Council and Academic Senate support

Secretariat support

Under the leadership of the University Secretary, the Council and Academic Senate Services team helps UON make good decisions. They do this by providing professional governance support and advice to Council, its standing committees and Academic Senate.


We can help you with

  • Committee and Council reporting timeframes and deadlines
  • Upcoming committee agendas items
  • Reporting formats: which template to use when (one page template; standard template; reports to EC or Council)
  • Report content and the key elements requiring Council consideration
  • How to draft and develop a resolution
  • Meeting actions and outcomes reported to the Executive Committee
  • General governance advice
  • Election information, forms and advice

Who to contact

Team Member

Contact me about

Michael Dowzer, Acting University Secretary

The University Secretary serves as UON’s most senior advisor on governance and associated administrative, compliance and regulatory matters and is the key contact point for Council.

Melinda Wellham, Executive and Council Communication Officer

Executive support for the Chancellor.  Extending invites to Council members and Council member information distribution.

Hamish Lithgow, Senior Governance Officer

All Secretariat services for:

  • Council;
  • Strategic Development Committee;
  • Controlled and Associated Entities Committee; and
  • Nominations and Governance Committee.

Renae Morgan, Council Secretariat Officer

All Secretariat services for:

  • Finance Committee and
  • Research Committee.

Ziah Elliott, Council Secretariat Officer

All Secretariat services for:

  • Risk Committee;
  • Academic Senate; and
  • Teaching and Learning Committee.

Una Harris-McNeill, Council Secretariat Officer (Working days - Monday, Wednesday & Thursday)

All Secretariat services for:

  • People and Culture Committee;

What does a 'Secretariat' team do?

  • We provide governance advice to the Chancellor, Vice-Chancellor, President Academic Senate, Committee chairs and other senior staff to help them understand and carry out their governing and management roles in a way that complies with our legislative obligations
  • We set annual meeting cycles and reporting plans
  • We prepare agendas, running sheets, minutes and actions
  • We facilitate and provide advisory papers to Council
  • We organise, promote and conduct formal member elections and ballots for UON bodies like Council and Academic Senate
  • We induct new Council and Academic Senate members
  • We monitor UON’s interests in controlled and associated entities
  • We facilitate UON’s governing groups to operate and make decisions according to the University of Newcastle Act 1989 , University of Newcastle By-law 2017, and other relevant rules, policies, procedures and statutory obligations
  • We help staff and students understand what good governance looks like
  • We maintain UON’s internal legislative framework
  • We execute documents under the University Seal

Council cycle of support

Council cycle of support