Matt Ruchel, Executive Director

Matt has worked in non-government environmental policy areas in the state, national and international arena for more than 30 years. He's held senior positions in leading international and national conservation organisations and local Victorian government. His exceptional strategic planning skills and experience is invaluable in coordinating staff and campaigns, as well as liaising with government, industry and a range of interest groups.

(03) 9341 6500
Caitlin Griffith, Community Learning and Engagement Manager

Caitlin oversees our community learning and engagement programs including ReefWatch, NatureWatch, Wild Families, Bushwalking, NextGen Nature and Nature Stewards. Trained in ecology, conservation, social ecology and community development, she loves experiencing and learning about nature with others. Caitlin can recall closely observing backyard ants and other wildlife from a young age and can now often be found admiring local bird life, fungi or wildflowers or rambling in a rockpool.

(03) 9341 6500
Jane Crouch, Fundraising Manager

Jane oversees bringing in the support and donations that empower us to do our important work. She has had over 20 years of fundraising experience with international development, health and environment not-for-profits. Travel on all continents, plus work in outdoor education, energy conservation and adventure travel, has given Jane global perspectives. But now she’s very happy to ‘act local’ and bring her diverse experience to protecting the magnificent natural beauty of her home state.

(03) 9341 6500
Brendan Kelly FCPA, Finance & Operations Manager

Brendan oversees the Finances and office Operations. He has over 40 years’ experience in Finance and IT and has spent the last 8 years working in the non-profit sector. From an early age Brendan was involved with the Field Naturalists, and continues to enjoys bush walking and camping in our excellent national parks. He spends a lot of time down at Wilsons Prom and loves to get into the waves on his boogie board with his two kids.

(03) 9341 6503
Jessie Borrelle, Digital Engagement and Communications Manager

Jessie's passion is helping nature-lovers get involved in protecting, restoring and advocating for Victoria's incredible natural heritage. She has a comprehensive background in campaigns, communications and community engagement. Unsurprisingly, she has a thing for trees, birds, fungi – actually all of it.

(03) 9341 6500
Adrian Marshall, Facilitator, Grassy Plains Network

Adrian campaigns for the protection of our critically endangered grasslands, with an emphasis on the Western Grassland Reserve and grasslands impacted by Melbourne’s urbanisation. He has a Masters in landscape architecture and a PhD in urban ecology, and strongly advocates for the reimagining of cities to support urban ecosystems for resilience and sustainability. His position as Grassy Plains Network facilitator is hosted by Victorian National Parks Association.

(03) 9341 6500
Blake Nisbet, Nature Conservation Campaigner

Blake’s work primarily focuses on the protection of Victoria’s forests and woodlands. He is extremely passionate about the conservation of threatened wildlife. Blake has been conducting on-ground surveys in Victoria’s forests for nearly 10 years, working hard to protect habitat for endangered animals, such as the Leadbeater’s Possum and Greater Glider. He has even defended Victoria’s forests in the Supreme Court.

(03) 9341 6500
Jordan Crook, Parks and Nature Campaigner

Jordan's work focuses on protecting and caring for our wildlife and natural 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 teaches conservation and land management at a tertiary level and has an academic background in conservation and land management, arboriculture and training and assessment.

(03) 9341 6500
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 us, Shannon worked as a campaigner protecting the Great Barrier Reef, and had several roles at Parks Victoria.

(03) 9341 6515
Ben Gill, Nature Conservation Campaigner

Ben’s inability to stand by and let a problem go unsolved has led to a diverse career including in the film industry, improving worker conditions as well as, soil health and protecting nature. He leverages his networks, strategic collaboration, and investigation skills to bring together community groups, government organisations and others to campaign for Victoria’s forests.

(03) 9341 6500
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
Sera Blair, NatureWatch Coordinator

As a 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 community attitudes towards a range of issues in threatened wildlife conservation.

(03) 9341 6510
Jacob L’Huillier Lunt, Digital Campaign Producer

A design theory nerd through and through, Jacob works on our digital campaigns and communications. Jacob likes to utilise a combination of his Bachelor in Philosophy, his Masters in Communication and Design and his passion for the natural world to reach unique and thorough design solutions.

(03) 9341 6500
Meghan Lindsay, Community Learning and Communications Officer

Meghan works on our community learning and engagement programs. She is passionate about engaging people with nature. She has a background in conservation and natural resource management and has completed a Bachelor of Environmental Science (Honours) and a Graduate Diploma in Environmental Law.

(03) 9341 6500
Consuelo Quevedo, NextGen Nature Program Coordinator

Consuelo has had a deep connection with the natural environment from a very young age. Driven by curiosity and a desire to spend more time outdoors, she studied for a bachelor's plus an honours degree in conservation biology in Chile. She came to Australia to further her knowledge and skills and recently completed a Masters in Environment at the University of Melbourne. Consuelo loves being in the forest and the sea and is enthusiastic about conserving biodiversity and sharing nature with others.

(03) 9341 6500
Lucy Permezel, Office Coordinator

Lucy’s experience across a range of roles in both the hospitality and non-profit sectors makes her well-placed as the first point of contact for members and supporters. Her organisational and problem-solving skills are utilised daily to enhance our work. Lucy loves getting out into nature, hiking and running along the trails in the Dandenong Ranges, and Falls Creek over the summer months.

(03) 9341 6500
Kristian Lang, Philanthropy Executive

Kristian's work in fundraising helps support and grow our community so we can continue our important work protecting nature. With a long-term commitment to tackling the climate and nature crisis we are facing, Kristian has previously worked in the renewable energy industry and environmental philanthropy. He loves hearing people’s stories and finding out about their connection with nature – something there is no shortage of at VNPA.

(03) 9341 6500
Paul Clifton, Publications Coordinator

Paul looks after all of our publications, including Park Watch, as well as contributing to campaigns and marketing. His background is in publications design, cartography, graphic design and editorial management in a broad range of industries: unions, travel, community festivals, arts industry and small business. His happy place is the beaches of the Great Ocean Road and the cool temperate rainforests of the Great Otway National Park.

(03) 9341 6500
Matt Small, Fundraising Executive

Curiosity about people and nature led Matt to travel extensively through Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America. These experiences reinforced his belief that we need to do everything in our power to protect the nature that sustains us. Matt brings over twenty years of fundraising experience and a passion for empowering people to protect nature. He is a Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE) and winner of a Fundraising Institute of Australia award for innovation.

03 9341 6505
Michelle Klaric, Accountant

Michelle is the custodian of all things financial. With a background in financial and commercial roles across a wide range of sectors, including non-profit, her experience in financial management, budgeting and reporting supports the work of all our staff and members to protect our natural environment.

(03) 9341 6500
Dr Maddy Willcock, Nature Stewards Coordinator

Maddy runs the Nature Stewards program. These community programs introduce participants to the wonderful and varied Victorian and local environment, offer a chance to meet like-minded people, and find out ways to help nature at home and locally through environmental volunteering. Maddy has continued to explore and learn in nature through her career spanning geological field research, STEM education program development, land management, and anthroposophical art therapy.

(03) 9341 6500