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Board Members

Richard Hughes - Chair

Bachelor of Building (University of NSW). Company Directors Course (Australian Institute of Company Directors).

Director since 2014

Other Role: Principal, Catylis Properties Pty Ltd

Richard Hughes has over 40 years’ experience in property development, investment and construction in Australia, Europe and Asia. He has established and led property development and project management businesses in Sydney, Melbourne, London, Warsaw and Jakarta. Richard’s experience covers all property sectors, including commercial, industrial, business parks, residential, retail and mixed use. He has specific expertise in obtaining re-zoning approvals and master planning of sites for large mixed use developments. Richard is a Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Property Council of Australia.

Shirley Chowdhary - Deputy Chair

Company Directors Course (Australian Institute of Company Directors). Master of International Law (University of Sydney). Bachelor of Laws (University of Sydney). Masters of Arts (Applied Japanese for Business) (University of Sydney). Bachelor of Arts (Japanese, Psychology) (University of Sydney).

Director since 2016

Other Role: CEO, GO Foundation

Shirley Chowdhary has held a number of senior and executive roles as a banking and finance lawyer in Australian and US-listed companies and not-for-profit organisations in Asia, the United States and Australia. Shirley brings a strong sense of integrity, ethics and commitment and the courage to speak up and challenge prevailing thinking. She believes fiercely in the power of diversity and inclusion. As CEO of GO Foundation, Shirley collaborates with her teams and partners to empower Indigenous Australian youth to change their own lives. This is achieved through the provision of mentoring, leadership training, networks and support of students from kindergarten to employment.

Jonathon Rea

Master of Law in Dispute Resolution (University of New South Wales), Bachelor of Business (Charles Sturt University). Graduate Certificate in Social Impact (University of New South Wales - Graduate School of Management). Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Justice of the Peace (NSW).

Director since 2014

Other Role: Consultant, Non-Executive Director

With 25 years’ experience in banking and finance, principally with Westpac Banking Group, Jonathon has held numerous senior executive positions including Chief Manager, Credit Risk Review and Country Head for Taiwan. He has previously held positions in merchant banking, capital markets and treasury. Over the last 15 years' Jonathon has been a Consultant in risk management and mitigation strategies. He has also been a Non-Executive Director to various companies and a Board member for several non-government and not-for-profit organisations. Jonathon has extensive NGO experience including in community health, family and youth services, housing and financial and dependency counselling.

Christina Harlamb

Master of Education (Adult), (University of Technology), Bachelor of Social Science, (Macquarie University), Bachelor of Optometry, (University of NSW), Diploma of Management

Director since 2016

Other Role: CEO, Focus Care and Disability Services

Christina has a diverse background as a clinical optometrist, owning and managing a number of practices, followed by executive roles – leading programs in health and community services across business development, policy, strategic planning and communications.  She has also held positions in clinical workforce development and training in NSW Health, and aged care workforce development, leading the Aged Care Workforce Innovation Network (WIN) Program. As CEO of Focus Home Care and Disability Services, Christina leads an innovative new entrant in the aged care industry, applying her executive leadership, transformation and strategic skills in a rapidly growing and complex business environment.

Philip Knox

Advanced Management Program, University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School. Bachelor of Business, Accounting and Finance, (University of Technology, Sydney). 

Director since 2016

Other role: CFO of NBN Co

Philip Knox is a progressive executive leader, operational strategist, and trusted advisor with a record of sound financial guidance in complex settings that demand keen business acumen. He has experience in driving operational and financial efficiency and establishing core metrics that optimise team performance and capital position. Philip’s experience spans a number of industries including working with private equity and multi-national organisations in media, IT and healthcare. As CFO of NBN Co, he has oversight and accountability for the financial and operating functions with an extended team of over 600 professionals across finance, procurement and data analytics.

Nicole Rieveley

Company Directors Course (Australian Institute of Company Directors); Master of Business Administration – MBA (Monash Business School); Bachelor of Behavioural Sciences (Honours); Double Major Psychology (La Trobe University).

Director since 2018

Other Role: CEO Natural Therapy Pages (a subsidiary of hipages Group)

Nicole has more than 20 years executive experience in consumer marketing, digital, customer experience and human resources and a significant track record in business transformation in fast moving and complex environments. During Nicole’s career she has worked across multiple industries including technology, finance, telecommunications and tourism. Nicole has held executive positions in high growth, international technology businesses, new acquisitions and large scale Fortune 500 corporates, principally GE and Telstra. Nicole is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Frances-Anne Keeler

Company Directors Course (Australian Institute of Company Directors); Bachelor of Arts, Joint Honours Degree in Marketing and Hispanic Studies (University of Strathclyde, Glasgow)

Director since 2018

Other roles: Chair, San Churro; Chair, Australian Tourism Data Warehouse

Frances-Anne Keeler is a non-executive director, with over 25 years’ experience across multiple sectors including tourism and hospitality, business events, major events, international education and financial services. She has previously held senior executive roles across global markets and has been based in Australia, Europe and the USA. She is a former Deputy CEO of Tourism Australia, where she successfully developed strategies and led global teams and industry to grow the Australian visitor economy.  She is Chair of the Australian Tourism Data Warehouse – the national platform for digital tourism information on Australia – and Chocolateria San Churro, a unique Spanish chocolate cafe experience, with more than 50 successful stores throughout Australia. Frances-Anne is passionate about putting the customer at the center of business strategy and developing outstanding customer experiences.

