Collectively, the Senior Leadership Team team brings an abundance of knowledge and experience in educational management as well as many years of experience in a variety of schools.
Perhaps most importantly they bring with them an unwavering passion for the educating young women, and they are wholly committed to building a school that equips PLC students with skills to confidently face the challenges of our fast changing world.
Dr Kate HadwenPrincipal
A respected educator, Kate has pursued a career in education inspired by her own love of learning and her passion to empower young people to step outside their comfort zone and to flourish in our increasingly complex world. Kate’s background includes teaching and leadership roles in Junior, Middle and Senior schools, research and lecturing in the tertiary sector, and National project management in school-based pastoral care programmes. Kate also has outstanding academic qualifications having completed a Bachelor of Teaching (1996), Graduate Certificate of Education (2006), Master of Education (2007) majoring in Educational Leadership and a Doctor of Philosophy (2015).
The ninth Principal to lead PLC, Kate was thrilled to have joined the PLC community in Term 4, 2015. PLC has a one hundred year history of outstanding leadership that has built a strong foundation for the College as we embark upon our second century and an exciting future. To select the successful candidate, the PLC Council initiated an international search. The position attracted a large and strong field of candidates from Australia and overseas and the Council appointed Kate after an extensive process. The Council is confident that Kate’s inspirational leadership will ensure that PLC continues to build on its reputation as one of Australia’s leading and innovative girls’ schools.
Dr Andrew CousinsDeputy Principal
Andrew (PhD., B.Mus., B.Sc., P.Grad.Dip.Ed., A.Mus.A. (Piano), MACE, MACEL) joined the staff of PLC in 2016 from Somerset College Queensland where he was Dean of Teaching and Learning. During his career he has held positions including Dean of Middle Years Learning, Head of Science and Assistant Head of Science. He has taught Chemistry, Mathematics, Middle Years and Primary Science, and Choral studies. Andrew is a passionate believer in striving for better student outcomes by providing students with opportunities to discover their talents and their own path to adulthood.
Mrs Sharon AndersonHead of Senior School
Our current Head of Middle School since 2005, 2017 will see Sharon take on the role of Head of Senior School. Sharon came to PLC in the role of Head of Middle School English in 2003, having previously been recognised as an exemplary teacher, achieving Level 3 status in the Government system, and serving as acting Deputy Principal at Gnowangerup District High School. A native of Western Australia, Sharon first earned her Diploma of Teaching in 1982, later completed a Bachelor of Education and has recently been awarded her Graduate Diploma in Educational Leadership. She is also an accredited coach with Growth Coaching International. Sharon spent a significant part of her teaching career in rural Western Australian schools and her passions for pastoral care, wellbeing, together with building and belonging to a community, have their origins in these experiences. Sharon believes in inclusivity, acceptance of others for who they are, and in tolerance. She believes in and is committed to a holistic education that develops all aspects of a girl and helps her to define who she is, as a contributing member of the community.
Ms Louise PeytonHead of Junior School
Louise has a depth of leadership experience that includes more than 20 years in Catholic and Independent education in Melbourne and Darwin. Significantly, she brings skills developed during her time as Head of Junior School at Genazzano FCJ College in Kew; Deputy Principal – Head of Primary at Loreto Mandeville Hall in Toorak; and, most recently, from IB school Kormilda College in Darwin where Louise was appointed as the inaugural Head of Primary.
Louise has committed time to “in class” work to stay connected with students at each of her schools. Passionate about service learning and the importance of having a global focus, Louise has led student experiential activities in Vietnam and Timor-Leste, as well as volunteering on projects locally and in Peru, Argentina and Nepal. Within both the Catholic and Independent sectors, Louise has held specific leadership roles in literacy, mathematics, curriculum development and student wellbeing. She was a member of the Senior Leadership Team at each of her schools and is a member of the Independent Primary School Heads Association and the Australian Primary Principals Association.
Louise completed her under-graduate studies at Australian Catholic University (ACU) Melbourne, and has since completed a Masters of Education at LaTrobe University, a Post-Graduate Diploma in Educational Studies (Student Wellbeing) at the University of Melbourne, a Masters of Educational Leadership at ACU, and a Graduate Certificate in Theology at the University of Newcastle.
Rev Gary van HeerdenChaplain
Rev. Gary van Heerden has been the chaplain at PLC since 2011. Gary served as a Methodist minister for 20 years in a number of different contexts in South Africa. He is also a registered Counselling Psychologist who lectured Psychology at university and saw clients in a private practice. Gary holds a Master of Theology degree and a M.A. in Psychology.
Ms Laura AllisonDirector of Wellbeing
Laura Allison (BSc, BPsych, MPsych, ProfCertEd(PosEd)) is a registered psychologist. Laura has worked in all three sectors of education in WA and has also worked within the area of corrective services. Prior to commencing at PLC, Laura was the Director of Wellbeing at Sacred Heart College. She is currently completing her PhD with the University of Melbourne as part of the Visible Wellbeing Project researching the relationship between teacher practice and student wellbeing. Laura was also recipient of the 2015 WA School Psychologist of the Year Award
Chris RobinsonHead of Staff
Chris Robinson has been at PLC for 28 years. She joined PLC as a teacher in the Technology and Enterprise area as a Textiles Specialist, and has seen many of her students go through PLC to be prominent Australian Fashion Designers.
