Our Tutors

Our tutors come from a variety of backgrounds, with experience gained from employment, life skills and/or academia. No matter what their background, all of our tutors come with a love and knowledge of their subject area and a desire to share it with others – for which ‘we others’ are forever grateful.

The links and notes provided are publicly available and provided on behalf of the tutors by U3A, Port Adelaide.

Pat and Alan discussing course content
Pat and Alan discussing course content

Dr Mike Steer

Dr Steer is a senior research scientist at SARDI Aquatic Sciences with particular expertise in cephalopod (squid, octopus, and cuttlefish) biology and ecology.  His central focus is to undertake research that underpins the sustainable harvest of South Australia’s key Marine Scalefish resources (i.e. Snapper, King George Whiting, Garfish, Calamari) as well as assessing their relative stock status for State and Federal Governments.  Over the past decade his research has resolved the stock structure of South Australia’s Garfish resource, contributed to restructuring the Marine Scalefish hauling net sector, developed population indices for the Calamari fishery, and addressed key concerns surrounding South Australia’s iconic Giant Cuttlefish population.  Today’s presentation will discuss the high profile Cuttlefish issue where the unique spawning population up in northern Spencer Gulf dramatically declined in the face of burgeoning regional industries, what we know and don’t know about the species, and how research is endeavoring to explain the dynamics of the population.

Dr Jeff Olliver

Jeff Olliver has over fifty years’ experience in geosciences exploration, mining, management and

Education since graduating from Adelaide University in 1960. He was Chief Geologist, Mineral Resources in SADME from 1977 to 1987 and established his consulting practice at McLaren Vale in 1989. He gave a presentation to our group earlier this year titled ‘Coloured sands of Maslins Beach’.

Dorothy Heinrich

Dorothy Heinrich is a dynamic author who resides in Adelaide, South Australia.

In her previous working life she has been an academic, lecturing and tutoring for many years in human physiology and pathophysiology.

During that time and since, an interest in people and other cultures has led her on journeys with her husband to diverse places, from China and countries of south-east Asia to continental Europe and Iceland, a note-book and camera always in her luggage. She spoke to our group earlier this year about Robert Clark Morgan and Kangaroo Island.


Melissa Heywood

Melissa is an advocate and speaker for Aged Rights Advocacy Service (ARAS) that provides information about Rights of older people using aged care services and safeguards to protect the aged person’s future. Melissa will describe what ARAS does and how they can be used as an advocate.

Sue Garforth

Sue has previously presented sessions to U3A Port Adelaide on six hundred years of the history and culture of Anglo Saxon England, from the departure of the Romans in 410 AD to the Norman Conquest, including a look at the major players from Alfred the Great to William the Bastard.

Brian Samuels

Originally a history teacher, Brian Samuels has been a voluntary and professional historian and a heritage activist for over 40 years. Since the mid-1970s, when teaching in Port Adelaide, until 1994, Brian was the Honorary Historian of the Port Adelaide Historical Society. He has initiated, collaborated and completed many heritage and historical projects, including many associated with Port Adelaide. Brian’s activism and advice helped establish the Port Adelaide State Heritage Area in 1983, which has continued to enrich the Port experience for residents and visitors alike. He was also the Founder (and Vice President) of the Historical Society of South Australia in 1974 and has written over 150 publications, ranging from books and booklets to journal and newspaper articles.

Dr Michael Sullivan


Dr Michael Sullivan is a lecturer at Flinders University in International Relations.   He spends considerable time in China, giving lectures.

Trevor Steele

Trevor Steele is an Australian author who was born in 1940. He was a teacher and travelled extensively. Many of his books are influenced by his travels but he has also written some books with Australian themes, such as the persecution of Aborigines in Tasmania. Although now officially retired, he still teaches history at a Steiner school. He speaks several languages, including German and Esperanto.


Ted Manka

Ted worked as a Housing Research and Liaison Officer with the Commonwealth Dept of Housing. He has also been a part time tutor in Economics at the University of South Australia. He has been closely involved with the Housing Industry in a range of roles until he retired in 2013.

Jason Shute

Bio coming soon

Susan Steel

Susan was born in Sydney, lived in country NSW before escaping to Adelaide. She trained as a librarian in Sydney and worked in many different libraries including municipal, university, legal and a state premier’s (Don Dunstan’s) personal library. She also has an Arts degree and worked in high schools for 15 years. Currently Chairperson U3A, Port Adelaide.