Commissioner Leigh Johns OAM

Master of Laws (University of Melbourne); Bachelor of Laws (Monash University); Bachelor of Economics (Monash University)

Director since 2019

Other role: Commissioner, Fair Work Commission

Commissioner Johns has extensive experience in employment law, workplace relations, equal opportunity and anti-discrimination law, disciplinary proceedings and workplace mediation. He has also been involved in a range of not-for-profit organisations for more than 25 years across areas including the arts, youth, community/primary health and health promotion. For this outstanding service, and significant contribution to the industrial relations field, Commissioner Johns was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) in 2017. Three years earlier he was appointed to the Fair Work Commission, following a career as an experienced and highly skilled senior government executive.

Executive Leadership Team

Susannah Le Bron

Master of Business Administration (Charles Sturt University) – completing

Chief Executive Officer

Susannah Le Bron has more than 18 years of senior leadership experience including strategy development, operations and customer service delivery and innovation. Prior to joining YMCA NSW, Susannah was Executive Director Customer Service with Sydney Trains, Transport for NSW. She was responsible for the leadership and accountability of 2,431 frontline customer service representatives across 178 stations and the experiences of more than one million travellers each day. For almost 15 years she held senior managerial roles at QANTAS including introducing innovations in customer service, relationship management and program transformation. Susannah believes the customer should always be placed at the centre and she has a strong desire to improve the physical and mental wellbeing of communities, including its most vulnerable members.

Lisa Giacomelli

Bachelor, Laws (Macquarie University), Bachelor, Social Science (University of Western Sydney)

Chief Operating Officer

Lisa Giacomelli has more than 20 years’ experience in the human services sector. Before joining YMCA NSW in 2016, she held senior management roles in local government – managing strategy and operations in children’s, youth and community services and aquatics and recreation. Lisa has experience working in partnership with communities to plan and deliver both hard and soft infrastructure to support healthy living and positive social outcomes. Having commenced her career as a youth worker, Lisa is passionate about providing genuine opportunities for young people to explore their potential and shape their worlds.

Jenny Woodward

Bachelor of Business (University of Technology) Master of Business (Macquarie Graduate School of Management), Chartered Accountant and Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Chief Financial Officer

Jenny has more than 20 years’ experience in the finance arena holding various financial, commercial and leadership positions at blue chip companies. These span a number of industries including healthcare, fast moving consumer goods and construction. Jenny is passionate about driving growth and supporting business outcomes through proactive business partnering – developing strong commercial solutions. Jenny has a strong track record of achievement in developing and driving business strategy and process reengineering, through process review and redesign and leveraging technology solutions.

Louisa McKay

Graduate Diploma Social Science – Community Services (UWS); Associate Diploma Early Childhood – Children’s Services (TAFE); Diploma of Systemic Counselling Skills – Effective Group Leadership component; Cert IV Workplace Training and Assessment (FDC Peak Training)

Executive Leader, Community Services

Louisa McKay is passionate about social justice and improving the social wellbeing outcomes of communities and young people. She has vast experience working in NGOs, government departments and peak bodies in direct service delivery, program design and implementation, government relations, policy and advocacy, outcomes measurement, strategy development and senior leadership roles. Louisa has presented and consulted in Australia and internationally on Results Based Accountability (RBA) and developed a disciplined and relentless approach to quality improvement and social impact. Louisa is committed to developing and empowering teams, believing that the best results happen from a team who is continually striving to grow and improve.

Bree Godden

Bachelor of Communication – Journalism (Western Sydney University); Master of Teaching (University of Sydney)

Executive Leader, Brand & Engagement (job share)

Bree Godden has extensive experience in brand building, PR, crisis and change communications, stakeholder and government relations, strategic marketing and authentic employee engagement. She has managed large scale corporate strategies and communications projects across a variety of industries including healthcare (including managing the UK Swine Flu crisis), public relations (e.g. $2.3 billion sale of the Sydney desalination plant), not-for-profit, media and government. Bree believes that timely and accurate communications are critical to building internal and external advocates and ambassadors for an organisation. She values the input of people of all ages including young people to ensure their work is recognised and they are given a platform to have their voices heard.

Emma Whale

Master of International Relations, Global Politics (Macquarie University); Bachelor of Arts, English Studies (Macquarie University); Bachelor of Arts, Culture, Text and Discourse (Western Sydney University)

Executive Leader, Brand & Engagement (job share)

Emma Whale has more than two decades experience in communications and marketing, with journalism the foundation of her career. She has extensive experience in NSW Government across planning, growth and strategy portfolios – managing teams across these areas and in media and external communications. Emma has considerable crisis and change communications experience and is an accomplished organisational spokesperson. She also has extensive media relations, digital marketing, branding and publications management expertise. An accomplished writer and editor, Emma enjoys sharing her passion for speech writing and empowering her team members to embrace the latest, best practice trends.


Sarah Sammut

Bachelor, Commerce, Human Resource Management and Industrial Relations (UWS), Post Graduate Bachelor, Teaching Secondary (UWS)

Executive Leader, People and Culture

Sarah is an accomplished People and Culture Executive with 10+ years’ senior management experience across Customer Experience and People/HR strategy, operational business transformation, change and communications management and business improvement. She has a genuine care for building great high performance teams who feel supported and nurtured. Sarah has been nationally recognised at the Australian HR awards, having won Australian HR technology award, Australian L&D Strategy award and a Finalist as the HR director of the year amongst others. She also has demonstrated success in leading people to maximise commercial performance in multimillion-dollar global organisations through growth, acquisition, and divestment lifecycles whilst ensuring teams are highly engaged and well informed.

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