Our Team

Appli is a growing global collaboration of wellbeing leaders. Together we stand, united with a common goal to improve wellbeing around the world. We believe that we are stronger in numbers and collaboration is key to creating meaningful and sustainable change at home, school, work and in society. That is why Appli is not one dedicated person, but many, each bringing their unique strengths, experiences, expertise and passion to make mental fitness a way of life.

We are very proud to have compiled a Board and Leadership Team that spans a breadth of sectors and skills that allow us to approach the needs of students, clients, users, government, corporations and the community, with the benefit of decades of highly skilled expertise.  Their service extends to government as both ministers and advisors, as educators in schools and tertiary institutions, as researchers, as doctors, as teachers, as the givers of service in defence, social engagement, as consultants to community, corporations and government, as business leaders in banking, construction, infrastructure, retail and service and as highly regarded mentors and visionaries. We consider our Board and Leadership Team ideally placed to promote the objectives to which we aspire and those which we hope for everyone we engage with whether individually or as part of a wider team, community or organisation.

Professor Stephen Martin


Professor the Hon Stephen Martin
Chairman of the Board

Stephen is a former Australian politician, senior academic and senior corporate executive.  Currently, Stephen’s roles include Chairman of the Bank of China (Australia) Ltd, Chairman of the Men of League Foundation, Chairman Board of Governors for the Global Science and Technology Forum in Singapore, Professorial Fellow at Sydney Business School and Specialist Advisor for Advisian.  He served as a member of the Australian House of Representatives from 1984 to 2002, including as Assistant Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade and as Speaker between 1993 and 1996.   After retiring from Parliament, Stephen re-entered academic life at the University of Wollongong.  Following a period as President of the University of Wollongong campus in Dubai, Stephen took the position of Pro Vice-Chancellor (International) at Victoria University in Melbourne in January 2005. In March 2008, Stephen became Deputy Vice Chancellor (Strategy and Planning) at Curtin University of Technology in Perth.  Stephen returned to Melbourne where he established his own consultancy before joining Southern Cross University Graduate College of Management in the role of Professor of Business Research and Director of the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) program.  Stephen was subsequently appointed as Chief Executive of the Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA), a position he held from 2011 until his retirement in 2017.


Paula Robinson PhD


Paula Robinson, PhD
Founder and CEO

Following a career as a senior executive, Dr Paula Robinson is now a registered, consulting Psychologist, author, speaker and Managing Director of the Positive Psychology Institute.  Paula specialises in the science, application and integration of traditional Psychology and Positive Psychology.  Paula has completed her Bachelor of Science with first class honours and her PhD in Positive Psychology with a mental fitness focus, as well as numerous research studies, book chapters, invited presentations, workshops and strategic positive change programmes for government, private organisations, schools and the wider community.  Paula has been invited to present at conferences in Australia, New Zealand, France, UK, Qatar, Singapore, China, Canada and USA on her work with schools and organisations. Paula has worked with over 300 schools, training and implementing both large and smaller scale Positive Education initiatives for leaders, teachers, students and parents. Paula is currently the Australian representative for the International Positive Education Network and has performed numerous expert advisory panel and media roles. Paula is currently a fellow and lecturer for the University of Wollongong, Sydney Business School, Laureate Universities and guest lecturer at Melbourne University’s Graduate School of Education. Paula has just published her first book in applied Positive Psychology in education, titled Practising Positive Education: A Guide to Improve Wellbeing Literacy in Schools which has received exceptional reviews and the first edition has sold out.  The 2nd edition is now available.  You can read Paula's full bio here.

