Our board is the most experienced outdoor education and risk management team in Australia. They have a wealth of experience. And are committed to creating the best possible outcomes for students, schools, communities, and parents alike.
Chair, Margaret Webb OAM
Margaret has had a long career in education; largely in Victorian independent schools. Since her retirement as Principal of Toorak College, Mt Eliza, she has continued an active involvement in education. She is deeply committed to promoting lifelong learning for all. Her involvement with OEG extends over 30 years.
Deputy Chair, Robert Pascoe
In 2000, Robert Pascoe was General Manager of Visy Special Events, responsible for development, recycling of all catering packaging products, furniture, fixtures, signage and marketing materials for the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, and re-manufacture using recycled raw materials. To this day, the Sydney Olympics are still remembered as the ‘Green Games.’
Director, Dr. Lorraine Smith
Lorraine Smith has more than 30 years experience in a variety of educational settings. She started her professional career as a secondary teacher in Physical Education and English in Victoria.
She has taught at Victoria University and La Trobe University. She was the Head of Outdoor Education and Nature Tourism at Bendigo for ten years before moving to The Outdoor Education Group in NSW.
Director, Craig Mitchell
Craig combined his passion for business and sport with an MBA in Sport Management at Deakin University.
Craig is currently an Associate Director in EY’s Sports, Events and Venues Consulting practice and provides strategic advice to a range of clients, including AFL clubs, Cricket Australia, the Australian Sports Commission, national sporting organisations, state sporting associations and not-for-profit organisations such as Bicycle Network.
Director, Chris O’Farrell
For the last 22 years Chris has held senior management roles in the Victorian Public Sector. Chris is currently Director Executive Services & Governance at Victoria Police, and a member of Police Command. From 2008 to 2013 Chris was the Chief Financial Officer at the Department of Primary Industries Victoria. He is currently also a Board Director of Strathcona Girls Grammar School and Chair of its Finance and Risk Committee.
Director, Peggy Mahy
Peggy is in her fourth year as a Principal at The Scots School Albury; an independent, coeducational boarding school on the border between NSW and Victoria.
In all contexts Peggy has sought to enhance the capabilities of teachers with a clear focus on outcomes for students. Peggy is also a firm believer in holistic education and in the power of experiential learning. Her involvement with The Outdoor Education Group extends over 20 years.
Jenny Holliday, AM
Jenny brings a diverse set of experiences to her role as an OEG Director having commenced her career in education which included outdoor education and community service programs. Jenny has headed up the Victorian Olympic Council and the People and Parks Foundation and now is a Partner and Lead facilitator at Non Profit Training; working to build capability in not for profit organisations. She has been involved in international, national and local boards and has an Olympic Bronze medal from her 14 year membership of the Australian Softball Team.
TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS. SCHOOLS. AND STUDENTS.
Between us we have expertise spanning adventure activities, education, and business. Meaning that, combined, we understand not only the natural world, but the educational ecosystem, and professional climate students graduate into.
Richard has worked within the outdoor industry for over 25 years. He has been the Chief Executive of The Outdoor Education Group since January 2016. Previously, Richard was CEO of UK Sailing Academy, Deputy Director at The Prince’s Trust and Operations Director of Fairbridge. He was also Chair of the Adventure Activities Industry Advisory Committee, the UK’s lead body for safety in adventurous activities. Richard is currently a member of the Sports and Recreation Industry Reference Committee and Chair of the Committee reviewing the Outdoor Recreation Training Package.
Director of Business Development
Ben has worked in the education sector for almost 18 years, predominantly in the field of outdoor education. Ben’s main area of focus is in forming long-term, strategic partnerships with schools, so that they may achieve the desired student outcomes from their outdoor education program. Individually, Ben has worked with a large number of schools across Victoria, ACT, NSW and South Australia, and now currently leads a team that manages over 200 schools across the country. Ben holds a Bachelor of Music, a Graduate Diploma in Outdoor Education and a Diploma of Education and has previously taught in schools for a number of years. As the Executive Director of Business Development, Ben is currently responsible for strategic growth targets, as OEG looks to expand is offerings to students throughout Australia.
