The Hon. Kerry Sanderson AC

Chancellor of Edith Cowan University

The Hon Kerry Sanderson AC commenced as ECU’s fourth Chancellor on 1 January 2019.

From 2014 to 2018, Mrs Sanderson was Governor of Western Australia, the first woman to serve in this role.

Prior to being appointed Governor Mrs Sanderson served in a wide range of board positions, including as Chairman of Gold Corporation, Independent Chair of the State Emergency Management Committee, Non-Executive Director of listed companies Downer EDI and Atlas Iron and Director of the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research. She has participated in a number of charitable and community activities including as a Board Member of Senses Australia and of the Paraplegic Benefit Fund. She is currently Chair of the St John of God Health Care Board (since May 2018) and Chair of the not-for-profit WA Parks Foundation (since October 2016) as well as being patron of a number of charitable and community organisations.

She has held a range of senior positions in the public service and in business, including the London based Agent General for Western Australia (2008 to 2011), Chief Executive Officer of Fremantle Ports for 17 years (1991 to 2008), Deputy Director General of Transport for Western Australia and Director of the Economic and Financial Policy Division of the Western Australian State Treasury.

She was awarded the Centenary Medal in 2001 for her service to the maritime industry, was appointed as an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2004 for her service to the port and maritime industries and to public sector governance, and was appointed as a Companion of the Order of Australia in 2016 for her eminent service to the people of Western Australia. She was Telstra Business Woman of the Year (Western Australia) in 1996 and has been awarded Honorary Doctorates by both the University of Western Australia (Doctor of Letters honoris causa) and Murdoch University (Doctor of the University honoris causa).


BSc, BEcon, Hon DLitt, Hon DUniversity, FAICD


University Profile

Edith Cowan University (ECU) provides the ideal learning environment for people who want to reach their potential.

Located in Western Australia, ECU’s industry-relevant teaching and research, supportive study environment and award-winning facilities enable ECU students to do more than just survive in this world – they thrive in it.

Established in 1991, ECU took the opportunity to reshape the way higher education is delivered in a distinctive and inspiring campus environment.

Edith Cowan University courses are developed in consultation with industry, and teaching staff have extensive industry experience and networks. It’s why ECU students can expect placement opportunities, fieldwork, practicums and networking events as part of their studies.

This approach has been rewarded with five-star ratings for teaching quality over the past seven years, along with consistently high ratings for graduate satisfaction and generic skills, as reported in the Good Universities Guide.

ECU’s world-class research strives to make a difference to the community in Western Australia and beyond. ECU focuses on working with our communities, business and government organisations to solve real-world problems.

The University was named after Edith Dirksey Cowan, the first woman to be elected to an Australian Parliament. Her life was dedicated to the belief that education was the key to growth, change and improvement in society.

ECU received five-stars for our teaching quality in the Good
Universities Guide 2016 for the seventh year in a row.

Her example informs Edith Cowan University’s values as we pride ourselves in developing capable graduates who lead engaged and productive lives in the communities in which they live and work.

ECU has more than 27,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students. We also annually welcome over 4,000 international students, originating from more than 100 countries.

ECU’s eight Schools collectively deliver more than 300 diverse courses across Health & Medical Sciences, Engineering, Education, Arts & Humanities, Business & Law, Nursing & Midwifery, Science and the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts.

Courses are offered on our three campuses – Joondalup and Mount Lawley in metropolitan Perth and the South West Campus at Bunbury, 200km south of the capital city. ECU also offers a comprehensive suite of online study options.

Edith Cowan University incorporates the world-renowned Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, the oldest and most popular School of Education in Western Australia, the largest Nursing program in the State, and Kurongkurl Katitjin, our Centre for Australian Indigenous Education and Research.

To find out more, visit the Edith Cowan University website 



Edith Cowan University Council

The University Council is the governing body which controls and manages the operation, affairs, concerns and property of the University, in accordance with the Corporate Governance Statement. The University Council and the senior management team work together to ensure that the University achieves its goals.

Membership of Edith Cowan University’s Council is as follows:


The Hon. Kerry Sanderson AC

Chief Executive Officer - Ex-Officio

Professor Steve Chapman CBE – Vice-Chancellor

Appointed Members – Governor

Mr Eddie Bartnik (to 11 June 2021)
Mr John Cahill (to 8 August 2020)
Ms Denise Goldsworthy (to 29 April 2019)

Appointed Members – Council

Ms Kelly Hick – Deputy Chancellor (to 17 March 2021)
Ms Dorothy Collins (to 7 June 2021)
Mr Robert Radley (to 19 September 2021)
Ms Janelle Marr (to 24 August 2019)
Mr Brian Piesse (to 11 September 2019)

Elected Members

Associate Professor Geoff Lummis – Academic Staff (to 30 September 2021)
Professor Margaret Jones – Salaried Staff (to 26 September 2020)
Mr Stewart Lee – Student (to 10 October 2019)
Mr Kuenley Dorji – Student (to 10 October 2019)
Ms Natalie Dimmock – Alumni (to 31 December 2020)
Dr Susan King – Alumni (to 31 December 2020)


Other Governing Bodies

Other Governing bodies within the University include:

Council Executive Committee

Chair – The Hon. Kerry Sanderson AC, Chancellor

ECU Foundation Board

Chair – Professor Steve Chapman CBE

Governance and Nominations Committee

Chair – The Hon. Kerry Sanderson AC, Chancellor

Honorary Awards Committee

Chair – The Hon. Kerry Sanderson AC, Chancellor

Legislative Committee

Chair – Ms Kelly Hick, Deputy Chancellor

Quality, Audit and Risk Committee

Chair – Ms Denise Goldsworthy

Resources Committee

Chair – Mr John Cahill

South West Campus (Bunbury) Advisory Board

Chair – Mr Brian Piesse

Advisory Board of the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts Board

Chair – Vacant

Academic Board

Chair – Professor Mark McMahon