B4 Leaders are influential individuals or Organisational representatives from diverse backgrounds, who are appointed as Leaders by the Minister for Education, Children and Youth
Leaders raise awareness of the importance of the early years, especially the First 1000 Days and undertake an annual Action Plan against the B4 goals and objectives.
As part of the governments “It Takes a Tasmanian Village: Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy”, 2021, membership of the B4 Leaders Group covers the broad nature of the wellbeing framework domains as well as the early childhood education and care sector.
The B4 Leaders group also has three State Government representatives, currently Mellissa Gray, Deputy Secretary, Community Partnerships and Priorities Division, Department of Premier and Cabinet, Suzanne Purdon, Principal Leader – Early Years Partnerships and Projects and Nicole Kinghorn, A/Statewide Nursing Director, Child Health and Parenting Service, Tasmanian Health Service.
- Read more about Ros
Ros has worked in, and been a strong advocate for, the early childhood education and care sector for more than 30 years, in roles including educator, teacher, long day care centre director and public servant.
For the past 23 years Ros has worked for Lady Gowrie Tasmania, a not for profit community based organisation that provides a range of services to children, families and early childhood and allied professionals. Her current role is Chief Executive Officer.
Ros holds an early childhood degree as well as qualifications in business management. In 2009 she was awarded the Tasmanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (TCCI) Corporate Professional of the Year. She serves on many committees and groups at a local level as well as a member of the Australian Government Ministerial Advisory Committee and the Australian Children’s Quality Authority Review Panel. In 2016 she was inducted into the Tasmanian Honour Roll for Women for services to the community particularly early childhood.
Ros has been a member of Early Childhood Australia for over 30 years and a member of the National Board for 16 years. She has served in the roles as Board Director, National Treasurer, Deputy National President and is now privileged to be in the position of National President.
- Read more about Lea
Lea holds significant experience and expertise across both the early years and the business sector. She for many years managed a successful multi-site early years child care service model, and operated a consulting service operating across Tasmania, NSW, and WA.
Lea has lived, worked and raised a family in Tasmania and has an extensive network of connections and relationships. Lea is well known and acknowledged for her commitment to children and their families in the early years with a strong social justice ethos aligned to the aspirations and values of B4. In additional Lea has an ongoing commitment to lifelong learning and is currently undertaking a PhD through the University of Tasmania researching the challenge of impulsive behaviours in children under the supervision of senior members of the Philosophy Department of Tasmania and the Florey Institute in Melbourne.
- Read more about Di
Di is a long term academic and consultant in early childhood education and care. For more than 35 years Di has coordinated courses and lectured in leadership, curriculum and child development at Queensland University of Technology, University of Tasmania, James Cook and Torrens Universities. Di’s academic role has taken her to China, Singapore and Papua New Guinea where she has shared current theory and practice with teachers and administrators. As a consultant Di worked with the Queensland and South Australian Governments and facilitated numerous professional learning experiences with early childhood practitioners in schools, long day and family day care settings, and outside school hours care. Di is on the organising committee of Early Childhood Educators Tasmania (North).
Di’s research has focused on leading and learning in children’s services and prioritises collaborative approaches. Her belief in the power of collective impact is incorporated into her role chairing the Northern Early Years Group Tasmania Inc. and as educational leader consultant to the Northern Children’s Network. For the past several years Di participated in a range of collaborative projects in the Tamar Valley region working to enhance the wellbeing of young children and their families. Di is an advocate for respecting “children’s voices” in decisions that affect them.
- Read more about Becky
Dr Becky Shelley
Becky has a strong interest and commitment to improving educational outcomes and life opportunities for children and young people in Tasmania, with twenty years’ experience working to enhance social outcomes in innovative, engaging and transformative ways. Education and participation have been key drivers of Becky’s work to foster an inclusive Tasmania.
Becky strives to connect and integrate policy, research and practice and is particularly interested ensuring research and policy is translated into effective and impactful change. Becky has a PhD in political science, and is currently the Deputy Director Aspirations and Attainment, The Peter Underwood Centre for Educational Attainment, at the University of Tasmania
Becky has experience in a number of different settings, including government, the community sector, and as a non-executive director. Becky has provided leadership to national and local initiatives focused on improving educational outcomes in the early years. Becky has two young children and finds it hard to believe that their early years are now behind them.
- Read more about Bronwyn
Bronwyn is a passionate worker within the early year’s sector. Bronwyn is currently the Early Learning Consultant, for Goodstart Early Learning. Her experience and expertise surround the education and care of children aged birth to five years, and the training and professional development of those who work within the sector. Bronwyn’s experiences as a teacher, centre manager, trainer and consultant combine in her current role to support early learning centres state wide to provide high quality early learning to children and their families. Supporting these centres build their learning, development and social connections within the community.
Bronwyn holds a Bachelor of Education, specialising in Early Childhood Education, Certificate IV in Training and Assessment and is an Accredited VitalSmarts Crucial Conversations Trainer. Bronwyn also facilitates training and professional development nationally with Goodstart, and volunteers with a range of local community groups.
As a mother of two daughters who are part of the Tasmanian community, Bronwyn has a passion for childhood and advocating for children and their rights; and for children to be able to have a voice in the decisions that impact on their lives. These passions guide Bronwyn in both her personal and professional life.
- Read more about Gail
Gail has a long history of working with, coaching and mentoring people across both the government and private sector. Her expertise lies in children’s services, vocational education and training, child safety, family violence and family group conferencing.
Gail loves seeing others doing well and thriving. In 2019 she started her own practice, Everywhen Solutions. She uses her passion and expertise in facilitation, leadership, people development, communication, mentoring, writing and planning to develop bespoke solutions for her clients.
