Meet the Council

The Council can have up to 14 independent members, appointed by the Governor in Council on recommendation by the Attorney-General. Members apply for their positions through an expression of interest process and are appointed for 3 years.

Members include legal experts and community advocates with extensive experience in criminal law, domestic and family violence, victims of crime, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander justice issues and youth justice.

Current members | Secretariat |Former chairs| Former members

Current members

Picture of Ann Lyons smiling

The Honourable Ann Lyons - Chair

Ann Lyons is a graduate of The University of Queensland—Bachelor of Laws (1977) and Queensland University of Technology—Master of Laws (1997). On 2 February 1977, she was admitted as a solicitor of the Supreme Court of Queensland and continued to work at Macrossan Byrne & Co. As a solicitor, Ann practised principally in criminal law and civil litigation. She was a tutor (1978–1980) and then lecturer (1980–86) in constitutional law and contract at the Queensland University of Technology's Law School and Built Environment School. She worked from 1987 to 1994 with the Queensland Law Society and became an accredited mediator in 1993.

Ann also worked as an anti-discrimination lawyer with Queensland Rail, was a legal member of the Social Security Appeals Tribunal (1995–2001) and a legal member of the Panel of Assessors under the Health Practitioners (Professional Standards) Act 1999 (Qld) (2000–05). She was appointed as the inaugural president of the Guardianship and Administration Tribunal (2000–06).

The Women Lawyers Association of Queensland named Ann their Woman Lawyer of the Year in 2004 in acknowledgement of her contributions to the Queensland legal profession. Ann has held a number of positions in various professional and charitable organisations including: canon lawyer and assistant judge, Brisbane Catholic Archdiocesan Matrimonial Tribunal (1984–1994); member and later chair, Brisbane Archdiocesan Communications Commission (1990–94); member and later chair of the Loreto College School Council (1990–97); member, Mater Private Hospital Research Ethics Committee (1998–2001); executive member, Council of the Australasian Tribunals (COAT) and convenor of the Queensland chapter (2006); member, Churchill Fellowship Queensland Selection Committee (2008–2016), member, Advisory Committee QUT Law School; member, Loreto Ministries (2015–18) member, Supreme and Federal Court Judges' Conference Committee (2012–18), and member, Legal Profession Breakfast Committee (2017-2021).

Ann was appointed a judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland in 2006 and was appointed Senior Judge Administrator (SJA) in 2017. She previously held positions on the court as the Criminal Listings Judge, member of the Mental Health Court (2008–2011), president of the Mental Health Court (2011–14) and chaired a number of court committees.

Picture of Elena Marchetti - Deputy Chair

Professor Elena Marchetti - Deputy Chair

Elena is a Professor in the Griffith Law School and a co-Lead of the Disrupting Violence Beacon, Griffith University, where she researches in the areas of criminal law, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the justice system and domestic and family violence. Elena has received two large Australian Research Council Fellowship grants to conduct research into Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander sentencing courts and partner violence, and more appropriate ways to evaluate Indigenous-focused criminal justice processes. Elena is currently researching the use of Indigenous Justice Reports in criminal sentencing hearings. She has recently been appointed to the Australian Research Council, College of Experts, is a Queensland Patron of the Justice Reform Initiative and is on the editorial board of the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Criminology.

Picture of Jo Bryant

Jo Bryant

Jo is currently working in the Aged Care sector after a lengthy career in child protection. She remains as a Board Member of the Daniel Morcombe Foundation. From 2019–2021 she was employed as the Regional Visiting Manager Sunshine Coast, Community Visitor Program, Office of the Public Guardian, managing a team of local Community Visitors and advocating on behalf of vulnerable children and young people in care and adults with impaired capacity. She was the CEO of Protect All Children Today Inc., from September 2004 to July 2019, a not-for-profit organisation that supports children and young people aged 3–17 required to give evidence in criminal court hearings as victims or witnesses to crime. Jo has consistently advocated for vulnerable people’s rights and facilitated change through evidence-based feedback.

