Specialist, experienced and accredited consultants
Dr Kerry Ferguson
EdD, MEd (Counselling), BAppSc (OT), MVAFT
Director and Principal Consultant
Dr Sylvia Walton
EdD, BA, MA, Dip Ed, B Ed, FRGS, FAICD, FACEL, FACE, FAPC
Dr Kerry Ferguson has over thirty year's experience in tertiary education. She has led large and diverse portfolios and managed and led complex organisational change. She is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and for the fifteen years proceeding 2014, she held a Pro Vice-Chancellor position with a major focus on Equity and Student Services. Prior to this, she held a variety of academic leadership positions in Health Sciences.
Her portfolio of responsibilities included being a member of the University Threat Assessment team and Crisis Intervention team, complaint management and resolution, diversity and equal opportunity for staff and students, student services, student equity, social inclusion, Indigenous education, child care services, student enrichment and engagement, counselling services and developing the Mental Health strategy for the University.
Kerry's formal qualifications include a a Professional Doctorate in Education, a Masters of Education in the field of counselling and a Bachelor degree in Occupational Therapy. Kerry is a Family Therapist and an experienced mediator in conflict resolution.
Mr Ian Smith
MA – Public Policy, Grad Cert HR, BA, Cert IV TAE, Advanced Diploma - Facilitation, Nationally Accredited Mediator
Ms Janet Beard
MBus, GradCertQA, GAICD
Dr Sylvia Walton has been highly awarded for her contribution to the Australian educational landscape across all levels. In 2011 she was awarded a Doctorate of Education (honoris causa) in recognition of her outstanding leadership as Chancellor and council member of La Trobe University, and in relation to her work addressing issues access in higher education for students from diverse backgrounds.
Sylvia's distinguished career, has earned her the reputation as one of Australia’s foremost school principals. Sylvia is particularly known for her experience in implementing innovative programs and setting new benchmarks for best practice. Recognition of Dr Walton's stellar career has come through numerous awards and honours including being named in the 2003 Australia Day Honours List as an Officer of the General Division of the Order of Australia (AO) for her service to education, as well as being inducted into the Victorian Women’s Honour Roll 2014.
Mr Ian Smith has extensive experience working in the Australian higher education sector, with his primary focus being on people management and organisational change. He brings strong experience in leadership and management of large scale and complex organisational change initiatives at both strategic and operational levels. He currently works as an independent consultant and facilitator, primarily in the higher education, government and not-for-profit sectors and prior to this, he had a senior role at La Trobe University, facilitating change in the University’s administrative organisational structures and services. Prior to his roles in human resource management Ian worked in managerial and practitioner roles in the library and information services sector. Ian is an established and well-read author on change and organisational improvement. Ian’s writing strives to give managers and organisational leaders ideas and practical tools for grappling with the problems of effecting change with and through people.
Ian's qualifications include a Master of Arts in Public Policy, Graduate Certificate in Human Resources, Bachelor of Arts in Library and Information Services. Ian is a nationally accredited mediator and an experienced facilitator.
Ms Janet Beard has more than thirty years of experience in management roles at three Australian universities (Melbourne, La Trobe and Sydney) and undertaken consultancies and reviews of administrative, technical and academic support services in Universities, nationally and internationally (South Pacific, New Zealand and Indonesia).
Most recently, she has managed and coordinated major change programs at the University of Melbourne to design and implement improved administrative services across the University. Her special interests are in organisational analysis and diagnosis, planning and design, organisational development, continuous business process and system improvement, benefits measurement and tracking, facilitating and engaging diverse stakeholder groups, and taking people through a change management experience. Her business improvement and change management expertise is informed by a successful track record in managing large and complex faculties as well as university-wide change programs.
Janet’s qualifications include a Master of Business, a Graduate Certificate in Quality Assurance and she is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. She has undertaken a senior leadership course at Stanford University.