Dr Andrew Rowland
Chief Executive Officer
Andrew has long been avid fisher and enjoys many types from marron, trout and redfin to offshore species and everything in between. He loves getting on the water at all opportunities and will be found in his boat or kayak or wading the flats most weekends.
Andrew studied at Murdoch University and has a Ph.D. in Fisheries Science. Andrew is currently the Chief Executive Officer of Recfishwest, a role he has filled since 2012. Andrew is a Director for Fishability (formally Fishers with Disabilities Association). Andrew is also a member of the Recfishing Research Steering Committee, which provides advice to the FRDC. Andrew also sits on the Certification Advisory Body the WA MSC initiative and is a member of the Premier’s Marine Science Roundtable.
Andrew believes that rec fishing provides significant social, cultural, health and economic benefits to WA and is passionate about maintaining and building this value for the benefit to the whole community. He understands that natural resource management requires striking a balance between competing user groups, and various (often diverse) stakeholders in protecting the resource which they value. A key component to achieving the right balance is ensuring the interest and values of West Australians who enjoy fishing are effectively represented to protect and develop great fishing experiences.
Leyland started at Recfishwest as a Research Officer in 2012, before being appointed to Principal Policy Officer in 2013. This position transformed into Operations Manager in 2016. As Operations Manager, Leyland is responsible for ensuring Recfishwest’s day to day business activities are running smoothly and providing the best possible outcomes for the states estimated 752,000 recreational fishers.
Leyland has a Bachelor’s Degree with Honours in Aquaculture and Seafood Science and has managed aquaculture training facilities in both Western Australia and the Northern Territory. Leyland has spent over ten years as a lecturer at various universities and has practical experience in the culture of a number of tropical and sub-tropical species.
In addition to tertiary postgraduate qualifications, Leyland also possess an unrestricted Coxswain Certificate, Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, Certificate IV in Small Business and Frontline Management and is a recent graduate from the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Fishing has always been a passion for Leyland and he finds the challenge of helping to protect the rights of the recreational fishing community and improving fishing experiences to be very rewarding.
Having grown up in a small South West community, Matt had a strong community spirit instilled in him from a young age. His love of fishing was borne out of family trips to Denmark on the south coast, and later with time spent on Christmas Island in the late 90’s. Matt has fished in almost every corner of WA and believes that the fishing opportunities on offer here are world class.
Matt attended the Recfishwest Future Leader program in 2008 and has been involved with Recfishwest in some capacity ever since. On completion of a 1 year term on the Board in 2009, Matt joined the Recfishwest team as a staff member in October 2010. He took on the Regional Policy Officer position in 2013 before becoming Recfishwest's Fishing Development Officer. In July 2019, Matt became Recfishwest's Operations Lead and he enjoys his work visiting regional communities, providing solutions and promoting increased fishing opportunities across the state.
Tim is Recfishwest’s Communications Manager and looks after media and corporate communications. Tim started with Recfishwest in April 2014 as our Community Engagement Officer but has since evolved into the role of Communications Manager.
Tim has six years experience as a water resources expert and spent time as a Senior Water Planner at Department of Water, WA State Government, and Queensland State Government’s Department of Natural Resources and Water. Tim also has vast experience within the AFL and WAFL systems, coaching at WAFL level while spending time in Tonga, South Pacific, as an AFL Ambassador for game development and community engagement.
Tim has a Bachelor of Science in Aquatic Resource Management and Aquaculture from Central Queensland University. A mad keen fisher, Tim can usually can be found on weekends throwing stick baits from Perth’s beaches chasing Salmon, Tailor or Herring. In the summer Tim loves his flats fishing and is usually waist deep in the Swan River chasing Flathead or Yellowfin Whiting.
James started at Recfishwest in 2013 after completing the Young Future Leadership program, working part time while completing a Marine Science Degree at Murdoch University. In 2014 James took part in the National Seafood Industry Leadership Program, completed a Diploma in Fisheries Compliance and Management from the Kimberley Training Institute and started Honours studying citizen science as a tool for monitoring artificial reefs.
He graduated in mid-2015 with a Bachelor of Science with Honours in Marine Science and started fulltime employment with Recfishwest. In the Office James assists with the administration of the Recreational Fishing Initiatives Fund, conducts research into citizen science monitoring methods and the development of Habitat Enhancement Structures and assists in recreational fishing research around Western Australia.
Growing up in Esperance, James has a passion for the marine environment and in particular fishing. Surface fishing for pelagics and jigging for demersals is James’ favourite ways to spend a weekend and after fishing all his life James enjoys working at Recfishwest to do his part for fishing in WA.
