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We provide free legal advice for women in Western Australia.

Our Board

Zoe Henham (Chairperson)

I joined the Board in July 2018.  I began my career in 1995 as a chartered accountant in Australia before moving into the field of Human Resources in London. In 2004, I moved to Hong Kong where I worked as a global Human Resources executive in the investment baking sector. In addition to almost 20-year global career in Human Resources I have extensive not-for-profit experience. I was actively involved as a board member of The Womens Foundation in Hong Kong. I relocated to Perth in Late 2017 and was delighted to be appointed to the WLSWA board in mid 2018. I am incredibly passionate about diversity, inclusion, equality, justice and empowerment especially as it relates to women and girls. I am proud to support WLSWA achieve their vision of ensuring justice, empowerment and safety for women and their children.

Darelle Pola (Treasurer)

I joined the WLSWA Board in November 2017.  I am a qualified Accountant with over 20 years’ commercial experience in Accounting, Administration and Project Management.  More recently I have developed my expertise in Systems Accounting and Business Excellence and am currently employed with Metso Australia Ltd as their Business Systems Manager.  I joined the WLSWA Board to support the great work the organisation does in empowering women.  I feel grateful for the opportunity to support the organisation in providing essential services and the right to justice.

Nicola Ashford (Secretary)

I joined the Board in October 2017.  I am a family lawyer working at Culshaw Miller Lawyers in Perth.  I started my involvement with WLSWA as a volunteer in the evening clinic before becoming a Board member in 2017.  As a family lawyer I am well aware of the great need for the services WLSWA provides the community.  I am very proud and grateful to be able to make a contribution to such valuable and important work.

Karen Brown (Ordinary Member)

I joined the Board in early 2015.   I am the National Director for Perth-based strategic communications consultancy, Cannings Purple. The firm provides tailored strategies and high-level communication programs to a diverse client base across media, government, investor, employee and community audiences.  I have previously worked in the media and held senior roles in both State and Federal politics.  I am also a Director at Rural Health West, Rural Workforce Australia, Edge Employment Solutions and a Board Member of the Salvation Army Advisory Board.  I joined the WLSWA Board as my long-standing commitment to women’s issues and social justice strongly aligned with WLSWA’s mission.

Donna Charlesworth (Ordinary Member)

I joined the WLSWA Board in September 2016.  I am a lawyer at Clayton Utz specialising in construction and major projects. Clayton Utz assists WLSWA with Criminal Injuries Compensation applications on a pro bono basis and I supervise each of those pro bono matters. I joined the Board because I wanted to become more involved in supporting the WLSWA and the fantastic role it plays in supporting disadvantaged women in WA by improving their access to justice.

Eduardo Farate (Ordinary Member)

I joined the WLSWA Board in October 2017.  I am currently the Principal Policy and Planning Officer, Cultural Diversity, for the Department of Communities.  I have previously worked as a Family Court Counsellor at the Family Court of Western Australia, and as a counsellor in private practice.  I hold a Bachelor of Social Work (Honours) and have a keen interest in multicultural issues, as demonstrated by my PhD research and previous Masters of Social Work (2000) research.  Joining the board of the WLSWA gave me an opportunity to support the critical work that this organisation undertakes with women in WA, including those of cultural and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Marnie Williams (Ordinary Member)

I joined the WLSWA Board in early 2015 acting as secretary until 2016, deputy chair until 2017 and taking over as Chairperson in early 2017 until mid 2018.  Since joining the Board I have transitioned from working in the refugee sector as a trauma counsellor, to working as a lawyer for the Aboriginal Family Law Service.  My areas of work are family law, child protection and criminal injuries compensation for victims of family violence.  I currently live in Carnarvon in the Gascoyne region, enjoying the change of scenery that comes with rural and remote work.

Julie Whitlock (Ordinary Member)

Joining the Board in May 2019, I bring a background in strategy, marketing, customer experience, digital channel management and large scale transformation programs. I am currently  the Associate Director, Digital Innovations at Murdoch University within the IT Services division. Last year, I was honoured to be elected to the Murdoch University Senate and with a desire to encourage more women in STEM, I recently founded the Murdoch Women in IT networking group. I am a consumer advocate for the National Children’s Digital Health Collaborative and a member of the Health Consumer’s Council and the Consumer & Community Health Research Network. I have completed a number of executive education courses in the areas of leadership and management in addition to holding a Graduate Diploma from ECU.

Melissa Callanan (Ordinary Member)

I joined the Board in May 2019. I am currently the Project Director FameLab with the Foundation for the WA Museum. I am passionate about developing alternative revenue streams within the not-for-profit sector. I have contributed to building sustainability within many creative organisations and developed best practice models in business development for social impact organisations. I have held a number senior management positions with leading creative organisations including Barking Gecko Theatre Company, Perth International Arts Festival, RTRFM 92.1 (community radio), Fashion Council WA (Telstra Perth Fashion Festival) and the Australian Writers’ Guild. My connection to the arts has always been about a desire to give people a voice through storytelling. I am currently completing a Juris Doctor at UWA Law School as another form of storytelling to give women power. I am inspired to seek justice for women.

Kirsty Moore (Ordinary Member)

I joined the Board in May 2019. I work for the Commonwealth Government agency, Indigenous Business Australia (IBA) as Executive Director Products and Markets. IBA provides financial products and services to further the economic development of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people across Australia with products including low deposit home loans, start-up business finance and support, and investment. I joined IBA in 2018 after three years as a director of commercial activity for the WA Government where I was head of both the Business Development and Asset Management Directorates of the Housing Authority. There I had the responsibility for the $14.5bn WA social housing asset portfolio. A graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, I have a strong background in technical accounting, corporate governance and commercial finance. Prior to joining the public sector, I worked for Pricewaterhouse Coopers and National Australia Bank.

The latest news & insights

WLSWA restricted services to 26 June 2019

11 June 2019 News

Important message: unfortunately due to recent staff illness and absences we will not be taking new referrals or making any new appointments prior to 26 June 2019. Our phone lines remain open for enquiries and existing clients and we will refer matters to appropriate services where that is possible; otherwise the Legal Aid Information Line can be contacted on 1300 …

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New Dates Available: WLSWA Family Law (Property) Legal Clinics

5 June 2019 News

WLSWA runs a free Family Law (Property) Legal Clinic once a month to provide eligible women with one-off legal advice about their family law financial matter. This is mainly advice about their family law property settlement matters but could also include child support, spousal maintenance, adult child maintenance or questions about court procedure or enforcement of current orders. Please note …

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