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Meet The Team

Our vision is 'a community inspired and empowered by people of all ages and abilities'.  All the services we provide and the work we do is aimed at achieving this vision.

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Board Members


PRESIDENT

Rhys Boyle

I am particularly proud to be associated with an organisation whose focus is squarely on meeting the needs of our community in such innovative and progressive ways.

Through being a Board member of Mpower, I have the opportunity to contribute relevant knowledge and governance skills developed over a 30-year career in business, finance and the aged care sector.

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VICE PRESIDENT

Kerrie Hughson

I am proud to be part of a knowledgeable Board who genuinely care about the unique services that Mpower provide to the community.

I have personally learnt a lot from my time on the Board and am proud to play a part in providing these important services to the community. I decided to become a Board member because of how Mpower’s Carer Support Program helped my Nana. Even though she is no longer involved due to my Pop passing away some time ago, she still regularly catches up with friends she made during her time at Mpower and has fond memories of the program. Professionally I am a Chartered Accountant / Partner at Sinclair Wilson and bring strong financial knowledge to the Board.

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Treasurer

Michael Crothers

I am pleased to be a Board member of an organisation that has such a profound and positive impact on participants and their families.

As a parent of a child navigating the NDIS system, I understand the participant’s journey through the system and the link between participant-centred practice and positive participant outcomes. I admire the professionalism of Mpower staff and have a strong appreciation of the important role Mpower plays in the community. Employed as Manager of Data and Business Performance with SED Advisory, I recognise the importance of governance in developing a strong organisation culture and strategic direction.

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Board Member

Neil Ballard

I have had links with Mpower since the late 1980s and have watched the organisation grow and develop over time.

It is satisfying being part of an organisation that makes a difference and remains true to its mission as a community-based organisation, building the capacity of people to reach their potential and have meaningful connections to their communities. My extensive experience working in community services, particularly in the disability sector, and thorough knowledge of the service system in the South West Victoria led me to being invited to join the Board in 2011.

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BOARD MEMBER

Helen Bayne

It gives me great satisfaction to play a small role in supporting the talented, caring and passionate staff at Mpower. They are an exemplary team who make a positive difference to clients, their families and the wider community.

Mpower’s community-focused approach and commitment to achieving equality for people with a disability honours its grassroots origins and inspired me to join the Board. I bring an independent voice to the Board and a wealth of knowledge in both business and social responsibility. I am committed to improving health and social outcomes for vulnerable people, their families, carers and communities.

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BOARD MEMBER

David Beard

I have had the pleasure of working with and using Mpower services both professionally and personally. My affiliation with Mpower has given me invaluable insights into the needs of individuals and families living with disabilities.

Mpower’s reputation for providing quality services to members, individuals and families is paramount to my role as a Board member. I take pride in the fact that Mpower remains client focussed and keeps this central in both its operations and service provision. As an educator of 35 years, I enjoy working with a Board who maintain a client-centric approach and act with great integrity to help Mpower reach its goals and objectives.

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BOARD MEMBER

Michele Downs

As a practicing Solicitor, I am passionate about guardianship, protecting the rights of people with a disability to determine their lives, and ensuring that vulnerable adult children remain protected and free from exploitation.

I believe Mpower plays a pivotal role by making resources available to families to divert young people from the court system and lessening the risk to both the individual and the community. My strong interest in disability and family law grew from lived experience in my family, which also led me to join the Board in 2017.

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Board Member

Delna Plathottam

Both my genuine interest in empowering clients and passion for the vision of Mpower led me to join the Board in 2020.

My role contributes in a small way to what Mpower does so splendidly. Mpower’s professional and committed staff support clients and families through high quality service delivery and innovative practices to maintain Mpower’s focus on community, inclusivity and empowering individuals. Professionally, my experience in health, quality and risk management and volunteering assists me to ensure the Mpower Board remains true to its mission. I am proud to articulate Mpower’s accomplishments to the wider community and garner support from the community through advocacy.

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Executive Team


Chief Executive Officer

Kevin Mills

I am all about making an impact on people’s lives. After growing up on a cropping farm near Horsham, I became a certified practising accountant (CPA) and built-up corporate experience focused on management accounting, leadership and strategy.

