Our Team

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Mick Boyce - Non Executive Director

Mick Boyce’s qualifications include a Diploma of Agriculture from Hawkesbury and a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Queensland. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, a Local Government Auditor, and a Fellow of the Institute of Company Directors. Mick was the founding partner of the successful country accounting firm of Boyce Chartered Accountant, and is a director of Monbeef Pty Ltd, Birdsnest, Hazeldean Pty Ltd and Namoi Cotton Cooperative Ltd. He is also Chairman of Fugen Hardware Group and past Chair of Winifred West Schools. Mick has strong local community interests in the Monaro Early Intervention Service and Country Education Foundation of Australia.

Gabrielle Curtin - Chair and Non Executive Director

Gabrielle Curtin is the Executive Officer, Safety People & Services at Snowy Hydro Limited and has a long career in senior human resource and change executive roles. She is the Chair of Winifred West Schools and a non-executive director of the Qantas Foundation and headspace, Australia’s premier youth mental health foundation. Gabrielle has also previously served on the Girl Guides NSW/ACT board, ACCESS EAP board and various committees at UNSW and the University of Sydney. Gabrielle grew up in country NSW and is passionate about education and in particular making it accessible to all particularly those in regional and rural locations.

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Praveena Karunaharan - Non Executive Director

Praveena Karunaharan is a governance, risk and compliance specialist with over 15 years’ experience in assisting organisations to navigate and manage organisational and regulatory change. In her prior role as Director at a professional services firm, she advised organisations in the not-for-profit, educational and financial sectors on building sustainable and effective governance and risk programs. Praveena is currently the Head of Regulatory Compliance at Snowy Hydro and a member of the Habitat for Humanity Australia Board Risk Committee and the Natiyanjali Dance Foundation Board. She previously served on the Saiva Manram Board and the Rural Community Development Program (RCDP - Nepal) Advisory Committee, both of which focus on community-centric development and self-sufficiency.

Dean Lynch - Non Executive Director

Dean Lynch has been the Mayor of the Cooma Monaro Shire since 2009, and is the current Administrator of the Snowy Monaro Regional Council. Dean sits on the NSW Government Joint Regional Planning Panel and is Chairperson of numerous Council and Community committees. Married with two children, Dean has a daughter attending CSU so he understands the problems and costs associated with having to send a child away to university.

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Duncan Taylor - Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director

Duncan Taylor is a farmer who was also a founding director of agricultural assets management company, Growth Farms Australia. Duncan is a Member of the NSW TAFE Commission Board, and sits on the TAFE NSW Culture, Performance and Reward Committee and Academic Innovation Committee. He is also the Immediate Past President of the Isolated Children’s Parents’ Association of New South Wales that seeks equity of educational opportunity for rural and remote families. Duncan sat on the Rural and Remote Education Advisory Group that advises the NSW Government and Department of Education on strategies to improve educational outcomes in rural and remote areas, and is a Committee Member of the Monaro Early Intervention Service.

Shannon Payten-McDonald - Coordinator

Shannon began working for the Cooma Universities Centre in 2015. She possesses a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature, and is furthering her studies with a Master of Arts in Writing through The University of New England. Shannon began working as Coordinator for the Country Universities Centre in 2017. She is passionate about bringing tertiary education on to rural and regional NSW, believing that each individual should have the opportunity to achieve their dreams.

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