KeyNote Speakers

DES Provider TBA


Terry Agnew

Business Council of Cooperatives and Mutuals, Curtin Business School Advisory Council, and Edge Employment Solutions

Terry Agnew is an experienced director, chair and CEO with a strong track record and involvement with successful and growing organisations. The strategic differentiation and sustainable success of these organisations is built on a foundation of brand, culture, safety and innovation.
He was the Group CEO of RAC in Western Australia for 20 years until March, 2019. RAC started as a motoring club in 1905 and now also provides a range of diverse services to over 1 million Western Australians in the areas of motoring, insurance, finance, travel and tourism, retirement and home services. RAC also remains a strong advocate for its members on key issues such as road safety, mobility, accessibility, infrastructure and environmental sustainability.
Terry is the current Chair of the Business Council of Cooperatives and Mutuals, Curtin Business School Advisory Council and Edge Employment Solutions (a disability employment service). He is also a Director of RAA Insurance and MDA National Insurance (both subsidiaries of mutual organisations). He was appointed to the Curtin University Council in 2019.
Terry is a member of two global entities; Chairing the FIA University Board and is a member of the Board of the Global Mobility Alliance.
Terry’s experience includes a range of executive and board roles with mutual and member organisations, private and public companies, joint ventures, government, and educational organisations. His industry experience includes insurance and financial services, education, care and disability, tourism and sport.
Terry is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management, Senior Fellow of the Financial Services Institute of Australia (Finsia) and Member of the Australian Institute of Engineers.
He has previously been National President of the Australian Institute of Management (AIM), State President of the Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA), Director of the West Coast Eagles and Director of the Insurance Commission of Western Australia. He was a Founding Member of CEO’s for Gender Equity

Disability inclusion in the cooperatives and mutuals sector in Australia

Natalie Bekis

General Manager, Strategic Partnerships and Engagement

Over a decade of experience working across various state and national personal injury compensation systems, including with one of Australia’s largest self-insured employers and more recently within the e-Health sector, Natalie Bekis has lead the design and implementation of a range of strategic projects and health and disability policy changes to improve outcomes for injured workers nationally.
Natalie commenced with Comcare in 2017 and is General Manager of the new Strategic Partnerships and Engagement (SP&E) Group. The SP&E Group is embarking on a series of initiatives to drive collaboration and innovation with a strong focus on education and engagement.
Natalie’s experience across clinical, operational and executive roles has enabled her to build deep insights and a broad network of relationships and partnerships across government, industry and medical associations within the Health and Disability sectors. This experience is further underpinned by a Bachelor of Nursing and a Master of Business Management


David Best

Disability Employment Australia
Senior Policy Officer

David has worked in a number of Commonwealth departments that deliver or contract human services. He worked as an Employment Case Manager in the Commonwealth Employment Service in the 1990s, a Youth Officer in the Department of Education, Training and Youth Affairs, a Contract Manager in the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations, and more recently as a Policy and Program Adviser in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet Indigenous Affairs Group. David’s experience includes being a contract manager for the previous DEN program. David has a strong interest in the improvement of both economic and social outcome for long term unemployed, Indigenous Australians and people with disabilities.

In his spare time, David is also an avid runner and regularly competes in races. He is also a part time tennis official who has regularly worked at the Australian Open.

David has a Bachelor of Arts in History, Geography and Government, a Graduate Certificate in Case Management and Client Services and a Diploma in Government – Contract Management.

Performance framework in the new DES

Selvina Bustelo

Department of Social Services (DSS)
DES Delivery Lead


David Coles

Disability Employment Australia

David is currently Operation Manager for EPIC Assist and has been a senior manager in disability employment for over ten years. David is based on the Gold Coast, Queensland. He has previously held management positions in the sector with Barkuma, Job Prospects and Employment Plus. David has been a Director of Disability Employment Australia for five years. He has also represented the DES sector in South Australia as Chair of Disability Employment SA (DESA), a position he held for four years. In addition to his extensive DES experience, David also worked in Melbourne with EPIC, developing Employment Supports in the NDIS environment.

David came to employment services from a long management career in the wine industry where he explored service, sales and supply chain logistics. Outside of the disability employment sector, David had served for four years in a technical and governance capacity on the Triathlon Australia Board.

