Executive Committee

Chris Beardshaw

Chris Beardshaw

Chris has over ten years of experience in a wide range of water related and civil construction projects, providing project management experience and specialist technical skills. Chris has completed a Bachelor of Environmental Engineering (Honours) a Master of Engineering Science (Project Management) at UNSW and a Graduate Diploma in River Health Management. Previous projects include the design and construction of lakes, dams and wetlands, and experience in project cost estimation and construction budgets. Chris is experienced with a number of design and modelling software packages combined with on ground construction experience. Chris’s civil design and construction experience combined with hydraulic modelling expertise is particularly orientated towards Urban design and flood modelling issues. Chris has been on the Committee of Stormwater Victoria since 2011.

Ann Pugh

Ann Pugh
Urban Water Solutions
Vice President

Having worked with many water authorities, both domestically and overseas, to implement advanced software tools that provide efficiencies in the planning and operational activities Ann has broad experience in the engineering and IT industries. This exposure extends beyond the water supply and wastewater networks to include all facets of the water cycle including stormwater and flood modelling. She has held roles in hydraulic modelling, strategic planning, water quality, operations and marketing teams, and currently manages the sales activities for Innovyze across Australia.  Ann is currently working on real time operational modelling and asset management systems for stormwater, potable water and wastewater systems at various sites around Australia.

She is passionate about diversity, collaboration, education and communication, and is the current President of the Vermont Primary School Council and studying a Masters in Integrated Water Management.

Sarah Watkins

Sarah Watkins
Melbourne Water

Sarah currently work at Melbourne Water in the Water Services Planning team, focusing on medium-term planning for growth and strategic integrated water management projects. Sarah work closely with Melbourne Water's Development Planning team, the retail water companies, Councils and DELWP. Sarah is also involved as an industry representative in the CRC Water Sensitive Cities. Previously Sarah worked as the Regional Stormwater Coordinator as part of the Living Rivers Program working with many Councils on improved stormwater management projects. Prior to Melbourne Water, Sarah spent 3 years at Storm Consulting where she gained experience in design and modelling of WSUD and SWH systems. Sarah also have been involved in the Little Stringybark Creek Project and the ESO (planning overlay). Qualifications include: B. Engineering (Environmental), B. Science, M. Integrated Water Management.

Emma Hendy

Emma Hendy
Wallbridge Gilbert Aztec

Emma has 10 years of experience as a Civil and Environmental Engineer in both Australia and the United Kingdom. Emma is currently a Senior Engineer at Wallbridge Gilbert Aztec with significant experience in South Australia before relocating to the Melbourne office.

Emma has undertaken numerous stormwater management plans of a local and regional scale, including policy review and working with local government to investigate sustainable water strategies. Emma has particular interest in Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD), stormwater harvesting and sustainable water management and has recently worked on a number of large scale stormwater harvesting and reuse concepts for South Australia including, the State Government 'Urban Stormwater Harvesting Options Study' and Eastern Region Alliance 'Waterproofing the East' project. Emma hopes to share the learning from working in South Australia and be a part of the future of stormwater management in Victoria.


Committee Members

Charlotte Beresford

Charlotte Beresford

Charlotte leads Clearwater’s regional Victoria program Building Capacity for Integrated Water Management in Victoria; a joint initiative with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning.

Charlotte brings over 10 years of experience in integrated water management. Prior to joining Clearwater, Charlotte coordinated the training portfolio for the International WaterCentre, building capacity in IWM for both domestic and international audiences. Her experience in IWM planning and delivery includes waterway health monitoring and rehabilitation, water sensitive urban design, policy and strategy development and catchment wide initiatives that rethink the interface between urban design, open space planning and urban water management

Jamie Tainton

Jamie Tainton
LDeng Pty Ltd

Jamie has 14 years experience working as a Civil Engineer.  A great majority of this work has focused on Subdivision and Water Sensitive Urban Design through the land development process. Jamie has worked closely with local governments, developers, water retailers, and authorities like Melbourne Water to find efficient and economical solutions to many projects. Jamie has also worked extensively across the Victorian and New South Wales markets and is well versed in the expectations of Council.

With knowledge of and experience in the application of various planning, legislatures and Best Management Practices, Jamie has strengths in the feasibility, concept design, detailed design and construction/superintending phases of a variety of projects including roads, intersections, sewer, water supply, drainage, and water quality assets.

From this role as a graduate Civil Engineer through to the Management position that Jamie now holds, effective communication is one of her strongest attributes and is what differentiates her from her peers.  Jamie has run workshops, mentored staff, educated clients and negotiated outcomes. She enjoys the challenge of identifying an audiences’ motivations and using that, is able to achieves the best outcome for a project.

