Our Board

Doreen Stoves AM PSM JP

Doreen Stoves was Chief Executive Officer of Doncare for 19 years before retiring in April 2020. Prior to this, Doreen worked for the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services for 25 years and held management positions across several program areas.  She previously managed a large Children's Institution from phase down to closure. Doreen is a Clinical Family Therapist with a passion for the prevention of violence against women and children. Doreen has been awarded two Australian Honour Awards, a member of the Order of Australia (AM) in 2013 and a Public Service Medal (PSM) in 1995. 

Bernadette Dobeli
Deputy Chair

Bernadette Dobeli joined the Safe Futures Board in approximately 1990. She has enjoyed working as a radiographer and continues in this role part-time. Bernadette has served on school and church committees over the years and is dedicated to the eradication of violence in all settings.

Florence Mauwa

Florence Mauwa joined the board in 2016. Florence is a business executive with over 20 years' experience in Accounting and Human Resources. She is a qualified accountant (FCCA) and a professional member of the Australian HR Institute (CAHRI). She is also a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (MAICD).

Florence has a particular passion for enabling marginalised communities to thrive, and sits on several not-for-profit boards.

Kerrie McMahon

Kerrie McMahon joined the board in 2018. Kerrie has more than 30 years’ experience in finance and quality system management in the government, private and community sectors. Kerrie is committed to developing systems within organisations to improve the quality of service delivery and outcomes for clients. Kerrie is a Certified Practising Accountant and has a Bachelor of Business (Accounting) and a Diploma in Quality Auditing. Kerrie has extensive experience and knowledge of risk management and policy and is a member of the Board Finance Committee, Risk Management Committee, and the Constitution Committee. An enthusiastic supporter of the not-for-profit industry, Kerrie has extended her work philosophy through her volunteering roles for several not-for-profit organisations.

Pradeepa Jayawardena York

Pradeepa Jayawardena York joined the board in 2018. Pradeepa is a solicitor and provides legal services in Victoria, Queensland, Northern Territory and elsewhere through her law practice. Pradeepa has an extensive career in law, management and government and a deep interest in community and justice issues. 

Pradeepa was Chief Legal Counsel of a large local government in Queensland, the Toowoomba Regional Council. Pradeepa was the lawyer responsible for human rights law, criminal law, administrative law, government law, and constitutional law at the Law Council of Australia in Canberra. Pradeepa worked in senior tax advisory and management positions at PricewaterhouseCoopers and at the Australian Taxation Office.

Raymond Burnett

Raymond joined the board in 2018. He is a dynamic executive consultant with significant senior experience in all levels of government, the community sector, private sector and academia.

Raymond's experiences include sitting on national decision-making panels and senior evidence advisory bodies; leading major service and organisational redevelopment; strategic plan facilitation and overseeing national and state-wide training initiatives. He holds a range of qualifications including a Masters in Leadership and Management, a Masters of Public Health, a Bachelor of Social Work and has completed the Institute of Company Directors and the International Partnership Brokers Association Programs.


In addition to his work with Safe Futures, Raymond is Past President of the Doncare Community Services board, a member of the Deakin University Health Academic Advisory board, a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, and sits on the Opening Doors Community Leadership Management Committee.

Emily Ryder

Emily is a mum to four grown children, an experienced information and technology leader with over 20 years’ experience within health and government across the UK and Australia. She holds degrees in Nursing and Law and is a Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Emily has had roles in operational leadership and management consultant for EY and KPMG. She has a passion for data and analytics to drive performance improvement and to help the organisation make well informed evidence-based decisions. Emily leads Analytics at Medibank – focussing on the clinical outcomes and value of health service delivery.  She is an experienced program and business change manager for large complex projects. Emily also sits on the Parenting Research Centre Ethics Committee and aims to use her experience to help vulnerable families live full, healthy and happy lives.

Professor Karen Smith

Professor Karen Smith joined the board in 2020 and is the Director of the Ambulance Victoria Centre for Research and Evaluation.  She is an epidemiologist with extensive experience in public health research.  Her relevant expertise includes governance, research, development of KPIs, performance measurement and quality improvement.  Karen also holds adjunct Professorial positions with Monash University in the Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine and the Department of Paramedicine.  She holds a Bachelor of Science with Honours and multiple post-graduate qualifications including a PhD.  She is passionate about social justice and helping marginalised populations.  She also sits on several international boards.


Paula Piccinini

Paula is a lawyer with extensive experience in the practice of family law, governance and the family violence sector. She holds a Bachelor of Arts and Laws from the Australian National University as well as a Graduate Diploma in Family Dispute Resolution.  She is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.


Paula practised as a barrister in family law for many years and she served as a Non-Executive Director of the RACV for nine years. 

She has worked in a managerial capacity at both InTouch, the Multicultural Centre Against Family Violence and EDVOS before joining Safe Futures Foundation in the role of CEO in November 2019.

Paula was an elected councillor of the City of Manningham from 2016 until 2020 and served as Mayor of Manningham in 2018/19.


Call 000

Safe Steps
on 1800 015 188
Contact Us

PO Box 12

Ringwood  Vic  3134

Phone: (03) 9877 0311

Email: info@safefutures.org.au

ABN Number: 19 275 051 972

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Specialist Family Violence Services