Governance and Leadership Our College

Governance

St Rita’s College is a public company limited by guarantee, governed under the Ministry of Mercy Partners – the Member Company. St Rita’s College was entrusted to Mercy Partners by the Queensland Congregation of the Presentation Sisters on 27 May 2014. As a Ministry of Mercy Partners, the Mission, Vision and Pillars of St Rita’s College and faithfulness to the teachings of the Catholic Church continue under the Presentation tradition.

The Board of Directors of St Rita’s College Limited is appointed by the Member Company (Mercy Partners) to govern the College under delegated authority in the areas of education, industrial, financial, property and employment responsibilities and to plan for the ongoing development of the College. The Board has two committees; Finance, Risk and Facilities and Governance. There is also two standing committees of Remuneration and Succession Planning.

The Member and Directors appoint the Principal and delegate the day to day running of the College to that position.

Mr Graham McManus (Chair)
Mrs Erin Bledsoe
Ms Kirstie Day
Mrs Catherine Dunbar
Mr John Fraser
Ms Elizabeth Gaber
Sr Patsy Grundy, pbvm
Dr Gordon Howell
Mrs Annette McMullan
Ms Lee McLean
Mr Peter Selwood

Mr Graham McManus (Chair)

Mr Graham McManus (Chair), B.Bus Accy, MBA, AICA

Mr Graham McManus is a Partner in international Accounting and Consulting firm Grant Thornton. He leads their Corporate Finance and Strategy practice in the Brisbane office and has had over 25 years’ experience in senior finance and management positions across a broad range of multi-national and Australian listed corporations. Graham served for five years on the Finance and Facilities Committee of St Rita’s College until his daughter graduated in 2015 and is passionate about seeing the College grow, prosper and extend the impact of its good works in education and more broadly in the community.

Mrs Erin Bledsoe

Mrs Erin Bledsoe, BEcon (Hons), BCom 

Erin is a past student of St Rita’s College. She is an Economist, holding a Bachelor of Economics (Hons) and a Bachelor of Commerce from The University of Queensland. She currently works for Shell Australia as Head of Regulatory Affairs and Compliance for the Australian Energy Marketing and Power business. Prior to joining the energy sector, Erin spent a number of years as an Economist working for the Federal Department of the Treasury on microeconomic and financial sector reform. On returning to Brisbane, she held numerous roles in the energy sector and had the opportunity to represent major corporations on energy and greenhouse policy and influence the national policy agenda. She is passionate about empowering women in the workplace, particularly in areas with lower female participation. In her spare time, Erin enjoys reading and playing tennis. She is married to James and they have two sons.

Ms Kirstie Day

Ms Kirstie Day, LLB

Kirstie is a Queensland Law Society Accredited Family Law Specialist and currently works as a Director of Naughton McCarthy Family Lawyers. Having completed her secondary education at St Rita’s College, Kirstie undertook a Bachelor of Laws at the Queensland University of Technology before commencing her Articles of Clerkship in a boutique family law firm. Kirstie has over 15 years of experience in all aspects of family law, including complex financial matters. Kirstie is a strong and passionate supporter of women and particularly enjoys her mentoring relationships with young professional women.

Mrs Catherine Dunbar

Mrs Catherine Dunbar, BA, DipEd, MA Ed, Cert IV (Christian Ministry and Theology)

Catherine was born and educated in Brisbane and was taught by the Presentation Sisters at Our Lady of Angels in Wavell Heights and at St Rita’s College. She undertook a Bachelor of Arts and a Diploma of Education at the University of Queensland before commencing as a teacher at Cavendish Road High School. After marrying her husband Peter, they moved to the Burkedin District where Catherine transferred to the local High School. In her second year there Catherine was promoted to Assistant Principal, in charge of the wellbeing/behaviour management of the female students and acting History Coordinator. From there Catherine and Peter moved to Rockhampton where they had their three children and Catherine took time out from teaching to be a full time mother. When her youngest child started kindergarten, she accepted a role running a personal development program for ‘at risk’ students at the local High School until a change in government policy brought such programs to an end. Catherine then began teaching at Rockhampton Grammar School where she became Head of Languages and Performing Arts and acted as Deputy Principal on occasions. In 2002, Catherine was appointed Deputy Principal at St Ursula’s Yeppoon and completed her Master of Education. In 2005 she was appointed Principal and held that position until 2020. Catherine now works as a consultant in education.

