Executive Committee

Chris Beardshaw

Chris Beardshaw

Chris has over ten years of experience in a wide range of water related and civil construction projects, providing project management experience and specialist technical skills. Chris has completed a Bachelor of Environmental Engineering (Honours) a Master of Engineering Science (Project Management) at UNSW and a Graduate Diploma in River Health Management. Previous projects include the design and construction of lakes, dams and wetlands, and experience in project cost estimation and construction budgets. Chris is experienced with a number of design and modelling software packages combined with on ground construction experience. Chris’s civil design and construction experience combined with hydraulic modelling expertise is particularly orientated towards Urban design and flood modelling issues. Chris has been on the Committee of Stormwater Victoria since 2011.

Jamie Tainton

Jamie Tainton
LDeng Pty Ltd
Vice President

Jamie has 14 years experience working as a Civil Engineer.  A great majority of this work has focused on Subdivision and Water Sensitive Urban Design through the land development process. Jamie has worked closely with local governments, developers, water retailers, and authorities like Melbourne Water to find efficient and economical solutions to many projects. Jamie has also worked extensively across the Victorian and New South Wales markets and is well versed in the expectations of Council.

With knowledge of and experience in the application of various planning, legislatures and Best Management Practices, Jamie has strengths in the feasibility, concept design, detailed design and construction/superintending phases of a variety of projects including roads, intersections, sewer, water supply, drainage, and water quality assets.

From this role as a graduate Civil Engineer through to the Management position that Jamie now holds, effective communication is one of her strongest attributes and is what differentiates her from her peers.  Jamie has run workshops, mentored staff, educated clients and negotiated outcomes. She enjoys the challenge of identifying an audiences’ motivations and using that, is able to achieves the best outcome for a project.

Sarah Watkins

Sarah Watkins
Melbourne Water

Sarah currently work at Melbourne Water in the Water Services Planning team, focusing on medium-term planning for growth and strategic integrated water management projects. Sarah work closely with Melbourne Water's Development Planning team, the retail water companies, Councils and DELWP. Sarah is also involved as an industry representative in the CRC Water Sensitive Cities. Previously Sarah worked as the Regional Stormwater Coordinator as part of the Living Rivers Program working with many Councils on improved stormwater management projects. Prior to Melbourne Water, Sarah spent 3 years at Storm Consulting where she gained experience in design and modelling of WSUD and SWH systems. Sarah also have been involved in the Little Stringybark Creek Project and the ESO (planning overlay). Qualifications include: B. Engineering (Environmental), B. Science, M. Integrated Water Management.

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Harry Virahsawmy

Harry is an urban water specialist with an engineering background and expertise in urban catchment hydrology and stormwater quality. From both research and consulting perspectives, he has over 10 years’ experience in the stormwater management sector. Harry specialises in Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD) and enjoys collaborating with landscape architects and ecologists to implement designs that achieve multiple benefits.  He is also passionate about the transformation towards a more water sensitive city and works closely with local and state government agencies to deliver sustainable water outcomes. Harry is actively engaged in the stormwater sector and regularly delivers lectures, industry seminars, and conference presentations.


Committee Members

Charlotte Beresford

Charlotte Beresford

Charlotte leads Clearwater’s regional Victoria program Building Capacity for Integrated Water Management in Victoria; a joint initiative with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning.

Charlotte brings over 10 years of experience in integrated water management. Prior to joining Clearwater, Charlotte coordinated the training portfolio for the International WaterCentre, building capacity in IWM for both domestic and international audiences. Her experience in IWM planning and delivery includes waterway health monitoring and rehabilitation, water sensitive urban design, policy and strategy development and catchment wide initiatives that rethink the interface between urban design, open space planning and urban water management

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Jamie Comley
Jamie Comley Consulting

Jamie is an Environmental Engineer, Urban Planner and Geographer who has worked in sustainable water management for over 12 years. His experience encompasses a broad range of strategic, technical, policy and research areas associated with implementation of integrated water management and water sensitive urban design. Jamie holds specialist expertise in capacity building, project/program design and integrating sustainable water management into land use planning. He is passionate about improving sustainability and liveability outcomes for our community and enjoys taking a big picture view and collaborative approach in addressing these issues.

Jamie's career experience includes working with various water authorities (including Melbourne Water), local government and private consulting firms, both in Australia and overseas. These days, Jamie runs his own consulting business in sustainable water management. 

