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Professor Rachael Field

Faculty of Law, Bond University

Rachael Field is a Professor in the Bond University Law School and a member of the Executive of Bond University’s Centre for Professional Legal Education. She is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and an Australian Learning and Teaching Fellow, having completed a National Fellowship on promoting law student well being. She teaches first year law threshold concepts and transition, as well as dispute resolution. She received national recognition for teaching excellence through a national citation in 2008, a national teaching fellowship in 2010 and a national teaching excellence award in 2014.

Professor Field founded the Australian Wellness Network for Law, which is now expanding internationally. Her areas of research expertise include dispute resolution, family law, domestic violence and legal education. She is also co-founder of the Australian Dispute Resolution Research Network. She has a portfolio of more than 80 scholarly publications and is co-author of four books.

Since 1994, Professor Field has volunteered on the management committee of the Women’s Legal Service in Brisbane and she has been president of the Service since 2004. In 2013, Rachael was named Queensland Woman Lawyer of the Year.

Dr Vandana Gopikumar

Tata Institute of Social Sciences

Dr Vandana Gopikumar is co-founder of The Banyan and The Banyan Academy of Leadership in Mental Health. She is passionate about understanding the highs, lows, and emotional states in between, as well as the meanings and attributions ascribed to these emotional states, amongst persons living with bipolar disorder. She is also interested in working with those who experience auditory and visual hallucinations and delusions, using a social and sociological lens. Within this framework, she is keen to understand whether these phenomena are context specific, culturally influenced, or neutral.

Dr Gopikumar was also part of a team that developed several models that address humanitarian, mental health and social crises, such as homelessness, social exclusion, distress, mental ill health, and loss of social capital, while promoting diversity. In addition, her research focuses on the process of care giving, its role in value-based mental health practice, and designing a responsive health system. Dr Gopikumar says her primary and most fulfilling role is that of a clinician or social work practitioner. Her team attempts to make the lives of the distressed persons that they come in contact with at least marginally better and enjoyable.

A Professor of Social Work at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Dr Gopikumar works with a diverse group of mental health professionals, health coaches, community mobilisers, and peer advocates as part of her clinical and quality audit work.

Professor Ian Hickie

Co-Director for Health and Policy, The University of Sydney's Brain and Mind Centre

Ian Hickie is Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Sydney's Central Clinical School, and is Co-Director for Health and Policy at the University's Brain and Mind Centre. He is an NHMRC Senior Principal Research Fellow (2018-22), having previously been one of the inaugural NHMRC Australian Fellows (2008-12). Since its inception he has been one of the Commissioners in Australia’s National Mental Health Commission (2012-current), overseeing enhanced accountability for mental health reform and suicide prevention in Australia.

Ian is an internationally renowned researcher in clinical psychiatry, with particular reference to depression and other mood disorders, early intervention, use of new and emerging technologies and suicide prevention. In his role with the National Mental Health Commission, and his independent research, health system and advocacy roles, he has been at the forefront of the move to have mental health and suicide prevention integrated with other aspects of health care (notably chronic disease and ambulatory care management).

Richard Hill MA, MEd, MBMSc, DPC

Practicing Psychotherapist and Counsellor

Richard Hill is a practicing psychotherapist and counsellor, an author, educator, and professional supervisor. He is acknowledged internationally as an expert in human dynamics, communications, the brain and the mind. He is a regular speaker on the topics of neuroscience and psychosocial genomics, has developed special training courses for suicide prevention, and is the originator of The Curiosity Approach.

Richard is President of the Global Association of Interpersonal Neurobiology Studies, a select member of the International Psychosocial Genomics Research Group, an Esteemed Member of the International Council of Professional Therapists, director of the Mindscience Institute and Managing Editor of The Neuropsychotherapist. He holds Masters degrees in Arts; Education; and Mind and Brain Sciences. His books include Choose Hope and How the ‘Real World’ Is Driving Us Crazy!, as well as numerous articles, journal papers and book chapters, including Perspectives on Coping and Resilience and Strengths Based Social Work Practice in Mental Health, published worldwide.

Professor Ross W. Prior

Learning and Teaching in the Arts in Higher Education, University of Wolverhampton

Ross W. Prior, PhD, is the inaugural Professor of Learning and Teaching in the Arts in Higher Education at the University of Wolverhampton, United Kingdom. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society for Public Health (UK) and Chair of the Arts Learning and Teaching Research Group (ALTR) at the University of Wolverhampton. His record of research surrounding learning and teaching spans a range of educational and training settings.

Professor Prior is best known for his book 'Teaching Actors: knowledge transfer in actor training' and his work in applied arts and health, particularly as the Founder and continuing Principal Editor of the Journal of Applied Arts and Health.

Engaged in various public policy consultations, Professor Prior especially consults within arts, educational and health settings and has authored several government reports on arts provision in England. His own research mainly explores a range of issues relating to learning and teaching in the Arts. He is an internationally known figure presenting his research and keynote speaking across the world. His latest book 'Using art as research in learning and teaching: multidisciplinary approaches across the arts', published by Intellect/University of Chicago Press, is to be released in 2018.

Dr Russell Roberts

Associate Professor in Management, Charles Sturt University

Dr Russell Roberts is Associate Professor of Management at Charles Sturt University and Adjunct Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Sydney. He has extensive experience as a clinician, academic and service director. As director of a mental health service he led an organisation of more than 1,000 staff, delivering comprehensive services across the spectrum of care. Facilities in his organisation ranged from Australia’s largest integrated mental health hospital, to teams in Australia’s most remote locations, such as Wilcannia, Lightning Ridge and Bourke.

Dr Roberts is Editor in Chief of the Australian Journal of Rural Health, Chair of the National Alliance for Rural and Remote Mental Health and Chair of the ANZ Rural and Remote Mental Health Symposium. He has previously served on the NSW Mental Health Commission Advisory Council, as Director of Clinical Training at Griffith University. He has an Executive Masters of Public Administration, a PhD in research and a Masters of Clinical Psychology. He is the Co-Chair of the national Equally Well Implementation Committee.

With state, national and international awards in e-mental health, Russell has more than 20 years' experience in developing, implementing and consolidating new and innovative health services across a range of complex environments and is referenced as one of the 50 most influential rural Australians. He has led the development of a number of innovative, programs such as the Mental Health Emergency Care Rural Access Program, the Mental Health Rural Outreach Service, and the Aboriginal Workforce Development Program.