AWESOME Arts Board

Chair
Derry Simpson

Derry Simpson

Derry is a highly intuitive, well credentialed and award winning brand and communications strategist with a
passion for interactive, transformative ideas.

Currently Agency Leader and Head of Strategy and Planning at 303LOWE, Derry has over 15 years in the media
and marketing industry. As an expert in behavior change, Derry has worked with numerous not-for-profit
organisations over the years, both as a Board member and in a consultant capacity, assisting them to transform
their brands and succeed in today’s cluttered environment. A Mum of three little ones and an advocate for building
the creative capital in Western Australia.

Derry was thrilled to be appointed to the AWESOME Board. She is excited about the wonderful opportunity that it presents for her to put her
skills to good use in an area she is passionate about.

 

Sven Sorenson

Sven Sorensen

Sven’s work has been divided in the last 18 months between supporting drama education at a senior school
level and developing with teachers in WA the Western Australian Arts Curriculum for Pre-primary to Year 10.
This last project has been adapted from the ACARA Australian Curriculum for the Arts.

Sven has also worked with DramaWest on the executive, developing professional learning and resources for
drama teachers since 2008. He has also been a chair of the board for an IPS primary school in the hills.
Sven remains a member of the teachers group for Black Swan State Theatre Company and works with, on occasion,
the pre-service teachers at Edith Cowan University. He is on the committee for Performing Arts Perspectives that
showcases every year outstanding performers from the Year 12 practical examinations for Dance, Drama and Music.
Sven also enjoys the challenge of doing corporate training using improvisation in effective staff management and training. Sven is also an ICT
tragic and film/audiobook gourmand.

 

David Lee

David’s first stage experience was very traumatic… at least for a four year old!

Mr and Mrs Lee’s eldest son forgot all the words to Jesus Loves Me while performing solo in front of the Bethel
Baptist Church congregation in the Llynfi Valley, South Wales. This unfortunate event led to tears, followed by a
misspent youth dabbling in snooker, rock bands and socialism.

David partially recovered and spent the early part of his career working as a tradesman in Europe, the Middle East
and South East Asia, before coming to Australia in 1982. After completing a degree in Communications and Chinese
studies at Murdoch, David worked as a radio broadcaster, a trade unionist, a shire councillor, a best practice
consultant, mine manager, marketing director, chief executive officer and a political staffer.

David has also had a broad range of experience in working with community arts organisations. For the past seven years, David has been working
in the resource sector and continues to play music and broadcast on RTR FM.

David loves the energy, enthusiasm and professionalism of AWESOME and still harbours a dream that one day Willy Nelson will cover one of
his songs!

 

Nadia Mitsopoulos

rsz_nadias_baby_photo (1)

Nadia once dreamed of a career on the stage having enjoyed some theatre success during her high school years.

As a member of the WA Youth Theatre Company she was lucky enough to perform overseas. An experience she
cherishes to this day. It certainly provided her with the skills to carve out a successful career in the media as a
television journalist with a particular focus on politics.

Nadia started out as a 19-year-old journalist for GWN in Bunbury and Albany before returning to Perth and
moving to the Ten Network. She then headed overseas to satisfy her desire to see the world before settling in
London and working as a producer for Associated Press. Upon her return to Australia, she spent 13 years at
Channel 9 as its state political reporter.

These days Nadia has switched to live radio and works at 720 ABC Perth as a journalist and producer on the Mornings program. She has
never lost her love of theatre and jumped at the chance to be part of the AWESOME team. She loves the energy of AWESOME and its
commitment to engage and challenge young minds. Nadia has a 9-year-old boy and 7-year-old girl who are big fans of AWESOME and they
can’t wait for the next instalment.

 

Luke Blackbourn

Luke Board Web

Luke has enjoyed a number of wonderful opportunities to live and work around the world. As a child he lived in the
UK for three years, but travelled through Europe constantly and completed his schoolwork on the road. A stint as
an exchange student, a move from Melbourne to Perth and overseas roles have continued to propel his roaming
lifestyle.

Luke’s theatrical pursuits peaked in his school theatre as a teenager, but he has maintained support for and
involvement with many community-based organisations, through his long-term community engagement work.

Now with three children dominating his every spare moment, Luke is keen to build on the amazing work of the
AWESOME team to date and continue to provide ground-breaking opportunities for fun, learning and expression.

 

Mary Bretherton

Mary Board

Mary is a retired tax accountant who has spent 40 years in the profession.

Over the years Mary has raised three sons and has served on various kindergarten and school committees/boards
and recently spent 11 years on her local church finance committee.

Mary has always enjoyed all types of theatre and performance and now as a grandmother of 3 young girls, is keen to
be part of a team who are dedicated to providing exciting arts and cultural activities for children that encourage the
development of their young creative abilities.

 

Anna Pearce

Growing up in the south west of WA, Anna has very fond memories of the experiences she enjoyed as a little girl on
her family farm in the Cowaramup region where she was grounded by strong family values, a sense of community,
and the freedom of the Aussie beach and bushland. 

Throughout her extensive career in strategy, brand, marketing and customer experience, Anna has partnered with
some of WA’s best known creative talent bringing to life award-winning brand and product campaigns, activations
and events. In her current role as General Manager, Member Experience at customer-owned P&N Bank, Anna loves
being part of an organisation that puts people at the heart of everything they do.  She never tires of seeing a
well-conceived strategy be brought to life by an engaging, creative concept that resonates with the audience.

As Mum to three active teenagers, Anna and her husband Stephen have keenly participated in their kids’ development and education, believing
that fun, shared experiences are the glue that keep the family together. 

Anna is delighted to be a part of the AWESOME community and looks forward to becoming a champion for the creative and engaging
experiences AWESOME offers to WA kids and families.

 

Patron
Professor Jonathan Carapetis (Telethon Kids Institute) 

Jonathan is a paediatrician, researcher and Director of Telethon Kids Institute. He has been a patron of AWESOME
Arts since 2015. This combination of skill and experience allows him to blend his passion for improving the health
and wellbeing amongst disadvantaged kids with his interests in the arts.

During university, Jonathan was a frequent visitor to Africa where his father lived. It was in Tanzania where he saw
first-hand the challenges facing many local families. Their struggle with poverty and major health crises such as HIV,
malaria, pneumonia and malnutrition fuelled him through his studies and had a major influence on his future career
path.

In his dim dark past, he mis-spent many years as an amateur thespian, and wonders to this day whether he should have followed his mates into professional acting. He watched them go on to become famous with Working Dog Productions, while he continued with intensive study to
become a doctor… Sigh…

Jonathan and his family continue to be strong supporters of the arts as well as health focused organisations who advocate for social justice and
equity.