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Rachelle Adamowicz
Melbourne Water

Rachelle is a Regional Stormwater Coordinator at Melbourne Water where she coordinates the Living Rivers program for the North-East and Inner metro Councils to advance sustainable stormwater management and water sensitive urban design (WSUD) for the protection of waterways and environmental benefits. Through her work, Rachelle supports a number of stages of stormwater management including policy, strategy, construction and maintenance. Through her Bachelor of Arts and Masters of Environment & Sustainability, Rachelle's academic background is strongly rooted in environmental science, sociology and philosophy. Rachelle has been in the stormwater industry for 7 years and prior to joining Melbourne Water, worked with the CRC for Water Sensitive Cities.

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Aaron Dowling

Aaron is a Civil Engineer with 8 years of experience in Water Sensitive Urban Design, stormwater management and strategy development. Throughout his time spanning across the public and private sector, Aaron has developed keen interest and skills in Integrated Water Management, bringing strong technical capabilities and innovative thinking to address challenges inherent.

Aaron began his career as a development engineer at Melbourne Water where he was responsible for the design and implementation of Development Services Schemes. In this role, he excelled at integrating drainage system designs with the planning process through his involvement in Precinct Structure Plans and Planning Panels.

More recently, Aaron has entered the private consultancy space where he has both contributed to and lead projects involving integrated water management plans, water balance assessments, updating industry guidelines and workshop facilitation. 

He is passionate about the design and implementation of innovative water servicing solutions that deliver beneficial environmental, social and financial outcomes. His broad knowledge of the development industry standards and practices is evident in his practical approach to problem solving and negotiation.

Aaron aspires to become both a technical specialist and a key contributor to policy development in the Australian water industry, advocating for beneficial and progressive change on the path to realising the vision of water sensitive cities.

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Tracey Pham

Tracey completed a Bachelor of Engineering (with honours) at Monash University, and worked for a short time at Western Water as a project manager. During her undergraduate degree, she investigated the cost and benefits of several stormwater harvesting projects in Melbourne. Tracey finished her Master of Engineering (Research) thesis titled “The Effect of Vegetation in Stormwater Biofiltration Sytems”. This project taught her the importance of persistence, optimism and patience to project delivery.

Tracey has also had various roles in the Civil Engineering world. She taught stormwater management to undergraduate students, and assisted PhD students with field or lab work as a Research Assistant. Tracey was a stormwater consultant at Cardno for three years and is now working at Afflux Consulting. The work varies depending on project and client requirements, however they primarily consist of:

  • Devising stormwater and flood management solutions
  • Drainage, flood and water quality modelling (primarily using 1D and 2D XPSWMM, MUSIC, TUFLOW)
  • Liasoning with clients and relevant authority
  • Flood mapping (MapInfo)
  • Stormwater Risk asessment

Bahman Esfandiar

Bahman Esfandiar

Bahman is a project engineer at Water Technology with more than 7 years of experience in Australia and overseas. Bahman has an in-depth knowledge in several areas of water industry. Bahman specialises in hydraulic modelling, stormwater drainage design, groundwater modelling and statistical analysis. His current qualification includes a Bachelor of Civil Engineering, Master of Engineering in Hydraulics and Hydrology and a PhD in Environment and Infrastructure Engineering. Beside his commitment in Water Technology, Bahman is a sessional staff at University of Melbourne where he mainly involves in teaching activates. 

Kate Matthews

Kate Matthews

Kate is currently a Project Manager in the Water and Environment team at Cardno with an urban planning background. The majority of her career has been in government statutory and strategic planning roles, most recently at Melbourne Water in their growth area approvals team. She has a special interest and experience in greenfields, infrastructure and water resource planning and holds Masters degrees in both urban planning (MSocSci) and integrated water catchment management (MEnv).

Having spent much of her career at the “pointy end” of stormwater policy implementation through the planning system, she is passionate about improving  outcomes both through capacity building for urban planners, but also improving integration of stormwater and IWCM planning into broader town planning processes, policy and statutory controls so that it can be more effectively implemented.


Sam Innes
City of Port Phillip

Sam has been involved in the stormwater industry for nine years, woking with local government in NSW and Victoria. 

He has key skills in the application of water sensitive urban design, playing a key role as a change agent and building organisational capacity. Sam is at home in both the technical and strategic aspects of stormwater and loves everything from planning the next big multi-stakeholder scheme to kicking the dirt in a raingarden. With a background in Environmental Science Sam is passionate about the environment and also has a history of waterway restoration.

