Meet the Board of Directors

Sarah Neill

Board Chair & State Commissioner

Sarah Neill was appointed to the role of State Commissioner, Girl Guides NSW & ACT, in May 2016. Having been involved in Guiding for many years across a range of roles, prior to being State Commissioner, Sarah held the role of Region Manager, South Coast and Highlands Region, for three years. Sarah also represented the Region Management team on the Girl Guides NSW & ACT Membership Management Committee; has previously been a member of the Girl Guides NSW & ACT Finance Management Committee; various Region and District Committees; and previously undertook District Manager, Learning Partner and Support Group roles.

In addition to Guiding, Sarah has spent over 20 years leading Volunteers in a range of Organisations and Community Groups, as well as running her own business and maintaining a career in accountancy.

Sarah is committed to ensuring that our membership is actively engaged and supported in achieving our 2015–2020 Strategic Plan. Through her many roles and her time in Guiding, Sarah has continuously demonstrated diverse leadership skills and experience at local, regional and state levels. Sarah is absolutely dedicated to the mission of Guiding and wherever possible personally strives to develop, support and mentor young women in achieving their absolute best.

David van Gogh

Acting State Treasurer

David uses his corporate and risk experience to contribute to the Board’s important role in driving the empowerment of girls. He supports the Guiding model of developing leadership skills in girls through skills-based education and active community participation.

David leads Amstelveen, a specialist team of governance, risk, compliance and assurance professionals. He has 15 years of corporate experience spanning risk advisory, internal audit, corporate governance, and major technology and business change projects.

David is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and has qualifications in Business Law and Technology. He was previously a Director in Deloitte’s Risk Advisory practice and has served as a Lieutenant in the Australian Army Reserve. He contributes to public policy, including on the importance of encouraging girls to undertake STEM studies.

Helen White

Chief Executive Officer

Helen joined Girl Guides NSW & ACT as the CEO for Girl Guides NSW & ACT at the beginning of 2017. Helen is passionate about improving member and volunteer  engagement and value, and developing member satisfaction and growth. She also has experience in developing events both large and small.
"I really believe in the mission of Girl Guides to empower girls and young women and I am looking forward to working with staff, volunteers, girls and their parents to further develop Girl Guides in NSW and ACT," says Helen. "I am also looking forward to getting out into the Guiding community and meeting volunteers and Guides."
Helen, originally from the UK, was a Guide herself. In her spare time she enjoys taking in the arts and the outdoors, and has a particular fondness for skiing and camping.


Lizzie Canon

Elected Director

Lizzie Cannon was appointed to the Board as an Elected Director in 2018. Lizzie grew up as a Brownie, Guide and Young Leader, attending an International Jamboree, and achieving her Baden Powell Award in England. On settling in Australia, Lizzie led Junior Guides in Chatswood, and later initiated the reopening of Harbord Freshwater Girl Guides, and was involved in rebuilding the District after a decade dormant. Lizzie is the Senior Director Finance for a leading medical technology company and has extensive leadership, finance and strategy experience. As a mum of two young girls Lizzie is passionate about giving them and other girls the opportunities she received growing up with Guiding.

Krista-Lee Fogarty

Co-opted Director

Krista is a srategic, innovative and results driven General Manager of Risk at Graincorp with an extensive background in global Health, Safety, Environment and Quality (HSEQ) strategy development and transformational leadership  across the renewable energy, construction, infrastructure, industrial, and property industries. Strong leadership capability with a solid track record in safety differently, behavioral based safety, leading safety in design, managing strategic safety initiatives, empowering and leading teams, management and stakeholders to drive the HSEQ agenda and achieve results through a hands on and commercially savvy approach. In-depth knowledge and passion in HSEQ with nearly 20 years’ experience coupled with appropriate qualifications, legislative expertise, high-risk environment exposure, commercial acumen and drive to build HSEQ strategy from the ground up and succeed on an international spectrum. 


Elected Director

As an adult Member and volunteer Sonja offers her time and passion for the Association to the emerging generation of Guides and give back to a movement that provided her with so many opportunities for development, adventure, friendship and joy in her youth. 

Sonja wants to ensure other young women and girls could have the same opportunities.

As a Lawyer, Sonja has developed knowledge and experience in industrial relations, property law and management; knowledge and experience that she applies in her role as Board Director.

Kath Follers

Elected Director

Kath has been a Qualified Leader in a variety of Guiding roles for over 38 years, joining Girl Guides as a Leader of Youth when her daughters joined the movement. Currently a Resource Leader for Northern Sydney Region and NSW & ACT Outdoors Trainer and Boating Instructor. Kath has held a number of management roles, and has attended most NSW & ACT and Australian Jamborees. 