Aaron discovered his love and passion for fishing and the marine environment at a young age, following a move to Perth from India. Growing up, he spent countless hours reading fishing magazines and online articles in order to build his knowledge on his favourite pastime.
Aaron completed his degree in Marine Science at Murdoch University in 2017, while also volunteering at Fremantle Tafe with their aquaculture program. Aaron took part in and completed the Young Future Leadership program in 2018, along with assisting at fishing events where he represented Recfishwest. In late 2018, Aaron joined Recfishwest as a member of the policy team, where he looks into the background information and decision making processes that go into fisheries management. He has a great passion for fisheries management and acknowledges the many benefits recreational fishing can bring to an individual or the community. Making sure the views of the state’s recreational fishers are justly represented in management is a challenge that he finds gratifying.
Being a very keen fisher, Aaron loves walking the beaches casting surface lures for tailor and during summer finds himself often wading the flats where he enjoys chasing predominantly yellowfin whiting and other sportfish willing to engulf a top-water offering. He has also enjoyed success in fishing for pelagics from shore and top-water fishing for GT’s. Through his position at Recfishwest, Aaron strives to do his part in ensuring that all West Aussies have the same opportunities that he’s had and give them a better chance of getting that fish of a lifetime.
Alanna began her career in the fishing industry as a volunteer fishing clinic instructor for Fishability and then Recfishwest. In early 2018, she joined Recfishwest as an Operations Officer, where she manages the State-wide Sunsmart Fishing Clinic Program and the Western Australian Fishing Safety Strategy working with land managers, government agencies, the community and key partners to develop and promote initiatives that bring fishers home safe. In addition she plays a key role in the Operations team by maintaining communication between the organisation and the community, planning and implementing campaigns, liaising with media and Government departments, developing and managing print/website content, producing web and social media content and writing and editing communiques
She is a graduate of the 2018 Affectus Young Future Leaders (Next Wave) Program and has recently graduated from the 2019 National Seafood Industry Leadership Program. She aspires to make people aware of the challenges recreational fishing faces in the future and encourages everyone to play a proactive role in ensuring healthy aquatic ecosystems and sustainable fish stocks for the future. She is enthusiastic about people being able to access our aquatic resources in a safe and enjoyable way and reap the physical, mental, health and social benefits that fishing can bring.
She loves being involved in community based programs, teaching people how to fish and playing a role in influencing and educating others on good health and environmental practices within the fishing community.
Fishing Clinic Coordinator
Kate has a long running association with Recfishwest, assisting with fishing clinics since 2012 and has since become our Fishing Clinic Coordinator.
As a qualified trainer and assessor, Kate is passionate about developing consistent and relevant training material and sharing skills and information with keen learners of any age or ability.
She works from the office two days a week and liaises with the team of volunteer clinic instructors regularly.
“I didn’t grow up with a fishing family, but I married into one and I have grown to love it. Working at Recfishwest is excellent, I learn something new or interesting about recreational fishing every week.”
Steph is the Project Officer and part of the research team at Recfishwest. In her role she has been planning and coordinating various Reef Vision projects as more artificial reefs continue to be deployed around the state. These Reef Vision projects focus on the development of the artificial reefs to improve fishing around the state.
Steph completed her Marine Science degree in 2015 at Murdoch University, and her Honours degree at Curtin University in 2018. Since graduating, Steph has gained field and lab experience through various internship and volunteering opportunities in South Australia, South Africa, and the WA Museum. She began an internship program with Recfishwest during January 2017 and has been involved in the fishing community.
Steph’s most recent studies analysed the data obtained by an industry remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV) to assess fish living on subsea infrastructure in Thailand, upon their conversion into artificial reefs.
She has previously worked with Dr Julian Pepperell, collecting samples and data of pelagic fish species, at separate game fishing comps in Exmouth and Dampier, as part of an ongoing Australian wide operation to establish DNA sample banks for future studies. Steph continues this research project for Recfishwest.
Steph is an experienced diver and enjoys fishing and all things artificial reefs. She has a great understanding of Western Australia’s fish species and enjoys working with the community.
Research Associate MSc
Born and raised in Esperance, Sam developed a passion for fishing and the marine environment following countless camping and fishing trips along WA’s southern coastline. Sam enjoys the variety of land-based fishing experiences on offer; whether he’s chasing schools of salmon on reef platforms, catching herring and squid from the local jetties, or sitting on a remote beach next to the campfire waiting for the mulloway to bite. He also enjoys getting in the water and observing the diverse and unique marine life WA has to offer, and finishing the session with some freshly-caught abalone for lunch is an added bonus.
