Meet the team

Heather Walker

Heather is Head of SunSmart at Cancer Council Victoria.

Heather WalkerHeather leads the state's skin cancer prevention and early detection program and contributes to the World Health Organization Collaborating Centre on UV Radiation.

Prior to joining Cancer Council Victoria, Heather applied her passion for improving cancer outcomes to policy development at Cancer Research UK. Her work achieved increased investment in NHS screening, diagnostic and radiotherapy services. Heather is also a Subject Coordinator on the University of Melbourne's Master of Cancer Sciences degree. She holds a Master of Public Policy with Distinction from the University of Oxford.

Heather is a regular commentator on skin cancer, sun protection and early detection in Australian media.

For an interview please contact

Justine Osborne

Justine is the Manager of the SunSmart Schools and Early Childhood Program.

Justine Osborne Justine has over 15 years’ health promotion experience at Cancer Council Victoria working across all aspects of the SunSmart program. Her background in education, health, foreign affairs and communication combined with her passion for sharing the SunSmart messages has seen her make a significant contribution to SunSmart’s mission.

Currently Chair of Cancer Council’s National Schools and Early Childhood Working Group, Justine has seen continual growth in national schools and early childhood SunSmart memberships.

She has represented SunSmart at numerous International and National conferences in skin cancer prevention and is regularly active in parliamentary enquiries and federal advocacy work. In a testament to her reputation, Justine was appointed the Conference Coordinator for the 3rd International Conference on UV and Skin Cancer Prevention held in Melbourne.

Justine has been instrumental in raising awareness of skin cancer prevention and early detection messages amongst the community and has seen the impact of this over time with a decline in melanoma rates in Victorians under 40 – the SunSmart Generation. 

Justine is a regular spokesperson for SunSmart. For an interview please contact

Clover Maitland OAM

Clover is the Research and Evaluation Manager for SunSmart.

Clover Maitland Working for the Centre for Behavioural Research in Cancer (CBRC) Clover manages the evaluation of SunSmart mass media campaigns and targeted programs to inform how to best change sun protection behaviours to reduce skin cancer risk. Following on from an elite sporting career, including two Olympic gold medals in hockey for Australia, Clover brings the same drive and determination to making a difference in her work with SunSmart.

Prior to joining the CBRC, she worked as a Research Fellow in the Health Promotion Evaluation Unit at the University of Western Australia (UWA). Clover has also worked as a Research Coordinator at RMIT University, and a Senior Manager at the Heart Foundation (WA) where she delivered health promotion campaigns and programs.

Clover is passionate about effecting change and cites collaborating with an international working group on the development of a new mobile health program for the World Health Organization as a career highlight.

Clover holds a Post-Graduate Diploma in Health Promotion from Curtin University and a PhD from the School of Human Sciences at UWA in Perth.

Shannon Jones

Shannon is the Health Professionals Program Manager for SunSmart.

Shannon Jones Shannon works directly with GPs and other health professionals in developing strategies to improve the early detection and prevention of skin cancer.

Shannon has a background in corporate health, health promotion and education. Combined with over 15 years with SunSmart in various roles including workplaces and community programs, Shannon brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the program.

Shannon is passionate about making a difference to GPs and their patients in skin cancer early diagnosis and prevention. The successful development and rollout of the Dermoscopy for Victorian General Practice Program, which has seen over 200 GPs upskill in skin cancer and provided with dermoscopy equipment, is one of Shannon’s major achievements.

Shannon studied a Bachelor of Applied Science (Health Promotion) at Deakin and is undertaking postgraduate studies towards a Masters in Public Health at Monash University.

Kate Ryan

Kate is the SunSmart Workplace & Community Coordinator.

Kate RyanKate's role includes raising awareness about the dangers of UV exposure in the workplace, highlighting prevention strategies and the importance of early detection of skin cancer. She primarily focuses on outdoor workers, who receive up to 10 times the UV exposure of indoor workers.

Kate has a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Graduate Diploma of Science in Physiology, both from Monash University. She comes to the SunSmart team with over 15 years’ experience in corporate health and wellbeing, running national health programs for large financial institutions and government departments.

Nicky Muir

Nicky is the Youth Coordinator for SunSmart.

Nicky Muir

Primarily working with secondary schools, Nicky’s role is to improve sun protective attitudes and behaviours amongst Victorian teens and young adults.

Nicky has worked with SunSmart over the past four years, firstly supporting the Schools and Early Childhood Program and delivering workplace UV education sessions, then as the Schools and Early Childhood Program Coordinator and now as the Youth Coordinator.

As a parent of teenagers, Nicky is passionate about ensuring youth are protected from the harms of UV radiation and that they understand the lifelong effects of tanning and getting sunburnt as an adolescent.

Nicky has a background in diagnostic pathology, workplace education and training and health promotion. Nicky studied a Bachelor of Applied Science (Medical Laboratory Science) from RMIT and a Post-Graduate Degree in Health Promotion from Curtin University.

Emma White

Emma White is the SunSmart Project Support Officer.  

Emma WhiteEmma is often the first point of contact for those engaging with the SunSmart Program at Cancer Council Victoria. She provides support to the program managers, helping the team achieve their objectives across the portfolio. Emma is also responsible for the overall smooth functioning of the SunSmart team, overseeing all key administrative duties.

Emma’s extensive background as an Executive Assistant in the tertiary sector has ensured her organisational skills and attention to detail are of the highest standard; a critical skill set required in managing the day-to-day output for the SunSmart team.

Emma is passionate about educating members of the public about skin cancer prevention and administering the UV safety training program aimed at workplaces.

Stephanie Cowdery

Dr Stephanie Cowdery (PhD) is the Research and Evaluation Officer for SunSmart.

StephanieStephanie is a recent Doctor of Philosophy (Medicine) graduate from the Institute for Innovation in Mental and Physical Health and Clinical Translation (IMPACT), Deakin University, School of Medicine where she was awarded the IMPACT postdoctoral research scholarship.

Prior to joining the team, Stephanie gained several years’ experience working in cancer services and oncology clinical trials through the Andrew Love Cancer Centre - Barwon Health, University Hospital Geelong, and the Peter McCallum Cancer Centre in partnership with the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre. Stephanie was also a Research Fellow at Deakin University’s Molecular Research Centre.

Stephanie has presented her research at several national and international conferences and has authored numerous manuscripts for professional scientific publication across disciplines including epidemiology, psychiatry, medicine, public health, and psycho-oncology. Stephanie has received national and international recognition of her work and in 2019 was announced as the Rotary Geelong Early Mental Health Researcher of the Year.

Stephanie is passionate about improving cancer outcomes, especially for regional/rural Victorians, and is on several national committees dedicated to the cause.

Emily Robertson

Emily Robertson is the Media and Communications Advisor for SunSmart

Emily RobertsonEmily is often the first point of contact for all media enquiries regarding the SunSmart Program at Cancer Council Victoria. Coordinating commentary in the traditional media sphere and managing the program’s social media accounts, Emily works to get the messages and work of SunSmart into the community.

With a double bachelor’s degree in Business (Public Relations) and Media and Communications, Emily has joined the SunSmart team with a passion for spreading awareness of skin cancer prevention strategies and making a difference in the lives of Victorians.

Hailing from the sunshine state of Queensland, Emily began her media career in the tourism industry, encouraging Australians to get out and about to explore their surroundings. Now, she’s urging Victorians to be SunSmart while doing it!