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Jim Mason – Working Hard  for Bellarine

I am fortunate to have been raised on the Bellarine, to have studied in Geelong and to subsequently gain rich and diverse experience. I offer maturity, leadership and resilience along with a fresh, consultative, independent approach to Council work

My wife Lynne and I have a wonderful 47-year partnership. She provides wise counsel and together we achieve so much.

I Was Raised on the Bellarine.

  • I attended Point Lonsdale Primary School and Queenscliff High School
  • It was a wonderful environment to grow up in - living in a rural zone on the outskirts of Point Lonsdale
  • Growing up I used to swim, horse-ride, surf, cycle, and played football. I enjoyed working with farm animals and I gained basic farm skills.
  • In my early years I milked the house cow (and goats) and sold fruit on the road during summer
  •  At 17 (1965) I grew an acre of onions and learned the complexities of onion marketing and resilience from failure.


Tertiary Education and some Significant In-service Training

  • Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (2018) (GAICD)
  • Global Cluster for Early Recovery – United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) – Trained Early Recovery Advisor, 2016.
  • Humanitarian International Legal Frameworks: Australian Civilian Corps (ACC) (Oct 2012)
  • Asia Pacific Civil Military Centre of Excellence: US Peace Institute Rule of Law 20 -24 Jun (2011)
  • Personal Security and Communications 2009
  • Master of Arts (International Relations). Deakin University - Conflict and Security, Asia Pacific Politics, International Refugee and Humanitarian Law; (2008).
  • Governance Certificate IV (2008) William Angliss
  • Training of Trainers (TOT) SPHERE International Humanitarian Standards Project, (2007).
  • In Service Humanitarian Training (1992-2006) – Do No Harm, Country Programme Leadership, Programme Design, Assessment, Reporting and Monitoring, Humanitarian Practice and Personal Security; Protection Capacity Building (PRO Cap) UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs UN OCHA/RedR Dookie (May 2009); Basic and Advanced Security UN Training; Hostile Environment Awareness Training(HEAT);  UN SSafe Training, Security and Personal Safety, Philippines.
  • Trained Technical teacher’s certificate (1972). Hawthorn Technical Teachers Certificate.
  • Associate Diploma of Civil Engineering (1968); Gordon Institute of Technology.

Honours and Decorations:

  • Member of the Order of Australia (AM) 2008. For service to international relations through humanitarian assistance to people in developing countries.
  • Overseas Humanitarian Service Medal (Mozambique and East Timor)
  • Australian Defence Medal For Service
  • Australian National Service Medal 

Professional associations:

  • Member of Registered Engineers Disaster Relief (RedR) Australia/United Kingdom (UK) Mentor Pool.
  • Member of RedR/Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) Post Disaster Recovery Team Register
  • Member of RedR/AusAID Humanitarian/Emergency Response Register.
  • Member RedR Australia 2009


Professional Background.

Civil Engineer – I began my professional career as a Civil Engineer and was with the State Rivers and Water Supply Commission Victoria. For four years.

Military Service – In 1968-1970 I was called up and did two years National Military Service in the Corps of Engineers.

Maths Science Teacher – I taught (1971- 1987) and was head of Maths Science departments (25 teachers) for 8 years.

International Humanitarian Work. (1987 -2016)

I have worked in the humanitarian space since 1987 in a broad range of complex natural emergency fields and in situations where there has been a transition to the recovery phase. For many years I worked at the level of Country Director for various Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) in places such as Botswana, Mozambique, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kosovo, Sudan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Indonesia, East Timor, Philippines and Papua New Guinea (PNG). In the new millennium I often worked with UN or Government agencies as a consultant or through RedR Australia. Most recently I was deployed by the Dutch Government to facilitate improved collaboration in the design and drainage of Bentiu Refugee Camp Southern Sudan. Prior to that following Cyclone Pablo I was appointed by the Australian Government as a Post Disaster Recovery Team Leader (PDRT) in the Philippines to work in collaboration with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Philippine Government. In Jun 2016 I completed the UNDP Early Recovery Advisor training in Bangkok, supported by RedR and I currently remain on the Australian Government RedR/DFAT early response registers.

Agriculture and the Environment (Marcus Hill Farm - Hillside Springs - 2006 - Current)

I have had a lifelong interest in agriculture and with Lynne purchased our first farm in the Otways in 1975. We have owned farmland ever since and now run cattle in Marcus Hill.

 Since the purchase of our 67 ha. Marcus Hill farm in 2006 my wife and I have devoted much time locally. Sustainability is our prime aim. A major Bellarine Waterway, (Yarram Creek) runs through the property and we have revegetated the riparian zone and removed invasive species. We have registered Sixteen ha. with The Trust for Nature and it is now under covenant and protected forever.

Inputs to the Community:

Prior to my overseas service and while in living in Colac/Otway Shire, (1972-1987) I served in voluntary capacities on:

  • Colac Hospital Board
  • Community Youth Support Scheme Committee
  • Colac Environment Group

Since returning to the Bellarine  (1999- Current) I have been:

  • President of Bellarine Landcare (2007-2010) and (2014-2017)
  • Chair of the Mannerim Memorial Indigenous Garden Committee (2015-2017)
  •  Granted the COGG 2009 World Environment Day Outstanding Service to the Environment Award
  • A member of GOGG Rail Trail Advisory Committee (2007-2017)
  • A member of Bellarine Community Health
  •  A member of the Queenscliff Cruising Yacht Club
  • A member of the Swan Bay Environment Association (2000-2017)
  • A member of Geelong Environment Council (2014-2017)
  • Operational (now non- operational) member of CFA (Mannerim)
  • Qualified First Aid St Johns Ambulance.


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Various photos of Jim Mason