Keith Preston, President (SA)
Keith is Arts Manager at the Australian Migrant Resource Centre in Adelaide since 2007 and is involved in managing and coordinating a range of arts projects with artists from new arrival communities which includes traditional music & dance, school exhibitions and presentation of several key cultural festivals. Each year he produces a major concert at the Adelaide Festival Centre. He is involved with a range of performance projects through HATs Inc, including the acclaimed Adelaide Songs project. He currently plays with fusion band Moonta Street who blend European and Chinese music, Sufi Highway a South Asian and Middle East music show and works regularly as a performer of traditional puppetry. He has just written a musical comedy which will be produced in 2021. He previously worked for many years as coordinator of the SA State Folk Festival (Victor Harbour), the SA Medieval Festival and established the SA Folk Centre. Keith has experience in arts organisations, festival management, overseas touring, band management and youth development.
John McAuslan, Treasurer (Vic)
John McAuslan is now 5 years retired as director of the Brunswick Music Festival and Across The Borders Pty Ltd. (ATB), an event / artist management and international touring agency. Across The Borders was in the business of event management and international touring for over 18 years. ATB were the event managers of the Brunswick Music Festival, the Sydney Road Street Party and the Mechanics Institute PAC from 1997-2013. John started in the folk music movement as a performer and from the early 80s as an organiser; he was director of the 1986 National Folk Festival; an Australia Council-funded music coordinator in Brunswick and label manager of Brunswick Recordings for Brunswick Council (1990-93), a groundbreaking label featuring Victorian multicultural and Anglo/Celtic recordings, which produced 18 titles on vinyl, cassette and CD. He served as Treasurer on the original board of Folk Alliance Australia (FAA), served on the Victorian Folk Life Association and was a member of the Victorian Government festivals grant panel. In 2008 he was awarded the Graeme Squance Award for services to folk music in Victoria; he served as the chairperson of Folk Alliance Australia 2011-2013, and now returns as Treasurer of the FAA.
Cherie Harvey (SA)
Cherie Harvey is founder and manager of HATs Inc (Heritage Arts & Traditions), a multi-award winning arts organisation based in the Clare Valley wine region in South Australia. HATs Inc is based in the historic Auburn Courthouse and is upheld as a model for presenting arts and music in regional areas. HATs specialises in presenting touring acts, developing new projects and engaging with a regional audience. Cherie has a long association with folk music and dance and was Chairperson of the Folk Federation of SA from 2000 to 2004.
Erin Collins (Tas)
Erin is a musician and writer whose work has been showcased at performances and festivals as diverse as the National, Cygnet, Tamar Valley, Maldon and Majors Creek Folk Festivals, Ten Days on the Island, Junction Arts Festival, Queenstown Heritage and Arts Festival, the Wooden Boat Festival and From France to Freycinet, in addition to Regional arts and other touring. She has been involved with the Cygnet Folk Festival, predominantly as a performer since the mid 1990s. Over the past two decades Erin has qualified in courses, masterclasses and seminars in event management and festivals and combines her experience of performance with management of festivals and events. Erin has worked as performer, producer, company manager and musical director for shows during Ten Days on the Island, presented for festivals as Band Manager for Australian Folk group Silkweed, presented for “Mostly Folk” on Hobart FM community radio and is the Tasmanian producer of the Woodford Folk Festival initiative, Festival of Small Halls in partnership with the Cygnet Folk Festival. Erin has steered the artistic vision as Artistic Director for the Cygnet Folk Festival since 2011. She lives in Hobart.
Linda Bull (QLD)
Linda returned to her home town of Brisbane to work with cutting edge ensemble Topology as Executive Producer, after having spent 15 years working in the music industry in Canada, most recently as General Manager of the Nova Scotia Youth Orchestra in Halifax. She also worked for many years in the areas of Music Publicity, Booking and Tour Management, Concert Promotion and as a (folk) musician herself. She has a wide network of music contacts in the folk music community in Canada and all over Europe, particularly in Italy where she has toured with many well-known Italian musicians. Linda is keen to get more involved in the Australian folk music community and contribute to building stronger and more powerful advocacy for Australian folk both at home and abroad.
Rob Dickens (Vic)
Rob is editor of Listening Through The Lens, an on-line roots music magazine established in 2012. He has been a freelance journalist for No Depression, Addicted To Noise, Steam and Rhythms, having covered US festivals (eg. AmericanaFest, Folk Alliance International, World of Bluegrass), US music museums and cultural centres, Australian events (live shows, Port Fairy Folk Festival and Mountaingrass) and Fairport Convention’s Copredy Convention in the UK. Pre-COVID(!) he managed and led small music tour groups to the US South annually. Rob looks forward to contributing to the folk music community at this difficult time.
Therese Virtue (Vic)
Therese has spent many years engaged with folk music in various contexts. As a teacher in Victoria’s secondary schools, she found herself swapping songs and dances with Greek and Macedonian students in Melbourne’s West. She has sung in various folk groups with repertoires of English, Irish, American and Australian songs, and in the Italian folkloric ensemble Il Gruppo Folcloristico Italiano. Therese was a founding member of Petrunka, Melbourne Women’s Bulgarian Choir, and now spends considerable time wrestling with the intricacies of ancient Georgian polyphony, in Melbourne Georgian Choir. After many years, Therese swapped teaching for work as an organiser for Melbourne’s multicultural music presenter The Boite, where she is recognised as an advocate for artists and performers from the hugely diverse range of cultures and music genres housed in Melbourne.