Meet our team

Backed by strong and innovative leaders, we bring together the best and brightest educators who are passionate advocates for an all girls’ education.

College Executive

Vanessa Browning

Principal
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Ruth Massie

Deputy Principal Students/Head of Senior School
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Natalie Paelchen

Deputy Principal Staff/Director of Academics and Professional Practice
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Natalie Guthrie

Director of Finance and Operations
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Georgy Jureidini

Head of Middle School
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Katharyn Cullen

Head of Junior School
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Meaghan Matthews

Director of People and Culture
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Sally Penn

Director of Enrolments and Community Relations
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Holly Eyres

Director of Marketing and Communications
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Vanessa Browning

Principal

Passionate about the education of girls, Vanessa is an accomplished leader who exemplifies a strong role model for women. Beginning her career as a primary educator, Vanessa has held a range of positions in the areas of curriculum and pastoral care, including Curriculum Coordinator, Deputy Head of Junior and Head of Junior School.

She has worked across a number of independent single-sex and co-educational schools including Geelong Grammar School, Matthew Flinders Anglican College, The Scots College, Sydney and St Catherine’s, Sydney as well as experience internationally.

Vanessa believes teachers are a school’s greatest asset and she prioritises teacher development to enhance and strengthen student connection, engagement and ultimately student progress.

As well as being a strong advocate for the education and equality of girls, Vanessa believes in the value of a balanced education which equips girls with the character, intellect and outlook to become independent and responsible women who can positively enrich society, whilst working alongside others in an ever-changing multicultural world.

Vanessa strongly encourages each girl to strive for personal excellence and discover and develop their own talents, whilst valuing the talent of others.

Vanessa holds a Bachelor of Education, Graduate Certificate in Gifted Education and Masters of Leadership.

Ruth Massie

Deputy Principal Students/Head of Senior School

Ruth Massie graduated with Honours in Computers in Education, a postgraduate degree from Monash University after completing her Bachelor of Arts and Diploma of Education at the University of Adelaide. She has been a member of the Seymour College staff since 1996.

Ruth has had many years experience as Head of English Faculty and Stewart Clan Guardian before taking on the Director of Studies role, Head of Senior School and occasional times as Acting Deputy Principal.

Ruth is passionate about preparing young women with the positive attributes of strength, optimism, and justice, equipped to handle life’s challenges and to successfully transition to life beyond school.

Natalie Paelchen

Deputy Principal Staff/Director of Academics and Professional Practice

Natalie is a passionate leader of teaching and learning with many years of experience in leading curriculum and innovative practice across a range of educational settings in South Australia.

At Seymour, she has been instrumental in developing the Senior School Independence model as the Dean of Teaching and Learning (Senior School) which has fostered a tailored and flexible educational experience for every girl.

Natalie holds a Bachelor of Arts with specialisations in Drama and Classical Studies from Adelaide University, a Bachelor of Teaching and a Master of Education from Flinders University. Her Master of Education was in Studies of Asia with a focus on the literature and societies of China, Japan and Indonesia.

She is passionate about supporting staff deliver excellence in their classrooms. Her experience in leading staff professional development and teacher coaching programs is fundamental to her belief that developing the environment for great teaching is at the heart of delivering engaging and innovative learning experiences for all students.

Natalie Guthrie

Director of Finance and Operations

An Old Collegian (Hollidge, ’95), a member of staff and most recently a Seymour parent, Natalie Guthrie is our Director of Finance and Operations, who has proudly been a part of the Seymour community for almost 40 years.

A Bachelor of Commerce graduate from the University of Adelaide and a registered Chartered Accountant, Natalie has a wealth of experience in financial and business management, acquired across a range of industries including agriculture, insurance, and not-for-profit entities. She manages the College’s finances, buildings, and facilities, as well as risk and governance functions.

Passionate about collaborating with other staff and the Seymour community to realise the future vision of the College, Natalie holds the traditions of Seymour College close to her heart.

