Governance | Torrens University

Executive team

Linda Brown

President

Linda joined Torrens University as President in September 2014 after more than 23 years of management experience in the education sector in Australia and the United Kingdom. With a diverse background incorporating leadership in private, public, government, social enterprise, commercial and education sectors, Linda is internationally recognised as an innovative, strategic thinker with leadership skills to drive exceptional business performance, and is passionate about education and training for all. Prior to joining Torrens University, Linda was Deputy Vice Chancellor and Director of TAFE at Swinburne University, Melbourne where she was responsible for maximising the dual sector advantage, driving the sustainability and social inclusion strategies across the University, and managing the TAFE Division.

Linda completed her Master of Science (Education Management) at Manchester Metropolitan University.

Professor Alwyn Louw

Vice-Chancellor

Professor Alwyn Louw was appointed Vice-Chancellor of Torrens University in January 2020 following a distinguished 20-year career in senior academic leadership and management experience. This included serving as President of the University and Academic President at Monash South Africa, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Academic and Research at Vaal University of Technology (South Africa) and Vice Principal at the University of South Africa.

A sociologist by training, Professor Louw has published extensively on a broad range of issues including societal development, gender equity, civil society and community, future of education, new generation universities, research and innovation. Professor Louw is also highly regarded for his work in building new approaches to higher education by ensuring access to high-quality education for all through a deliberate focus shift to inclusivity and affordability.

Professor Louw has extensive private, civic and charitable sector experience including serving as Chair and Director of South Africa Private Higher Education, Chair of Board of Directors for Africa, Operation Mobilisation, President of South African Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Chair Pro Christo Global Mission and Chair of Cancer Association in Kimberley (South Africa).

Professor Louw studied Sociology (BA Hons and Masters) at the University of the Free State (South Africa) and obtained his PhD in Sociology from Vista University (South Africa).

Dan Cockerell

Co-CEO of Torrens Global Education Services (TGES)

Dan is the former Vice-President of the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Florida. He attended Boston University, graduating in 1991, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science.

Upon graduation from Boston University in 1991, Dan moved to Florida and worked as a parking attendant at Disney’s Epcot Center. Subsequently, he joined the Disneyland Paris Management Trainee Program as part of the opening team and moved to France in 1992. While working in Paris, Dan held various management positions in Parking, Ticketing, Guest Relations, Food & Beverage and Human Resources.

After spending 5 years in France, Dan relocated to Florida and held a variety of executive roles at the Walt Disney World Resort, both in the theme parks and resort hotels. His last 9 years with the company, he was successively Vice President of Epcot, Vice president of Disney’s Hollywood Studios and eventually Vice President of the Magic Kingdom where he led 12,000 cast members and entertained over 20 million guests annually.

He earned his MBA in 2001 at the Crummer School of Business at Rollins College. In addition to his operational responsibilities, Dan was a keynote speaker for the world-renowned Disney Institute for 18 years. He has addressed open-enrollment participants from all over the world as well as attendees in custom programs including the USAA Bank, General Motors, the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Army, the Southern Methodist University Business School, Porsche A.G., and United Airlines.

He served on the board of Junior Achievement of Central Florida from 2004 to 2018, and was Chairman in 2010.

After a fulfilling and exciting 26-year career with the Walt Disney Company, Dan and his wife Valerie made the decision to set out on a new venture and start their own consulting and speaking business for five and a half years, traveling around the world sharing their experience and insight.

In December 2023, Dan joined as Co-CEO of Torrens Global Education Services and is currently based in Sydney, Australia.

Adam Guinea

Vice President, Finance – ANZ

Adam Guinea joined Torrens Global Education in September 2015 and was appointed to the position of Vice President, Finance-ANZ in July 2023, having previously served as Deputy CFO, Director of Finance-Planning & Analysis, and Director of Control. In his current role, Adam oversees Controllership, Commercial Finance, Planning & Analysis, Internal Controls, Accounts Payable & Procurement and Property & Facilities. Prior to joining Torrens, Adam held several senior finance roles in the UK and USA for financial services group Old Mutual, bringing significant experience and expertise in listed, multi-national environments. While grounding the focus of Finance in compliance, accuracy and efficiency, Adam is also passionate about being an effective partner to the business, providing insight, supporting decision-making and enabling the achievement of our mission.

