Theresa Swanborough OAM – Chairperson
Theresa has been with the RDNS Homeless Persons Program, now renamed Bolton Clarke, for more than 25 years. In her role as Manager, Theresa has overseen the growth of the program from a small team of dedicated nurses working in the inner city to a team of more than 30 working across the greater Melbourne metropolitan area.
In 2002, Theresa received an Order of Australia Medal for her work both as a nurse and as a homeless advocate. Theresa also had a longstanding relationship with the Council to Homeless Persons where she has been an employee, Board member (multiple times), Board Chair and a member of the Finance Committee.
Sophie Brown – Vice Chairperson
Sophie’s involvement with the Mental Health Legal Centre began in 2013 when she joined its campaign against funding cuts. Sophie is a Senior Associate in the Workplace Relations & Safety Practice at Lander & Rogers and, as part of the firm’s pro bono program, Sophie represents MHLC clients at Mental Health Tribunal hearings. Sophie joined the Board in 2017.
Geoff Southwell – Treasurer
Geoff is CEO of Victorian disability advocacy agency Leadership Plus. He has many years of executive experience in information technology, operations, consulting and governance with small business, government and international enterprises as well as board experience in not for profit organisations.
Geoff has a Bachelor of Science and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
James is a former volunteer and employee of the MHLC. During his time at the MHLC he coordinated the Night Service telephone legal advice line, arranged representation for clients before the Mental Health Tribunal and supported various MHLC services in a number of capacities. James currently works in tort litigation across all Australian jurisdictions, specifically in personal injury claims resulting from historical abuse.
Jennifer brings her values of care, inclusiveness and integrity to MHLC, along with over 20 years of experience in business finance and leadership. Jennifer has prior experience as Treasurer and committee member of Restoring Hope and was a volunteer member of RSPCA’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee in its foundation year.
Jennifer is a CPA, who has been leading and delivering accounting functions within large, complex organisations. She is experienced in governance, organisational change, process improvement and operational efficiency. Jennifer has held senior leadership roles on management teams, mergers and acquisitions committee and diversity and inclusion committees, where she was embraced for her strategic thinking, constructive challenging and collaboration.
Jennifer has completed the Australian Institute of Company Directors course.