Libby Ellis is the Director of InCharge. She focuses on what it takes for people with disability to take front and centre stage of their own lives. Through this experience she noticed there was a gap between people’s desires for better and knowing how to get it. So InCharge acts like a social broker – connecting NDIS participants with other people, networks, opportunities, roles in their community, information and most importantly, their own capacity - in order to become genuine contributing citizens. This is the great opportunity for people with the NDIS.
Prior to this Libby worked for services to create genuine opportunities for personalised support, and for advocacy organisations. She brings 20 years experience supporting her brother with significant intellectual disability and autism to share his home with people without disability, define his own needs and direct his support to meet these needs. Her family’s partnership with a national service provider was the catalyst to the development of their self-managed services.
Penny is the Information and Connections Coordinator at the Summer Foundation. For the last year her work has focused on developing the market for Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA). Penny is writing the Summer Foundation's NDIS Housing Resources for participants and providers. She is a social worker with a Masters of Public Policy and Management.
Sian began her career in the disability service sector as a support worker and social trainer. She quickly moved into advocacy, providing individual and systemic advocacy on behalf of people with developmental disability, with particular focus on the NDIS.
Sian is a legislation nerd and feasts on ambiguous policy and procedures for breakfast. Naturally, the introduction of the NDIS has been a phenomenal interest (obsession) for Sian. As an advocate, She is constantly fighting for stronger protections and empowerment for people with disability under the federal scheme. Sian is nearing the completion of a Bachelor's Degree in Law.
Dr Carmel Laragy
Carmel Laragy, PhD, has developed extensive expertise in ‘individual funding’ through 16 years of national and international academic research in the topic. Carmel’s work has included service design, organisational change, professionals transitioning to a more collaborative and less authoritative style and workforce strategies regarding staff recruitment, training and retention. Carmel has taught social work, is published widely and has completed a Master’s Degree and a PhD titled Professionals in the Changing Workplace.
Driven by lived experience of disability and mental illness, Jenna has spent the last 6 years developing and operationalising social enterprises in the disability and mental health sectors. A graduate of QUT business school and a number of Australia’s top social enterprise accelerators, Jenna was the winner of the 2015 Brisbane City Council Budding Entrepreneur award, and now offers her expertise to DSC clients to assist with lean and innovative service development. Jenna is an exceptional presenter, writer and facilitator and offers unique insight into the commercial and cultural challenges faced by disability service providers transitioning to the NDIS.
John is an experienced leader in the Human Services sector. He has an extensive knowledge of NDIS and more broadly Human Services. He has been a lead Partner in two big four firms and has supported the implementation of some of the largest Transformation Projects in the Public Sector both in Australia and in the United Kingdom. He has failed a lot in his career and had a few successes along the way but continues to learn from both. He is especially excited by the prospect of implementing some technology that actually works in the sector through leveraging both the digital agenda and applying systems thinking.
John is an excellent communicator and attributes this to being brought up on a large hippy commune in rural England- his parents still maintain he ran away to become an accountant (which he is not).