Sam decided to pursue his passion for the marine environment further, moving to Perth and enrolling at the University of Western Australia in 2015. He completed a Bachelor of Science majoring in Marine Science and Zoology in 2017, and a Master of Biological Science specialising in Marine Biology in 2019. During this time, he studied the assemblage of fish on the Perth Fish Towers and how they compare to the fish found in the surrounding natural habitats.
Through his studies, Sam became involved with Recfishwest. He is a graduate of the Young Future Leaders program, has shared his fishing knowledge at Troutfest, and helped conduct biological sampling at Gamex fishing tournament. Sam is now part of the Research team at Recfishwest, and is keen to contribute to creating better fishing experiences around the state through artificial reefs.
Nick has completed a Bachelor of Science majoring in environmental science and marine science. While studying, he participated in the 2016 Recfishwest Young Future Leaders Program and undertook multiple research trips to the state's southwest to survey fishers regarding the artificial reefs in Dunsborough, Bunbury, and Mandurah.
Upon graduating university in 2017, Nick got a job at 888 Abalone in Bremer Bay where he moved to start full time work as a Hatchery and Grow-out Technician. In July of 2018, he was unfortunately diagnosed with cancer and was forced to move back to Perth for treatment. During his recovery, he started work with Recfishwest as a Communications and Research Assistant.
Nick has always been passionate about fishing, always happy to try and master the many different fishing styles available to West Aussies. From scooping crabs and snaring marron, to fly fishing and casting mulies from the beach, to throwing lures in the snags for bream and jigging dhufish from the boat, Nick has a world of knowledge on all things fishing. He has travelled much of the north-west fishing locations including Shark Bay, Exmouth, Karratha, Broome, and the Rowley Shoals. Nick always favours fishing locally on the weekend out of north metro waters with his Dad, saying the best times of his childhood were chasing fish with his old man on the weekends. In the last few years, he’s transitioned to spearfishing after meeting an avid diver during the Young Future Leaders course. Nick is also a member of the WA Undersea Club and believes people should embrace the challenge of the various forms of fishing available to us in WA.
Starting out as an work experience employee, Sedin quickly gained a position in the organisation as an Operations Assistant.
Growing up North of the River, Sedin has fished almost every beach in the metro region chasing tailor, snapper and mulloway. Making use of bait, surf rods and heavy sinkers to cast out and letting it sit while using smaller rods to catch whiting and herring is his bread and butter.
Sedin is currently undertaking a degree in Computer Science majoring in Software Engineering and spends most of his time either studying or fishing with his mates from school and work. He has a keen interest in recreational fishing management, editing and designing social media posts and handling data resources. He also doesn’t shy away from experiencing new adventures and travelling for community events and research.
Yvette is the Office Manager at Recfishwest and is a Certified IV Bookkeeper assisting the Accountant. She has been employed with Recfishwest since 2006 and during that time has had various roles which have included, memberships, fishing clinic co-ordinator and events.
Her responsibilities ensure that the daily operations run efficiently and her organisational skills keep our team running smoothly whilst assisting the CEO and Operations Manager.
Yvette previously came from an insurance background of 20 years and has been self-employed in that same industry.
Yvette has seen many changes during her 10 years at Recfishwest and is proud to be part of such a dynamic team.
Membership and Events Officer
Ruth joined Recfishwest in August 2014 as the Administration officer, however her strengths in events and customer service shaped this position to that of Memberships and Events officer and she enjoys the varied nature of her role and meeting the members.
Her experience as a previous business owner in the retail sector, as well as having worked in both a wide variety of Government and Non Government organisations, has provided Ruth with the skills and experience required to deliver quality customer service outcomes. Ruth has been instrumental in helping the Purple Fly Fishing Program become a great success for women recovering from breast cancer.
Raised by a very keen fisher with the mantra “the only right you have is the right to be useful and make a difference” she enjoys cricket, AFL and cooking desserts.
Vanessa is the accountant for Recfishwest and holds a Bachelor of Business Degree from Edith Cowan University.
Vanessa is a member of the Institute of Practicing Accountants. This is a requirement of Recfishwest’s important role in administering and co-ordinating the Recreational Fishing Initiatives Fund.
Vanessa views her work for Recfishwest since 2012 as a pleasure as well as a privilege.
Her experience as a previous wholesale business owner, as well as having worked for organisations from insurance to a company with a chain of stores, has provided Vanessa with the acumen required to deliver audit compliant financial reports and budgets that consider the complexities of multi-year project cost centres.
Vanessa strives to maintain good financial control whilst remaining flexible to the demands of the dynamic organisation that is Recfishwest.