Mr John Fraser

Mr John Fraser BA LLB

John Fraser has been a Barrister since 1985. He specialises in criminal defence work both in trial and in appellate courts. John was admitted to practice as a Barrister in 1985. He worked for the Commonwealth Department of Public Prosecutions for a number of years and later for the Queensland Department of Public Prosecutions as a Senior Crown Prosecutor. John then worked as a senior in House Counsel at Queensland Legal Aid, often in complex criminal cases. 

Since 2002 John has practiced at the private bar in Brisbane, practicing almost exclusively in criminal law. He has appeared in over 400 jury trials and has conducted a significant number of appeals in the Court of Appeal (Queensland) and in other courts exercising appellate jurisdiction. He has appeared in the Mental Health Court, in coronial inquiries, disciplinary hearings and in relation to applications brought pursuant to the Dangerous Prisoners (Sexual Offenders) Act.

John has appeared in a wide variety of cases including murder, manslaughter, attempted murder, serious drug cases including lengthy trafficking trials, fraud and sexual assault and sexual abuse cases as well as Commonwealth cases. He has appeared in application brought pursuant to the Dangerous Prisoners (Sexual Offender) Act and has appeared in the Mental Health Tribunal/Court. John has appeared in coronial inquiries and disciplinary hearings, and has also accepted briefs to appear and has appeared in family law and civil matters.

He has appeared in New South Wales, the Australian Capital Territory and Tasmania.

John is admitted to practice in Queensland, New South Wales, the Australian Capital Territory and the High Court of Australia.

Ms Elizabeth Gaber

Elizabeth Gaber MIL, Grad Dip Ed (Secondary), Grad Cert RE, BSc

Elizabeth Gaber is currently on the College Leadership Team at St Patrick’s College Shorncliffe as the Dean of Administration and Business Intelligence.  Her 20+ years of experience in education has spanned the private, Catholic education and comprehensive sectors including all girls, all boys and coeducational learning contexts. 

She is passionate about improving student outcomes, specifically through improving teaching and learning practises; hence her completion of a Masters of Instructional Leadership at the Graduate School of Education, University of Melbourne.  Her current role provides her with the opportunity to develop a culture of data informed practice while also creating curriculum and timetabling structures that provide the best opportunity for boys’ educational outcomes.

She is an avid reader of educational research literature and enjoys using her time away from work for running and hiking.

Sr Patsy Grundy, pbvm

Sister Patsy Grundy, pbvm, BEd, MA (Theology)

Sister Patsy Grundy is a Presentation Sister and past student of St Rita’s College.  She has been on the Congregational Leadership team of the Presentation Sisters since 2014.

Sister Patsy entered the Presentation Novitiate at Manly on leaving school and did her Teacher training at the former McAuley College.  She taught in Brisbane and Rockhampton Dioceses for 13 years before stepping into the role of Director for Initial Formation for the Presentation Sisters. During this time, she dually held the roles of Assistant Principal Religious Education at Graceville school and St Joseph’s Nudgee Junior College, worked with students at Banyo Seminary and students at St Laurence’s College, and worked with the Queensland Corrective Services unit as an Official Visitor to the Sir David Longland high security prison at Wacol.

Sister Patsy has also had roles as Pastoral Associate for the Rochedale parish, spent six years in Bowen as Pastoral Leader. She undertook two years further theological study in Sydney before being assigned to Toowoomba for twelve years as Pastoral Leader.