Address from Chair

Luke Condon

Deloitte Access Economics

Luke works with government clients to design and improve investments in programs and services, so they maximise benefit to the community. To do this, he uses the tools of program evaluation and economic analysis. His main clients are public sector agencies responsible for social service delivery including health and human services and justice. This has included policy and evaluation projects relating to people with a disability and disability services, such as:
• A Job Well Done stakeholder consultation to refresh work experience resources for students with a disability for the Victorian Department of Education and Training
• NDIS justice readiness project for the Department of Justice and Regulation Victoria to develop a new model for disability justice services in Victoria
• Evaluation of support for deaf and hard of hearing VET learners for the Victorian Department of Education and Training
• Disability employment research for the Fair Work Ombudsman
• Cost benefit analysis and literature review of the First Voice early intervention model for deaf children for First Voice.

Luke joined Deloitte in 2013 from a niche consulting firm and prior to that originally commenced his career in the public sector.

Why the future of work is human
Disability workforce participation meets the future of work

Gerry Coyle

Assistant Director Research and Engagement

Gerry has 25 years’ research experience in both public and private sectors organisations in Australia and Europe. He has extensive leadership experience of both large scale strategic and ad-hoc research projects
in the fields of applied research, social research and evaluation. Currently Gerry is working at Comcare within the Strategic Partnerships and Engagement Group on a range of research projects in areas including: guiding and
supporting mental health and wellbeing of employees; fostering work participation and recovery; and how the workplace could be adapted to accommodate future ways of working.

The attitudes, behaviours and intention of Australian employers, towards recruiting, supporting and accommodating people experiencing ill health or disability

Jenny Crosbie

Swinburne University
PhD Student

Jenny has over 30 years experience working with people with disabilities in a variety of roles including 10 years in disability employment and transition from school programs. She is currently a PhD student at Deakin University studying the experience of young people with intellectual disability in relation to economic participation.

Building an evidence base: Three research studies to improve how we work (3 x 30 min sessions)
The emerging adulthood period: What is it and how does it impact on the economic participation of young people with intellectual disability?

Vanessa Davies

Compass Group Australia
National General Manager Diversity & Inclusion

Vanessa is currently employed as the National General Manager of Diversity & Inclusion for Compass Group. Vanessa is an Aboriginal woman who has traditional connections to both Wongi and Nyungar peoples in Western Australia. She has had comprehensive experience working at senior levels in private sector, government, justice, diversity and inclusion, employment, training and education, health, community and Indigenous relations. Her employment history has involved working with various companies, organisations, governments and community groups in WA and throughout Australia. This includes extensive experience managing multi-million-dollar budgets, state-wide and national operations, programs/services and numerous staff. She is focused on developing and implementing objectives and monitoring performance targets to achieve organisational objectives and strategies.

She began her career as a qualified Secondary Teacher, and in 2000 Vanessa completed a Masters Degree in Management and Leadership, Curtin University, Graduate School of Business. In 2018, Vanessa completed the Australian Institute of Company Directors Course. This GAICD professional qualification complements her Board and senior executive experience.

The motivated and committed employer (panel session)

Anne-Louise Dawes

National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA)
Branch Manager, Participant Employment Taskforce

Anne-Louise Dawes is a spirited and dedicated Branch Manager responsible for the NDIS Participant Employment Taskforce. An experienced pinch-hitter for the Commonwealth, Anne-Louise is practised at working with different sectors and across the tiers of government to deliver change. Anne-Louise is a passionate advocate for inclusivity at work and in communities and has worked for the last few years designing grants and implementing measures to build social cohesion in communities.


Emma Dawson

Per Capita
Executive Director

Emma Dawson is the Executive Director of Per Capita. Formerly, she was a senior advisor on Digital Inclusion at Telstra, Executive Director of the Institute for a Broadband Enabled Society at the University of Melbourne, and a senior policy advisor in the Rudd and Gillard governments.

Emma has published reports, articles and opinion pieces on a wide range of public policy issues, which have appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, the Guardian, The Australian, and a number of online publications. She is a regular panellist on The Drum on ABC TV.

Emma holds a BA with First Class Honours from LaTrobe University and an MA with Distinction from Monash. She sits on the board of the Prader-Willi Research Foundation Australia.

Website: www.percapita.org.au
Twitter: @DawsonEJ

Disability workforce participation meets the future of work
Disability inclusion in the cooperatives and mutuals sector in Australia

Brett de Hoedt

Hootville Communications

Some things change - our emcee does not. Once more Brett de Hoedt will attempt to make our conference all about himself. The one-time journalist and publicist has recently launched a podcast: The Hardest Word which he declares to be "the most important audio recording since The Beatles." We cannot independently verify this claim. When not emceeing or podcasting he trains nonprofits in communications via his consultancy Hootville Communications.

