Volunteer Community Reference Group

The Volunteering Community Reference Group is established under the direction of the Hon Minister for Volunteering.  The purpose of the Volunteering Community Reference Group is to provide a direct voice on volunteering issues from the sector to government.

The Volunteering Community Reference Group will provide the Hon Minister with non-binding advice and information on trends and issues impacting the sector and feedback on the implementation of the State Volunteering Strategy.

Below are members of the Volunteering Community Reference Group:


Hon Mick Murray MLA

Minister for Seniors and Ageing; Volunteering; Sport and Recreation

Mick Murray has been a Member of Parliament since 2001 and was appointed the Minister for Seniors and Ageing; Volunteering; Sport and Recreation in the McGowan Government in March 2017.

Mr Murray has represented various parts of the South West region since entering Parliament, with numerous boundary changes giving him responsibility for the shires of Collie, Capel, Dardanup, Donnybrook-Balingup, Harvey, Boyup Brook and Boddington during his time as an MP. Mr Murray also served as a Collie Shire Councillor for 12 years before entering Parliament.

Mr Murray and wife Anna have four daughters, three grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Mr Murray is a keen recreational diver, fisherman and motorsports fanatic.

Hon Mick Murray MLA


Craig Spencer

Craig chairs the Volunteer Community Reference Group.

Craig is the General Manager Strategy and Planning at the Royal Flying Doctor Service Western Operations.

Craig is also Chair of Volunteering WA and has had a long term commitment to community service, currently holding several board and community representative roles and as an emergency services volunteer for over 17 years in both NSW and WA.

Craig believes the economic, social and cultural value of volunteering is very significant and that volunteering is an important part of the strong social fabric of our society, particularly in Western Australia where the vastness of our state often means that vital community services are delivered by volunteers.  



Tina Williams

As the CEO of Volunteering WA, the state peak body for volunteering, Tina is committed to driving VWA’s mission in leading, advancing and celebrating volunteering in WA. Tina’s work focuses on developing and leading a strong, inclusive and dynamic volunteer sector in WA that enriches our communities and makes volunteering safe, accessible and meaningful for everyone.

Tina is the convenor of the Volunteering Community Reference Group, where she provides government with a direct voice from the sector on their shared needs, interests and priorities. She is a passionate advocate for volunteers, supporting WA’s volunteering involving organisations and promoting the benefits of volunteering to grow the sector.


Volunteer Representatives

Esme Bowen

Esme has been involved in the family surf retail business for 30 years and has a background in nursing and disability services, working as a community volunteer and road safety advocate for many years. 

Esme’s volunteering has included leadership roles with Wheelchair Sports WA, Wheelchair Sports Australia, Disability Sports Australia and the Australian Automobile Association.   She currently volunteers with the RAC as Immediate Past President, Honorary Life Member, RAC Councillor and Chair of the RAC Sponsorship Committee.  Esme is also Chair of the WA Ministers Carers Advisory Council and a Board member of the Paraplegic Benefit Fund and Children’s Hospital Alumni of WA. 

Esme believes it will be a privilege to be a community representative on the Minister’s Volunteer Community Reference Group and explore the priorities, strengths and challenges of volunteering across WA and its diverse and vibrant communities.

Esme shares the vision of a stronger, more connected and resilient Australian community through volunteering and serves on the board of Volunteering Australia


Dr Rambo Ramdianee

Rambo’s volunteer career started in 1990 at Murdoch University. He completed his doctoral thesis on the motivation and management of volunteers and his post-doctoral work on the changing nature of volunteering, more specifically about the growing phenomenon of ‘Episodic Volunteering’ and what organisations can do to not only survive but thrive in this new environment.

Rambo is a long term volunteer with Make A Wish Australia and also currently involved with Camp Quality, Radio Lollipop and Catch Music. He has shared his considerable knowledge, expertise and experience with many not for profit organisations over many years, providing pro bono consulting services in the areas of  volunteer recruitment, training and retention, strategy, program effectiveness and process improvements.

Rambo believes there is a volunteer in each and every one of us, and one of his life’s missions is to unleash that volunteer in as many people as he can.


Not For Profit Representatives

Maija Hildebrand

Maija is the Voluntary Service Development and Engagement Specialist with  Australian Red Cross in Western Australia.  Her role is to lead and manage volunteers as well as leading Red Cross’ strategy on volunteering, both in the local government and non-profit sectors.

Maija has recently completed  a Masters’s degree focusing on the volunteering experiences of CaLD people and the differences between formal and informal volunteering within migrant cultures.

Maija is passionate about advocating for diverse and inclusive volunteering practices that allow people to contribute to the community in meaningful ways.  She looks forward to introducing some of the innovative volunteer projects Red Cross is working on to the reference group and learning more about the work of others.


Dan Minchin

Dan is the CEO of Chorus, the merger of the Volunteer Task Force, Community First International and Care Options. 

Dan has been an active volunteer in a wide range of settings beginning with his days at university and continuing over 25 years with various roles in sporting clubs, health and art organisations and in the  education sector.  Currently he is a member of Minister Simone McGurk’s Supporting Communities Forum, the Methodist Ladies College Council, a regular participant in the Hawaiian Ride for Youth and he volunteers with his own organisation.

Dan’s volunteering and professional experience has given him a unique insight into the needs of the most vulnerable in our community and he believes the reference group can provide advice to the Minister that is both aspirational and practical, in turn leading to improved conditions for volunteering in Western Australia.


Corporate Representative

David Hansell

David is a Consulting Director at Deloitte and the National Champion and board member of The Deloitte Foundation, Deloitte's corporate social responsibility arm.

He is currently the Chair of the Corporate Volunteer Council of WA and Chair of the University of WA Enactus Business Advisory Board.

David believes responsible contemporary businesses recognise they are an integral part of the community and corporate volunteering provides a mechanism for their staff to have a significant and enduring positive impact on the communities in which they operate.  Corporate volunteering is not designed to replace other forms of volunteering; rather, to support and enable volunteering efforts as a whole.


Research Representatives

Dr Megan Paull

Dr Megan Paull is a senior lecturer at Murdoch University where she teaches in Management, including a unit in Leading and Managing Nonprofit Organisations.

Megan has had a long affiliation with Volunteering WA, having first been involved when undertaking research on managing change in volunteer involving organisations in the 1990s.  She has been a leader and driver of the Volunteering WA Research Committee since its inception in 2001. 

Most recently Megan led a federal government funded project examining university student volunteering -  Volunteering to Learn.

Having completed her research masters and her PhD researching difficult aspects of managing volunteers, Megan prides herself on ensuring that the work undertaken in her research is communicated back to the community and to those who contributed to the research. 


Dr Patrick Dunlop

Dr Patrick Dunlop is both a Senior Lecturer in the UWA School of Psychological Science and a Registered Psychologist with endorsement in the area of Organisational Psychology.

Patrick’s research expertise lies in understanding how individuals differ from one another and how those differences play out in organisational settings.

In the context of volunteering, Patrick is currently researching the impact that volunteer recruitment messages have on the characteristics of those who are most attracted to volunteering in different roles.


Department of Communities

Ben O'Rourke

From the 1 July 2017, the new Department of Communities was formed.  This brought together the former departments of Housing, Child Protection and Family Support, Disability Services and the communities’ components of Local Government and Communities.  The focus of the new department is to better meet the needs of the community through person-centred, integrated services.

Ben’s role in the Department of Communities is as Executive Director - Inclusion Policy and Service Design, Strategy and Policy.