SupPAWt our heroes of the future!

This Christmas, help us train the Guide Dog heroes that transform so many lives.

A dog with cape.

SupPAWt our heroes of the future!

This Christmas, help us train the Guide Dog heroes that transform so many lives.

A dog with cape. Donate now

Leading our organisation forward. Senior Leadership Team

Our Senior Leadership Team is responsible for implementing the strategy set by the Board. The Team ensures that performance goals are met and that our work and programs are undertaken efficiently, effectively and sustainably.

Meet the team.

Karen Hayes AM Chief Executive Officer

“To be presented with the opportunity to join one of Victoria’s most iconic and trusted organisations was a dream come true for me. Add to that the chance to lead a talented team of committed and passionate people who do truly extraordinary work: it made the decision to join a very easy one.

The CEO role enables me to use my corporate skills, my not-for-profit experience and my community background to lead Guide Dogs Victoria through a process of significant change and challenge within the sector.

Building on a solid foundation, we are taking Guide Dogs Victoria into the next phase. As a result of the ageing population, our dedicated and talented team is “Taking the Lead”: working to respond to a significant increase in the number of people with low vision who require our support.”


Joanna Stavrou General Manager People & Culture

“Joining this team was an opportunity to get involved with transformational change, particularly in re-establishing the importance of the People and Culture aspect of such an iconic organisation.

I am very keen to work in an organisation that is both well-respected and delivers exceptional service. I’m passionate about using my broad skillset to make a positive contribution to such positive initiatives.”


Charlie Spendlove General Manager Marketing & Communications

“It is a privilege to work for Guide Dogs Victoria and to promote the life changing services we provide. Every adult and child with low vision or blindness has the right to an equitable life, full of opportunity and community.

Seeing people achieve their goals in life and be part of their journey makes it easy to come to work each day.”


Sophie Wild General Manager Strategy and Business Improvement

“It is incredibly rewarding to play a role in delivering the best services possible to our clients, and to support them to live safe and independent lives. Looking to the future at GDV I am excited to oversee the programs we are delivering to be the best possible provider for people with low vision or blindness, and to meet the increasing demand for our services.”


Leah McFadzean

Leah McFadzean General Manager of Guide Dog and Vision Services

I am thrilled and privileged to join the GDV family. Having worked most of my career in the Health and Community sector I was first attracted to the Guide Dogs Victoria set of values and workforce.

Guide Dogs Victoria have a wonderful group of committed, passionate and knowledgeable staff who are intent on finding ways to maximise independence and improve accessibility for individuals and families.  An organisation that actively listens, has the expertise required, and the capacity to walk side-by-side with a client is something to behold.


Rachel Knight Chief Financial Officer

Having started my career in corporate and big-4 accounting I quickly discovered a passion for being involved with for-purpose entities. It is incredibly rewarding working for Guide Dogs Victoria and being able to contribute to their mission.

Good governance and evidence-based decision making facilitates the delivery of our first choice services to our clients, donor and stakeholders, meaning that Guide Dogs Victoria will always remain a trusted partner.


Evan Gordon General Manager Fundraising

“It’s not every day in your career that you get a real opportunity to ensure that when someone loses their sight, they don’t also lose their independence, confidence and freedom of movement.

To achieve this through an organisation that the community regards with such enormous respect is a real honour and privilege.”


Hannah Dale Executive Assistant