Committee, Staff & Advisors

18 Nov 2019

Back

Board Members

Kym McDonald – President

Kym is the founder of Yogic Wisdom. Kym teaches Yoga and Yoga Therapy within the tradition of Krishnamacharya, combined with Ayurveda the science of life, for the ultimate potential for each student. The ancient Yogis believed that for an individual to reach their highest potential a combination of Yoga for the mind, Ayurveda for the body and meditation for the higher self provides the perfect set of tools for freedom and wellbeing. Kym is also the founder of the Karma Yoga Community which provides meals daily for 250 children at the Ashraya School and orphanage in Bangalore, regular events on donation bases are held at Yogic Wisdom in the spirit of service.

Gabrielle Boswell – Vice President

Gabrielle has been teaching yoga since 2002 and her greatest passion is sharing the joy and benefits of yoga with others. She is co-owner of Bhava Yoga and Dance Centre in Warrandyte where she teaches regular yoga and meditation classes, workshops and offers private yoga therapy consultations. She runs a 12 month Yoga teacher training program and facilitates a 30-hour post-graduate course in Anatomy Fundamentals.

 

 

Rebel Tucker – Secretary

Rebel is a qualified naturopath of over 25 years and a yoga teacher of 7 years. She has been practising yoga for over 35 years since her mum introduced her at the age of 12. She is a level 2 member with Yoga Australia and is currently extending her studies in yoga to become a yoga therapist. Passionate about research and ongoing education in the field of natural health and yoga, she particularly finds the philosophy and meditation practices of yoga to be the most supportive in her own life and for her students. Rebel believes that ongoing professional development is fundamental for yoga teachers and that belonging to a membership group that encourages learning and supports yoga teachers with the business side of things is incredibly helpful. She comes to the Board of Yoga Australia as Secretary and hopes to support Yoga Australia in continuing to grow the community of teachers and therapists and further develop the resources and support available to members.

 

Tamara Ogilvie – Treasurer

Tamara Ogilvie is a mother, business analyst, writer, yoga teacher and owner of Yogala – a Flow and Yin yoga studio in Maroubra Junction.

Inspired by the calm yoga brings to her perpetually busy life, Tamara completed the British Wheel of Yoga foundation course in London (2009) and qualified as a YA teacher through training at Rose Bay Yoga studio in Sydney (2011).

As a chartered accountant (ACA with the Institute of Chartered Accountants England and Wales) Tamara served as Treasurer and then Vice President of Yoga Australia from 2013 to 2017. She is now back as Treasurer supporting Yoga Australia through another transition of new leaders.

 

Kathleen Williams – VIC

Kathleen is a passionate yoga student and has been since discovering the benefits while travelling through Japan in 2017. Kathleen has a legal and business background with a Bachelor of Laws and a Masters of Business Administration. She has specialised in risk, compliance and dispute resolution within the financial services industry over the past 9 years. Kathleen is a Certified Risk and Compliance Practitioner with GRCI and an Associate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Combining these skills and experience with her love for Yoga, Kathleen is energised by the opportunity to contribute towards the vision of Yoga Australia through her work on the board.

Claire Holloway – TAS

Claire brings the logical and strategic approach of an engineer to her work. She has held business improvement and board/committee roles across Queensland, Western Australia, Northern Territory and now Tasmania.
With strong communication skills and an approachable yet direct style, Claire enjoys facilitating workshops and presenting to teams. She finds simple, relevant and audience-tailored language allows her to effectively share yoga with her students. Claire believes that there can never be too many yoga teachers, and is passionate about supporting current and aspiring yoga teachers in their service to their students.