Image of Judge Julie Dick

Julie Dick SC

Julie was a sitting judge of the District Court of Queensland for more than two decades. She was first appointed to the District Court in 2000 and served as a Judge of the Childrens Court of Queensland from 2001 and as the President of the Childrens Court of Queensland from 2007 to 2010. She was also appointed as an acting judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland from 2011 to 2012. Julie also co-chairs the Forensic Science Queensland’s advisory board and co-chairs the Forensic Justice Subcommittee of the DNA Advisory Board. She led a review of Queensland’s serious and organised crime laws and is also a sessional member of Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal.

Image of Matt Jackson

Matt Jackson

Matt is a barrister who practises in criminal and regulatory law. He was admitted as a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Queensland in 2016, as a Solicitor of the High Court of Australia in 2018 and as a Barrister for the Supreme Court of Queensland in 2018. In 2020, he was awarded a Master of Laws from QUT, with his thesis considering how sentencing reforms for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples might operate alongside the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (Cth) which establishes a right to equality before the law. Matt also has an interest in human rights and discrimination law.

Picture of Debbie Kilroy OAM

Debbie Kilroy OAM

Debbie was first criminalised at the age of 13 and spent over two decades in and out of women’s and children’s prisons. Driven to end the criminalisation and imprisonment of girls and women. Debbie established Sisters Inside, as well as her law firm, Kilroy & Callaghan Lawyers. An unapologetic abolitionist, Debbie’s activism work centres on dismantling the Prison Industrial Complex and all forms of carceral control and exile. With a firm belief that there should be ‘nothing about us without us’, Debbie established the National Network of Incarcerated and Formerly Incarcerated Women and Girls to centre the voices, experiences and aspirations of criminalised and imprisoned women and girls in order to change the face of justice in this country.

Jakob Lodziak

Jakub Lodziak

Jakob is the Acting Public Defender with Legal Aid Queensland (LAQ). He is a qualified barrister, working in a range of roles at LAQ since 2005.

Philip McCarthy QC

Philip McCarthy KC

Philip was recognised as a leader within the legal profession through his appointment as King’s Counsel in December 2019, having been first called to the Bar in 1997. Philip was appointed as the Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions with the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Queensland in 2021. Prior to this, he was a Consultant Crown Prosecutor with the Office of the DPP. He has extensive experience in criminal law and has worked on numerous complex and sensitive legal matters including homicide, sexual crimes, fraud and official corruption. Philip was a member of the Women’s Safety and Justice Taskforce. Philip holds academic qualifications in Law and Science and is considered a valued mentor to aspiring legal professionals.

Sherrie Meyer

Sherrie Meyer

Sherrie is the Chair of Board of Management, Queensland Homicide Victims’ Support Group (QHVSG). She became a founding member of QHVSG following her son’s murder in 1993. An accredited mental health social worker specialising in child trauma counselling, Sherrie has also been a victim support case manager, child safety support officer, and domestic and family violence support worker.

Picture of Dan Rogers

Dan Rogers

Dan is Principal at private criminal defence firm Robertson O’Gorman Solicitors. He is a Queensland Law Society accredited criminal law specialist and represents clients as a solicitor-advocate in all court levels across Queensland. He is published in various legal texts and journals on criminal law. Dan is also a Member of the Management Committee (former President) of Caxton Community Legal Centre, an organisation that supports vulnerable people facing the criminal justice system. Dan is a member of the Queensland Law Society Ethics Committee and a member (former Chair) of the Queensland Law Society Human Rights and Public Law Committee. He presently sits on the Queensland Law Society Council as the Attorney-General’s appointee.

Jon Rouse

Jon Rouse APM

Jon is the interim Victims’ Commissioner for Queensland. He served for 39 years with the Queensland Police Service, notably leading Taskforce Argos. He continues to be an ambassador for victim-survivors with a particular focus on child exploitation and sexual abuse. He has strong connections with the sector that supports victims in Queensland. Jon was the Queensland Australian of the Year in 2019 and he is the recipient of the Queensland Police Medal, the National Service Medal, the Exemplary Conduct medal, the Queensland Police Meritorious Service Medal, the National Police Medal and the Australian Police Medal.