I have held roles as Chief Financial Officer and CEO at community and health services in the Wimmera before joining Mpower. I am drawn to Mpower simply by what we do. Our Mission “Take the lead in providing quality services that build the capacity of people to reach their potential and empower people to have meaningful connections to their communities” really hits home to me. This starts with clarity of purpose and sense of mission that will lead us to imagine the impossible and deliver it. I want to prioritize innovation and advocacy that is centered on our core values of Respect, Empowerment, Quality and New Learning. I truly believe that each of us must find meaning in our work. The best work happens when you know that it’s not just work, but something that will improve other people’s lives. Mpower is already delivering excellent outcomes for our client base and is strong financially which gives us the resources to add to that. It’s a privilege to join such an extraordinary agency, with such a dedicated team that cares so deeply about our mission.

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Chief Operating Officer

Trudy Marr

As Chief Operating Officer, I am responsible for the Operations teams at Mpower including People and Culture, Finance, Plan Management, IT, Quality and Risk and Business Support.

My teams work closely with the service delivery teams to ensure we have the best supports in place from recruitment and retention, quality frameworks and fit for purpose infrastructure, resources and IT equipment. I began my career in the Community Services sector following completion of a BA Community Education and Development in Scotland. In 2015 I moved into a career in People and Culture where I developed a passion for organisational cultures, increasing organisational capacity and working to ensure resources can be utilised effectively to reach outcomes for service users. I have recently embarked on a Bachelor of Laws to further develop my knowledge of business. I love working at Mpower, with a group of highly skilled and dedicated people who work each day to ensure the highest level of service is provided to our community members. It also provides me with an opportunity to utilise my skills in the sector I began my working life in and which allows me to make a difference in the lives of others.

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Executive Manager Community Services

Cherieanne Carmichael

I have been in my current role as Executive Manager of Community Services since 2018. Previously I worked as a Family Lawyer in the South West for approximately 15 years.

I was inspired by my interactions with Community Services in my role as a lawyer and decided that I wanted to be part of the Community Services development with Mpower. I oversee the teams working in Integrated Family Services, Out of Home Care, Targeted Care Packages and Support for Carers. These services cover the full spectrum of age ranges and we work with individuals and families from a diverse range of backgrounds. At Mpower, we are passionate about coming alongside those in need and working with them and taking our lead from them, to assist them in reaching their personal and family goals. I am a mum to three teenagers, and they certainly keep me busy. It will not be news to those who know me, but I love to talk and eat. I am a local to this area and I stayed because of the beautiful place that we live. I am an avid supporter of the mighty Geelong Cats. My perfect day is a good book, 25 degrees and the beach. I am privileged to be able to assist our community in my role and look forward to making further contributions in the future. Bachelor of Commerce, Bachelor of Laws

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Executive Manager NDIS

Louise Jellie

I have the pleasure of leading the NDIS teams at Mpower; Client Engagement, Early Childhood Intervention, and Disability Services. These teams provide intake and planning, allied health, skill building, recreational and short-term accommodation programs for National Disability Insurance Scheme participants.

I am passionate about access to quality services for regional people. In this role I am able to use my knowledge, experience and advocacy skills to ensure families across the South West Region have a voice and gain access to needed services. I am a qualified Speech Pathologist with 30+ years of experience in the disability and health sectors and my special interest area is in Early Childhood Intervention. After 18 years at Specialist Children’s Services (SCS) in Warrnambool, firstly as a speech pathologist and later as manager, I moved to Mpower as the sole speech pathologist. Mpower and SCS had long worked in partnership, so the setting and team were familiar, and my opinion of services provided by Mpower was high. Being part of a team that helps children with disabilities access a basic human right, communication, has been the highlight of my career. The partnerships formed with families over the years are among my fondest memories. It is a joy to work in a team that has such strong regard for the people who use our services and to be all working together to ensure great outcomes. I feel lucky and proud to work with this dedicated, knowledgeable, and caring group of people. Bachelor of Applied Science (Speech Pathology), Master of Science.

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