National Management Committee Members

Jenny Berrill – ACT

Jenny is a member of the National Yoga Australia Management Committee on behalf of the ACT, and the Business of Yoga and Peak Body Working Groups. Jenny had a long career as a health professional (registered nurse, midwife and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner) and in senior health policy, strategy and program management. She has both undergraduate and postgraduate tertiary qualifications. After a period of being an academic at the ANU (College of Business), she retired from full-time work and decided to move from being a student in yoga classes to one as an instructor. She also has a secret life as an actor in TV series such as Rake and has done both TV and print advertising. Jenny utilises the knowledge gained as a health professional to support her yoga teaching, especially for special needs populations. All students offer her challenges when preparing a yoga practice; this she finds both stimulating and enjoyable.

Daniela Laucht – NSW

After working for ten years in the education system, Daniela has immersed herself full-time into the teachings of Yoga. As a Yoga Teacher and Yoga Therapist, she has experience in facilitating a variety of group classes, from kids at schools, teenagers recovering from drug and alcohol abuse, people managing the effects of Scoliosis, to the residents of Dementia care. Moreover, Daniela has worked privately with people experiencing various health conditions, such as cancer, anxiety and depression, chronic pain, Endometriosis and musculoskeletal injuries. With her broad experience and her passion for making Yoga accessible to everyone, Daniela is excited to chair the Yoga for Children Working Group and work as the NSW National Management Committee Member.

Robert Raneng – QLD

Having spent a lifetime within the health and wellness industry firstly as a Registered Nurse and Midwife, Robyn’s love of wellness led her to yoga. Yoga began for Robyn as personal enjoyment, realising the benefits quickly led onto a view of continuing to help people as a method of preventative medicine. Obtaining initially her Certificate IV/level 2 and prenatal yoga instructor qualifications, continued on to her Graduate Diploma in Yoga Therapy qualification. She now continues to utilise her wide scope of skills and experience coaching and inspiring people to an optimal lifestyle. Robyn now enjoys utilising and furthering her knowledge and skills with her various roles with Yoga Australia, presently as NMC and the YTWG.

Vittala Shettigara – SA

Vittala has been teaching Yoga at Yoga Spirit Studios since completing a 500 hours Certificate of Hatha Yoga Teacher Training in 2015. He has also completed Level 1 Somatic Exercise Coach Training and Level 1 iRest Yoga Nidra Training. Apart from understanding the intrinsic beauty and life values of Yoga he is interested in following medical/scientific research in Yoga. Before becoming a Yoga teacher, Vittala had worked for the Australian Department of Defence as a Senior Research Scientist. He is keen to bring a rigorous scientific approach to enquiry into Yoga so that it is accepted by the wider community.

Jen Barron – TAS

Amanda Owen – VIC

 

Sara Evans – WA

As a student of yoga for more than 20 years, she is inspired to flow in a way that invokes our intuitive nature through movement, she offers up this experience to other students through her carefully crafted sequencing: a fluid and feminine exploration of traditional asana and pranayama.  With a special interest in yoga for women, she is arguably Perth’s most experienced pre and postnatal yoga teacher, bringing Bloom Yoga to life in 2011 as the first and the only studio of its kind in the Northern Suburbs, offering intimate yoga classes that cater for all seasons of life.   With more than a decade of sharing her love of yoga, Sara’s classes are inclusive, inspiring and most of all – playful, tapping into our innate sense of joy!

Office Team

Let’s introduce you to the team who provide the best of support for members, yoga schools, teacher trainees and the general public while ensuring the ‘best-practice’ management of the day to day operations of the Association.

Shyamala Benakovic – Interim CEO

(new CEO will start in January 2020)

Shyamala is a qualified Yoga Teacher, having completed the Advanced Diploma of Yoga Teaching in 2008. She started teaching in July 2008 before graduation and currently teaches to children, seniors and corporate clients.

Before becoming a Yoga Teacher, Shyamala worked as a Management Consultant. She has over fifteen years experience in this field and has worked for local and International organisations. This experience has equipped her with strong management and administrative skills, which she brings to Yoga Australia.

Shyamala takes pride in her role as CEO of Yoga Australia. She is in the Yoga Australia office Monday through to Thursday ensuring Yoga Australia members are well serviced.