Dr Jane Burns


Professor Jane Burns
Board Member

Dr Jane Burns holds a PhD (Medicine), BA HONS (Psych),  and is a Harkness Fellow in Health Care Policy and GAICD.  Jane Burns is Professor of Industry and Innovation at the University of Sydney. Jane is Chair of the National Advisory Council for the Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service and Chair of STREAT, a social enterprise for young people aged 16-25.  Jane has considerable experience as a commercial and strategic consultant to industry, government, the NGO and profit for purpose sector. Key positions have been with beyondblue: the national depression initiative and reachout.com by the Inspire Foundation. Jane was the Founder and CEO of the Young and Well CRC and InnoWell Pty Ltd and has raised over $100M dedicated to suicide prevention. She is currently a Non-Executive Director of InnoWell and the Australian Positive Psychology Learning Institute (APPLI).  Jane won the Social Enterprise category for 2015’s Australian Financial Review and Westpac Group 100 Women of Influence and was a Victorian Finalist in the 2017 Telstra Business Women's Awards.  Jane has held joint appointments in Academia as a US Harkness Fellow in Health Care Policy, a Vichealth Fellow in Health Promotion and a National Health and Medical Research Council Fellow in Suicide Prevention.

Dr Lee Styger


Lee Styger, PhD
Board Member

Dr Lee Styger is a creative innovative and thought leader, experienced in fixing and growing organisations.  Focused on industry engagement and commercialisation, Lee is a rare example of an individual who has developed both an academic and commercial career and is capable of bridging the gap between the two.  Currently, Lee is the Academic Director for Post Graduate Student Recruitment and the Executive MBA Director at the University of Wollongong’s Sydney Business School.  As “chief visionary" behind the University of Wollongong’s Sydney Business Schools Executive MBA, the program is now ranked by CEO Magazine as number 1 in Australia.  Outside his role in academia, Lee has over 25 years of experience in organisational strategy, business innovation, complex systems and intellectual property generation.


Professor Ken Dillon

Professor Ken Dillon
Board Member

Professor Dillon’s 30-year career at Charles Sturt University focused on promoting education to transform lives and develop sustainable regional communities. During this time Professor Dillon held multiple roles including Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Administration), Acting Executive Dean of the Faculty of Business, Associate Dean in the Faculty of Arts, Associate Dean (Academic) and Sub-Dean (Learning and Teaching) within the Faculty of Education, Head of the School of Information Studies in the Faculty of Science and Agriculture and Co-Director of the Centre for Information Studies.  Essentially Professor Dillon held leadership positions across all of CSU's faculties. During his cross-institutional role as Dean of Studies, he would oversee Academic Support, Indigenous Student Services, TAFE Partnerships, and Course Quality Initiatives. Ken’s additional responsibilities at CSU included leadership of two key plans in support of the University Strategy 2015-2016 (Markets, Service and Support, and Physical and Virtual Infrastructure) as well as oversight of five professional Divisions across multiple campuses which focused on student support, services to staff and the provision of high quality physical and virtual infrastructure. His service to the University also extended to the wider higher education sector and the communities of regional NSW. Ken has continued his affiliation with CSU as an Adjunct Professor in the Faculty of Arts and Education. He has always been passionate about the student experience leading to individual and collective success and takes great pride in the achievements of CSU students and the role the University’s graduates play in making a difference regionally, nationally and internationally.

Aimee Andersen

Aimee Andersen

Aimee is an accomplished and results-driven Learning Designer, eLearning specialist and Technology consultant passionate about achieving quality educational outcomes through the use of technology. Technically-savvy with excellent relationship building, training, presentation and project management skills, Aimee is motivated with solid experience managing all levels of large-scale projects, including budgeting and project management.  Aimee is a Google certified Level 1 & 2 Educator and Google Trainer and is technically adept in many eLearning platforms.  With a background in IT as a network engineer, Aimee moved into support and training in an educational setting in 2009.  Working and living in remote Indigenous communities for 7 years, Aimee utilises her strong technical background to create current and engaging learner eLearning content also researching and implementing current and emerging technologies to improve delivery strategies and student outcomes.


