Leveraging the experience and expertise within the sector

Peer Learning

The For Purpose sector is in transformation as organisations seek to achieve both their purpose and commercial objectives.

One of the fundamental beliefs underpinning the Centre For Social Purpose is that the answers on how to make this transformation already exist within the sector.

With this in mind, the Operational Excellence Roundtable Series provides a forum to:


  • Gain insights from organisations that have already achieved success.
  • Leverage the experience of peers through collaborative problem-solving.

The Roundtables are for members and guests and are by invitation only.

Members attend at no charge. The Guest fee of $ 80 per person is to cover event costs.

Benefits :
• Gain insights from peers who have made progress
• Take away practical ideas
• Develop networks to progress application

Each two-hour Roundtable is hosted by a For Purpose organisation, covers a different aspect of Operational Excellence and addresses three questions :

Upcoming Roundtables

Driving Business Improvement

Explores how For Purpose organizations are using business improvement initiatives – such as Lean, Agile and Continuous Improvement – to help them achieve their purpose and commercial objectives.

Melbourne (November 19) Host: Australian Red Cross

  • EACH Social and Community : Sherisse​  Goodwin (Mgr, Governance and Executive Projects)
  • Save the Children : Adrian Stagg (Chief Information Officer)
  • YMCA Victoria : Amanda Locke (Chief Operating Officer)

Brisbane (December 2) Host: St Vincent de Paul

  • Endeavour Foundation : Greg McCluand (Continuous Improvement Manager)
  • Open Minds : Chris Shannon (GM – Strategy, Planning and Improvement)
  • Relationships Australia : Cassandra Ashton (GM, Strategy & Innovation)

Effective Volunteer Management

Volunteers are an important resource in delivering our purpose and commercial objectives.  This session explores effective practices to attract, engage and manage volunteers.


Melbourne (November 26) Host: Save The Children

  • Stroke Foundation : Suzanne Larsson (Volunteer Program Coordinator)
  • YMCA : Ang Cuy (Executive Manager, Youth Services)
  • The Salvation Army : Penny Aquino (General Manager – Volunteer Resources)

Brisbane (December 17) Host: St The Mater Foundation

  • Act for Kids : Karen McIntyre (Relationship & Fundraising Manager)
  • The Salvation Army : Ciska Burrie (Volunteer Resources Manager – QLD TAS)
  • UnitingCare Queensland : DJ Cronin (Manager, Volunteer Services)

Transition to the Cloud

Many For Purpose organisations are moving their systems to the cloud to improve access and productivity, and deliver cost savings. This session explores key success factors and potential pitfalls.


Sydney (November 22) Host: The Benevolent Society

  • Baptist World Aid : Jane Alfred (Information Services Manager)
  • Barnardos Australia : Neal Ross (Head of Technology)
  • Mission Australia : Peter Smith (Chief Information Officer)

Cyber Security

Cyber attacks can impact our clients and reputation. This session explores approaches to reduce these risks, meet regulation standards and responding quickly to data breaches.


Brisbane (November 25) Host: The Salvation Army

  • Mercy Community Services : Patrick Lilwall (Executive Director, Transformation)
  • Ozcare : John Scurr (Head of Information Technology)
  • St Vincent de Paul : Stephen Finch (IT Manager)

Metrics Supporting Purpose

Performance metrics have become increasingly important to achieve funding, drive productivity improvements and make better decisions. This session explores how organisations are using metrics to achieve their purpose.


Sydney (December 6) Host: Mission Australia

  • ChildFund : Tom Schlosser (Head of Data Analytics and Innovation)
  • Northcott : Lee Carpenter (Deputy CEO)
  • Relationships Australia : Sarah Rowley (EGM, Customer Services)
  • Settlement Services : Greg Benson (GM, Client Services and Operations)

Managing Compliance

Managing compliance is a major issue from both an administrative workload and organisation risk perspective. This session explores how For Purpose organisations manage these demands through an emphasis on business excellence.


Sydney (December 12) Host: Wesley Mission

  • Barnardos Australia : Penny Hood (Executive Manager, People & Practice)
  • CareFlight : Glenn McKeown (National Q-HSE Manager)
  • The Fred Hollows Foundation : Penny Palmer (Global Lead – Legal Governance Risk and Compliance)

Previous Roundtables

Leadership: Technology Supporting Purpose

Explores how For Purpose organizations are implementing new technology solutions to both support purpose delivery and drive cost efficiencies.