The motivated and committed employer (panel session)
Welcome to day two
Disability workforce participation meets the future of work
Welcome to day one

Peter De Natris

Houthera Pty Ltd

Peter’s major current role is as a Strategic Adviser to the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA). His focus is on early childhood and early intervention for NDIS participants.

In his current role he is focusing on key areas of Scheme Design and Approach which recognise the shift from the current program based systems to an Insurance scheme based on markets that need to be developed and supported so that best practice can be enabled and continuous improvement encouraged.

He also works with many young people with permanent disability encouraging them to focus on employment and economic activity in their early adult lives to increase their independence and provide options to how they can live their lives beyond specialist services.

Peter has worked in, around and with all levels of Government on policy and strategy to improve outcomes for people with disability in employment. Driven by a passion to see the Australian commitment to economic independence of people with disability and the potential of these people realised, he recognises the potential of the NDIS as a key enabler for PWD.

Peter has a Masters in Public Policy and Teaching, he worked extensively in Victoria and NSW Governments in various senior executive roles focusing on community inclusion and improved employment outcomes for people with a permanent disability.

Understanding the needs of people with intellectual disability to improve their lives, economic participation and employment

Stefanie Dimov

University of Melbourne
Project Manager

Stefanie Dimov is the project manager on the Improving Disability Employment Study (IDES) and the Youth Employment Study (YES) conducted at the University of Melbourne. She has been working within the Disability and Health Unit for over two years, working closely with employment service providers, youth employment program providers and disability advocates in the field. Stefanie has a multi-disciplinary background in psychology and public health and extensive experience in project management. She has a strong interest in health and wellbeing in the context of disability and employment and her recent work aims to provide evidence that will inform policy and service delivery within the disability sector.

Website: https://www.ides-study.org.au/
Twitter: @DimovStefanie

Building an evidence base: Three research studies to improve how we work (3 x 30 min sessions)
Disability and employment: Evidence from the IDES and YES research programs

Andrew Domahidy

Down Syndrome Advisory Network - Down Syndrome Australia
Deputy Chair

Andrew is the deputy chair of the Down syndrome Australia Advisory Network. The Down syndrome Advisory Network is a group of people with Down syndrome from across the country who advise DSA on all program, policy and advocacy work. Andrew is working in mainstream employment with HCF and lives independently in his own apartment.

“Ask an expert” about employment and Down syndrome

Donna Eiby

The Future Work Skills Academy
Creative Director

Donna works at the IoE – the Intersection of Everything and the Future of Work.
She started her professional life as an educator and this theme runs through her entire journey so far. Along the way she became interested in industrial law and human capital transformation. 25 years consulting in organisational transformation primarily in tech and working on billion-dollar projects added another addiction to a growing list. Her experience spans the verticals of maritime, defence, financial services, employment and disability employment , pharmaceuticals , transport, human services, ticketing. Just to name a few.
She loves to learn and has a number of undergraduate and post graduate degrees the latest in innovation, strategy, entrepreneurship and creativity. She recently extended her academic passion into a PhD with a research focus on the intention of employers to train their workforce in uniquely human skills.
The Future of Work is a complex, atomized topic and she leverages her Fellowship of the Royal Society, participation in developing the first Future of Work Diploma in Latin America, and membership of research trials globally to connect with organisations and individuals who inhabit this space.
She is the Founder and Creative Director of the Future Work Skills Academy. A global, agile, adaptive coalition of experts in those skills identified by the Institute for the Future as necessary for humans to feel engaged, deliver value and find purpose as a number of significant, accelerating factors conspire to radically disrupt work as we know it. The organisation’s primary focus is building agency in these skills; in unlocking human potential that has largely been ignored in the past 2 centuries of industrial education and learning. This venture has necessitated Donna gaining a deeper understanding of neuroscience, learning science and the frontier technologies of the 4th Industrial Revolution that converge with skills building in ways never before imagined. And it is these topics she weaves into her foresights about humans and the future of work.

(Human) Future work skills: The opportunity for a human renaissance
Disability workforce participation meets the future of work

Simon Fairall

Ability Options Olympus Solutions
General Manager

Simon Fairall has a BA DipED from Macquarie University. He has 20 years’ experience leading employment programs. He is currently part of the Ability Options leadership team and reports directly to the CEO. He is responsible for high level strategy, governance, reporting, performance management and outcomes.

