Our team

Shona Reid
Guardian/Training Centre Visitor
Shona is an Eastern Arrernte woman and comes from a family who has a long legacy of working with First Nation children, families and communities. Having previously worked in the child protection system, she has worked hard to build First Nation governance, leadership and reconciliation and playing her part in building a more culturally inclusive community; where true inclusivity is observed through the respect for diverse, meaningful and substantive relationships and engagement is grounded in honesty, integrity, transparency and truth. When she is not working, Shona is busy keeping her family of nine close, strong and connected.
Read more about Shona
Merike Mannik
Principal Advocate
Merike joined the advocacy team in November 2018, with a strong background in out-of-home care. She has worked in non-government and the public sector, including foster care placement co-ordination and support, carer assessment and support, carer approval and review, project management and legislation implementation. Family and children are the light of Merike’s life and she lives the adage “it takes a village to raise a child”. She describes herself as ‘a people-person, who is bright and bubbly and always sees the glass as half full”. She loves movies, meditation and a great cup of coffee shared with good company.
Read more about Merike
Courtney Mostert
Senior Advocate
Courtney has completed a Bachelor in Psychology and has worked for a non-government foster care agency and for the Department for Child Protection. Within out-of-home-care, she has experience in the recruitment, assessment, approval and review of foster carers, as well as the support of foster care families. Courtney enjoys watching documentaries, going out for breakfast and spending time with her friends, family and dog, Gus.
Read more about Courtney
Conrad Morris
Senior Advocate, Dual Involved
Conrad is an Narangga and Arrente man who has worked in youth justice for many years with a particular focus on supporting young Aboriginal people to navigate their way around the justice system. He is passionate about providing a voice for all Aboriginal young people by advocating strongly for their rights to be heard and upheld. He is a man that is committed to family and understands the importance of family to young people and their development and enjoys spending time with his own family and keeping healthy.
Read more about Conrad
Ashleigh Weston
After completing qualifications in social work and psychology, Ashleigh worked in a non-government organisation where she passionately committed to ensuring young people successfully transitioned from care, feeling confident, independent and enthusiastic about their future. Ashleigh then worked at the Department of Child Protection within the out-of-home care space. Ashleigh looks forward to meeting with new young people, listening to their voice, ensuring they feel heard and supported. When not working you’ll often find Ashleigh at the gym ‘pumping iron’ or walking the linear trail.
Read more about Ashleigh
Dani Court
Dani has a background in law, previously working as Children’s Representative in the Youth Court, advocating for the best interests of children who are subject to care and protection proceedings, before joining the advocacy team with the Office of the Guardian. Dani is passionate about advocating for children’s rights and in giving a voice to vulnerable children and young people and believes that every child should be afforded the opportunity to reach their full potential. When not at work, Dani enjoys reading, exercising and socialising, and especially her son, husband and dog!
Read more about Dani
Ally Pohl
Assessment & Referral Officer
Since finishing a Bachelor of Psychology, Ally has worked closely with young people in Independent Living and then for the Department for Child Protection. Ally is passionate about working with children and young people in care to support them to navigate the Child Protection system and to provide support for them to thrive and to be heard. When Ally is not working she can be found walking her dog Frank or spending time in the sun with her husband and friends.
Read more about Ally
Alan Fairley
Principal Policy Officer
Alan has undertaken policy, project and advocacy work in a number of sectors. He thinks that the most useful experts usually are those who are at the receiving end of discrimination or injustice. Alan doesn’t own a dog, but does have a teenage son who likes to go walkies. In his spare time he reads and looks at photographs and old movies.
Read more about Alan
Alicia Smith
Senior Policy Officer
Alicia has a background in law and human rights, with a strong passion for advocacy, engaging with communities and working for change. Alicia’s career has focussed on criminal justice, equal opportunity and human and children’s rights, as well as providing advocacy and education to communities and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students. When not working you’re most likely to find her at her piano or guitar – until her dogs bark to go for a walk!
Read more about Alicia
Nadia Baldassi-Winderlich
Principal Visiting Advocate
Before joining the Training Centre Visitor Unit, Nadia worked as a community lawyer with a focus on child protection, family violence, and youth crime. She’s lived in Alice Springs, Tennant Creek, and Melbourne, but is an Adelaide girl originally. Nadia is passionate about supporting young people to access their own autonomy and self-advocate. Outside of work, she loves catching up with friends, babysitting her new niece, and reading… But if the Western Bulldogs are playing, she’s glued to the TV.
Read more about Nadia
Travis Thomas
Training Centre Advocate
Travis is an Yankunytjatjara man who has worked in Youth Justice and Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services for the past 12 years where he has focused on supporting young Aboriginal people and their families to navigate their way through the youth justice and child protection systems. He is keen to provide a voice for all young people in the Kurlana Tapa Youth Justice Centre by advocating strongly for their rights and ensuring they are heard. When not working he enjoys cheering on the Adelaide Crows, playing, umpiring and coaching hockey and catching up with family and friends.
Read more about Travis
Georgia Murdock
Senior Advocate (Child and Young Person’s Visitor Program)
After completing qualifications in Psychology and Counselling, Georgia has spent the last 11 years working in Child Protection and more recently in the role of a School Counsellor. Georgia has a strong child-focused approach and is passionate about supporting young people in care to ensure their voice is heard. She works in a trauma-informed manner to ensure young people feel safe, respected and empowered. Outside of work, Georgia can be found at the beach, surrounded by family and friends.
Read more about Georgia
Hamish McKenzie
Advocate (Child and Young Person’s Visitor Program)
Originally Hamish worked as a teacher, particularly in rural and remote schools, before moving into the child protection space. Whether in schools or with the Department for Child Protection, Hamish has a strong relational work focus and firmly believes it is through forming meaningful and consistent relationships that positive outcomes can be achieved for young people. When not working, Hamish can be found hanging out with his daughter, who has him wrapped around her little finger, bike riding and spending time at the beach surfing. In between all this, Hamish has a soft spot for his pets – even if that only consists of one moody cat and four chickens!
Read more about Hamish
Em Rozee
Advocate (Child and Young Person’s Visitor Program)
Em has been working in the youth sector for the last 15 years designing and facilitating empowerment, leadership and therapeutic programs. Complimented by her outdoor education background Em enjoys supporting young people to recognise their inner strength, try new things, connect to nature and gain skills in mindfulness. Through her various roles Em has led a number of co-design initiatives and consultations with young people for both the government and non-government sectors. Em firmly believes in the power of lived experience to guide policy, drive change and promote child-centred practice. Outside of the office, Em can usually be spotted riding her bike or chasing her children at the beach.
Read more about Em
Melissa Phoenix
Administration Officer
Mel joined the Office in December 2018, following 14 years in the public service. She has a passion for people, volunteering with organisations providing rape and sexual assault services, assisting with workgroups and communication with young people. She believes that all people have the right to a voice and for someone to speak with/for them if their own voices are not easy to hear. She is committed to spending time with her family and the innate need of everyone to feel part of a family. Mel is an avid fan of Wonder Woman, a model of strength and independence, and spends much time on the hunt for new Wonder Woman items to add to her bulging display cabinet.
Read more about Mel

(c) 2021 Guardian for Children and Young People. Terms & Privacy Policy.

We acknowledge and respect Aboriginal People as the traditional owners
and custodians of the land we live and work on, their living culture and their unique role in the life of South Australia.