Community Consultative Committee 

Community Consultative Committee members are appointed by the Wet Tropics Management Authority Board. 

Committee members contribute their views and provide advice to the Wet Tropics Management Authority’s Board on relevant World Heritage issues.

The Committee comprises of individuals who have relevant sector or community networks. The committee holds diverse knowledge of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area, is involved in community issues and has the capacity to be the conduit for information flow between the community and the Authority. 

2019–2022 Community Consultative Committee 

Wet Tropics Management Authority

Dr Sally Driml 

Chair of the Community Consultative Committee 

Wet Tropics Management Authority Board Director 

Dr Sally Driml has a strong background and experience in policy and economics applied to environmental management, eco-tourism and protected areas. She is currently an honorary senior lecturer and researcher at the University of Queensland. Dr Driml has more than 30 years of varied experience researching and working across issues such as climate change, protected area management and  tourism in the Wet Tropics region and other significant areas in Queensland and Australia. She has strong industry links and takes a proactive and collaborative approach. 

Wet Tropics Management Authority

Dr Jamie Oliver 

Dr Jamie Oliver has more than 40 years of experience as a research scientist, environmental manager, and research manager at James Cook University, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and the Australian Institute of Marine Science. Dr Oliver chaired the Steering Committee for the International Coral Reef Action Network for several years and has an excellent knowledge of the role of science (including community-based citizen science) in management of protected areas. Since 2018 he has been President of the Paluma and District Community Association. Dr Oliver brings a wealth of experience from the local to the international level in World Heritage Area management.

Wet Tropics Management Authority

Dr Sigrid Heise-Pavlov

Dr Sigrid Heise-Pavlov is the Professor for Rainforest Ecology at The School for Field Studies (SFS). Since 2008 Sigrid has taught rainforest ecology to countless students and led numerous research projects on rainforest mammals and the development of restoration sites and their colonisation by fauna. Sigrid has been working with local Tablelands NGOs such as Trees for Evelyn and Atherton Tablelands (TREAT) and the Tree Kangaroo and Mammal Group (TKMG) and believes that strong connections between community groups, conservation minded community members, government agencies and scientific institutions are essential to conserve the unique natural assets of the Wet Tropics in perpetuity.

Wet Tropics Management Authority

Ellie Bock 

Ellie Bock has been involved in Wet Tropics issues for more than 18 years as a resident, neighbour, advocate and consultant. Residing in the southern Wet Tropics, Ellie is an experienced freelance environmental services and land-use consultant, facilitator and land and sea management planner. She has worked closely with Rainforest Aboriginal Peoples for many years, and through her personal and professional networks has gained deep insight into their aspirations for collaborative management of country across the region. Ellie’s passion for ensuring the World Heritage Area’s diverse native species and unique biosphere prevail for the benefit of all future generations, confirms her capacity to contribute positively to the Community Consultative Committee.

Wet Tropics Management Authority

Alan Gillanders 

Alan Gillanders is a highly-respected and recognised nature guide and environmental educator. Based in Yungaburra on the Atherton Tablelands, Alan’s involvement in Wet Tropics conservation predates the 1988 listing. Alan has extensive Wet Tropics biodiversity knowledge and has been instrumental in supporting conservation efforts within the World Heritage Area through his roles in Trees for Evelyn and Atherton Tablelands (TREAT), the Tree Kangaroo and Mammal Group (TKMG), Mabi Forest Recovery Team, Tablelands National Parks Volunteers and BirdLife Australia. 

Wet Tropics Management Authority

Cathy Retter 

Cathy Retter has been the President of Kuranda Envirocare since 2005. She has a strong environmental advocacy focus and collaborates across sectors to promote meaningful conservation outcomes for the community. Cathy has led extensive revegetation activities along the Barron River, 'Plastic Free July', established an 'Action Plan' for the critically endangered Kuranda Tree Frog and partners with organisations such as Tangaroa Blue. As an active and passionate community member who lives on the edge of the World Heritage Area, Cathy brings a strong community and volunteering focus.


Wet Tropics Management Authority

Gavin Singleton 

Gavin Singleton currently manages the Yirrganydji Land and Sea Ranger Program for the Dawul Wuru Aboriginal Corporation. Gavin is connected to Yirrganydji/ Djabugay Peoples, Umpila People and Kalkadoon People and recently graduated from Curtin University with Honours in Applied Science. He is a passionate cultural, environmental and community development practitioner, and is respected by many across the region for his approach and knowledge. Drawing on his combined Traditional and scientific knowledge-sets, Gavin has been invited to present and perform at several important global events including the UN Climate Change Conference in Poland, the UN Oceans Conference in New York, the 2014 IUCN World Parks Congress in Australia, the COP-11 Convention on Biological Diversity in India and as a TEDx JCU Cairns speaker. 

Wet Tropics Management Authority

Lucy Graham 

Lucy Graham has been the Director of the Cairns and Far North Environment Centre (CAFNEC) since August 2019 and has been associated with the organisation since 2014. She has previously worked in adventure tourism and with organisations like The Wilderness Society and GetUp. Growing up locally, Lucy has strong and enduring community connections across the region, and with a sustainability and social science background has a passion for environmental and climate justice that empowers First Nations people and communities. She brings these skills, connections and experiences together with a passion to protect and enhance Australia’s protected areas.

Wet Tropics Management Authority

Peter Rowles 

Peter Rowles has had a life-long interest in the natural environment and concern at the rate of its loss. A degree in biology at the University of Queensland led to a stint on Heron Island, then a career as a secondary school biology, marine studies and horticulture teacher in the Wet Tropics region. He has a long history as an active volunteer in a number of community organisations in the Innisfail/Mission Beach area (Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland, Johnstone Ecological Society, and Johnstone Landcare) with ongoing involvement in promoting conservation and ecologically sustainable land management. Peter is currently President of C4 in Mission Beach, a lifetime member of Terrain NRM, and a member of the Cassowary Recovery Team.

Wet Tropics Management Authority

Joann Schmider 

Joann Schmider identifies as a Rainforest Country traditional custodian through her apical family Brooks and Wari-barra locality group of the Mamu native title group of the Dyirbalic-speaking nation, which is one of ten across the Wet Tropics. Joann’s passion is promoting two-way understanding through Aboriginal peoples’ self-determination, empowerment and participation in decision-making. She brings more than 40 years’ experience across cultural, social, environment and economic development fields, and more than 15 years’ experience advocating for the region’s Rainforest Aboriginal Peoples’ interests. This includes as a director for Mamu, Central Wet Tropics and Terrain NRM; project officer for the Rainforest Aboriginal Peoples’ Alliance 2012-2015; and in scientific, cultural values and Aboriginal knowledge networks. Joann is doing a PhD examining measures for supporting Wet Tropics’ Traditional Custodians’ involvement with presentation of the Area including especially the tourism industry. She has been an active contributor to the Authority's advisory committees and processes for a dozen years.

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