GDF World Civil Society of Australia - Vic Branch

John Smithies

Director, Cultural Development Network (appointed December 2005)

John is an arts manager with experience working on policy development and a background of arts programming, specifically in cinema, new media arts, and screen education. He studied at the Tasmanian School of Art, the South Australian School of Art, Monash University and the Academy of Fine Art Karlsruhe, Germany. From 1992, John was Director of the State Film Centre of Victoria leading it through its development as the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) and was responsible for opening the new public facilities at Federation Square in Melbourne in October 2002. John left ACMI in 2004 and joined CDN in 2005 as Director.  Since then, he has worked with the CDN Board and a highly skilled team to support stronger arts planning within the cultural development activities of local government.

Peter (Pece) GorgievskI

Global Dialogue Foundation (GDF)

2007 – Present: Chief Executive Coordinator – General

Co-Founder: GDF, Unity in Diversity & Global Shipment.

GDF is a model for the citizen-civil sector in the frame of the UN- to work with all cultures and civilizations; addressing needs, preserving identity, cultural heritage and using dialogue as the instrument for building a peaceful coexistence.
2011-14: CL Network Vic Inc. / Whittlesea Community Leadership Network (WCLN) – Founding Vice Chairperson & Secretary. WCLN is a not-for-profit community association working under auspices of the City of Whittlesea, Victoria. It provides leadership training and capacity building via access to resources for community-based organisations and cultural and ethnic groups. WCLN facilitates intercultural dialogue and integration with mainstream society.

2001-2007: Managing Director, DGX – Asia Pacific. 

1999-2001: Vice President, Direct Container Line/NACA Logistics-FE Asia

1992-1999: Direct Container Line, various positions including State Manager.

George Salloum

President, Radio 3zzz 92.3 FM

I was born in Syria and migrated to Australia in 1974 as a young man

I have studied Aeronautical engineering in Melbourne and worked in that field till about 1985 and after that I have completed various studies in building and architectural studies and started my business in designing  and building various construction projects the business still operating till now.

Married with 2 children’s boys both university graduates.

Since I came to Australia I was involved in community volunteer work which became my passion I have represented the Syrian community in Australia in different ways since early 1980 and currently I am the president of the Syrian Expatriate Association of Victoria, convener of the Syrian broadcasting group at 3zzz radio station, and co convener of the Syrian advisory Group with Chris Pipers from Torque Aid which mainly consist of many NGO and some related government bodies, focusing on the latest crises and the plight of Syrian refugees around the world and trying to build bridges between different sectors of the community to charter a way for long lasting peaceful solution.

In 1989 I was a founding member of Radio 3zzz 92.3 FM, in 1996 I was elected to 3zzz as board member since them my position progressed to secretary of the association and then 2008 I was elected as the president of the association a position which is still current.

In 2009 I was elected as an executive of the NEMBC and that is the federal peak body of community radio stations in Australia and was reelected since to that position representing Victoria.

3ZZZ radio station is the largest ethnic radio station in Australia giving media access to over 80 different community in over seventy languages, it is the result of hardworking grassroots of thousands of members, the dedication of hundreds of volunteers the vision of 3zzz leadership is to promote dialogue understating and value the others contributions. It is indeed a mini united nations of various groups working together to advance the cause of global peace.

We can now be heard in three different ways: 92.3FM, Digital Radio and Live Streaming through the Web. We still have the weeks programs archived on the website. We have also been visited by foreign politicians, several Parliamentarians and hosted different forums related to our industry  

In collaboration with: United Nations Alliance of Civilizations “Unity in Diversity – World Civil Society”
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
“…the regional forums in Australia and India, organized by the Global Dialogue Foundation and local partners under the auspices of the Alliance, allowed the Alliance to expand its outreach and significantly develop its footing at grass-roots level.”
Official report of the Secretary-General Ban Ki moon to the UN General Assembly.