Michele Chevalley Hedge

Michele Chevalley Hedge

Michele is a Nutritionist, Health Writer, Presenter and was the Highly Commended Nutritional Medicine Practitioner in 2016. Whilst there may be many wellness practitioners stepping into the space of health and food, there are not many nutritionists who come from busy corporate backgrounds who really can understand modern day peoples’ requirements for health and vitality. Michele was previously a marketing manager so she truly understands the needs of time-poor corporate executives who, family or not, want health but not the hassle. Recognising her sensible approach to nutrition, two years ago, Wiley Publishing commissioned Michele to write Beating Sugar Addictions for Dummies. Michele is a sought-after presenter and educator because she is authentic and connects to people who desire knowledge, but not in an overwhelming jargon-filled way.   Every week, Michele works with major banks in Australia – Westpac, CBA, ANZ, HSBC, and corporations like Apple, News.com, MFAA, Women in Focus, ACCOR, Westfield, Department of Defence, Tourism Portfolio, Heart Research Australia, Cure Cancer, and schools and education events. Michele is also an ambassador for Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution and for the launch of THAT SUGAR FILM. Michele is the Nature Care College Ambassador, Cure Cancer Ambassador and Heart Research Institute Ambassador and consults for the Accor Group. Mental health and nutrition research is her passion and she concludes, “Life has many bumps, but with good nutrition, we can nourish a productive brain, a healthy body, and emotional stability”.


Patrick Deehan

Patrick is a leader in digital innovation and leveraging technology for wellbeing. Before joining the team at Appli, Patrick founded MindRazr, an innovative digital health and wellbeing platform that provides cutting edge digital workplace wellbeing solutions to a wide range of organisations across industry sectors. In addition to his work in wellbeing technology, Patrick has extensive experience building and managing successful businesses in numerous industries, both in Australia and overseas. His successful financial career spanning stockbroking, consulting and accounting has given him insight into the challenges that companies face regarding employee mental health and wellbeing.



Lucy Hone


Lucy Hone, MAPP, PhD

Dr Lucy Hone is a Director of the New Zealand Institute of Wellbeing & Resilience, a research associate at AUT University, a published academic researcher, best-selling author and blogger for Psychology Today.  On Queen’s Birthday weekend in 2014, the sudden death of her 12-year-old daughter, Abi, in a tragic road accident, forced Lucy to turn her substantial academic training and professional practice to foster resilience in very personal circumstances. The blog she wrote in the aftermath of Abi’s death attracted international attention and resulted in the best-selling non-fiction title, Resilient Grieving, now available in NZ, Australia, the US and the UK. Having been trained by the thought-leaders in the field – Marty Seligman, Chris Peterson, Barb Fredrickson, Karen Reivich and Angela Duckworth among others – at the University of Pennsylvania, she went on to attain her PhD in wellbeing science/public health at AUT University in Auckland.  She now assists organisations – from leading law firms to primary schools – to design and implement wellbeing/resilience strategies creating sustained and meaningful change. The widespread respect for Lucy’s work is demonstrated by two large-scale pilot projects she is currently running involving dozens of Christchurch schools, backed by Ministry of Education funding. Lucy is also a member of the NZAPP Executive Committee, the All Right? advisory board, the conference convenor for Positive Education NZ, and New Zealand’s only representative of the International Positive Education Network (IPEN)


Andy Irvine

Andy Irvine

Andy has worked as a Project Manager and General Manager in construction and engineering-based industries for 25 years before moving into the Training and Education sector.  He specialises in program and course development having successfully designed, developed and managed a number of innovative training and education programs in both the public and private sector across a range of industries and educational levels.  Andy’s background gives him the ability to communicate effectively with diverse client groups, from senior management to technical specialists and operational staff, and to understand the challenges, needs and visions of an organisation.  This creates ownership of the programs and materials developed, improving how organisations approach their operations, increase productivity and safety, and create new opportunities.


Rob Koonce

Rob Koonce

Dr Rob Koonce is the Founder of Can We Communicate, an educational services agency committed to teaching, research, writing, consulting, and a long-term entrepreneurial initiative aimed at improving leader-follower relations in a wide variety of organizational contexts around the globe. Over the past three decades, his professional career includes serving in the capacity of director of continuing legal education and professional development for a state organization, chief executive of a small business, marketing consultant, medical researcher, and educational trainer in pediatric metabolism. Rob now enjoys utilizing these experiences in academia to help students think more boldly about the world around them. Published on subjects ranging from leadership to metabolic disease, his scholarly interests include examining leadership as a socially co-constructed, dialogical process, and continuing his exploration of mindset as an emergent individual, relational, and collective construct.  Rob is the co-editor and co-author of Developing Leaders for Positive Organizing (Koonce, Robinson, & Vogel, 2017) and Followership in Action: Cases and Commentaries (Koonce, Bligh, Carsten, & Hurwitz, 2016) as well as the series editor of Contemporary Perspectives on Leadership Development (Information Age Publishing).