Adam began his career in external audit at KPMG Australia, is a member of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand and holds a Bachelor of Business (Accountancy) from Queensland University of Technology.

Hugo Contente

Vice President People and Talent

Hugo Contente formally joined Torrens University in February 2018, and brings a great deal of experience having previously led Student Services and Human Resources teams across Europe. Along with a great sense of humour, Hugo brings a naturally collaborative approach, a deep commitment to our mission, and an appreciation of balancing business needs with student outcomes.

Hugo joined Laureate International Universities in 2011 as HR Director for Portugal, he forged a successful career in HR consultancy, focused on a range of training and development initiatives. In 2014 Hugo moved to Madrid, where he led the Student Services Department for Spain and Portugal, before becoming Vice President, Human Resources in 2016. In early 2017, Hugo transitioned to the role of Organizational and Talent Development Director for Laureate across Europe, Middle East, Africa and the Asia Pacific.

Hugo holds a degree in psychology from Universidade de Lisboa, and an MBA from AESE / IESE – one of the leading business schools in Portugal.

Darryn Melrose

Chief Marketing Officer & Industry Partnerships

Darryn was appointed Chief Marketing Officer (CMO)& Industry Partnerships in early 2023, following two years as General Manager Design and Creative Technology. Previously he had served as GM Design and Creative Technology from 2016 - 2019 and Chief Executive of Media Design School (MDS) from 2013 – 2019. MDS is Torrens University Australia’s sister institution in New Zealand. Darryn has a strong background in the tertiary education sector in Australia, New Zealand and globally, previously serving as CEO of Whitecliffe College of Arts Design, Fashion and Technology and as a Board Director for Santa Fe University of Art and Design.

Outside of education, his breadth of experience spans financial services, FMCG, retail, marketing, telecommunications, and digital sectors. His accomplishments include founding the Digital Leadership Group, elevating AIM Proximity as the second best direct/digital marketing agency in the world in 2009, and leading the world’s first entry by a bank into the energy and telecommunications retail markets. He was also the creator and leader of GlobalPlus, the triple-alliance of Air New Zealand, Bank of New Zealand and Telecom.

Todd Wegner

Vice President Strategy, Risk and Communications

Todd Wegner was appointed Vice President Strategy, Risk and Communications in February 2023. He leads a team to develop, co-ordinate and formalise Torrens Global Education’s strategic planning process, manage risks, drive social and environmental improvements across the organisation, and lead strategic communication. Todd was previously Chief of Staff to the CEO and President of Torrens University Australia since March 2019.

Todd moved to Torrens after spending three years at Laureate Education, Inc. in the United States as Senior Manager, Global Public Affairs. He oversaw, among other things, all B Corp related activities and initiatives, including leading the certification of 75 higher education institutions in 25 countries through the B Corp assessment. Prior to joining Laureate, he has worked at the United Nations, World Bank, and Inter-American Development Bank working on social and environmental sustainability initiatives. He also spent four years working as a civil engineer doing water and sanitation permitting and compliance for the US Environmental Protection Agency.

Todd holds an M.B.A. from George Washington University (United States), and a BS in Civil Engineering from Missouri University of Science and Technology (United States).

Rob McGowan

Vice President International

Rob McGowan was appointed Vice President International in April 2023, after previously holding the role of Senior Director of Industry and Employability.

Rob has extensive international experience in education, having been employed as Managing Director of Coventary University Recruitment and Admissions Ltd (CURA) in the UK. CURA is a wholly owned subsidiary of Coventry University Group, established by Rob in April 2019. CURA employed approximately 400 staff and delivered all customer engagement services for prospective and current students across the Coventry University Group. Rob was also Director of Sales (ANZ), Laureate International Universities until March 2019.

Rob holds a Bachelor of Science from Coventry University and an MBA from Torrens University Australia.

Professor Dominique Parrish

Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Academic

With a distinguished career in senior academic leadership positions, Professor Dominique Parrish was appointed Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Academic, at Torrens University in October 2023.

Prior to her appointment, Professor Parrish served as Pro-Vice Chancellor Learning and Teaching at Macquarie University, Associate Dean (Education) and Director Learning, Teaching, and the Student Experience, at the University of Wollongong.

