The Young Workers Centre Committee of Management is responsible for guiding the activity of the Centre, ensuring it is well run and delivering the outcomes for which it has been set up. Our Committee of Management is made up of young people and representatives from unions, not-for-profits and those from legal and judiciary backgrounds.
Current members of the Young Workers Centre Committee of Management are:
Colleen Chen - President
Colleen Chen works in private legal practice and is the co-founder of Interns Australia, a support and advocacy body for interns and students undertaking work placements in Australia.
In 2015, Colleen was awarded the National Youth Employment Award by the Department of Education and Training for her work raising awareness of youth employment issues in Australia and was selected as a delegate at the International Labor Organization in Geneva where she presented research on the the scope and systemic nature of unpaid precarious work among young people.
Jessica Dawson-Field - Vice President
Jessica is an employment lawyer in Maurice Blackburn’s Melbourne office. She holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Juris Doctor, and was admitted to practice in 2014. Before joining the firm, Jessica gained experience working in an employment and commercial litigation team for a top tier commercial firm, as well as a union. She was also a Student Research Fellow at the Centre of Employment and Labour Relations Law at the University of Melbourne.
Wil Stracke - Secretary
Wil is the Industrial and Campaigns Officer for the Victorian Trades Hall Council.
Jake Wishart - Treasurer
Jake Wishart is a social movement activist and a union organiser for the Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance (MEAA). His background is in community organising, campaigning and media having worked for the United Firefighters Union, Adam Bandt MP, Essential Media Communications & Radio Adelaide. Jake has a passion for fighting exploitation and empowering workers. He's co-founder and Treasurer of the YWC.
Sherry Huang (National Union of Workers)
Sherry Huang is an organiser at the National Union of Workers and a researcher for ABC Four Corners. She arrived in Australia on a working holiday visa in 2010 in order to research the working conditions of temporary migrants to Australia, and in January 2013 started her PhD at RMIT University.
Encouraged by her experiences working on a Working Holiday Visa and her research, Sherry founded T-WHY, a digital information service for young Taiwanese people working in Australia, in 2014. T-WHY has been a runaway success, with similar forums for young Hong Kong workers in Australia (HK-WHY) and young Koreans in Australia (KO-WHY) being established in 2015.
Yasser Bakri (Victorian Bar)(Non-voting member)
Yasser is a barrister with 6 years of litigation experience and immediately prior to going to the bar had a busy practice in the Industrial and Employment Law department at Slater & Gordon.
Simon Schmidt (Independent Education Union)
Simon is an official with the Independent Education Union Victoria Tasmania.
Abbey Kendall (Slater & Gordon)
Abbey is an industrial and employment lawyer at Slater & Gordon Lawyers.
The Hon. Peter Grey (retired Federal Court Judge)
In 2013, Peter Gray retired after 29 years as a judge of the Federal Court of Australia. Previously, he practised as a barrister in Melbourne, covering a wide variety of areas, with a specialisation in industrial law. He has a Bachelor of Laws with First Class Honours from the University of Melbourne and a Bachelor of Civil Law from Oxford University. While a judge, Peter also served as a judge of the Industrial Relations Court of Australia, a Presidential Member of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal, Aboriginal Land Commissioner, and a Deputy President of the National Native Title Tribunal. His interests include Aboriginal culture, forensic linguistics, mentoring, public speaking, music, canoeing and bushwalking.