Catholic Education South Australia
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10 Jun 2021
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Recognising leaders in Catholic Education

Six leaders in Catholic Education South Australia have been recognised for their work as emerging leaders by the Australian Council for Educational Leaders (ACEL). 

Each year, the South Australian branch of ACEL honours educational leaders who in the view of their peers have made a significant contribution to the understanding and practice of educational leadership.

The 2021 awards were presented at a ceremony at Government House on Wednesday evening, with the 2020 award winners also recognised due to last year’s ceremony being cancelled due to COVID-19.

Congratulations to the following worthy recipients in 2021:

Dr Neil McGoran
Executive Director – Catholic Education South Australia
ACEL SA Educational Leadership Award

The Educational Leadership Medal acknowledges those who have demonstrated a commitment beyond their current role. Capabilities include high-level educational outcomes for self and others, and the ability to inspire, influence, and implement change in an innovative manner.

Kerry White
Principal, Holy Family Catholic School, Parafield Gardens
ACEL SA Fellowship Award

Kerry has transformed Holy Family Catholic School from a small Catholic parish school to a growing and thriving primary school. Under Kerry’s leadership, the work of school staff has been recognised internationally.


Alice Dunlop
Acting Deputy Principal, McAuley Community School, Hove
ACEL SA Fellowship Award

Alice has been a teacher and leader for 11 years, currently completing a Doctor of Philosophy in Science and Mathematics Education. An Active member of ACEL, Alice has a passion for ecological sustainability.


Sister Jillian Havey AM
Retired Principal, St Dominic’s Priory College, North Adelaide
ACEL SA Educational Leadership Award

Retiring in 2019 after almost 50 years, SA’s Premier, Steven Marshall paid tribute to Sr Jill, acknowledging that her unshakable belief in the potential of every student had empowered graduates to pursue their dreams with confidence and to continue making a positive contribution to the South Australian community.


Congratulations to the 2020 Pip Fields Emerging Leader Award winners who were also recognised at this year’s ceremony:

Patrick Harmer
Deputy Principal, Cardijn College, Noarlunga Downs

Patrick has been in the role of Deputy Principal, Cardijn College (Cardijn and Marcellin Campuses) since 2019. In this time, he has made a significant contribution to student outcomes and the professional development of staff. Patrick’s passion is school improvement in Learning Environments and Wellbeing.

Rebecca Baker
Assistant Principal – Learning & Teaching, Thomas More College, Salisbury Downs

Rebecca has been in her current role since 2018, after beginning her career as a Visual Arts teacher in 2010. During that time, Rebecca has worked across many areas towards a holistic change in College practices through developing key strategic goals across curriculum, subject offerings, wellbeing and transition programs, learning areas and more. Rebecca has continued to lead cultural change at the College through her focus on Strategy and Innovation.

The Pip Fields Emerging Leader Award is presented to an emerging educational leader in their first 5 years of a designated leadership position, who has demonstrated outstanding educational practice in the classroom and leadership that has made a significant difference to colleagues and students.

Congratulations Neil, Kerry, Alice, Sr Jill, Patrick and Rebecca on this recognition of your leadership achievements!

Pictured Above L-R: Dr Neil McGoran, Kerry White, Alice Dunlop and Patrick Harmer.

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