Dr. Tomison was appointed as the Director of the Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC) – Australia's government knowledge centre on crime and criminal justice - in July 2009. He is internationally recognised as an expert in the field of child abuse, the prevention of child abuse and other family violence, and the development and operation of child protection and family support systems. An experienced public service executive, he has worked over the past two decades with a range of government, non-government organisations and advocacy groups focused on child protection and child abuse prevention in Australia and overseas.
Prior to his appointment with the AIC, he was Head of the Child Protection Program at the Menzies School of Health Research.
From 2004 to 2008 he held various senior executive positions within the Northern Territory (NT) Department of Health and Families, including as Director of the Northern Territory's Family and Children's Services, and as the Department's inaugural Principal Child Protection Adviser in 2004.
In 2006-07, Dr Tomison acted as the expert advisor (and Director of Policy and Research) for the 'Little Children are Sacred' NT Inquiry into the Protection of Aboriginal Children from Sexual Abuse. He is perhaps best known for his work as a senior researcher with the Australian Institute of Family Studies, managing the National Child Protection Clearinghouse. Under his leadership, the Clearinghouse became a centre for excellence with a national and international reputation in the field of child abuse prevention and child protection. He subsequently developed a number of other national research and information units for the Institute, notably the Australian Centre for the Study of Sexual Assault.
Dr Tomison has made significant academic contributions to scholarly and applied research in the areas of child protection and violence prevention, and is appointed as an Honorary Professor at the Australian Catholic University. He is a frequent presenter at conferences and has regularly run educational and training seminars for professionals and the wider community. Dr Tomison currently serves as a Board Member of the International Centre for the Prevention of Crime (Canada) and NAPCAN Australia, as well as being a member of the Advisory Board of the Institute of Child Protection Studies (Australian Catholic University), and the Criminal Justice Working Group of Australia’s Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.