On-board Lead Facilitator

Dr Deb O’Connell
HB3 on-board Overall & Leadership facilitator 


The world is changing at an unprecedented rate and in novel ways. In response, many governments and non-government organisations, industries, businesses, programs and policies, as well as civil society, are developing aspirational goals that embody the concepts of resilience, adaptation, transformation and sustainability. The challenge is to make these concepts operational, and use the science to support decision-making in communities, industries and governments.

Deb leads global research in the areas of resilience, adaptation pathways and transformation of social-ecological systems. She has a strong interest in designing and applying contemporary scientific and engagement approaches to complex, real-world problems. She takes a systems approach and enjoys working with people to build strong connections between scientists; those who make decisions in business, government and NGOs; and the communities that care about the issues at stake. She has a creative approach to collaboration and co-production of knowledge, and embraces the arts and humanities as critical ways to improve the relevance and impact of science. She has built many successful partnerships and collaborations with a range of people, disciplines and organisations, as is reflected by the range of projects she has led, and her co-authorship on a range of different types of publications.

Her research in the last 20 years has focused on developing and applying integrated assessment frameworks and systems analysis approaches in the domains of water and energy; as well as sustainability science. She has spent the last five years applying these approaches in the areas of how society can navigate global change and shock – for example, in climate change adaptation, food and water security, and disaster risk and mitigation. Deb is an HB1 alumna.

Leadership Stream

Fabian Dattner
Leadership Stream Leader and online facilitator
HB3 on-board Leadership facilitator and coach


Pollyanna Lenkic
HB3 on-board Leadership facilitator and coach



Michelle Crouch
HB3 on-board Leadership coach & Logistics





Fabian is well known to many Australians. She is founding partner of highly regarded leadership experts Dattner Grant, and founder of Compass, a national leadership initiative for women. Dattner Grant are also the initiators of Women at Their Best, a Facebook site for ordinary women doing extraordinary things. Fabian is widely recognised for her commitment to helping hundreds of men and women, in as many organisations from Board to basement. She has multiple technical accreditations and has been included in as many books as she’s written. She’s a speaker, educator and social entrepreneur, and a regular commentator in the media on leadership and ethical issues in Australia today and the role of women in building a sustainable future. She has been three times a finalist in the Telstra Businesswomen’s Awards (last in 2016) and has been selected as one of the NAB 2016’s 100 Women of Influence. To connect with Fabian: LinkedInTwitter, Facebook.


Pollyanna is a coach, mentor, facilitator and speaker who works with leading organisations. Her purpose and passion is in helping individuals and teams to thrive, to create sustainable results aligned with their goals, and the goals and strategy of their organisation. With a strong business background, Pollyanna understands results need to be realised and measured. At 24, she co-founded a specialist IT Recruitment Consultancy in London, which grew from humble beginnings to a permanent team of 18 with 100+ consultants and an annual turnover of £11 million. Pollyanna sold her 50% share-holding in 2000 and moved back to Australia in 2002.

Over 16 years’ experience working with emerging to senior leaders and C-Suite Executives, supporting them to achieve their personal and professional goals, has included: leading through change; high-performing teams; developing leadership skills,impact and presence; leadership development for technical specialists; career planning and transition; on-boarding to new roles; skills and capability uplift; influencing and communication skills, including how to have constructive/challenging conversations in a productive manner; and gender-diversity-specific coaching/development of high-potential women in organisations.

As Director of Operations with Dattner Grant over the last 10 years, Michelle has worked alongside Fabian as a ‘trusted advisor’ and is responsible for the overall operations of this business. This background, plus over 20 years’ business experience, enables Michelle to bring a unique blend of business skill and insightful thinking to enable individuals to develop a greater sense of self-awareness. Her passion is supporting people who are in transition or interested in personal growth, to enable them to reach their full potential and recognise and accept who they can be as a leader in a holistic whole-of-life way.

Science Stream

Dr Justine D. Shaw
Science Stream Leader and online facilitator
HB4 on-board Science facilitator




Assoc. Prof. Mary-Anne Lea
Science Stream Leader and online facilitator


Christiana Figueres
HB3 on-board Strategic Climate Change Policy Expert & Science facilitator
Inaugural HB ‘Elder’


Dr Katherine Duncan
HB3 on-board Science facilitator



Sharon Robinson
HB3 on-board Science facilitator





Justine is a Research FellowCentre for Biodiversity and Conservation Science, The University of Queensland, Australia. She is a research leader in Antarctic and sub-Antarctic conservation. Justine is interested in understanding the way in which species interact with each other and how this shapes ecosystems. Her research examines the role of environmental factors in influencing species abundance, distribution and occurrence. Justine is currently examining the impacts of humans on Antarctica and how we can better protect it. She is investigating how island ecosystems respond to pest eradications to inform conservation decision making.

