Our Board

Sue West – Chairperson

Elected to the ELAA Board in October 2015, Sue was the Associate Director of the Centre for Community Child Health and a Group Leader of Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (MCRI). In that  role she lead a national program of evidence generating initiatives concerned with early childhood policy and practice with the aim of improving outcomes for children in the early years. After ten years at MCRI Sue downshifted in 2022 to an honorary role at MCRI and the University of Melbourne and provides educational and mentoring support to up and coming staff and students.

Aileen Ashford – Deputy Chairperson

Aileen is the CEO of Kids First an independent not for profit child and family services provider and early years education specialist providing a range of services across Northern Melbourne and the Mitchell Shire. Prior to leading Kids First, Aileen was the Children’s Commissioner in Tasmania and a Board member of the Tasmanian Early Years Foundation which was instrumental in the policy and design of the innovative Statewide Early Years Child and Family Centre’s. Aileen has a strong commitment to social justice and ensuring children thrive, no matter their starting point in life, these are the threads that bind the fabric of her more than 30-year career across government and the not for profit health and community services sector. With a background in education and social work, she brings a strong record and skills in good governance, research and evaluation, policy and service development, and collaborative partnerships to enhance the lives of children and families.

Filippo Miotto – Treasurer

Filippo is an international tax advisor with eighteen years of professional experience in Italy, Luxembourg, and Australia. Currently working as a director at BDO, Filippo is passionate about sharing his financial experience with not-for-profit organisations. Filippo chairs the ELAA Finance and Risk Committee with responsibilities for oversight and governance of the organisation budget development, delegations and expenditure control, asset management and supports the Board on overall Financial and Risk areas.

Ros Casey – Secretary

Ros is the Director of Enrolments, Engagement, Communications and Advancement at St Michael’s Grammar School and a member of the School Executive. A specialist in philanthropy, communications,  sponsorship and industry and community engagement, for ten years she led the Advancement Office at Victoria University  (VU) responsible for the University’s philanthropic, sponsorship and alumni relations programs. Prior to joining VU, she was a consultant to the Prime Minister’s Community Business Partnership. She has also worked for the National Council for the Centenary of Federation, Engineers Australia and the Australian War Memorial. Ros has been involved with not-for-profit organisations including BreastWest, the Museum of Chinese Australian History, and The Song Room. She is currently a Board member of the AFL Cape York House Foundation and the Holmesglen Institute of TAFE Foundation.

Grant Boyd

Grant is the Chief Executive Officer of Meli (formed as a result of the merger between Bethany Community Support and Barwon Child, Youth & Family). The Meli group is based in Geelong, Victoria incorporating Meli Kindergartens and Meli Housing. Grant has worked in the education, disability, health and community sectors as a practitioner, consultant and in leadership roles for government, not-for-profit and private sector organisations. He holds qualifications in Education, Special Education, Child and Adolescent Psychology, and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Grant has in interest in governance, service system development, and the provision of integrated services for families and children from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Stacey Fox

Stacey has significant experience in research and policy development, and has worked within and across government, universities and the not-for-profit sector. Stacey is a strategic thinker adept at applying evidence to policy and practice and grappling with complex challenges. She has worked on a range of public policy issues including early childhood education; integrated service delivery; maternal and child health; system design for prevention and early intervention; family support program design; the development and embedding of outcomes frameworks; and systems change. CLICK HERE for more about Stacey.

Tracey McKay

Tracey has 20 years of experience in the Early Years sector across government and not-for-profit organisations and since March 2021, has been the CEO of Swinburne Children’s Centres. Having completed her Bachelor qualification earlier in her career, Tracey has attained post-graduate qualifications in Management, Governance and most recently, completed her Master of Business Administration, specialising in Leadership. She is a collaborative leader with strategic and business development experience. Tracey brings passion and commitment to the delivery of high-quality services that are affordable, accessible and support children and families to reach their full potential.

Samantha Kolasa

Samantha is the Chief Executive Officer of Glen Education – an Early Years Management organisation in metropolitan Melbourne. Samantha trained as a psychologist, working with marginalised, vulnerable and disadvantaged children in the not-for-profit sector before moving into senior management roles in Government, Child and Family Services, Aged Care, Disability and Early Childhood. Samantha completed her Masters of Business Administration (MBA) with a focus on Human Resource management and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. This is Samantha’s third Board position reflecting her commitment to the community and the provision of services for those who need it most.

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Leanne Bilinski

Leanne is an experienced senior marketing professional with wide-ranging knowledge across media, Not-for-Profit and consumer goods industries. She is a strategic thinker who uses insights to drive strategy. Leanne has a passion for education and is now teaching at Deakin University with a desire to bridge the gap between industry and academia and was the recipient of the 2023 Vice Chancellor’s award for Teaching Excellence – Deakin Business School (DBS) Work Integrated Learning (WIL) Suite Enhancement in Education and Employability. She is also the current President at Maribyrnong Kindergarten, a not-for-profit, community run kinder with an integrated bush kinder program. In her volunteer position as President, she fosters strong community connections and has an interest in advocating for enhancing children’s connection to the environment. Leanne holds a BCom, majoring in Marketing and Human Resource Management, post-graduate studies in Education Research, and is currently completing her Master of Education (Leadership and Learning).