Independent Directors

Ross Fox

Ross began as Executive Director of the National Catholic Education Commission in July 2013 leading the new commission which has been substantially reformed by the Bishops Commission for Catholic Education. In this role Ross is responsible for national policy development and advocacy on behalf of 1730 Catholic schools which enrol more than 760,000 students and receive almost $8billion in government funding. Prior to his current position Ross was the Director of Policy Research and Communications at the Catholic Education Office Melbourne and Executive Officer of the Catholic Education Commission of Victoria Ltd. He has been active in education policy at a state at national level in the non-government sector since 2007.

Ross was educated at UNSW (Bachelor of Engineering, First Class Honours) and Oxford University (Honours MA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics). He has a depth and range of practical and consultancy experience in a diversity of situations – from McKinsey & Company working across Australia and New Zealand as a management consultant to remote Indigenous communities in WA where he was a relief store manager and acting community development adviser. He has also worked in industry in business improvement roles and as a senior policy advisor.

Martin Westwell

After completing his degree and PhD at Cambridge University, Martin moved to Oxford University as a Fellow of Lincoln College. A winding career path through the biotech industry and several science innovation and education organisations returned him to Oxford University as the Deputy Director of the Institute for the Future of the Mind. He and his family moved to South Australia in 2007 where he took up the position of inaugural Director of the Flinders Centre for Science Education in the 21st Century and then Strategic Professor in the Science of Learning at Flinders University. After five years as a board director of the South Australian Certificate of Education, Martin took up the position as Chief Executive of SACE at the start of 2018 with a vision to transform learning design for students across South Australia.

In all his academic, educational and leadership roles, Martin Westwell has made significant contributions to the design and thinking about the teaching of Science. He is also recognised for his work as a leading thinker, researcher and presenter in the science and neuroscience of learning itself and his work has influenced curriculum design, pedagogy and assessment at a national and international level.

Branch Appointed Directors

Australian Capital Territory

Michele McLoughlin

Michele McLoughlin BA (Hons, History); DipEd, Macquarie University; Grad Dip History/Anthropology, Australian National University; Grad Dip Information Systems, University of Canberra. Awarded the Leanne Harvey Ford Award for excellence in ‘The services for young people, specialisation within the Librarianship courses’, University of Canberra; ACEL ACT Certificate of Excellence for ‘Excellence in Educational Leadership’. Michele is currently Deputy Principal and International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme (MYP) Coordinator at Telopea Park School, Lycée Franco-Australien de Canberra.

Michele has worked as a secondary teacher leader in New South Wales Government Schools (regional and Western Sydney) and since 1998 in ACT Secondary Government Schools. Michele is passionate about education and how it changes lives. Michele believes in the importance of the school community and the school community’s role in engendering a sense of belonging, and a place where everyone is valued.

Michele has been a long-standing member of ACEL ACT. As a member of ACEL ACT Michele has worked collaboratively with ACT Government, Catholic and Independent teachers and leaders. Michele is the past Chair of the ACT/NSW MYP Coordinators Group. In her roles working for ACEL and the IB Michele has recognised the importance of national and international dialogue and communication. Michele looks forward to bringing the voices of teacher leaders to ACEL National.

New South Wales

Ann McIntyre


Ann McIntyre is recognised for her work in effective teaching and leadership and school and system improvement.

Ann is an educational researcher and writer who provides powerful professional learning. Ann is an honorary in education at the University of Sydney and is the Australian national researcher for the International Teacher Policy Study with the University of Stanford in California.

As the Director of Professional Learning and Leadership Development in NSW she was driven by her deep understanding of the power of the alignment of teacher, leader, school and system learning and their impact on student outcomes. She led the development of professional frameworks, standards, programs and research. As superintendent of schools and school principal she received numerous excellence awards and while principal received a school quality assurance report stating “this school is on the leading edge of best practices in teaching and learning.” Ann was a key writer of the Great Teaching Inspired Learning teacher quality reform agenda in NSW.

As a result of her contribution to educational leadership Ann has been awarded; the Churchill Fellowship, the Vincent Fairfax Ethics in Leadership Award, the inaugural Sydney Leadership Award, the inaugural ACE Leadership in Professional Learning award, the ACEL Patrick Duignan award for Leadership, the NSW ACEL Fellowship and the National ACE Fellowship.


Northern Territory

Aderyn Chatterton

Executive Director, School Improvement and Leadership at Department of Education Northern Territory

As an experienced educational leader with both school and system experience, I understand that engagement, growth and achievement are the three priorities that unite all schools, regardless of their location or student demographic. I am excited to play a key role in the NT school improvement journey as my team provides tailored and responsive support to schools so they can accelerate their own school improvement.


