Our team

To achieve great things, you need a great team. The Nature Conservancy Australia team is a diverse and talented group that includes scientists, accountants, fundraisers, marketers and administrators.

The Leadership Team

Rich Gilmore, Country Director

Before joining the Conservancy, Rich was the CEO of the Balibó House Trust working on sustainable economic development in Timor-Leste. Prior to that, he was CEO of Earthwatch Australia during the time it was awarded the Prime Minister’s Award for Australian Environmentalist of the Year. Rich has also worked as a derivatives trader with Ord Minnett Jardine Fleming and in relationship management, business development and community relations with global packaging firm Amcor.

Rich graduated with a Master of Environmental Management from the University of New South Wales. He is an alumnus of both the Cambridge University Business and Environment Program and the Harvard Club of Australia Non-Profit Leadership Program. In 2011, in recognition of his role as a community leader, Rich was made a Williamson Community Leadership Fellow by Leadership Victoria. He is also a Member of the Institute of Company Directors. He commenced working at TNC in 2014 and works from our Melbourne office.

Find out more about Rich.

Dr James Fitzsimons, Director of Conservation

James has developed and overseen large-scale conservation programs and developed conservation policy in government and non-government organisations. Prior to joining The Nature Conservancy, James worked with the Victorian Environmental Assessment Council developing recommendations for public land use along the Murray River and for East Gippsland forests, and with the Victorian Department of Sustainability and Environment on protected area and conservation policy.

James has a PhD in environmental science from Deakin University. He commenced working at TNC in 2008 and works from our Melbourne office. Find out more about James.

Jodie Jansen, Director of Public Policy

Jodie has over 10 years’ professional practice in science-based public affairs, including senior roles at multinational pharmaceutical companies GlaxoSmithKline and Baxter Healthcare. More recently, Jodie worked under a grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation advocating for increased R&D investment to deliver new medicines and vaccines for diseases of the developing world such as malaria, TB, maternal and child health.

Jodie has undergraduate degrees in Law and Arts from the Queensland University of Technology and a Master of Marketing Communications from the University of Canberra. She commenced working at TNC in 2017 and works from our Melbourne office.

Simon O'Connor, Director of Finance and Operations

Simon has more than 15 years’ experience in the government, not-for-profit and corporate sectors.  He has been responsible for managing internal and external audit programs, preparation of annual accounts and the management of large banking contracts.

Simon has a Bachelor of Business in Accounting from Victoria University and is Certified Practicing Accountant.  He commenced working at TNC in 2013 and works from our Melbourne office.

Begoña Vázquez-Santos, Director of International Memberships

Begoña has worked in individual giving fundraising for the last 15 years across multiple geographies with TNC and Oxfam, as well as previously in international management consulting across the travel, pharmaceutical and financial services industries. As the Director of our USA TNC membership program (with more than a million members), she successfully introduced new fundraising channels including telemarketing, digital and face-to-face. She is currently responsible for identifying and launching individual giving markets outside the US – in Australia, Hong Kong, India and Indonesia.

Begoña has an International MBA from the University of Chicago, Booth Graduate School of Business and Economics and Business Administration Degrees from Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. She commenced working at TNC in 2006 and works from our global headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, USA.

Tony Jupp, Associate Director of Communications

Tony has worked in conservation and communications for the last 30 years in the government, private and not-for-profit sectors in areas as diverse as teaching, zoos, national parks, forestry, politics, animal welfare and energy. He’s also been actively involved in conservation projects for threatened black cockatoos in his home state of WA for many years.

Tony has a Bachelor of Science (Zoology), Post Graduate Diploma in Education and Graduate Certificate in Business Administration from the University of Western Australia. He commenced working at TNC in 2014 and works from his Perth office.

Lina Di Prisa, People and Culture Manager

Lina has worked for many years across roles in professional services, banking, insurance and finance, and has experience in managing people, human resources, leadership coaching and general management. She worked for 20 years as a paralegal in law firms. Lina puts her interest in animals to good use as a volunteer for various animal shelters.

Lina holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Human Resource Management from Deakin University, an Advanced Diploma of Legal Practice from RMIT and a Mini MBA from London School of Business, and is an International Coach Federation Certified Coach. She commenced working at TNC in 2014 and works from our Melbourne office.

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