Meet the Committee

Committee Structure

The WIF Committee was established in 2007 with a representative from each mainland state in Australia, a chairperson and sponsor representative. In 2008 the committee introduced additional members to include an additional representative from each mainland state in Australia and a representative appointed by the national board. 2009 saw the introduction of the committee inviting the current WIF of the Year to participate as a committee representative for the duration of that year.

In 2010 the WIF adopted the structure of the State Chapters that allows for up to 15 members on a committee.

In 2011 the WIF Committee has been reclassified as a Special Interest Group and, as such, the Committee comprises no set number of positions:

  • WIF Committee Chair (elected from the WIF State Representatives)
  • QLD/NT Representatives
  • SA representatives
  • NSW / ACT Representatives
  • VIC/TAS Representatives
  • WA Representatives
  •  WIF of Year for that year (invited guest)
  • Where possible, one of the State representatives is to be an elected member of the FCA's State Chapter
  • All Committee Members must be current members of the FCA
  • The WIF Committee will appoint a Chair from the elected WIF Committee
  • At the discretion of the FCA Board of Directors, they may appoint a Board Member to represent the WIF network. This individual may or may not be a member of the WIF Committee

Nominations for Committee Representatives

As the WIF Committee is a Special Interest Group there is not a formal nomination process.

If you would like further information on the roles and responsibilities of being a committee representative please contact us.

Chairperson

   
 

Racha Abboud
Coleman Greig Lawyers

As a Senior Associate at Coleman Greig, Racha has worked in a range of areas within the firm including commercial leasing and finance. Racha now works solely in the Corporate and Commercial Team utilising her specialist expertise in franchising.

With demonstrated leadership strengths, and a proven ability to manage multiple responsibilities in a fast-paced environment, Racha is also able to think 'outside the box' when identifying potential problems and developing innovative solutions for clients.

In addition to her technical expertise, Racha prides herself on being able to understand her clients' businesses, and having an insight into their current and future needs. Drawing on her highly developed interpersonal skills, she is able to build long-lasting professional relationships with clients that enable her to provide practical, timely and relevant solutions for their businesses.

Racha is also a NSW committee member of the Franchise Council of Australia.

 

NSW Representatives

 
 

Raeleen Hooper
Snap Franchising Ltd

As general manager franchise services, Raeleen presides over franchise sales, marketing, corporate sales, marketing systems, franchise support and training. She is a key member of the Snap executive who are currently transforming the Snap franchise group from instant print outlets to the leading brand in print, design and websites. Snap has over 180 locations worldwide. Raeleen demonstrates strong business acumen gained through extensive experience in senior management roles across sales, marketing and franchising.

 

Natalie Brennan
Foodco

Educated originally as a teacher, Natalie spent the first 10 years of her career in Operational Training roles in Brisbane with multi-unit operations including Collins Foods (Sizzler), Power House Hotels (Hotels and Nightclubs) and the Billabong Group (Restaurant and Hotels). After gaining a Commerce degree as an adult student (majoring in Industrial Relations) her passion for Human Resource Management was further ignited. This gave her the opportunity for a role working for Spotless Foods in HR and Training for the 2000 Sydney Olympics where she led the training for over 3000 catering staff who were employed for the 10 day event. After spending time in this role with Spotless on other major sporting events, Natalie took up a position in 2001 as HR and Training Manager for the Foodco Group, franchisor for Muffin Break bakery cafes, Jamaica Blue cafes and Dreamy Donuts stores.

Since that time Natalie has a number of key positions in the company including two years spent in the USA as Project Manager for a pilot Muffin Break store. She is currently the National Service and Support Manager. This senior role oversees a number of departments for all three Foodco concepts including Product Supply and Procurement, Product Development and Training. She is also overseeing the operations and development of the recently purchased Dreamy Donuts Brand.