Dr Deborah Kember

BHMS (ed) Qld, GradDipEd(CompEd) QUT, MEd QUT, PhD QUT. FACEL

Deb is a teacher by profession, currently working as a Director in the State Schools Division of the Queensland Department of Education. She has dedicated over 30 years to the school education sector In Australia and New Zealand as a project manager, policy developer, university lecturer, school leader and teacher.

Deb’s belief in the power and excitement of collegial professional learning led her to take on leadership roles during her career such as President of the Queensland Society of Information Technology in Education, followed by President of the Joint Council of Queensland Teachers' Association. The latter role led to national professional community leadership that included the role of Vice-President of the Australian Joint Council of Teacher Professional Association and interim board member of Teaching Australia.

Deb joined ACEL in 2005 to broaden her thinking about leadership and learning. She has been a member of the Queensland Branch Executive since 2010, becoming a Fellow in 2014 then Queensland President and a National Director.


South Australia

Warren Symonds

Warren Symonds is an experienced educator who has worked in Department for Education and Child Development (DECD) in South Australia since 1987. His teaching experience has varied from small Area Schools through to large metropolitan High Schools. For the past seven years Warren has been the Principal of Mount Barker High School. During this time he has initiated Mount Barker High Schools’ introduction of Positive Psychology into the whole school approach. This approach was expanded into the Mount Barker community and eight primary schools to improve the wellbeing of children and young people across the Adelaide Hills. Professor Martin Seligman has referred to the approaches being used at Mount Barker High School as being a world’s first and at the cutting edge of teaching Positive Education to a whole school community.

Warren is a newer member to ACEL starting his membership in 2013. During his membership he has been an active member supporting the development of leadership with a focus on leader’s wellbeing. He was the recipient of the 2017 ACEL SA Educational Leadership Medal and the ACEL National Fellowship.


Jacqui Lawless

Jacqui is the Principal of Larmenier, a Catholic primary school in Launceston. A school which boasts a functioning school farm and shares its site with an Aged Care Home. Prior to this appointment in Launceston, Jacqui was the Assistant Principal at St James College, Cygnet. Jacqui has worked at many schools in the greater Hobart area and has worked across multiple sectors and across all schooling ages. In schools where she has had leadership roles of Principal, Acting Principal and Deputy Principal she has been an activator of school improvement and led significant educational change. She has worked extensively in the area of student support and special education and is passionate about quality education for all students. Jacqui has a Bachelor of Education, and has recently completed her Masters of Education.


Coralee Pratt

M. Ed, B.Ed, Grad. Dip. Early Childhood Teaching. National Fellow ACEL.

Coralee Pratt is an educational leader who has worked in a diverse range of settings and communities across all regions in Victoria and in Queensland. She is currently Executive Director, Bayside Peninsula Area, South East Victoria Region and in 2016 was a Senior Education Improvement Leader (SEIL) in the Outer East Area, North East Region of Victoria.

Coralee has been an executive board member of both the ACEL Queensland and Victoria Branches and since 2014 has been responsible for coordinating the ACEL Net professional learning events including the popular ACEL Q & A Forums.

Coralee has been principal of three schools: Camberwell South Primary School (2012 – 2015); Helensvale State School, one of Queensland’s largest primary schools (2010-2012) and Roberts McCubbin Primary School, Box Hill (2000 – 2005).

From 2005 – 2009 she held several system leadership roles including Assistant Regional Director in the Eastern Metropolitan Region where she played a significant role in leading the school improvement agenda in 248 government schools.

Over the past decade, Coralee has been influential in leading educational change and the design, delivery and evaluation of a comprehensive suite of professional learning and leadership development programs at school and system level. Her work with ACER and the Grattan Institute in targeting teaching to personalise learning had a significant impact and resulted in Camberwell South PS being identified as one of Australia’s 40 most innovative schools in 2014.

Western Australia

Sinan Kerimofski

Sinan is the Principal of Vasse Primary School, an Independent Public School, situated in the southwest of Western Australia. He is also the ‘CAPES’ region Network Principal.

Vasse Primary is situated in a rapidly growing suburb. The school was established in 1869 where 12 students commenced their schooling with one teacher. Now the school boasts over 730 students and 75 staff. He has worked in rural, regional and metropolitan schools in Western Australia over the past 26 years. Sinan’s focus has been to ensure the school is well resourced with a strong positive culture through focusing on fostering positive relationships.

He is also passionate about engaging students through creating flexible, adaptable and stimulating learning environments.

Sinan's leadership beliefs are simple:

  • Create clear vision and direction
  • Build solid relationships through positive communication and shared experiences
  • Surround yourself around good people
  • Acknowledge innovation and self-improvement.