Our ‘Meet the Team’ Q&A series delves into the heart of what makes Informit, Informit: our amazing team. This month, we’re getting to know our Production Information Systems Manager, Leanne Whitby, who celebrates 20 years with Informit in 2024!


I joined Informit in 1994, I find it hard to believe but I have moved through about five roles in that time and the work has always been very interesting. Laki Sideris, Donna Downey and I are the longest serving Informit staff members. I joined back in the days when Informit compiled index databases onto CD-ROMs and have experienced every evolution since, from linking articles to the index record, creating metadadata records to accessing news stories (TVNews) and designing databases for products and services. It has been a very interesting journey and I have worked in many roles, increasingly technical, over that time. These roles have encompassed information management, editorial and technical knowledge, all areas that I still use in my current role as Production Information Systems Manager.

Tell us a bit about yourself!

I live in Melbourne. I’m interested in many things but the thing I love most is music, all kinds of music, from ancient choral singing to the many strands of contemporary music.

What does a day in the life of a Production Information Systems Manager entail?

Mostly specific project work (which covers a wide range of areas) and quality assurance testing. It has been very intense in the last year as Informit has transitioned to new systems that do the back-end work that deliver the content to Informit customers on the Literatum platform. Lately, I’ve been mainly working on data quality testing of the migration of all our metadata databases to a new system.

What did you study and where?

I started out as an arts student, getting my BA (majors in Writing and Literature with a minor in Philosophy). I followed this up with a Graduate Diploma in Information Services and then a Graduate Diploma in Editing and Publishing, both at RMIT. I’ve also done post graduate studies in Information Technology at RMIT.

Some fun facts about me:

I was a volunteer extra (as one of the sea of humanity) in the Opera Australia production of the Ring Cycle (2013). It gave me a chance to see how an opera production is created, hear great singers and musicians up-close and work with choreographers. I’m also learning the ukelele at the moment for fun (my main instrument is the guitar).

Do you have any hidden talents?

I’m a musician, songwriter and writer. I guess they are hidden in that I don’t earn a salary from these things as I learned a long time ago that it is hard to make a living in the arts. But I’ve never regretted the direction I went in as I love the area I work in.

What was the first musical gig you ever attended?

I actually can’t remember, but stand-out concerts include seeing Jeff Buckley, Stevie Wonder, Prince (doing a solo concert on piano), Diamanda Galas, Blur, The Tiger Lillies and The Manhattan Transfer. Also, the classical violinist Maxim Vengerov, classical pianist András Schiff and jazz musicians Wynton Marsarlis, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock and Wayne Shorter.

What else do you love to do?

I love to travel and read. I particularly love visiting Greece and Spain. I never get tired of visiting ancient Greek ruins and museums, but it is also great to visit special and beautiful places in the natural world.

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