Playgroup Victoria is governed by a board of directors, each bringing unique skills that assist with our strategic focus and purpose. Our board is made up of a diverse array of professionals, here to aid the drive of our organisation.
Felicity Dunn – Chair of the Playgroup Victoria Board
Felicity was appointed to the board in 2015. Based in Ballarat, Felicity runs Kinder Surveys, a service providing parent satisfaction surveys on behalf of early childhood education & care providers, as well as conducting projects around education and training. She served as President of her community kindergarten for several years and, prior to children, worked in state government, focusing on education regulation, qualifications policy, IT systems, stakeholder engagement and regulation. She has two adorable children, who, like Felicity, thoroughly enjoyed the fun and friendships of playgroup
Antony Elliot – Expert Member
Antony is a senior finance executive with broad industry experience including logistics, mining, manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, aviation, luxury goods retailing and agriculture. He has public and private company background and board experience as an executive and non-executive director. Antony’s primary focus is in corporate finance, seeking to maximise shareholder value by correctly aligning operational and financial factors and behaviours. This covers reporting metrics, capital allocation, financing, structuring and mergers and acquisitions. Outside of work Antony has a small property breeding sheep. He likes to sail and ski but he doesn’t get to as he has a 3 year-old daughter. Antony has a direct personal interest in early childhood development but also a more general concern to support equality of opportunity at this critical stage of life.
Emma Forsyth – Elected Member
Emma was appointed to the board in 2018. She has two decades of corporate experience primarily in the field of Human Resources and Organisational Change. She has worked across all of Australia, New Zealand and Japan and is passionate about seeing organisations and the individuals within them effectively grow and adapt to ensure sustainable success. As a new mum to a gorgeous 7 month old daughter she brings both relevant corporate experience and a current perspective of playgroup to Playgroup Victoria.
Joanne Clark – Elected Member
A qualified Chartered Accountant and member of the Governance Institute of Australia, Joanne has extensive experience in the financial services industry with expertise in the field of audit, compliance and risk management. After an extended international career, Joanne returned to Australia with her young son and joined the local playgroup. It was here that Joanne found support and friendship during her children’s early childhood years. Joanne was appointed to the Board in 2018.
Kerrie Neophytou – Elected Member
Kerrie Neophytou is a passionate educator who has been recognised as one of the most outstanding educators in Australia, being listed in the 2017 edition of The Educator’s Hot List report. She is currently Head of Preparatory School at Aitken College in Victoria. Kerrie was a board director at St John’s College, Preston (2013-2018), treasurer of the Independent Primary School Head Association Victoria Branch, an ambassador for Yellow Ladybugs (an organisation devoted to the needs of girls with autism), and a member of the advisory board for Anaphylaxis Network Australia. She volunteers her services and expertise – supporting families within the shelter of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese (Victoria) for over two decades.
Kerrie’s background in special education has enabled her to support families in all aspects of well-being and education. Her focus has been to provide a framework for children and young people who are struggling, and to provide parents and families with assistance where needed. The mechanism has assisted families to support children with autism spectrum disorder, learning and behaviour challenges and school refusal.
Kate Bentley – Expert Member
Kate Bentley is a high performing executive with a career spanning the healthcare, pharmaceutical, utilities, logistics and most recently the superannuation industry. Kate has a degree in Economics and Finance and a Masters of Business Administration. She has extensive experience in corporate level strategy, digital transformation, establishing high performing commercial teams and has experience working in global roles including Japan, Emerging Markets and Europe. Kate currently leads the team responsible for Customer Experience Strategy and Design at CBUS.
Kate was brought up by two teachers, who were passionate about childhood development. Now that she has her own family, she has experienced first hand how playgroups lay strong foundations for children, families and communities.
Sarah Cummings – Expert Member
Sarah has over twelve years of executive and board level experience across the public, commercial & not for profit sectors with particular experience in the wealth management, superannuation, insurance, childhood education, health, business consulting, financial services and community service industries. In addition to sitting on the Playgroup Victoria Board, Sarah runs a healthtech startup, Teach Ted, and consults to the financial services industry. She holds a B Business (Business Management), Certificate in Governance Practice and COBIT5 Foundation, IT Governance. Sarah brings strong product, marketing, commercialisation and technology perspectives to the Playgroup Victoria Board and also sits on the Fundraising Committee.
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