Meet the directors


A born bibliophile

I’ve always loved books and stories. I simply couldn’t get enough of them as a kid. There’s the book itself – the feel, look and even the smell of it (you’re with me on this, right?) – and then there’s the story, it’s power to educate, entertain and transport you, to spark your imagination, expand and change you. Imagine discovering that potential is at your disposal as an author!

I was six when I wrote, illustrated and self-published my first book ‘The Little Red and Green Car’. My interest in writing and using words to communicate, inform, influence, empathise and encourage grew from there. Naturally, it influenced my study and career choices.

Honing and teaching the science and art of communication

Following 30 incredibly satisfying years with the Victorian Education Department, 24 as a passionate teacher of English and Indonesian and six as an educational administrator, it was time to put my communication and writing skills to work in a new context for a new purpose.

In my element

With the launch of Chapter Three in 2015, I’ve been providing the end-to-end solution for anyone who needs a relational creative thinker, strategist and wordsmith to capture and tell their story in a way that works for them and their audiences.

Your life is your story. Write well. Edit often.

Susan Stratham

Live the story you want to tell


Back in the day

I was a conscientious student and loved learning but didn’t really thrive academically until late in my tertiary studies when, with the right mentoring, I found my niche: teaching.

As a humanities teacher, I felt energised and fulfilled exploring the world and our place in it with secondary students. Geography, History, Politics, Legal Studies, Environmental Studies – I taught it all. And loved it. Leadership opportunities came simultaneously, so I took them. First in curriculum development, then in student wellbeing. These challenging roles rounded out my knowledge and skill set on the way to the principal class.

Transforming schools

It was at the coal face of three secondary colleges, over the course of a decade that I learned what it takes to lead and create high performing education communities, bringing leadership teams and stakeholders along with me – all for the benefit of students. As a principal, thought leader and school transformer, implementing innovation and managing change processes was core work. It was often gruelling but always rewarding.

Ongoing learning underpinned it all. I read profusely and widely, visited education jurisdictions internationally to ensure we were delivering best practice, and studied formally adding a Bachelor of Theology, a Harvard Summer School Intensive and a Master of Education to my qualifications along the way.

Having a wider impact

In late 2008, I decided it was time to make a broader contribution to the Victorian education system, particularly to teacher development, through the bureaucracy. Following an Assistant Regional Director role, I had the opportunity to establish the Bastow Institute of Educational Leadership in North Melbourne. As the inaugural Director I worked with the team that brought a world class teacher and principal development institute to the profession. Leading the systematic change that positively impacted over 12,000 education leaders during my tenure was another career highlight.

Roles within the Department of Education and Training as an Executive Director and Deputy Secretary, Regional Services Group followed, giving me the responsibility of leading improvement in 1540 government schools. At the highest level of influence, it was a privilege to deliver the system reforms, policies, school improvement strategies and pedagogical resources that saw unprecedented gains. This was my legacy to Victorian children in government early childhood settings, primary and secondary schools.

Next is now!

In March 2019, 33 years since I first stepped foot in a classroom, I made an exciting career change, joining Robyn at Chapter Three. Consequently, we have a whole new suite of services to offer clients looking to discover, express and live the stories they want to tell.

The Chapter Three Story

Since teaching in portables opposite each other for a couple of years in the late 80’s at what was then Wantirna High School, we dreamt of working together again.

Chapter Three’s finally given us that opportunity.

We’re tremendously excited to be bringing the sum of our extensive experience, creative energy and complementary skills to the marketplace.

For your educational consultant, keynote speaking, coaching, leadership development, communications and writing needs Chapter Three’s got you covered.