Board of Management



Our Board

President

NALAG (NSW) Inc

Julie Dunsmore AM Psychologist MAPS

A little about Julie...

Julie has been working as a psychologist in the area of loss, grief and trauma for over 30 years. Since 2003 Julie has been the Bali Trauma Recovery Coordinator primarily working with NSW Bali Bombing survivors, bereaved, & first responders; survivors from the Tsunami and most recently a consultant for those working with the bereaved from the Victorian bushfires.

In 2008 Julie was invited to address the UN Supporting Victims of Terrorism symposium in New York and be part of the expert working group. Julie has had a special interest in working with bereaved parents, adolescents and children. She has worked extensively with those who have experienced traumatic bereavement after a sudden unexpected death, including suicide, murder and accidents. Julie conducts training in the area of Psychological First Aid, PTSD and Complex Grief treatment. She is well recognised for her innovative model of working creatively with those who have experienced trauma and grief.

Contact Julie:Email

 

Treasurer (Volunteer)

Danielle Maloney
A little about Danielle...

Danielle has worked in health promotion and mental health for over 20 years. She has specialised in youth mental health and is passionate about improving trauma informed care in our mental health services.

Contact Danielle: Email

 


Secretary/Public Officer (Volunteer)

Kerry Frost

A little about Kerry...

I joined NALAG in 2000 as a volunteer and served one term as President of the Dubbo Chapter. In 2004 I accepted the position of Secretary to the NALAG Board. I have attained two Diplomas, one in counselling and another in Chaplaincy. I have also attended many workshops covering Loss, Grief and Trauma during my sixteen years with NALAG. This has enabled me to offer Grief support to a wide variety of clients. It has been a privilege and an honour to serve with a highly skilled Board who have a passion for supporting people experiencing Loss, Grief and Trauma. The Board bears the responsibility for moving the organisation in a productive direction as defined by the objectives and strategic goals of NALAG. This is why NALAG is such a successful and wonderful organisation and to be part of - this brings great satisfaction and joy.

Contact Kerry:Email

 


Committee Member (Volunteer)

Beate Steller (Volunteer)

A little about Beate...

Beate Steller brings over 30 years of experience in a variety of sectors to her role as a Training Consultant and Spiritual Care Team Leader. Beate has been an adult educator for the last 20 years which included being a Training and Development Co-ordinator at the Centre for Community Welfare Training, Australian College of Applied Psychology, the Professional Development People, and Lifeline’s (Sydney/ Sutherland) Telephone Counselling Trainer and Telephone Counsellor. Her experience includes working as a Strategic Planner and a Community Development Officer at Sutherland Council, working with long term unemployed and especially with people from Indigenous and CALD Backgrounds. Beate’s experience in the Health Services’ Industry includes specialising in HIV AIDS, palliative care and aged care.

Her work has focused on working with organisations and individuals in the development of their goals, helping them to resolve conflicts, work through change and associated losses and developing a participatory approach in their work. In the last 8 years Beate has specialised in grief and loss education/ counselling and transition counselling. Beate has been on the Board of NALAG (National Association for Loss and Grief) since 2009. She has both graduate and post graduate qualifications in Adult Education.

Contact Beate: Email

 


Committee Member (Volunteer)

Jennifer Cowley (Volunteer)

A little about Jen...

Jen Cowley is an award winning journalist, writer, editor and trainer based in Dubbo, NSW. She is passionate about community development, and has used her skills in communication and the media to work with communities both in Australia and abroad. Jen grew up on a farm at Coonabarabran and has been writing since she could first hold a pen. Grandpa's Hat grew out of her experiences as a child, and later as a grieving adult, and her discussions with the National Association for Loss and Grief (NALAG) about the need to talk to and involve children about and with loss and grief. Jen is also a proud Rotarian, and with the support of Rotary, was able to publish Grandpa's Hat as a resource to help NALAG continue its work with those who are, as Jen herself was, suffering through loss and grief. Grandpa's Hat is her way of saying "thank you" to NALAG.

Contact Jen: Email

 


Committee Member (Volunteer)

Ruth Gobbitt

A little about Ruth...

I am the Co-ordinator of the Mudgee Branch of NALAG which opened its doors in 2014. I have worked in dementia care in Mudgee and have seen how NALAG works first hand. I could see how NALAG helped both clients and their families. I found NALAG had a role to play. I did the basic training and thought it would be a good program to become more involved in when I retired.

Well, when I retired, a group met to look at setting up a branch of NALAG in Mudgee. We had a very supportive group and began the hard work of establishing a branch in Mudgee. I found myself as the Co-ordinator and I use the skills I have developed in my working life in this role. I feel it is important to be able to communicate effectively, to listen to people's stories.

I especially feel creativity is important as an aid to working through grief. I am an artist and you can mostly reach someone through pictures or music. There is a way of connecting worlds which sometimes doesn't happen with words. It can be a way of finding common ground. I have done some 'Healing Workshops' with Trudy in the far west and have used clay to help people access what they are dealing with.

It is very satisfying work and a great way to spend 'retirement'.

Contact Ruth:Email

 


Committee Member (Volunteer)

Virginia Nicholas (Volunteer)

A little about Virginia...

I have an extensive background working in education, teaching at TAFE for 30 years. I have been involved with NALAG for the last two years and accepted the position of board member in 2016.

I have a passion for helping those who have experienced loss and I hold the strong belief that people should not walk alone.

Contact Virginia: Email


Manager

NALAG Centre for Loss & Grief Dubbo & Branch Coordinator (Paid)

Trudy Hanson OAM Grief Counsellor & Educator

A little about Trudy...

Trudy Hanson is the Manager of the NALAG Centre for Loss & Grief in Dubbo, New South Wales and Branch Co-ordinator for NALAG (NSW) Inc. She is a Grief Counsellor and Educator who has worked in the field of grief and bereavement for over 25 years. Trudy conducts education and training in the area of loss, grief, trauma and bereavement throughout NSW and is frequently called upon to lecture at Charles Sturt University Dubbo. Trudy has also worked in Youth Suicide Prevention and Health Promotion for the Greater Western Area Health Service. She worked for Burnside Doorways setting up and running a Mentoring Program for homeless youth.

Drawing on her early involvement in the NSW State Emergency Service and the Volunteer Rescue Association for over 25 years together with her interest in loss, grief and trauma, Trudy has developed the Psychological First Aid Training Program - A Guide for First Responders Following the Immediate Aftermath of a Disaster. The development of the Blue Healers Depression, Stress and Anxiety Program and the Bereavement Buddy Grief Support Program is also to Trudy's credit.

Trudy has trained many professionals and volunteers in grief theory, intervention and counselling skills throughout NSW and has presented at the International Conference for Grief and Bereavement in London in 2005 and Melbourne in 2007.
She has a strong interest in Indigenous loss and grief, child and adolescent grief, traumatic and complex bereavement.

Trudy was awarded the Order of Australia Medal for her extended commitment to community service.

Contact Trudy:Email