Anne Lucas

Anne Lucas

Forensic psychologist, Anne Lucas holds degrees in Psychology from the University of Sydney, Macquarie University and James Cook University.  She is registered as a Psychologist with the Australian Health Practitioners Regulation Authority and is a long-standing member of the Australian Psychological Society. Anne is a committee member of the APS NSW Forensic College and won a Forensic College Award for Psychological Practice and Professional Work in 2018.  For over twenty years Anne has been involved in treatment and research. Her interests lie in Public Health and Social Policy especially as they relate to emotional well being, mental health and families.  In her day to day practice, Anne provides expert reports to the Family Court of Australia, Children’s Court and District and Supreme Courts.  Anne has been involved in research through the University of NSW and Charles Sturt University.  Most recently,  she has contributed a chapter on Psychological Assessment in a Forensic Context to the 2018 edition of Crime and Mental Health Law in New South Wales: A practical guide for lawyers and health care professionals (eds. Howard and Westmore).


Professor Toni Noble


Professor Toni Noble

Professor Toni Noble is an educator and educational psychologist with expertise in student wellbeing, positive school communities and positive psychology/positive education. She is an Adjunct Professor in the Institute for Positive Psychology and Education (IPPE) at Australian Catholic University (ACU) and is a co-author, with Helen McGrath, of many practical best-selling teacher resource books including the award-winning BOUNCE BACK! Program and HITS and HOTS: Teaching +Thinking+ Social Skills on student engagement. Her involvement in major government projects includes the Australian Government’s 2011 Revision of the National Safe Schools Framework, advising and developing resources for the Safe Schools Hub, now the Student Wellbeing Hub, and the Australian Government’s 2008 Scoping Study on Student Wellbeing. She has an Australian Government Carrick citation for her outstanding contributions to University teaching and has been a long-term member of the Advisory Board on the National Centre Against Bullying. Toni is a Committee Member of the NSW Chapter of PESA (Positive Education Schools Association).


Dr Barry Partridge

Adjunct Professor Barry Partridge

Dr Barry Partridge is Research Director at Decision Processing Pty Ltd, a business established in 2010 to commercialise research into Australian Managers’ decision making which now operates with clients internationally. He is a Director of The Training Company Pty Ltd and Workplace Images and holds the post of Adjunct Professor at Torrens University Australia where he acts as postgraduate lecturer in economics, decision sciences and innovation on the TUA, Sydney MBA program. He is an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Wollongong where his research and supervision of Honours, master’s and PhD students in the School of Psychology have led to the development of unique approaches to understanding and working with automaticity in managers’ decision making.  His long-term interest is in helping managers deal with large-scale, complex data in building critical thinking into their judgments and flexibility in decision making when working with teams and virtual workplaces.  Barry also specialises in Positive Ageing and intergenerational management in the workplace.


Dr Denise Quinlan


Denise Quinlan, PhD

Dr Denise Quinlan contributes to the development of wellbeing in education and the workplace through her research, programme development and face-to-face consulting and training.  She founded the New Zealand Institute of Wellbeing & Resilience with fellow academics to ensure the promotion of wellbeing was backed by rigorous scientific evidence. In addition to wellbeing work in New Zealand and Australia, Denise teaches strengths-based team development to senior managers from the USA, South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, and on IE University’s Executive Masters in Positive Leadership and Strategy programme in Madrid, Spain.  As a Research Fellow at the University of Otago, she developed measures of cultural responsiveness at the National Monitoring Study of Student Achievement (successor study to NEMP) and currently leads intervention delivery in a study to support university student wellbeing.

