Our Board

Launchpad Board of Directors (2015)

The Launchpad Board of Directors are highly experienced local community members who undertake governance responsibility for the organisation.

Jo Evans  (Chairperson):  Jo Evans has been on the Board of Launchpad since 2008. She has a strong interest in the provision of legal services to young people, and has been admitted to practice as a solicitor since 2003. Jo has worked in private practice, for Victoria Legal Aid, and most recently with the Children’s Legal Service (Legal Aid NSW) from 2005 to 2009 representing young people charged with criminal offences and providing visiting Legal Service to young people in custody. Since November 2009 Jo has worked in the Human Rights section of Civil Law at Legal Aid NSW. This role involves representing young people (as well as adults) in civil law matters, participating in projects aimed at improving relationships between young people and police, and improving treatment of young people in the Criminal Justice System. Jo has a Bachelor of Arts (Psychology) from Sydney Uni, and a Bachelor of Laws from La Trobe University.

Tracey Brown: Tracey has over twenty years’ experience in the NSW Public Health system working with marginalised people both in drug and alcohol and youth services. Tracey is currently the Manager of Youth Health Services for the Sydney Local Health District and of Youthblock Youth Health Service based in Camperdown and has lived in the inner west for over thirty years. Tracey has a Masters of Public Health and a Masters of Health Management from the University of NSW.

Loretta Allen-Weinstein: Loretta has over twenty years experience working with disadvantaged young people in the homelessness and criminal justice sectors. She has managed non government services in Victoria and NSW. Loretta currently works with Juvenile Justice in strategic planning and policy development. Loretta has a degree in Youth Work and is currently the industry representative on the international organisation – Collaboration of Researchers for the Development of Effective Offender Supervision (CREDOS).

Julia Sok:Julia grew up in the Inner West and remains closely connected to the area. Julia has personal experience with youth homelessness and disability, and has worked in Government, Business Analytics, Telecommunications, Workforce Planning and Recruitment, and currently works in Information Technology.

Andrea Fernandes:Andrea has over 15 years’ experience working in social policy, community engagement, accessibility, research, project management and political administration, in the private and public sectors. She holds a BA Hons. in Social Science and is studying Human Rights Law for her Masters at UNSW. Born overseas, Andrea has made Sydney her home and has lived in the inner west for over 10 years.

Tony Ottavio:Toni Ottavio, is a Registered Nurse with over 25 years experience working in neuroscience, mental health and health service management across public, private and not for profit sectors. Toni is currently employed as General Manager in Uniting Hope and Uniting Recovery programs which include specialist homelessness services, mental health and psychosocial services, community living support, Lifeline Western Sydney and Responsible Gambling counselling across Nepean to the Central Coast. Toni Ottavio has participated on working parties developing NSW Work Health and Safety Roadmap for NSW 2022, NSW Youth Health Framework 2017-21. Toni is a current youth mental health first aid trainer.
Publications: A clinical staging model for early intervention in Youth Mental Health(2014) S Cross, D Hermens, E Scott, A Ottavio, P McGorry, I Hickie.

Tony Ling:Tony Ling has been a passionate youth advocate for many years ranging from his work in Headspace to the current developmental projects at Sydney Local Health District. Currently studying a BA in screen production at AFTRS while studying music at the University of Sydney, Tony is keen to put his creative passions as well as his experiences as a consumer into innovating youth services for Launchpad and disadvantaged youth everywhere.

Peerce McManus:Peerce is an admitted solicitor and has a Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Arts from UNSW. Peerce is currently an Associate in the Federal Court of Australia having previously worked with Legal Aid NSW with the Human Rights and Coronial Inquest teams. At Legal Aid, Peerce regularly represented, advised and worked with young people in Courts and tribunals in the inner city, regional and remote communities across a wide range of areas including police matters, guardianship, and housing. Peerce has an active interest in combatting the many barriers that disadvantaged youth face and has volunteered extensively with a number of youth organisations.