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WHAT WE DO

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Dr Sureka Goringe

National Director

Sureka became National Director in July 2017, after two years as Associate Director. Sureka brings executive and board level leadership experience from fifteen years in the technology sector, ranging from venture funded start-ups to large public-sector organisations. Sureka has also served voluntarily as Chair of the National Committee for UnitingWorld Relief & Development (the board), and as organiser of the first UnitingWomen national conference.

Sureka’s work at UnitingWorld answers a life-long calling, weaving her global childhood, her faith, and her passion for justice with the all the skills gained through professional life.

An Australian since the nineties, Sureka comes via university in England, and a childhood in Botswana, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. Sureka has Ph.D. in Materials Science, is a Graduate Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, is the wife of a UCA minister, and the mother of two kids and a dog.

Jane Kennedy

Jane Kennedy

Head of International Programs

Jane Kennedy leads our collaborative programming with overseas partners to deliver impact and strengthen capacity.

During her time at UnitingWorld she spent 4 years as Associate Director of International Programs in Asia and Africa and 4 years as the Manager of Papua New Guinea and Vanuatu programs before that.

Jane leads a team of Program Managers and together they support our partners across South East Asia, South Asia, the Pacific and Africa.

The Fiji Islands were Jane’s introduction to the world of international development in 2004 when she lived and worked there for 3 years. She remains connected to the education of girls in Fiji’s rural north.

She’s perhaps had one too many tummy bugs and can’t abide airline food but is so grateful to be part of such life-changing work. Often the life being changed is hers.

Kath Lynch

Katherine Lynch

Head of Operations

Kath Lynch leads our organisational capacity to deliver impact. She oversees our governance and management processes that analyse, improve and demonstrate our effectiveness.

Kath joined the team in 2021, following six years in New York working with the International Rescue Committee. She brings years of operations, management and non-profit project experience to her role, from both the international development and disability sectors, and has a Master of Public Administration from New York University. Kath is dedicated to working across the organisation to identify and support opportunities to maximise UnitingWorld’s efficiency and effectiveness in achieving its mission and strategic goals.

Outside of work Kath is kept busy by her young children but tries to find time to enjoy her beloved local beach and coastal walks. An avid traveller, she enjoys meeting people from across the globe and sampling local (preferably spicy) cuisine.

Rick Carpenter

Rick Carpenter

Head of Fundraising & Communications

Rick leads our work in nurturing and expanding the group of amazing people who make our work possible through their generosity.

Debora Murthy

Dr Debora Murthy

Regional Coordinator, Southeast Asia Programs

Debora is a physician who has worked in community development in Indonesia for 20 years. She is excited to be working alongside partners and stakeholders to see women, the poor and other marginalised groups enjoy life with dignity. Her passion is to advocate within communities so that children can have access to education, families can have access to health care and sustainable sources of income, and everyone’s voice as part of a community is heard.

Debora brings her experience and enthusiasm to the South East Asia team, and looks forward to “growing together with partners South East Asia and the other UnitingWolrd teams to achieve our shared vision of transformed communities free from poverty and injustice.”

Hindra Sulaksono

Hindra Sulaksono

Manager, Southeast Asia Programs

Hindra’s professional background is in construction and civil engineering, and for the past 18 years has applied his project management experience working in humanitarian organisations. Before joining UnitingWorld he worked predominantly in community development and disaster management programs in rural and urban contexts across Indonesia. Hindra’s role at UnitingWorld has him managing poverty alleviation programs; health, nutrition and hygiene programs; refugee and displaced peoples programs, and emergency and disaster preparedness programs. Hindra loves working with a wide range of people and partners from different areas and cultures and hopes his role at UnitingWorld gives him broader experiences to help him provide better service and support.

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Daniel Buckingham

International Programs Manager

Daniel is International Programs Manager for UnitingWorld’s South Asia projects.

After developing a passion for peace and justice while working on the committee for Rural Australians for Refugees in Albury, Daniel left his small town to complete his Bachelor of Theology at Morling Theological College and then Masters of Peace and Conflict at the University of Sydney.

Through living overseas and working with UnitingWorld on projects in India and Sri Lanka, Daniel has developed a real appreciation for the stories and lived experience of all people – their cultural and religious expression, resilience, hopes, joys and even pain. These stories continually remind him that we are all part of this human community and are deserving of love, relationship and peace.

Aletia Dundas

Aletia Dundas

International Programs Manager

Aletia manages our partnership with the United Church in Papua New Guinea who are engaged in the third phase of 12-year-long Australian Aid funded Church Partnership Program as well as an innovative water and sanitation project in Milne Bay Province.

Aletia has qualifications in International Community Development and Peace and Conflict Studies. She has previously worked with partners across the Pacific, Asia, Africa, Indigenous Australia and recently spent three months as a Human Rights Monitor in Palestine and Israel for the World Council of Churches.

