Our team

We create multi‐disciplinary teams to meet the needs of each specific project and client group. Our core team members are from diverse personal and professional backgrounds.

Hover over a picture to see the info for that team member:

Jennifer Beale

Jennifer Beale is a Gamillaroi woman who has worked extensively in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities in NSW and interstate, bringing a community development focus to her work. She has extensive experience in Aboriginal health and community adult education in both remote and urban communities. For the past 20 years Jennifer has lived and worked in the Darug Aboriginal community in Western Sydney. She played the primary role in establishing Butucarbin Aboriginal Corporation, which delivers innovative and successful skill development programs to the Mt Druitt community, and is currently its Executive Officer.

Jennifer is a skilled interviewer, facilitator and adult educator, with experience in community consultation and development of guidelines and service directories. She is experienced in social research, co‐ordinating recruitment and set‐ups for qualitative research, moderating focus groups and conducting interviews. Jennifer worked with Kate Sullivan on an extensive focus group project funded by the Department of Employment and Workplace Relations (DEWR), on the experiences of unemployed and recently employed Aboriginal people with the Job Network, and was part of the research team for the National Indigenous Palliative Care Needs Study and the evaluation of the Indigenous Youth Employment Consultants program for DEWR.

Dr Claire Colyer

Claire’s professional background was originally in broadcast journalism. Since leaving the Australian Broadcasting Corporation in 1992, Claire has worked extensively with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and organisations in cross‐cultural settings, including local and community‐based organisations in Central Australia, the Central Land Council in the Northern Territory, and a national Commonwealth statutory authority based in Adelaide.

Claire began working as a consultant in 2000. After her return to Sydney in 2001 she also worked part‐time with The Fred Hollows Foundation in Indigenous programs policy and research. She has a range of professional consultancy skills including qualitative research, research and evaluation projects, community liaison and consultation, and conducting workshops and focus groups. She also has specialist skills in interviewing, writing, editing and production of all kinds of written materials, public relations, organising events, media production (print and radio) and substantial experience in cross‐cultural communication. Claire undertook the major part of the field research and writing of the National Indigenous Palliative Care magazine, and conducted field work in the Northern Territory and South Australia for several KSA evaluation projects, including Fee For Service arrangements for the Job Network in remote NT communities and the Indigenous Youth Employment Consultants project for DEWR, and the Youth Led Futures evaluation for the Foundation for Young Australians.

Claire recently completed doctoral research which explored the work of a major national not‐for‐profit organisation in capacity‐building, community development and Indigenous service delivery in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. (see abstract here).

Raymond (Jack) Gibson

Jack is a Nyampa/Ngunnawal man who has worked in a professional capacity in the non‐profit, public and private sectors for approximately 20 years. His strengths lie in organisational analysis and design, project management, training and development, community development and group facilitation. Jack’s educational background includes tertiary qualifications in teaching and adult education and a Master’s degree in community management.

Jack has held high level management positions in government organisations and community‐based organisations, has been a community worker in community adult education, and has served on boards of a number of community‐based organisation. In addition, he held Ministerial positions on the Sydney Regional Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Commission (ATSIC) Council, the statutory body that represented Aboriginal people between 1989‐2004, and on the Sydney West Area Health Service (SWAHS) Area Health Advisory Council (AHAC). Jack also holds a voluntary position on the Metro West Regional Aboriginal Capacity Building Advisory Group (ACBAG), which advises the NSW Department of Family and Community Services on issues impacting on Aboriginal organisations’ capacity to provide services to Aboriginal people.

Past projects for Kate Sullivan & Associates have included working on the development of the Aboriginal Carers Kit, and co‐facilitation of primary health care planning in the Queensland Central Highlands region for the Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing, and a national study for the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Luana Johnston

Luana is a Director of Bushwork Consultants, which works primarily with Indigenous client groups and undertakes community development projects, procedural development for community controlled organisations, organisational reviews and service planning. Her skills and experience include capacity building and skills transfer to Indigenous staff/organisations, mentoring, governance training, support for failing organisations, field research, service planning, monitoring and evaluation.

Luana has lived and worked with Aboriginal communities in NSW, Queensland and Western Australia and has worked extensively in community and organisational development. She has also conducted fieldwork on several national projects and was a vital part of the team that worked on the Mookai Rosie project in Cairns, undertaking the review component and working with staff to develop operational manuals and financial control systems. She undertook much of the field work for the National Indigenous Palliative Care Needs study, the evaluation of The Fred Hollows Foundation Nyirranggulung Nutrition Strategy and Stores program in East Katherine, the evaluation of the Indigenous Youth Employment Consultants (IYEC) program for DEWR and the review of the Youth Led Futures Program for the Foundation for Young Australians.

