Planning Panels Victoria: Panel Members
Planning Panels Victoria consists of the Chief Panel Member and six senior panel members. There are also approximately eighty sessional panel members. Individual panels are drawn from the seven full-time panel members and the pool of sessional panel members.
Full-time Panel Members
Chief Panel Member - Kathy Mitchell
Kathy Mitchell was appointed as Chief Panel Member with Planning Panels Victoria, for the Victorian government in June 2004. Prior to this appointment, Kathy was a full time Senior Panel Member with Planning Panels Victoria since its inception in 1996, and an occasional Sessional Member with the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) from 1999 to 2004.
Kathy is the immediate past President (2004 – 2011) and a Fellow of the Victoria Planning and Environmental Law Association (VPELA), and has been a State Judge for the Urban Development Industry Association - Victorian Chapter (UDIA) Awards of Excellence since 2003.
Kathy has a Bachelor of Arts in Planning, a Graduate Diploma in Urban Sociology and a Master of Arts in Planning (Research). She has previously worked in the private sector, local government, and as an academic.
Trevor McCullough - Senior Panel Member
Trevor McCullough has qualifications in Civil Engineering, Planning and Environment and Social Planning and has over 30 years experience in Victorian state and local government.
In former roles he worked as Director of Planning, Engineering Services and Community Services at Ballarat, Hobsons Bay and Kingston City Councils for a total of 15 years. He was also a traffic engineer and transport planner at VicRoads, and project manager and operations manager at the Public Transport Corporation. He is a former board member of Southern Family Life youth and family services agency.
Trevor is a Senior Panel Member at Planning Panels Victoria and coordinates the Transport and Infrastructure Reference Group.
Cathie McRobert – Senior Panel Member
She has chaired a wide range of major panels, advisory committees and Environmental Effects Statements inquiries relating to statewide social and environmental policy reviews, comprehensive planning scheme reviews, structure plans, major infrastructure developments, and large scale urban redevelopments.
Jenny Moles – Senior Panel Member
Jenny Moles has qualifications in planning, arts and social science. She has had diverse planning experience over a 30 year period with Victorian government agencies and private consultants, in strategic planning, policy development, heritage and natural conservation, retail planning and assessment of development applications.
Jenny was a Member of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal for 12 years and subsequently worked at Maddocks Lawyers for 3 years. She is the author of the Department’s guide to ‘Writing Planning Permits’. She lectures in planning law at Monash University.
Jenny Moles has been a Sessional Member of Planning Panels Victoria since 1989. She has sat on panels and advisory committees involving a range of issues including conservation of the Barwon Sewer Aqueduct and other heritage places, conservation of coastal landscapes, a review of the heritage provisions of planning schemes, the establishment of major on-shore gas pumping facilities, inland marina developments, major wind farms, activity centres and freeway projects.
Jenny is a former State President of the Planning Institute of Australia and has been awarded fellowships for her work in planning by both the Royal Australian Planning Institute and the Victorian Planning and Environmental Law Association.
Lester Townsend - Senior Panel Member
Lester was appointed as a Senior Panel Member with Planning Panels Victoria in October 2005, and has considerable experience in strategic and statutory planning, and project implementation. He has qualifications in town planning and sociology, holding a Bachelor of Town and Regional Planning (University of Melbourne) and Graduate Diploma of Sociology (LaTrobe University).
Before becoming a Senior Panel Member, Lester was a sessional member since 1997. Additionally, he has provided strategic and statutory planning advice for a range of local and state government organisations and private companies. He has a particular interest in integrated planning and has been involved in a number of transport and urban design projects.
Lester has expertise in plain English communication and drafting. He is a Fellow of VPELA and has previously served on its Board. He was also the former President of the Australia Institute of Urban Studies.
Nick Wimbush - Senior Panel Member
Nick holds qualifications in environmental science and public policy and is undertaking post graduate studies in Law. He has over 20 years experience in a variety of State and Local Government roles in Western Australia and Victoria including managing environmental impact assessment of major road projects with the West Australian Environment Protection Authority and advising the Victorian government in a senior role on coastal planning and development.
He has extensive experience in the private sector in Western Australia, Indonesia and Victoria with consulting firms after founding and running his own environmental consultancy from 2002-2006 specialising in integrated coastal zone management. Since 2006 he has been a full time Senior Panel Member with Planning Panels Victoria responsible for chairing environment effects inquiries, panels and advisory committees.
Nick was a sessional lecturer at postgraduate level in natural resource management at RMIT University in Melbourne from 2002-2006. He is a member of the Victorian Planning and Environmental Law Association, the Environment Institute of Australia and New Zealand and the National Environmental Law Association.
Sessional Panel Members
Sessional panel members provide a source of expertise on planning, architecture, urban design, engineering, environment and social planning. They are appointed to a panel as required depending upon the nature and complexity of the proposal being considered. Membership of the list of sessional panel members is reviewed on a regular basis.
The full-time panel members are supplemented by the following sessional panel members:
The Panel Members are assisted by the following support staff:
- Jessica Cutting (Senior Project Manager)
- Greta Grivas (Senior Project Officer)
- Harry Matheas (Assistant Director)
- Adrian Williams (Business Manager)
- Sharon Walker (Finance Manager and Executive Assistant to the Chief Panel Member)
- Laura Agius (Panel Coordinator)