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Goodstart announces new board appointments

Government and sector

Goodstart has announced the appointment of two new directors. 

Tony Nicholson, formerly Chief Executive of the Brotherhood of St Laurence and Sir Kevan Collins, a globally respected early learning and education expert, will be joining the Goodstart board.

Goodstart Chair Michael Traill said he was delighted to welcome the new directors. 

“At the heart of Goodstart’s mission is to drive better outcomes for Australia’s children, with a particular focus on those who come from backgrounds of exclusion.  Tony Nicholson brings to our board a life of commitment and understanding of the needs of excluded Australians.  He has a deeply grounded perspective on policy and advocacy and we look forward to his contribution.”

Sir Kevan Collins has been the founding Chief Executive of the Education Endowment Foundation in the United Kingdom and is a globally regarded expert in building evidence platforms for understanding key drivers of educational performance.   

“We have had the opportunity to benefit from Kevan’s deep experience through his membership of the Goodstart Global Thought Leaders Group.   We know he can bring to the Goodstart board and senior management team a breadth of experience and a passion for the Goodstart mission,’’ Mr Traill said.

Mr Traill also indicated that consistent with the high standards of governance and planning at Goodstart, further announcements in relation to board succession would be announced later in the year. 

“Consistent with the mission and purpose of Goodstart and our four non-profit founding partners - The Benevolent Society, The Brotherhood of St Laurence, Mission Australia and Social Ventures Australia – we are committed to ensuring we have a thoughtful and strategic approach to succession planning on the Goodstart board.

"Regular board renewal is mandated in Goodstart’s constitution. Aligned with that, and reflecting a considered process of review with the board in consultation with the founding partners, there will be further board renewal changes to be confirmed within the next several months.”

Sir Kevan has worked in the UK public service for over 30 years becoming the first EEF chief executive in October 2011, having previously been chief executive in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. Prior to this role he led a varied and distinguished career in education – starting off as a primary school teacher in London, leading the English Primary Strategy as national director, and then serving as director of Children’s Services at Tower Hamlets.

Sir Kevan has international experience working in Mozambique, supporting the development of a national literacy initiative in the USA and advising on the development of a national early years initiative in Australia. He completed his doctorate focusing on literacy development at Leeds University in 2005.  He is a visiting professor at the University of London and was knighted for services to education in 2015.

Mr Nicholson is a senior executive in the social services and policy sector with 27 years’ experience in leadership of diverse and complex community organisations. This has involved a passion for, and a strong record in, service development and innovation, research and policy analysis and compelling advocacy on behalf of those disadvantaged in our community.

In his more than 13 years as Executive Director of the Brother of St Laurence initiated and drove a strategy that gave the organisation’s vocation contemporary relevance by focusing on transition points across the life course that entail particular risks and opportunities associated with the modern economy.

He expanded research and evaluation capability through the establishment of a major partnership with the University of Melbourne and established a national service footprint through innovative models of networked approaches to service delivery involving partnerships with over 120 local community organisations in every state and territory.
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