Gail is committed to the concept of lifelong learning and holds a Master of Public Administration, Bachelor of Social Science (Human Services) Child Care, Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, CIV in Celebrancy and a Company Directors Diploma. She is a Certified Practitioner in the i4 Neuroleader Model™️ (www.aboutmybrain.com), using neuroscience to build healthy and high performing leaders and an Accredited Consultant in DISC Advanced®, a tool to help individuals and teams know their natural and adjusted behavioural workplace style.
Gail’s COVID project was to write the book that she had dreamt of for a very long time. My Conscious Grit Model is making a difference in the lives of her readers – just what she aimed to do.
- Read more about Lyndsay
Dr Lyndsay Quarmby
Lyndsay’s work as a clinical psychologist spans over 17 years working clinically with children and families and in the supervision across disciplines on early assessment and intervention. Lyndsay has worked in government, not for profit and the private sectors in senior management positions and as a practicing clinical psychologist. Currently, Lyndsay is the Director and Principal Clinical Psychologist of Emerge Allied Health. Emerge is paediatric multi-disciplinary allied health practice across the North and East Coast of Tasmania. In addition, Lyndsay is a co-director of the Hummingbird Haven. Hummingbird Haven is a not-for-profit organisation committed to enhancing mental health outcomes to those most vulnerable in our community through providing easily accessible and free or affordable access to mental health intervention.
Lyndsay completed her Undergraduate and Doctorate in Clinical and Health Psychology at the University of Newcastle, NSW. Lyndsay has complimented her clinical role with a passion for research in the areas of childhood development and neurodevelopmental differences, namely the early surveillance of autism, along with research on creating sustainable rural health workforces. During her time as a Lecturer in Rural Health at the University of Tasmania she was author on a range of publication’s, presented national and internationally at conferences and had many successful grant applications, namely in the areas of early surveillance for autism, promoting the early years sector in working with children with disabilities and carers wellbeing. Lyndsay has previously served as a panel member on the Minister’s Autism Advisory panel.
Lyndsay is passionate for delivering sustainable services and building the collective capacity of communities in rural and regional areas to support children and their families. Lyndsay is committed to the shared ethos of B4 and how we can nurture the whole village to raise happy and healthy children.
- Read more about Andrew
Professor Andrew Hills
Andrew is a passionate educator and public health advocate. Originally trained as a health and physical education teacher in Tasmania, Andrew spent much of his career interstate and overseas before returning to the state in 2016 as Professor of Exercise and Sports Science. Andrew completed a Master of Science degree at the University of Oregon where he specialized in physical growth and development of children and a PhD on locomotor characteristics of children with obesity from The University of Queensland.
Andrew is a prominent exercise scientist with expertise in physical activity and obesity. For many years he was Professor of Energy Metabolism at Queensland University of Technology and in 2011 was appointed Professor of Allied Health Research at Mater Mothers’ Hospital, Brisbane and affiliated with Mater Research Institute – The University of Queensland. Since returning to the University of Tasmania, Andrew has also completed a 2-year term as Associate Dean in the College of Health and Medicine.
During his career, Andrew has led numerous international projects with the Division of Human Health, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on undernutrition and overnutrition in the developing world, including a multi-country study on infant body composition co-funded by The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. He has also completed assignments with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and World Health Organization (WHO) on the benefits of a healthy lifestyle and obesity prevention. He was the first non-medical President of the Australian and New Zealand Obesity Society (ANZOS).
In addition to his broader contributions to the field of physical activity and health, Andrew is passionate about improving the activity and eating behaviours of mothers and young children.
- Read more about Chloe
Chloe is a proud Palawa woman. She has a strong interest and commitment in empowering communities to build upon their strengths and have their voice and stories heard.
Experienced in the early years sector, Chloe has provided her knowledge and experience to working with children birth to 12 years and their families. In her previous role at the Aboriginal Children Centre, she worked within the Aboriginal Community supporting children and their families to prepare and transition to school. Chloe was guided by the children and families in developing a safe and supportive environment. This allowed children to access and make connection to their culture providing them with a strong sense of belonging.
In her current role with the Connected Beginnings Program, she enjoys supporting communities and service providers to collaborate to identify and overcome challenges. These include closing the gaps in education and health for Aboriginal Children with a result of increasing their school readiness.
- Read more about Regina
Regina has been an educator for more than 30 years and held senior leadership roles in schools and in the Northern Territory Department of Education.
Her expertise lies in developing and leading teams, providing pedagogical leadership and professional learning to support the development of staff. In her most recent leadership role she was responsible for the strategic direction, policy, and partnerships of the Territory’s flagship program Families as First Teachers (FaFT).
Regina managed significant partnerships with the University of Melbourne’s Graduate School of Education. The research projects – a 5 year Linkage study – Building a Bridge into Preschool in Remote Northern Territory Communities used the Abecedarian Approach Australia and became known as 3a. Consequently a smaller research project was developed to support Aboriginal staff and EALD learners – the 3a Online Coaching Study and the ongoing 3a Training Partnership.
Regina’s current ambition is to better understand neuro science and its impact on the development of very young children. She has committed over 200 hours to studying Self Reg, Dr. Stuart Shanker’s framework for understanding stress and managing energy and tension to support self-regulation, a pre requisite for learning.
- Read more about Jacinda
Jacinda is passionate about supporting parents and families in their roles as their children’s first teachers. As the current CEO of playgroup Tasmania, Jacinda works with her team to develop playgroup communities that model child safe, child friendly spaces and set the standard for families’ future interactions with education, health care and other vital systems and supports.
Having worked in project management, public policy and strategic planning across the regional development, primary health and community sectors, Jacinda is experienced and well-equipped to ensure the voices of Tasmanian families and children are heard by decision-makers.