top of page
Board profiles

Home / Board profiles

The QCOSS Board


Matt Gardiner

QCOSS Board Chair


Colleen Tribe

Dip Ed, B.Ed, Grad Dip Special Ed, Grad Cert Specialised Leadership, MAICD

BSocSc (Couns), M. Clin. Couns., Grad. Dip. Strategic Leadership, MAICD, FIML

Matt is the Managing Director of Australian Services with Save The Children, leading a large, professional workforce across every state and territory. He has a background in relationship and trauma counselling, disability, child protection, mental health, family law mediation, violence prevention and community development.


His experience has included several Social Impact Investments, including leading Australia’s first Social Impact Bond to mature, and has negotiated several innovative Payment By Outcome (PBO), based on risk/return modelling across a range of sectors. Matt has lead mergers and acquisitions in several sectors and segments and enjoys leading through cultural and business transformation.

Passionate about social justice, improving systems and therapeutic practice, Matt is an experienced practitioner and has held senior executive roles at some of Australia's leading not-for-profits. He currently serves as a director on several company Boards and governmental advisory committees. He is proud to contribute to the ongoing strength of QCOSS in its strategic objectives and to represent members across the state.

Matt is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management, Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and has undergraduate qualifications in psychology and counselling, Masters in Clinical Counselling, Grad. Dip. in Strategic Leadership.

After serving nearly a decade in the General Manager’s role of Roseberry Qld, Colleen is proud of the success she was able to achieve, leading the organisation to the very prominent position it holds within the social sector. Now relocated to Brisbane, Colleen is still focused on ensuring regional issues and interests are highlighted, while serving on the QCOSS Board.

Colleen is currently working within the education sector, where she is able to bring her experience and perspective, from the NFP and social sector. Her passion is to work with teachers to ensure best possible outcomes and potential are achieved for our children and young people - our children need great teachers in their lives, to inspire and motivate them.

Having an array of experience on boards, Colleen is continuing to enjoy working with such a talented group of people who sit on the QCOSS Board, as well as management and staff of QCOSS.


Faiza El-Higzi OAM

BSc (Hons), Grad Dip Pjt Mgt, MAppSc, MEd. PHD JP(Qual)

Faiza is a general member of QCOSS with over 20 years’ experience in the community sector as a board member, manager and volunteer, focusing on emerging African, Arab and Islamic communities.

She is a recipient of the Order of Australia Medal (2020) and Queensland Government Multicultural Award for Outstanding Individual (2018). Faiza has extensive experience working with young people and refugees. Currently Faiza is an academic with University of Queensland, and a member of the Queensland Domestic and Family Violence Implementation Council and Metro South Health Consumer Advisory Committee. Faiza is a member of the Queensland Multicultural Advisory Committee. She is the Chair of the Ethnic Broadcasting Association Queensland.

Faiza has 10 years’ experience in government at both state and federal levels in strategic policy, research and industry development. Her experience in the NGO sector includes community development, refugee settlement and youth engagement. Faiza has several qualifications including a post graduate level in Architecture, Project Management, International Business and Education. She is currently a PHD scholar at the University for Queensland focusing on gender studies.


Kevin Mercer


Kevin is the Chief Executive Officer of St Vincent de Paul Society Queensland. He joined in February 2019 with more than 30 years of experience in management across a range of sectors, including 10 years in the aged care, community care, disability and retirement living sectors.

Kevin also held management positions in marketing, business development and logistics in a range of industries including retail, manufacturing, consulting, telecommunications and energy sectors.

Kevin has served as the Chief Executive Aged and Community Care of Mercy Health Australia, and as the Chief Executive Officer of Holy Spirit Care Services.

He holds a Bachelor of Commerce in Accountancy and a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Canterbury. He is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and a Fellow of the CEO Institute of Australia. Kevin has also completed Catholic Health Australia’s Ministry Leadership Program.

He has a strong sense of social justice and a life-long passion for learning to improve the lives of those experiencing disadvantage. Kevin has been a Director of QCOSS since April 2019.


Linda McClelland

B.Arts, Grad Cert in Housing Management & Policy, Advanced Diploma of Community Sector Management, Diploma of Management, Diploma of Quality Auditing

Linda is a regional member and has worked with and on boards within the not-for-profit sector for 30 years. She has held numerous positions in service delivery and leadership as well as on boards of a diverse range of organisations.


At a service delivery level, Linda is passionate about the voice of minority groups and the vulnerable and supporting them in their endeavours to participate in community. At a strategic level, she has contributed to the development of sector training and workforce development, as well as regional and state-wide neighbourhood centre and housing networks and projects.


