Project Numbat Committee
President - Tamara Wilkes-Jones
Tamara first became aware of numbats as a child watching the Nature of Australia documentaries but living in Victoria meant she wasn't going to see one in the wild. Her first sighting of a numbat was at Yookamurra sanctuary 2002 in South Australia now run by Australian Wildlife Conservancy. Her regular wild sightings became an addiction in 2007 soon after she moved to Western Australia predominately to experience the state's unique flora and fauna.
That day in 2007 was a 40+ degree day in the morning and in a Wandoo Woodland with little shade, friendly ticks and the only cool breeze provided by driving with the car window down, she was rewarded to see her first numbat on its hind legs on the side of road observing the surroundings. That's when her interest in numbats began and has continued to grow as she participates in Project Numbat, volunteers with Department of Parks and Wildlife, continues her woodland numbat experiences and inspires others to take an interest in the numbat.
Vice-President – Vacant
Treasurer – Su-Ann Drew
Not-for-profit organisations with a local Western Australian flavour have always been dear to Su-Ann's heart. Over the past 6 years, she has been actively involved in WA-based community work within a variety of contexts including education and social inclusion. Su-Ann decided to join the Project Numbat committee after doing some reading on Project Numbat’s website, falling in love with the beautiful creatures, and realising just how critical protecting this beloved animal is.
Su-Ann is currently studying postgraduate accounting at Curtin University, but has a background in the human biological sciences with a PhD and BSc (Hons) from UWA. She is looking forward to putting her accounting studies to good use as the Treasurer for Project Numbat. As a “Numbat-newbie”, Su-Ann is enjoying learning more about this special Australian mammal through the wonderful work that Project Numbat does and she hopes to have her own Numbat close encounter one day!
Secretary –Amy Robey
Growing up with parents who rehabilitated injured wildlife, Amy has always had an interest in conservation. For a number of years after school however, she could not figure out what to do with her passion. She decided to go to uni and in mid 2014 graduated from UWA with a Bachelor of Science in Zoology and Conservation Biology. She then decided that she wanted to develop her research skills further and re-enrolled in Honours, which she has recently completed.
During her undergrad degree Amy began to do as much volunteer fieldwork as possible and, to date, has been lucky enough to be involved in a range of fauna trapping projects in areas such as the Pilbara, Dryandra Woodland, Rottnest Island, Busselton and Manjimup.
Amy is currently on the look-out for work that she is going to love, and until such an opportunity comes along she is filling her time volunteering for a number of organisations including WWF, the Munda Biddi Trail Foundation and Native Animal Rescue. These opportunities are allowing her to lend her skills to important not-for-profit organisations whilst learning about different industries and gaining additional skills.
Amy joined Project Numbat in order to help out a worthy cause and in the hope that it’ll allow her to see a numbat in the wild as she is yet to do this!
Karen Cavanough (Events)
Karen gave up her previous life, a long career in the WA public service, to pursue a passion of animal welfare and wildlife conservation. She has since studied veterinary nursing, completed degrees in conservation and in captive vertebrate management.
Her career change has seen her work as a vet nurse, zookeeper and volunteer on a number of wildlife trapping/monitoring and habitat revegetation programs. She is a current volunteer at Kanyana Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre and Committee Member for the Turtle Oblonga Rescue and Rehabilitation Network and has previously undertaken voluntary roles locally at Caversham Wildlife Park and the Kaarakin Black Cockatoo Conservation Centre, and overseas with the Orangutan Health Project, the Wildlife Friends Foundation of Thailand, Free the Bears and Animals Asia.
Karen joined Project Numbat to make a difference and help to conserve WA's unique mammal emblem. She has been a Project Numbat Member since 2010, joined our Committee in 2013 and helps to raise the profile of the numbat through coordinating our participation in community events.
Karen feels privileged to have attended numbat releases at Dryandra Woodland and participated in our recent numbat digging survey at Boyagin reserve. She has seen a few numbats in the wild, but is keen to get more up close and personal with the elusive little creatures in the future.
Jennie Carson (Merchandise)
Jennie has always had a love of the outdoors and has spent many hours walking through the beautiful bush surrounding Perth and her homeland of Canada. Now that she has a young family, she is keen to set an example for her children and to give back to the environment that has provided her with so much enjoyment over the years.
This will be Jennie’s first year on the committee as Merchandise Officer and she is excited to help raise awareness about Project Numbat and to help ensure the Numbat population can one day thrive in their natural habitat.
Eveline Masco (Media and Newsletter)
A deep passion for Australian wildlife was one of the main reasons for moving Down Under for Eveline, far far way from little old Belgium. As her husband and Eveline settled in Perth, they discovered they found themselves in the middle of the biodiversity hotspot.
Eveline first learnt about the numbat during a weekend trip to Dryandra. Determined to spot a numbat, they walked all the trails in the one weekend, unfortunately without any luck. The wonderful echidna that was willing to pose certainly made them feel much better. After that weekend they joined Project Numbat.
Eveline is currently responsible for the media contacts and produces the newsletter. "The more media attention we get to spread the word about the numbat's plight the better." Writing about other people's Numbat Adventures has made Eveline even more eager to spot one in the wild herself!
Gunther De Vos (Website - Memberships)
Gunther fell in love with Australia and its fascinating wildlife flicking through picture books as a kid in Belgium. This love brought Gunther and his wife to Australia for a first time in 2009. Four years later they moved to WA.
A weekend trip to Dryandra in March 2013 sparked their interest in the numbat. This interest intensified when Gunther started a Master in Environmental Science at UWA. Gunther loves exploring the Australian bush. He is proud to call Australia home now and he hopes his enthusiasm for the wonderful animals in WA such as the numbat is contagious and can help to protect those amazing creatures. Using his experience as a professional journalist, Gunther wants to spread the word about the numbat, the threats it's facing and the amazing work of Project Numbat.
Gunther joined Project Numbat in September 2014 and is responsible for the website and the membership program. You might also spot Gunther at Project Numbat's events wearing the Nurla outfit.
Hannah has always had a strong interest in the environment and conservation, especially of native Australian species. She studied Conservation Biology and Zoology at the University of Western Australia, and followed up with Honours, in the hope of gaining a job where she could contribute to wildlife conservation. Hannah was lucky enough to start working at Perth Zoo in 2014 as part of the Native Species Breeding Program. The first species she worked with was the Numbat, and she completely fell in love with them.
Hannah joined the Project Numbat committee so she could further contribute to Numbat conservation and raise awareness about the threatened species in the wider community. She is personally lucky enough to be around Numbats at work on a regular basis and she hopes that with the contribution of Project Numbat, everyone will one day be able to witness Numbats on a regular basis, in the wild.