Our Board of Directors

Lifeline Harbour to Hawkesbury is one of the NSW Lifeline centres accredited by Lifeline Australia and accountable to Lifeline Australia for the governance of its operations.

Carel Bothma – President

Carel Bothma joined the Board of Lifeline Harbour to Hawkesbury in July 2012. He commenced his career by specialising in Recruitment, Industrial Relations, and Organisational Development for 10 years before joining an executive leadership team leading the Human Resources function. Carel has gained his international HR experience from working in South Africa, Asia, New Zealand and project work in Europe. He relocated to Australia from South Africa in 1998 with Sara Lee Corporation as HR Director to establish HR functions for Nutrimetics in Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia and Thailand. As a business partner, he has introduced a number of organisational effectiveness initiatives such as continuous improvement, high performing culture and culture change initiatives to achieve business results. Carel’s entry into healthcare came when he joined Australian Hearing as HR Director and then St Vincent’s Health for an assignment. He then joined The Salvation Army Aged Care Plus in May 2015 as head of HR and later acting CEO and is currently General Manager HR Services.


He holds an honours degree majoring in Business Economics and Organisational Psychology, postgraduate diploma in Industrial Relations, a Masters Degree in Human Resources.




David Scott – Deputy President

David joined the Board of Lifeline Harbour to Hawkesbury in September 2013. He is also Chair of the Retail and Property Committee. David has degrees in science, business and policy and is presently undertaking a PhD in social policy at UNSW.

Most recently David was a senior executive at Commonwealth Bank where he had responsibility for group mergers and acquisitions in the group strategy division. He is also a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.



.Mark Hedges – Treasurer

Mark joined the Board of Lifeline Harbour to Hawkesbury in 2016, and has been a member of our Finance Audit and Risk Committee since then. He became Treasurer and chair of the Finance Audit and Risk Committee in March 2017. His career spans more than 40 years in commercial and financial roles in the listed corporates.

He has been associated with community works for many years, having experience on the board of a community hospital in South Australia and an appointment to a community trust established to assist people affected by the closure of a significant industry in regional NSW. He is a member of Turramurra Rotary and was President in 2016-17.

Mark has a bachelor’s degree in Business Studies, masters degrees in business administration and also applied finance. He is a CPA, a Fellow of the Finance and Treasurers Association and a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. He is a Director and Deputy Chair of Hunter United Employees Credit Union and Newcastle Anglican Church Corporation.



Barbara Ward – Board MemberICC_BarbaraWard_web

Barbara joined the board of Lifeline Harbour to Hawkesbury in March 2017. She is an experienced and qualified senior executive, with experience in fundraising, welfare services, humanitarian aid, finance, business administration, human resources, state & local government and management consulting.

Over more than two decades in the Not For Profit sector, Barbara – who was Managing Director of the San Foundation – has raised millions of dollars for worthy causes, particularly in the aged and healthcare sectors, and has developed and implemented sustainable programs and projects that have changed lives for the better.

A former President of Fundraising Institute of Australia, in February of 2017 she was honoured with the ‘Ku-ring-gai Local Woman of the Year 2017’ award, in recognition of her outstanding contribution and service to the community and health sector.



Doreen Kirby – Board Member

Doreen joined the Lifeline Harbour to Hawkesbury Board in December 2017 and has been a member of the Gala Ball Fundraising Committee since August 2016.

She is passionate about volunteering and has supported youth focused education and sports programs in management and fundraising roles over many years.

Doreen is head of marketing for Royal Bank of Canada’s Capital Markets arm in Australia.  Her career in institutional banking includes roles in Sydney with Commonwealth Bank, Macquarie Bank and County NatWest and in London with Salomon Smith Barney.  Doreen has a Bachelor of Business majoring in Marketing, a Certificate in Financial Markets from FINSIA, and published an academic paper ‘Ethical decision making for Marketers’.



Chris Kinsella – Board MemberCHRIS KINSELLA

Chris joined the Board of Lifeline H2H in August 2013. He is also a member of the Finance, Audit and Risk Committee for Lifeline Harbour to Hawkesbury and is a lawyer and chartered accountant. Chris has over 30 years professional experience and has practised in Sydney, London and Singapore.

Chris has a Masters of Law from Cambridge University, a Masters of Economics from Macquarie University and undergraduate law and economics degrees from Sydney University. He also holds a diploma in Applied Finance and Investment from the Securities Institute (now known as Finsia).

He is a partner in the law firm Minter Ellison.



Peter Tuchin – Board Member 

Dr Peter Tuchin has worked at Macquarie University for over 27 years and is currently an Associate Professor. Peter’s areas of research include the relationship of posture with neck pain, headaches and migraine, chronic pain syndromes, and the relationship of vertebral artery dissection stroke with chiropractic.

Peter has been President of the Chiropractic & Osteopathic College of Australia (COCA) and was recently made a Life Member of COCA. Peter is also a member of the World Federation of Chiropractic (WFC) Disability and Rehabilitation committee and has had over 30 papers accepted for WFC Congresses, where he received several international research awards. Peter also conducted one of the largest RCT’s on chiropractic and migraine to date.

Peter has had a long relationship with Lifeline through his wife (Tessa Marshall) and is also currently a member of the Gala Ball committee



Karen Aucamp – Board Member 

Karen joined the Board of Lifeline Harbour to Hawkesbury in October 2018. She is also Chair of the Human Resources Committee and volunteered for Lifeline as a Telephone Crisis Supporter (TCS) between 2017 and 2019. Karen currently works as a Human Resources (HR) Director for Honeywell with experience across Asia Pacific, India, Middle East and South Africa. Karen previously worked for Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC) and Ingersoll Rand. Karen has Honours Degrees in Psychology and in Social Work and a Masters in Management (HR) and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAIDC). During her Social Work training Karen gained experience in Medical and Psychiatric Social work as well as Child & Family Welfare. Current HR work specialisations include Change Management, Organisational Behaviour & Culture and Executive Coaching.

Karen immigrated to Australia in 2000 from South Africa with her family and maintains a keen interest in Behavioural Economics, Politics, Psychology & Mental Health.



Mike Thomas – Board Member 

Mike joined the Board in September 2018. He is also a Volunteer Telephone Crisis Supporter with Lifeline.

Mike has a Bachelor Degree in Economics and Social Development, an MBA, a post-graduate Diploma in Property and Finance, and a Diploma in HR.

Prior to coming to Australia, Mike worked with an international development organisation in Wales, managing their training and development, including a number of projects in Eastern Europe. Following this, he advised some of Wales’ fastest growing companies, mainly in the food industry, to develop growth strategies and seek capital to realise these.

Mike came to Australia in 2002 to join the NSW Department of State and Regional Development, where he worked for 5 years developing and managing programs to support high growth food and biotech companies. He subsequently went on to spearhead Economic Development at Parramatta City Council, facilitating some of the growth seen in the City of Parramatta over the last 15 years or so. He’s currently the Head of Economic Development at Blacktown City Council.

Mike has also spent a period of time in the not-for-profit sector. This included the establishment of national youth charity Whitelion in NSW, and the role of the CEO of Ronald McDonald House Charities Greater Western Sydney.

Mike is married and has 3 boys. His interests outside of work include motorbikes, climbing and the outdoors, and DIY.