Justine has a large global research network, having worked in Australia, South Africa, sub-Antarctic/Antarctic and the Arctic. She has been ‘going south’ for over 20 years and is passionate about expedition science, having spent many hours in the snow, wind and rain with a pack on her back. Through her research and engagement, she hopes to further conservation of these last true wilderness areas.

She is chair of the SCAR Action group on Integrated Science for the sub-Antarctic and an executive member of the Australian Academy of Science, Early Mid-Career Research Forum and is a subject editor for several scientific journals. Justine is a strong advocate for gender equity and inclusivity in STEMM. She is a co-founder of Homeward Bound and the Women in Polar Science Network. Justine is a Homeward Bound co-founder and has been on-board Science facilitator also on HB1 and HB2.


Mary-Anne is a polar marine ecologist whose research focuses on the influence of climate change and variability within the marine environment on top predator behaviour, and distributions in the Southern Ocean and Alaska. She has participated in over 20 remote expeditions and voyages to study marine mammals and seabirds. Currently, Mary-Anne is an Associate Professor in the Ecology and Biodiversity Centre at the Institute for Marine & Antarctic Studies, University of Tasmania.

She is a strong advocate for equity and inclusivity in all walks of life, and is happiest when collaborating with others. Mary-Anne has worked with researchers all over the globe and across systems (sub-Antarctic/Antarctic, sub-Arctic Alaska and North Pacific and temperate). She is a member of the Scientific Committee for Antarctic Research (SCAR) CCAMLR delegation, the SCAR Expert Group of Birds and Marine Mammals and also co-founded the Women in Polar Science Network. She is a Homeward Bound co-founder and has been an on-board Science facilitator for HB1 and HB2.

Christiana Figueres is a Costa Rican citizen and was the Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change 2010 – 2016. During her tenure at the UNFCCC, Christiana brought together national and sub-national governments, corporations and activists, financial institutions and NGOs to jointly deliver the historic Paris Agreement on climate change, in which 195 sovereign nations agreed on a collaborative path forward to limit future global warming to well below 2°C. For this achievement, she has been credited with forging a new brand of collaborative diplomacy and has received multiple awards.

Christiana is a founding partner of Global Optimism Ltd, a purpose-driven enterprise focused on social and environmental change. She is currently the Convenor of Mission 2020, Vice-Chair of the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy, World Bank Climate Leader, ACCIONA Board Member, WRI Board Member, Fellow of Conservation International, and Advisory Board member of Formula E, Unilever and Eni S.p.A.

She is a graduate of Swarthmore College and the London School of Economics, and has been awarded several honorary doctorate degrees. She lives in London and has two fantastic daughters. Christiana’s involvement in Homeward Bound began as part of the global filmed faculty, in 2016.


Kate started her research group (www.medicinesfromthesea.com) as a Chancellor’s Fellow and Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in Marine Antibiotic Discovery at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland in 2016. With over 13 years of international research experience in marine natural products, Kate completed a MChem (Scotland), an International MChem research placement (Florida), a PhD in Biomedical Sciences (Canada), and two post-doctoral fellowships (Marine Biomedicine. University of California and Marine Biotechnology, Scottish Marine Institute). Kate’s interdisciplinary research encompasses molecular biology, genomics, microbiology, phylogenomics, chemistry, oceanography and comparative metabolomics to discover new microbially produced antibiotics from our oceans. In addition to Homeward Bound, Kate was selected for the 2017 Scottish Crucible (30 future research leaders of Scotland) and, in 2018, was elected to the Microbiology Society Prokaryotic Division (Environmental Microbiology). Kate is passionate about the recognition of women in academic leadership positions and aiding the career development of early career researchers. She is an HB2 alumna.


Sharon Robinson is the Global Challenge Program Leader, Sustaining Coastal & Marine Zones at the University of Wollongong. She researches how Antarctic plants respond to climate change. She uses radiocarbon signatures, left behind in the atmosphere by nuclear testing, to date mosses and track environmental change around the coast of Antarctica. Her group identifies the sunscreens plants make to protect themselves from elevated UV-B radiation due to ozone depletion. She is also applying new technologies, including the use of drones in Antarctica, to monitor plant health and productivity, and developing novel sensors that will help to track crop and forest health in future.

Sharon was educated in the UK. After completing her PhD at University College London in 1990, she held postdoc positions in the USA and Australia. She is currently a member of the United Nations Environment Programme Environmental Effects Assessment Panel and an Editor for Global Change Biology. She first visited East Antarctica in 1996 and has been on 12 expeditions to continental Antarctic and sub- and maritime Antarctic islands with the Australian and Chilean Antarctic programs. She is a custodian for the only Antarctic State of the Environment Indicator concerned with Antarctic vegetation and is passionate about conserving Antarctic biodiversity.

