Carmel Dunne has enjoyed a long association with Lourdes Hill College, firstly as a student, then as a staff member and more recently, as a member of the College’s governing body. As an educator and woman of faith, she has enriched the lives of generations of the extended Catholic education community nationwide.

Carmel was born in Brisbane in 1945 and grew up in the Grange as the eldest of three children. She attended the Good Samaritan School, St Columba’s from Prep to Year 10, before enrolling at Lourdes Hill College in 1962. Carmel had always looked upon Lourdes Hill as a “shining light”, and was delighted, as a Year 11 student, to finally become a Lourdanian.

After leaving school, Carmel spent a year at teachers’ college before entering the Order of the Sisters of the Good Samaritan. She was a novice at Pennant Hills from 1965-67, and recalls that the experience taught her “more than you could ever imagine.”

Carmel completed her teaching qualifications at St Scholastica’s in Sydney before being appointed as a teacher at St Margaret Mary’s School in Townsville. She then worked at St Patrick’s Campbelltown and St Clare’s ACT. She loved all her teaching involvement and, despite leaving the Order in 1976, her connectedness to the Good Sams would remain with her for life.

Carmel served as a much loved member of staff at Lourdes Hill College from 1977-79, as an English and Religious Education teacher and, later, as Senior Mistress - part of the Administration team and responsible for pastoral care of students and daily management of the College.

After leaving Lourdes Hill, Carmel’s career continued to flourish through teaching and leadership positions at St Edmund’s College in ACT and Frawley College Scarborough. These both enriched her understanding and love for education.  

In 1991, Carmel was appointed as Principal at Loreto College Coorparoo, a role that she adored and remained in for 20 years. Her inimitable intuition, kindness and great wisdom endeared her to the Loreto community and enabled it to flourish under her leadership.

Throughout her career, Carmel remained a keen scholar, adding a Bachelor of Arts, Graduate Diploma in Religious Education and Master of Arts Theological Studies to her CV, all whilst working full time.

Carmel retired at the end of 2010, but continues to make significant contributions to Australian Catholic education through her involvement in various boards, committees and reflection days. She has been a member of the Lourdes Hill College governing body since the mid-1990s. Her commitment to Good Samaritan Education is strong and seen by her as a privilege.

More Stellar Lourdanians

Faye McLeod (Guivarra) 1956 - 1957

Faye McLeod (Guivarra) is one of our most notable past pupils, and has fond memories of her time as a boarder at Lourdes Hill College in the 1950s. From humble beginnings, she was born the daughter of a sugar cane farmer from Far North Queensland but, in later years, would become an internationally-renowned media queen.
Faye boasts an extensive CV as a musical performer, TV presenter and actress, but is best known as a radio star from Belfast where, over the years, she was the ‘voice’ of a number of programs, including music shows, talkback and dating programs.
In 2012, she was the first woman in Ireland to be inducted into its Media Hall of Fame and was recently awarded an MBE for her outstanding service to broadcasting and the community.
In the entertainment world, she is known as Candy Devine. To her celebrity chef son, Alastair, and his three brothers she is known as Mum. To her granddaughters, past pupil, Bailie, and current student, Sasha, she is known as Granny. To the rest of us, she is known as Mrs Faye McLeod.
Margaret Vider 1956 - 1959

Margaret Vider is a committed Catholic who is an inspiration to people across a wide spectrum of the community. She has a long and distinguished career in Catholic health services where her professionalism, exemplary character and dedication to the sick are held in high esteem.
Margaret was the Director of Nursing for 12 years at Holy Spirit Hospital in Brisbane and Director of Mission for 10 years before retiring in December 2006. She served on the McAuley College Council, the forerunner to the current ACU Brisbane campus. Since 2007 she has chaired the Centacare Council. She is also a member of the Archdiocesan Financial Council (since 2011) and the Resource Development Forum of the Archdiocese of Brisbane. Margaret is serving in her second term as ACU Senator and is a fellow of the Royal College of Nursing Australia. In 2005, Ms Vider was appointed as Deputy Commissioner to the Bundaberg Health Commission of Inquiry.
Margaret teaches Religious Education in a Brisbane suburban State School where her dedication to the role attracts much admiration. Margaret is concerned about justice issues such as the plight of the homeless and other disadvantaged groups who tend to be voiceless in the community.
Snapshot of LHC: 1956-1965

In 1956 a new school uniform was introduced which included a grey tunic, white blouse and green tie. On 12 December 1960 a fire broke out in the main building and destroyed the original “heart” of Lourdes Hill. Under the watchful eye of the principal, Sr Laureae, a new building program was begun which transformed the site into a modern educational institution.
The Sisters of the Good Samaritan | Good Samaritan Education | The Archdiocese of Brisbane
Queensland Catholic Education Commission | The Parent & Friends Association
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