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Elke Tapley 

Community Laws Officer, East Gippsland Shire Council

Elke's career spans many aspects, with Animal Management being the largest and fastest growing proportion.

Her experience in Local Government spans  21 years and includes the on-road roles of Municipal Laws Officer and Municipal Laws Project Officer with Nillumbik Shire Council and her most recent role in the largest municipality of Victoria. 

Commencing as Coordinator with Knox in 2006 and moving across to country Victoria in Broadford to take on her Mitchell role has given her a broad understanding of changing demographics. Elke holds an Advanced Diploma in Business Management, Diploma in Business (Frontline Management) and a Certificate IV in Assessment and Workplace Training.

Involved regionally, Elke is an Administrator of the VicRangers Forum, a committee member of the Victorian Emergency Animal Welfare Committee and a member of the LGPro Statutory Services Special Interest Group. She was also a member of the UAM/AVA ‘AMO Team of the Year’ in 2001.

Vice President

Stuart Harris

Senior Animal Management Officer, Brimbank City Council

Stuart has been involved with animals for many years.

He commenced as an Animal Management Officer in 2012, completing a dual Certificate IV in Animal Control and Regulation and Statutory Compliance in 2014 and received a Community First Service Reward, also in 2014, for his work over and above his standard responsibilities. Stuart became the Senior Animal Management Officer at Brimbank Council in 2016.

Stuart holds a Diploma of Management and has managed large Pet Supplies stores in Victoria being involved in sales throughout Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia.

Stuart and his wife also own and operate one of the largest privately owned dog training schools in Victoria which has been running for the past 16 ½ years. He holds a Certificate III in Obedience Training and Behaviour achieved through The National Dog Trainers Federation.



Marketing Coordinator


Steve Cook

RSPCA Inspector 

Steve has worked in law enforcement roles for over 10 years. His roles have included Parking Officer, Animal Management Officer, Emergency Management and Community Safety Coordinator. 

Steve has completed a Certificate IV in statutory compliance and a Certificate III in dog training and behaviour. Steve recently completed the Diploma of Government Investigations. 




Membership Coordinator

  Kurt Livens

  Ranger Team Leader, Cessnock City Council, NSW 

Kurt is the Ranger Team Leader at Cessnock City Council. Kurt started with Council  4.5 years ago as a Ranger and has since implemented a school education program and school parking signage program, building relationships in the community.

Kurt holds a Cert IV in Regulatory Services, Investigations, and Training and Assessment. His key focus is community education for pet owners and will be speaking about the responsible pet ownership programs implemented in Cessnock.




Sharleen Jordan BSc Dip Ed Dip LGA

Lecturer, Local Govt/Animal Studies Central Regional TAFE.,WA 

Sharleen is an ASL2 (Advanced Skills Lecturer) for Central Regional TAFE (WA) who has been conducting training for the Local Government and Animal Studies sectors since 1996. 

Her teachings incorporate a wide scope of Nationally Accredited subjects including animal behaviour, management and control, reptile handling, livestock, emergency management, firearms, and more. 

Sharleen has almost ten years of service on the WA Rangers Association committee and represents them on this AIAM committee; as well as a presence on several other committees. She has worked with Animal Control in the USA and is currently conducting training and undertaking various projects with Animal Control in Malaysia. Sharleen has a vast international network of officers and through this network is able to uphold her principles of teaching “Current International Best Practice” with a strong focus on Animal Welfare and Occupational Health and Safety


Nell Thompson

Coordinator Getting 2 Zero

Nell has been on the AIAM Committee since 2013 and has worked in the animal welfare, care and veterinary sectors for over 20 years. 

 Nell is the Coordinator of the national Getting 2 Zero program where her background in shelter/pound operations and management and animal health is a great resource for Councils, shelters and all groups and individuals involved in the program.

 Nell is passionate about improving outcomes for pets who enter the shelter and pound systems and strongly believes that the best results occur when animal welfare and animal management are working together towards the same goals.




Sharon McTaggart

Regulatory Services Manager – Litchfield Council 

Originally from Western Australia, Sharon has been in the Northern Territory for the past 6 years, working as the Animal Management Supervisor for the City of Darwin until moving into her current role as Regulatory Services Manager for the Litchfield Council.

During the past year, Sharon has initiated several responsible pet ownership initiatives through Council including free microchipping, $100 de-sexing vouchers and a dog awareness educational program for schools. She works actively with rescue groups and has managed to achieve a pound euthanasia rate of less than 2% for the Litchfield Council.

Sharon is passionate about animal management and has identified many issues in the Northern Territory such as the lack of legislation to support local councils in the management of domestic animals, high euthanasia rates of impounded animals, the lack of relevant industry training available for Rangers and also the lack of consistency and direction across neighbouring councils with By-laws and animal management in general.







Melanie Dansie

 Supervisor Local Laws - Rockhampton Regional Council

Melanie has over a decade’s experience in animal management and became an AIAM committee member in 2017. With a background in agriculture, dog obedience and show, Melanie has been an integral part of developing and implementing new processes and community based programs to promote responsible pet ownership.

Creating networks within the industry to create a collaborative approach for all to deliver the best product for our customers is a key focus.

 Melanie is the inaugural recipient of the Compass Group Young Manager of the Year award in 2006 and has a reputation for efficient service delivery, with a strong focus on community safety. 


Nishu Ellawala

Coordinator Local Laws, Rockhampton City Council

Nishu has worked in Local Government both in New Zealand and Australia for over 15 years, leading large multidisciplinary development & compliance services teams in building, planning & environment and local laws.

Nishu is passionate about animal management with a key focus on community education and community partnerships to improve responsible pet ownership, the well-being of animals and that of the community. 

(C)2016 Australian Institute of Animal Management - all rights reserved . PO Box 1015 Northam WA 6401

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