Visibility Stream

Sarah Anderson
Visibility Stream Leader and online facilitator
HB communications and campaign strategist


Julia May
Visibility Stream Leader and online facilitator




Kylie Lewis
HB3 on-board Visibility facilitator







Fern Hames
HB3 on-board Sci-Comms facilitator



Sarah is a communications, marketing and social and digital media strategist with deep experience across corporate, non-profit and government sectors in Australia and internationally. She is passionate about helping women find their voice and become more visible through purpose-driven communications and leadership, having worked with male and female leaders and executives for more than 15 years in strategic and coaching capacities, including most recently leading social and digital communications for ANZ Bank. She is a Director of Visibility Co, working with businesses, start-ups and emerging leaders and putting into play her passion for courageous ideas, authentic leadership, creative thinking and collaboration, leveraging the latest and most exciting frontiers of communication and technology. Sarah co-created the Visibility program for Homeward Bound and has been on-board facilitator for HB2. She also led the communications, and social and digital media strategy for the initiative up to mid-2018, and again May–July 2019.


Julia’s vision is that when her two little daughters are grown, the world will have been brought back from the brink. However, global systemic change is urgently needed and more women leaders are necessary for that scale of change: the reason Julia joined the founding leadership team of Homeward Bound in 2015. She co-created the Visibility program and has also been on-board facilitator for the inaugural program, HB1.

Julia is a communicator, strategist, coach and activist who believes that visibility – the combination of self-aware leadership and authentic, strategic communications – is a key that can unlock potential and accelerate positive change. As co-founder of the Visibility program, her intention is to support women in STEMM with the will and skills to be purposefully visible, in order to create better outcomes for the planet. Julia is a co-founder of Visibility Co., a strategic consultancy that works with purpose-driven individuals and change-makers in government, non-profit and corporate settings. Julia started her career as a journalist, spending five years as a foreign correspondent for the Sydney Morning Herald and holding senior roles at Reuters and The Times of London. Her top four values are justice, compassion, courage and making a difference.


Kylie is an executive coach, presenter and digital strategist with over 20 years experience across five startups. In 2013 she founded her own consultancy and educational organisation Of Kin, with the aim of increasing the visibility of women and their businesses using digital technologies. Intellectually hungry and a pragmatic self-starter, Kylie is on a mission to humanise work and build courageous leaders, cultures, communities and families. Kylie’s regularly speaks on the topic of social media, work/life design and courageous leadership. In 2014 she co-authored Add All To Cart, and in 2016 her book The Leap Stories, based on her blog series was published. In 2017, in conjunction with Small Business Victoria, she launched the In The Company podcast.

Kylie holds a BA in Psychology and Sociology (Hons) and a Masters of Business in eBusiness and Communication. She is an accredited facilitator of Dr Brené Brown’s The Daring Way curriculum, unpacking vulnerability, shame, courage and leadership, and Dr Judith Glaser’s work on the neuroscience of conversational intelligence. She is currently a doctoral researcher at the Monash Sustainable Development Institute (Monash University) investigating behaviour change and digital inclusion. Her research focuses on how to give vulnerable Australians the skills and knowledge needed for equitable digital participation in line with SDG goals.

Kylie believes in the power of a good nap, that things only get better by being talked about and that vulnerability is a superpower. Oh, and that you should always buy the shoes.


Fern manages Science Communication and Collaboration at the Arthur Rylah Institute for Environmental Research (ARI) in Victoria, Australia. She connects people and knowledge; within ARI, and beyond. She has a research background in Antarctic algae and freshwater fish, and extensive experience in engagement, environmental education and citizen science, from Australia’s wild deserts and Wet Tropics to India. Fern has volunteered in Australia, Tanzania, Myanmar and Pakistan and was a founding member of the Jane Goodall Institute Australia. Fern plays an active role in emergency management. She is a Fellow of Rachel Carson Centre, Munich. Fern is an HB1 alumna.

Strategy Stream

Kit Jackson
Strategy Stream Leader and online facilitator
 HB3 on-shore Strategy facilitator


Kit has spent more than 25 years helping leading organisations manage strategic change, and is recognised as the global expert and thought leader in strategy mapping. Kit has held leadership positions in both consulting and industry. She has served as Group Director of Strategy Management for Rexam PLC, and headed up Strategy Execution and Organisation & Leadership Development for TORI. She is the Managing Partner of Strategy Together, a network of expert consultants in executing strategy with recent clients that include Unilever, Anglo American, John Lewis Partnership, Elmwood Design, BMW Financial Services, State Street, HSBC, Just, Tele2 and the Bulgarian Ministry of Tourism. During her tenure as VP and Managing Director at the Balanced Scorecard Collaborative (later, Palladium Group), Kit led and developed the firm’s consulting, conference and education business for northern Europe, and led Kaplan and Norton’s research group. She also co-founded the firm’s operations in the Asia-Pacific region. Several of Kit’s clients are named in the BSC Hall of Fame for executing strategy.