Website: https://abilityoptions.org.au/

How does length of unemployment impact what we do in DES?

Jocelyn Franciscus

Occupational Therapist, AT Chat Engagement Officer, Founder/Director.

Jocelyn Franciscus is an Occupational Therapist and Founder/Director of Cord, an organisation which raises funds to provide people with spinal cord injuries life-improving technology and equipment. She is a founding team member and current project officer of AT Chat: a peer-to-peer assistive technology information and mentoring platform.
Jocelyn has a lived experience with disability and recently received the inaugural AFDO Award for her workshop at the 2018 Australian Assistive Technology Conference on Co-designing Assistive Technology and Support.

A user perspective: Assistive technology and its capacity building opportunities with employment

Dr Ben Gauntlett

Australian Human Rights Commission
Disability Discrimination Commissioner

Ben Gauntlett commenced his term as Disability Discrimination Commissioner on May 7, 2019.
Ben is a quadriplegic following a schoolboy rugby union accident aged 16 in Perth, Western Australia. He has the experience of a person living with a disability and accessing care in Australia (Western Australia, Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory), the United Kingdom and the United States of America. He will be a participant in the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

Why person-centred is the core of disability policy and where is it taking us?

Michael Goldsworthy

Australian Strategic Services
Managing Director and Principal Consultant

A visionary, a strategist, a big picture thinker, Michael is widely known and acknowledged throughout Australia by directors, CEOs and executives of community businesses (NFPs) for his unique facilitation processes, his comprehensive understanding of the emerging and future trends of disability, mental health, aged care, hospital and health care, and related human service industries/sectors.
Examples of Michael’s specialisation and key achievements are:
• Continually focused on the big shifts and exploring the emerging opportunities that aren’t yet on directors, chief executive officers and executives’ agendas, but ought to be
• Facilitation, development and project management of governance, strategy, business development, amalgamation, merger and partnership projects
• Worked with over 6,000 boards, chief executive officers and senior management teams of community businesses, in all states of Australia over the last 26 years
• Approximately sixty to sixty-five per cent of projects are with stand-alone organisations, in particular in rural, regional and remote Australia
• Originally qualifying in disability, he has a comprehensive understanding of disability and has worked with a significant number of disability, disability employment, mental health and related organisations.

DES today, DES tomorrow…the governance and organisational journey to employee-centric business models in a competitive marketplace
TBA breakout
Disability workforce participation meets the future of work

Renae Greenway

City of Cockburn
HR Business Partner

Renae Greenway is the HR Business Partner at the City of Cockburn which is a Local Government authority 27 kilometres south of the Perth CBD. The city has a current population of over 112,000 and borders the cities of Fremantle, Kwinana, Canning, Melville and Armadale in the Perth metropolitan area. According to the 2016 census, 3.8% of the Cockburn community identified as requiring assistance in their daily lives as a result of a disability. Renae and the City of Cockburn are highly committed to the employment of people with disability in their local community. Most recently they have been working with Bizlink to achieve this. Renae has worked in HR since 2005 and has been involved with the Supported Wage System and Disability Employment since its inception at the City in 2004.

The motivated and committed employer (panel session)

Anthony Hart

Hart Wellbeing Pty Ltd

Anthony Hart is a successful entrepreneur and company director, recently building an eight store PETstock group within the major Australian pet retailer PETstock. In early 2018, he decided to focus 100% of his inspiring passion on developing suicide prevention tools, based on his personal experience.
On 7 November 2003 while in Sydney, Anthony was privately battling anxiety and depression. He was sleep-deprived, on anti-depressants and subsequently made a significant attempt on his life. A stroke of luck saw him survive. Anthony now shares his experience as a professional speaker, with a life-changing, powerful story of how he rebuilt his life and is now in a position to share remarkable lessons with people in need. During his recovery, he put together four steps to better mind health. Today, Anthony is on a mission sharing his powerful story of hope, recovery and arduous rehabilitation, to improve the mind health of all Australians.

