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Meet Our Board

We're lucky at Camp Quality to have a group of dedicated professionals who freely donate their time, energy and professional expertise to Camp Quality. The Directors are responsible to the Members for the performance of the company in both the short and longer term, and seek to balance these sometimes-competing objectives in the best interest of the organisation as a whole.

The Board’s focus is to ensure the organisation is properly managed and that it remains committed to bringing optimism and resilience to every child impacted by cancer, their families, and communities through ongoing quality educational, financial, hospital, online, and recreational support programs.

A Director's term runs for three years, and they may be appointed at any time by the Board as long as they are a Member of Camp Quality prior to the appointment. A Director may resign at any time or be removed from office by special resolution passed by the ordinary Members at a general meeting convened for that purpose.

The Board draws on relevant corporate governance best practice principles to assist it in contributing to the overall charitable performance of the organisation. Day-to-day management of the organisation's affairs, and implementation of corporate strategy and policy initiatives, are delegated by the Board to the Chief Executive Officer and management.

Deborah Thomas - CEO (appointed January 2020)

ExperienceDeborah Thomas is an experienced executive and Board Director, across both the corporate and not-for-profit (NFP) sectors. With over 25 years of expertise in leadership, management and marketing skills, Deborah is the ideal person to lead Camp Quality into its next phase.

Deborah has managed some of Australia’s most popular magazine brands, including The Australian Women’s Weekly, where she was Editor-in-Chief for nine years. In 2015 she was appointed to the position of Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Ardent Leisure Group.

Throughout her time in the commercial sector, Deborah has also been involved with many national NFP organisations, including the Sydney Children’s Hospital Foundation, The Royal Hospital for Women Foundation, Father Chris Riley’s Youth off the Streets, and is a founding patron of the Taronga Conservation Foundation.  

On joining Camp Quality Deborah said, “I am honoured and excited by the prospect of working with Camp Quality and applying my skills and experience to such a worthy, trusted and important organisation. Camp Quality changes people’s lives for the better and I cannot think of a more fulfilling job than helping children and families deal with the trauma that comes with the diagnosis and treatment of cancer.”

Special Responsibilities - Member of Audit & Compliance Committee and Member of People & Culture Committee.

Kim Jacobs AM - Chairman (appointed October 2013)

Qualifications – MBA Macquarie University, LLB Sydney University.

Experience – Chairman of Inteq Limited, an Australian corporate, strategic and financial advisory house; Chairman of Local Measure, a social media analytics company; member of the Advisory Board of UTS Business School; former Chairman of the Australian Israel Chamber of Commerce; and Director of a number of private companies.

Special Responsibilities – Member of Strategy & Revenue Committee and Audit & Compliance Committee.

John Higgins AO - Director (appointed October 2006)

Experience – Chairman of the Higgins Group of Companies, a privately owned business that invests in a variety of industries in Australia and overseas. John has over 35 years’ experience investing and running companies in Australia, Europe and North America.

John is also a member of the National Gallery of Victoria Foundation Board.

He is passionate about education, having previously funded the Gerry Higgins Chair of Irish Studies and, more recently, the Chair of Positive Psychology, both at Melbourne University. From 2006 to 2012 John chaired the Melbourne Grammar School Learning & Leadership Advisory Board, which focused on all areas of learning and leadership from prep to Year 12.

Special Responsibilities – Member of People & Culture Committee.

Gary Edstein - Director (appointed October 2013)

Qualifications – Management Certificate, College of TAFE; Diploma of Marketing, CIT/Holmes College; and Executive Program, University of Michigan, GAICD.

Experience – CEO/Senior Vice President for DHL Express AU/PG; Board Chairman DHL Express Australia; Member DHL Express Management Board Asia Pacific excluding China; Director Tasman Cargo Airlines; and Director CAPEC Australia.

Special Responsibilities – Chair of Strategy & Revenue Committee.

Cameron Clyne - Director (appointed April 2015)

Qualifications – BA Sydney University.

