About CISVic

Our Board

Our dedicated and experienced Board of Directors brings together diverse expertise and a shared passion for our cause. Committed to guiding our organization towards success, they provide valuable leadership, strategic vision, and governance. Meet our esteemed Board members below.

Leanne Petrides

President

Leanne is a non-practising psychologist with over 30 years’ experience working in a variety of roles in the community sector, including housing and child protection work. She has been the Executive Officer of the Community Information and Support Cranbourne since 1999 and has also been employed as a teacher by Chisholm Institute for 25 years. Leanne has experience in training staff, both professional and voluntary, across a range of disciplines.

Since working at CISS, Leanne has been instrumental in advocating to better meet the needs of a growing, vulnerable population. Under her direction, the agency has grown to become the largest provider of emergency relief and free counselling services in Casey South. Leanne is actively involved with raising the profile and needs of the Cranbourne and Casey South communities and aims to continually inform government and lobby for social change to benefit those in most need.

Leanne works very closely with Casey Council, contributing actively to additional projects and Committees at Council’s request.

Ben Smith

Vice President

Chandana Narayan CPA

Treasurer

Anne Catanese

Anne has worked in the community sector for many years, and prior to that, in the adult multicultural education sector where she held a variety of roles including senior management.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts, Diploma of Education, Post Graduate Diploma of TESOL, and Advanced Diploma in Business Management. During her time in the community sector, Anne managed the community services programs at Springvale Community Aid & Advice Bureau (now South East Community Links). These included emergency relief, information & referral, volunteering, and settlement services. Anne was the Manager of Chelsea Community Support Services, where she led her team in the delivery of generalist support services to vulnerable & disadvantaged people. She has extensive experience, knowledge & passion in working with CALD communities, and has participated in a range of external committees & advisory groups including Board member of South East Migrant Resource Centre, and Chair of Adult Community & Further Education Council.

Hiyah Rahman

Hiyah is an enthusiastic and committed community services leader, with over than 20 years of experience leading programs for culturally diverse communities, recently arrived migrants, people seeking asylum and refugees. Consistently seeking social justice and equity, endeavouring toward an inclusive society and fairness for everyone.

Hiyah is committed to gender equality, equity and human rights, which is evident in her research, advocacy, conduct and volunteer work. She enjoys working with people to align their strengths with their role in assisting organisations in achieving their goals.

Hiyah has first-hand life experience; living the experience of settling in a new country helped her live and understand the needs and challenges faced by new migrants.

Ian Parker

Ian graduated with a PhD in Physics from Monash University after completing BSc (Hons) and Dip Ed at the University of Melbourne. He subsequently spent nearly 20 years with APM/Amcor before returning to Monash University, delivering lectures in commercial paper making and paper properties to Masters Degree students, raising funds for research and supervising research students. In 1994 he was asked to take on the additional role of representing both Australia and New Zealand on the ISO technical committee for pulp and paper industry standards and for many years chaired the Australian committee responsible for these standards. While recently relinquishing these roles he continues involvement with ISO as convenor of a working group responsible for the revision of a group of standards.

After official retirement Ian joined BANSIC, the Heidelberg support and information agency, and took on the role of President during a difficult period in the life of the organisation. With the experience in this role he joined the board of CISVic and, as a board member, seeks to use his specific skills to assist CISVic in its critical support and advocacy for the disadvantaged members of Victorian society. From time to time he has also chaired church leadership groups.

Together with his wife, Ian enjoys spending time interacting with their grandchildren. Although his days of active participation in sport are in the past, he continues to enjoy choir singing and listening to music, reading, genealogy and gardening, particularly with productive plants and Australian natives.

Jenny Elvey

Jenny is the general manager of Bendigo Family and Financial Services Inc.
with over seventeen years’ experience in leading the agency, seeing Shepparton Family and Financial Services open in 2019 and this year Cobram Family and Financial Services open.

Jenny has led the agency’s as General Manager and Financial Counsellor as well as providing supervision and support for ER and NILs workers. Jenny regularly conducts Financial Literacy education workshops in schools, TAFE’s and to the long term unemployed though various community organisations and is now working closely with mental health services providing at call financial counselling. Jenny holds a Diploma Community Welfare Work; Diploma Community Services Financial Counselling; Diploma Counselling; BA Visual Arts; No Bullshit Therapy and Mental Health First Aid for Financial Counsellors and is currently a member of FCVic and the Australian Counselling Association.

Jenny is also a member of Strathfieldsaye CFA and was awarded (2014) the National Emergency Medal for her Peer Support Work with the CFA during the Victorian fires 2009.

Sharon Henderson