ACT Government Architect – Catherine Townsend FFRAIA
Catherine Townsend is co-founding director of Townsend + Associates Architects (est. 1993) and has practiced architecture in Canberra since graduating from University of Sydney in 1984.
Catherine is a Life Fellow of the Australian Institute of Architects and was elected President of the ACT Chapter in 2002 – the second woman to hold the position; and was re-elected for a second term in 2004. Her interest in representation and community issues led to positions on the 2003 Bushfire Recovery Taskforce, juror on the National Portrait Gallery Design Competition and Advisor for the Canberra International Arboretum Design Competition. She combines roles in industry regulation review and development, policy development and advocacy with the delivery of highly resolved architecture. Catherine maintains an active involvement in the wider role of architects in the urban environment and champions progress through intelligent design.
Her positions on the ACT Building Regulatory Advisory Committee and with the Architects Accreditation Council of Australia strengthen her focus on construction quality issues.
NSW Government Architect – Abbie Galvin
Abbie Galvin is the 24th NSW Government Architect. Abbie brings to the role 30 years of experience in architectural practice on a wide range of project types that have been highly awarded, published and recognised internationally.
Projects Abbie has led have been the recipient of more than 40 state, national and international architectural awards including the RAIA Lloyd Rees Award for Urban Design, the RAIA Jack McConnell Award for Public Architecture and the RAIA Blackett Prize for Regional Architecture, in addition to personal awards such as the AIA Marion Mahoney Griffin Prize for a distinctive body of work in the field of Architecture.
Abbie has been involved with the profession, the Institute of Architects, and the Board of Architects for many years, is a regular speaker at universities and conferences nationally and internationally and chairs and participates as an expert adviser in many design advisory panels, taskforces and awards juries.
Abbie’s work is focused on promoting the architectural quality of the built environment and leveraging the long-term benefits of great design through policy and advice. In recognition of her experience and contribution to the design industry, Abbie is a Life Fellow of the Australian Institute of Architects.
QLD Government Architect – Leah Lang
Leah Lang, an experienced Strategic Design Advisor and award-winning registered architect (FRAIA) has been appointed in September 2021 as the Queensland Government Architect in the lead up to the 2032 Olympic Games. Notably, she served a four-year tenure as the Gold Coast City Architect, a coveted role with significant responsibility, given the Gold Coast is Australia’s sixth-largest city and the nation’s second-largest Local Government Authority. Here, Leah oversaw city-wide design and planning policy and implementation — critical for the region’s sustainable growth and liveability which included supervising components of the final stages of the 2018 Commonwealth Games’ venues.
With over 25 years of experience Leah is undaunted by large-scale, complex and ambitious projects, and understands site-specific subtleties. Among her greatest strengths is Leah’s ability to unify disparate stakeholders and bring cohesion to oft-competing interests. Instrumental on both the Gold Coast Light Rail and $60.5 million Home of the Arts (HOTA) Gallery, Leah’s insights helped inform viability, minimise negative impacts on surrounding character landscapes and ensured the cultural precinct honoured the international competition-winning masterplan by ARM and Topotek1 as well as establishing initiatives like greening the city and elevating the region’s architectural quality.
Leah’s leadership and expertise is utilized through appointments to multiple high-profile design boards, panels and juries. Collectively, she leverages all of these roles to advocate and facilitate high-quality, place-responsive design and heritage outcomes.
SA Government Architect – Kirsteen Mackay
Kirsteen is the South Australian Government Architect, heading up the Office for Design and Architecture SA (ODASA), Architecture and Built Environment Directorate within the Attorney General’s Department. The Government Architect is responsible for providing design advice to government agencies, the State Planning Commission and the State Commission Assessment Panel.
As the Government Architect, Kirsteen is currently the Deputy Presiding Member of the Adelaide Park Lands Authority, and a board member of the Architectural Practice Board of South Australia (both ministerial appointments).
Kirsteen is an architect registered in the United Kingdom and South Australia, with experience of both public and private sector project delivery. She worked in private practice in London for over 15 years, before holding a position at the UK’s Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment advising the British Government.
In 2015, Kirsteen was appointed as the South Australian Government Architect, the first woman to hold the role in the 100 year history of the role nationwide. She has also recently become an Australian citizen.
VIC Government Architect – Jill Garner
Jill took the helm of the Office of the Victorian Government Architect in 2015, stepping into the role as a public advocate for architecture and design after more than twenty years in practice. As an architect, her practice – Garner Davis – has received numerous industry awards for delivering sensitive, crafted public and private work. As a design advisor and advocate in government, she strongly promotes the value of contextual, integrated design thinking and a collaborative approach across design disciplines.
Jill has taught at both RMIT and Melbourne University in architectural design, theory, and contemporary history; she is one of the first graduates of the innovative practice-based Masters by Design at RMIT; she is a past board member and examiner for the Architects Registration Board Victoria; in 2018 she chaired the national Committee for the Venice Architecture Biennale. She is a Life Fellow of the Australian Institute of Architects and in 2021 she was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia, recognizing her distinguished service to architecture, education, and professional associations.
WA Government Architect – Rebecca Moore
Rebecca Moore’s role as Western Australia’s Government Architect since September 2020 sees her provide leadership and strategic design advice to the State Government to improve the architectural quality of public buildings and open spaces. It is the Government Architect’s remit to improve built environments for WA.As Chair of the State Design Review Panel, Rebecca also plays a significant role in the design review of major city-changing projects and significant development proposals that are supporting the State’s economic recovery, this includes major government projects and those submitted as part of the COVID-19 economic stimulus program in WA.
A highly credentialled architect with more than three decades of experience both here in Perth and overseas, Rebecca has expertise in design, planning, heritage and construction. During her time as a practising architect, Rebecca was involved in projects in a wide range of domains including commercial, heritage, education and adaptive reuse. Her residential portfolio spans mixed-use, single and multi-residential developments and encompasses a ground-breaking award-winning townhouse development in inner city Perth.
Rebecca is a nationally accredited mediator and long-standing member of the State Administrative Tribunal, with a strong background in decision-making and mediation across a variety of complex development projects. She has held key roles in the Australian Institute of Architects and was for a number of years an examiner with the Architects Accreditation Council of Australia.
Rebecca is committed to delivering a built environment that gives Western Australians a sense of identity, belonging, and shared heritage without compromising functionality, sustainability or aesthetics.