Sydney (April 3) Host: Mission Australia

• Salvation Army Aged Care: Paul Berryman (Head of Information Technology)
• Royal Far West: Jacqui Emery (Business Director)
• The Wilderness Society: Matt Brennan (Chief Operating Officer)

Melbourne (June 5) Host: Uniting Vic.Tas

• Red Cross: Noel Clement (Director; Migration, Emergencies & Movement)
• Diabetes Victoria: Lalith Abeysena (Chief Operating Officer)
• EACH Social & Community: Marcus Harvey (Previous Chief Information Officer)

Brisbane Panel (June 14) Host: Mater Foundation

• Endeavour Foundation: Andy Salmons (National Digital Marketing Manager)
• Mercy Community Services: Patrick Lilwall (Executive Director, Transformation)
• Royal Flying Doctor Service: Trent Dean (Head, Clinical Governance)

Measuring Social Impact

Impact measurement is a key priority for organizations but is also rated one of their greatest challenges. Successful organizations share insights.

Sydney (June 13) Host: The Benevolent Society

  • YMCA: Louisa McKay (Executive Leader, Community Services)
  • Mission Australia: Rachel Christie (Impact Measurement Specialist)
  • Interrelate: Sharon Grocott (Head of Research & Innovation)

Melbourne  (June 28) Host: Australian Red Cross

  • YMCA: Jacki Whitwell (Executive Manager, Impact Strategy)
  • Uniting: Kath Mackay (Divisional Manager, Community Services South)
  • Sacred Heart Mission: Leanne Lewis (General Manager, People, and Strategy)

Brisbane  (August 1) Host: St Vincent de Paul  

  • Uniting: Tom McClean (Head, Centre for Research, Innovation, and Advocacy)
  • YMCA Brisbane: Gary Adsett (Group Mgr, Social Impact) & Rebecca Duell (Impact & Innovation Team)
  • Churches Of Christ: Mike Folland (GM  – CEO Office)

Impact Investing: Bond Insights

Organizations are implementing alternative financing options to fund purpose delivery. This session provides insights on one high-profit vehicle – Social Impact Bonds – from leaders with first-hand experience.


Melbourne (May 31) Host: Save The Children

  • Australian Community Support Organization: Vaughan Winther (CEO) & Remberto Rivera (CFO)
  • Melbourne City Mission: Dave Wells (GM, Innovation, Impact & Govt)
  • Sacred Heart Mission: Catherine Harris (GM, Business Development)

Sydney (July 18) Host: The  Benevolent Society

  • Life Without Barriers: Brad Swan (Director, Strategy & Engagement)
  • The Benevolent Society: Matt Gardiner (Exec Dir, Child & Family)
  • SYC Ltd : Paul Edginton (CEO)
  • Uniting : Magdalena Liso (Head of NEWPIN – ACT and Southern NSW)

Corporate Partnerships

Corporate partnerships are an effective way to fund and implement purpose delivery, and assist corporates committed to supporting social impact. This session explores how to create mutually beneficial partnerships.

 Sydney (June 27) Host : The Salvation Army

  • ChildFund : Margaret Sheehan (Head of International Programs)
  • McGrath Foundation : Holly Masters (CEO)
  • Settlement Services : Naushin Rahman (Corporate Partnerships Mgr)

 Brisbane (July 31) Host : The Mater Foundation

  • Mater Foundation : Nigel Harris (CEO)
  • Royal Flying Doctor : Ian Finlayson (Head, Corporate Affairs)
  • The Smith Family : Chris Stevenson (Senior Business Development Manager)

Effective Volunteer Management

Volunteers are an important resource in delivering our purpose and commercial objectives.  This session explores effective practices to attract, engage and manage volunteers.


Sydney (July 30) Host: Wesley Mission

  • Salvation Army: Lucinda Gayl (Volunteer Resources Manager)
  • McGrath Foundation: Ryan Barlow (Marketing & Revenue Director)
  • Smith Family: Lauren Stocker (National Manager Volunteering)
  • Karitane: Grainne  O’ Loughlin (CEO)

Contact us for assistance

Craig Hawke

02 9478 1463