Caroline Downer is the Tuggeranong Arts Centre’s CEO. She has over 30 years’ experience in the arts sector – most recently as Executive Director of Arts North West and previously as Director of the New England Regional Art Museum in Armidale. She is committed to community arts organisations and is interested in a broad range of the arts, from visual arts and film to music. She has coordinated large regional music festivals and has served on a number of arts committees including the NSW State Government Classical Music Artform Advisory Board and as a peer reviewer for the Australia Council for the Arts. Caroline holds a B.Mus (Hons) (Music Performance), B.A.(Hons) (Fine Arts) and a Master of Arts Honours in Museum Studies from The University of Melbourne. In 2020, Caroline was awarded a Medal in the Order of Australia for services to performing and visual arts.
Caroline “Leena” Wall initiated the Tuggeranong Arts Centre’s “Fresh Funk” program in the year 2000, introducing hip-hop style classes to the ACT for the first time. Leena has a long history of dance training in various styles for (over 25 years), as well as an Honours degree in English and Drama and her dance teaching qualifications from QUT. As the Fresh Funk program grew, Leena was nominated as Young Australian of the Year for her ground-breaking work in the dance community. Leena is known across the ACT and beyond as a pioneer of Canberra’s dance scene, working consistently with schools and other organisations to consult and teach. Leena travels annually overseas to train in LA, New York and/or Japan, and has performed in pieces by Tricia Miranda, Tony Tzar, Andre Fuentes, Matt Steffanina and many others.
Roger Jillard has worked with young people for the last 15 years with roles ranging from rehabilitation, residential care and NDIS work. He has extensively studied art with a Bachelor of Visual Arts (Hons) ANU, and a Cert III Visual Arts, a Diploma of Visual Arts and an Advanced diploma in Visual Arts all from C.I.T. Other studies include a major in Sociology at ANU. He has trained in the areas of child protection, youth mental health, disability and trauma informed practice.
Cassidy Richens is a highly motivated marketing manager with over 20 years of experience in the Federal Government, not-for-profit and private sectors, and 10+ years in arts marketing and events. She has been a professional singer for over two decades, performing at festivals and events across Australia and recording and producing three albums with her folk band Cassidy’s Ceili (and, more recently, the Banksi Sisters). Passionate about live music and community arts, Cassidy has served as a Board Member of the National Folk Festival and continues to work as a volunteer for Canberra’s local Folk Society. She is also a professional music and festival reviewer for the Canberra City News. She holds a Bachelor of Communication and an Advanced Diploma of Graphic Design.
Tom Buckland is a practicing artist that has worked at the Tuggeranong Arts Centre in several roles over the last few years. Bringing his creativity and practical knowledge to the team, Tom has been involved in many projects including decorating spaces, installing exhibitions and also exhibiting his own work at TAC. Alongside this, Tom works at our front of house on weekends and assists TAC with events.
A Rebecca joined the TAC team in mid 2019 after returning to Canberra to study. She has worked in a variety of areas including at Front of house, events and with the CACD program. Since graduating with a degree in graphic design, she has been supporting Cassidy with developing promotional goods for the centre and keeping TAC up to date on social media.
Ann McMahon graduated with first class honours from the Textile Workshop at the Institute of the Arts (now School of Arts, ANU) in 2000. She completed a Post Graduate Diploma in Cultural Heritage Management at the University of Canberra in 2003. Her career in the arts in Canberra has included positions as: Gallery Development Officer at Australian National Capital Artists, ACT Arts Ability Officer, Public Art team member at artsACT and most recently, in Public Programs with Belconnen Arts Centre. Ann is a practising visual artist with a love of textiles going back to childhood. Her artwork typically expresses through its materiality and formal qualities ranging in scale from small wearables to utilitarian baskets through to large outdoor sculptures.
Completing Yr 12 at Lake Tuggeranong College in 2022, Thomas Griffith was also awarded both the Rotary Youth Award (for contribution to the Arts) and the Tuggeranong Community Council Perpetual Trophy in 2022. He has a keen interest in the arts, particularly Visual Arts, but has developed skills related to lighting and set design through his study of Drama. Thomas is completing an Arts Ready traineeship at TAC.
Naomi Little joined the Tuggeranong Arts Centre team in 2023 to help with the delivery of events behind the scenes. She is passionate about the local environment and is currently studying a Diploma of Environmental Monitoring and Technology at the Canberra Institute of Technology and actively volunteers with Park Care. With previous experience working backstage for live productions, she also plays jazz trombone and has an interest in creating 2D animations and digital art.