Ellen Shipley

Ellen Shipley

Compliance Manager

Ellen manages UnitingWorld’s compliance processes – ensuring we meet standards for the ACFID Code of Conduct and Australian Government accreditation.  She also works with staff across UnitingWorld to ensure the lessons we learn through our monitoring and evaluations are incorporated into our ongoing programs.

Ellen comes to UnitingWorld with extensive expertise in NGO programming and compliance through her work with the Australian Aid Program, including eight years as Director of the Community Partnership Section.  She has over 25 years’ experience in development, in Thailand, Laos, the Philippines and Papua New Guinea.

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Cath Taylor

Content Coordinator

Cath Taylor has been sharing UnitingWorld stories for six years with an eye to making everyday life among our partners come alive for supporters.  With degrees in communications, theology and teaching, she currently oversees our Lent Event program and writes for our major campaigns. She has worked with several denominations in pastoral ministry, school teaching, social justice/advocacy and comms. Cath is an absolutely typical wide-eyed wanderer with one husband, two daughters and three or more animal companions.  All this brings her great joy.

Marcus Campbell

Marcus Campbell

Communications Coordinator

Marcus coordinates UnitingWorld’s print, digital and social media, as well as advocacy and media relations. He has a background in human rights research and communications, with previous roles at the University of Sydney, Oxfam Australia and the Public Affairs unit of the United Nations Assistance to the Khmer Rouge Trials (UNAKRT) in Cambodia.

Marcus holds a Master of Human Rights from the University of Sydney and recently completed a thesis investigating the role of religion in peacebuilding and human rights monitoring in Papua and West Papua, Indonesia.

Outside of work, Marcus is a member of Leichhardt Uniting Church, tries to ride his bike as much as possible and tweets at @m_arcusc.

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Shasha Wang

Database Administrator

Shasha is the Database Administrator at UnitingWorld and leads the development and application of Salesforce-based systems.

She is responsible for UnitingWorld’s database of supporters, partners and projects. This involves maintaining data integrity and donor privacy while running sophisticated end-to-end programs for UnitingWorld’s communications.

Shasha has more than eight years experience working in CRM software and Salesforce programs. Her wide technical expertise is highly regarded in this field.

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Nicolas Duran

Donor Relations Manager

Nicolas joined UnitingWorld in 2020 as Donor Relations Manager. He works alongside the Australian Partnership Team members and major donors to share stories of our partners and projects.

He was born in Colombia and came to Australia with his wife and son in 2016. Since arriving they added another baby boy to the family in late 2018. He holds two master’s degrees that he completed in France: one in Human Rights and Humanitarian Law and one in International Cooperation and Development. He also holds a bachelor’s degree in Finance and International Relations.

Nicolas previously worked in the not-for-profit and government sectors (human rights, fundraising, partnerships and aid development) while he was living in Colombia.

He loves the beach, (his favorite is in Balmoral), enjoys travelling, discovering new cultures, going to concerts, dancing, and trying international cuisines.

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Mardi Lumsden

Australian Partnerships Coordinator (QLD/NSW)

Mardi joined UnitingWorld’s Australian Partnerships Team in 2018. She previously worked in communications and marketing with the Uniting Church in Queensland, including seven years as Director of Communications.

In her UnitingWorld role, Mardi works with Australian donors and churches to share the stories of the amazing work of our oversees partner churches and the life-changing partnerships made possible through UnitingWorld. She also works closely with UnitingWorld’s ambassadors around Australia. Based in Brisbane, Mardi is available to speak at services and events around the country (contact us at info@unitingworld.org.au).

In her spare time, Mardi is a musician and has had music featured in Australian TV shows including Dance Academy and Winners and Losers.

Howard Clark

Howard Clark

Volunteer Ambassador

Howard is a Volunteer Ambassador with UnitingWorld and in speaking to Churches and groups he helps to make connections for change.

Howard was a Science teacher with the NSW Department of Education and later moved to teaching Religious Education at Newington College and then Pymble Ladies’ College.  More recently, he was relieving Chaplain at MLC School Burwood.

Howard enjoys music and sings with Macquarie Singers.  He has written textbooks for High School Science and Religion courses.  He believes that an important aspect of UnitingWorld is that in providing the programs around the world the uniqueness of each individual human and their importance as the created image of God is acknowledged.

Lin Hatfield Dodds

Lin Hatfield Dodds

Chair of the Board

Lin is currently the CEO of The Benevolent Society. Her previous roles include Deputy Secretary in the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, Associate Dean in the Australian and New Zealand School of Government and 15 years as National Director of UnitingCare Australia amongst many other senior NGO positions.

She in an active member of the Uniting Church, holds a Masters degree in applied psychology, is a member of the Australia Institute of Company Directors, and was ACT Australian of the Year in 2008.

