Behind the scenes


The 10thousandgirl team includes experts, specialists and passionate and clever communicators and creatives, all with a shared vision for how the empowerment of women can enhance community and social progression.

The Story

10thousandgirl stems from Zoe Lamont and Anneli Knight’s shared philosophy that life is best enjoyed when fuelled by passion and adventure. They share an entrepreneurial spirit and sense of social justice, creating projects and ventures built from hard work and infused with magic. Zoe has been involved in humanitarian projects in developing countries and Anneli has undertaken volunteer projects in Australian Indigenous communities. Through their experiences, Zoe and Anneli have seen how financial security gives you choices and freedom to live life the way you imagine it and agree that learning – especially when you’re busy – is so much easier when it’s fun. The 10thousandgirl Campaign is the outcome of them wanting to share this philosophy. They are excited about the ripple effect this approach to life sets in motion. Zoe now runs the campaign on a day to day basis and Anneli watches on from Byron Bay where she’s writing her second novel.

Founder, Zoe Lamont

Zoe Lamont has been involved in the creation and development of a number of social impact programs including being the founder of the 10thousandgirl Campaign, a life planning and financial literacy program for young women across Australia linked with a microfinance initiative and Future Map a financial wellbeing program for the workplace. Zoe’s passion for seeing people take control of their life and finances stems from a chain of insights gained from her experience growing up on a farm and starting her career in regional Australia and from time working as a humanitarian volunteer on projects in Zambia, Southern India and along the Thai-Burmese border. Zoe is a Fellow of the Australian School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE) and received the inaugural ASIC 2012 MoneySmart Award for an outstanding example of an innovative and effective financial literacy approach for women across regional Australia. She grew up on a farm near Wagga Wagga and now lives between Canberra and Sydney.

Favourite quote: “The Universe is full of magical things patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.” – Eden Phillpotts

Content Manager, Arienne Gorlach

Arienne was one of 10thousandgirl’s founding volunteers before becoming a member of the team. She has lived all over the world and is one of those passionate generous interesting people, the kind that has secret skills and a good bookshelf. She also has a commerce degree with a major in marketing and helped build a marketing team for the company she worked at for close to a decade. She is motivated to work with young women like herself to help them find that ‘thing’ in life that makes them jump out of bed with a sparkle in their eye and is responsible for the day to day runnings of the blog, newsletter and the contributors involved. She writes her own musings at Savvy Sassy She.

Favourite quote: “Rage, rage against the dying of the light.” – Dylan Thomas.


Public Relations, Jo Balfour of Progressiva

Jo is Principal at Progressiva with 13 years’ experience undertaking public relations campaigns in-house, at agencies, freelancer, and business owner across the United Kingdom, Asia, Australia and New Zealand. Armed with a degree in German and Italian and a teaching certificate of swimming to children, Jo considers herself an all-round communications specialist: articulate and calm in rough waters. Jo moved from London to Sydney in 2002, and has combined her English pragmatism with an Australian optimism. She has strong event and project management experience and prides herself on providing a safe pair of hands to clients. Having worked as in-hour PR for Toshiba and with domestic and international brands including Microsoft and Singapore’s Marina Bay Sands, she prides herself on giving strong, value-based counsel while maintaining a sense of humour. She is also a student at the Max Rowley School of Radio/TV presenting and Voiceover. Energetic, networked and reliable, Jo has the vision to think beyond the brief and the drive to see the project through to successful completion.

Graphic Design, Emily Downie of Downie Design

10thousandgirl artwork and illustrations were created by Elissa Northcrop and Quantum Ideas Bureau. Emily Downie, sneaker addict and coffee fiend cleverly creates all the bits and pieces, flyers and educational tid bits that keep us all inspired and informed. She’s the head honcho at Downie Design and her design experience spans years as well as continents, having worked as a designer in Australia and abroad, including in London and New York. Emily is passionate about working closely with clients to truly understand the needs and objectives of the business or organisation: and to align her design passions with clients’ business goals. It’s this nexus where good things happen. When not tied to a Mac of some description, Emily can be found consuming too much coffee, riding anything with two wheels (motorised or pedal power) and enjoying the positive things that life in the Nation’s Capital has to offer.

Events Manager, Jillian Kempton

Jillian’s profile is coming soon as she is working hard on completing her Bachelor of Communications and organising the 10thousandgirl Community Campaigns and Workshops.