Chris has held many exciting roles which include House Advisor, Year 12 Co-ordinator and has held her current role as Head of Staff for the past 9 years. She is an accredited coach with Growth Coaching International and has recently completed a Post Grad. in Educational Leadership.
Mr Sam KronjaDirector of Finance & Corporate Services
Sam commenced at Presbyterian Ladies’ College in 2007 to head the Finance Team, which expanded into Operations and Corporate Services in 2012. Sam’s portfolio includes Finance, Non-Teaching Operations, Maintenance, Development Projects, Insurance and Risk Management. Sam commenced work with Ernst & Young in 1991 and was admitted as a Chartered Accountant with the institute of Chartered Accountants in 1994. He has worked in a number of sectors including mining exploration, entertainment, information technology, managed investments, retail, advertising and education. His other qualifications include being an Associate of the Governance Institute of Australia and a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management.
In the education sphere Sam’s is currently a Board Member of the Association of Independent Schools WA (ASIWA) and a Board Member of Chrysalis Montessori. Previously Sam has been a Board Member of St Paul’s Catholic Primary School, Business Manager at Corpus Christi College and a Member of the Catholic Education Office Finance Committee.
In a previous life Sam experienced life as a WAFL and AFL field umpire and coach which has fashioned a ‘thick skin, that which has proved a very useful for an accountant working in education.
Ms Anna HuDirector of Information & Learning
Anna Hu has been working in Education with a focus on embedding technology in teaching and learning for over 20 years. Since August 2010, she has been on the Executive Leadership Teams at both Presbyterian Ladies’ College and Scotch College in Perth, both Cisco Exemplar and Apple Distinguished School, as the Director of Information and Learning Technologies (ILT). This involves leading change across two independent and culturally distinct organisations. Her portfolio includes the overseeing of ILT Curriculum and Technical at both schools, and the Library, Information and Research Services at Scotch College.
Anna has been building on her previous ILT strategy, which incorporated modern technologies with the primary aim to enable, engage and empower learners at both schools. Her focus is now to now build Doing IT Smarter: optimising existing technology and services and leveraging new technology solutions to inform learning and business processes. She is driven by teaching and learning that is engaging, effective, and most importantly – fun.
Anna is an Apple Distinguished Educator and Adobe Education Leader and has run numerous workshops and presentations, physically and virtually, for audiences locally, nationally and internationally.
Mrs Keryn McKinnonDirector of Strategic Communications
Keryn has more than 24 years’ experience as a senior corporate communications and media manager, public affairs adviser, newspaper editor and senior journalist.
In her previous role as Manager, Government Media in the office of former Premier Colin Barnett she oversaw the strategic communications planning for the Premier and Liberal and National Cabinet Ministers. Her expertise covers stakeholder engagement, crisis communication, media relations, event management, corporate communications and marketing and promotion across both traditional and digital media.
Keryn has been a Senior Account Manager at public relations firm PPR where she delivered strategic communications advice to a range of public, private and not-for-profit organisations. She is a former News Editor at The West Australian, was Education Writerat The West for nearly four years and was the first female, and youngest person, appointed Editor at the Kalgoorlie Miner.
With two daughters of her own, Keryn is passionate about girls’ education.
Ms Vivien WhiteheadDirector of People and Culture
Vivien is a Talent Management professional with over 20 years’ experience in corporate environments, including professional services (accounting and law), healthcare, banking and tertiary education. Her roles have included both strategic and operational responsibilities, as well as team leadership and senior management roles, with Australian and international experience. She holds a Bachelor of Psychology and a Master of Organisational Psychology from the University of Western Australia.
Vivien has significant experience across generalist HR, as well as expertise in talent management and succession, resourcing, organisational change, coaching and development, culture and engagement, and diversity and inclusion.
Vivien believes great talent strategy can have a profound impact in an organisation, by helping to channel the capability and commitment of people to achieve amazing things. She is passionate about helping individuals, teams and organisations reach their full potential.
Ms Liz LangdonDirector of Boarding
Liz is embarking on her sixth year as Director of Boarding at PLC. Her career has always involved working with people and mostly at schools. After completing a Bachelor of Education, majoring in Special Education, she was appointed to Merredin Senior High School and after one year moved to Eastern Goldfields Senior High School for two years. Liz then worked at both Kewdale and Thornlie Senior High Schools before commencing at Christ Church Grammar School, where she worked for 15 years with the senior school support and special education team. Liz established INSTEP at CCGS and was the Head of Craigie House for nearly five years. During this time, she completed a Masters of Educational Management.
Seeking a career change, she embarked on a Graduate Certificate of Career Development and worked in a variety of part-time positions at Scotch College, Fun Track, TAFE and co-managed the Underground Backpackers. She then accepted a full-time position as a Careers Advisor at Penrhos College, a role she thoroughly enjoyed for six years.
Liz lives on the PLC campus with her husband Drew and daughters Sophie and Gabrielle. Working in boarding is a full-time role that envelops your life, so she is incredibly grateful to have a supportive and involved family, with whom to share the journey.