Dr Sue Roffey

Sue Roffey, Doc Ed.Psy

Dr Sue Roffey is a highly respected international authority on student and school wellbeing.  She is an Honorary Professor at both Western Sydney University in Australia and Exeter University in the UK.  She is also affiliated to University College London and the Institute of Wellbeing at Cambridge University.  Sue is the author of numerous books, several of which have been translated - as well as chapters and journal articles.  She is in the top 3% of researchers whose work is read on Academia.com. Many of her publications are on various aspects of behaviour in schools including relationships. resilience and social and emotional learning. She has initiated the Circle Solutions framework based in the ASPIRE principles and pedagogy for effective SEL.  This is now being implemented across the world. Sue set up Wellbeing Australia in 2005 and has now returned to the UK, has founded Growing Great Schools Worldwide.  Her passion is putting educational research into practice for the benefit of students, teachers and a more socially just future.


Philip Tam, FRANZCP MBBS, MA, Cert. Child Psych

Dr Philip Tam is a child psychiatrist, researcher and lecturer, currently working in private practice in Sydney. Philip trained in medicine at Cambridge and London Universities, and moved to Sydney in 1999 to continue specialist psychiatric studies. He has been a consultant child psychiatrist in the public and private sectors for 14 years, in both in-patient and community psychiatry. He has a particular clinical, research and teaching interest in the emerging field of ‘internet and video-game addiction’ and is recognised as a national and international leader in the field. In 2011, he co-founded the ‘Network for Internet Investigation and Research in Australia’ (www.niira.org.au) to support and educate clinicians and teachers, as well as concerned families, on the topic of internet overuse and addiction, and was invited to join the American Psychiatric Association’s ‘international working group’ which was investigating the inclusion of Internet Gaming Disorder in the upcoming classification manual, the DSM (Fifth Edition). He has written numerous articles, book chapters and clinical papers on the topic, regularly comments on child-psychiatry topics in the national and international media, and presents specialist and general-public workshops across Australia and globally. In 2018 he was presented with an Award for Excellence from the NSW Parents’ Council, for his work in promoting the mental wellbeing of young people.  From 2016, Philip has also worked at Knox Grammar School as a researcher-in-residence, developing training/education resources for students, teachers and families in the complex domain of ‘education in the digital world’.

Nichole Walker

Nichole Walker
General Manager

Throughout the years of working with many talented individuals in the financial sector, Nichole began to notice some of the challenges faced by business leaders and their employees including long hours, high levels of stress, employee burnout and the stigma of mental illness.  In 2014, she relocated to Australia to focus on how we can create better workplaces, healthier schools and flourishing communities.  She now works with her colleagues at APPLI to promote wellbeing and Mental Fitness across the lifespan.  Also a passionate advocate for Positive Education, Nichole currently sits on the Strategic Committee for Positive Education at Knox Grammar School advising on their world-renowned Positive Education program, Knox Total Fitness.  She has also recently co-authored a chapter titled ‘Habits of Mental Fitness for Staff and Student Wellbeing’ in the book Practising Positive Education: A Guide to Improve Wellbeing Literacy in Schools (2nd Ed.).

John Weeks


John Weeks

John's education career has spanned 40 years in both government and non–government schools. These schools have been in regional, country and city locations.  Throughout his teaching career, John has held different positions of responsibility including Year group Advisor, Sports Master, head Teacher, leading teacher and Principal of 3 independent schools.  Professionally, John has also been a contributing member of many professional associations including NSW History Teachers Association, Member of the Australian College of Education, Member of Australian College of Educational Administrators, Chair of Heads of Independent Schools (NSW), Co-Founder of the Hunter Region for Independent Schools (HRIS), Co-founder of New Anglican Schools Association (NASA), Member of the Association of Independent Schools NSW (AIS), Member of the Association of Heads of Independent Schools (AHISA) and Chair of the Committee of Associated Schools of NSW (CAS). John was Headmaster at the prestigious Knox Grammar School from 2005 – 2018 with a primary part of his role being to rebuild the school’s aging infrastructure, raise academic standards and expand opportunities for students. Knox has now grown into one of the largest schools in Australia with 3,300 students over three campuses and is a top 20 academic performer judged by HSC results. As Headmaster John initiated and developed a number of key initiatives which have educational significance, these include co-founder and leader of the Positive Education Schools Association (PESA) a national body promoting the research and application of positive psychology for student wellbeing, the Knox Indigenous Education Program in conjunction with Australian Indigenous Education Foundation (AIEF) and the Knox Total Fitness initiative designed to improve the overall wellbeing of staff and students.  John is also a co-founder of The Australian Positive Psychology Learning Institute (APPLI) to assist in their expansion strategy and designing courses to advance the sustainability of wellbeing across the lifespan.


