Board Members 2021-2022

President: Naomi Indigo (She/Her)

Naomi Profile1

Naomi is a PhD graduate in the field of Ecology and is currently employed as a Zoos Victoria presenter and a post-doctoral research assistant for the Threatened Species Recovery Hub.

Naomi is particularly passionate about ecological research, animal welfare and two-way-science. She endeavours to work with groups collaboratively, building capacity to address the social, economic, and environmental registers of biodiversity conservation.


Vice President: Vishnu Ramachandran Menon (He/Him)


Vishnu is a cliched South Indian boy (from Kerala) with a degree in engineering who moved from Munich to Melbourne under the false assumption that Melbourne is just another warm city in Australia. Vishnu is a PhD student at Uni Melbourne studying the effects of fire and invasive predation (foxes and feral cats) on native mammals in south-west Victoria. His main interests lie in predator-human conflicts in arid environments. Favourite animal/plant that also best describes Vishnu : Elephants and Banyan tree.


Secretary: Jarrod Mckenna


Jarrod recently submitted his PhD in reproductive biology at Monash uni. 

He has explored the role of assisted reproductive techniques (ARTs) such as IVF and cell cryopreservation for the treatment of fertility, but also their role in species conservation. He believes ARTs are the way of the future, and require a lot more discussion about, and investment in!



Treasurer: Cherese Sonkkila

Cherese Bio

Cherese Sonkkila is a socio-ecological researcher and science communicator. She is passionate about understanding and strengthening the connection between people and the more-than-human world. She is the Communications and Engagement Officer at Remember The Wild, where she crafts inspiring content about nature. She is also a Research Assistant at the Centre for Urban Research at RMIT where she is investigating how people relate to their local urban creeks. 



Committee Members 2021-2022

General Director: Kylie Soanes


Kylie was the 2019-2020 the Chapter President, and a research fellow at the University of Melbourne. Her research investigates creative and practical ways to conserve biodiversity in urban environments.

Research blog:



General Director: Lee Harrison 

Lee Profile pic

Lee Harrison is an urban ecologist with an interest in integrating ecological theory into city strategy and operations. She has a background in ecological consulting and research, with a particular emphasis on the impacts of urban and linear infrastructure on wildlife. She believes management of novel ecosystems requires novel thinking.



General Director: Paul Ferraro

Paul Profile Pic

Paul’s interest in nature and conservation grew from a childhood spent exploring the wilds of East Gippsland. He was lucky enough to turn this passion into a profession; and has spent time at Melbourne Museum, Trust for Nature, DEWLP, plus a couple of universities along the way. Paul currently works on Victoria’s threatened species policy and enjoys meandering among the nature spaces of Melbourne’s inner west.



Conservation Officer: Linda Riquelme (She/Her)

Linda proficle pic

Linda is a PhD student with the Quantitative and Applied Ecology Group at the University of Melbourne. She is interested in applying research to help improve conservation outcomes. Linda’s work looks at ways to estimate grassy forage to inform kangaroo management, which aims to support the regeneration of the unique Buloke Woodlands of north-west Victoria. Linda loves spending time outdoors and has been fortunate enough to work in all kinds of places, from alpine meadows to rugged coasts. She’s keen to share her enthusiasm about nature and to get everyone involved in conservation!



General committee: Celeste Tai (She/Her)


Celeste is a current Masters of Environment student and will soon be interning with DELWP to review the Wildlife Act 1975. She is still finding her way but is following her passion for conservation, animal ethics and welfare. She aims to one day be in a position that actively contributes positively to protecting the environment and its inhabitants, and to provide mentorship to others.

Twitter: @CelesteMingKay


Historic Board & Committee members (2019- 2020):

  • President: Kylie Soanes
  • Vice President: Roan Plotz
  • Treasurer: Matthew Selinske
  • General Director: Lee Harrison
  • General Director: Paul Ferraro
  • General Director: Tim Doherty
  • General Director: Billy Geary
  • Conservation officer: Christine Connelly
  • Social media: Holly Kirk
  • Social media: Elodie Camprasse
  • Cultural officer: Roan Plotz
  • Events planning: Linda Riquelme
  • Conservation social science committee: Matthew Selinske and Emily Gregg
  • Institutional reps: Kat Selwood (Zoos Victoria), Roan Plotz (Victoria University)

Historic Board & Committee members (2018- 2019):

  • President: Kylie Soanes
  • Vice President: Tim Doherty
  • Treasurer: Matthew Selinske
  • General Director: Billy Geary
  • General Director: Lee Harrison
  • General Director/ Institutional Representative: Aby Camalang
  • Social media: Holly Kirk
  • Social media: Elodie Camprasse
  • Events planner: Vanessa Lucy

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