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Family Violence Support

Executive Officer & Board of Governance

Elizabeth Jewson, Executive Officer

Elizabeth began in the role of Executive Officer in August 2014. She completed her masters in Exercise Rehabilitation in 2004 and since then has worked as an exercise physiologist, team leader, manager and senior manager in the community health, hospital and primary care partnership setting in the inner west of Melbourne. Elizabeth has published various journal articles and presented at a number of National conferences relating to chronic disease management.

Elizabeth brings to this role a thorough knowledge and expertise in multi sector and multi organisational partnerships and is humbled by the opportunity to work with a team of very dedicated staff and volunteers in the family violence sector in the Ballarat region.

Julie McMahon, President

Supporting and managing a diverse student service team within a State Government setting, Julie has experience in working with diversity and multi-disciplinary environments.  Julie has been a teacher, principal and regional executive and brings region-wide experience in Community Action Networks, Community Renewal Projects and improvement, strategic planning, review and management processes. 

Kate Hearn, Deputy President

As a psychologist and manager of a small practice, Kate is experienced in the public and private sectors in working with people who have experienced significant trauma and family violence.  Kate is skilled in conflict resolution and is committed to working with people to improve health and well-being as well as having a focus on policy making and strategic planning.

Wendy Baker, Secretary and Publicity

As a recent Senior Executive with the Department of Education, Wendy has extensive experience and a
strong interest in developing leadership and improving social justice.  Throughout her career she has been
 a teacher, school principal and curriculum consultant.  She has led strategic and project planning, provided
leadership to a diverse workforce and worked tirelessly to reduce disadvantage for children and their families.

Di Cassidy, Treasurer

Di joined the board in Nov 2015. A CPA with extensive experience in both financial and management accounting across a number of different industries as well as post grad qualifications in HR and Corporate Governance, Di considers it both an honour and privilege to be part of the team at WRISC.


Jodie Kennedy, Ordinary Board Member

Jodie joined the board of WRISC in 2013 after being inspired to do something to assist in the area of prevention of violence against women and children, after completing Leadership Ballarat. Jodie moved to Creswick from Queensland (yes, noticing a considerable weather difference!) after successfully obtaining a position with the City of Ballarat.

Jodie enjoys now being much closer in proximity to her family - including two nieces and a nephew.


Emma Leehane, Ordinary Board Member

Hi everyone, I'm Emma Leehane.  I am a Yorta Yorta woman of mixed decent. A  Ballarat girl born and bred. My field's expertise is education and I have been teaching in various capacities for the past 16 years. I have taught around Australia as a classroom teacher and in two roles as an Indigenous Education Officer. I am currently working for Ballarat Health Services in the role of Aboriginal Care Co-ordinator, looking to improve the pathways for ATSI people in the health system and improve culturally safe and effective clinical care.  I am passionate about our people and the need for us to unite and stand strong to support each other across the nation.

Laura Springer, Ordinary Board Member

Motherhood is Laura's current focus, but she still finds time to be part of the WRISC Board as she is passionate about women's issues, community development and education. Laura's background in community services (AOD, youth work, Legal & Disability) and small business means she brings a lot of skills and experience to the board of governance at WRISC. Laura really wanted to do something with and for the community and really identified with WRISC's values and vision. She believes WRISC is such an important service for the region and paramount for the betterment of women and children and society.  She loves to spend time with family and friends and enjoys traveling around Australia.
Joanne Gilbert, Ordinary Board Member                 

Joanne joined the Board in 2016. With a Bachelor of Criminology and Justice she currently is the Children's Court Youth Diversion Coordinator in Ballarat. Working with young first time offenders to divert them away from the Criminal Justice System by addressing their underlying needs that lead to offending behaviour. Joanne has a strong interest for social justice  and is also a member of Local Government.                                                                                                                                                                               
Meeta Narsi, Ordinary Board Member

For many years, Meeta has been involved in the Ballarat community, and was a Multicultural Ambassador for the City of Ballarat, where she currently maintains her role as the Cultural Diversity Advisor. She also deals with state-level multicultural affairs as a member of the Regional Advisory Council. Meeta joined the WRISC board in 2016 to share her knowledge and experience in promoting inclusion, harmony and diversity in meeting the needs of woman from culturally diverse backgrounds.

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(03) 5333 3666
Wrisc Family Violence Support