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New Zealand Police - National Forensic Services

Inspector John Walker - ANZFEC Chair

John has been involved in police forensic sciences for over 25 years, initially as a practitioner then as a manager. In his role as Manager: National Forensic Services, he has responsibility for the oversight, maintenance, and development of NZ Police forensic capability in areas such as forensic training, document examination, armoury, crime scene examination, digital imaging, forensic medicine, fingerprints, Police forensic photography, and DNA. His role also involves identifying developing forensic science technologies and techniques that may have value in the New Zealand context.

PathWest Laboratory Medicine, Western Australia

Dr Gavin Turbett - Head of Department  -  Deputy Chair

After completing his PhD in 1992, Gavin was involved in cancer research for approximately six years before moving into forensic science. Gavin is the Principal Scientist of the Forensic Biology Laboratory at PathWest Laboratory Medicine WA, and has held that role since 1999. He is an Adjunct Associate Professor at Curtin University, Murdoch University and the University of Western Australia. He has published 34 scientific papers. He lectures regularly to university students, as well as to specialist and non-specialist groups about forensic biology and DNA profiling. In 2011, he became a Founding Fellow of the Faculty of Science, Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia. He is also an executive member of Senior Managers of Australia & New Zealand Forensic Laboratories (SMANZFL) and is the mentor to the Biology Specialist Advisory Group (BSAG).

Australian Federal Police (AFP) and ACT Policing

Dr Simon J. Walsh PSM - Chief Forensic Scientist

Dr Simon Walsh is currently employed as the Australian Federal Police (AFP) Chief Forensic Scientist, having joined this organisation in 2006. In this role Simon leads and manages the AFP Forensics laboratory-based disciplines and portfolio support functions and is responsible for the AFP forensic science capability, delivering excellence in laboratory management, science policy and long-term capability planning. Simon also holds the role of AFP National Disaster Victim Identification (DVI) Commander and has command responsibilities in major operations. Prior to joining the AFP Simon held a variety of professional and academic positions in forensic science having begun his forensic career in 1994.

ChemCentre, Western Australia - Forensic Science Laboratory

Mr Colin Priddis - Director

Colin has over 30 years’ experience practicing and administering the delivery of forensic analytical services and expert opinion to clients involved in the administration of law enforcement, security, industry integrity and community health in WA. The forensic services at ChemCentre are focussed on human toxicology (post mortem, traffic, crime, workplace and community health related), animal toxicology (Racing Industry), controlled substances (drug seizures, clan labs and drug profiling) and chemical criminalistics (trace evidence involving accelerants, explosives, soils, fibres, glass, GSR, metals, paint, polymers etcetera). Colin maintains active interests in the detection and toxicology of new psychoactive substances, drug profiling, clandestine laboratory investigation and creating solutions for collating and interpreting large complex sets of analytical data particularly in the areas of Chem Crim and Illicit Drugs.

Forensic Science Service Tasmania (FSST)

Mr Laszlo Szabo - Director

Laszlo was appointed the Director of Forensic Science Service Tasmania in 2008.  FSST provides a wide range of forensic services, including biological examination, blood stain pattern interpretation, DNA profiling, toxicology (coronial, criminal and drugs-in-drivers), illicit drug testing, and glass, fibre, accelerant and explosive analysis.  Laszlo implemented forensic DNA profiling in Tasmania in 1990 and spent many interesting years as a forensic caseworker and in managerial roles associated with DNA profiling.

Forensic Science South Australia (FSSA)

Mr Chris Pearman - Director

Chris is Director of Forensic Science SA, which provides independent scientific and pathology services to the justice system of South Australia in the disciplines of Biology, Chemistry, Pathology and Toxicology. Chris has over 30 years experience in forensic science as a practitioner and administrator. He is a Professorial Fellow at Flinders University, Chair of NATA’s Forensic Science Accreditation Advisory Committee and member of the Executive of the Senior Managers of Australian and New Zealand Forensic Laboratories (SMANZFL).

Institute of Environmental Science and Research Limited (ESR)

Dr Jill Vintiner - Forensic Programme Manager

Dr Jill Vintiner is currently the Forensic Programme Manager at the Institute of Environmental Science and Research Ltd (ESR) and her responsibilities include leading and managing the delivery of ESR’s forensic sciences services from a scientific, financial and quality assurance perspective.  Jill joined the Forensic Biology group at ESR in 1999 with a particular focus around the DNA Databank operation and in 2003, she became the Forensic Research Programme Manager.  Prior to working at ESR, Dr Vintiner held research positions in the field of molecular genetics both in the United Kingdom and New Zealand. 

National Measurement Institute

Dr Michael Collins

Michael Collins is currently the Director of the Australian Forensic Drug Laboratory within the National Measurement Institute (NMI). He entered the NMI through a joint AFP/NMI appointment in 2003 to create a drug profiling program for Australia which was completed in collaboration with the United States Drug Enforcement Administration. Prior to these roles Michael has worked in the university and private sectors and with the NSW State Government. He completed his BSc and PhD in Organic Chemistry at the University of Sydney in 1984 specialising in Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and molecular structure. His main interests today involve the forensic applications of light element stable isotope ratios and the use of NMR in forensic chemistry. He is an inveterate snow skier with a healthy interest in red wine.

