Our facilitators

Our workshops are run by highly experienced facilitators with expertise in different areas of public and community services.

Gary Dawson, OAM

Gary is a senior facilitator with more than 30 years’ experience as a caseworker, investigator and manager in the community and disability services and education sectors. Gary worked at the NSW Ombudsman for 16 years in investigation, community services and complaint-handling management roles. Gary now specialises in the design and delivery of complaint-handling and investigations curriculum. In 2021, he received an Order of Australia Medal for services to ethnic and cultural communities.

Facilitation expertise: Complaint handling, investigations and administrative law

Don Sword

Don is a complaint-handling specialist and advocate for people experiencing homelessness in Sydney. He teaches law and ethics at the Sydney Institute of TAFE. Among his many appointments, Don is a member of the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (Guardianship Division), the NSW State Parole Authority, and the Review Committee of the NSW Legal Aid Commission. This diverse experience has given him an in-depth understanding of the intricacies of working in the NSW public and community sectors.

Facilitation expertise: Complaint handling

Jennifer Leslie

Jennifer brings a background in the community services sector to her work with the NSW Ombudsman. An expert coach and facilitator, she has particular expertise in the disability services space with a focus on the rollout of the NDIS. Jennifer has more than 40 years’ experience leading, managing and facilitating change and growth among individuals and teams.

Facilitation expertise: Complaint handling

Paddy Coombes

Paddy is a highly experienced facilitator. She brings specialist experience in mental health, child protection, NSW Health and the community justice and corrections settings to her work as a facilitator. Having worked in a range of social work, psychology, management and adult education roles, she has developed high-level conflict management and communication expertise that directly inform her facilitation approach.

Facilitation expertise: Complaint handling

Sandra Duke

Sandra is a public interest disclosures (PID) specialist with more than 10 years’ experience as a facilitator and educator for the NSW Ombudsman. She was instrumental in establishing the PID Unit within the Ombudsman’s office and developing the Ombudsman’s PID e-learning modules and in-person training packages. Sandra has delivered PID training to state and local public authorities across NSW.

Facilitation expertise: Public interest disclosures

Krista O’Sullivan

Krista brings deep experience of health and social services systems from her 14 years working across health service delivery and government. She has expertise in several health law subjects including the management of coronial inquests, serious incidents in mental health services, and best practice management of complaints. Krista has worked to resolve several high profile and complex complaints in aged care and mental health services and has advised government on complex complaint matters. An excellent communicator, Krista is highly skilled in stakeholder engagement and training delivery. As a mediator, Krista’s expertise in complaints management is built on a foundation of strong communication and conflict resolution skills as well as a deep understanding of consumer psychology and behaviour.

Facilitation expertise: Complaint handling and investigations

Janina Boughey

Janina Boughey is an Associate Professor in the UNSW Faculty of Law, an ARC DECRA fellow, and the Director of the Administrative Law and Justice Project in the Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law. Janina teaches and researches in Australian, Canadian and UK public law. Her work focusses on whether administrative law principles and institutions are 'fit for purpose' in light of the way modern governments function. She has previously worked in a number legal, policy and research positions including in the Administrative Law section of the Commonwealth Attorney-General's Department, as a researcher in the Department of the Senate, and as Chair of Social Security Rights Victoria.

Facilitation expertise: Administrative Law and Investigations