Website: www.hartwellbeing.com.au

Lifeback Tracker: Four powerful steps to better mind health

Dr Kylie Henderson

The Better Health Generation
Managing Director

Dr Kylie Henderson is a clinical psychologist, Founder and Managing Director of The Better Health Generation Australia & UK. The Better Health Generation comprises the brands Back2Work, Care2, Me & Work, Assessment2, Your Health+ and Aim2Work UK. Back2Work is Australia’s leading provider of psychological, physical and medical health care services for job seekers, Employment Service Providers and Disability Employment Services providers.
Dr Henderson has more than 20 years experience in the employment services industry and APS having worked for large, national employment services providers overseeing their health and employment programs. She holds a Doctorate of Clinical Psychology, is an Adjunct Research Fellow at the University of Southern Queensland and full member of the APS Clinical College. She is an Associate of the APA & BPS, a fellow of the Institute of Employability Professionals (UK) and a graduate of Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD).

Website: www.thebetterhealthgeneration.com.au

How does length of unemployment impact what we do in DES?

Dr Kylie Henderson

Back2Work Health Specialists
Managing Director

Dr Kylie Henderson is a clinical psychologist, Founder and Managing Director of The Better Health Generation Australia & UK. The Better Health Generation comprises the brands Back2Work, Care2, Me & Work, Assessment2, Your Health+ and Aim2Work UK. Back2Work is Australia’s leading provider of psychological, physical and medical health care services for job seekers, for Employment Service Providers and Disability Employment Services providers. Dr Henderson has more than 20 years experience in the employment and health services industry. She holds a Doctorate of Clinical Psychology, is an Adjunct Research Fellow at the University of Southern Queensland, AHPRA approved supervisor, and committee member of the APS Clinical College. She is an Associate of the APA & BPS, a fellow of the Institute of Employability Professionals (IEP UK), a graduate of Australian Institute of Company Directors and a certified member of the Digital Health Executives Network part of Health Informatics Society of Australia.

Website: www.back2work.com.au

Advancing work and health solutions through technology

Jeannie Hodges

National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA)
Director, NDIS Participant Employment Taskforce

Jeannie is a Director in the National Disability Insurance Agency Participant Employment Taskforce. She has deep knowledge of the scheme, having commenced in the Agency in May 2013 at the trial site in Geelong. Building on 15 years’ experience as a DES provider with CRS Australia, Jeannie is guiding NDIS policy and practice to support participants exercise their right to work, with a focus on building staff capability and planning expertise.

NDIS Participant Employment Taskforce, SLES and a provider’s perspective

Samantha Jenkinson

People with Disabilities WA (PDWA)
Executive Director

Samantha has been an advocate for the rights of people with disability since the early 1990s, and throughout her professional life as a social worker. Through this time she has worked and advocated in many disability-related areas including employment services, individualised funding and person-centred planning. Highlights of Samantha’s work have been her time with the Australian Federation of Disability Organisations (AFDO); her involvement in development of self-directed funding and direct payments in Victoria; developing policy on self-directed services in the community sector in WA; being involved as an ‘expert’ in the NDIS development, and subsequently on co-design groups with the National Disability Insurance Agency Independent Advisory Council. Samantha has kept coming back to employment as a key driver for the inclusion of people with disability as active and valued citizens.
Samantha has been involved as a volunteer with many community organisations on management committees and Boards of governance, including being a past chair of the Australian Federation of Disability Organisations, and past chair of the Ministerial Advisory Council on Disability in Western Australia. Samantha spent 6 years as a Local Government Councillor at the City of Stirling (2011-2017). Currently she is Executive Director of People with Disabilities WA and is focused on ensuring the voice of people with disabilities is heard in decision making.

Puzzling out the bigger picture

Cátia Malaquias

Starting with Julius
Lawyer, Board Director and Founder

Cátia Malaquias is a lawyer, board director and award-winning human rights and inclusion advocate.

Cátia is the founder of Starting With Julius, a non-profit organisation working to ensure the inclusive representation of people with disabilities in advertising and media, and has worked with organisations including Target, Kmart, ANZ, NAB, ABC Children's Television and Northern Pictures.

Cátia is also a co- founder of All Means All – The Australian Alliance for Inclusive Education, a multi-stakeholder organisation advocating for the right of students with disabilities to an inclusive education. She also sits on the boards of Down Syndrome Australia and the Attitude Foundation.

In 2018, Cátia won the Tony Fitzgerald Memorial Human Rights Award and the AFR Women of Influence Award for Diversity and Inclusion. Cátia also won a 2017 National Disability Award.

Why person-centred is the core of disability policy and where is it taking us?

