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Western Australian Premier's Book Awards - 2010 Judging Panel

Western Australian Premier's Book Awards - 2010 Judging Panel

Tehani Wessely

For the past three years Tehani has been a judge for the Aurealis Awards, Australia’s primary speculative fiction awards and was the panel convener for 2 of those years. In 2009, she was invited to be the sole judge of the Katharine Susannah Prichard Speculative Fiction Awards, an annual short story competition. Tehani reads and reviews for publications such as Magpies, Fiction Focus, and ASif! (an Australian reviews website).

Tehani’s usual full-time role is a secondary school Teacher Librarian, where she has had sole charge of a large fiction and non-fiction collection for the past three years, taking responsibility for purchasing quality works to meet curriculum and reading for pleasure needs among students and staff.

For almost ten years she have been heavily involved in Australia’s speculative fiction independent publishing field, which has involved slush reading and making choices about story selection for publication. A number of stories and publications she has worked on over the years have been recognised in national and international Year’s Best compilations and awards.

Tehani was on the 2009 PBA judging panel.

Bev Jacobson

Bev is currently employed as a specialist children’s bookseller in Perth. She has Honours degree in French and classical Hebrew from Leeds University 1973 and a post graduate diploma in French and Dutch from Leeds Polytechnic.

From 1976 until 1991 Bev the buyer for a large, well-respected bookshop in Johannesburg, South Africa purchasing fiction, non-fiction, art and children’s books and also had time to be a proof reader for Harper Collins and Random House in South Africa. Bev has had past experience on the judging panel for the Donker Award for new South African writers of literature and poetry.

Her current employment requires her reading an extensive variety of children’s and young adult books, deciding on their suitability as far as language and content is concerned for the education market.   She orders titles for the school libraries in Western Australia and the Northern Territories and help schools choose suitable reading for class sets.

Bev was on the 2008 PBA judging panel.

Frank Palmos

Frank is a journalist, translator and author. His publications include ‘Ridding the Devils’ and ‘Indonesia’.

Frank was Australia's youngest foreign correspondent at twenty-one and spent most of his career in journalism in Asia. Through the Fairfax newspapers and magazines he was a Jakarta correspondent before reporting the Vietnam War for the Age newspaper. He was the only journalist to escape a Viet Cong ambush in Saigon in 1968. Palmos wrote the English version of The Sorrow of War (London : Secker and Warburg, 1993), a novel by Vietnamese writer Bao Ninh. Palmos's English version is based on the translation from the Vietnamese by Vo Bang Thanh and Phan Thanh Hao, with Katerina Pierce.

In 2010 the Society of Authors (UK) listed Palmos' translation as one of the 50 outstanding translations from the last 50 years. Palmos also wrote The Vietnam Press : The Unrealised Ambition (1995). Based in Perth he commuted to Asia on writing and film assignments.

Frank has been recognised for his journalistic endeavours receiving the Readers Digest First Person Award and Harper’s Bazaar Short Story Award.

Frank was on the 2008 and 2009 PBA judging panel.

Dr Rose Lucas

Dr Rose Lucas works as a freelance writer, poet and academic. She is currently  Senior Lecturer in the School of English, Communications and Performance Studies at Monash University. Rose has published widely in the areas of women’s poetry, feminist theory, cinema studies and the various intersections of literature and psychoanalysis. Rose is also a published poet whose work has appeared in Meanjin, Heat, Australian Book Review and the Aroostoock Review (University of Maine), and Best Australian Poems of 2007. She has been a Fiction Reader for Penguin Books Australia and has reviewed poetry and fiction for the Sunday Age, scholarly work for various academic journals, and poetry for Australian Book Review.  Dr Lucas has been a judge for the Mary Gilmour Poetry Prize and the Monash Poetry Prize and has had a number of articles, reviews and poems published in journals and collections including Meanjin, Australian Book Review and Heat. She has been short listed for two poetry awards and in 2009 was runner up for the Seagull Poetry Prize in the Williamstown Literary Festival.
Rose was on the 2008 PBA judging panel.

Dr Lucy Dougan

Lucy is a published poet with a long and varied education and employment history in the arts, specifically in the area of literature. She has had considerable experience judging literary work, poetry in particular, in her work as poetry editor of the Australian literary journal HEAT. In addition to this she has acted as a judge for various poetry prizes. These include The Roland Robinson Award (City of Lake Macquarie), The Tom Collins Poetry Prize (FAWWA), Vibewire, The Trudy Graham Literary Award, and the poetry prizes associated with The Arts ACT Awards.  She has taught Literature, Film and Creative Writing at a number of universities including The University of Western Australia, Curtin and Newcastle University and has published articles, reviews and poems in a number of journals and collections including Westerley, Indigo, An anthology of Australian Contemporary Poetry and The Oxford Book of Australian Poetry about the Family.  Most recently in 2008 a collection featuring her own poetry entitled White Clay was published by Giramondo.
Lucy was on and chaired the 2009 PBA judging panel.