 

Wendy Donaldson
World Manager

A results-oriented leader with excellent project management skills, Wendy is highly trained and experienced in all aspects of management and restaurant operations, having worked in both new and established franchise and retail systems. Wendy has held the Operations Manager title at Coco Cubano, Gloria Jeans and Mcdonalds. She is currently the global operations manager with World Manager®, assisting brands in identifying areas of business that can be taken into the cloud to improve business communications and operational performance. World Manager® is the fastest growing communications provider in the corporate cloud, offering suites for operations, human resources, training and communications with unprecedented reporting capabilities to manage your business. The award-winning World Manager® platform was launched commercially in 2005 and it is now being used by over 20,000 businesses in more than 50 countries.

 

Melissa Wharton
Mad Mex

Mel currently leads the national franchise sales, training and IR function for Mad Mex fresh Mexican grill. Originally from Canada, Mel brings 20 years of experience within the QSR, hospitality & FMCG industries at strong food franchise brands such as Grill'd healthy burgers, Tim Hortons (Canada's largest quick service restaurant chain) and Swiss chocolatier, Lindt & Sprüngli. Mel's recruitment expertise, coupled with her entrepreneurial tenacity and strategic approach, has anchored her as a trusted advisor within the Australian market.  Mel has been described as having a "strong social competency, guided by a motivated personality and ability to connect with a large variety of people".

Mel relocated to Sydney from Melbourne two years ago to join the emergent Mexican fast casual brand and drive organizational change to prepare Mad Mex's for their next stage of growth.

Mad Mex fresh Mexican grill launched in Sydney in 2007 and has expanded to over 50 locations across Australia and New Zealand.  In 2013, Mad Mex was ranked sixth on BRW's fast franchise list and was one of only three retail trade establishments to be ranked within the top 20 of  BRW's  fast 100 list.

VIC Representatives

 
 

Marianne Marchesi
Marsh & Maher

Marianne is an experienced commercial and franchising lawyer who has acted for a number of well-known brands across a range of industries - including the food and hospitality, entertainment, pharmaceuticals, professional services and homeware sectors. Marianne's practice has focussed on Franchising Code of Conduct compliance, the establishment of franchise systems, conducting franchise transactions and advising both franchisors and franchisees.

Marianne has authored a large number of publications as well as presented a range of workshops and seminars, particularly in relation to franchising.

 

Corina Vucic
FC Business Solutions

Corina Vucic has been involved in the franchise industry for more than 16 years and is the director of FC Business Solutions.  She was named the 2012 Franchise Council of Australia (FCA) Woman in Franchising (VIC/TAS) and led FC Business Solutions to being awarded the 2012/2013 FCA Supplier of the Year.  Corina is a committee member of the FCA Victorian Chapter and assists the Women in Franchising Committee as required.  She is a highly experienced mentor, trainer and business coach and believes in influencing success through motivation and engagement by providing leadership, support and guidance at all levels.

Corina has a Bachelor of Arts and Commerce, a Masters in Human Resources and a Certificate IV in workplace training.  Under Corina's guidance, FC Business Solutions offers exceptional client services in: traditional executive recruitment and HR services; training of franchisees and franchisor personnel; public relations and marketing; franchise system development and support; organisational profiling of new brands.  Corina thrives in an active environment, when she is not helping clients achieve their business goals she enjoys sky diving and bridge climbing and has climbed all three major bridges in the southern hemisphere.

   

Alexandra Giudice
FC Business Solutions

Alexandra Giudice is the Executive Assistant to the Director of FC Business Solutions and is also responsible for the day to day running of the office and business. 

In 2015 Alex was invited to sit on the Women in Franchising Committee, a position that she will take on with her usual enthusiasm and professionalism that places her as a highly respected member of the FC Business Solutions team. 

Alex's role at FC Business Solutions sees her responsible for the overall management and administration of the office including project management as well as managing the Director's diary, calendar, events and travel commitments.

Alex has achieved her Training and Assessment qualification (TAE) and is a qualified Team Management System (TMS) facilitator. She is currently studying for a Certificate IV in Business Administration through FC Business Solutions.

