Next Ally Network Event:

Friday 17th May International Day against Homophobia, Biphobia, Interphobia and Transphobia

12-2pm FREE Make-your-own Rainbow Bread

Bedford Park, upper plaza outside Flinders Connect


The Ally Network is an initiative designed to enhance University culture by creating a more welcoming and inclusive environment for members of the Flinders community who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and queer (LGBTIQ).

Why have an Ally network at Flinders?
What is an Ally?
What an Ally is not
What to expect from an Ally
Expectations of an Ally
Becoming an Ally
Contact an Ally


Patronage of Ally Network

Professor Rob Saint has become the third patron of the Ally Network.  He follows on from the inaugural Patron, Joan Cooper, then Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), and the previous Vice-Chancellor, Michael Barber.


Why have an Ally Network at Flinders?

Recent Australian research and anecdotal evidence shows that prejudicial behaviours based on sexuality frequently occur in schools and tertiary institutions, including Flinders University. This is despite the existence of anti-discrimination legislation and policies. A visible presence of Allies on campus goes some way in creating a safer and more welcoming environment for both new and current members of the Flinders community who do not identify as heterosexual by:

  • Proactively addressing prejudicial behaviours and language
  • Providing a safe place for people to talk about issues related to sexuality and/or gender identity
  • Educating people about issues related to sexuality and/or gender identity 

What is an Ally?

Allies are staff and students who are knowledgeable in, receptive to and understanding of LGBTIQ issues.

Allies provide a safe place to talk for members of the Flinders community who seek support in a confidential environment.

Allies act as a contact point for staff or students and are able to discuss LGBTIQ issues in essays, curriculum, finding information, resources, support, coming out and other life issues.

Allies are representative of the entire Flinders community and are therefore not identified on the basis of their sexuality.

What an Ally is NOT

An Ally is not: 

  • someone with ready-made answers
  • necessarily a counsellor, nor necessarily trained to deal with crisis situations
  • necessarily able to provide assistance with the grievance process associated with harassment or discrimination.

The Equal Opportunity Contact Officers are available to provide this.

What to expect from an Ally

  • An open, accepting attitude
  • To be listened to, to be understood and be able to explore the issues
  • Confidentiality
  • A wide variety of referral avenues both on and off campus

Expectations of an Ally

  • Completion of essential training and interview process.
  • Act as a role model for the University in terms of their language and behaviour.
  • Proactively addressing behaviours considered prejudicial towards sexual diversity.
  • Knowing when to refer on / seek further assistance.
  • Attending occasional Ally meetings and information sessions on various issues.

Becoming an Ally

Because most people grow up in a world that is predominantly heterosexual, our beliefs, attitudes and behaviours are often shaped by this, with assumptions made and entrenched in our culture. However this ‘one size fits all’ model does not necessarily accommodate LGBTIQ people. The process of alliance to LGBTIQ people and LGBTIQ issues can take time. For this reason, awareness training and information sessions that examine heterosexist assumptions are an essential part of becoming an Ally. 

All Allies are subject to a screening process and training. Undertaking the training does not necessarily lead to becoming an Ally and you may decide the role is not one you feel comfortable with and so choose not to become an Ally.

If you are interested in becoming an Ally, please email or contact (08) 8201 3735.

Contact an Ally

Look for an official Ally sign on an office door.

Official ALLY door sign

Contact details


Name College/Unit/Organisation Email
Benjamin Authers (Dr) Law
Barbara Baird (Assoc Prof) Women's Studies
Gill Blacket(Ms) Library
Natalia Sanjuan Bornay (Dr) Student Learning Centre
Heather Brook (Dr) Women's Studies
Fiona Butcher Sturt Library
Lauren Butterworth Student Learning Centre
Monica Cations School of Health Sciences
Toni Crisci (Ms) Health, Counselling and Disability

Margaret Davies (Professor)

Vanessa Dorshorst (Ms) Digital Media Services
Kate Douglas (Associate Professor) English, Creative Writing and Australian Studies
Courtney Edlin School of Education
Julia Erhart (Dr)  Screen and Media 
Konrad Gawlik Health, Counselling and Disability
Steffi Graff (Ms) Student, Biological Sciences
Jessie Gunson (Dr) Health Sciences
Matt Heard College of Science and Engineering
Grace Hensel Student Council
Susan Heyes (Ms) School of Nursing and Midwifery
Khristin Highet (Dr) Health, Counselling and Disability
Vanessa Hounslow Health, Counselling and Disability
Maureen Howland Oasis Community Centre
Maggie Ivanova (Dr) School of Humanities and Creative Arts
Tristan Kennedy (Mr) Social and Policy Studies
Heath Kerley Yunggorendi 
Tristan Kilmartin Student Learning Centre
Deb King (Associate Professor) National Institute of Labour Studies
Lindsay Krassnitzer School of Health Sciences, Sturt
Anthony Langlois (Associate Prof) School of International Studies
David Lim (Dr) Flinders Rural Health, Victor Harbor
Emma Mackenzie Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences
Rachel Manning Professional Development Unit
Bradley Martin Flinders Living
Liz McNeill (Ms) School of Nursing and Midwifery
Keith Miller (Dr) School of Social and Policy Studies 
Amanda Muller College of Nursing and Health Sciences
Donna Neilson (Ms) Enrolment Services, Student Centre
Nathan O'Brien Science and Engineering
Chris O’Grady (Mr) Manager, Student Engagement
Lisa O'Neill (Ms) Equal Opportunity and Diversity
Donald Pate (Professor) Archaeology
Sophie Pointer (Dr) School of Medicine, Research Centre for Injury Studies
Kirsten Read Health, Counselling and Disability
Damien Riggs (Dr) SocialSciences
Andrea Rohde (Ms) Flinders Living
Rebecca Short (Ms) Health, Counselling and Disability
Nina Sivertsen (Ms) School of Nursing and Midwifery
Regina Sliuzas

Student Learning Centre
Ben Smith

Oasis Community Centre; Health, Counselling and Disability
Trudy Sweeney (Dr) School of Education
Paul Tait School of Health Sciences, Repatriation General Hospital
Rossi von der Borch (Dr) Humanities 
Zoë Walter Health, Counselling and Disability
Isobel Walter-Smith Information Technology Services
Nicola Williams Health, Counselling and Disability
Tiffany Winn Student Learning Centre
Jackie Wurm (Ms) Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching
Julie Zanker (Ms) Disability and Community Inclusion