National Partnerships Manager, Margie Perez

Margie loves bringing communities together and creating buzzing environments through events and festivals. Working within the events industry for over six years she has widespread experience in project and event management and event marketing. She has worked on local and state wide projects in corporate and sporting environments and for . She has worked with organisations and government agencies such as Department of Ageing and Disability, Parramatta City Council and The Sydney Cricket and Sports Ground Trust. Margie also has a Bachelor of Arts in Communications. She has undertaken further study in the event industry by completing courses such as ‘Connecting with Communities through Festivals and Events’ at UTS and ‘Graphic Design Portfolio’ at Tafe NSW. She has a passion for vintage and antiques and is an advocate for finding the beauty in things that are old and preloved, be it old furniture, clothing or your even you’re Grandma. She enjoys learning Spanish, rock n roll dancing and if you’re lucky enough she may even play you one of the four songs she knows on the harmonica.

Special Programs Coach, Anita Kropacsy

Anita is the director of Mastering Within – Executive Coaching and Training, specialising in profiling how people are motivated within their work and within a team environment. Anita has a history of success after she and the team at PRD Nationwide won 19/40 national awards in real estate. Anita started a business, employing 12 people before doing her coaching qualifications and spending 5 years coaching long term unemployed and homeless people to build their confidence up and move back into the workforce, while also working in the corporate coaching world. Anita is working with 10thousandgirl to support women in difficult circumstances through the S4W funded programs.

Finance, John Mcaskill

John is the finance director for the 10thousandgirl Campaign to support the venture through its plans for long-term sustainability. He has more than thirty years experience in the corporate sector and recently developed the Commission Control Kit, a legal framework that supports and protects families seeking financial advice. His roles have included 11 years as finance director for multi-national fashion empire Chanel. He has also been the chief financial operator for P&O Cruises and Harlequin Mills and Boon. So even though he’s a man, we figure he knows women.

Legal & Auditing, Allens Arthur Robinson & Pitcher Partners

10thousandgirl is receiving pro bono legal support from the team at Allens Arthur Robinson. and auditing services through Pitcher Partners. Many thanks go to our team at Allens and Pitcher Partners for their time and advice and to PILCH for their innovative service.


Sue Klose

Sue Klose was appointed as 10thousandgirl Chair. Sue is publisher of News Limited’s Carsguide and a board member of CareerOne.

John Mcaskill

John Mcaskill was appointed finance director and company secretary. John is former finance director for Chanel and former CFO for P&O Cruises and Harlequin Mills & Boon.

Robin Stonecash

Robin Stonecash, co-author of one of the best selling economics textbooks in Australia, Robin taught economics at UNSW, Macquarie University, and at universities overseas before running her own consulting business in strategy and negotiation.

Kalpana Gee

Kalpana Gee is Head of Business Online at Westpac Banking Corporation following stints at Optus and Telstra.

Annie Crawford

Annie Crawford, Ambassador for Opportunity International and founder of Can Too, a fast-growing personal fitness organisation raising funds toward Cure Cancer.

Heidi Gaussen

Heidi Gaussen, with a background in law Heidi is Principal Analyst in ASX’s Regulatory and Public Policy Unit and is responsible for overseeing listing and operating rule changes and for developing ASX equity market policy.


Ambassador and Program Editor, Anneli Knight

Anneli has produced the 10thousandgirl Campaign Personal Finance Program with contributions from experts in all areas of finance. Anneli co-authored the book Flirting with Finance and writes personal finance blog “Well Heeled” for The Age and Sydney Morning Herald. She is a freelance journalist and was previously on staff at Sydney Morning Herald. Before that she worked as an intellectual property lawyer at Blake Dawson and in various roles at stockbroking firm Goldman Sachs JBWere and she has taught journalism and media law at University of Technology, Sydney. Anneli has degrees in law, finance and journalism and is currently writing a novel under an Australian Government scholarship for a PhD in creative writing. She spends several months each year living in the Kimberley in north-west Australia and is otherwise based in Melbourne.

Favourite quote: “Follow your bliss.” – Joseph Campbell

Jo Hume

Jo fills her life with what she believes in. A Master of Engineering, Jo was awarded a Churchill Fellowship, the Premiers Award for environment and education and is a Queens Trust Forum participant. Currently an investment analyst for CVC Sustainable Investments, Jo is Director of the Australia-NZ Climate Change and Business Centre and formerly ran the NZ Business Council for Sustainable Development. Jo is an iron woman many times over and prides herself on her close network of family and friends and being a mother of four.

Linda Fitzhardinge

Linda faced one of life’s biggest challenges shortly after emigrating from Canada. At the age of 23 her battle with a rare form of malignant cancer brought her a sharp focus on the importance of early planning for life’s challenges. Linda is passionate in encouraging others, particularly women, to take a proactive approach to maintaining their wellbeing. She inspires many with her statements in the media and keynote presentation ‘A Man is Not a Financial Plan’, is founder of the new community for women – and is breaking ground as the first female board member in the 110 year history of the City Tattersalls Club in Sydney.


