Our People

Creating Australia Ltd is managed by a Board of volunteers whose expertise includes arts practice, academia, local and state government, the non-profit sector and arts organisations.

Board of Directors

Paul Holton, Chair, (joined January 2016)

Paul is Director Development with East Gippsland Shire Council. His role encompasses strategic management of Statutory Land Use Planning, Economic Development, Capital Projects and Council Enterprises across the East Gippsland Shire. He has worked in Local Government for over 20 years in areas such as arts facilities administration, cultural development, leisure facilities and events management. Paul was part of the team that initiated the highly successful Wangaratta Festival of Jazz. He is a former member of the Australia Council’s Community Cultural Development Board.

Lindy Allen, Deputy Chair, (joined June 2014)

Lindy is a highly-experienced senior executive, currently operating Living-Proof Media, an independent consultancy to the arts offering services including documentation, evaluation, writing and editing for publication. Recent roles include immediate past Chief Executive Officer of Regional Arts Australia (2012-2013) and former Chief Executive Officer of Regional Arts Victoria (2004-2012). During 2012-2013, Lindy was Executive Producer for the Centenary of Canberra’s largest national community engagement program, One River, spanning four states and a territory.

Current board roles include Falls Creek Resort Management Board, national body Creating Australia, the Cultural Development Network and Lakes Entrance based Wurrinbeena. She is also Deputy Chair of the Narrandera-based arts organisation, the CAD Factory. She is a former Board member of Regional Arts Australia and the Australian Children’s Theatre Foundation. Panel roles have included Judge: Victorian Tourism Awards (2015), RAA’s RAD Fellowships (2015), Arts Victoria’s Vic Arts Grants Program (2014), Judge: Council for Humanities Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) Awards (2014), Judge: Australian Business Arts Foundation (AbaF) Awards (2009). Lindy has been an Australia Day Ambassador since 2010.

Professional qualifications include Bachelor of Arts (University of Melbourne), Graduate Diploma Arts Management (University of South Australia), Photojournalism major, Bachelor of Creative Arts, Latrobe Uni Bendigo and Graduate Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAICD).

Councillor Rod Fyffe, Treasurer (Representative of the Board of the Municipal Association of Victoria. Joined January 2016)
Rod Fyffe is the Deputy Mayor for Greater Bendigo City Council (2016-2017) and has served as a Councillor for Greater Bendigo since 1996. In this time he has served four terms as Mayor (2003/2004, 2004/2005, 2010/2011 and 2015/2016) and is the first person to serve as Deputy Mayor. In 2013 Cr Fyffe was awarded an Order of Australia in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for his services to Local Government. He is a member of the Board of the Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV) representing Rural North Central Victoria. He is also a member of the Insurance Committee, Chair of the Arts and Culture Committee and a member of the Professional Development Reference Group at MAV.  Cr. Fyffe is a Member of the Ministerial Advisory Council on Libraries, a Member of the State Library Public Libraries Advisory Committee and a member of the Australian Packaging Covenant Council.

John Smithies, Company Secretary (Joined March 2016)

John is an artist and experienced arts manager with a background of arts programming, research and policy development. He studied at arts schools in Australia and overseas. From 1992, John was Director of the State Film Centre of Victoria, initiating and leading it through its development to become the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) at Federation Square in Melbourne, opening in 2002.  ACMI was to lead the way as the newest and fifth form of cultural institution alongside the libraries, galleries, museums and performing arts centres. The policy development and advocacy required to build a new public cultural institution was a sound foundation for John’s ongoing leadership of Cultural Development Network since 2005. Key achievements at CDN have been to establish the internationally recognised research program and forming the National Local Government Cultural Forum, a partnership of the Commonwealth government and the Australian local government sector.

