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Our Experts

We have a team of experts who provide advice, comments and analysis on a range of child-related issues to media, government and other aid agencies.

Save the Children has a team of experts with extensive experience in areas such as humanitarian emergencies, child protection, international development, government policy, education and health. 

Journalists who wish to speak to one of our experts can get in touch with our Media team to set up an interview.

Karen Flanagan A.M. – Child Protection Advocate

Karen Flanagan A.M. – Child Protection Advocate

Widely acknowledged as one of Australia's foremost educators and practitioners in the field of child sexual abuse and child abuse prevention, Karen leads Save the Children's child protection work. She manages the Child Protection Technical Unit and provides essential advice and guidance to the organisation on all child protection and safeguarding matters.

As part of her role, Karen also leads on providing technical support and training for staff and programs across Australia and internationally, helping ensure children are kept safe and protected from harm through all aspects of Save the Children's work. Karen is a qualified social worker with almost 30 years clinical, managerial, training and research experience in child protection.


Nick Ireland – Climate Change Director

Nick Ireland – Climate Change Director

Nick has worked in international aid and development since 1997 specialising in Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction. He currently manages Save the Children Australia’s Climate Change Division which focuses on how to address the impacts of climate change on children.

Accredited to the Green Climate Fund in 2019 the Climate Change Division is also responsible for supporting the global Save the Children movement to design and implement largescale climate change programs with national governments in least developed countries.

Nick has extensive experience in Asia, the Pacific, Africa and Latin America. He holds a Master of Arts from London University’s School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS).


Archie Law - International Programs Director

Archie Law - International Programs Director

Archie has spent the last 25 years working in conflict zones with the United Nations and NGOs in Asia, the Middle East and Africa. He currently leads Save the Children Australia’s International Programs Division and is a regular commentator in the Australian media.

Archie spent 2018 in Iraq with Save the Children International leading the start-up of the Building Peaceful Futures Consortium. He was the founding Executive Director of ActionAid Australia and a member of ActionAid’s Global Leadership Team. He has worked for the UN Development Program in South Africa on conflict prevention and recovery, the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations in New York and headed up the Mines Advisory Group in Cambodia.

Archie has a Master of Arts in International Relations from Monash University, a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from Monash University and has recently completed a Graduate Certificate in Coaching and Mentoring through Leeds Beckett University. 


Simon Henderson - Head of Policy

Simon Henderson - Head of Policy

Simon is an international human rights lawyer and policy analyst with experience in Australia and the Indo-Pacific. Prior to Save the Children, he was Senior Policy Adviser at Justice Centre Hong Kong, where he led a civil society human rights project on the United Nations Universal Periodic Review for China as it applies to Hong Kong. He also worked at the Law Council of Australia, DFAT and Human Rights in China. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce, Bachelor of Laws, and Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice from ANU, and a Masters of Laws in International Law from The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. Simon is admitted as a lawyer of the High Court of Australia and the Supreme Court of the ACT.


Kylie Williams – Head of Practice and Impact Measurement

Kylie Williams – Head of Practice and Impact Measurement

Kylie has over 25 years’ experience as a Social Worker and in leadership roles. She has worked in the fields of child development, child and family mental health, early childhood education, family support, out of home care, counselling, parenting, disability, homelessness, microfinance and virtual telepractice. Her experience spans not for profits, education, government and private practice settings, across rural, regional and metropolitan locations.

Kylie is passionate about designing inspiring service and practice models focused on improving outcomes for children.  A child’s rights lens underpins her work, and she strongly believes in placing children’s voices at the centre of decision making and service delivery. Services Kylie has designed have been recognised through National Child Protection Awards, National Mental Health Awards and State Based Industry Awards.


Sue Leahy - Manager of Fidelity and Impact Measurement

Sue Leahy - Manager of Fidelity and Impact Measurement

Sue is an accomplished evaluator and strategic advisor who draws on 20 years’ experience to bring insight into complex social policy problems.  She has worked with government and with the not-for profit sector to lead service and system design, development and evaluation across multiple policy sectors including education, child and family and environment. 

She uses co-design and other forms of facilitation to enable collective approaches to service design and delivery principles, outcome frameworks, and impact measurement. She has worked extensively in Australian Indigenous contexts and in 2019 was awarded the received the Australian Evaluation Society Award for Excellence in Indigenous Evaluation working as an evidence partner with identified Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations in NSW.  

Prior to working with Save the Children Sue led a successful portfolio of evaluations and capacity building projects for ARTD Consultants and before this she held senior roles within the NSW government including the NSW Department of Family and Community and Department of Premier and Cabinet.  Sue is an AES member and recently served three years as an AES Board member and Chair of the AES Board’s Learning and Professional Practice Committee.  


Oliver Hill - Practice Development Manager (Youth & Community Development)

Oliver Hill - Practice Development Manager (Youth & Community Development)

Oliver leads the Youth and Community Development portfolios, providing support to teams across Australian Services with practice advice. Oliver has over 15 years' experience working in the child welfare sector throughout Australia and New Zealand, both in Government and non-Government departments and holds undergraduate and post-graduate qualifications in Psychology.

Prior to joining SCA, Oliver worked for OzChild in a national practice role. He has also worked as an Implementation Specialist for the Parenting Research Centre and has led teams in the Multisystemic Therapy (MST) and Treatment Foster Care Oregon (TFCO) programs.


Peta Nichol - Practice Development Manager (Family Functioning & Healthy Relationships)

Peta Nichol - Practice Development Manager (Family Functioning & Healthy Relationships)

Peta has 28 years' experience in the community service industry, initially working as a practitioner directly supporting children and their families, and for the last 20 years in leadership roles supporting teams working with families experiencing multiple and complex issues that impact on children’s safety.  In her current role within the Practice and Evaluation Team, Peta’s portfolio focuses on strengthening quality practice in our family functioning and healthy relationships services.  

Peta holds Bachelor qualifications in Psychology from the University of Queensland, a Graduate Certificate in Business Administration from Swinburne University, and is a certified trainer with the Safe and Together Institute. 


Mena Waller - Practice Development Manager (Cross Cultural Practice & Inclusion)

Mena Waller - Practice Development Manager (Cross Cultural Practice & Inclusion)

Mena is a proud Walman Yawuru woman from the Kimberley, WA living in Queensland and is committed to advocating the aspirations of First Nations peoples and working for greater diversity and inclusion of all people. Mena has lived and worked remotely managing outreach programs, and has experience across communications, community engagement, health advocacy, and children's services.

Mena's practice approach upholds fundamental Indigenous philosophies through the values of relationships, respect, responsibilities, rights, and reciprocity.​ She encourages two-way learning and a people-centred approach that supports the elevation of individual and collective voices to tell their stories and share the strength of their culture and identity. Mena holds tertiary qualifications in business, professional communication, community development, and educational leadership.

Mena is also an accredited Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health First Aid Trainer.


Belinda Dixon - Practice Development Manager (Child Development)

Belinda Dixon - Practice Development Manager (Child Development)

Belinda has a background in psychology and has spent a decade working with children and families across Australia in government and non-government settings. Her experience spans the family support continuum, ranging from early-intervention to out-of-home care, working across multiple roles including frontline practice, operational leadership, practice leadership and project work.

Her passion lies in early intervention for parents experiencing challenges in their parenting role; using a strengths-based coaching framework to facilitate sustainable change that promotes safe and nurturing environments for children and young people and supports optimal development.

Translating this passion to the practice leadership space has seen her focus on how organisations can build resilient, strengths-based teams to undertake this important work.


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