The Regional Australia Institute team have a wealth of experience in regional research, policy-making and community consultation.
Meet the team below.
Chief Executive Officer
Jack has worked with the RAI since its inception in 2012 and was appointed CEO in July 2015. In previous roles as a consultant and public servant, Jack contributed to major regional reform in water, climate change, indigenous issues and industry. Originally from Paterson in the lower Hunter Valley of NSW, he now lives in the hills west of Canberra.
DR KIM HOUGHTON
General Manager Policy & Research
Kim manages the RAI’s policy and research portfolio to ensure the Institute’s work has practical application and supports a better policy environment and more vibrant regional economies. Having worked on regional economic development in Australia for almost 20 years, Kim has a passion for engaging, motivating, informing and connecting entrepreneurial business owners.
DR KYLIE BOURNE
Lead Researcher, Regions in Transition
BA, MAE, PhD (with Distinction)
Kylie is a researcher with extensive experience in knowledge brokering and research communication. She has worked in the policy space across the public, not-for-profit and higher education sectors. Kylie has published academic research and media commentary on a variety of social and public policy related issues.Kylie is passionate about regional issues. She lives in regional Australia and volunteers as an Ethics teacher and coordinator in NSW schools in the Yass Valley region.
DR LEONIE PEARSON
Leader, Major Research Projects (Economist)
BSc(Hons), PhD, GAICD
With specialisation in integrating economics with social-ecological context, Leonie’s role with the RAI builds on her earlier work investigating why communities adapt and transform to achieve sustainable futures. Having lived in both regional and metropolitan Australia, as well as overseas, Leonie is passionate about working with people in the regions and understanding ‘the local story’.
Partnerships & Communications
General Manager Strategy & Partnerships
Liz’s primary purpose at the RAI is to make a difference through providing leadership, engagement, information and connectivity. Heralding from country NSW, she understands the issues impacting regional Australia and has designed and executed programs across Australia to engage in economic and social issues affecting our regions.
Editor in Chief
BBus (Major in Journalism)
Amanda is a media professional with more than 20 years industry experience across Australia. Having worked for media organisations, government, industry groups and agri-political organisations, Amanda has a true passion for, and understands, regional Australia.
Graphic Designer and Communications Assistant
Nina is passionate about visual communication and the power of distilling content into easy-to-digest graphics. She creates visual materials to complement RAI’s research and ensures everything is visually on-brand and presented in a memorable format.