Image of Brett Schafferius

Brett Schafferius

Brett is the Assistant Commissioner of Police for the Far Northern Region, based out of Cairns. He has extensive experience across a wide range of policing duties, particularly criminal investigations. He has worked across many areas of regional Queensland during this time and has led numerous successful serious criminal investigations. In his current role, Brett is responsible for providing effective policing services in one of the most dynamic and challenging regions in the State which encompasses communities in the Torres Strait and Cape York. He holds post graduate qualifications from Charles Sturt University and the Australian Institute of Police Management.

Image of Thelma Schwatz

Thelma Schwartz

Thelma is the Principal Legal Officer of Queensland Indigenous Family Violence Legal Service, an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Controlled Organisation providing legal and non-legal support services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander victims and survivors of family violence and sexual assault. She was previously a member of the Women’s Safety and Justice Taskforce.

Thelma has worked extensively with and for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, providing legal services and legal representation as a criminal defence solicitor with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service for over nine years.

Thelma identifies as of Torres Strait Islander heritage alongside her German/Samoan and Papua New Guinean heritage.

Picture of Warren Strange

Warren Strange

Warren is a lawyer and has been a member of the Council since 2016. From 2014 to July 2023 he was the Chief Executive Officer of knowmore, a national community legal centre assisting victims and survivors of child abuse with their redress and justice options. knowmore also helps people applying to the Territories Stolen Generations Redress Scheme. In this, and other previous roles including as the Director of Criminal Law at Legal Aid Queensland from 2004–2010, Warren had considerable experience working with client groups experiencing vulnerability and disadvantage, including youth and homeless people. Prior to joining knowmore Warren was the Assistant Commissioner, Misconduct at the Crime and Misconduct Commission (as it was then known


The Council is supported by a small, multi-disciplinary Secretariat administered by the Department of Justice and Attorney-General.

Image of April Chrzanowski

April Chrzanowski - Director

April is the Director of the Secretariat of the Queensland Sentencing Advisory Council, and has unique expertise in law, criminology and mathematics.

Having worked in the private legal profession, the university sector, and within Queensland government, she has applied experience in criminal justice policy, evaluation, research, and teaching.

April is deeply passionate about evidence-based justice policy.

Former chairs

Picture of John Robertson - Chair

John Robertson

June 2018 - August 2023

John was admitted as a solicitor in 1973 and formed his own firm in 1978, which ultimately became Robertson O’Gorman. He was Deputy President of the Queensland Community Corrections Board from 1991-1994. In 1994, he was appointed as a District Court Judge. He served in Ipswich, Brisbane, and, for the last 16 years leading to retirement in 2018, at Maroochydore. He was a Judge of the Childrens Court of Queensland for his whole judicial career and President of that Court from 1999-2001. Throughout his career, he has written and lectured extensively on issues relating to sentencing and the criminal law, including restorative justice, sentencing law, advocacy and the criminal law and the media. He is the author of the Queensland Sentencing Manual which was first published in 1999.

James Morton photo

James Morton

November 2016 – May 2017

While James was serving as the Council’s Chair he was a defence barrister, practising mostly in regional and remote areas of Queensland and the Northern Territory with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander clients. He was also a lecturer at Queensland University of Technology, focusing on criminal law, principles of sentencing and evidence law. In addition, James was doing research looking at the over-representation of Torres Strait Islander offenders within the criminal justice system. Previously, James was a senior lawyer at the North Australian Aboriginal Justice Agency and a lawyer for ATSILS in Townsville. James has also worked as a prosecutor and crown prosecutor in both Queensland and New South Wales. He resigned from the Council on his appointment as a magistrate.

Former members

  • Katarina Prskalo KC (July 2019–March 2024)
  • Boneta-Marie Mabo (May 2021–February 2024)
  • Debbie Platz (August 2022–March 2023)
  • Helen Watkins (11 November 2016–July 2022)
  • Cheryl Scanlon APM (May 2018–July 2022)
  • Mr B Costello (1 June 2018–15 September 2021)
  • Kathleen Payne (10 November 2016–12 July 2020)
  • John Allen QC (10 November 2016–18 December 2018)
  • Vicki Loury QC (1 June 2018–18 December 2018)
  • Deputy Commissioner Tracy Linford (10 November 2016–14 May 2018)
  • Michael Cowen QC (10 November 2016–23 August 2017)