Matt Ruchel, Executive Director

Matt has been Executive Director of the VNPA since 2007 and has a strong background in environmental policy. He has worked in the non-government environmental policy areas in the state, national and international arena for more than 30 years.

Matt has held senior positions in leading international and national conservation organisations and in local government. He brings exceptional strategic planning skills to his role at VNPA and his experience is invaluable in coordinating staff and campaigns, as well as liaising with government and industry at all levels and a range of interest groups.

(03) 9341 6500
Phil Ingamells, Park Protection

Phil runs the VNPA's Park Protection Project, aimed at radically improving management of Victoria's national parks and reserves, particularly in the face of climate change. He has a special interest in environmental education, and national park management issues.

03 9341 6506
Shannon Hurley, Nature Conservation Campaigner

Shannon's work focuses on protecting marine and coastal areas, as well as other land-focussed campaigns. Shannon loves getting out into the field visiting areas that need greater protection and working with local community groups.

Prior to joining the VNPA, Shannon has worked as a campaigner protecting the Great Barrier Reef, and has also had several roles at Parks Victoria.

(03) 9341 6515
Jordan Crook , Nature Conservation Campaigner

Jordan work focuses on VNPA's campaigns to protect and care for our wildlife and wild places.

His background in conservation work ranges from the ocean to the tall forest of the Central Highlands, and he has worked with all levels of government to get results for the natural world for many years. Jordan also teaches conservation and land management at a tertiary level part-time and has an academic background in conservation and land management, arboriculture and training and assessment.

(03) 9341 6512
John Kotsiaris, Nature Conservation Campaigner

John is supporting the VNPA’s campaigns for better management of Victoria’s natural heritage, particularly focusing around fire policy and fire ecology.

He has been a VNPA volunteer and a Conservation Committee member for a number of years. He has a tertiary education in conservation biology, ecology and public policy. John's interests include threatened species and entomology, and he believes that a strong connection with the land is good for nature and the nation.

(03) 9341 6513
Caitlin Griffith, Community Education and Engagement Manager

Running community days, supporting our NatureWatch program and developing training opportunities for staff and volunteers are just some of the ways Caitlin is helping to improve the way we share nature with others.

She has worked with numerous local Victorian community groups, land managers and scientists in the development of citizen science projects, and brings with her a deep passion for ecology, conservation, social ecology and community development.

(03) 9341 6508
Sera Blair, NatureWatch Coordinator

Sera leads our land-based citizen science program NatureWatch. She has an extensive background in threatened species conservation and community-led projects. Sera has also completed a PhD investigating communication attitudes towards a range of issues in threatened species conservation in Victoria.

(03) 9341 6510
Kade Mills, ReefWatch Coordinator

Kade has worked as a marine scientist throughout Australia and now focuses on working with Victoria's marine community and their input that can have an amazing impact on advancing our knowledge of the underwater world.

(03) 9341 6519
Nicole Mertens, ReefWatch Project Officer

Nicole runs our marine citizen science programs and has a PhD in marine ecology. Nicole sees citizen science as a valuable tool not just for plugging gaps in knowledge of Victoria's marine life, but for creating a connection to nature and a desire to protect it.

(03) 9341 6509
Meg Sobey, Publications and Online Coordinator

Meg joined us in 2017 to oversee our communications, including our website, emails and social media. She is also the editor of Park Watch magazine. Meg loves using creative ways to encourage connection with and care for our natural world.

(03) 9341 6500
Emily Clough, Fundraising Manager

Emily engages with our dedicated supporters including individuals, trusts and foundations. She finds using her skills to contribute to the protection of Victoria's amazing natural places extremely rewarding.

(03) 9341 6501
Amelia Easdale, Supporter Development

Amelia works with those generous individuals and organisations that support our work. She is proud to contribute to the conservation of Victoria's unique native plants and wildlife and the habitats they rely on through her work with the Victorian National Parks Association and our supporters.

(03) 9341 6505
Heath Rickard, Finance & Operations Manager

Heath oversees the day to day management of the organisation including finances, human resources for volunteers & staff, operations, office management, risk and IT. He has over 25 years experience in finance, IT and administration across all sectors with recent roles focusing on community grants management.

(03) 9341 6503
Charlotte Kandelaars, Administrative Officer

Charlotte handles the processing of memberships, appeals and book orders. She also handles the accounts receivables and payables. She finds it a privilege to be involved with such a proactive environmental organisation in line with her own values and interests.

(03) 9341 6514
Emily Cork, Administrative Assistant

Emily assists with reception and the administration of supporter data. She is delighted to be a part of such an incredible environmental organisation while finishing off her degree at RMIT University.