Lin has worked as a counselling psychologist with families and young people, serves on the board of Better Evaluation and mentors emerging women leaders.

Colleen Geyer

Colleen Geyer

General Secretary of the UCA National Assembly – Ex-Officio Board Member

Colleen is the General Secretary of the National Assembly, the national council of the Uniting Church of Australia.

She has held a range of significant positions at a state and national level of the Uniting Church, including Director of Mission at UnitingCare Queensland, Director of Mission at BlueCare, Associate Director at UnitingCare Australia, Registrar of Coolamon College and National Consultant for the Assembly Gospel and Gender Unit.

Colleen’s work for the Uniting Church and its agencies since 1995 has deepened her sense of call to the role of General Secretary, while embracing the uniqueness of the Uniting Church as an authentic movement of God.

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Dr Sureka Goringe

National Director of UnitingWorld – Ex-Officio Board Member

Sureka became National Director in July 2017. Sureka brings executive and board level leadership experience from fifteen years in the technology sector, ranging from venture funded start-ups to large public-sector organisations. Sureka has also served as Chair of the National Committee for UnitingWorld Relief & Development (the board), and as organiser of the first UnitingWomen national conference.

An Australian since the nineties, Sureka comes via university in England, and a childhood in Botswana, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. Sureka has Ph.D. in Materials Science, is a Graduate Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, is the wife of a UCA minister, and the mother of two kids and a dog.

James Batley

James Batley

Board Member and Chair of the Finance, Audit and Risk Committee

James has over 30 years’ experience in international diplomacy and development including positions such as Deputy Secretary of DFAT; Deputy Director-General of AusAID; Australian High Commissioner to Fiji (and Permanent Representative to the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat); Australian High Commissioner to Solomon Islands; Special Coordinator of the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (RAMSI); Australian Ambassador to East Timor; as well as diplomatic positions in Beirut, Lebanon; Jakarta, Indonesia; Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea; and Port Vila, Vanuatu. He graduated from the University of Sydney in 1982 and was awarded the Public Service Medal in 2002. He currently works as a private consultant.

John Manning

John Manning

Board Member

John is Managing Director and Equity Partner of Dewings Pty. Ltd, Adelaide, a firm of Chartered Accountants. He has been employed by that organisation for a number of years including as HR Manager and Practice Manager. From 2000 to 2002 he undertook theological study at Morling College in Sydney, graduating with a Bachelor of Ministries and has subsequently completed a Master of Divinity through the Australian College of Theology.

Ashleigh Johnson

Ashleigh Johnson

Board Member

Ashleigh has over a decade of experience in the technology industry, holding leadership roles both locally and internationally. She has a background in digital strategy and marketing, with a focus on growth through digital transformation and equipping teams to thrive with changing technology. Ashleigh is a mentor to emerging leaders from under-represented minorities and is a founding member of Pride@SAP Singapore, an employee network group championing equality. She holds a Bachelor of Communication and Media Studies.

Andrew Johnson

Board Member and Chair of the International Programs Committee

Andrew is a consultant with the Social Economy Group. He is a values-driven leader with clients spanning international development, and community and religious  organisations. His key areas of expertise include strategy, governance, government relations and public affairs. Prior to that he worked for World Vision for seven years in various roles, most recently as Director of Strategy.

He is also an active member of the Uniting Church, having served in many leadership roles, including as a member of the Assembly Standing Committee for twelve years.

Andrew holds a Bachelor of Laws (International & Human Rights Law), Bachelor of Science (Computer Science), Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice, and Graduate Diploma of Theology

Warren Tapp

Warren Tapp

Board Member

Warren joined the Board of UnitingWorld in 2020 and brings extensive governance experience to this role. He has consulted to the Uniting Church in Australia Queensland Synod over many years and has been an active UCA member. He has been a Chair or Director on over two dozen Boards and has lectured and published books on governance. He is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and conducts governance workshops for the World Bank in the South Pacific and Southeast Asia. He has much interest in the work that UnitingWorld does in these regions and is keen to contribute to the role of the Board.

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Renee O'Shanassy

Board Member

Renee joined the UnitingWorld board in 2019. She first engaged with UnitingWorld as a UnitingWorld-supported Australian Youth Ambassador for Development in 2010 and then joined the Sydney office as an intern. Her upbringing in the Uniting Church leads her passion for social justice and the protection of human rights and dignity for all.

Renee holds a Masters of Public Policy and Management from Monash University and Bachelors of Laws and International Relations from La Trobe University. She is currently undertaking a Masters in Arts (Women’s Studies) with Flinders University and is currently collaborating with feminist academics on a series of projects.

Renee has worked with the UNDP, various agencies of the Australian Public Service, development organisations and academia.  She works in public policy, with a strong interest and experience in gender, development, and international relations.