Ian graduated from the Victorian School of Forestry in 1969 and the University of Melbourne in 1973 with a BScFor (Hons).
After FCV field postings to the Yarram District (1970- 1971), working on the Strzelecki re-forestation program, and to the Niagaroon (Taggerty) District (mid 1973 - 1974) with responsibility for the alpine ash regeneration program, Ian transferrred to the Fisheries & Wildlife Division undertaking roles with wildlife reserves management, wildlife conservation policy and planning including representing F&W Div on several LCC land use study working groups.
Whilst with F&W Div, Ian gained study leave and completed a course work MSc at the University of California, Berkeley in 1980 majoring in wildlife and vegetation management and ecology.
With the creation of the Dept of Conservation, Forests & Lands, Ian was appointed as Ass't Regional Manager, Resource Conservation, firstly with Traralgon Region (later to become Central Gippsland Region) and then with Yarram Region. Responsibilities included biodiversity conservation, pest plant & animal management, soil conservation and salinity control, catchment management and fisheries management.After promotion to Regional Manager, Colac, another major Departmental reorganisation resulted in Ian undertaking various roles with biodiversity conservation, fisheries management, catchment management and water resources management across south west Victoria, including Departmental representative for several years on the Board of the Glenelg-Hopkins Catchment Management Authority. After retirement in 2012, Ian served another 4 year term as a Board Director with the GHCMA.