A team with heart & drive



Brett Williamson OAM

Brett was Chief Executive Officer of Volunteering Australia (VA) from October 2013 until December 2016. Prior to that, he was CEO of Surf Life Saving Australia (SLSA) for 6 years.

Brett holds tertiary qualifications in the areas of human movement studies (BHMS Ed) from the University of Queensland, in education (B Ed) from the Brisbane College of Advanced Education (Queensland University of Technology) and a Corporate Directors Diploma from the University of New England. Brett was a sport and physical education teacher for several years prior to beginning his professional involvement with Surf Life Saving in 1984, when he started in the dual role of State Development Officer and State Director of Coaching. He moved on to the roles of Deputy Administrator, State Manager and General Manager before being appointed as CEO of Surf Life Saving Queensland in 1991 and CEO of Surf Life Saving Australia in 2006.

As VA’s Chief Executive Officer, Brett was primarily responsible for ensuring the effective development, management and sustainability of the organisation and its vital services and outputs.

The unique and diverse nature of VA’s operations required Brett’s extensive engagement with government and industry on volunteering and not for profit issues.

He has had articles published in the Medical Journal of Australia and the Australian Journal of Emergency Management and has been a regular presenter at conferences and seminars on topics including Surf Life Saving, association management, risk management, emergency services, sport and visitor/tourist safety.

Brett has been a volunteer member of SLSA for over 40 years after starting his involvement as a ‘nipper’ in 1967 and is a highly credentialed surf lifesaver from his 20 years of active patrolling service. He has also been a coach, instructor, examiner and filled responsible volunteer positions on Club and Branch committees prior to being employed by SLS. Brett has been awarded an International Training Officer Certificate and a ‘Citation of Merit’ from the International Life Saving Federation. He is a Life Member of Maroochydore SLSC on the Sunshine Coast and Surf Lifesaving Queensland.

Brett is a former President of the Australian Society of Sports Administrators (Qld Chapter) and has sat on a wide range of State and Commonwealth government and non-government advisory and consultative groups. He is a Fellow member of the Corporate Directors’ Association of Australia, the Australian Institute of Management and the Australian Society of Sports Administrators. He also holds membership of several professional associations, including the Australian Marketing Institute (AMI), Australian & New Zealand Sports Law Association (ANZSLA), Corporate Directors Association and the Australian Institute of Emergency Services.

Brett has received the following civil honours:

  • 2004: Order of Australia Medal (OAM)
  • 2003: Australian Centenary Medal
  • 2003: Judges Special Award – EQT Not-For-Profits CEO Awards
  • 2000: Australian Sports Medal
  • 1996: Queensland Father of the Year
  • 1995: Queensland Sport Administrator of the Year

Vice President

Brett Johnson

Brett has worked in numerous roles spanning the community services (not-for-profit) sector, from residential youth services to large NGOs and peak bodies.  

Most recently he has worked in various capacities, both for the Queensland Government and as a representative for the local government sector, undertaking multiple projects across a number of social policy areas.

Brett has a strong passion for social justice and aspires to work in developing a greater appreciation for community wellbeing programs and initiatives. Brett has been a member of several external reference committees undertaking research and developmental projects. He has previously been a member on the Anti-Poverty Week Advisory Committee.

Brett is currently the Principal Advisor, Community Policy and Strategy Development with the Local Government Association of Queensland. He is currently supporting councils and undertaking research surrounding the Queensland Government’s social services reform program, housing and homelessness re-alignment, renewal of youth services, and numerous local government social and community planning strategies and policy advisory pieces.

Brett has a bachelor’s degree in Communications, majoring in Public Relations and Journalism and diploma level tertiary qualifications in Project Management and Community Services. He has been employed with LGAQ for the past four years to assist in supporting councils to deliver excellence in community services.

Treasurer and Secretary

Julie-Anne Mee

Having developed a background in accounting administration and business solutions, Julie-Anne Mee is a qualified accountant who has held senior operational positions in large and small commercial and non-profit organisations as well as spending some time in the public sector over the last 30 years.

In early 2006, Julie-Anne commenced working with the Australian Centre of Philanthropy and Non-profit Studies in the rollout of the Standard Chart of Accounts project in Queensland. Julie-Anne has continued in this project for all other Australian jurisdictions with the National Standard Chart of Accounts (NSCOA) transferred to the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profit Commission (ACNC) mid-2013. 

