About Us

Port Stephens Koalas

Port Stephens Koalas was established in 2016.  This organisation is the new embodiment of the Hunter Koala Preservation Society (HKPS) formed in June 1987.

The name change of our organisation became necessary as technology advanced and people outside the Hunter Valley interested in our koalas, misinterpreted “Hunter” as meaning that we are “hunting” koalas, when our intentions are about “saving” koalas.  Statutory obligations had also progressed so greatly that a new constitution was necessary.  Further, to raise more funds to support our work, the Society needed to gain Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) status through the Register of Environmental Organisations (REO).  The Society is now a company limited by guarantee and well placed for the future.

The main impetus for our formation was the continual threat to koalas from impending development and the resultant loss of their habitat.  The Society maintains a comprehensive data base of sick and injured koalas’ statistics going back to 1995 which assists in identifying accurately where this unique Australian marsupial lives.

Port Stephens Koalas aims to provide the world best practice standards of care to sick, injured and orphaned koalas to give them the best opportunity to be returned to the wild, while supporting research and collaboration to preserve their habitat to ensure that future generations may continue to enjoy seeing wildlife in their natural setting.

CLICK ON THIS LINK TO READ OUR CONSTITUTION

These people all volunteer their time and skills to help Port Stephens Koalas:

Carmel Northwood
PRESIDENT, CARER AND RESCUER
President (2016), Carer and Rescuer since 2010, with broad understanding of Habitat, Care and Rescue, Hospital, Promotions and Committee operations.
president@portstephenskoalas.com.au
Ron Land
SECRETARY & PUBLIC OFFICER, KOALA HOSPITAL PROJECT MANAGER, PUBLIC FUND DIRECTOR
Major project manager in Australia & internationally. Past Chairman/Director Auscoal, Joint Coal Board, Westpac Rescue Helicopter service. Cert 4 Trainer Assessor. Level 4 Mine Safety Competent.
secretary@portstephenskoalas.com.au
Simone Aurino
CARE AND RESCUE COORDINATOR
Coordinator for several years, since training in 2012. Simone passionately supports scientific research to help save our koalas and their habitat.
care_coordinator@portstephenskoalas.com.au
Karen Harris
TREASURER
Karen runs a successful accounting and bookkeeping business. Living in Mallabula, Karen recognises the dwindling number of koalas visiting her property and wants to help reverse that trend.
treasurer@portstephenskoalas.com.au
Anita Marshall
Director and Fundraising Officer
Anita Marshall is a local mortgage broker who is passionate about "making a difference" and giving back. Anita has lived in Port Stephens for many years and donates a great deal of her time to various volunteer projects, she enjoys bush walking, country music and water sports.
amdirector@portstephenskoalas.com.au
Michael Clarkin
DIRECTOR
TAFE teacher and Workcover High Risk Assessor, Michael is focusing on the Hospital project - policies, training and risk analysis, and becoming aware of koala care needs.
mcdirector@portstephenskoalas.com.au
Julie Jennings
DIRECTOR, CARER AND RESCUER
“I want to continue seeing koalas in my garden.” This simple phrase motivated Julie to become a carer. Julie is also SLSC lifeguard at Fingal Beach.
jjdirector@portstephenskoalas.com.au
Vanessa Keating
DIRECTOR, RESCUER AND SUPPORT CARER
Vanessa has an affinity with all animals, but especially horses and koalas. She’s been rescuing koalas for a few years and has seen us grow from a small group to a much larger one and has now volunteered to help us on the Board of Directors as well.
vkdirector@portstephenskoalas.com.au
Alison Blanch
DIRECTOR AND PROMOTIONS OFFICER
Volunteer (2016) assisting with Administration and Promotions.
promotion@portstephenskoalas.com.au
Dr Rod Starr
Public Fund Chair
OAM for service to veterinary science and community
Click on the link below to find out more about Dr Rod Starr
http://www.portstephensexaminer.com.au/story/3859900/starrs-oam-for-service-to-vet-science-and-community/
Louise Catlow
Director, Public Fund
Solicitor and Principal of LMC Lawyers, Nelson Bay. The public fund will collect donations for Port Stephens Koalas.
Kate King
HOSPITAL COORDINATOR
Kate has a Certificate IV in Captive Animal Management and a passion to learn as much as she can about caring for wild koalas. Kate is the Coordinator of our new rehabilitation facilities.”
hospital_coordinator@portstephenskoalas.com.au
Sue Swain
JOEY COORDINATOR, CARER & RESCUER
Sue has been a carer and rescuer since 2004 and was President for 4 years. Sue is the Joey Care Coordinator, provides backup to Simone and supports all the carers.
Marion Land
CARER & RESCUER
Marion’s carer training is so she can support home carers as well as the Hospital. Her background is in TAFE teaching Communications and Administration.
Murray Black
Database Officer
Having a wealth of experience in koala care and rescue, Murray’s most important role now is to keep accurate data to prove where koalas live due to the constant threat of clearing habitat for development.