A highly qualified educationalist, Professor Parrish has over 35 years of experience designing and implementing programs, solutions, and initiatives to meet organisation, project, program, and curricula outcomes and deliverables. Her research interests include technology-enhanced learning, learning-oriented assessment, student experience and engagement, and leadership and emotional intelligence.

Professor Parrish has served as the President of the Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education (ASCILITE) and was a Senior Editor of the Journal of University Teaching and Learning Practice (JUTLP).

Professor Greg Harper

Pro Vice-Chancellor, Business and Hospitality

At Torrens, Dr Greg Harper is Dean, Business & Hospitality, following his role as Pro Vice-Chancellor, Business and Entrepreneurship. In this role, he provides educational and academic leadership for Torrens University’s business and hospitality programs. A key focus is the growth of these programs in Australia by providing programs that ensure students are both very employable and resourceful.

These highly valued programs will be delivered in most capital cities and online. A second key focus is developing executive learning and development programs for organisations in Australia. The final key focus is the development of strategies to foster and facilitate industry engagement across the University to enhance the employment outcomes of graduates and to promote industry-engaged research.

Dr Harper is a highly experienced educator, executive, leader, and consultant. The former General Manager of Swinburne Industry Solutions, Greg has held a number of senior executive positions in the public and private sectors: for example, Chief Executive of a large Queensland TAFE Institute and a Senior Executive in the Queensland Department of Education and Training. He is a highly experienced organisational development consultant having worked with some of Australia’s leading corporations. As a leader, Greg’s focus is on developing people by providing coaching and developmental assignments.

Professor Scott Thompson-Whiteside

Executive Dean, Design and Creative Technology

Scott has more than 20 years of academic experience, leading various programs, schools and faculties across Europe, Asia and Australia. Trained as an industrial designer, he moved into design management and later acquired a PhD from the Centre for Studies in Higher Education at University of Melbourne. Scott is a strong advocate for internationalisation, industry-engaged teaching, high-quality student outcomes and interdisciplinary research. His own research interests intersect the disciplines of design education, higher education policy, design strategy and innovation.

Professor Matthew Mundy

Professor and Executive Dean of Health and Education

Matthew joined Torrens University Australia in October 2022. He brings a breadth and depth of academic experience from his previous roles as Academic Director for Monash Online and Education Director for Psychology at Monash University. A cognitive neuroscientist by training, he has built an international reputation for expertise in human learning and memory; as well as in education-focused research of teaching and learning innovation. Prof Mundy’s aim is to infuse research-driven change into tertiary teaching, through understanding of the psychological science behind learning and memory. He is particularly driven to ensure healthy mental health and wellbeing sit alongside effective and engaging learning ensuring high quality outcomes for all students. Prof Mundy studied Psychology and Neuroscience (BSc Hons, MSc) at the University of Liverpool (England) and obtained his PhD in Psychology from Cardiff University (Wales).

Professor Kerry London

Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Research

Professor Kerry London joined the Torrens University Australia as the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) in September 2020. She brings an extensive tertiary experience having held a number of senior leadership roles across Australian Universities.

Professor London is a prolific researcher and an international leader in her research field of the built environment, and particularly design collaboration, project management, technology adoption, ethics, supply chain economics and internationalisation.

She has authored more than 200 peer review publications and currently holds six Australian Research Council grants. She graduated from the University of Newcastle with Bachelor of Science (Architecture), Bachelor of Architecture and Master of Building (Research) and was awarded a PhD from University of Melbourne, Australia.

Dipu Sebastian, PhD

Executive Dean, Global

Dipu Sebastian is a highly experienced executive, leader, consultant and academic and has held a number of senior management positions in academia and industry. He is currently the Executive Dean-Global at Torrens University Australia (TUA) where his role is to build and leverage global academic and industry networks and relationships in key markets. Dipu’s research interest includes transnational education and higher education learning and teaching.

Prior to his appointment current position at TUA, Dipu has worked in senior management and professorial level academic positions within the University sector. He also serves on boards of other Australian higher education providers and has previously consulted with a number of education providers, global companies and international government agencies. He was the director of the largest international student recruitment company in South Asia with a network of over 60 offices across nine countries. After graduating with Bachelor of Science majoring in Computer Science, Statistics and Mathematics, Dipu completed his MBA with Queensland University of Technology, MEd with Griffith University and a PhD with Deakin University.

X
Cookies help us improve your website experience.
By using our website, you agree to our use of cookies.
Confirm