Kath was Contingent Leader for the Australian Senior Guide contingent to Guelph in Ontario Canada, has attended a number of events for older Guides around Australia, and regularly attends the State Regatta, acting as Leader in Charge of Boating and the safety boat driver for the event.

A valued member of the State Water Activities Centre, RTS Tingira, Committee, Kath's obvious passion is the outdoors, in particular boating, although she is also a proficient camper. She has mentored many youth members and leaders in her various roles and, as an active member of the Learning and Development Committee, is involved with training outdoor skills in various locations throughout NSW & ACT.

Lauren Hansen

Elected Director

Lauren has been a member of Girl Guides for over 21 years and is currently an Olave member and Senior Guide Leader.  She holds the Queens Guide and Banksia Award and was a committee member of the Olave Program state committee for 6 years, and has led international contingents to Norway and Iceland.
Lauren is passionate about the outdoors and holds a Certificate III in Outdoor Recreation, which she uses to run workshops for Scouts and Guides in Canyoning, Caving and abseiling.  She is an Exercise Physiologist who specialises in working with people with disabilities.  

Shauna Jarrett


Company Secretary

Shauna was appointed Company Secretary in July 2018.  Shauna has extensive experience in advising not-for-profit (NFP) organisations about their bespoke legal and governance responsibilities.  Shauna has over 20 years’ experience as Chair, Board member and consultant to a range of charities and NFP, including the Public Interest Advocacy Centre, the NSW Law Society Council, Seton Villa, Arts Law Centre of Australia, Australian Museum and Force Majeure Dance company.  

Michelle Kothe

Elected Director

Michelle has a long history of involvement with Girl Guides and the movement's principles and cites Girl Guides as the source of skills, support and leadership opportunities that she has been able to use to help herself and the community. 

Michelle's interest in serving on Girl Guides NSW & ACT Board of Directors stems from her passion for working with girls, youth and the community for social change. Over the last two decades Michelle has built and refined a wide range of skills including success as a business women, sitting on a commercial board, and frontline and management positions with community focused oorganisations in the non-profit sector.  

Michelle proudlys draws on her broad expereicence and privides valualble regional representation in her role as Board Director. 

Karen Lui

Co-opted Director

Karen Lui is a Tax professional with over 20 years experience in the field, specialising in Tax Risk Management and Governance. She is a Chartered Tax Advisor with the Taxation Institute of Australia, a Chartered Accountant and a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. 

Karen has a number of Board roles with children-related Not for Profits, she is the State Treasurer and Board member for Girl Guides NSW & ACT also Vice Chairperson for Playgroup NSW. 


Emily Milton Smith

Elected Director

Emily works in the not-for-profit sector  coordinating impact initiatives for youth education programmes. She also consults with various community organisations across the Pacific, Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean, advising and mentoring young leaders on their impact, innovation and youth engagement initiatives. A certified Executive Coach by the University of Cambridge, Emily is passionate about supporting talent and organisational development by boosting leadership capacity. 

Emily was named in the inaugural list of Queen’s Young Leaders award winners and was instrumental in initiating the Queen’s Young Leaders Legacy Panel. 
An Associate Fellow of the Royal Commonwealth Society, Emily advises on the youth engagement and innovation strategies in Australia. 

In 2008, Emily was presented with a certificate for service to the community alongside a medallion by the Order of Australia, in addition to being named Young Citizen of the Year in her local government area.

Joanne Muller

Elected Director

Joanne has been a member of Girl Guides for over 50 years and holds the Queen's Guide and Emu Awards. During this time she has fulfilled the roles of Leader, District Manager, Deputy State Commissioner, Honorary Legal Advisor as well as serving on a number of board sub committees for both Girl Guides NSW & ACT and Girl Guides Australia.

With formal qualifications in teaching and law Joanne has 25 years’ experience in the regulation of health practitioners and is currently a member of the following: Psychology Board of Australia, the Nursing and Midwifery Council of NSW, St Johns Ambulance NSW, Southern Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust, Royal Academy of Dance London – Development and Fundraising Committee and the Radiation Advisory Council of NSW.

Lisa Walters

Elected Director

A senior executive Lisa is a graduate of the Australian Company Directors Course, Lisa has demonstrated financial management and reporting skills with a strong background in reporting and decision support at a Board level. 
She possesses strong operational cross functional knowledge including Finance, Information Technology, Human Resources and Sales and Marketing and has proven business development capabilities including the strategy development and implementation.
Lisa brings a fresh and modern perspective to Guiding.  She has extensive corporate and not for profit experience which, combined with her Guiding experience and “can do” attitude means she truly understands the needs of Guiding.


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