Who is ADCET?
The ADCET team is a small but exceptional team of experts whose collective experience is what makes ADCET's resources and content so dynamic.
Meet the Team
Darlene McLennanADCET Manager
Darlene has been working in the further education and disability sector since 2005. As well as managing ADCET she is also currently the National Disability Coordination Officer for Tasmania. She completed her Master of Business with the University of Tasmania in 2013 and has a post-graduate degree in Careers Education through RMIT. Darlene feels her work in ADCET compliments the key objectives of her NDCO role, which are to improve linkages, improve transitions and improve participation for people with disability in tertiary education. Darlene enjoys the engagement and enthusiasm from the Disability Practitioners across the sector who are so committed to ensuring the participation of people with disability in further education. Connect with Darlene on LInkedIn.
Jane HawkeswoodADCET Project Coordinator
Jane was appointed as the ADCET coordinator in 2002. The landscape of the internet has changed dramatically since ADCET begun and with each new area that ADCET ventures into such as social media, webinars and more recently podcasts Jane has taken on these new platforms with enthusiasm. Her work and commitment to ADCET have ensured ADCET ongoing success and growth.
Darren BrittenNational Assistive Technology Project Officer NDCO / ADCET
Darren has been involved in inclusive practice and accessible resource development in the tertiary sector for almost two decades and has a passion for technology and how information is delivered and accessed. He has been active in designing and developing learning objects for online learning, providing advice and training to academic staff around digital equity, and was instrumental in the establishment of the Inclusive Resources Development (IRD) team at La Trobe University. IRD provided best practice in the provision of accessible learning resources for students with print and hearing impairments and won several awards for student support including: 'Making a Difference' award from Vision Australia, an ‘Excellence in Transition Award' from Pathways 9 and a La Trobe University Citation for Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning. Connect with Darren on LInkedIn.
Gabrielle O'BrienSenior Content Developer and Project Officer
Gabrielle has over 25 years' experience in Higher Education across various institutions including the University of Queensland, Griffith University and QUT. Her expertise includes delivering whole-of-institution programs that improve access, participation, retention and success for student and staff equity groups in education and employment. She has a broad range of interests including strategy and policy development, training and awareness, complaints management, improving disability inclusion and addressing gender equity and gendered violence. Gabrielle has a range of qualifications including a BA, Graduate Diploma in Business, a Graduate Certificate in Disability Inclusion and just finished her Masters in Human Services. The nexus between research and practice is what has kept Gabrielle in the sector for so long and why working with equity practitioners to affect change is a lifelong passion. Gabrielle was previously an executive member of the Equity Practitioners in Higher Education Australasia including a stint as President between 2014 and 2019. In that time, she worked closely with ADCET and was previously a member of their Executive Committee. Connect with Gabrielle on LInkedIn
Charley UlaleADCET Communications Officer
Charley Ulale has been working in digital and social marketing and communications for over 5 years. She studied both exercise/health science and business at Griffith University in Queensland. Her volunteer work has seen her work closely with the disability sector for over 10 years. She has expertise across a variety of areas including digital marketing, advertising, project management, social media management and content production. Charley started with ADCET in early 2019 managing the communications and marketing for both ADCET and Disability Awareness and has been working on a number of projects including the launch of the Disability Awareness eLearning programs and ADCET Podcast. Charley enjoys the diversity her role brings and helping to remove barriers for people with disability in further education. Connect with Charley on LInkedIn.
Nina-Marie ThomasADCET Communications Officer
Nina has worked in the higher education sector for over six years, with roles including Web Editor of Westerly at The University of Western Australia and Media and Communications Officer/Publications Editor with the National Centre for Student Equity in Higher Education. Prior to completing a BA in Professional Writing and Publishing at Curtin University, Nina enjoyed an eclectic mix of professions including brand and marketing manager, veterinary nurse, and tour guide. Alongside her role with ADCET, Nina is a freelance editor, Journal Manager of the Journal of the Australian and New Zealand Student Services Association, and an Administration Officer at Murdoch University Access and Inclusion. Nina is passionate about celebrating difference and empowering individuals to achieve their personal and academic goals. Connect with Nina on LInkedIn.
Kalli KarvelasWeb Developer Disability Awareness
Kalli has worked in the Higher Education sector for the past 17 years in the areas of photography, eLearning development, project management and accessibility compliance and standards. Kalli has a Bachelor of Arts from RMIT University and completed a Graduate Certificate in Higher Education from La Trobe University. In 2015, Kalli completed the Professional Certificate in Web Accessibility Compliance with the University of South Australia. At La Trobe University, Kalli worked as an Accessibility Support Officer producing accessible learning resources for students with a disability, and authoring training guides and resources for staff on the development of inclusive resources. More recently, as the owner of Red Asterix, Kalli has been providing accessibility expertise and services to RMIT University, Deakin University and the University of Tasmania in the areas of developing WCAG 2.1 compliant websites, web accessibility auditing and providing alternate formats for students with hearing impairments.