Jennie Milne

The Royal Automobile Club of Western Australia (RAC)
General Manager, Human Resources

Jennie is the General Manager, Human Resources at RAC. An authentic senior leader, she is passionate about inspiring and empowering other to achieve to their full potential.

In 2013 Jennie was awarded RAC’s ‘Leader of the Year’ and the RAC’s International Women’s Day Leadership Award.

Jennie champions and advocates for diversity and inclusion, with a strong passion for disability and gender diversity. Her approach is: Impact versus Intent; something valuable she learnt from her previous CEO Terry Agnew.

In 2017 Jennie was awarded the ‘Leading Edge Advocate Award’ from Edge Employment Solutions for championing disability employment.

Jennie is the General Manager lead for RAC’s Enabling All Abilities Working Group with the premise to focus on talent and ability and providing opportunities for those with a disability.

Jennie’s qualifications include a Bachelor of Applied Science (Mathematics & Computing) from Curtin University; and a Post Graduate Diploma in Human Resource Management from UWA where she won the award for Strategic Human Resource Management. In 2017 she completed the Australian Institute of Company Directors’ Director Pipeline Program and last year proudly became a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

The motivated and committed employer (panel session)

Dr Ann Nevile

Australian National University
Honorary Associate Professor

Ann Nevile is a social policy researcher at the Centre for Social Research and Methods, the Australian National University. Ann has spent the last twenty years talking to non-government service providers in Australia and the UK about what they do and the impact of funding and performance management frameworks on their work and on outcomes for clients. Employment, particularly disability employment, has been a focus of Ann’s research through two Australian Research Council Linkage projects in partnership with DEA, NDA, Jobs Australia and the Brotherhood of St Laurence. Ann is currently involved in research projects looking at the implementation of the NDIS and the introduction of risk responsive regulation of community housing, disability support and care and protection services in the ACT.

Building an evidence base: Three research studies to improve how we work (3 x 30 min sessions)
Looking back, moving forward

Brenda Odewahn

Ability Options
Chief Operating Officer

Brenda has worked in the employment services and disability sectors since 1997. In 2011 she joined Ability Options and worked with executive teams across employment services and disability gaining opportunity to understand the preparation for the trial of NDIS and working with staff delivering services in accommodation and clinical services. In 2017 she became the CEO of Olympus Solutions, the employment services arm of Ability Options covering disability and mainstream employment including an Aboriginal specialist service, which provided her the opportunity to visit the UN. In 2018, she took over the role of Chief Operating Officer responsible for operations across both employment services and disability services covered by NDIS. One of her key areas of interest in the last few years has been development and growth of capacity building activities for people with disability to aspire to obtain and maintain employment in the open labour market.

NDIS Participant Employment Taskforce, SLES and a provider’s perspective

David Petherick

Deputy CEO

David started work with VALID in 2017 and is the Deputy CEO and through that role he is also involved with Inclusion Australia and the Disability Advocacy Network of Australia (DANA). He is excited about being a part of the great work that these organisations do and he is continuing to learn from everyone in the disability advocacy community. He has worked in the disability sector for over 25 years.

Before he started with VALID David worked with the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) for 20 months at their National Office in Geelong, mostly working on projects to increase employment opportunities for people with disability.

David was also the CEO of the Australian Camps Association and People Outdoors for almost 10 years until 2015 and during that time he saw the great benefits that building resilience can provide for all of us.

David also worked for 8 years at the Office of the Public Advocate and before that he was CEO of the Barwon Disability Resource Council in Geelong.

David barracks for the Richmond Tigers and loves long distance, multi-day hiking and golf.

Understanding the needs of people with intellectual disability to improve their lives, economic participation and employment

Kylie Preston

Down Syndrome Australia
National ILC Project Manager

Kylie is the National ILC Project Manager for Down Syndrome Australia. Kylie has extensive experience managing resource development, project management and reporting through senior roles in the not for profit sector over the past 20 years. With a focus on community inclusion, Kylie has managed the development of a Community Inclusion Toolkit and app to support inclusion in education, employment, health and community groups.

Website: www.downsyndrome.org.au

“Ask an expert” about employment and Down syndrome

Andrew Rocchiccioli

Regional HR Manager WA

Andrew Rocchiccioli is the Regional HR Manager – WA for Bunnings Group. The WA network includes 44 operating locations as well as a Store Support team. Andrew has been part of the Wesfarmers Group for over 26 years, including 18 years with Bunnings and has been in a variety of roles in accounting, operations and, recently, HR. Inclusion and diversity of the team remains a high priority of the business, with the clear goal of our team being reflective of the community we operate in. Andrew has a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in accounting and a CPA.

