This year ACFID has a number of exciting speakers, ranging from international keynotes to Australian-based experts across multiple sectors.

Master of Ceremonies

Sam Mostyn Portrait

Sam Mostyn

Sam Mostyn is a non-executive director and sustainability adviser and speaker. Her current board roles include Mirvac, Transurban and Virgin Australia. She is the Chair of Citi Australia.

Her corporate roles have encompassed human resources and culture change, corporate and government affairs, community engagement and corporate sustainability. Sam is legally trained, and worked as a policy advisor to then Prime Minister Paul Keating, before joining the corporate world.

Her senior executive roles were with Optus Communications, Cable & Wireless plc, and Insurance Australia Group. Sam has served on the boards of Reconciliation Australia, the Australian Museum, the Sydney Theatre Company and now chairs Carriageworks and is President of the Australian Council for International Development. She was an inaugural commissioner with the National Mental Health Commission, and served on the National Sustainability Council. In 2016 Sam was appointed to the Global Business Commission on Sustainable Development, and has been a faculty member of the Cambridge Business Sustainability Program since 2012. She is the Deputy Chair of the Diversity Council of Australia, and in 2005 was the first woman appointed to the AFL Commission, and she continues to advocate for the Respect & Responsibility Policy for the inclusion of women at all levels of the AFL and sports industries.




Nandini Deo Portrait

Nandini Deo

Nandini Deo is an Associate Professor in the department of Political Science at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania, USA.

Her research on civil society points to the way that the world of social movement activists and NGOs is one that is shaped by power inequalities and financial clout.

Deo’s first book The Politics of Collective Advocacy in India was co-authored with Duncan McDuie Ra. They argued that NGOs face challenges as well as opportunities as they engage issue networks nationally and transnationally.

Her second book, Mobilizing Religion and Gender in India: The role of activism compares the rise and fall of women’s movements and religious nationalism as an outcome of activist strategies as they responded to changing political structures.

Her next book project is an edited volume on postsecular feminism. Currently, she is conducting a study of how the 2013 Companies Act is shaping corporate philanthropy in partnership with NGOs in India.

Deo teaches courses on social movements, comparative politics, and political theory.
She is originally from India and resides in Philadelphia.


Noelene Portrait

Noelene Nabulivou

Noelene Nabulivou is the Political Adviser to Diverse Voices and Action (DIVA) for Equality in Fiji She is a grassroots educator, feminist researcher, activist and social organiser in Fiji and the Pacific. Noelene has worked for over 30 years to strongly affirm and protect universal human rights, and advance Pacific led transformative approaches to sexual rights, gender, social, economic, ecological and climate justice – building and sharing knowledge, experience and skills in local, national, regional, economic south and global spaces. DIVA concentrates its work in urban poor communities, rural and remote constituencies, and with LBT/MI women and people, as well as wider women-led social organising in Pacific small island states. DIVA for Equality is the WMG PSIDS Organizing Partner (2017-2019) and the Women and Gender Constituency (WGC) Liaison to the UNFCCC COP23 Presidency. Noelene is also on the UNDP Global Civil Society Advisory Committee (CSAC) and an adviser to the UNWomen Pacific Civil Society Advisory Group. DIVA for Equality co-convenes a regional Gender, climate change and SD coalition (PPGCCSD), We Rise Coalition (with femlinkPACIFIC, FWRM and IWDA); the Pacific Feminist SRHR Coalition; and is a founder/on the Working Group of new Pacific CSO Engagement Mechanism (PACCOM), etc. Noelene has a double degree in International relations and Peacebuilding from University of New England, and Diploma in Community Arts Management. She lives and works from Suva, Fiji.




Frances Adamson Portrait

Frances Adamson

Frances Adamson was appointed Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade on 22 July 2016. She took up the position in Canberra on 25 August 2016.

Prior to her appointment as Secretary, Ms Adamson was International Adviser to the Australian Prime Minister the Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP from November 2015.

From 2011 to 2015 Ms Adamson was Ambassador to the People’s Republic of China. She served in the Australian Consulate-General in Hong Kong in the late 1980s during the early years of China’s reform and opening. From 2001 to 2005, she was seconded as Representative to the Australian Commerce and Industry Office in Taipei.

Ms Adamson has twice served in the Australian High Commission in London, as Deputy High Commissioner from 2005 to 2008 and as Political Counsellor from 1993 to 1997.

She was Chief of Staff to the Minister for Foreign Affairs and then the Minister for Defence from 2009 to 2010.

She is married with four children.