Director of Outdoor Learning
Martin has been with the Outdoor Education Group for 6 years and during that time has shaped the educational and operational delivery of Outdoor Programs throughout NSW, VIC, ACT and SA. Having worked in the outdoor industry for Schools, Government, Commercial and Not for Profit, both in Australia and Overseas, Martin has developed a diverse range of experiences to help inform progressive educational delivery and best practice in Risk and Quality Assurance. Martin also holds the position of President for Outdoors NSW, the peak body for the Outdoor Sector in NSW, and has been instrumental in ensuring relevance and purpose to its members. In this role he sits on various advisory committees and consults for government policy in the outdoor ‘Active Recreation’ sector. Martin is also a committee member for the Outdoor Council of Australia representing NSW and advocating for the industry at a national level.
Director of Finance and Resources
Jamie joined The Outdoor Education Group in the first half of 2018. He had a career in industry in various accounting roles before joining the AFL in 2005. He held a number of roles at the AFL including Business Analytics, State Operations Finance, Club and Stadium reporting and Manager of the Soft Cap. He now leads The Outdoor Education Group’s Finance and Resources Division overseeing HR, IT, Resources as well as Finance. In addition, Jamie is The Outdoor Education Group’s Company Secretary.
Director of Innovation and Research
Clare has been an outdoor educator for over twenty years, a decision influenced by her own experience as a participant on outdoor education programs growing up in Northern Ireland. Clare has been focused on improving risk management in the outdoors for the past sixteen years and has published and presented her innovative research all over the world. Clare has an MSc. in Risk and Crisis Management and currently leads Risk Resolve, OEG’s risk management consulting division. As part of Clare’s PhD research, she has developed a new risk assessment method which has recently been published (Dallat, Salmon & Goode, 2017). Clare also leads the Community Programs Team at OEG, where she is responsible for developing new partnerships and processes to enable young people who may, through multiple circumstances, be prevented from participating in highly meaningful outdoor learning opportunities.
Ms Anny McMaster
Head of Client Relationships
Anny’s journey into outdoor education started in the Scouts movement as a Venturer. Experiencing firsthand the benefits of being challenged in new environments and activities such as caving and abseiling. Anny has sought roles that provide similar opportunities for young people. Anny completed a Bachelor of Arts (Outdoor Education) and engaged with residential programs which allowed for a deeper connection with students such as a teaching role at Methodist Ladies’ College remote campus in Mallacoota. In 2014 Anny joined the Outdoor Education Group looking to influence a greater number of young people in the outdoors. After completing various roles within the organisation and undertaking a Master’s in Educational Management, Anny has an excellent understanding of the schools’ expectations and requirements in undertaking outdoor education programs. She continues to utilise this knowledge to guide and mentor the Victorian Client Relationship Managers in their roles.
Head of Educational Delivery
Matt is passionate about the power of learning in the outdoors. He sees working for The Outdoor Education Group as a fantastic opportunity to engage with thousands of young people and hundreds of outdoor educators every year. The outdoor learning landscape in Australia is rich with culture and content and this enables learning programmes to be delivered that change lives and provide real insights into students’ own nature and how they connect with others and their environment. Matt holds a Master’s Degree in Outdoor Education, a Master Practitioner of NLP and was awarded the qualification of Leading Practitioner by the Institute for Outdoor Learning.
Head of Human Resources, Recruitment and Staffing
Sara has worked and lived in various locations across the world. Her varied early career included working with English Outdoor Adventure Companies ‘Quest’ and ‘PGL’ in the South of France and a Business Unit Manager at Murrindindi Shire. Since joining The Outdoor Education Group in 2001, She has worked in various positions across the organisation, developing her knowledge of the unique Australian Outdoor Industry with increasing passion and understanding for the importance of developing and managing our People Resources. Sara is currently undertaking a Bachelor of Business (professional) with a major in Human Resource Management and is a certified member of The Australian Human Resources Institute.
National Head of Quality Assurance
Paul has over 28 years’ experience in guiding, facilitating and managing Outdoor Learning Experiences across a diverse range of groups and environments both within Australia and Internationally. He has held the roles of Senior Lecturer, Head of Teaching and Learning and Director of Risk Management. He is currently a member of the industry advisory group for the development of the National Data Set, through UPLOADS and sits as a panel advisory member for the National Parks Victoria for the Outdoor Sector. As well as qualified Lead Trainer and Guide, Paul holds a Bachelor of Science in Rural Resource Management and Post Graduate Certificate in Education. At OEG, Paul currently provides risk systems management and oversight to five states, maintaining a Critical Incident Response system and team.