Georgy Jureidini

Head of Middle School

Georgy Jureidini holds a Bachelor of Laws from the ANU and a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from Flinders and Adelaide University. She is a Seymour Old Collegian (Malycha, ’93), the parent of a recently graduated Seymour girl and has worked at Seymour since 2014. Georgy treasures the traditions of Seymour while honouring its century long commitment to innovation.

Georgy has taught across the Humanities from Year 6 to Year 12, from the Australian Curriculum, SACE and the IB and has held various curriculum leadership roles, including Head of Humanities, Head of GEM and Dean of Academic Administration. She also led Positive Psychology at Seymour and maintains an abiding interest in student wellbeing and pastoral programs. She was a lawyer before starting her second career in education.

Georgy believes in educating the whole girl: body, mind and spirit. Georgy wants every student at Seymour to find her own path, using her unique passions and talents to do so and guided along the way by our dedicated Seymour staff.

Katharyn Cullen

Head of Junior School

Katharyn has enthusiastically led the delivery of academic excellence and rigour across the Junior School since 2019. Her high energy factor and vision for results have been key in the creation of the innovative Junior School Model which has improved teaching standards, enhanced student engagement and lifted educational outcomes.

Katharyn regularly engages as a literacy education consultant, leading and facilitating professional development across leading independent schools in Australia. She is a regular conference speaker for the Australian Association for the Teaching of English and was a Keynote speaker at the National THRASS Conference in 2019. Katharyn has a First-Class Honours Degree from The University of Sydney and is currently researching for her PhD in the area of language and linguistics. Her work is frequently published in The Educator.

Katharyn received an Excellence in Teaching from the Teachers’ Guild of New South Wales in 2016, as well as a Citation of Excellence and NSW World Teacher’s Day Recognition Award in 2017. Katharyn was named on the 2020 Educator Hotlist as an influencer who is reinventing the educational landscape in Australia.

Katharyn shares a love and commitment to the growth and progression of each child, actioned through the continual learning and improvement of each teacher in her team.

Meaghan Matthews

Director of People and Culture

Meaghan brings to Seymour College over 20 years generalist experience in the Human Resources industry. She has demonstrated success in helping businesses maximise the talent within their organisations which is a direct result of her drive to create exceptional employee experiences to enable people to reach their highest potential.

Having worked for many years in People and Culture management roles across the Defence and Professional Services sectors, Meaghan has a proven ability in delivering strategic and efficient solutions. She enjoys providing practical advice on all aspects of the employment lifecycle, especially change management and developing high performing teams.

Sally Penn

Director of Enrolments and Community Relations

Sally Penn is the Director of Enrolments and Community Relations and, as an Old Collegian (Marzola, ’86) and current parent, is passionate about Seymour College. As a member of the College Executive, Sally is responsible for enrolments, community relations and fundraising.

Sally works with new families to ensure they have their questions answered and that they feel a part of the College from the moment they walk through the gates. Sally also manages the scholarship program and International student recruitment. It is also through Sally’s work in Community Relations that the connection with the College for current families and Old Collegians becomes stronger and that the College’s philanthropic program prospers.

Holly Eyres

Director of Marketing and Communications

Holly has been a member of staff at Seymour since 2018. Her marketing and communications career, spanning more than 25 years has seen her develop campaigns for many global and national brands including American Express, Mitsubishi, Curtin University, University of South Australia, Repromed and ResourceCo.

As an Old Collegian (Winnall, ’91), and a current Seymour parent, Holly is particularly passionate about the Seymour College brand and its vision to inspire young women of strength, optimism and justice, confident for the future. Her aspirations and passion for the Seymour brand, coupled with her strategic, customer-focused perspective ensure a very considered approach to the College’s marketing and communications. She works closely with staff to bring the College’s vision to life as well as celebrating the achievements and talents within the College community, across a variety of platforms.

Holly holds a Bachelor of Management (Major in Marketing) from the University of South Australia.