in the ACT; Canberra Permaculture Design and Education, which offers a range of garden advice and design services, based on permaculture ethics, techniques and principles. She has presented numerous talks and workshops on permaculture and sustainable gardening.

Cally was part of the organising committee that put together Australasian Permaculture Convergence 14 (APC14) in Canberra in April 2018. Her role included financial modelling for the event, coordinating all of the bookings, and managing the relationship with the venue.

Previously she coordinated PermablitzACT, a group that undertakes 'backyard blitzes' for its members, to convert suburban blocks into productive edible gardens, using permaculture design principles.

Cally also has a long background in the public sector working on energy and climate change policy and research. She also has a PhD from the University of Melbourne in a field relating to anthropology, music and connection to culture and place. She lives in Canberra with her partner and their 6 year old daughter together with their two dogs and a rather greedy resident possum. She loves working in their productive garden and paints pictures in her spare time.


Education (formerly APT) Team

Team members include:

  • Terry Avery
  • Sue Brunskill
  • Chris Carroll — Convenor
  • Keri Chiveralls
  • Bronwyn Elliott
  • Robyn Francis
  • Pamela Gurner-Hall
  • Beck Lowe
  • Ross Mars
  • Lorna Pettifer
  • Taj Scicluna
  • Virginia Solomon — Board of Directors liaison
  • Wendy Marchment

Contact: [email protected]

Permafund Team

The Permafund (Permaculture International Public Fund) is managed by a dedicated committee of Permaculture Australia member volunteers from around the country. The teams main function is to manage the grants process and promote Permafund to the wider permaculture community and beyond.

Team members include:

  • John Champagne
  • Bruce Zell
  • John McKenzie
  • Chris Carroll
  • Alexia Martinez
  • Jed Walker
  • Miles Durand
  • Ronnie Martin — Board of Directors liaison
  • Kym Blechynden

Contact: [email protected]

Fundraising and Supporters Team

Team members include:

  • Dylan Graves — Board of Directors liaison
  • Christine Carroll
  • Virginia Solomon

Contact: [email protected]

Finance Team

Team members include:

  • Boyd Attewell — Accountant
  • Ronni Martin — Treasurer, Board of Directors liaison
  • Cally Brennan

If you would like to volunteer with Permaculture Australia, please email: [email protected]