Chris Flavel

Chris is Clinical Supervisor at the UniSA Exercise Physiology Clinic, School of Health Sciences, Division of Health Sciences, UniSA, City East Campus.   He will probably bring a couple of his students to do the presentation on Tuesday, 30th May.


Geoff Howe

A life member of Adelaide U3A, Geoff is a regular & popular presenter at Port Adelaide. He has a background in teaching history and has offered a diverse range of topics to our group in the past such as travel experiences, D Day landings, WW1, The ‘real’ history of the American West, the Russian revolution and British pop music.

Marnie Phillips

Long term and popular member of Port Adelaide U3A. Marnie serves on the U3A, Port Adelaide committee.

 Elizabeth Caldicott

Elizabeth is a retired secondary school teacher of Geography, Geology and Environmental Science.

She as a Diploma of Teaching, a Post Graduate Diploma of Environmental Science, a BA, and a MA (Geography) at the University of Adelaide.

Pamela Rajkowski

Pamela is a research author specialising in the history, heritage and contribution of the Australian Cameleers (1860 – 1930).   Pamela regularly collaborates with Afghan Cameleer descendants across Australia.  Although her research is founded on a range of secondary sources (e.g. archives, newspapers), it is enriched by ongoing conversations with descendants.

Pamela’s work has been sourced by academics, museums and the media, both nationally and internationally.

Pamela is credited as being one of the first authors to research the history of the Afghan cameleers of Australia and uncovered previously unknown files of stolen generation Aboriginal children of Western Australia (Linden Girl) that remained active until the 1970s.

Her website:  http://www.pamelarajknowski.com/

Dr Tony Stimson

Tony holds a Ph.D in History.  He chairs the academic boards of two Adelaide-based tertiary institutions, chairs the South Australian Boer War Association Inc and is a member of the board of a leading Independent school in Adelaide.

Prof Kay Whitehead

Prof Whitehead is professor in the School of Education, Flinders University. Prof Whitehead has published many articles often with a focus on gender and on teachers in SA.

Philip Payton

His recent book gives a vivid account of the radical tradition in the Labor movement in South Australia, Philip Payton shows how the many thousands of people who emigrated from Cornwall to the newly-established colony in the nineteenth century brought their way of life with them. Overwhelmingly Methodist in religion, and united by their motto ‘One and All’, these Cornish migrants settled in the copper-mining districts of Burra, Kapunda and northern Yorke Peninsula.

Bev Chidgey

Long term and popular member of Port Adelaide U3A. Bev serves on the committee and is currently deputy chairperson U3A, Port Adelaide

Helen and Roger Bills

Helen and Roger are members of Adelaide U3A. They love travelling and have prepared excellent presentations of places they have visited. We have had them before, presenting the Galapagos Islands, Iceland, Bhutan and South America.

Prof Corey Bradshaw

Corey Bradshaw is the Sir Hubert Wilkins Chair of Climate Change in the School of Biological Sciences, University of Adelaide.

He has a broad range of research interests including population dynamics, extinction theory, palaeo-ecology, sustainability, invasion biology, community ecology, and climate change impacts & mitigation.

Lisa Arnold

Humanitarian programme manager with international NGO work experience in the occupied Palestinian territories, Lebanon, Eritrea, East Timor, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Aceh and Australia. She has a strong awareness of humanitarian issues, international aid delivery mechanisms, and of cultural differences. She has particular knowledge and experience in Middle Eastern politics, culture and society, including basic Arabic language skills.

Dr Don Hopgood 

 Don Hopgood worked as a secondary school teacher and university tutor before being elected to the South Australian Parliament in 1970. Don served in parliament for over twenty years, holding various ministerial portfolios including development and mines, education, environment, water, emergency services, and health. Don was Deputy Premier for six years between 1985 and 1992.

From 1997 to 1999 Don was the Moderator of the Uniting Church SA Synod. Recently Don has been teaching courses at the College for Seniors and the University of the Third Age, has been researching the history of jazz in South Australia and providing hospital chaplaincy service.

Valerie Sitters

Valerie Sitters has worked at the State Library of South Australia for many years and over the last 25 has spoken to many groups of all ages about the Library’s treasures and about Australian and Antarctic exploration.


In the lead up to 2002 and during that year she was involved in a range of activities relating to Encounter 2002 celebrating the voyages of Matthew Flinders and Nicolas Baudin.