Alex has gained a variety of skills having worked in the hospitality industry since the age of 16. She co-managed Mocha Jo's to build a well established and reputable business and to this day still has a role within the company as Manager. Alex believes that many hands make light work and constantly goes above and beyond to help those around her. Alex would like to use her hospitality and business skills to one day own and operate a successful restaurant with her twin sister.

 

WA Representatives

 
 

Linda Steel 
Think Done

Linda commenced her business career in real estate, working for a major franchised group, Mair & Co, in Western Australia.
Following this, she worked for Telstra as Western Australia's Lease Portfolio Manager and Power of Attorney for property transactions.  As the youngest person to ever hold this position, she obtained and managed high value leases of commercial and industrial property in the Perth CBD and through the state for five years.

Linda then established and ran her own printing business, High Toned Printing, for many years, assisting clients in area of advertising, marketing and company expansion.  Through this endeavour she became involved with CHOOKS Fresh & Tasty in 1997 (when it operated under the name of "River Rooster").  She provided advertising and marketing expertise for the group.  Interested in the growth of the company, Linda joined the company on a full time basis in 2001 and held the position of General Manager until the sale of the CHOOKS network in October 2010.

Linda is now a Director and licensed management consultant for Think DONE Management Consultancy and regularly consults to business people / franchisors / franchisees in the Perth community. 

Linda successfully completed a Diploma in Business (Franchising) from the Franchise Council of Australia (FCA) Franchise Academy in 2006. Linda has been an Associate Fellow of the FCA since 2006, being one of the first to participate in the FCA's CPD programme and is a current member of the FCA WA Committee.

Linda has been awarded with the 2006, 2007 and 2008 Excellence in Franchising FCA Woman in Franchising award for Western Australia.  In addition to this, Linda was a finalist in the Telstra Business Women's Awards in 2008 and 2010. Linda has been involved in the Women in Franchising Special Interest Group since its inception in 2006.  Linda is a passionate promoter of professional development and opportunities for women in franchising and business"

Tamra Seaton
MDS Legal

Tamra is a director of law firm, MDS Legal. She practices in the area of franchising and licensing law and the related areas of competition, trade practices compliance, intellectual property and commercial property law.

Tamra's franchising work includes the establishment and ongoing administration, development and corporate governance of state, national and international franchise schemes and also the sale and acquisition of franchise networks. She counts several large franchisors among her long-term clients as well as several new and emerging franchise systems. Tamra also advises and acts for master franchisees and franchisees.

Tamra has been on the Committee of the WA Chapter of the Franchise Council of Australia for approximately 10 years and is current the WA State Chapter President. 

 
 

SA Representatives

 
 

Kirsty Dunn
Thomson Geer

Kirsty is a Senior Associate in Thomson Geer's dispute resolution team and is based in Adelaide. She is a member of the firm's national franchise team and has extensive experience in franchising law and practice.

Kirsty advises clients on compliance with the Franchising Code of Conduct and with the terms of individual franchise agreements. Kirsty has acted in numerous franchising disputes involving contractual issues, Franchising Code compliance and a range of other issues. She is involved in the drafting of franchising documentation and is an adviser to a number of national franchised businesses.

Kirsty also has general litigation experience in areas including trade practices, environment, Corporations Act, tax and chemical regulation.

 


Seva Surmei
DMAW Lawyers


Seva is part of the Business Transactions and Advice section at DMAW Lawyers with experience in general business transactions and extensive experience in franchising and property matters.

Seva's experience in the franchising industry has involved advising and preparing documentation for start up and existing franchise systems in various industries. Seva also advises clients in relation to terms of franchise agreements, ongoing franchise compliance issues and regulatory changes.

Seva is a committee member and secretary of the SA Chapter of the Franchise Council of Australia.

 

Cheryl Haywood
RAMS Home Loans

Cheryl has been in finance for 25 years, first commencing her career with Adelaide Bank (now known as Bendigo Bank), where she discovered a passion for lending. She worked as a Mortgage Broker for a highly regarded SA broker firm for eight years.

Cheryl purchased a RAMS home loans franchise three years ago. She was the first sole female franchisee Nationally for RAMS and also the first SA Franchisee. Since she first commenced RAMS now has another 4 Franchisee's in the State.

