The Federation is a member-based organisation which employs secretariat staff to carry out the work of the organisation on a day-to-day basis.
Federation staff are responsible for:
- coordinating and facilitating the activities of the Federation's members;
- promoting cooperation and communication between Federation members, funding bodies and other relevant organisations;
- representing the views of member centres, and their communities, in a variety of forums, including state and federal governments, the legal sector and the media; and
- conducting a telephone information and referral service for the public.
Serina McDuff - CEO
Serina McDuff joined the Federation as CEO in July 2016. She has advanced human rights and social justice for the past 15 years with a focus on the rights of women and people seeking asylum.
In 2015, Serina established a ground-breaking messaging and reframing project for effectively campaigning for the rights of people seeking asylum, working with international communications expert Anat Shenker-Osorio on Refuge from our Rhetoric – Words that Work. She was previously CEO of the YWCA of Brisbane, where she worked to defend the independent advocacy undertaken by women’s organisations and advance young women’s leadership.
Serina is a former human rights lawyer at Victoria Legal Aid, working across migration, anti-discrimination and mental health advocacy and within the Victorian Government implementing the Charter of Human Rights. In the UK, she led an organisation working with young people to advocate and tell their stories through digital and creative media.
Serina has served on the boards of Rights of Women Legal Centre UK, Diaspora Action Australia and is currently on the board of Digital Rights Watch.
Katie Fraser - Director of Policy and Advocacy
Katie Fraser joined the Federation of Community Legal Centres in June 2014. Katie has seven years experience in community legal centres, where she has worked as a lawyer, community development manager and project manager at Footscray Community Legal Centre and more recently at the Welfare Rights and Legal Centre in the ACT where she managed the Street Law program. Katie has also worked with National Legal Aid and the American Bar Association, and brings a strong understanding of the CLC sector and an impressive track record in developing and delivering projects in a CLC or related context.
(03) 9652 1508 | Work days: Monday, Wednesday
Melanie Poole - Director of Engagement
Melanie Poole is the Director of Engagement at the Federation of Community Legal Centres. Before joining the Federation, Melanie was a Senior Advisor for the Australian Council of Trade Unions, and led the ACTU’s civil society engagement. Melanie was previously CARE International’s Senior Advocacy Advisor the United Nations in New York, a post she held after a decade in international development, including country office work in Kenya and Pakistan. Melanie has also worked as a strategic communications consultant, with previous clients including Amnesty International, the CPSU, Sum of Us, GetUp, All Out and Just Leadership USA. During her time in New York, Melanie was active in civil liberties campaigns, and chaired the Stonewall Policy Alliance, an LGBTI advocacy organisation that works with homeless LGBTI youth.
Melanie holds a Masters in Public Policy from New York University which she completed as an Anne Wexler – Fulbright scholar, and Arts and Law degrees from the Australian National University.
Michael Tamblyn - Project Manager, Specialist-Generalist Project
Michael has worked at the Federation as the Generalist Specialist Project Manager since December 2016.
Before joining the Federation, Michael worked as Manager and Principal Lawyer at the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre’s Human Rights Law Program. He has lived in Latin America where he worked with Peace Brigades International providing international advocacy and protective accompaniment for Mexican human rights defenders at risk of persecution, and interned at the Centre for Justice and International Law where he assisted staff lawyers litigate matters before the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. His first job as a lawyer was with the Aboriginal Legal Rights Movement in South Australia where he did court work in remote communities, including regular circuits on the Pitjantjatjara Lands. He has also worked as a volunteer for community legal centres and not-for-profit organisations.
Michael holds a Masters in International Human Rights Law from the University of Essex, UK, and a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Arts from Flinders University, South Australia
(03) 9652 1510 | Work days: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Natalie Hallam - Victorian Accreditation and Capacity Building Coordinator
Natalie joined the Federation in October 2017 and comes with extensive experience in supporting and advising the development and ongoing continuous improvement of community organisations.
Natalie has 13 years experience in the Child and Family Health Services. After an extensive clinical background as a practitioner, Natalie was subsequently responsible for the management, oversight and education of quality improvement, clinical governance and risk management frameworks within a specialist Early Parenting Centre which offered support services to vulnerable families and at-risk infants.
Natalie has worked within a variety of compliance standards and frameworks and has completed a qualification in auditing. Prior to this, Natalie has also been the Director of two Early Learning Centres and has worked in communications and IT, responsible for performance and projects.
(03) 9652 1502 | Work days: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday
Michelle Reynolds - Senior Project and Policy Advisor
(03) 9652 1504 | Work days: Monday, Tuesday, Friday