As CEO of Hinchinbrook Community Support Centre, she has grown the centre into the lead community service provider in the Hinchinbrook area. Largely, Linda attributes this to her passion for empowering others. Her passion manifests in her commitment to teaching and mentoring, having taught community services qualifications through TAFE to both senior school students and Indigenous workers from throughout North and Far North Queensland.


Rachelle Patterson

Bachelor of Psychology, Master of Suicidology, Master of Health Promotion

Rachelle is Chief Operating Officer, Human & Community Services with Lifeline Darling Downs and South West Queensland Limited. She believes every person should have the same opportunities regardless of background, education or challenges faced.

Rachelle has held a number of executive and frontline roles across out-of-home-care, mental health, research and human services. She has worked in urban, regional and remote settings across Queensland, NSW, ACT and Western Australia. Rachelle’s work across rural and remote Australia has taught her that best practice and evidence-based models are not always broadly applicable to their intended populations. It is her combined experiences working in policy environments, executive level positions and also several frontline sector roles that have brought her to this position. 


Rachelle is passionate about working with service providers, funding providers, staff and her community to develop programs and models that are flexible enough to respond to any community or individual.


Lee-Anne Simpson

Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Business (Mmt) (Hons), Graduate Certificate in Management


Bronwyn Fredericks

Dip. T(Sec), B.Educ, M.Educ, M.EducStudies, PhD along with two VET qualifications (Cert IV TAE and a Cert IV in Community Culture)

Lee-Anne is currently a Regional Manager with Carers Queensland delivering Local Area 
Coordination Services for the National Disability Insurance Scheme across Central Queensland, Sunshine Coast, Wide Bay Burnett, and Moreton Bay regions.


Lee-Anne has held several senior management positions across a range of community service organisations and developed partnerships and networks with a diverse range of stakeholders to deliver collaborative projects. 

She has worked in both service delivery and policy development across a range of project streams including, child protection, domestic and family violence services, family and relationship services and disability services.

Throughout Lee-Anne’s 20-year history working in the community services sector, she remains committed to championing equitable access to services in regional, remote and rural communities and advocating for community organisations to receive the funding and support they need to deliver them.  

Bronwyn Fredericks is a Professor and the Pro Vice-Chancellor (Indigenous Engagement) at the University of Queensland (UQ, Australia). She was previously the Pro Vice-Chancellor (Indigenous Engagement), BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance Chair in Indigenous Engagement and the Chairperson of Academic Board at Central Queensland University (CQUniversity, Australia).

In 2016, Bronwyn was appointed as the Presiding Commissioner with the Queensland Productivity Commission (QPC) to lead the Inquiry into service delivery in Queensland’s remote and discrete Indigenous communities. She additionally worked on the Inquiry into manufacturing, the Inquiry into Imprisonment and Recidivism in Queensland (2019) and the Queensland Recycling Review (2019).

Bronwyn has worked for both state and federal levels of government and has a long history of direct hands-on involvement in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community-based organisations spanning over 30 years. For example, she was Chairperson of the Bidgerdii Community Health Service for some 9 years, a Director of Anglicare Central Queensland, assisted in the establishment of community organisations, and served on numerous community committees.

Bronwyn is noted for her community-based research and translating research outcomes along with her strong practice-based commitment to social justice and improving Indigenous health, education, and life outcomes. 


Aimee McVeigh

Chief Executive Officer

B.Laws, B.Communications, Post Grad Dip in Legal Practice, and Master of International and Public Law

Aimee is QCOSS’ Chief Executive Officer, and a strong advocate for equality, opportunity and wellbeing for all Queenslanders. As a lawyer and human rights advocate, Aimee led the successful campaign for a Human Rights Act for Queensland and was a founding director of Disability Law Queensland.

Prior to joining QCOSS, Aimee worked in various senior and advisory roles, including at the Disability Royal Commission and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Women’s Legal and Advocacy Service.

Aimee has been engaged by the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples as a gender advisor and has worked with a number of non-profit organisations in Queensland, including during the Child Abuse Royal Commission. Aimee was also a state finalist for the 2017 Australian of the Year Awards, and a finalist for the 2019 Australian Human Rights Commission Human Rights Medal.


Annette Schoone

Community Service Management, Community Development and Project Management, GAICD

Annette holds the role of Company Secretary. Annette is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, holds qualifications in Human Resources, Community Service Management, Community Development and Project Management, coupled with more than 25 years’ experience in management and leadership positions, strategy and operations, governance, and service management gained in local government and the not-for-profit sectors.

bottom of page