© 2023 by Public Health Association of Australia.

Contact Us: events@phaa.net.au 


As keynote speakers are confirmed their information will be added below. 

Major General The Honourable Michael Jeffery, AC, AO(Mil), CVO, MC (Retd)

Chair, Soils For Life

Major General The Honourable Michael Jeffery, AC, AO(Mil), CVO, MC (Retd) was born in Wiluna, WA in 1937, Michael Jeffery graduated from the Royal Military College into Infantry, serving operationally in Malaya, Borneo, Papua New Guinea and Vietnam, where he was awarded the Military Cross and the South Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry. 


From 1993-2000 he was the Governor of Western Australia. In 2000 he established, in Perth, a not for profit strategic research institute – Future Directions International (FDI), which he continues to chair. From 2003 to 2008 he served as Governor-General of Australia where his key interests were in youth, education and sustainable agriculture.


He is Chairman of Soils for Life, the Australian Trachoma Alliance and the Constitutional Education Fund Australia.  Patron of numerous charitable organisations, he is also the National Advocate for Soil Health, a Prime Ministerial appointment.


Married to Marlena, he has four children, 10 grandchildren and enjoys golf, fishing, cricket and music.

Dr Rosemary Stanton

Visiting Fellow, School of Medical Sciences, University of New South Wales

Dr Rosemary Stanton is a Visiting Fellow in the School of Medical Sciences, at UNSW. She was awarded an Order of Australia for her contributions to public health through nutrition, and was a member of the working group for the Dietary Guidelines and the Infant Feeding Guidelines. Over the last 50 years, Rosemary has authored many scientific papers, 32 books and over 3,500 articles for the popular press. She has urged us to think more holistically about food – where it comes from, how to grow or prepare it, how it affects health and how our choices impinge on climate change.

Professor John Coveney

Professor, Global Food, Culture and Health, Flinders University Adelaide

John Coveney is Professor of Global Food, Culture and Health at Flinders University. John has worked as a leading nutritionist and dietitian addressing regional, indigenous and international health issues. He is leader of the International Research Collective on Food, Culture and Health. He has research and education interests in cross-cultural public health nutrition, history of food and health, and food policy. John is currently leading a team researching the social and cultural factors that support shared meal events and social eating.

Professor Anna Peeters

Director, Institute of Healthcare Transformation, Deakin University

Anna is Director of the Institute for Healthcare Transformation, Professor of Epidemiology and Equity in Public Health, and Associate Director of the Global Obesity Centre, at Deakin University. She is Past President of the Australian and New Zealand Obesity Society and sits on national and international advisory boards and steering committees. In 2014 she was awarded the prestigious World Obesity Federation Andre Mayer Award for research excellence in obesity and a Churchill Award for innovative work in equity and population prevention.

Dr Katherine Cullerton

Research Fellow, School of Public Health, University of Queensland

Katherine Cullerton is a Research Fellow at the School of Public Health, University of Queensland and a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge. Her research focuses on increasing the agency of advocates to effectively influence public health nutrition policy and exploring whether it is ever acceptable for nutrition researchers to engage with the food industry. Katherine is also a qualified dietitian and has worked in a range of settings, including with Aboriginal communities, schools, in health promotion capacity building, tobacco control and as a national policy officer.

Dr Sue Booth

Academic, Flinders University

Dr Sue Booth is a dietitian with over 25 years experience and has worked in a range of settings; community health, private practice, government and universities. She has a PhD in public health nutrition and her thesis examined food insecurity amongst homeless young people in Adelaide. Her areas of research interest are food insecurity, alternative food systems and food policy.

Ms Deanne Minniecon

Indigenous Program Manager, Brisbane South PHN

Deanne is both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander decent and is currently the Indigenous Program Manager for Brisbane South PHN.  Deanne has worked in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and education for over 20 years across various sectors in both government and non-government organisations, including the community controlled health service, university sector, Diabetes Queensland, the Queensland Government (health, education and policy).  Deanne has led and advised on a number of state and national preventative health programs and strategies targeting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Dr Sarah James

Visiting Fellow, School of Regulation and Global Governance, The Australian National University

Sarah James is a human geography specialising in sustainable food systems for population health in a changing climate in Australia and the Pacific. Her research areas include policy and action to support the adoption of healthy and sustainable diets; food and nutrition security in Pacific Islands with a focus on disaster risk reduction and resilience; and urban food system planning. Her most recent book is titled ‘Farming on the Fringe: Peri-urban agriculture, cultural diversity and sustainability in Sydney’, published with Springer. Dr James is a visiting fellow with REGNET School of Regulation and Global Governance at the Australian National University, Canberra. She currently resides in Port Vila, Vanuatu.

Mr Joshua Gilbert

Josh is a Worimi man who uses Indigenous wisdom and values, alongside his environmental and agricultural knowledge to shape modern society. Professionally, Josh works as a Manager with PwC’s Indigenous Consulting. Outside of this formal work, Josh is a tireless advocate, creating change in the Indigenous, agricultural and environmental fields.


Personally, Josh is committed to environmental outcomes and maintaining his family’s agricultural legacy. For his advocacy, he has recently been recognised as a finalist for the ACT Young Australian of the Year award and the Australian Geographic Young Conservationist of the Year.


Through his work, Josh is emerging as a new voice for the future of Australia. He is creating change by breaking the stereotypes that currently exist and using Indigenous storylines, song lines and a strength-based narrative to bring people to new understandings of the value of the environment and agriculture, and therefore create meaningful change.

Ms Thea Soutar

CEO, Youth Food Movement

Thea is CEO of the Youth Food Movement (YFM), an organisation supporting young change makers to build a better, fairer food system. Thea worked in communications strategy with The Mulloon Institute and DoSomething’s FoodWise campaign, before running off to help build a budding food education start up at YFM. A devoted advocate of the power of safe spaces for young adults, she's interested in creating community across sectors, connecting those who grow with those who eat. 

An alumni of the Centre for Sustainability Leadership, Thea dreams of the day that all the cool kids snack on green beans and governments go to young people when they want to understand the world.​

Ms Katy Barfield

Founder & CEO, Yume

Katy Barfield is Australia’s leading food waste warrior. Instead of just talking about the issues, she has dedicated the past 10 years to doing something about it.  As the founding CEO of food rescue organisation SecondBite, she led the organisation through a period of intense growth, from collecting around 600kg of fresh produce in 2005 to redistributing over two million kilograms in 2012. In 2013, Katy launched Australia's first wholesale fruit and veg business, Spade and Barrow to keep Australian farmers on the land.


Determined to find a way to dramatically reduce the 3.9 million tonnes of food going to waste in the commercial food sector each year Katy created Yume, Australia's first surplus food marketplace in 2014. Yume enables food suppliers such as primary producers and manufacturers to sell their quality surplus products to buyers in the foodservice industry.


In 2017, Katy was awarded the Telstra Business Women Victorian For Purpose and Social Enterprise Award.

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