Introducing our team at the Eco House & Garden

Peter Rutherford
Senior Ecologist and Educator

Peter Rutherford has been the Senior Ecologist & Educator at Kimbriki’s Eco House and Garden for 20 years. Peter is a Social Ecologist, Horticulturist and Educator with an extensive knowledge of soils and microbes and the sciences of composting and worm farming. With an infectious passion for sustainable living, Peter inspires both adults and children to live more sustainably.

Peter has taught in schools, co-designed and presented the EPA Earthworks and the Waste Board’s Healthy Gardens courses and has authored many articles, books and videos. Peter has been both guest and presenter on ABC’s popular Gardening Australia as well as appearing on various gardening and lifestyle television programs promoting the benefits of composting and worm farming.

Rachel Kernaghan
Ecologist and Educator

Rachel Kernaghan is a keen educator and trained teacher who has been working and volunteering in environmental education for the last 10 years. She is a local Northern Beaches mum who has been teaching about ecology and sustainability, locally with OzGREEN, Auseco, Manly Vale Community Garden and local schools.

Over the last 10 years, Rachel has dedicated her teaching energy to students of all ages exploring how to grow their own food, compost their food waste and understand more about their relationship with their natural environment and the bigger sustainability picture. Rachel has also been educating members of the local community about the various ways to reduce the use of chemicals in homes including household chemicals, personal care products and pesticides/fertilisers in family food.

Rachel’s passion and energy for reducing waste and educating others about these issues, especially her work with local schools, allows us to expand our reach even further into the community.
Adam Tilley
Assistant Educator

Adam Tilley spent most of his late teens and 20s pursuing a career in journalism and media, but 3 years ago his passion for ecology and the environment was awoken after attending a local Permaculture course. Adam began volunteering at Kimbriki Resource Recovery Centre, devoting as much time as he could to maintaining the magnificent gardens that Peter and the team at Kimbriki had created, to educate and inspire the residents of the Northern Beaches Council, and beyond.

After almost 2 years, Adam was given the opportunity to join the Eco House and Garden team at Kimbriki. The knowledge he had gained while volunteering enabled him to further his desire to share what he had learned with others. Adam began working alongside Peter in the Kimbriki pilot school program where they worked closely with Terrey Hills and Mona Vale Public Schools to educate and ultimately inspire children to embrace the principles of Permaculture and sustainable living, through in-school composting and veggie garden projects.

Recently Adam has also been conducting tours of the Kimbriki site which gives him even more opportunity to share his passion for the environment and ecological living.

Tanya Leishman
Ecologist and Educator

Tanya Leishman is an educator with the Kimbriki Eco House and Garden.  With a degree in Land Management and a Primary Teaching degree she has been happily combining her science and education passions to work in schools and communities for over 25 years.  After working as a project officer in state government departments and NGO’s she then specialised in environmental education for children.  Tanya has worked at the Ku-ring-gai Wildflower Garden, Narrabeen Coastal Environmental Centre and has been a waste education officer at Northern Beaches Council.

In recent years she has worked closely with outdoor education specialists to develop the Seaforth Public School  Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program.  Tanya has been successful at applying for grants to improve school sustainability outcomes. She is committed to conservation issues and loves teaching in the outdoor space.  Tanya was the recipient of the Gould League AAEE Scholarship award in 2020 which enabled her to study Forest Therapy.  Tanya lives with her family on the Northern Beaches and goes camping as often as she can to appreciate nature.