New South Wales Health Pathology - Forensic and Analytical Science Service (FASS)

Ms Sharon Neville - Acting Deputy Director

With over 25 years of experience in Forensic Science in both practitioner and managerial roles, Sharon is currently employed as the Acting Deputy Director of the Criminalistics Branch within the FASS network of NSW Health Pathology. Sharon’s primary responsibility is to provide operational leadership to the Criminalistics Branch aligning to the NSW FASS organisational strategy. Sharon is the NSW representative on the Biologist Specialist Advisory Group (BSAG) and is a NATA Assessor of Forensic Laboratories. Previous roles have included representing NSW on the Scientific Working Group on DNA Interpretation and Statistics. Sharon has presented expert evidence in numerous criminal trials in NSW, Queensland, and South Australia and regularly lectures to a broad range of scientific and non-scientific agencies.

New South Wales Police Force - Forensic Services Group

Assistant Commissioner Peter Cotter APM - Commander

Assistant Commissioner Peter Cotter APM is the Commander of the Forensic Services Group. As Commander, Peter leads and has oversight of the operational and managerial responsibilities of forensic investigation and the provision of a timely and expert forensic service for the NSW Police Force. Peter took on this leadership role in December 2013 upon being appointed as an Assistant Commissioner. Peter has 32 years policing experience, having joined the NSW Police Force in 1984, with over 20 years tenure as a criminal investigator from practitioner to leader within the serious and violent crime domain, specifically homicide and armed robbery.

Northern Territory Police - Forensic Science Branch

Mr Des Carroll - Director

Des is the Director of the Forensic Science Branch which is based in Darwin. He has over 30 years' experience in forensic science. The Branch is a NATA accredited laboratory responsible for the provision of Territory-wide forensic services across a range of disciplines and activities including crime scene, firearms examination, fingerprints, chemistry, biology, photography and exhibits liaison.

Queensland Health - Forensic and Scientific Services (FSS)

Mr Paul Csoban - Executive Director

Paul Csoban commenced as the new Executive Director FSS on 11 January 2016. Paul grew up in Geelong (obviously a Cats fan) and completed his tertiary and postgraduate qualifications at Melbourne University, RMIT and Monash University. Paul qualified with a Bachelor of Applied Science (Medical Technology) and went on to complete several post graduate qualifications including an MBA from Monash University in Melbourne. Paul has held senior executive and Board positions in various areas of the health sector for over 30 years. He has worked both in the public and private sector and in corporate and NFP organisations. He worked as a medical scientist with experience in all departments of pathology and eventually went on to manage large Corporate Pathology companies. He ran QML for two years when it was purchased by the Mayne group and was then promoted to National General Manager of Mayne Pathology. He has worked overseas and set up laboratories in India, Malaysia and Singapore. He has been responsible for managing contracts and projects from $10k to the major QML building project of $30m at Murrarie. Most recent positions included Executive Director of the ACT Division of Australian Red Cross, Group Manager at the Royal District Nursing Service of South Australia, Chief Operating Officer of Palliative Care Australia and Head of Programs Cancer Council Queensland.

Queensland Police Service - Forensic Sciences Group

Superintendent Brian Huxley - Operations Commander

Superintendent Brian Huxley is the Operations Commander with strategic management responsibility of the Forensic Services Group which provides state-wide, specialist forensic services including crime scene examination and laboratory based analysis, coronial support services including specialist investigation assistance and Disaster Victim Identification, and vehicle inspection services including mechanical examinations. Brian is also the QPS Agency Representative on the State Disaster Co-ordination Group which is the peak disaster management policy and decision-making body in Queensland. Brian has served for over 35 years with Queensland Police working in a wide range of operational and corporate areas of the organisation.

South Australia Police - Forensic Services Branch

Superintendent Les Buckley

Profile pending.

Tasmania Police

Inspector Grant Twining

Profile Pending

Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine

Professor Noel Woodford - Director

Noel Woodford is the Director of the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine (VIFM) and holds the Chair in Forensic Medicine at Monash University. Prior to his appointment as Director in July 2014, Noel was Head of Forensic Pathology Services at the Institute for 6 years. Noel has worked as a senior forensic pathologist at the VIFM since 2003 before which he was a consultant Home Office Pathologist and Senior Lecturer in Forensic Pathology in the Department of Forensic Pathology at Sheffield University UK. Whilst in the UK he obtained a Master of Laws in Medical Law from the University of Cardiff. His special interests include sudden unexpected natural adult death and radiological imaging as an adjunct to medico-legal death investigation.

Victoria Police - Forensic Services Department

Mr John Doherty - Director

John Doherty is the Director at the Victoria Police Forensic Services Department. John has worked as a senior forensic manager in Australia since October 2009. Prior to this, John worked in the UK for 20 years, initially at the Forensic Science Service where he specialised in the examination of drugs and plastic packaging materials. He then moved to Forensic Alliance/LGC Forensics, where John was initially a senior drug practitioner, eventually becoming the Head of Operations for the Drugs Section. He obtained a Bachelor of Science degree with Honours in Chemistry from the University of Manchester. John is Deputy Chair of NATA’s Forensic Science Accreditation Advisory Committee. 

Western Australia Police

Superintendent Peter Hatch

Superintendent Peter Hatch is the Divisional Officer for the WA Police – Forensic Division having assumed this leadership role in January 2016. 

Peter is responsible for the oversight and strategic direction (from both a management and operational deployment perspective) around the current and future delivery of forensic services to support investigations across Western Australia. In addition he is the Disaster Victim Identification (DVI) Commander for WA Police.

Peter has over 31 years of broad ranging operational policing experience with WA Police predominantly in the general duties and police prosecuting fields within both the Metropolitan Region and Regional WA.

In 2015 and 2016, as the South West District Superintendent, Peter successfully led and coordinated both the WA Police and multi-agency emergency response to the two largest bushfires in WA’s history in his role as the District Emergency Management Co-ordinator. 

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