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Board of Governance

The Board of Governance:


Jane Evans
  • Qualifications: B.A., LL.B (Hons), AICD.
  • Experience: Fifteen plus years’ experience as a legal practitioner in Australia and overseas; former partner of Mallesons Stephen Jaques (now King & Wood Mallesons), practising in the area of mergers and acquisitions; extensive
    experience in governance law and practice including on other Boards in the not-for-profit sector. Jane has a son on the autism spectrum.
  • Special Responsibilities: Board Chair.
  • Committee Roles: Chair of Governance Committee; member of Finance, Audit and Risk Committee, member of Policy Committee, and member of Research, Monitoring and Evaluation Committee.

Shannon Eeles
Deputy Chair
  • Qualifications: B NursSc (Hons).
  • Experience: Shannon has worked with children with ASD and their families for over 10 years. She is the Founder and Director of Autism Partnerships and is co-founder of the IDEA Program and the Little Learners Autism Program. Shannon’s special area’s of interest include education and public policy.
  • Special responsibilities: Deputy Board Chair.
  • Committee Roles: Chair of Policy Committee.
Janine Hoey
  • Qualifications: Bachelor of Commerce, FAICD.
  • Experience: Janine has 25 years experience as a senior executive in finance, commercial, operations, governance, strategy, risk, health, safety and sustainability in energy and aviation companies. Currently a consultant in the energy industry and has held Non Executive Director roles for private and listed companies, including an Audit Committee Chair of an ASX listed company.
  • Committee Roles: Chair of Finance, Audit and Risk Committee; member of Governance Committee.

Professor Nicole Rinehart
  • QualificationsPhD, Professor, Clinical Psychology, Deakin University, Consultant Clinical Psychologist,Melbourne Children’s Clinic, Honorary Research Fellow, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, and Adjunct Professor,
    Clinical Psychology at Monash University.
  • Experience: Published over 120 papers and book chapters on the topic of developmental disorders and received more than $6 million in research funding over the last 10 years. Nicole has recently established a National partnership with the AFL to conduct the ‘biggest game changer for children with disability’ in Australia in sports to date: the establishment of the web-site.  Together with her team, she will make a contribution to the AFL Disability Action plan to ensure that all children with disability are ‘playing on an even’ ground.
  • Committee Roles: Member of Research, Monitoring and Evaluation Committee.

Rachel McNamara
  • Qualifications: B.Sci., M. Nutrition & Dietetics.
  • Experience: A blogger on autism and social justice issues at, worked as an Accredited Practising Dietitian, in administration roles, a regular volunteer in primary school. With a special interest in autism, Rachel has undertaken extensive research to understand both scientific and personal perspectives of autism. Rachel is an autistic woman and has two autistic sons.
  • Committee Roles: Member of Governance Committee.

Ryan Brown
  • Qualifications: Bachelor of Arts., GAICD.
  • ExperienceRyan has been working in the not-for profit sector for 10 years, developing sustainable fundraising and communication programs. Ryan is currently the Director of Engagement, Foundation and Corporate Communications at Northern Health and has held senior appointments at the Australian Red Cross and CARE Australia. He was an elected Councillor in 2015 at the City of Monash, is currently an Associate at AskRight, and has held board positions at a number of community based organisations. Ryan is currently a member of the Board Management at Northern Link.
  • Committee Roles: Member of Governance Committee.

Professor Sandra Jones
  • Qualifications: PhD (social marketing) and Masters qualifications in Assessment and Evaluation, Public Health, and Business Administration.
  • Experience: experienced researcher with a broad profile of ASD related research; founding Director for the Centre for Health and Social Research at ACU and an Australian Research Council Future Fellow; Director (founder and full-time
    leader) of a large university research centre for 15 years; five years’ experience as a director of the Cram Foundation in NSW (nonprofit organisation supporting people with severe disabilities). Sandra has two adult sons on the autism spectrum.
  • Committee Roles: Chair of Research, Monitoring and Evaluation Committee; member of Policy Committee.
Michel Mamet
  • Qualifications: B.Com (Finance and Accounting, Hons)
  • Experience: Eighteen years’ experience as an investment banker in Australia and the US; currently Managing Director of Flagstaff Partners, practising in the area of mergers and acquisitions and corporate finance; experience in other not-for-profit including currently as Chair of University of Queensland Alumni Council in Victoria. Michel has a son on the autism spectrum.
  • Committee Roles:  member of Finance, Audit and Risk Committee
 Katherine Pye
  • Qualifications: Master of Applied Science (Speech Pathology); Bachelor of Arts (Psychology, Linguistics); Certified Early Start Denver Model Therapist
  • Experience: 15 years’ experience as a paediatric speech pathologist in Australia and the UK, focussing on autism assessment and intervention; recently Clinical Education Coordinator in La Trobe University’s Master of Speech Pathology; currently Senior Coordinator of the Victorian Autism Specific Early Learning & Care Centre (ASELCC), also at La Trobe University. This centre provides intensive intervention for young children on the spectrum, and has several randomised, controlled trials under way to inform practice and policy, and to establish an evidence base for socially inclusive approaches to early intervention.
  • Committee Roles: member of Policy Committee