John Spence (BA, LLB)

Chair (2012)

John is a practising Solicitor specialising in intellectual property law (trade marks, copyright, industrial designs, patents and confidential information) and business law. John has had extensive involvement in sports administration  and committee work having previously served on the Management Committee of Sydney University Sports Union (for thirty-one years), as President of Balmain-Drummoyne District Junior Cricket Association, and as a committee member of Sydney University Cricket Club. John has actively assisted Allevia over the past 14 years, providing advice to the Board on matters such as the drafting of the Constitution. He accepted an invitation to join the Allevia Board in 2012.




Ben McKeown (MBA, BME (Hons), GAICD)

Deputy Chair (2017)

Ben is a director with substantial experience on the boards of large and small listed (including ASX 200) and unlisted companies. Ben is an experienced Chairman of boards and board sub-committees. As a director, Ben brings specific skills and expertise in corporate governance in various jurisdictions globally. He also brings strong commercial, financial, strategic and technical expertise and experience across various sectors. Ben has a strong finance, investment and fundraising background, having spent many years as a Partner or senior executive in leading private equity firms. Ben has played key leadership roles, with his experience including corporate restructuring, company development, and operating in tough macro-economic environments. Having spent all his career in the commercial sector Ben was looking to contribute more broadly. Ben felt that one avenue for him to do this was to apply his experience as a company director in the Not For Profit sector. Ben accepted an invitation to join the Allevia Board in 2017. Whilst this is his first board role in the Not For Profit sector, he had previously volunteered as a governor of a primary school in the UK, and has a strong belief in the benefit of social inclusion at all levels.




Karunanithi (Karu) Rangasamy (CPA, MAICD)

Director (2017)

Karu is a director with more than 30 years in Financial Management within the private sector. He is a professionally trained accountant and practitioner with many years of service in the leadership of senior management teams. He is enthusiastic, empathetic, proactive, caring, has balanced decision making skills and has a flexible style which allows him to interact with peers of all ages and skills. Having spent many years in the private sector, Karu was aspiring to shift his focus back to the not-for-profit sector to contribute his experience and tacit knowledge in building social enterprise organisations. He has been an active youth worker and has served in the leadership teams of national bodies, contributing immensely towards their operational development. Currently he is serving the St. Vincent de Paul Society community as a Compeer Volunteer and Ambassador. In an unofficial capacity he also provides leadership and mentoring to the Malaysian community living in Western Sydney.




Clare Pearson (MBA,  MChn&AdlsWlf, BA (Hons), BSSc(PsychCnslgWlf), GradDipNFPMgt, DipChnServ)

Director (2018)

Clare is a director with more than 16 years in the community service sector. Over the past 13-years, she has worked in a range of positions (including executive roles) within the community sector. This valuable experience, coupled with her formal qualifications and previous board experience, has allowed her to develop a rich understanding of the unique needs and challenges faced when supporting children and families stemming from challenging and/or disadvantaged backgrounds, suffering chronic illness and/or disability. She has worked actively in the front-line as a Disability Support Worker, a Child Protection Caseworker, and most recently as an executive leader in children’s services and a CEO of a disability sector not-for-profit organisation. During her career she has gained experience in organisational management, leadership, and governance, and brings valuable experience in the transition of service providers and people with a disability to the National Disability Insurance Scheme. Her key areas of expertise include Early Intervention, Community Partnerships, Education and Training, Fundraising, Leadership & Development, Client/Customer/Partner/employee engagement, Business growth, review and analysis, quality and sustainability, Change management, and Risk mitigation. Clare has spent her entire career working in the community sector – seeking ways to make a difference in the lives of children, families, and people from disadvantaged backgrounds, both domestically and internationally. She actively volunteers her time, raising funds for worthy causes.




Katie Choi (BEc, LLB, LLM, GAICD)

Director (2018)

Katie joined the Allevia Board in 2018. She brings to the Allevia Board extensive experience in the legal and financial services industry working with major corporate and government organisations across a wide range of sectors including investment bank, venture capital, social and community housing, property and infrastructure, renewable energy, oil and gas, mining resources, and insurance. She is currently the Legal Director at Clean Energy Finance Corporation. Her past roles include Division Director of Macquarie Bank and Corporate Counsel of General Electric. She has solid experience in both private and public sectors, including NFP entities, and has strong expertise in legal advisory, corporate governance, risk management, regulatory advice and compliance, project management, operations improvement and strategic planning.




Karen Gray (BDipSM,BMath, DipEd, GAICD)

Director (2018)

Karen is an engaging and results driven business leader with an extensive background in sales and leadership, in transforming business functions and a proven ability to navigate the complexities and challenges that a business environment can present. She joined the Allevia Board in 2018, and is recognised for her ability to think, plan and work strategically, whilst driving customer focused, commercial and operational execution. With a breadth of leadership experience and capability, and a strong people focus, Karen has a reputation for delivery on a broad and dynamic range of business requirements, linked to long-term strategies and built around positive outcomes for customers, employees and the business. She currently hold a senior executive position with BUPA.




David Sarkis (BEc, GAICD)

Director (2018)

David has over 25 years experience in the financial industry across Australia, Japan, and Hong Kong, managing multi-asset portfolios. His roles have seen him execute and advise on discretionary investments, product offerings, asset allocation and portfolio construction

He has provided investment advisory solutions to private banks, corporate and institutional clients on structured investment transactions

and has demonstrated strong partnerships at multiple levels of the organisations he has worked for seeking, implementing and negotiating opportunities. David is the CEO and CIO of Silver Tree Investment Management, the Chair of Silver Tree Asset Management (HK) and a director of Silver Tree Cayman Limited. He is a special advisor to the Boards of Levitas Capital (Australia) and Conduit Securities (Singapore). David has a strong interest in governance of companies for social purpose, and brings to Allevia strong skills in leadership, finance, strategy, compliance, and business sustainability, ethics, and integrity.




Mahesh Enjeti (BSc (Hons), PGDM (MBA), MAICD, FIML, FAMI) 

Director (2018)

Mahesh joined the Allevia Board in 2018. As a professional senior executive, he is a high-level strategist with 25+ years’ corporate experience gained in different geographies and diverse sectors. As a consultant (Managing Director, SAI Marketing Counsel PL and Advisor to Bubblefish Creative Brand Building), he provides game-changing brand building advice to clients operating globally in

virtually every sector. Mahesh is a part-time Academic associated with the AGSM, the SP Jain Global School of

Management and the Sydney Graduate School of Management (Western Sydney University) as Adjunct Faculty. He has directorship experience on the Board of the Australian Marketing Institute. Mahesh brings to the Board strong skills in strategy, innovation, marketing, brand building, leadership, stakeholder management, and communication.


Justin James (MBA, GradCertSIP, CertGMgt, ISIP, GAICD)

Director (2018)

Joining the Board in 2018, Justin is currently a senior executive with Bupa A&NZ, holding the role of Director, Customer Growth for Health Insurance. He also has first line responsibilities for the regulated Health Insurance business as Director, Conduct and Risk. Prior to Bupa, Justin has held several Senior Executive and Leadership roles across financial services in Australia. Justin has a keen working interest in areas of ethical customer practices and conduct reform in B2C industries, specifically working with the choices emanating from artificial intelligence and digital platforms that target customer end users. Having recently completed study focusing on social entrepreneurship, Justin is keen to work with businesses that have an important social role. He strongly believes that care for our most vulnerable are vital in building better communities. Justin has been a volunteer with the NSW Government funded SPOT Program, which targets better animal welfare and education across schools.