Our People

We are led by the community

Project Platypus is governed by a volunteer Board made up of Landcare Group representatives with a range of experience, skills and local knowledge. Our Board guides the organisation’s strategic direction and priorities. We have a small team of staff, who conduct on ground habitat creation and protection works, including our fee-for-service program. We work together with our 12 Landcare groups, and hundreds of volunteers in the Upper Wimmera.

Golden hour over a native grassland near Rhymney, looking out onto the Gariwerd ranges
Golden hour over a native grassland near Rhymney, looking out onto the Gariwerd ranges

Our board members

Clive has a science leadership background, serving as Assistant Chief of CSIRO Sustainable Ecosystems. His specialty has been sustainable forest management. He has managed large teams and budgets, led multi-disciplinary international research projects, and is active in Land Covenantors Victoria. Clive and his partner Catherne steward a 145ha conservation site at Fyans Creek.

Clive Carlyle

Board Chair and Jallukar Landcare Member

Mark McKew

Board Secretary and Crowlands / Warrak Landcare Member

Peter Start

Board Treasurer

Leanne has a background in HR Management and Administration in Financial Planning. She manages a sustainable bio-dynamic farm with her husband Peter just north of Gariwerd/Grampians National Park. She strongly believes that supporting nature to thrive creates richer soils and healthier produce. She is partial to both the excellent wines of our region, and the highs of spending time in nature.

Leanne Jackman

Board Member and Northern Grampians Landcare Member

Michael is a founding member of Project Platypus and has been farming in Elmhurst since the mid-sixties. He has long been a local leader in on-farm conservation, hosting some of Project Platypus' first land rehabilitation projects including erosion control works and tree plantings. Michael works to ensure he is leaving land in better condition for the next generation.

Michael Greene

Board Member and Elmhurst Landcare Member

Charlie has qualifications in ecology and agriculture and has worked on environmental projects across Australia and overseas. She values the important work of local communities to care for the natural environment. She recently moved to Gariwerd/Grampians and joined the Halls Gap Landcare group. She enjoys observing the rhythms of nature through the seasons, both on hikes and from her backyard.

Charlie (Charlene) Tack

Board Member and Halls Gap Landcare Member

Fernanda is a biologist and holds a PhD in Political Sciences. She has many years of experience working internationally as an advisor in the intersection of environmental protection, climate change, and disaster risk. She loves reptiles, medicinal plants and to work with other humans to protect and restore ecological systems.

Fernanda Del Lama Soares

Board Member

Margot Galletly

Board Member and Jallukar Landcare Member

Jeff Parson

Board Member and Jallukar Landcare Member

Our staff

Mark holds a PhD in disease management in barley, and a degree in Environmental Management, where he researched local flora and fauna, including growling grass frogs. He is an experienced Project Manager, farmer, and long time Landcare member. He employs sustainable practices on his wool, lamb, and grain farm, including habitat protection, shelter belts and techniques for improving soil health.

Mark McLean


Julie has a Diploma of Accounting and consequently bookeeping since 2014. She also brings 30 years of natural resource management experience in the upper Wimmera to the team. A keen bushwalker she is active in the local Grampians bushwalking club and an active volunteer in the community.

Julie Andrew

Accounts Manager and Revegetation Officer

Amelia has worked as a Primary school Art/music/classroom teacher for 13 years, whilst also pursuing her pottery and business AKA, being a mum, grant writing for local schools, businesses, and community organizations. She also works as the State Grants Manager for Regional Arts Victoria, chair of Grampians Health consumer group, and manages the markets in Halls Gap.

Amelia Kingston

Events Management

Elia hold a PhD in ecology, with a speciality in scaley and crawly critters, from caterpillars and wasps, to frogs and dinosaurs. She has worked in conservation, agriculture and biosecurity, and more than anything loves helping people build personal connections to nature. She loves bringing her kit of microscopes and 'bug hunting' tools to schools, teaching kids how to survey for insects.

Elia Pirtle

Landcare Facilitator and Communications Officer

Lachlan's varied career spans tourism, health, mining, and photography. A staunch conservationist, Lachlan owns a 45 ha Grampians property, which he's working to covenant and rid of invasive species and pests. His environmental passion and ties to the community fuel his commitment to Landcare. He has called the area home since the 2000s, and has been our Field Operations Manager since 2013.

Lachlan McIntyre

Projects Manager

Lee has a diverse background, including commercial fishing in NSW, and stone masonry for the Grampians Peaks Trail. Lee and his wife, a local teacher, moved here in 2010 and are revitalizing their 10-acre Deeplead property. Lee also aids local efforts to manage pests like deer, foxes, and rabbits. His dedication stems from a deep love for conservation.

Lee Parry

Field Crew Leader

Huib is a botanical expert with a keen interest in natural history. Once a Zookeeper at Halls Gap Zoo, he now leads Concongella Landcare Group and a restoration project near Landsborough West. He dedicates his leisure to birdwatching and cultivating indigenous plants for habitat restoration. Huib is commited to local ecological improvement, starting as a volunteer before joining the Field Crew.

Huib Ottow

Field Crew Operator

Work with us

Our small team of staff works alongside passionate and knowledgeable landholders, ecologists, volunteers, students, donors and supporters. All care deeply for our local region, plants, wildlife and people who call it home. You will meet interesting and like-minded people and will feel the satisfaction of being part of a team that actively contributes to habitat restoration and wildlife conservation!

A carnivorous plant, tall drosera (Drosera auriculata) at sunset near Rhymney
A carnivorous plant, tall drosera (Drosera auriculata) at sunset near Rhymney