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Jamie Comley
Jamie Comley Consulting

Jamie is an Environmental Engineer, Urban Planner and Geographer who has worked in sustainable water management for over 12 years. His experience encompasses a broad range of strategic, technical, policy and research areas associated with implementation of integrated water management and water sensitive urban design. Jamie holds specialist expertise in capacity building, project/program design and integrating sustainable water management into land use planning. He is passionate about improving sustainability and liveability outcomes for our community and enjoys taking a big picture view and collaborative approach in addressing these issues.

Jamie's career experience includes working with various water authorities (including Melbourne Water), local government and private consulting firms, both in Australia and overseas. These days, Jamie runs his own consulting business in sustainable water management. 


Geoff Connellan
G&M Connellan Consulting

Geoff has 30 years experience in urban horticulture water management, research and education and outreach. He held a range of positions at the Burnley Campus, University of Melbourne, including Senior Lecturer in Plant Science and Engineering and Principal Lecturer. He currently provides consultancy services in urban water management through G & M Connellan Consultants.

His expertise includes strategies for sustainable irrigated open space, water demand management, evaluation of water use and water technologies. Geoff has presented and published widely, both internationally and in Australia, on urban water management and irrigation topics, and is the recipient of various industry awards. He is an Honorary Fellow, Ecosystem and Forest Sciences, Faculty of Science, University of Melbourne.

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Cintia Dotto
Water Technology

Cintia is a senior engineer at Water Technology and has over nine years of experience in urban water projects in Australia and overseas. Her day-to-day work consists of WSUD investigations, including design and audits of WSUD features, water quality projects and IWM options analysis. Cintia is passionate about investigating innovative IWM solutions to deliver multi-benefits and create multi-functional spaces under current and future environmental drivers and constraints. She spent 3 years working with the CRC for Water Sensitive Cities, when she worked with a number of internal and external stakeholders to lead a multidisciplinary project for the development of a model (the Water Sensitive Cities Toolkit) to quantify the multi-benefits associated with WSUD strategies, which supports the transition of urban precincts towards more liveable, sustainable and resilient places.

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Rachelle Adamowicz
Melbourne Water

Rachelle is a Regional Stormwater Coordinator at Melbourne Water where she coordinates the Living Rivers program for the North-East and Inner metro Councils to advance sustainable stormwater management and water sensitive urban design (WSUD) for the protection of waterways and environmental benefits. Through her work, Rachelle supports a number of stages of stormwater management including policy, strategy, construction and maintenance. Through her Bachelor of Arts and Masters of Environment & Sustainability, Rachelle's academic background is strongly rooted in environmental science, sociology and philosophy. Rachelle has been in the stormwater industry for 7 years and prior to joining Melbourne Water, worked with the CRC for Water Sensitive Cities.


Sam Innes
City of Port Phillip

Sam has been involved in the stormwater industry for nine years, woking with local government in NSW and Victoria. 

He has key skills in the application of water sensitive urban design, playing a key role as a change agent and building organisational capacity. Sam is at home in both the technical and strategic aspects of stormwater and loves everything from planning the next big multi-stakeholder scheme to kicking the dirt in a raingarden. With a background in Environmental Science Sam is passionate about the environment and also has a history of waterway restoration.

 Colin McLeod

Colin McLeod
Maroondah City Council

Colin is a Civil and Infrastructure engineer who started his career working as a Civil Structural Engineer focusing on housing developments and drainage design. During this time, Colin has developed skills relating to foundation and construction; his passion however, was always with water and its interactions with the environment.

Colin is currently working with the local government as a Drainage Engineer, expanding his knowledge and skills of flood modelling and project engineering. His role consists of assisting developers to design proposals that reduce flooding across municipalities, whilst also identifying areas for draining improvements and water sensitive urban design. Through his work, Colin hopes to continually enhance surrounding communities through developments of new innovative solutions that will reduce adverse impacts on waterways and ecology surrounding those waterways.

Ralf Pfleiderer

Ralf Pfleiderer
City of Melbourne

Ralf has over 20 years’ experience in the landscaping and sustainably industry with a formal qualification as an Environmental Engineer.

This has included over 9 years as the Water Sensitive Urban Design Coordinator for the City of Melbourne contributing to the revision of several of their key strategies and the delivery of four major stormwater harvesting schemes located in Fitzroy Gardens, Birrarung Marr, Alexandra Gardens and Darling St East Melbourne. Ralf works as a change agent across council helping to position the City of Melbourne as a leader in the field of WSUD implementation and innovation. He also engages frequently and actively with key external stakeholders in the water sphere across Melbourne and beyond.

Ralf participated in the 2012 Water Sensitive Cities Study tour to Singapore and Europe and established the Inner Melbourne Local Government WUSD practitioner's network, both of which have expanded his network and knowledge greatly.

Prior to working for council Ralf worked for Australian Ecosystems, Melbourne’s leading ecosystem restoration company specialising in wetland systems and indigenous vegetation.

