Parks and Leisure Australia is governed by a national board comprising of a representative from each of our five regions and two co-opted members who provide specific specialist professional skills. The board provides leadership by determining the strategic direction, policies and agendas for the organisation. Staff located in the national office in Adelaide, South Australia and in each of our five regions (QLD, NSW/ACT, SA/NT, VIC/TAS and WA) deliver membership services and implement PLA's priorities outlined in the organisations 50 Point Plan Strategic Plan.
Parks and Leisure Australia National Board
Martin Lambert (QLD) - President
Martin has more than 30 years’ experience in planning and management of parks, sport and recreation and a particular passion for urban parks and city wide open space planning. Martin has worked at State and Local Government levels and is a Director at Otium Planning Group. He lives in Cairns and loves regional cities. Martin is also the President of the PLA Qld Regional Council. He has been a strong supporter of PLA for many years and believes strongly in the role of PLA to provide professional development opportunities and policy advocacy.
Martin’s qualifications include: Master of Education - Social & Environmental, B.App.Sc (Parks & Recreation), A. D. (Rural Techniques - Wilderness Reserves & Wildlife). Cert IV T&A.
Paul Jane (VIC/TAS) - Deputy President
Paul has extensive experience in the Sport and Recreation industry with over 20 years of experience in a diverse range of roles and organisations. He holds a Bachelor of Science (Biology) and a Masters of Business Administration underpinning his experience in the industry. His current role as the Manager of the Sport and Recreation department at the City of Greater Geelong sees him responsible for the operation of major sports venues, as well as the planning for and management of council’s reserves and open space, assets and sports development. He has a passion for creating high functioning teams and developing a strong sport and recreation sector.
John Wilkinson (SA/NT)
Les Munn (NSW/ACT)
Les Munn is a long time member and current president of the NSW / ACT board. Les is currently employed as Manager Reserves ,Recreation and Building Services at Northern Beaches Council, NSW and has been employed in local government for 41 years with 34 years experience in Parks Management ( including maintenance and design/construction.). Les is a strong supporter of commercial use of Public Open Space as a means of providing the necessary funding assistance for ongoing maintenance and improvement works as well as improving the recreational experience for visitors. Les holds a Graduate Diploma in Local Govt. Management and an Associate Diploma of Horticulture.
Rachel Thorpe (WA)
Tara Looby - Marketing and Communications
Tara Looby is the Group Manager – Client Relations and Marketing for IVM Group. Tara co–founded IVM Group, Queensland’s leading vegetation management solution provider, in 2013, following a successful period with Technigro. She has a long running understanding of open space management and the important role it plays in encouraging a healthy and active community.
With a significant depth of marketing experience Tara has a wide-ranging set of operational and strategic skills. Along with general business, management and marketing skills, she is also proficient in research and analysis of consumer demand and market trends, analysis gaps in the market, product lifecycle analysis, and target market identification. Other abilities include the formulation, implementation, management and evaluation of marketing plans and strategies. Tara has extensive knowledge about a range of different industries and specialises in effective implementation of above and below-the-line marketing.
Tim Sargent - Finance Director
Tim has over 20 years experience as a director of firms. Prior to Moore Stephens / Hayes Knight he worked for a variety of accountancy practices, before joining Alan Green & Co in Tim consults to a large variety of business sectors and structures, from legal partnerships to food manufacturers and retail chains, all with excellent results.
With formal qualifications in accounting, marketing and human resources, Tim works very closely with his clients in all facets of their business to ensure that they stay on track and achieve their financial goals. Combined with these qualifications, Tim has had over 25 years experience in consulting to small and medium size with Strategic and Business Planning, Business Mentoring, Implementation and Monitoring of Key Performance, Product Costing, Human Resources and Finance Management Reviews.
Tim’s qualifications include CA, Bachelor of Arts (Accounting), Graduate Diploma (Human Resources), Bachelor of Business
(Marketing) and is a Registered Tax Agent
Barbra Gaiotto - National Conference
Barbra has worked in the Sports and Recreation Industry for the last 20 years in programming, planning and contract management and has been in the Sports Development and Planning area with the Manningham City Council for the last 18 years where she is currently the Coordinator Sports & Recreation and responsible for sports development and liaison for major capital and strategic projects implementation and delivery. Barbra is also responsible for administering contracts for the operations and management of Council ‘s Aquatic and Leisure Centre and Indoor Stadiums.
Barbra has also been a sessional lecturer for Swinburne University – Certificate II Community Recreation and Fitness for a 3 year period, where she delivered a series of lecturers and practical workshops covering a number of topics aimed at providing participants with the knowledge and skills to achieve competencies to enhance their employment prospects within the community recreation industry. Barbra has also served a term on the PLA Vic/Tas Regional Council. Barbra holds a Bachelor of Arts in Recreation and a Masters in Sport Business.
Eve Craker - Generate
With over 5 years local government experience, Eve has been involved in 3 nationally recognised projects including the North Adelaide Dog Park, the Bonython Park Playspace and the Active Ambassador program. Projects such as these culminated in her winning Adelaide City Council's Employee of the Year and the 2015 PLA Emerging Leader Award. Eve is currently employed as a Sport and Recreation Planner at Logan City Council and is focusing on further developing her skill set. Eve is proficient in community engagement, physical activity programming, project management, sport and recreation planning, grant management and grant writing.
Eve is always willing to share her learnings and has authored 2 Australasian Parks and Leisure journal articles whilst currently working on launching the Generate Network in Australia for young industry professionals.
Eve has a Bachelor of Sport and Recreation Management and a Diploma of Project Management.