Recently Luana has worked for the East Kimberley Community Development Employment Program (EKCDEP) which delivers a range of Indigenous‐specific training and community development programs across the East Kimberley. Luana assisted participants to gain proof of identification in order to meet Centrelink requirements. , provided mentoring and support to participants in a Women’s Art Project and Child Care Training Course and provided administrative support to the EKCDEP office in Warmun Community. Her most recent work has been for the Red Cross RespectED program building community capacity and empowering community members to address issues impacting on community safety in Ceduna SA, and in mentoring an Aboriginal staff member to take over this role.

Ross Johnston

Ross Johnston is a Director of Bushwork Consultants (see above). His professional skills include project management, research, community development advice, program monitoring and impact assessment, program planning, capacity building and skills transfer to Indigenous staff, and technical reporting. Ross holds an Australian Pilots License.

Ross has been responsible for designing Aboriginal ranger programs, has been a program director and ministerial advisor in the Land Branch of the Qld Department of Aboriginal and Islander Affairs, and a senior land advisor in East Timor for UNTAET. Ross has been a consultant to the Cape York Land Council, working with Jabalbina Yalanji Aboriginal Corporation, has advised Bush Heritage Australia on Indigenous Land Management Partnerships and consulted to AIATSIS and the Djabugay Tribal Aboriginal Corporation to review progress on native title land use aspirations in the Barron Gorge National Park, in Far North Queensland.

Ross has held senior management roles in organisations such as Australian Red Cross and The Fred Hollows Foundation, working in Australia and overseas. Ross was an expert member of the Ministerial Advisory Committee – Community Development Employment Programs (appointed by the Australian Federal Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs) 2009‐2011, and has recently completed a term as a Senior Strategic Advisor to the Indigenous Development Effectiveness Initiative (FaHCSIA/ World Vison) Project.

Dr Kate Sullivan

Kate Sullivan is the Executive Director of Kate Sullivan and Associates Pty Ltd. and is Project Director for all KSA projects. Kate is a strategic analyst and project facilitator with over 25 years’ experience in research, project management, evaluation and organisational change. Her background includes executive level management in the public sector, strategic planning in complex environments, change management, evaluation and performance improvement, market research and organisational and community strengthening. Kate has been successfully managing her own consultancy for 20 years. Prior to consulting, Kate worked for the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service and has over 15 years experience in cultural resource management. She has worked extensively with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people since 1974.

Kate has considerable experience in public policy and management contexts around Australia having undertaken several national research projects in a number of fields including health and employment. Much of Kate’s work has involved organisational review and strategic business planning undertaken with the Boards of management of various of organisations. Good governance coaching is usually an important element of this work.

Kate holds a BA (Hons) in Anthropology from the University of Sydney and a Master of Business Administration from the Australian Graduate School of Management (UNSW), where she was awarded the Institute of Management Consultants prize for best performance in Organisational Behaviour. Kate has a PhD in anthropology for research into Indigenous relations with the criminal justice system in NSW. Kate’s thesis can be accessed at http://hdl.handle.net/1885/9847 and see summary report here.

Kate plays the major role in the consulting team, from initial review and analysis, design and conduct of research and consultation, and preparation of the final reports.

Robbie Corrie

Robbie Corrie is a Traditional Owner from Cape York Peninsula. His heritage includes Wuthathi from the East Coast and Yupagathi from the West coast of Cape York Peninsula. Robert has experience as a Qualitative Research Project Manager at Colmar Brunton’s National Social Research department. His work has focussed on recruitment of Indigenous community people in Indigenous research and evaluation. He has investigated sensitive issues such as unemployment, Indigenous welfare, family assistance, drug/ substance abuse and Indigenous Remote Service Delivery. Robert has worked in the Welfare Reform Trial communities of Cape York and before that for the Cape York Health Council.

Robbie has worked on several FaHCSIA funded projects including;

  • Mornington Island Restorative Justice Research Study
  • Remote Service Delivery Community Research Study
  • Cape York Welfare Reform Social Change Survey
  • Economic Activities and Jobs Study Cape York Welfare Reform Sites
  • Evaluation of the AFL Remote Regional Development Program Wadeye for (
  • Longitudinal Study of Indigenous Children.

Robbie in now the founder and Director of Side by Side Consulting Pty Ltd, http://www.sidebysideconsulting.com.au/HOME.3.0.html, an Indigenous-owned and operated research company that has considerable expertise in developing questionnaires for campaign evaluations, designing surveys that are easy to administer by local Indigenous researchers and conducting research with Indigenous people living in remote communities across Australia.

Robert has a wealth of experience in engaging and conducting research with Indigenous communities and peoples in Cape York Peninsula, Western Australia and the Northern Territory. With John Young (Colmar Brunton), Robert won the Highly Commended Award category for Innovation in Methodology at the RICA Research Effectiveness Awards 2012 for his work with community members in Wadeye (NT) in relation to an AFL program designed to keep young people out of trouble. This project also involved qualitative interviews with victims of crime. Robert has an Associate Diploma from Curtin University in Community Development and Management.