Who we are

Ella3Ella Goninan – President & Secretary

I have been living in the northern rivers for 16 years. I chose to move here to raise my daughter, as I was inspired by the alternative, family-inclusive and community culture. I am dedicated to social and environmental health. I was a part of the management team at the Bentley Protectors Camp in 2014. This experience blew my mind and heart open and showed me a positive unified way to engage with the state of affairs we currently have on our doorstep. I now choose to direct my attention and passion to Mullum’s sustainable future, with a desire to support mass national and global mobilisation to relieve the plight of our behaviours to the contrary.

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Dave Rawlins – Vice President

From a young age I was instilled with an awe of the natural world. This lead to an interest in sustainability, a Zoology degree, a strong sense of environmental justice and campaigning for forest protection, opposing uranium mining and more recently standing up against local biodiversity loss and CSG. However, what I find most rewarding is working together with my Mullumbimby community to find and deliver sustainable initiatives. Being involved with local Landcare since 2002 and running my own ecological restoration business for over 10 years has lead to many inspiring and fruitful projects. I see the exciting possibilities that a group like COREM can achieve and the part we all can play to turn the fossil fuel industry on it’s head.

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Rob Passey – Treasurer

I moved up north with my family 7 years ago and was inspired by the potential for the area to be a world-leader in developing and implementing sustainable energy. In an era where leadership is sorely lacking at the upper levels of government, it is up to the community to lead. I see community-owned renewable energy as an excellent way to achieve change because such projects provide a focus for the community to rally around, as well being as a valuable source of education. COREM is a fantastic group and we work really well together. We’ve come up with some great initiatives and the response by the Mullum community has been absolutely amazing. This makes a huge difference because it makes you feel like what you’re doing will be strongly supported by the community, which is what we need to succeed. In my ‘spare’ time I work at CEEM at the University of NSW, IT Power (Australia) and the Australian PV Institute

Svea Pitman – COREM Mullum Mini Hydro Co-Coordinator

Svea is an Environmental Scientist who recently completed a Masters of Engineering in Renewable Energy. She has been an environmental activist for over 20 years and worked in remote indigenous community development for over a decade before moving back to the Byron Shire. Svea is passionate about getting the Laverty’s Gap hydro up and running again.

Kamala Rose – Secretary and Volunteer Coordinator

I studied environmental science 40 years ago at a time when it wasn’t a very well known discipline.  Having learned about “The Greenhouse Effect” which is what we called climate change back in the early 1980’s, I have had an interest in environmental issues and sustainability for decades.  This is one of the reasons that prompted me to relocate my family from California and buy an organic farm in Wilson’s creek 18 years ago.  Our children are now grown up and thus I am grateful to have the time to dedicate myself to what I am most passionate about.   In addition to working with COREM, I co-facilitate girl’s coming of age groups.  I feel so grateful to be living in such a beautiful place on our one blue planet and to be working with like minded people!

Katrina ShieldsKatrina Shields – Sustainability Educator

Katrina Shields has until recently been the Sustainability Education Coordinator at Byron Community College for the past 7 years. She has worked on a number of research and educational programs related to energy efficiency: such as the national Green House Around the Corner project aimed at improving energy efficiency in community facilities and adult learning centres. She is co-author of the Sustainability for Educators book and author of In The Tigers Mouth – A social action guide.  She is a member of the Sustain Northern Rivers Energy Working group and advisor to tertiary students of the SIT study abroad program