Victoria Ryle is the co-founder of Kids’ Own Publishing. Her passion for the power of the child’s published voice began 30 years ago when she saw first hand the impact of children reading and sharing their own books and culture. Her experience with partner Simon Spain in education and the arts has led to her vision of a world where books by children for children strengthen literacy, language and culture in all communities.
Jo first experienced the empowering process of children making books with Kids’ Own Publishing with the children and families program at the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre in 2013. Soon after, Jo joined the KO office team and now spends her time keeping the business side of KO running smoothly. Jo brings experience in community arts from The Boite and arts education at MamBO Museum of Modern Art, Bologna, Italy.
Anna Dollard has worked in publishing and the arts for over 20 years and before joining Kids’ Own Publishing was closely involved in the establishment of the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program in schools around Australia. But once an editor always a project manager. Anna’s role is to match artists with different community projects in which children are the authors and illustrators of their own books.
Community Liaison & Cultural Advisor
Myles Russell-Cook is a Doctoral candidate and lecturer in Design Anthropology and Indigenous Studies at Swinburne University, Melbourne, Australia. Prior to this he undertook postgraduate studies in Fine Art, and undergraduate studies in Creative Media and Commercial Photography. He has undertaken archival and museum research throughout Australia, North America and London. He is a board member for Banmirra Arts, the leading the regeneration of the cultural tradition of possum skin cloak making. He was appointed a member of the AIATSIS (Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Islander Studies) Council in May 2015.
Community Partnerships Coordinator
Bel Schenk brings a mix of experience to Kids’ Own Publishing, having worked with young people and cultural development for the past decade. Beginning at the South Australian Writers’ Centre, she then moved to Melbourne where she joined Express Media as the Co-CEO and Artistic Director of Express Media. Here she implemented writing and media programs such as The Under Age, National Young Writers’ Month and The Signal Express. Bel has also worked in Arts and Cultural Development for Darebin City Council and has written three books of poetry, the latest being Every Time You Close Your Eyes, published by Wakefield Press in 2014.
Geek in Residence
Daniel Donahoo is the Director of Project Synthesis and works at the intersection of play and technology. Daniel has been a toy librarian, a professional clown, a policy maker, a speechwriter, a researcher and author, a fellow at a public policy think tank, a web developer, a public relations manager and childcare worker. He is currently Kids’ Own Publishing’s resident Geek, funded by the Australia Council’s Geek in Residence program, having helped produce the WePublish App and becoming obsessed with the power of the 8-page book.