With her forthright, collaborative leadership style, she works with leadership teams to help them implement the right strategic processes, disciplines, organisational changes, and behaviours to achieve and manage business strategy. Clients value Kit’s passion for results and pragmatic approach to facilitating the right strategic conversations to surface and address issues efficiently and effectively. Kit is a coach in personal strategy and practice to fulfil whole-of-life aspirations. In her spare time she is a school governor and leads the Strategy stream of Homeward Bound. She has also been Strategy facilitator on-board for HB1.

Wellbeing Team

Dr Sophie Adams
Wellbeing Team Co-Leader
HB3 on-board Independent Mental Health Clinician


Megan Oaten
Wellbeing Team Co-Leader 
HB2 Alumna


Kate MacMaster
HB4 Reflective Practice Coordinator



Sophie is a Consultation Liaison Psychiatrist. She is Clinical Director at headspace Glenroy, Sunshine, Werribee and Craigieburn, and also at Orygen, National Centre for Excellence in Youth Mental Health. Her interests encompass leadership, culture, clinical governance, youth mental health, neuropsychiatry and somatoform disorders.  In her day-to-day work, she manages complex systems of people in health services and has a humanistic collaborative leadership style. Sophie believes true meaning comes from enabling others to flourish. She is a clinician who both works with young people and leads within teams, and also an academic with research interests in neuropsychiatry and service system provision. She is interested in resilience and shared decision making. Sophie has a lifelong love of true wilderness and roaming in the world. Sophie is also an HB2 alumna, and was on-board independent Mental Health clinician for HB3.



Megan is Senior Lecturer at Menzies Health Institute, Griffith University Queensland. She holds a PhD in Social Psychology and is a registered psychologist. Her research focuses on emotion and disease-related phenomenon in humans. Megan has been the recipient of the prestigious Australian Postdoctoral Fellowship (2010-2012), funded by the Australian Research Council, and is a CI on two Australian Research Council Discovery Project Grants (2015-2018), including “Determining the role of disease avoidance in stigmatization” and “Western-style diet and impairments in food-intake regulation in humans”. Megan was recently invited to present her research to The Royal Society, Theo Murphy International Scientific Meeting, Chicheley Hall, UK, 2017. Her research is featured in several undergraduate textbooks and she is a scientific reviewer for top-tier international journals as well as international funding bodies, including the Australian Research Council (ARC), The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NOW), The French National Research Agency (ANR), The Medical Research Council, UK, The Leakey Foundation, USA and The National Science Foundation, USA.  

Kate is a capacity development consultant, with over two decades of international experience. She has consulted in Australia and in dozens of countries across Asia-Pacific, designing, implementing and evaluating capacity-building and leadership programs for the international aid and development sector, the Australian Environment Movement, the water sector, and the Defence and Intelligence communities.

In addition to leadership development, Kate’s areas of focus include professional, executive and life coaching; gender diversity and social inclusion across cultures; community development; human-centred design and systems thinking for social innovation; strategic planning; program design and evaluation; soft skills training and group facilitation.

Kate is a Board Member of WaterAid Australia; the Programs Director at the Peter Cullen Water & Environment Trust; the Founding Director of Studio Wild Consulting; and Founding Partner of Trader & Co, a social change collective empowering rural Australians to meet, share, create. She holds a Bachelor and Masters Degree in Science, is an HB1 alumna, and has been the Reflective Practice Coordinator for HB2 and HB3.

Expedition Leader

Monika Schillat
HB3 Expedition Leader


Monika´s multi-faceted and dynamic career includes lecturing and guiding as a historian and naturalist in some of the most remote regions of this earth, such as North-West Passage, Svalbard, Greenland, Chilean Fjords and Antarctica for over 25 years. For the last 20 years Monika has mainly travelled as Expedition Leader to Antarctica, Falkland Islands and South Georgia. Originally from Germany, Monika immigrated to South America in 1989. She lectured at the National University in Tierra del Fuego on Latin American History, specialising in the Regional History of Patagonia, Tierra del Fuego and the South Atlantic Islands, and training history teachers in research activities. Lately she has also engaged in studies about Antarctic literature and tourism. Now Monika is a resident of Mendoza, Argentina, where she grows Kiri trees in a project to offset carbon. She is also a published historian. Her works include several books on the history of Tierra del Fuego and the South Atlantic Islands as well as a couple of travel guides, an essay book on Antarctica, another one on the Arctic, a book about tourism in Antarctica with a multidisciplinary view of new activities carried out there, and an Antarctic bestiary with her personal watercolour sketches.


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