Dr Steve Zolezzi

Steve Zolezzi, PhD

Dr Steve Zolezzi is a Registered Psychologist with over 25 years of experience in Education and Psychology and is a leading expert on school wellbeing and Positive Psychology practice. Steve provides educational strategic planning approaches aligned to key organisational objectives and he has worked with many schools in helping develop whole school wellbeing approaches. He consults widely both nationally and internationally in helping schools move to integrated academic and wellbeing excellence.  Steve's particular areas of expertise are Appreciative Inquiry summits, Solution-Focussed Coaching, and Strengths-Based Leadership. Steve has been a School Psychologist since 1994, having worked with the prestigious Knox Grammar School as Head of Positive Education where he received the Headmaster’s Award for Leadership in 2013.  Knox Grammar School is considered among the top three Positive Education schools in the world. Steve has also worked with the Catholic Diocese of Broken Bay, St Aloysius College, and currently as the Head of Wellbeing in the Diocese of Maitland/ Newcastle, which comprises sixty schools.  Steve is also a founding member of The Australasian Biofeedback Society and International School Psychologists Society.  He is a Qualified Teacher, certified Sports Psychologist and Physical Education Instructor.



Peter Webb, Coaching Psych

Peter Webb is a Director of Human Capital Consulting, senior leadership coach, an organisational psychologist with 18 years’ experience designing and delivering organisation development and culture change initiatives for medium to large enterprises and government agencies across the Asia Pacific region. He is internationally recognised for his research and practice in helping leaders make wise decisions under conditions of doubt, dilemma, or disruption. Peter is passionate about helping individuals, teams and organisations find new forms of thinking, being and acting in this era of historic disruption. Now, more than ever he believes leaders and their teams need the wisdom to navigate the new world of work. Peter was Director, Research and Curriculum for the International Centre for Leadership in Finance based in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, 2016-2019. He designed, managed and delivered executive education programs for senior executives and top teams across South East Asia in Shipping, Infrastructure Engineering, Banking, Financial Services, Insurance, and Energy sectors. Since 2001 Peter has been engaged by high profile private and public sector clients for assignments in Australia, including Professional Services, Mortgage Broking, State Government Health and Community Service Agencies, Urban Planning and Development, Architecture, Pharmaceutical Sales, Financial Services, Tech Services, Insurance, National Science Organisations, Legal Services, Universities, Construction, and Local Government Authorities. As a consultant, Peter specializes in helping companies and government agencies achieve productivity gains in the human dimension of their turnaround and transition planning. He easily interprets the fields of management and behavioural research to derive practical frameworks from which clients can understand their issues and collaboratively develop approaches and programs. He has developed successful programs in Leading with Emotional Capital, Leadership Decision Making, Mindful Leadership, Leading Change and Transformation, Group and Team Coaching, Difficult Conversations, Influencing Skills, Mentor Skills, Leader as Coach, and Optimal Mental Performance.


Julie Catt, Registered Psychologist

Julie Catt is a Sydney-based psychologist specialising in sexuality, gender, and relationships. Much of her work is focussed on supporting families as their young people launch into the adult world. She is co-chair on the board of Twenty10, a Sydney based service providing a broad range of specialised services for sexually and gender diverse young people, including counselling and psychological services, housing, and social support. Julie began her career in education and health in 1988 as an adolescent educator for Planned Parenthood in the United States, and studied Psychology both in the US (University of Missouri) and in Australia (Sydney University). She is also the author of Normal: The True Story of a Complicated Family, a memoir exploring families and intimacy and challenging concepts of normality (Text Publishing, 2009). Julie is proud to have also launched five of her six children successfully into the adult world, with the one still at home poised to follow over the next few years.