Our people

OUR PEOPLE

BOARD MEMBERS

Rebecca Lang (Chair)

Rebecca is the CEO of the Queensland Network of Alcohol and other Drug Agencies (QNADA). Rebecca is an experienced systems advocate with a background in organisational quality improvement. She is a member of the Australian National Advisory Council on Alcohol and other Drugs (ANACAD), the principal expert advisory body to the Australian Government on issues relating to alcohol and other drugs. Rebecca also sits on the advisory board of the National Centre for Youth Substance Use Research (NCYSUR) and the board of Unharm.

Dr Robert Stirling (Deputy Chair)

Robert is the CEO of the Network of Alcohol and other Drugs Agencies (NADA) in NSW. Robert has worked in the AOD sector for over 15 years across the government and non-government sectors. He sits on a number of committees representing the non-government AOD sector, including as a board director for the National Centre for Clinical Research on Emerging Drugs (NCCRED). Robert holds qualifications in public health and community management, and is currently undertaking a doctorate exploring performance measurement of AOD treatment.

Professor Leanne Hides

Professor Leanne Hides is the President of the Australasian Professional Society on Alcohol and other Drugs (APSAD). She hold the Lives Lived Well Chair in Alcohol, Drugs and Mental Health and is the Deputy Director of the National Centre for Youth Substance Use Research at The University of Queensland. Leanne is a clinical psychologist with over 25 years of clinical and research experience in the treatment of substance use problems. Most of this work is conducted in partnership with government and non-government organisations to ensure research can be translated into practice.

Chloe Span

Chloe is the Victorian Clinical Services Manager for Family Drug Support (FDS) Australia and is responsible for running support groups, community workshops and the FDS flagship program, ‘Stepping Stones’ for families supporting someone affected by alcohol and drug use. She has a background in case management for people receiving unemployment benefits, is the Founding Secretary of Students for Sensible Drug Policy Australia (SSDP), a Board Member of Harm Reduction Australia (HRA), and a registered Social Worker with the Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW). In the past, Chloe was selected for the 2021 AASW Excellence Award of ‘Student of the Year’ and more recently, the 2022 Tandem Carers Individual Community Award for ‘exceptional compassion and consistent support to families in AOD.’

Jill Rundle 

Jill is the CEO of the Western Australian Network of Alcohol and other Drug Agencies (WANADA). Jill is passionate about systemic advocacy, the need to recognise alcohol and other drug use primarily as a health concern, and the unique value of the specialist service sector. Her work has encompassed strategies to promote equitable access to alcohol and other drug services, sector capacity building and cross-sector collaboration. Jill developed the WA AOD Sector Quality Framework in 2004 which is now an international accreditation standard for the alcohol and other drug service sector.

Stephanie Holmes

Stephanie Holmes is an Aboriginal person of the Wadja nation, and of the Stolen Generation. Stephanie brings over 25 years of experience in health service delivery in frontline nursing and psychology in remote to urban settings in Woorabinda, Toowoomba, Alice Springs, Yuendumu, Tennant Creek, and Darwin. A key focus of Stephanie’s work is to prioritise knowledges and expertise of local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to improve wellbeing and health. Stephanie has worked with community-controlled services to address substance use including for commercial players. In Jabiru (NT), Stephanie worked as the Women’s and Children’s Substance Misuse Coordinator for Djabulukgu Association Incorporated.

Stephanie has also worked on the Inquiry into the Response by Government Agencies to Complaints of Family Violence and Child Abuse in Aboriginal Communities. Prior to relocating to the NT in late 2023, Stephanie worked as an executive leader within community-controlled health organisations, Native Title Corporations for Traditional Owners and the not-for-profit sector within Drug and Alcohol across the Pilbara region, Western Australia. Currently, Stephanie is Executive Officer of The Association of Alcohol and other Drug Agencies NT (AADANT) – the peak body for frontline drug and alcohol services in the NT.

STAFF MEMBERS

Melanie Walker, Chief Executive Officer

Melanie is the CEO of AADC and is based in Canberra. Immediately prior to taking up this role, Melanie was Chief of Staff to the ACT’s Deputy Chief Minister. She has also been the CEO of the Australian Injecting and Illicit Drug Users League (AIVL), a consultant in the ACT alcohol and other drugs sector, Deputy CEO of the Public Health Association of Australia and a senior public servant in the Australian Government Departments of Health and Human Services and ACT Health. Prior to that, Melanie was coordinator of an AOD service, an adviser to a former ACT Chief Minister and Senator for QLD, as well as having worked with the former Alcohol and other Drugs Council of Australia and as a broadcast journalist.

James Dunne, Policy and Projects Coordinator

For more than 15 years James has worked in policy and research roles within government, non-government organisations and universities in Australia, Scotland and Hong Kong, including with the Australian Injecting and Illicit Drug Users League and the Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society. James has a long history of working in member-based organisations at the regional and national level, and has a passion for improving health and wellbeing outcomes for people who use drugs. James is a former board member of the Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations and current Fellow at the Centre for Criminology at The University of Hong Kong.

AADC acknowledges Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures; and to Elders, past, present and emerging.

AADC acknowledges Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures; and to Elders, past, present and emerging.