Tracy Kelly
Media Officer
An adventurous nature enthusiast and an animal lover at heart with a passion for wildlife and conversation. Volunteering with PSK allows me to help keep his special Australia’s iconic creature in this region. I look forward to completing the training to become a koala support carer.
Lynda Simon
SUPPORT CARER AND RESCUER, ADOPT A KOALA PROGRAM OFFICER
With international experience in marketing, Lynda is a member of the Promotions Sub-Committee.
Kass Hay
VOLUNTEER
Since the day I saw an injured koala rescued near my own house, I’ve wanted to help in some way.
Steve Aurino
Mason Aurino
ASSISTANT RESCUER AND CARER SUPPORT
Mason has a lot of knowledge about koalas at just 11 years of age. He’s interested in all animals, particularly snakes.
Bailey Aurino
Julie Black
VOLUNTEER
An experienced former carer, Julie and her husband Murray provide rescue support by transporting koalas. Julie plans to volunteer at the Hospital in the future.
Terry Delaney
VOLUNTEER
An 81 year old retired coal miner who provides leaf picking and rehab yard support for carers. He is enjoying koala caring immensely.
John Evans
RESCUER
I saw many injured Koalas who needed rescuing from power poles when I worked for Ausgrid. A rescue of a mother and baby led me to join Port Stephens Koalas. It’s very satisfying to play a part in helping these highly endangered animals.
Brian Gordon
RESCUER AND CARER SUPPORT
Supporting his wife Carmel Northwood’s obsession with koalas since 2010
Morton Jennings
CARER SUPPORT
Morton enjoys building stuff and fixing anything. Currently studying at school, he is also a surf lifesaver at Fingal beach (in the top 5 for shark attacks)
Zoe Lawrence
VOLUNTEER
Zoe is a Natural History Illustration student with a passion for art and wildlife. She has assisted with graphic design elements of the website and Adopt a koala certificate.
Noel Swain
RESCUER AND CARER SUPPORT
Noel provides support to Sue and knows more than he lets on. He is expert at leaf picking, log collection and construction for cages, and repairing leaf cutters.
June Wheen
RESCUER AND CARER
Rescuer and carer since 2010, although her pet dogs and frequent holidays limit her caring capacity. June is an artist and potter.
Doug Wheen
RESCUER
Rescuer since 2010 with a background in forestry.
Roz Scoles
CARER SUPPORT
Roz is extremely passionate about preserving habitat and the unique wildlife of Port Stephens, so she is doing something practical and enjoyable to support busy carers.
Naomi Downie
RESCUER
An animal lover who wants to help her community, Naomi was encourage to help her partner John as a rescuer. As Naomi works she can only help after hours, but that’s often when rescues happen.
Rob Grant
VOLUNTEER
A semi-retired mechanical engineer with extensive management experience as CEO of two major global companies, Rob’s focus is on the Hospital project.
Gai Hart
MEMBERSHIP OFFICER AND SUPPORT CARER
I have loved koalas since I was a little girl but never thought I would get the opportunity to actively work with them. I am so happy learning about these complex creatures and now appreciate their delicate situation in our area and Australia. I know they desperately need our help.
membership@portstephenskoalas.com.au
Geoff Hart
HABITAT VOLUNTEER
Old Chinese Proverb: The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The next best time is now. As one large tree can be cut down and mulched in an hour, "now" is critical. I've always been passionate about trees, seeing them grow not destroying them. I’m helping to cultivate a plantation of food trees.
Lynette Grigg
TRAINEE SUPPORT CARER
We can’t let this iconic creature in the wild disappear without making the best effort we can to save it.
Jo Holmquest
TRAINEE SUPPORT CARER AND RESCUER
“I want to continue seeing Koalas around the Tilligerry and Port Stephens area, and want to help in any way I can.
Paul Holmquest
TRAINEE SUPPORT CARER AND RESCUER
To help preserve the Koalas habitat in the Port Stephens area to help this highly endangered species from becoming extinct.
Sue Bennett
VOLUNTEER
I have decided to volunteer after being lucky enough to have koalas in my yard and would like to help keep their survival rates as high as possible so maybe others can share the same experience.
Christine Johnson
VOLUNTEER
I love living in Port Stephens and I want to help preserve our local wildlife for future generations. It's essential we all share our space, live well and thrive.
Vicki Harris
VOLUNTEER
I am a retired school teacher and nature lover. I realise how important it is to preserve our native animals' environment for the health of the earth and so our grandchildren will enjoy the beauty of our natural surroundings. The koala's future is in crisis and they need our help to fix this problem, that humans have created.
Heather Forbes
VOLUNTEER
Heather currently works in aged care and was wanting to do something different for the community, so when she heard about the disappearing koala population in Port Stephens and a call for volunteers, she thought what an excellent cause. And of course, how can you not love koalas!