Chalk Circle’s small team is made up of passionate volunteers from all walks of life – students, professionals, disability workers, mums, farm kids, nurses, and tradies – we value diversity of ideas and people.
Michelle has extensive experience in the private, public and not-for-profit sectors as an advisor, consultant, educator, researcher and manager. Michelle has industry expertise in justice and criminology; health promotion; preventing violence; and social change. She commenced her career at Victoria Police in research and policy, and later moved to KPMG as a Senior Advisor to Australian Federal and State Governments.
Later, Michelle worked for Beyondblue leading the Youthbeyondblue team. From here, she commenced her first executive role with White Ribbon Australia. In these capacities Michelle has developed, implemented and evaluated partnerships, projects, programs and services that target diverse groups with a particular focus on gender and young people. In recent years, her Board and Director roles have included those at Left Right Think Tank and Kingswood College in Victoria.
Michelle is currently pursuing her PhD at Swinburne University with a research focus on the fear of crime gender paradox, and is becoming qualified as a Clinical Psychologist. In addition, Michelle runs a small business in which she provides advisory services to not-for-profits and emergency services. Michelle convenes two subjects at RMIT University, one in criminology and crime prevention, the second in responding to family violence. In her spare time, she provides strategic advice and support to the dedicated team at Chalk Circle, does a terrible job of playing the guitar, and travels to far-away places where she tests the boundaries of airline luggage allowances.
Conor is an Australia/New Zealand dual citizen finishing up an Honours Program in International Studies at RMIT. He came into Chalk Circle from a Communications background working in NGOs and wanted to put his energy and experience into something that makes a difference in the lives of young people.
He cooks to relax and writes to embarrass (himself). Though he likes to think of himself as a valuable member of the team, and capable of making good decisions, one time he nearly got run over by a cruise ship and it was pretty much all his own fault.
Chelsea is a provisional psychologist currently studying a Master of Organisational Psychology. Her true passions mainly involve travel, wine and dumplings…especially if she can indulge all three at once. She also loves chatting, which is one of the reasons why she is so excited to be creating conversations about gender with Chalk Circle.
Chelsea has always been fascinated by human behaviour, and is particularly interested in looking at ways to help people flourish at work and in their personal lives.
With gender norms impacting everyone, and often restricting our ability to thrive and achieve, this is an area of particular interest for her. In this vein, her master’s thesis explores how gender biases can prevent men from accessing flexible work arrangements.
Michelle is a doctor working in public hospitals across Melbourne. She graduated from Monash University with Honours in a Bachelor of Medicine/Bachelor of Surgery and has continued to be an advocate for equitable and accessible healthcare. She has a particular focus on education, gender literacy and youth engagement.
Alongside holding committee positions with several medical and women-led organisations, including the Victorian Medical Women's Society, she also facilitates violence prevention programs and advises State Government on LGBTI policy.
A published writer and fiction editor, Michelle enjoys the vibrant arts scene in Melbourne – though not, perhaps, as much as she enjoys its food. She endeavours to eat her way across the city, one smashed avo at a time.
I always wished these gender literacy conversations came up earlier in my life. Volunteering with Chalk Circle means that I can see this being achieved with the next generation.
School Liaison Officer
Bec is a current International Studies student at RMIT, a massive politics nerd and a passionate traveller. Through her studies she has developed a passion for gender issues, and is particularly interested in the power of education for improving the lives of women and girls in the future.
A gap year spent in France cemented her love of languages, and she’s eagerly awaiting an upcoming community development project in India.
When not busy with her attempt to eat brunch at every café in Melbourne, Bec enjoys drinking endless cups of tea and settling in bed with a good book.
Elly is currently undertaking a Bachelor of Arts at the University of Melbourne, majoring in Gender Studies. She can also be found voluntarily tutoring students of all ages from disadvantaged backgrounds.
She joined Chalk Circle in 2015 because of her passion for gender issues, and belief in the power of education to create a better world. When not fighting for gender equality, Elly is most likely testing human caffeine limits or trying to recommend a book to you.
"I believe Chalk Circle's work is important because education is the most important foundation to social change. An awareness of the effects of gender socialization is something many of us do not gain until after high school. Creating these conversations at a younger age means these effects can be combated from a place of knowledge and understanding."
Julia is very much interested in innovative ways that we can bring about social change and it is this curiosity that has led her to Chalk Circle.
In her work as a Clinical Psychology PhD Candidate and Researcher at Swinburne University, she uses a youth participation framework to develop novel programs for young people in early psychosis.
She is also training as a Clinical Psychologist, where her interests lie in working with, and empowering people from vulnerable communities.
Prior to this, Julia lived in London where she worked in project roles for two dynamic grassroots organisations in the urban renewal and criminal justice sectors.
Sarah has recently completed a double degree in Arts and Commerce at Australian Catholic University, majoring in Human Resources and Literature. Her studies in Human Resources and time volunteering at VIC ICT for Women made her realise her passion for equality, and she hopes to do her part to promote equality through her work in Human Resources.
In her spare time Sarah can be found in two possible forms: either a hermit, binge-watching embarrassingly large amounts of Netflix at a time; or a social butterfly, travelling around Melbourne to find the best brunch and hiking spots with friends for her neglected Insta-blog. Her goal is to become Insta-famous enough to get free brunch. It isn’t working.
"I believe that Chalk Circle’s work is important, because we live in a society where equality shouldn’t have to be debated, yet still is. By working with society’s youth, we can help prevent the biases that create such inequality. Hopefully, we can make the world a place where people don’t need to question their place in society."
Morgan is currently finishing her undergraduate studies at Monash University, specialising in communications and law. She is extremely passionate about gender equality, particularly issues that surround diverse media representation. She is of the firm belief that gender norms and biases effect everyone, and that gender literacy amongst young people is the solution.
She has worked with institutions that promote social inclusion through both policy-making and practical work. In her spare time, Morgan enjoys long walks on the beach, eating her body weight in breakfast foods, and crushing the patriarchy.