The motivated and committed employer (panel session)

Senator the Hon Anne Ruston

Parliament of Australia
Minister for Families and Social Services

Minister for Families and Social Services, Senator the Hon. Anne Ruston, has been a Senator since September 2012.
Senator Ruston was appointed Assistant Minister of Agriculture and Water Resources in September 2015. She was subsequently appointed as Assistant Minister for International Development and the Pacific in August 2018. Senator Ruston is also the Manager of Government Business in the Senate.
Prior to becoming a Senator, Anne held several senior positions in government and the private sector, including as the inaugural chief executive of the National Wine Centre. She was also a primary producer and irrigator, owning and operating the largest commercial rose garden in Australia.
Born and raised in Renmark, on the River Murray in South Australia, Anne is a proud member of the community where she still lives and works to this day. She is the only Senator for South Australia based in a regional area.
Outside of politics she supports Adelaide United in the A-League, enjoys walking her Labrador and spending time with family and friends.

Minister’s video address

Peter Smith

Centre for Disability Employment Research and Practice
Visiting Fellow, Cornell University, NY and Director,

Dr Peter Smith is the Director and Founder of the Centre for Disability Employment Research and Practice.

Peter has an extensive work background with people with disabilities and others with significant barriers to inclusion in society, as both, a therapist and systems advocate at both government and judicial levels. He has worked as a disability support worker, counsellor in disability employment services and Job Services working with people with significant barriers.

His current research focuses on social entreprise, transition to work and systems models. In his role as director of the Centre for Disability Employment Research and Practice (CDERP), his focus in on developing service provider transition models. Peter is a fellow of the School of Social and Political Sciences, University of Melbourne and a Visiting Fellow, ILR School Cornell University NY, were his focus in on developing a disability employment outcome measure based on Social Quality Theory.

Website: www.cderp.com.au

Disability workforce participation meets the future of work
A jobless future – what if there were no jobs to find? Would you still operate the same as you do today?

Ian Tsolakis

Crown Perth
Group Disability Employment Manager

Ian commenced at Crown in 2014, following 17 years in the employment services industry where he knew well the importance and power of employment. He has spent time becoming familiar with government’s Disability Employment Services (DES) and JobActive contracts. Knowing the demands of these programs, Ian realised there must be a better way for businesses requiring talent to access people with disability wanting to earn an income.
Ian’s enthusiasm is beyond doubt. His experience in employment services gave him the insider knowledge to design an employment model comprising of five pillars of strength. The five-pillar framework for CROWNability reflect Ian’s determination and persistence to effect positive outcomes for people with disability.
CROWNability is Crown Resorts’ strategy to attract, recruit, retain and achieve sustainable outcomes for people with disability.

The motivated and committed employer (panel session)

Daniel Valiente-Riedl

WorkFocus Australia
General Manager - JobAccess

Daniel has over 15 years of experience working in the disability sector. During this time, he has worked in the areas of mental health, intellectual, developmental, acquired and physical disability. Currently the General Manager for JobAccess, Daniel manages a WorkFocus Australia team delivering this award-winning service on behalf of the Australian Government.

Daniel has a passion for working with people and has occupied senior management positions in several organisations including volunteer Directorships in not-for-profit organisations. Daniel was also a part-time teacher at the Sydney Institute of TAFE, delivering courses within the Community and Mental Health Diplomas.

Daniel has completed studies in training and assessment, Management and Human Resources Management, and holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology, a Master of Business Administration and is currently completing a Master of Science in Organisational Psychology.

The power of feedback: how JobAccess is using Net Promoter Score to drive service delivery improvement.

Martin Wren

NOVA Employment

Martin Wren is the Chief Executive Officer of NOVA Employment, a Sydney based Disability Employment Service that has supported the vocational aspirations of people with disability for almost 30 years. More than 16,000 people have successfully been supported by NOVA Employment to gain work in open employment.
In 2009, Martin began the Focus on Ability Film Festival with a belief in the ability of people with disability, and the goal of bringing that belief to the world through the medium of film. Martin recognised the power of film to challenge people’s fixed beliefs and perceptions about the lives and abilities of people with disability around the world.

The Value of Employment: ‘Focus on Ability’ short film presentation