 Colin McLeod

Colin McLeod
Maroondah City Council

Colin is a Civil and Infrastructure engineer who started his career working as a Civil Structural Engineer focusing on housing developments and drainage design. During this time, Colin has developed skills relating to foundation and construction; his passion however, was always with water and its interactions with the environment.

Colin is currently working with the local government as a Drainage Engineer, expanding his knowledge and skills of flood modelling and project engineering. His role consists of assisting developers to design proposals that reduce flooding across municipalities, whilst also identifying areas for draining improvements and water sensitive urban design. Through his work, Colin hopes to continually enhance surrounding communities through developments of new innovative solutions that will reduce adverse impacts on waterways and ecology surrounding those waterways.

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Elizabeth Smolinska

Liz is a Water Engineer with 8 years of experience in the consulting sector and currently works for Jacobs within the Surface Water team. Liz specialises in hydrological and hydraulic modelling, stormwater drainage design, water sensitive urban design and water quality modelling/monitoring. She has also completed a Master’s degree in Hydrology and Water Resources Management at Imperial College London and worked over in the UK on flood risk assessment type work. This is her second year on the Stormwater Victoria committee; following on from the organisation of SV’s technical events last year, this year she will focus on the organisation of the 2018 State Conference. Liz is also a committee member for the Engineers Australia Water Panel.

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Aram Manjikian
Beveridge Williams

Aram is currently the manager of the Water Resources Engineering team at Beveridge Williams. He has over twelve years’ experience managing and working on projects in the water industry, including hydrology and hydraulic modelling, surface water management, drainage design, stormwater harvesting schemes, and Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD). The range of fields that he has worked in include catchment management, major infrastructure works, and major drainage of land development projects.

His tertiary qualification is a Bachelor of Environmental Engineering (Honours) (Land and Water Management) completed at Monash University, Clayton Campus.

He has a passion for improving the health and function of waterway and drainage systems and contributing to the direction of policies within the water industry that will help achieve this, which is part of the reason why he has chosen to join the Stormwater Victoria committee.

Birgit Jordan

Birgit Jordan
Melbourne Water

Birgit is a Water Management Engineer and Senior Stormwater Quality Technical Advisor in Melbourne Water’s Catchment & Water Quality Planning team with 21 years’ of experience in the private and public water sector and 5 years in publishing in Australia and Germany. During this time Birgit worked across the fields of waterway, stormwater, sewage and drinking water management in design, construction, capacity building and strategic and catchment planning.

Besides serving environmental protection and the interests of the community, Birgit is passionate about stormwater industry leadership and advancing knowledge and technical capabilities.

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Philip Joyce

Philip is a Principal Civil Engineer and the leader of the Waterways and Stormwater Team at GHD based within their Melbourne Office.  He is a Chartered Engineer with the Institution of Civil Engineers (UK) and has over 20-years working experience, with 9 of these years gained working in the UK.

While his work broadly covers waterways and stormwater, he has a particular focus on sustainability and integrated water management.

In the UK, Philip began his career with Jeremy Benn Associates, after completing an MSc in Hydraulic Engineering, before then joining Black & Veatch

Emma Hendy

Emma Hendy
Wallbridge Gilbert Aztec

Emma has 10 years of experience as a Civil and Environmental Engineer in both Australia and the United Kingdon. Emma is currently a Senior Engineer at Wallbridge Gilbert Aztec with significant in South Australia before relocating to the Melbourne Office. 

Emma has undertaken numerous stormwater management plans of a local and regional scale, including policy review and working with local government to investigate sustainable water strategies. Emma has particular interest in Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD), stormwater harvesting and sustainable water management and has recently worked on a number of large scale stormwater harvesting and reuse concepts for South Australia including, the State Government 'Urban Stormwater Harvesting Options Study' and Eastern Region Alliance 'Waterproofing the East' project. Emma hopes to share the learning from working in South Australia and be a part of the future of stormwater management in Victoria.



Stormwater Victoria Sub Committee Representatives 2018 - 2019

State Conference and Awards

Chair:  Elizabeth Smolinska

Committee:  Jamie Tainton, Colin McLeod and Bahman Esfandiar

Drainage Manual

Chair: Birgit Jordan

Committee:  Aram Manjikan and Chris Beardshaw

Networking and Membership

Chair:  Charlotte Beresford

Committee:  Emma Hendy, Tracey Pham and Harry Virahsawmy


Chair:  Sam Innes 

Committee:  Philip Joyce, Aaron Dowling, Chris Beardshaw

Technical Events

Chair:  Rachelle Adamowicz

Committee:  Jamie Comley, Kate Matthews and Sarah Watkins