Sister Patsy holds a Bachelor of Education and a Masters of Theology.

Dr Gordon Howell

Dr Gordon Howell, B.AppSc., B.Sc (Hons), Dip Ed, Grad Dip Com Comp, MBA, EdD, MACS, MAICD

Dr Gordon Howell has in excess of 25 years’ experience within education and technology management. He holds an MBA in technology management and a Doctorate which investigated academic adoption and use of technology.

He is the former Director Learning Environments and Technology Support at Queensland University of Technology. In this role Gordon was responsible for the technology deployment in the $230 million Science and Engineering Centre at QUT’s Gardens Point Campus, and the technology brief for the Education Precinct at Kelvin Grove Campus. Previous roles have been Research Fellow (UQ) for the ALTC-funded Next Generation Learning Spaces Project which investigated the nexus between pedagogy, technology, and space; Director ITS and Associate Director Client Support Services at ACU.

Mrs Annette McMullan

Mrs Annette McMullan, B Laws, B Nursing, Grad Dip (Legal Practice) 

Annette is currently fulfilling a 12-month appointment as the President of the Mental Health Review Tribunal having previously been appointed to the position of Chief Legal Counsel, Queensland Health in 2011. In addition to her legal qualifications, Annette holds a Bachelor of Nursing having practiced as a Registered Nurse and Midwife for over 15 years prior to her admission to the Supreme Courts of Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory as a Solicitor. Following her admission as a Solicitor, Annette worked as a Solicitor for Crown Law and later was appointed as In-House Solicitor for the Metro North Hospital and Health Service. Annette was appointed to the Council of St Aidan’s Anglican Girls’ School in 2015 and is a St Rita’s College Alumnae.

Ms Lee McLean

Lee is a 35-year veteran of the Australian communications industry, the last 12 years as a member of the Australian senior leadership team with global public relations firm Professional Public Relations (PPR). Lee develops and leads proactive communications campaigns which promote goods, services or a cause; educate stakeholders; motivate action; or grow a brand.

Lee’s reputation management skills help prepare and guide organisations for potential issues.  She is also a reputable communications trainer designing and delivering programs in public speaking, media interviews and communications writing.

Lee is a Fellow of the Public Relations Industry of Australia and has represented the association through Board positions, conference presentations and positions on Awards judging panels.

Mr Peter Selwood

Mr Peter Selwood, Diploma of Financial Planning, Bachelor of Business - Accounting, Grad Dip (Health Administration and Information Systems, MBA, FCPA, FAICD

Peter has been employed by the Archdiocese of Brisbane since 1990 first as the General Manager of the Archdiocesan Development Fund and since 2001 as the Executive Director of Centacare. Centacare is a large social services provider for disability and aged care, child care, family services and chaplaincy.

Peter has served on many boards and committees including boards of Yourtown 2002-2011, Catholic Superannuation and Retirement Fund 2003-2014 and Mercy Health and Aged Care Central Queensland 2016-2019. He has also served on Finance Committees for several independent Catholic Schools and is currently Chair of the Marist College Ashgrove Advisory Council.

Prior to being employed by the Archdiocese Peter worked in commercial finance and merchant banking.

Peter is a fellow of CPA Australia and a fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Peter is married and has four children.

College Leadership Team

Principal: Mrs Dale Morrow BA, Dip Ed, Grad Dip Ed, MEd (Leadership), MA (Theology)

Deputy Principal – Studies: Mrs Maree Trims BEd, Grad Cert (Religious Education), MEd (Leadership)

Deputy Principal – Students: Ms Catherine Allen BA, Grad Dip Ed (Secondary), Cert III Theology, MA (Religious Education, Theology)

Assistant Principal – Mission: Mrs Erica Qureshi BA, BEd

Assistant Principal – Learning and Teaching: Mr Martin Lobb BEd, Dip T

Business Manager: Mr Edward Gleeson BEcon, BCom, CPA, CIP