Australian Fulbright Alumni Association (AFAA)

Panel discussion: Where do we need leadership most?

The aim of the panel discussion is to highlight where leadership is most need, and how we can fill those gaps.  The panel will consist of Fulbright alumni from diverse backgrounds. Each panelist has been asked to speak for 5 minutes, answering the question "what are the largest gaps that you see in leadership today, and how do you think we can fill these gaps".  After we hear from each panelist, we will then open the floor to questions from the audience and engage in a lively debate. Details of the panelists are below (more to come so visit this page regularly).

Charles SampfordProfessor Charles Sampford has been combining law, ethics, politics and economics since his Oxford D Phil. As Griffith’s Foundation Dean of Law from 1991, he established the curriculum and research culture that, in its 25th year earned the Law School a Shanghai global ranking of 38 in the world. From 1998 - 2004, he was Foundation Director of the Key Centre for Ethics, Law, Justice and Governance and from 2004-10 he was the Convenor of ARC GovNet (the only ARC centre or network in law or governance). Since September 2004, he has been the Director of the Institute for Ethics, Governance and Law established at the recommendation of the UN University.  He has written over 150 articles and chapters and has completed 32 books and generated over $20m in research funding. In 2008, his work on ethics and integrity systems was recognized by the ARC as one of the 20 researchers across all disciplines in the ARC’s first 20 years who had had the greatest impact. In 2000 he was one of the two Australian senior Fulbright awardees (taken at Harvard).

Melanie Poole is the Director of Engagement at the Federation of Community Legal Centres, and is also a campaigns and strategy consultant. Before joining the Federation, Melanie was a Senior Advisor for the Australian Council of Trade Unions, and led the ACTU’s civil society engagement. Melanie was previously CARE International’s Senior Advocacy Advisor the United Nations in New York, a post she held after a decade in international development, including country office work in Kenya and Pakistan. Melanie is also a campaigns and strategy consultant, with previous clients including Amnesty International, the CPSU, Sum of Us, the Human Rights Law Centre, GetUp, All Out and Just Leadership USA. During her time in New York, Melanie was active in civil liberties campaigns, and chaired the Stonewall Policy Alliance, an LGBTI advocacy organisation that works with homeless LGBTI youth.

Melanie holds a Masters in Public Policy from New York University which she completed as an Anne Wexler – Fulbright scholar, and Arts and Law degrees from the Australian National University.



Dr Vanessa Adams is a researcher and lecturer in Conservation Biology at Macquarie University. Her research explores how to plan for development and conservation goals conjointly with a focus on how new market mechanisms, such as carbon offsets, may be leveraged for dual objectives such as livelihood provisioning and biodiversity conservation.  She hopes that by teaching conservation biology she can influence the next generation of conservation scientists and ultimately improve on ground conservation. She’s passionate about providing leadership on issues of Conservation, Science and the Environment. This passion has led her to sit on a range of Academic and Society boards and most recently she has taken on the role of President for Society for Conservation Biology Oceania and Treasurer for the Australian Fulbright Alumni Association. Vanessa holds a PhD in Conservation and Economics from James Cook University and was a Fulbright Scholar to the University of Queensland in 2004.

Professor Ted Lefroy is an agricultural scientist. After working for 15 years in extension and rural development in Australia and Papua New Guinea he held research positions exploring the integration of conservation and production in agricultural landscapes with state departments of agriculture in Queensland and Western Australia, the CSIRO and the University of Western Australia. In 2003 Ted was awarded a Eureka Prize for research into indigenous crop plants and is currently the Director of the Centre for Environment at the University of Tasmania. Ted was a Fulbright Scholar at the Interdisciplinary School of Arts and Sciences at the University of Washington in 2016. 




Australia Fulbright Alumni Association. ACT Registered No. A01934. ABN 99 730 723 674. PO Box 218, Cammeray NSW 2062

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