Our Patrons


Susan Duncan enjoyed a 25-year career spanning radio, newspaper and magazine journalism, including editing two of Australia’s top selling women’s magazines, The Australian Women’s Weekly and New Idea.

Susan has published two bestselling memoirs, Salvation Creek and its sequel, The House at Salvation Creek, and two novels, The Briny Café and Gone Fishing.

She also has a very special connection to Dorothea Mackellar, living in “Tarrangaua” in Pittwater. The historic home was built for Dorothea in 1925.

The Society is thrilled to have her as a parton for the Dorothea Mackellar Poetry Awards.


As Deputy Prime Minister of Australia and Leader of the National party from 2005 to 2007, Mark established an extensive network of contacts throughout Australia and East Asia, his focus at home was with regional Australia and particularly northern NSW. As one of Australia’s longest serving Trade Ministers from 1999 through until 2006 Mark lead negotiations resulting in Free Trade Agreements with the United States of America, Singapore and Thailand as well as launching negotiations with China, Japan and ASEAN.

Importantly, early in his ministerial career as Minister for Transport and Regional Services, Mark was instrumental in the establishment of the ARTC which operates the Hunter Valley rail network.

Mark brings significant experience as a company director having been chairman of Aston Resources and CBD Energy Limited, and is currently an independent director on boards of Virgin Australia Limited and Servcorp Limited which are listed on the ASX. Mark is also Director of Stamfordland Corp which is listed on the Singapore Stock Exchange and a Director Trustee of HostPlus Superfund and Chairman of Palisade Regional Infrastructure Fund.

As you can see our patrons have impressive CVs and work schedules. We wonder how they find time to support us. But they do and for that we are very grateful. With our many projects on hand it is wonderful to know we can count on these wonderful people for advice and support.