Danni Townsend O'Neil
Wildlife Rescuer & Carer
Once in a while a 'new timer' peeks its head around the corner, one that leads us down the lens of curiosity, and all for the better! Welcome to creative mind and wildlife carer, Danni Townsend O'Neil; a women who's artistic quirks and passion for her beloved animals is nothing short of contagious and captivating.
While Danni's multi-faceted nature stems from her success as a photographer, creative director, founder and head designer of multiple fashion houses, she is now officially chuffed to be fulfilling her long-life passion as a full-time wildlife carer in Myrtleford Vic.
Confident yet quietly petrified of anything less than loving, Danni is a master observer of human nature and animals, a women who is a permanent fixture within the wildlife collective and the long-term vision of ROWA.
Emili's love for her rural upbringing and connection to animals has never failed in providing her with an inquisitive mind. Born and raised on a remote cattle station in Central Queensland, it's fair to say Emili has come full circle, retiring from the stock saddle into the gentle side of life, in what she defines as a colourful realisation. With a deep passion for animals accompanied with her successful career in the performing arts, Emili believes the power of sound is a vital component towards guiding humanity into a more harmonious and joyous collective, enabling one to share a more compassionate view of our connection to animals and nature. While her life-map stands as a unique contribution within the wildlife collective, her previous experience in small business, education and event management will lead ROWA into the hands of the open-minded and the seekers of new ideas and concepts.
Dr. Jennifer Ford
Director/Community Engagement & Education Manager
Jennifer is a zoologist with extensive experience spanning animal welfare, conservation, policy, research and education. Her passion for animals has led to a diverse and interesting career. Her PhD research investigated animal welfare in zoos and visitor education. After came roles in both national and international NGOs including:
World Animal Protection Asia-Pacific, RSPCA Victoria and World Wide Fund for Nature – Australia. Education and training has also thread through much of her career, with over 10 years in universities, and other education institutions. Jennifer is also an experienced speaker, and loves nothing more than sharing her stories and passion for animals, including orangutans. Jennifer, like many, has been drawn to the Alpine region, and spends as much time as she can at her home near Bright.
Chris grew up on a traditional milk & beef farm in the Murray Valley of Victoria. Living in the bush and being close to animals has strongly influenced his path in life. Thus began a holistic approach to environmentalism coming from the base of the right of all living beings to be free of cruelty or domination by humans.
After a successful IT career, Chris made the move to follow his passion. This decision led to a successful role in wildlife rescue and rehabilitation across North East Victoria. He met Glenda Elliott (who started Kangaloola Wildlife Shelter at Yackandandah) and became part of the small team caring for hundreds of animals. He has now worked at the Shelter and been a wildlife rescuer for over 15 years. Chris is also involved in advocacy aimed at solving the big problems, whilst staying grounded in the daily needs of animals Chris Lehmann that require care.
Wildlife Education & Rehabilitation Officer
Linda Dennis is founder and owner of Fourth Crossing Wildlife – a website that shares information and resources about the care of Australian native wildlife. In 2004, after recognising a gaping hole in wildlife education, Linda created Fauna First Aid - her wildlife rehabilitation training program - and she now travels Australia teaching others how to properly care for native animals. Linda has completed much wildlife training herself, including the care of koala; wombat; macropod; glider and possum; flying fox and microbat; snake handling; Certificate III in Captive Animals (Wildlife Husbandry and Rehabilitation) with Victorian University and Conservation, Welfare & Handling of Australian Marsupials with the Macquarie University in Sydney. Linda also attends the bi-yearly Australian Wildlife Rehabilitation Conferences where she represents the Australian Wildlife Society. Since 1998, Linda has rehabilitated and raised many Australian species.
With over 15 years management experience within a variety of corporate businesses and not-for-profit organisations, Charlie is a dynamic and visionary leader. With extensive experience in leading the strategic direction of several start-up businesses, she brings foundation and business strategy to ROWA. An active member of the Animal Justice Party, Charlie is a passionate animal rights advocate who is committed to inspiring community connection to animals and the environment through education, kindness, and compassion. She is also a local resident and councilor for the Alpine Shire.
Jess Christiansen is Head of Marketing and Communications at RACV Solar. Withover 12 years of professional experience, she cut her teeth in big creative advertising agencies, before moving to roles in both large global corporations and fast-paced entrepreneurial companies. Jess’ passion and motivation to work on initiatives and in sectors that drive positive environmental and social change has led her to focus the most recent 7 years of her career in the renewable energy industry. She has also held positions on the committee for the UN Young Professionals in Melbourne, is a member of the Clean Energy Council’s Women in Renewables and volunteers her time to initiatives such as the Animal Rescue Collective’s bushfire wildlife recovery efforts. A lover of the outdoors, animals and nature, she spends her spare time racing in ultra-marathons and hiking in the mountains.
With a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Graduate Diploma in Science (Environmental Management), Nikki's passion for both worlds offers ROWA unique strengths. Although an experienced sailor and skier at heart, drawing birds and insects equally led Nikki from working in habitat restoration around Melbourne to residing in the beautiful community of Harrietville. Although Nikki's love for fine art and extreme sports leaves her content, her on par experience in Environmental Management continues to fuel her deep love of nature and Australian wildlife.