Chief Executive Officer
Brendan is married to Jane and has two children. He has held a number of senior management positions in his 23 years of experience working in and with the not-for-profit sector across WA in roles with the State government and community member-based organisations.
Brendan has volunteered in the disability sector since 2012 and has been actively engaged in various social inclusion projects.
Brendan is currently on extended leave, and Andrea Surman, our Operations Manager, will be Acting CEO.
Acting CEO and Operations Manager
Andrea has worked in leadership positions in the not-for-profit sector for over twenty years and more recently as an Assistant Director with the National Disability Insurance Agency. Andrea’s career has predominantly been in developing projects that create greater equity for society’s most vulnerable.
She has been married for over thirty-five years to her childhood sweetheart and has two adult children and two grandchildren.
Bachelor of Behavioural Science
Advocacy Services Manager
Karen changed careers several years ago because she was concerned about the way that many people in our society are marginalized and discriminated against and wanted to do something to help them. She has worked for an Aboriginal organisation assisting people of the Stolen Generations and has worked in Information and Referrral, Individual Advocacy and Project Management in the disability sector, specialising in working with people with disabilities who have trauma backgrounds and those who are institutionalised. Karen has participated in advisory opportunities with government bodies such as the National Centre for Action on Child Sexual Abuse, the Joint Standing Committee on the Implementation of the National Redress Scheme, the NSW Ageing and Disability Commission, a NSW State Government forum on victims of crime, and a National Forum on Inhumane, Degrading and Cruel Treatment in Detention. Karen also participates in advisory panels for research projects and was recently a co-author of a published journal article about reparations for people with dementia who are abused in care homes.
Karen enjoys spending time with her grown-up children and grandson, and lives with her two rescued best mates - a greyhound and a mixed breed doggo with a big personality! She coaches a women’s soccer team, loves rock and roll dancing and likes to unwind by making crochet projects.
Bachelor of Design (Communication), Cert IV in Business Administration, Diploma of Community Services, working towards Bachelor of Social Science (Sociology).
Individual Adovocate - NDIS Appeals
Glenda is passionate about helping reduce the stigma and discrimination experienced by people living with disability, especially those who experience mental illness, as a part of that – a passion recognised in 2012 when she was awarded equal first prize for Human Rights Law. She has had a long and diverse career over the last forty years, bringing many different perspectives to her work.
Bachelor of Arts, B Laws, MBA.
Project Officer - Individual Capacity Building
Idil has worked extensively as an advocate for refugee and migrant services for over 20 years. Her interpreting skills have helped shape the first all-ethnic women's association in Wellington, New Zealand. While in Australia, Idil has worked for the Department of Indigenous Affairs, Legal Aid and Ronald McDonald House Charities.
Bachelor’s in Psychology (Victoria University, New Zealand), Currently Law Student at Murdoch University.
Julie has worked in the sector for several years, firstly as a Social Trainer with Disability Services Commission. Then, with the introduction of the NDIS, worked in the private sector, supporting people to transition to the NDIS. Julie spent 12 months working in aged care before returning to work with people with disability as an Advocate.
Julie loves football and is a keen supporter of the East Perth Football Club.
Mark is passionate about improving access and inclusion for people with disabilities in all aspects of community living. He has worked extensively across State Government departments and all West Australian local governments to create more employment opportunities for people with disabilities, public information, services and facilities. He has also worked across industry groups to raise awareness and provision of access and inclusion.
Matt is passionate about human rights issues and empowering people to have their voices heard. Matt has experience working in the community services sector as a Therapeutic Carer and Therapeutic Case Manager in Melbourne, supporting young people who live in out-of-home care and supporting families to achieve safe reunifications. Matt’s most recent position was case managing a home in a transitional program for young people transitioning into independent living.
Outside of work, Matt loves swimming, photography, live music, and football.
Project Officer - Community Disability Advocate
Nicola arrived in Australia from the UK in 2013.
She changed her career to community services in 2018 after working for 20 years in the science industry.
Nicola’s own lived experience with mental health prompted her to use her experiences to help others.
Nicola has experience working as a community support worker and mental health recovery worker with knowledge in the NDIS space including NDIS access, planning and implementation.
Her passion is building relationships with all individuals and supporting them to find services and networks that allow them to live their best lives.
Nicola loves keeping fit, being outdoors and travelling.
Nicola has a Cert IV in Mental Health and Diploma in Community Services.
Project Officer - Business Accessibility Empowerment Project
He is passionate about human rights, equity and social justice. Shaun and his partner have two cats, and both love a good coffee date.