Bridging issue #57

This first edition of Bridging for the year has a focus on Wetlands. It has bubbled up some important contributions from Fellows-in-the-field, and I commend their work to your attention.
2024 is the Trust’s 15th Anniversary year, and I’m thrilled to share details of two milestone events we are planning for May in Canberra. Flick to the Diary Dates for these announcements and save those dates in your own calendars.
And what a privilege to share this first month of my time at the Trust with the Chair-elect, Professor Emerita Cynthia Mitchell AO and to showcase her remarkable worklife journey later in this edition of Bridging.

Bridging issue #56

We often reflect on Peter Cullen’s vision, his ability to articulate the complex in plain, accessible language and on his courageous leadership. Peter was the master of the metaphor. We have many examples of these attributes, captured in the seminal publication “This Land Our Water” edited by our Patron Vicky Cullen. In this issue of Bridging we invite you to reflect on one of Peter’s most memorable speeches from the publication: “Science and Politics – Speaking Truth to Power”. Peter gave the speech at the North American Benthological Society Annual Conference in the USA, in June 2006, and I can imagine the impact it had on those present, as it will on readers today.

Bridging issue #55

One of the benefits of working for the Peter Cullen Trust is the regular excuse it gives to spend time immersed in Peter’s writings. Fifteen years on from his passing, I remain struck by the relevance of this work – full of vision, questions, challenges, provocations, and insights that remain as powerful and needed today as when he first spoke or wrote them.

Bridging issue #54

“Scholars tell us that “purpose”, both pragmatically and spiritually, is a declaration of why we exist. It is the cumulative effect of meaningful goals; the impact we want to have. It is our “why”.

In this edition of Bridging we launch our “why”, and illustrate it with a deep dive into the big issues confronting Australia’s water and environment leaders, including the conversations on National Water Reform and the Murray Darling Basin Plan, and the complex and existential challenges of planet earth through the eyes of Friends of the Trust, Professors Stuart Bunn and Emerita Cynthia Mitchell.”

Bridging issue #53

“Water – the Big Picture” has become our theme-by-default this issue, a reflection of the complexity and diversity of conversations, collaborations and provocations that we’ve shared over the past few months. It also resonates with the ramping up of Fellows’ engagement with and leadership of the Trust, part of an exciting maturing of our Fellows Network, and is consistent with the leadership challenge in front of the water and environment sector in this era of climate change.

Bridging Issue #51

Best wishes to all leaders for a productive 2023. May your leadership inspire, speak truth to power and pay it forward. Already this year is shaping as a critical year for your voice.

Bridging Issue #49

“Never waste a crisis”. Wise words. Our Chair, the Hon Karlene Maywald, adds a prerequisite: “be prepared, have a visionary plan”. Ensure you seize the right opportunity in a crisis. For an organisation, being prepared includes having a strategic succession plan and investing in leaders who are ready for the opportunities that future crises will present.

Bridging Issue #48

The energy. The excitement. The relief! Graduation week in Canberra is always special. May 2022 graduation week was extra, extra, special. A week full of inspiration with session 2 of the leadership program, the Fellows Professional Development Day, and the inaugural Chairperson’s Round Table.

Bridging Issue #47

My heart goes out to the people of Ukraine. Such suffering. Such inhumanity. It is hard to sit down and reflect on the challenges of today’s leaders in water and the environment, and not start by reflecting on the courage displayed by the Ukraine people, and indeed all people living in regions of armed conflict. May they be safe.