Dr Nicholas Hill, Board Director, (joined January 2016)
Nick Hill is a lecturer and arts manager. His qualifications include BA (Hons); PG DipM and MA. He completed his PhD at South Bank University, England, on – “The Folk and the People: Patronage and Promotion in the Tamasha of Maharashtra”. Previously he worked at South Bank University as Senior Lecturer in Arts Marketing and Course Director (Services Management program). His research interests include Arts & Patronage, South Asian Performing Arts (Folk – Popular – Traditional), Performing Arts Hybrids, Arts Marketing and Communications, Instrumental and Intrinsic Arts Benefits, Arts Ethnography, The lived experience and prism methodology. Nick currently works at International House, a residential college owned by the University of Melbourne.

Hanut Singh Dodd, Board Director, (joined January 2016)
Hanut is a highly experienced cultural, heritage and tourism manager with skills in specialised areas such as museum management, cultural and environmental tourism, event management, exhibition development, public program management, architectural conservation, moveable cultural heritage and collection management. Hanut has more than ten years of experience working as a freelance curator and architectural conservator and has also worked for the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service as Area Manager at the Hill End Historic Site, as Director of the National Wool Museum, for councils in Victoria including Cities of Melbourne, Port Phillip and Hume and as a Project Manager with the Alpine Resorts Coordinating Council. Hanut currently works for the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning in Victoria as a Manager of 4×4 Fire Fleet Reform, Policy and Integration.

Greg Box (joined January 2016)
Greg is currently the Manager of Arts Culture & Heritage at Yarra Ranges Council developing a number of cultural facilities. He has worked as an arts practitioner and administrator with many different communities from a diverse range of social and cultural backgrounds. Much of Greg’s work has focussed on building community partnerships and cultural development projects at Greater Dandenong and Yarra Ranges. In particular he has a strong background in creating public art in local government and helped establish SITE: RMIT Public Art within the school of art at RMIT.

Michelle Zemancheff, Board Director, (Joined March 2018)

Michelle Zemancheff is a cultural industry and local government professional with almost a decade’s experience, building on a former career in law.  Michelle’s formal qualifications include a Master of Arts (Arts Management) with Distinction (RMIT), with her dissertation having researched the nuances of measuring cultural value and social impact; subsequent to a Bachelor of Arts (Fine Art) with Distinction (RMIT), and an Advanced Diploma of Photography (PSC).  Michelle is currently the Coordinator of Arts and Cultural Development at Nillumbik Shire Council.  Her portfolio encompasses cultural planning, policy development and strategic direction.  She is also responsible for a spectrum of cultural development that ranges from creative industries, public art and community arts.

Sarah Catherine Firth, Board Director, (Joined June 2018)

Sarah is an award winning Melbourne based artist, writer, performer and creative entrepreneur. Her prolific body of work includes illustrations, comics, animations, creative strategy workbooks, community art projects, essays and thought pieces.

Since 2010, she has run a successful small business offering live illustration, animated communication videos, graphic recording and strategic visualisation services across industries locally and internationally. Working with clients such as Google, ACMI, The Rockefeller Foundation, CSIRO, PLAN International, University of Melbourne, KPMG, Environmental Justice Australia, PwC, along with numerous state and local government departments and councils.

Sarah exhibits, publishes and regularly seeks out artist residency and creative development opportunities. She has collaborated with the Arquetopia Foundation in Mexico, Krack!Studio in Yogyakarta, the Urban Nonurban project in Singapore, and the Comic Art Workshop in Indonesia.

Some of her notable creative achievements have been, in 2006 Sarah was named one of Australia’s top 25 artists aged 25 and under in the 25/25show by Art & Australia Magazine. In 2007 she received a commission and residency with Carriageworks, followed by a commission from Experimenta Media Art in 2010. In 2012 she was awarded the Talking Difference Fellowship at the Immigration Museum, and her animated documentary Face to Facewon The People’s Choice Award in the Australian Shorts section of the Human Rights Arts and Film Festival. In 2017 she had work in the Yogyakarta Biennale in Indonesia, the Lakes International Comic Festival in the UK and the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival. In 2018 she received a Frankie Magazine Good Stuff Award for an animated film and her comic collection Short Shortswas nominated for a Ledger Award.