She prides herself on the relationships she has with her customers, and her team strives to provide honest and exceptional service, assisting our clients to achieve their short and long term financial goals. Cheryl's experience is backed up by holding a Diploma in Financial Services and fully accredited with the Mortgage and Finance Association.

     

QLD Representatives

   
 

Kate Baring 
Traxion Training

Kate has enjoyed a successful and very 'hands on' career in the field of general business consulting. Since first leaving full-time employment and hanging out her own shingle in 1997, Kate has specialised in business documentation, believing that 'expectations written down have an infinitely greater chance of occurring'. Kate's specialty area is the delivery of business process documentation and the development of improvement strategies.

Kate's projects portfolio have included clients from franchise organisations, public companies and the private sector. These assignments have provided Kate with experience across a broad spectrum of individual business segments including retail, manufacturing, construction, business services, financial services, logistics and wholesale.

Kate is a director of her own software development business specialising in online systems to assist organisations plan and manage both corporate and individual performance levels.

Most recently Kate has partnered with a long-term associate to set up and receive accreditation as a Registered Training Organisation. Traxion Training has a primary focus to assist Franchise Groups to tap into government funded training programs so vital post-induction team up-skilling can be delivered conveniently through a flexible, customised 'e-trainer supported' format.

 

Jan Timms
Traxion Training

Jan is the founder and principle of Get Smart Services and a well-known franchising all-rounder with more than 30 years of practical experience in sales, marketing, training and small business management, underpinned by a strong theoretical framework gained through completing a Master of Management, a Graduate Diploma in Training and Development and a Diploma of Franchising.

Jan started her franchising journey with the Snap Printing Group where she developed the 'Snap Academy' from inception through to implementation and Registered Training Organisation (RTO) status.

She then established a comprehensive learning and development program for Worldwide Online Printing, incorporating an interactive eLearning self-paced training centre for franchisees and their employees.

Jan then moved into what is arguably the most challenging role within the franchising sector head of marketing! In this role she designed and executed a new marketing control system that provides franchisees with local area marketing flexibility as well as an integrated Franchise Growth initiative that systematised local area lead generation resulting in proven revenue growth.

 

Sharon Jurd
Hydrokleen Australia

Sharon started her working life in 1986 in a real estate office which was a part of a small franchise group. Sharon became a Licensed Real Estate Agent in 1991. Sharon became a Stock and Station Agent and Business Agent and also became a qualified Auctioneer. She obtained her Diploma in Business (real estate management) in 1999. In 2004 Sharon opened her first real estate office under a large international franchise group. Due to her immediate success, Sharon opened her second office in 2005 and quickly became a major player in the market place, employing 10 people at any one time. Sharon obtained every goal set including the prestigious franchise "Centurion Award" (2007 & 2008) ranking her in the top two percent of sales people worldwide.

Looking for a new challenge she sold her two businesses and decided to commit to a role in HydroKleen Australia Pty Ltd in 2009.
During April 2011 Sharon took up the offer of purchasing a 50% share holding and directorship in HydroKleen Australia and HydroKleen International, joining her life partner John Sanders in business.

Sharon & John operate as franchisees owning the franchise HydroKleen Gold Coast.

Also during 2011 Sharon commenced and completed her Diploma in Franchising and was recognised in a graduation ceremony at William Angliss Institute in Melbourne.

 

 

Latest News

MEDIA RELEASE   MYOB FCA Excellence in Franchising Award Winners Honoured in Canberra Wednesday 12 October 2016 The Franchise ...
MEDIA RELEASE The Franchise Council of Australia (FCA) recognised franchising's best in South Australia at the 2016 SA Excellence i...
  WA Excellence in Franchising Awards showcase outstanding franchising success.   The Franchise Council of Australia (FCA)...

Upcoming Events

WA Chapter Christmas Lawn Bowls & Meet the FCA Board 12/12/2016

Start Time: 5:00pm
Date: Monday 12th December 2016

Women in FranchisingFranchise AcademyFranchise Council of Australia