Advisory Council

The Advisory Council plays an important part in developing the institute's public policy programs and in establishing a broad network of researchers and experts to contribute to our work.


Mr Julien O'Connell AO

Julien O'Connell is Pro-Chancellor of Australian Catholic University and Chair of the PM Glynn Institute Advisory Council. Following successful careers in insurance, accounting and risk management, he joined the Board of Mercy Health in 2005 and served as Chairman from 2008-2018 and now holds the position of Executive Chairman Mercy Health Foundation. He is also Chairman of Villa Maria Catholic Homes, the Chairman of the CEO Institute (Syndicate 4), which provides mentoring to CEOs and Chairs of member companies, Director of Catholic Health Australia, a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and Director of a number of companies.

Pam Betts

Miss Pam Betts

Pam Betts is Executive Director of the Catholic Education Office in the Archdiocese of Brisbane. She has over thirty years’ experience in Catholic education as a secondary teacher in both systemic and religious institute schools. She worked with the Catholic Education Commission and Edmund Rice Education Australia before her appointment to the role of Director Administrative Services and subsequent appointment as Executive Director Brisbane Catholic Education.

Virginia Bourke

Ms Virginia Bourke

Virginia is a lawyer and consultant in private practice with a breadth of corporate governance and commercial experience. She is a consultant to the national health industry group at MinterEllison Lawyers. Virginia is Chair of Mercy Health and a former General Counsel for the Institute of Sisters of Mercy of Australia and Papua New Guinea. She is a Director of Mater Group and Catholic Health Australia and is currently Chair of St John Ambulance Victoria.

Jacinta Collins.

Ms Jacinta Collins

Jacinta Collins is a former Australian politician who is the executive director of the National Catholic Education Commission (NCEC). She served as a Senator for Victoria from 1995 to 2005 and again from 2008 to 2019. She represented the Australian Labor Party (ALP) and was the party's deputy leader in the Senate from June to October 2013. She was a parliamentary secretary in the Gillard Government and Minister for Mental Health and Ageing in the second Rudd Government. Before entering parliament, she was a social worker and union official and held several positions with the Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees' Association (SDA), including as National Industrial Officer for five years.

Peter Comensoli

Most Rev Peter A. Comensoli

Most Reverend Peter Andrew Comensoli was appointed the ninth Archbishop for the Archdiocese of Melbourne on 29 June 2018. Prior to this appointment, he served as Bishop to the Diocese of Broken Bay and as Auxiliary-Bishop to the Archdiocese of Sydney. At the national level, Archbishop Comensoli is Chair of the Bishops' Commission for Life, Family and Public Engagement; Chair of the newly formed Australian Catholic Council for Public Engagement; and is a member of the Bishops’ Permanent Committee.

Jennifer Cook

Ms Jennifer Cook

Jennifer Cook began her legal career working in human rights, first by interning at the International Commission of Jurists in Geneva, Switzerland, followed by working in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, for an international human rights organisation training public defenders. She has over a decade of experience as a commercial litigation lawyer, with expertise in international commercial arbitration. She acted as in-house counsel for World Youth Day 2008 before assuming her current role as General Counsel of the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney in 2009.

Stepan Kerkyasharian

Mr Stepan Kerkyasharian AO

Stepan Kerkyasharian is the former President and Chief Executive of the NSW Anti-Discrimination Commission (2003–16). He is also the former Chairman and Chief Executive of the NSW Community Relations Commission and its predecessor, the Ethnic Affairs Commission (1989–2013).

Brian Loughnane

Mr Brian Loughnane AO

Brian Loughnane is a business and political strategic advisor. He was Federal Director of the Liberal Party of Australia from 2002 until early 2016. In that time he ran four national campaigns as Coalition Campaign Director. He has extensive international political experience with major parties around the world. In 2016 he undertook a review of campaign operations for the Conservative Party of Canada. He is a member of the International Advisory Board of the International Republican Institute and a Vice Chairman of the International Democrat Union.

Brigid McKenna

Dr Brigid McKenna

Brigid McKenna is a lecturer in clinical skills and medical ethics, School of Medicine, University of Tasmania. Prior to this she was Director of the Office of Life, Marriage and Family in the Archdiocese of Hobart. She holds degrees in medicine and bioethics and was previously Policy Officer and Executive Officer of the Office of Life, Marriage and Family in the Archdiocese of Sydney.

Pat Mullins

Mr Patrick Mullins

Patrick Mullins is senior partner of the Brisbane law firm, Mullins Lawyers. He practises as both a civil (or common) lawyer and as a canon lawyer. He holds masters degrees in law, theology, arts and canon law, as well as the ecclesiastical degree JCL (Licentiate in Canon Law) from KU Leuven, Belgium. He is currently Chair of the Boards of Holy Spirit Northside Private Hospital and Holy Spirit Care Services.

Tim O'Leary.

Mr Tim O’Leary

Tim is the Executive Director Stewardship for the Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne.
Prior to joining the Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne in early 2020, Tim spent over 30 years in senior executive positions in the banking, telecommunications and oil industries in Australia and overseas. Tim sits on a number of Boards, Councils and Advisory Committees including Mercy Health, Newman College (University of Melbourne), and Cerebral Palsy Australia. He also Chairs Mercy Health’s Human Research Ethics Committee. Tim holds an Honours Degree in Arts and a Graduate Diploma in Philosophy from the University of Melbourne.

Francis Sullivan

Mr Francis Sullivan AO

Francis Sullivan is the former Chief Executive Officer of the Truth, Justice and Healing Council. Prior to this he worked in government and private practice and also held positions as Secretary-General of the Australian Medical Association, Chief Executive Officer of Catholic Health Australia and Senior Advisor to the Minister for Health in Western Australia. He also served as a consultant to the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Health Care Workers at the Vatican.

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