Emeritus Professor John Tonkin

Professor John Tonkin has been a previous judge for the WA Premier’s Book Awards in 2008 and has taught Philosophy and History at a number of schools and universities including United Nations International School in New York, University of Melbourne and the University of Western Australia. Most recently from 1999-2002 he was Inaugural Head, School of Humanities at the University of Western Australia, a faculty which incorporated the disciplines of  Classics, Ancient History, European languages, History, Linguistics and Philosophy.  He has published a number of books on History and Religion including Cathedral and Community: A History of St George’s Cathedral, Perth and The Trial of Luther and has had an extensive number of articles published in journals.  

John was on the 2007 and 2009 PBA judging panel.

Miffy Farquharson

Miffy has over 20 years experience as a teacher-librarian ranging from Year 12 to Kindergarten students.

She has been a judge on the Children’s Book Council of Australia for 2008 and 2009 that involved the reading of over 750 titles over 2 years.  Miffy has experience with the Aurealis Awards being a judge on the Young Adults category and was the convenor of the Young Adult judging panel for 2010.

This is her first year as a judge on the WA Premier’s Book Awards.

Judi Jagger

Judi has been a teacher-librarian in Tasmania and Western Australia.  Since 2005 when she returned to WA she has worked at the CMIS Evaluation in the Education Department and was joint editor of the print journal Fiction Focus (new titles for teenagers). Judi is currently the judge for WA on the Children’s Book Council of Australia Awards. Her passion is Young Adult literature and enjoys children’s fiction as well.

Judi has her own reading and literature blog titled

This is her first year as a judge on the WA Premier’s Book Awards.

Assoc. Prof Robyn McCarron

Robyn is an experienced academic in the fields of literature, theatre studies and communications and an experienced supervisor and marker of undergraduate and postgraduate writing, including creative writing projects. Since 2006 Robyn has been on the judging panel and committee of the City of Bunbury Shorelines Writing for Performance Competition and is Deputy Chair of the Bunbury Regional Entertainment Centre Board of Management.

Robyn is an avid fiction and non-fiction reader.

This is her first year as a judge on the WA Premier’s Book Awards.

Prof. Jan Carter

Jan was the inaugural winner of the WA Literary Awards Non-fiction title for her book ‘Nothing to Spare’ in 1982.  Jan has been living and working in Melbourne for a number of years and is currently running a writers’ workshop program at Monash University, had held staff appointments as professor at the University of Melbourne and Deakin University and is a Visiting Professor at Latrobe, Griffith and Queensland Universities.  She has recently been appointed to the Board of an Aboriginal Trust in the Pilbara and is a frequent visitor back to WA especially during our Perth International Arts Festival period.

This is her first year as a judge on the WA Premier’s Book Awards.

Dr Jean Chetkovich

Jean completed her doctorate in history at UWA. It was published as Irish Migration to Australia post 1945. She is the joint author with Deborah Gare of A Chain of Care: a history of the Silver Chain Nursing Association 1905-2005, has published many articles on Irish-Australian topics and was a contributor to the Historical Encyclopedia of Western Australia. Her research interests include migration, Irish-Australian topics, cemeteries and memorialisation of the dead in WA. She was the Associate Director then Director of the Centre for Western Australian History at UWA from 2003-2010 and also served as the chair of the Editorial Board of Studies in Western Australian History during this period.
Jean has served on the Committee of the History Council of Western Australia and is a member of the Royal WA Historical Society and many other historical associations. She was a judge of the State Records Office Margaret Medcalf Award from 2008-2010.
Jean is an Honorary Research Fellow at UWA and is currently editing a 350 page book on the Centenary History of UWA with Professor Jenny Gregory. Jean is in the Collection Development section at the State Library of Western Australia.

This is her first year as a judge on the WA Premier’s Book Awards.

Polly Low

Performer, dramaturg, playwright, script assessor and teacher at WAAPA, Polly has over 30 years experience in the Arts and is an experienced assessor of scripts adding great value to the judging panel.  Polly also has a love of children’s books, adult fiction and non-fiction.

Polly was one of the inaugural judges for the Richard Burton Award for new plays, has recently assessed plays for Black Swan Theatre and is currently working on her Masters (Creative Arts).

This is her first year as a judge on the WA Premier’s Book Awards.

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Page last updated: Tuesday 4 September 2012