Psychologists for Peace

Committee Information

APS Interest Groups support members with special interests, assist communication between members interested in similar fields and advise the APS on issues related to their area of interest. Interest Group membership is open to all APS members and Interest group committee members are volunteer roles.


Below are details of the current committee and vacancies. If you are interested in joining the committee, click here to complete an expression of interest/nomination form to be considered. Please feel free to contact Interest Group committee members or APS Member Groups ([email protected]) with any queries or suggestions about the engagement for members of this Interest Group around Australia.




Dr Diane Bretherton
Di Bretherton is a Fellow of APS and has been involved in Psychologists for Peace since it was established in 1984. The history of the Interest Group is described in Peace Psychology in Australia, a Springer volume which she co-edited with Nikola Balvin in 2012. She was on the staff of the Psychology Department at Melbourne University for many years and became the Director of the International Conflict Resolution Centre there. Now retired from her position as an Honorary Professor at the University of Queensland she remains on the Faculty of the University of Nankai in China, as a Visiting Professor. Peace is a feature of everyday life, as well as international relationships, and she believes psychologists can use their professional skills and knowledge to help prevent violence and to promote peace in their different work contexts and specialities.


Ms Elizabeth Freeman
Liz has been a long-term member of Psychologists for Peace. She is an Honorary Senior Fellow, in the Graduate School of Education at the University of Melbourne where she co-ordinated the Master of Education (Student Wellbeing) program for many years. She was engaged in a 16-year professional development and research partnership between the University and the Catholic Education system focused on the creation of positive learning environments and student wellbeing through teacher professional learning. Liz’ research interests have included interpersonal communication and conflict management in education. She collaborated with Eleanor Wertheim and Margot Trinder on the Enhancing Relationships in School Communities (ERIS) project which built on the work of PfP.


Prof Eleanor Wertheim
Eleanor Wertheim is a community psychologist and clinical psychologist in the Department of Psychology and Counselling at La Trobe University. She has a keen interest in promoting cooperative methods for addressing conflict, which she has done at many levels. These include being part of the Psychologists for Peace project, Enhancing Relationships in School Communities (ERIS), as well as contributing to the UN Institute for Training and Research Peacemaking and Conflict Prevention Programme, which trains UN staff, representatives from regional organisations and diplomats from around the world. In addition to publishing in the field of conflict resolution and forgiveness, Eleanor has enjoyed being part of creating numerous Psychologists for Peace materials such as posters and calendars on peace and conflict resolution topics, including the Wise Ways to Win series, and she helped to found the Psychologists for Peace student Peace Research Award.

Committee Member

Prof Ann Sanson
Ann Sanson is a developmental and community psychologist, and a Fellow of the Australian Psychological Society and the International Society for the Study of Behavioural Development. One of the early peace projects that she helped to organise was Letters to Leaders in 1987, in which over 30,000 Victorian school children wrote to a world leader of their choice about their hopes and fears for the future. Her current work focuses on the climate crisis as a peace issue, and how it will impact on current and future generations of children. She is now an Honorary Professorial Fellow at the University of Melbourne.

Committee Member - SA Coordinator

Ms Leonnie Blumson

Committee Member - Facebook Coordinator

Ms Colleen Turner

Committee Member - QLD Coordinator

Ms Margot Trinder
Margot has been a member of Psychologists for Peace (PfP) since 1993. She worked as the Peace Education Coordinator at the APS, then moved to the University of Melbourne to coordinate the PfP Enhancing Relationships in School Communities (ERIS) projects. ERIS utilised many of the conflict resolution resources developed by PfP. Margot has been involved in the development of many of the PfP materials including posters, the Wise Ways to Win picture story book and professional development. Margot loves being part of PfP and working closely and regularly with other psychologists who are committed to using our psychological knowledge to promote peace at all levels.

Committee Member - VIC Coordinator

Mr Kane Gough
Kane is a clinical psychologist who joined Psychologists for Peace in 2019.

Committee Member - WA Coordinator

Ms Laura Curelic

Committee Member - NSW & ACT Coordinator

Mrs Alexandra Crawford

Committee Member - SA Coordinator

Ms Katherine Prescott

Student Representative

Miss Ariane Virgona
Phone: 0407173851
Ariane Virgona is a PhD Candidate from La Trobe University studying the impacts of cultural ideologies on identity processes and group categorization, in a bid to help increase positive intergroup interactions. Ariane joined Psychologists for Peace in 2019 and was the recipient of the 2019 Research Award for her honours thesis on the impacts of polyculturalism on well-being outcomes in an Australian sample. Currently, Ariane is the student representative and is active in developing and hosting Psychologist for Peace events.