In 2016 Ralf set up Ralf Pfleiderer Environmental Consulting specialising in providing specialist WSUD and IWM advice from strategic planning through to construction and maintenance.

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Elizabeth Smolinska

Liz is a Water Engineer with 8 years of experience in the consulting sector and currently works for Jacobs within the Surface Water team. Liz specialises in hydrological and hydraulic modelling, stormwater drainage design, water sensitive urban design and water quality modelling/monitoring. She has also completed a Master’s degree in Hydrology and Water Resources Management at Imperial College London and worked over in the UK on flood risk assessment type work. This is her second year on the Stormwater Victoria committee; following on from the organisation of SV’s technical events last year, this year she will focus on the organisation of the 2018 State Conference. Liz is also a committee member for the Engineers Australia Water Panel.

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Andrew Thomas
The Unviersity of Melbourne

Andrew is currently a PhD student with the Waterway Ecology Research Group (WERG.org), attached to the University of Melbourne (Burnley Campus). His current qualifications include a Bachelor of Environmental Science with Honours and a Masters Degree in Environmental Science (research – performance of stormwater control ponds). His time in the stormwater industry is approximately 11 years, and has included stormwater quality measure (SCM) performance research, modelling, strategic planning, catchment management, urban stream rehabilitation and policy development. He has performed these various functions in local council (Wollongong City Council and Kiama Municipal Council), Universities (Wollongong and Melbourne) and consultancy (Aurecon Australasia). His current research role with the University of Melbourne involves investigating the operation and maintenance of SCM and implications for long-term performance, focusing on barriers faced by professionals in local councils managing these assets.


Birgit Jordan

Birgit Jordan
Melbourne Water

Birgit is a Water Management Engineer and Senior Stormwater Quality Technical Advisor in Melbourne Water’s Catchment & Water Quality Planning team with 21 years’ of experience in the private and public water sector and 5 years in publishing in Australia and Germany. During this time Birgit worked across the fields of waterway, stormwater, sewage and drinking water management in design, construction, capacity building and strategic and catchment planning.

Besides serving environmental protection and the interests of the community, Birgit is passionate about stormwater industry leadership and advancing knowledge and technical capabilities.

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Harry Virahsawmy

Harry is an urban water specialist with an engineering background and expertise in urban catchment hydrology and stormwater quality. From both research and consulting perspectives, he has over 10 years’ experience in the stormwater management sector. Harry specialises in Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD) and enjoys collaborating with landscape architects and ecologists to implement designs that achieve multiple benefits.  He is also passionate about the transformation towards a more water sensitive city and works closely with local and state government agencies to deliver sustainable water outcomes. Harry is actively engaged in the stormwater sector and regularly delivers lectures, industry seminars, and conference presentations.

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Philip Joyce

Philip is a Principal Civil Engineer and the leader of the Waterways and Stormwater Team at GHD based within their Melbourne Office.  He is a Chartered Engineer with the Institution of Civil Engineers (UK) and has over 20-years working experience, with 9 of these years gained working in the UK.

While his work broadly covers waterways and stormwater, he has a particular focus on sustainability and integrated water management.

In the UK, Philip began his career with Jeremy Benn Associates, after completing an MSc in Hydraulic Engineering, before then joining Black & Veatch

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Ari Triskelidis
City of Monash

Ari is the Principal Design Engineer leading the Design Management Team at the City of Monash. During his seven years in this position he has been instrumental in building a unified team that delivers a high standard of in-house and external design. His hands on approach, has demonstrated an ability to adapt throughout the many areas of Councils capital works program. With over 20 years experience as a Civil Engineer working both in local government and as a consultant in the private sector, he has been involved in the delivery of a wide range of projects.

Ari is determined to make a difference and has been a strong advocate for WSUD implementation and collaborating towards a water sensitive city. His most recent achievement has been the development of the Monash kerb inlet.

Ari is currently on the Stormwater Victoria committee and successfully chaired the 2014 and 2015 Stormwater Victoria Conference.



Stormwater Victoria Sub Committee Representatives 2017- 2018

State Conference

Chair:  Ann Pugh

Executive Representative – Andrew Thomas and Elizabeth Smolinska

Awards for Excellence

Chair: Ari Triskedilis

Executive Representative – Geoff Connellan and Birgit Jordan

Networking and Membership

Chair:  Cintia Dotto

Executive Representative – Charlotte Beresford, Colin McLeod and Emma Hendy (Secretary)


Chair:  Sam Innes 

Executive Representative – Chris Beardshaw (President), Jamie Tainton and Philip Joyce

Technical Events

Chair:  Harry Virahsawmy

Executive Representative – Ralf Pfleiderer (Past President), Jamie Comley, Rachelle Adamowicz and Sarah Watkins (Treasurer)