Tim Costello Portrait

Rev Tim Costello

Rev Tim Costello is one of Australia’s best known community leaders and a sought after voice on social justice issues, leadership and ethics.
For 13 years until October 2016, Tim was Chief Executive of World Vision Australia, placing the challenges of global poverty on the national agenda. In his current role as Chief Advocate, Tim continues to use his public profile to affect change.
In addition Tim is Chair of the Community Council of Australia, and is a member of the following: the Multi-Stakeholder Steering Committee of the EU-Australia Leadership Forum; Australian National Development Index; Concern Australia Advisory Group and the Campaign for Australian Aid.
Tim is a founding board member and spokesperson for the Alliance for Gambling Reform, which campaigns for law reform to prevent harm from poker machine gambling.In earlier roles Tim was National President of the Baptist Union of Australia and Mayor of St Kilda. He has been Baptist Minister at St Kilda Baptist and Collins Street Baptist in Melbourne, as well as Executive Director of Urban Seed. In these roles he spearheaded public debate on problem gambling, urban poverty, homelessness, reconciliation and substance abuse.
Initially Tim studied law and education at Monash University, followed by theology at the International Baptist Seminary in Rueschlikon, Switzerland. He also received a Masters Degree in Theology from the Melbourne College of Divinity.
In 2006 Tim was named Victoria’s Australian of the Year, in June 2005 was made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO); in 2004, was named Victorian of the Year; and in 1997 was named as one of Australia’s 100 National Living Treasures.
His books include Faith (2016), Hope (2012), Another Way to Love (co-edited with Rod Yule); Streets of Hope: Finding God in St Kilda; Tips from a Travelling Soul Searcher; and Wanna Bet? Winners and Losers in Gambling’s Luck Myth (co-written with Royce Millar).
Tim and his wife Merridie have three adult children, Claire, Elliot and Martin.


Sarah Maddison Portrait

Sarah Maddison

Sarah Maddison is Associate Professor in the School of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Melbourne, where she is also Assistant Dean (Research) in the Faculty of Arts.

Her areas of research expertise include reconciliation and conflict transformation, Indigenous political culture, and social movements. In 2015 Sarah published a Conflict Transformation and Reconciliation (Routledge) based on research in South Africa, Northern Ireland, Australia, and Guatemala. Her other recent books include Black Politics (2009), Beyond White Guilt (2011), Unsettling the Settler State (co-edited with Morgan Brigg, 2011), The Women’s Movement in Protest, Institutions and the Internet, (co-edited with Marian Sawer 2014), and The Limits of Settler Colonial Reconciliation (co-edited with Tom Clark and Ravi de Costa 2016). Sarah was a Director of GetUp! from 2011, including as Chair of the Board until late 2016.


Liz Skelton Portrait

Liz Skelton

Liz is the co-founder of Collaboration for Impact (CFI) and has Liz has spent the last two years working exclusively on the establishment of Australia’s leading learning organisation. CFI builds capacity in collective impact(CI), adaptive leadership for social change and collective impact, systems change and social innovation. Liz brings this unique experience, skills and knowledge to the development of collaboration/s which enables cross stakeholder/sectors to change the way their systems work together to create positive social change.

Coming from a background leading NGOS’s in Scotland and Australia, Liz has over a decade of experience in Adaptive Leadership, working with leaders in community, government and businesses across Australia to learn the theory and apply the practice of Adaptive Leadership to tackle their toughest challenges. Liz co-lead the establishment and growth of a national learning and consulting organisation (Social Leadership Australia) For the past two years she has been blending Adaptive Leadership with the Collective Impact Framework, applying this extensive practice to communities working collaboratively across Australia to achieve better outcomes.

In 2013, she co-authored her first book, “The Australian Leadership Paradox: What it takes to lead in the Lucky Country”, together with Geoff Aigner, published by Allen & Unwin. Her latest book “Lost conversations: Finding new ways for black and white Australians to lead together” was launched in November 2014 and was co-authored with a group of Indigenous and non-Indigenous leaders during a five year leadership initiative.


Mark Chenery Portrait

Mark Chenery

Mark Chenery, Co-Director, Common Cause Australia
Mark Chenery is a communications expert and trainer who works with progressive organisations and political parties to incorporate a science-based approach to values in their work. Since establishing Common Cause Australia in 2014, he’s trained over 1,000 campaigners, communicator and fundraisers from Australia and New Zealand in values-based framing.


Paul Daniele Portrait

Paul “Paulie” Daniele

Paul “Paulie” Daniele owns and operates Mindful Body & Spirit, Melbourne. Through the vehicle of Mindful Body & Spirit, Paulie delivers movement and mindfulness based wellness programs to workplaces, conferences, schools and community groups.

Paulie has worked with clients such as Save the Children, Telstra, Ivanhoe Grammar and Collingwood College. Paulie has also presented workshops for Darebin City Council and the Mental Health in the Workplace Conference ’16 & ’17.

Paulie holds Bachelors Degrees in Arts (Humanities) and Education; a Graduate Diploma in Information Management; Certificates 3 & 4 in Fitness; Certificates in Yoga & Pilates Instruction; and is currently completing Mindfulness Teacher Training with expert Paul Majewski, Meditation Solutions.

It is Paulie’s mission in life is to empower others to achieve their potential through movement and mindfulness based practices.


Chris Roche Portrait

Chris Roche

Chris has over 25 years’ experience working for International NGOs as a project manager, evaluator, policy researcher and as a director. He joined La Trobe in 2012 and is the director of the Institute for Human Security and Social Change and Senior Research Partner with the Developmental Leadership Program.

He is particularly interested in understanding how social change happens, who is involved, and how the effectiveness of attempts to promote change is assessed. Chris is keen to develop new linkages between academia and development agencies and is keen to hear ideas and proposals about how best to make this happen.

 More exciting speakers to be announced!