Elly is a Councillor on Lismore City Council, and has a strong arts and cultural development background. Elly has been involved with LightnUp and the Lismore Lantern Parade since 2003, directing the fiery finale for most of that time, and currently directs the opening ceremony at Woodford Folk Festival. Elly is also an experienced events manager, working on numerous arts, music and community events and more recently in her work with Lock the Gate and Gasfield Free Northern Rivers.
Debrah has worked in the media industry for 25 years and is an award winning regional press photographer. For the past five years she has been cultivating her skills as a short filmmaker and last year was selected for Screenworks Creatability Project. In 2016 Debrah was elected to Clarence Valley Council and is a strong advocate for the arts sector and the many benefits it brings to the Clarence Valley. She has been the chair of the Lower Clarence Youth Performing Arts Committee (10 years) and chair of the Clarence Valley Cultural Committee (3 years). Debrah has a strong interest in young people, First Nation culture, visual story telling, performance art, history and world cultures.
My great great grandfather arrived from Germany for work at the ‘Lismore’ cattle station in the mid 1800s. My great grandfather was one of the first settlers of Ewingsdale and my grandparents, one of whom was a painter, settled in Byron Bay. I was born in Lismore and after a career in art education and the visual arts, I have finally returned ‘home’ permanently.
During my career, I worked as an Art teacher, Head Teacher, Visual Arts Consultant, Senior Education Officer and Exhibitions Officer (Artexpress). I have travelled student exhibitions to Japan and the USA, sat on the Board of Chroma Acrylics and have had my own work hung in the Tweed River Regional Gallery and Lismore Regional Gallery, as well as self publishing a book.
Now on Byron Shire Council, I am, as always, strongly committed to the cultural development and wellbeing of the area.
Ballina Shire Councillor
Representing Ballina Shire on the Board, Cr Dr Sharon Parry is a recently retired researcher, doctoral supervisor and research methods teacher from Southern Cross University. She has lived in the Ballina shire since late 1993 and raised four children here. This is her first term as a Ballina Shire councillor, a role to which she brings governance and analytical expertise and a strong commitment to the development of the arts communities in the Northern Rivers whose influence and strength she has seen grow and evolve over the past 24 years. She is honoured to support Arts Northern Rivers in this exciting period of global networking and regional expansion and development.