Danielle KutchelADCET Content Writer
Danielle is a journalist and communications professional with experience working in not for profits and corporates. As a journalist, Danielle writes on disability, education, and diverse and marginalised communities. She has long been interested in the challenges faced by people with a disability and how these barriers can be dismantled. As well as her work for ADCET, Danielle is a journalist with Pro Bono News and freelances for a number of different outlets. She enjoys using her skills to make a real, palpable difference in the world and recently completed an Honours thesis investigating media representations of people with disability. Connect with Danielle on LinkedIn.
Andrew DownieADCET Video Developer and Content Writer
Andrew Downie is a psychologist with a postgraduate diploma in education. Until early 2018, Andrew worked for TAFE NSW for 25 years, providing information to staff and students on adaptive technology. As well as providing information on specialised equipment, this involved input to staff on correct document structure. For a long time, Andrew has recognised that structuring documents correctly is of huge benefit to both authors and to readers who have disabilities. He has therefore developed a regime of indoctrination (education). Andrew has quite strong skills in areas of MS Office, PDF, HTML and CSS. He also has a strong knowledge of equipment relevant to people who have vision loss for selfish reasons, as he is blind. He also has extensive knowledge of equipment, whether specialised or "mainstream", relevant to people who have a wide variety of disabilities.
Previous Content Developers
Debbie HindleADCET Content Writer (2021)
Debbie has over 25 years’ experience working in the Human Services field. This includes five years as an NDCO hosted by the University of Tasmania and 15 months as the Senior Advisor to the Tasmanian Minister for Human Services. She recently completed a Masters of Positive Psychology through the University of Melbourne. Debbie also has a Graduate Certificate in Media Relations. Currently she is busy undertaking project work for the NDCO program, as well as being a content writer for ADCET. She is responsible for composing the Disability Practitioner profiles on the web home page, a role she particularly enjoys. “What a great job – hearing the stories from such a committed and passionate group of people. It’s a privilege to be able to share these with others, and to know that whilst are all working to make a difference in our own space, in combination we are creating possibilities and enabling the potential of many people.”
Trevor AllanADCET Content Writer (2020)
Trevor Allan has worked in the disability, equity and education sectors for over 20 years. Trevor managed the Disability Service at The Australian National University for almost 9 years and was the Head of Student Equity, Welfare and Disability Services at the University of Western Sydney for almost 7 years until he was medically retired in 2013. He has been a significant contributor to innovations such as the ANU Digital Lecture Delivery Project, and the UWS Inherent Requirements projects. Trevor was awarded the Vice Chancellor’s Award for Career Achievement at the 2006 ANU Staff Excellence Awards, a UWS Vice-Chancellor’s Excellence Award in 2011 and a UWS Outstanding Contribution to Teaching & Learning Award in 2012. In 2014 he was the first Life Member of the Australian Tertiary Education Network on Disability (ATEND). He has continued to be an active participant in the sector post-retirement and regularly contributes to aust-ed, the ATEND email list discussions as well as undertaking some Consultancy and Project work in the field.
Monica LeahyADCET Content Writer (2020)
Monica Leahy has sixteen years experience as a secondary teacher and senior school manager. She has managed Policy and Planning for Disability SA and HACC programs for ageing ethnic communities. Her work to integrate disability inclusion into SA Government business won her an award from the Minister for Disability and an Australia Day Public Service Medal. From 2008-2012 Monica was a National Disability Coordination Officer and in 2012-13 she worked as Statewide Coordinator of Disability Support for TAFE SA. In 2013 she quit the rat race to start her own business – Disability Learning Management (DLM) Solutions. She now consults to the private training sector, assesses students in Certificates III and IV in Disability, writes policy for the NFP sector and supports individuals returning to work after catastrophic injuries. Her website is: www.dlmsolutions.org
Maribel SteelADCET Content Writer (2021)
Maribel has over 25 years experience working in Disability, Education, Communication and Allied Health. Based in Melbourne, she shares her lived experience of blindness as a professional writer, public speaker, presenter and advocate. She is passionate about raising awareness for inclusive practices, and values teamwork and collaboration where the voices of champions for change can be heard. In 2017, she received an ‘Inspire’ Award in the Lynette Rowe Best Achievement in Community Service, and is an award-winning Toastmaster. She is a peer advisor for VisionAware (USA) and is currently completing VET studies in Certificate IV Training and Assessment. Her book, ‘Blindness for Beginners’, continues to spark interest in the media across Australia, UK and USA bringing a focus on ‘ability’ in disability. Read more at: Maribelsteel.com
Jane BrittADCET Content Writer (2019)
Jane has been involved in working for the disability sector across multiples roles in recent times. In addition to being a Disability Consultant and Freelance Writer for ADCET, Jane is a Business Transformation Graduate, working in Service Innovation and Design for Vision Australia and currently serves in the role of President for non-for-profit charity organisation, Achilles Brisbane. Jane is deeply committed to the improvement of the lives of people with disability, through advocacy, writing and active engagement with members of the disability community. Outside her professional roles, Jane is a Peer Mentor for students with vision loss through Vision Australia, supporting them in their educational endeavours. In her spare time, Jane is a musician, photographer, runner and enjoys hand crafts (cards).
ADCET Advisory Committee
The ADCET also relies on support from the ADCET Advisory Committee. The committee focuses on strategic direction to ensure the ongoing development and improvement of the website, resources and projects undertaken by ADCET.