Associate Vice-Presidents

Cairns and Far North Queensland Region – Ms Jodie Duignan-George

Associate Vice-Chancellor Jodie Duignan-George
Jodie Duignan-George

Jodie Duignan-George is the Associate Vice-President for the Cairns and Far North Queensland Region.

As head of the campus, Jodie is responsible for the management of the new Cairns CBD campus and is committed to working with community and industry to ensure that CQUniversity positively contributes to the region’s development through the establishment of mutually beneficial relationships and projects that make a difference.

CQUniversity Cairns offers a range of courses across many discipline areas including health, education, engineering and business. Jodie is always open to discussions with industry in relation to course development, course feedback, opportunities for partnerships around student placements and general research opportunities. Local research strengths include tourism, economic development, gambling research, Indigenous leadership and Indigenous health, along with access to the broader CQUniversity research network. The Cairns campus is also home to CQUniversity’s newly opened Centre for Tourism and Regional Opportunities (CTRO).

To make an appointment to see Jodie please contact Cairns campus reception on 07 4037 4777.

North Queensland and Hinterland Region – Professor Pierre Viljoen

Associate Vice-Chancellor Professor Pierre Viljoen
Professor Pierre Viljoen

Professor Pierre Viljoen is the Associate Vice-President for the Central Highlands, the Mackay-Whitsunday and the Townsville and North West Queensland Regions.

Pierre is responsible for the management of these campuses by fostering the image of the University, ensuring the goals and mission of the University are pursued in the local communities and ensuring the University plays a vital role in each the regions development.

New South Wales Region – Mr Shehan Thampapillai

Associate Vice-Chancellor Shehan Thampapillai
Shehan Thampapillai

Shehan Thampapillai is responsible for and oversees CQUniversity Australia's operations in New South Wales.

Shehan has responsibility for business growth and development, regional engagement, teaching and learning, research, capital works and the pastoral care of students and staff.

Shehan is an experienced leader who has spent the past 18 years’ within the international education sector where he has held various senior positions at private and government institutions in Australia and the United Kingdom.

Having spent 13 years in student recruitment and another five in business intelligence, Shehan brings a wealth of knowledge to help navigate CQUniversity through the complex and ever-changing landscape of tertiary education domestically and internationally.

As part of his wider role, Shehan also provides business intelligence within an international context to the wider university community. He also oversees the strategy of the international marketing communications and acquisition operations at CQUniversity.

More about the New South Wales Region.

Rockhampton Region – Ms Kim Harrington

Associate Vice-Chancellor Kim Harrington
Kim Harrington

Kim Harrington is the Associate Vice-President (AVP) for the Rockhampton Region and is responsible for the operation of both CQUniversity campuses in Rockhampton and the large cohort of online students in the region.

Kim has been with CQUniversity since July 2012 in various roles including the Director of Queensland Centre for Professional Development, and Director of the Academic Unification Project within the CQU/CQ TAFE merger project. Kim also has extensive experience within Vocational education in Queensland including roles such as Director of Studies Faculty of Business & International; Leading  Vocational Teacher; and Head of Faculty.

Kim has extremely strong networks within the Rockhampton community which is valuable in her role as AVC (Rockhampton Region). In addition to her AVC duties, Kim continues in her role within the Industry and VET Division which involves business development and industry engagement.

More about the Rockhampton Region.

South Australia Region – Professor Sally Ferguson

Sally Ferguson standing in a library smiling
Sally Ferguson

Professor Sally Ferguson leads the team at CQUniversity Adelaide, and is also the Director of CQUniversity’s Appleton Institute. Sally has worked in the tertiary education sector for more than twenty years in teaching, research and leadership roles. With a research focus on sleep and biological rhythms, Sally has led to projects with government, community and industry partners addressing issue relating to shiftwork and non-standard hours, fatigue risk management and workplace countermeasures that support health and wellbeing. Sally holds a PhD, a Masters degree and a Bachelor of Science Honours.

More about the South Australia Region.

South East Queensland Region – Mr Chris Veraa

Chris Veraa sitting at a desk
Chris Veraa

Chris Veraa is the Associate Vice-President for the South East Queensland Region and oversees operations on the Brisbane campus, which hosts more than 1,400 domestic and international students. He also holds the role of Director, Strategic Engagement at CQUniversity, with responsibility for corporate communications, alumni relations, advancement and the CQUniversity art collection. Chris is an experienced senior leader with a background in media, communications, public relations, student administration and student services. He holds an Executive Master of Business Administration and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Victoria Region – Mr Will Alderton

Associate Vice-Chancellor Will Alderton
Will Alderton

Will Alderton is the Associate Vice-President of the Victoria Region and is responsible for the management of this vibrant, city centre campus in Melbourne, which is home to students from around the world.

Will is keen to ensure that students benefit from everything that the city can offer in the form of career and volunteering opportunities, social activities and exposure to a range of diverse cultural experiences. With an increasing focus on community engagement and social enterprise opportunities, students and staff of the campus have opportunities to participate in activities that support the University’s core values of engagement and inclusiveness.

The campus specialises in business, management, public health, information technology and systems, and also runs several hands-on programs: sonography, engineering, and paramedic science. In regional Victoria, CQUniversity offers pathways into the Bachelor of Agriculture, and clinical skills labs and residential schools for the Bachelor of Nursing in Hamilton.

Contact: Will Alderton

More about the Victoria Region.

Western Australia Region – Professor Rob Brown

Associate Vice-Chancellor Rob Brown
Professor Rob Brown

Professor Rob Brown is the Associate Vice-President for Western Australia.

Rob is responsible for the management of the Perth CBD campus, the regional Study Hubs in Broome, Busselton and Karratha, and the ongoing partnership with the Geraldton Universities Centre. Rob is committed to working with the community and industry to establish mutually beneficial partnerships that contribute to the development of Western Australia.

Rob holds a doctorate in Higher Education Strategic Marketing, a Master in Education (TESOL) and a Master of Business Administration – bringing more than 25 years of high-level Australian universities experience to CQUniversity.

CQUniversity Perth offers a range of courses across many areas including sonography, echocardiography, hospitality, engineering and business. The Study Hubs in regional WA also provide additional personal support and services for students in those regions and respond to local education and training needs.

Rob is always open to discussions with industry and community leaders about how CQUniversity can respond to education, training and research opportunities in Western Australia and organise work placements for our students.

To make an appointment to see Rob please contact him via email

More about the Western Australia Region

Wide Bay Burnett Region – Luke Sinclair

Associate Vice-Chancellor Luke Sinclair
Luke Sinclair

Luke Sinclair is the Associate Vice-President (AVP) for the Gladstone and Wide Bay Burnett Regions.

In this role he has responsibility for the business development and growth of CQUniversity in these regions, fostering opportunities for regional engagement and research, and overseeing the pastoral care of students and staff.

In addition to his AVP duties, Luke works within the Learning and Teaching Services area managing Academic Pathways and Engagement which encompasses overseeing the credit and articulation applications and agreements with students and other institutions, as well as the implementation of a University-wide approach to Work Integrated Learning.

Luke is always keen to hear from industry and community leaders with regard to opportunities for how CQUniversity can engage further in terms of research, learning and placements for our students. Please contact him via email

More about the Wide Bay Burnett Region.