Experience – Chairman of Camel Partners, a private advisory firm, and the Camel Foundation. Director of the Western Sydney University Foundation, The Whitlam Institute; Adjunct Professor at WSU Business School; and Patron of the Western Sydney Leadership Dialogue.

Former Chairman of Rugby Australia and Member of World Rugby Council. Former Group CEO of National Australia Bank Group and Chairman of Clydesdale Bank.

Special Responsibilities – Chair of People & Culture Committee.

David Morris - Director (appointed July 2015)

Qualifications – BEc (Accounting Major), Sydney University; LLB, Sydney University; and Harvard Business School Leadership Program.

Experience – Formerly Head of M&A and Corporate, KPMG Law Australia; Joint Global Head of M&A and Corporate, KPMG Global Legal Services; and Member of the Global Leadership Group of KPMG Global Legal Services. David is a senior corporate lawyer specialising in the provision of M&A, corporate, capital markets and corporate governance advice.

Special Responsibilities – Member of Audit & Compliance Committee & Board Member of The Oranges Toolkit.

Kate Burleigh - Director (appointed August 2015)

Qualifications – MBA University of Technology, BA Sydney University.

Experience – Current Country Manager and Director, Amazon Alexa, Australia/NZ; Member of Board of Governors, Wenona School; 2016 UTS Business School, Alumni of the Year; Master of Business in Marketing (UTS), BA (Syd Uni). Former Managing Director, Intel Australia/NZ and Director of the Australian IT Industry Association.

Special Responsibilities – Member of Strategy & Revenue Committee and People & Culture Committee.

David Arkles - Director (appointed November 2015)

Qualifications – Diploma in Business Management at Wits University Johannesburg, Advanced Management Program at Melbourne University Business School.

Experience – David has extensive global experience in the IT and Telecommunications industries with particular focus on strategy, business development and corporate change. Currently GM Sales & Marketing at Higgins Coatings, he has previously been GM Zebra Technologies in Australia/New Zealand, and Executive VP and GM of Ericsson Inc., USA.

David is a Trustee of the Progressive Jewish Cultural Fund, was Executive Chairman of The Oranges Toolkit (a subsidiary of Camp Quality), and founding director of Building An Uneven Playing Field Pty Ltd.

David is passionate about family and has been married to Jenny for 38 years. They have four children and a growing brood of grandchildren.

Special Responsibilities – Member of Strategy & Revenue Committee.

Damon Fealy - Director (appointed June 2020)

Qualifications – BInfTech Griffith University, GradDipMuTech Queensland Conservatorium, MAICD.

Experience – Damon has over 25 years’ experience in IT and business, and runs specialist boutique technology advisory practice Oakland Traleen. He has founded and successfully exited his own ICT business, and sits on the Board of Travello and several other private companies. He works with and invests in early stage and start-up companies, and sits as an Industry Fellow with the School of ICT at Griffith University.

Special Responsibilities ­– Board Member of The Oranges Toolkit.

Dr Karen Luxford - Director (appointed June 2021)

Experience: Dr Karen Luxford is the Group CEO, Australian Council on Healthcare Standards (ACHS) & ACHS International. She has extensive experience in governance, strategic planning, safety and quality and healthcare standards, engaging with a wide range of stakeholders and leading organisational change.

Dr Luxford is a senior executive in health with over 25 years’ experience in a range of leadership roles in the public, not-for-profit and private sectors. These include CEO, Royal Australasian College of Dental Surgeons; A/g CEO and Executive Director, Clinical Excellence Commission NSW; and GM of the National Breast and Ovarian Cancer Centre in Australia.

She is a Board member & President-Elect of ASQua; the former Board Chair of Endometriosis Australia (NFP charity); Board member of the Bureau of Health Information (BHI) in NSW Health; Board member of Camp Quality (NFP charity); Council member of Standards Australia; Member of the ISQua Accreditation Council; Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD); Certified Health Executive (CHE) and Fellow of the Australasian College of Health Service Management (ACHSM) and the Australian Institute of Managers & Leaders (IML). Dr Luxford is an alumni Harkness Fellow in Healthcare Policy & Practice, Harvard Medical School in Boston, USA, and is passionate about health care.