John Abernethy

As Clime’s Chief Investment Officer, John Abernethy has overall responsibility for funds management. John has over 25 years experience in funds management and corporate advisory services. Prior to establishing Clime, John’s roles included ten years at NRMA Investments as the head of equities, where he successfully managed investment portfolios totalling $2 billion. John founded Clime (formerly Loftus Capital Partners) in 1996. Through Loftus Capital partners, he advised high net wealth individuals on their investments and managed portfolios on their behalf. He is considered an expert in his field and regularly comments in various public spheres and in the media.

Anna Boyd-Boland

As a Certified Financial Planner, Anna Boyd-Boland speaks with a high level of expertise about personal finance and investing. She’s worked in the Australian financial services industry for the past 10 years for a number of banks and financial planning firms. Currently she works as a manager and educator of financial planners for Kaplan Professional. When she’s not talking about “money matters” Anna likes nothing better than watching the rugby – go the Waratahs!

Sarah Clawson

Sarah comes to RIAA with over 7 years of experience working with RIAA’s European sister organisation, Paris-based Eurosif, as its head of Communications. She began her career in France as an English professor at the University of Rennes II in Brittany, and continued to develop skills in public relations and communications through her work with several international IT companies. In her most recent position Sarah managed the member communications, events and press relations for Eurosif. She was also a part of Eurosif’s European Commission project team and acted as coordinator and editor for various Eurosif initiatives at the European Union level.  No stranger to living in foreign settings, Sarah, who originally hails from the United States, has spent the last decade living and working in France and the Middle East.  Sarah moved to Australia with her French husband and their two young children in June 2010.

Laura Menschik

Laura Menschik is the Managing Director of WLM Financial Services Pty Ltd, having been in the financial planning industry since 1987. Laura was a founding member and former Director of the Financial Planning Association (FPA), former Chairman of the FPA’s NSW State Council (1994 to 1997) and was awarded their Distinguished Service Award in 2001. Laura has lectured and presented on various financial planning subjects for the Securities Institute of Australia, the University of Western Sydney, ASX, NSW Government departments, ASIC, Westpac Bank, AMP, Citibank and for various Money Shows. Laura has authored numerous papers and media articles and is widely quoted in the financial press. CFP®, SSA®, AAS, Dip FP, JP.


Vanessa Woodley

Vanessa is a Financial Strategist and founding staff member of the SentinelWealth team. She has been directly involved in the development of the life-focused Seantos Process™ and is a strong believer in the values-based approach to financial planning. Her sound technical knowledge, combined with her warm and understanding approach allows clients to communicate freely, learn with ease and feel empowered through their financial choices. She joined the financial services industry in 2002 and has experience in a wide range of financial planning and management services. Vanessa is keen to share the skills and knowledge she has acquired in practical, relevant ways by empowering people and demystifying financial management for them.





Chair, Arienne Gorlach

Arienne is our founding volunteer: enthusiastically steering the 10thousandgirl Steering Committee. In her day job she guides students through their university course, and in 10thousandgirl she is working with a team of volunteers to help shape the direction of the campaign.

Member, Angela Arban

“If you are given a chance in life to be part of something greater than yourself, you should take a leap of faith and be part of it. I have a whole lot of passion and enthusiasm for social justice and education.”

Member, Holly Baker

“I’m a 23 year old administrative worker who has recently discovered a passion for personal finance and financial planning. I know what it’s like to put a holiday on credit, work from paycheck to paycheck, and how it feels to get stuck in a cycle of debt. I’m now back on track and making plans for the future.”

Member, Jessica Blake

“I have travelled extensively throughout developed and developing countries and have seen firsthand the positive impact microfinance has on a woman’s life and that of her family. Recently returned from a two-month travelling experience in Ethiopia and Egypt I have been looking for opportunities to utilise my marketing skills to help people in developing counties I believe this project would be the perfect opportunity.”

Member, Taliah-Kate Byron

“I am very keen to be apart of a committee that is working with young women in the area of finances. For the past four years I have been actively involved in personal development and believe there is not enough education, services and workshops out there to empower young people to make educated decisions.”

Member, Sarah Cesare

“I want to save,  buy an apartment, and do more travel as well as get around to investing. I want to do this while not sacrificing my lifestyle, regular wardrobe updates, and weekends away. I know it’s time to get real. I am the girl who is currently at square one. I am very interested in improving my financial position but wouldn’t last five lines of a text book.”