National Head of New Business
Phil has worked in the outdoor experiential sector both as a client and business developer for more than 25 years. He has gained huge insight into emerging markets and educational trends whilst managing the pragmatic counterpoint of client sensitivity and industry best practice. Phil holds a Bachelor of Education, which includes over 18 years teaching experience across government and independent sectors. At OEG, Phil has been managing a portfolio of clients for over 10 years and is currently a key strategist in the development of SA and QLD new business. He has a strong skillset in development and implementation of significant client school Outdoor Experiential Learning Programs.
National Head of Camps
Andrew has over 30 years’ experience in the management of residential campsite facilities in both the not for profit and commercial environments. Key achievements, qualifications and involvement throughout his career include:
• President Australian Camps Association
• Founder and Director UC Camping Victoria operating seven sights owned by the Uniting Church
• Principal Officer for the Black Saturday bushfire recovery villages in partnership with the VBRRA
• International trainer for the International Camp Directors Course
• ICF Board member
• Bachelor Science P.E. and MBA Leadership and Innovation
Head of Operational Delivery
Helen has been working in Outdoor Education since 2003. Her current role as Acting Head of Outdoor Learning NSW, involves supporting a dedicated team of outdoor people; Providing opportunities for the development of all our Outdoor Educators; Creating efficiencies in all our systems and processes; Ensuring that our staff have all the resources they need to focus on the delivery of quality Outdoor Education experiences thus providing memorable experiences for young people. A career in the outdoor industry has given her the opportunity to interact with a wide range of people, across a broad spread of ages, experiences and social / economic backgrounds.
Head of Client Relationships
Mark came to The Outdoor Education Group 7 years ago from Canada where he had recently completed a Masters degree focused on teacher perceived self-efficacy in relation to delivering experiential learning in the outdoors. Since being with OEG, Mark has held a number of positions including Senior Manager, Head of Senior Managers, Director of Schools NSW and most recently as Head of Relationships. In his current role, Mark oversees a team of Client Relationship Managers who collectively ensure our clients, and most importantly the students receive, the best possible outcomes and are well support during their experience. Mark holds a Masters of Environmental Studies in Nature-Based Recreation and has led expeditions with students into wilderness settings on 6 of the 7 continents.
Head of Finance And IT
Hany is an experienced Certified Practicing Accountant, Head of Finance and ICT with a demonstrated history of working in the accounting industry. Responsible for overseeing and leading the Finance function (accounting, budgeting, reporting, treasury and tax) as well as providing commercial advice. Hany is skilled in Business Process, Budgeting, SAP, Oracle ERP, and Hyperion EPM. He is a strong information technology professional at OEG, leading a team of 10 highly productive, motivated employees.
Head of Operations, Catering & Property
Ian has worked within the Outdoor Education Group for 8 years holding a variety of operational roles. Throughout this time, he has driven the operational support functions of OEG’s journey-based programs on a national basis. Having held multiple management and leadership positions in the retail and warehousing industry prior to coming to OEG, Ian has used his experience to implement significant change and efficiencies across the organisation focused around stock control, compliance and return on investment. Ian is a keen outdoors person himself, and his passion for all things outdoors flows through into his home and family life, holding multiple volunteer leadership positions in the local community and outdoor pursuits arena.
Head of National Curriculum
Brendon is determined that outdoor education and adventure learning is paramount to the education of all students. That all students may have an opportunity to experience the world through exploration, reflection and experiential learning activities; in adventure camps, wilderness environments, or community settings, their lives can be positively changed. By providing these experiences, the foundation can be set for shaping a child’s growing knowledge, confidence and identity.
Brendon completed a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership at the Australian Catholic University in 2012. Focussing on educational leadership pedagogy and application. He has worked in a variety of educational settings including – both State and Catholic schools within Victoria. His experience in primary and secondary schools brings a breadth of curriculum understanding and practicum. His latest experience was establishing and developing a Year 9 campus at Salesian College Sunbury, whereby the focus is skill based, student centric learning. The Year 9 program utilised the surroundings of the college’s 1000-acre farm to deliver a meaningful, life centred approach to learning.