Shyamala is in the office from Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday

Georgia Highfield– Comms & Events Coordinator

Georgia organises our Continuing Professional Development Events, manages our social media accounts and creates our eNewsletters. She has been a yoga enthusiast for many years, loves walking her dog Freddie and spends her free time baking vegan treats for the office.

She is experienced in sales and marketing, with strong skills in customer relations, problem solving and management. With a product design and marketing degree, she is passionate about planning high-quality events and delivering engaging and relevant content for our members. She has loved spreading the benefits of Yoga and advocating for our teachers, and can’t wait to keep inspiring our members and celebrate yoga.

Jackie Rogers – Membership Manager

Jackie is no novice to membership management and customer service with over ten years experience in the role; she’s responsible for the smooth day-to-day running of the Yoga Australia Membership Department. Her responsibilities encompass many aspects of our business including memberships, billing and customer service. Her incredible organisational skills keep our team running smoothly.

In her spare time, Jackie enjoys spending time with her family and is passionate about her health and fitness. Jackie’ s calm and happy demeanour sets the perfect undertone to our humming office.

Jackie is in the office Tuesday and Thursday’s

Hayley Uberti – Membership Admin

Hayley has newly joined the team as our Membership Coordinator after many years of experience with customer service through a variety of admin, hospitality positions and running her own yoga studio business in Bath, UK whilst living there in 2016/2017.

As a former professional dancer with two decades of dance training and teaching, Hayley transitioned into the yoga community six years ago after her career came to a halt from injury.

Hayley is now a passionate yoga teacher and forever student, if you can’t find her in the studio she will be outdoors taking in the sunshine or cooking up a vegan storm at home.

Hayley is in the office Monday, Thursday and Friday

Wendy Lim – Events Coordinator

Wendy is a passionate Yoga Teacher and creator of PT for the Mind, who in a past life was a Chemical Engineer. She personally loves the mental benefits that yoga brings and considers herself a lifelong student of yoga. Her current fascination is guiding people through inner exploration in Restorative Yoga. Her experience organising and managing projects and her interest in yoga are assets she brings to the Events team. Wendy is a big foodie, loves cooking and spending time growing anything edible (herbs, veggies, fruits, etc). She has three happy free ranging chickens who bring her lots of daily joy. Wendy is in the office on Thursdays.

Kate Beath – Marketing & Communications Manager (On Maternity Leave)

With over 5 years working in health and wellness based roles and a Bachelor of Communications and a Masters of Nutrition under her belt, Kate is well equipped to help drive growth and develop initiatives in an industry that she loves. With a background in PR, Marketing and Project Management she brings a varied skill set and wealth of knowledge to the organisation.

Kate loves all thing food and wellbeing and can be generally be found cooking, eating out, looking at recipes, doing pilates or yoga or attempting to run.

Council of Advisors

The Yoga Australia Council of Advisors (YACA) is an honorary group of respected leaders in the field of Yoga and related professions. We are grateful for our Advisors’ independent, authoritative opinions on critical matters related to the operations of our Association and the teaching of Yoga in Australia. Appointment to the Council of Advisors is regarded by the association as an expression of honour and respect.

  • Di Lucas
  • Julianne Wantrup
  • Suzanne Fletcher
  • Leigh Blashki
  • Paul Ellison
  • Janet Lowndes
  • Jean Byrne
  • Tamara Ogilvie
  • Deb Roberts
  • Merryn Lee Perez

State and Regional Coordinators

ACT – Sarah Nuttridge

ACT – Kellie Toohey

NSW New Castle – Renee Walker

NSW Woolongong – Merryn Lee Perez

Byron Bay – Flo Fenton

QLD – Robyn Raneng

SA- Tina Shettigara

VIC – Agnieszka Maminska- Gray

WA – Heather Robbins

TAS – Matrika Egan

TAS – Diane Mooy Summers

New Zealand – Heather Robinson

Sign up for Our Newsletter

loader