Member, Sarah Clay

“My interest in finance stems from living and working in the United Kingdom from 2008 – 2009. I arrived as soon as the global financial crisis (GFC) hit and I felt the full effects of struggling financially in one of the world’s most expensive cities. Although I could not plan for the GFC, I now realise that if I had thought about my finances it may not have been as much of a struggle. It also made me think of my future when I returned home. What do I need to do to ensure I am financially secure if ever another economic crisis strikes? And why didn’t I think of this sooner?”

Member, Courtney Collins

“I am a complete finance novice. I have flirted (mostly unsuccessfully) in building financial capital. My argument has been, that’s ok you are building intellectual capital. And sometimes it is slow to yield! This “capital” has grown through working with and developing community resources. I believe communication can only succeed if there is heart in it.”

Member, Marie Delaitre

“About 5 years ago, whilst living from paycheck to paycheck, I started thinking longer term about my money.  My family isn’t well off and as such, saving or investing was not something we ever talked about. I began researching online and came across some basic advice – save 10% of what you earn, and if you are going to seek advice about money, find someone who knows about money. Armed with knowledge, I’m on a mission.”

Member, Helen Gunner

“I have been searching for an avenue to volunteer, to be able to ‘give’ to society – I knew it had to be something meaningful and be of a humanitarian nature and I believe I have found it. I know it’s the small things that count – like Mother Teresa said, “We cannot do great things on this earth. We can only do little things with great love”.

Member, Nataly Matthews

“I have always wanted to excel in finance but have struggled to gain direction and motivation at times and this campaign assists in just that whilst boosting self esteem. What makes it extremely rewarding is that we are given the opportunity and ability to help others as we help ourselves which is SO exciting as I have always loved to participate in volunteer work.”

Member, Hannah Muirhead

“After completing a law degree (to learn how to debate) and a politics degree (to have great dinner party conversations), I have worked as an account executive, junior strategist and brand planner. I have an almost evangelical belief in the power of brands and design to make a positive difference to the world, and love working on helping good companies and causes connect with people in a deep and authentic way.”

Member, Erin Sanderson

“10thousandgirl is at the heart of what I want to do… empowering women, creating accessible and relevant opportunities to discover the true power of personal finance. I spent my 20s traveling, studying, working, loving, living, lusting for more. I understand the pressures young women face and I want all of them to understand that with the right approach, their dreams are 100% achievable.”

Member, Jemma Still

“I have been following the recent media coverage regarding equal pay, a push for more women directors, and a lack of financial independence for some women which can influence them to stay in unsatisfactory employment and/or relationships. I’d like to be a part of ensuring the next wave of women are financially aware, goal oriented and successful and able to follow the path of their choosing with clarity and security.”

Member, Lissanthea Taylor

“I’d like to contribute my organisational and planning abilities, and a big picture perspective to this project. I’d also like to share some of the important life lessons I have learn – that all tasks are better with the application of chocolate, that a smile and a kind word are the greatest gifts you can give and that teamwork is the way to go since none of us is as smart as all of us.”

Member, Rachel Tiffen

Member, Kaye Waterhouse

“I live and breathe the GenY financial rollercoaster so have a lot to say about it. I went to the first Melbourne workshop and it was fantastic. I told my girlfriends all about it and it started a dialogue about financial responsibility that we’d never had before. I want to keep that going!”

Member, Rene Yap

“Having worked for six years in Singapore and yet not having anything to show for it, I have learned the hard way about how not saving can be potentially disastrous and stressful. I’m currently pursuing a degree in communications (public relations) as an international student. This journey won’t be easy financially, but I am determined to soldier on as I am investing in my future, and the return on investment will be evident when I start my second career upon my graduation.”


Thanks to a passionate group of minds who have given their generous support, time and expertise throughout the development of the 10thousandgirl Campaign:

Rachel Tiffen, Victor So, Arienne Gorlach, Natalie Matthews, Kate McCarthy, Tracey Cantle, Liza Boston, Elca Grobler, Jacqueline Weiley, Gail Davies and everyone at Opportunity International Australia, Amy Blacker, Caroline Thomas, Holly Shalders, Yvette Cunningham, Sonja van den Bosch, Luke Harvey-Palmer, Trent Taylor and the P1 group.

A special thanks goes to the fantastic group of young women who took part in the case study program over 2008 and 2009. Their feedback and support have helped create what the campaign has become.

Life Planning Workshop

Get a life and finance makeover ..and a beauty makeover! The first series of one day Life Planning Workshops are being held at Napoleon Perdis Makeup Academy venues in capital cities from February to June 2010.

More info and register now

Personal Finance Program

Find out more about the one year Personal Finance Program. Available from June 2010, we're looking for girls to jump on the boat early. Provide feedback on each of the modules and receive your program free!

Click here for more info

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