Meet our Board


Nova is managed by a voluntary Board of Women, with members drawn from professional fields and various community organisations. They bring a vast range of qualifications, knowledge, expertise and professionalism and have great commitment and passion about the work that Nova does. Our board sets the strategic direction that enables our dedicated and committed team to achieve its vision and purpose. We are proud to introduce you to our current board.




Name: Lee-anne Holmes

Position on Board:  Chairperson

Current Professional Role:  Executive Officer at The Canopy

What are you passionate about?  I am passionate about sector development that is focussed on ensuring continuous improvement in the delivery of services to families, individuals and communities.


Name: Lianne Dean


Position on Board: Vice Chairperson


Current Professional Role: Project Manager, Australian Taxation Office


What are you passionate about? Safe and secure housing is a human right and yet in our community there are many women and children who do not have access to safe, secure and affordable housing. I want to contribute to changing this situation and work towards a community where women and children feel safe, secure and confident.

Lianne D

Name: Louise Rak


Position on Board: Secretary


Current Professional Role: Strategic Development and Partnerships Manager, University of Newcastle, Centre of Excellence for Equity in Higher Education


What are you passionate about? Louise's work role entails managing stakeholder relationships and the strategic development of education and equity programs, Louise is also Program Developer for the Live, Learn, Grow project that supports students from an out of home care experience to access higher education. Other areas of work include project managing a new Department of Social Services funded program aimed at working with young people under 18 who perpetrate domestic and family violence acts against parents, carers and partners. Louise’s extensive experience in community services has driven her commitment to equity and social justice.

Louise R

Name: Raylene Ableson


Position on Board: Treasurer


Current Professional Role: Chartered Accountant and SMSF Specialist Adviser


What are you passionate about? I am passionate about women and children living safe and having a place they can call home.  This is not a privilege but a basic human right. 

Raylene D

Name: Katy Mooney


Position on Board: Board Member, Public Officer


Current Professional Role: Sparke Helmore Regional Pro Bono & Community Manager


What are you passionate about? While it seems like a simplification I consider that my passion and drive for working in this sector are best summed up by Dr Seuss in the Lorax…“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, Nothing is going to get better. It's not.”

Katy M

Name: Kate Davies


Position on Board: Board Member


Current Professional Role: Executive Officer for Community Disability Alliance Hunter, Conjoint Academic at University of Newcastle


What are you passionate about? I’m driven by the goal of social justice, and women supporting other women is one of the most effective strategies for achieving this goal! I’ve worked throughout Asia Pacific in public health and community development roles, as well as throughout Australia. Through this work I’ve seen that keys to improving equality of health, education and economic outcomes, are partnership, respect and people being given every opportunity to shape their own lives

Kate D

Name: Kelly Drury


Position on Board: Board Member


Current Professional Role: Manager Family Services, Muloobinba Aboriginal Corporation


What are you passionate about? I’ve worked in Aboriginal Affairs, education, and the family service sectors.  I am passionate about working towards social and economic prosperity for Aboriginal women, and a society that acknowledges, appreciates and values Aboriginal cultural history and experiences

Kelly D

Name: Sophie Hedges


Position on Board: Board Member


Current Professional Role: Social Worker


What are you passionate about? Committed to working towards a safe; respectful and equal community. I am strongly passionate about breaking down the barriers that exclude people from accessing our basic human rights and reducing the stigma associated around homelessness and mental health. 


Name: Kelly Hansen


Position on Board: CEO


Current Professional Role:  CEO Nova for Women and Children


What are you passionate about? I am passionate about achieving a fair and just society, where gendered poverty and gendered inequality no longer exist. A society that ensures women and children live without the fear of violence. A society that cares about the most vulnerable in our community and considers shelter as a human right.

Kelly H