Julie-Anne also undertakes a number of teaching and learning projects within the QUT School of Accountancy including the feasibility of new units, the development of materials, tutoring and lecturing in accounting units and the unit coordination for work placement.

Julie-Anne has held a number of voluntary and paid positions in nonprofits and has a particular interest in education and training of volunteers and understanding the responsibilities of volunteers and employees in ongoing organisational sustainability. She:

  • is an elected Board member of Volunteering Queensland; Vice President from 2013
  • is a councillor at the University of the Sunshine Coast since 2002; and chaired the Audit and Risk Committee
  • is a Director and Company Secretary of the Innovation Centre Sunshine Coast Board Pty Ltd since 2010
  • is the Chair of the Audit and Risk Committee of St Vincent de Paul Queensland (member since 2009 and Chair since 2011)
  • is a Fellow of CPA Australia, having held numerous positions including 1995-96 Queensland Divisional President and 1998-99 National Vice President Professional Development; and was a member of the CPA National Disciplinary Panel (to March 2011)
  • was CPA Australia's representative on QUT's School of Accounting Advisory Committee between 1999 and 2012
  • was the Accounting Specialist on the Australian Council for International Development's (ACFID) Code of Conduct Committee from 2008 to 2013.

In her spare time Julie-Anne likes to relax with her husband at their orchard at Mt Mee.

Board Directors

Natasha Doherty

Natasha is a partner with Deloitte Access Economics and leader of Deloitte’s policy and program evaluation practice. She works across the public sector, predominately in health and social policy.

Natasha is passionate about evidence based policy and practice and has led a number of evaluations for Commonwealth and state based reforms across health, community services, funding reform and the innovation agenda.

Prior to joining Deloitte, Natasha had 10 years’ experience in government industry development and reform including in health, economics, creative industries, investment, modelling, emerging industries and SME development. Natasha has worked on a variety of evaluations and reviews of state based reforms and initiatives, using qualitative and quantitative analysis, process, impact and outcome evaluation. She was involved in the development of Demand and Supply models for the Health workforce.

Natasha is an advocate for good governance, operational and workforce practices in the not-for-profit industry as well as a strong supporter of productive, respectful partnerships and collaborations between the private, government and community sectors. She promotes corporate engagement with community through giving programs such as corporate volunteering and the nurturing of the skills and development of staff through initiatives such as employee volunteering.

Damien Edmonds

During his 20-year career, Damien has launched and managed a range of successful brands and businesses in Australia and the UK, holding senior marketing and business development positions.

He helped to launch the successful Men’s Health magazine into the Australian market and most recently was part of the marketing team that introduced the go via brand and free-flow tolling to South-East Queensland.

Damien’s extensive experience of working within the media industry – for Eye Corp, Dentsu, Nielsen Media Research and Zenith Media Worldwide – has enabled him to develop a strong customer orientation. With his dual marketing and business development experience, Damien is passionate about combining marketing and business development strategies to improve an organisation’s performance, in particular strategic visioning for change.

Aside from being a director at Edmonds Marketing, Damien is a certified practicing facilitator with Australian Institute of Management (Qld) and a fellow and chartered marketer with the Australian Marketing Institute and Chartered Institute of Marketing (UK).

His qualifications include degrees in Marketing, Economics and Advertising, and a post graduate certificate in Business, Technology and Change.

Damien is also proud to be a third generation marketing business owner, following in the footsteps of his uncle, as well as grandfather who established Edmonds Advertising in Brisbane 40 years ago.

Jane Hedger

Jane has a strong background in change management, communication, and organisational, workforce and leadership and transformation. Her extensive experience spans across both government and the not-for-profit sector.

Having spent ten years teaching, Jane joined the Queensland Government in 1997. She has since held senior executive positions in Corporate Services, Media & Communications, Customer Experience, Information Technology and Organisational Change across a number of Government departments. In addition her consultancy Hedger & Co, works with not for profit organisations and their boards on governance, strategy and workforce redesign across Australia and New Zealand.

An experienced board member, Jane has a long history of community service and is committed to improving diversity and inclusion. Jane recently travelled to The Netherlands to complete studies in Futurism, and has a strong interest in digital disruption, workforce agility and organisational future-proofing.

She believes that volunteering is about giving back to our community in a meaningful and useful manner, and taking the time and skills that we have to assist others who are in need in a way that is respectful and empowering of the people and organisations.