Current CFA Mentoring Program Mentees

The CFA Mentoring Program matches early to mid-career consumer advocates with highly experienced professionals who mentor them throughout the program. Participants also undertake governance training and attend a series of peer workshops. Participants develop clarity on their professional goals, improve their effectiveness as consumer advocates and learn about the consumer representative opportunities available to them.

This years mentees are:

Bettina Cooper

Bettina Cooper is an Aboriginal woman of the Boandik (Bo-Ann-Dik)  works in Mob Strong Debt Help, a First Nations led program within Financial Rights Legal Centre, as a Financial Counsellor and Strategy Lead. Bettina has a dual role as the Campaign Coordinator for the Save Sorry Business Coalition fighting for the victims of Youpla to receive a fair and culturally appropriate and timely resolution.

Bettina has extensive experience advocating for people who are disadvantaged as a result of language, literacy skills, geographical isolation, low income, disability, trauma or related factors. Bettina also serves as the Chair of the FCAN Yarning Circle as a member of the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) Customer Consultative Group, Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) Consumer Consultative Panel and on the Australian Banking Association (ABA) Consumer Outcomes Group.

Eirene Tsolidis Noyce

Eirene Tsolidis Noyce is a consumer advocate with over a decade experience in community-led campaigns, with a focus on gender and income inequality, First Nations land rights, and safe, secure and affordable housing. In the last 3 years, they co-founded the member-run Renters And Housing Union, representing Victorian renters internationally at the International Union of Tenants in 2023, and has been practicing as a Financial Counsellor with a specialisation in housing and family violence. Currently, Eirene is a Policy Officer at Consumer Action Law Centre. 
Eirene holds a Bachelor of Politics and International Relations from Monash University, and in a previous lifetime performed and taught classical and Jazz piano.

Rebekah Thielemans

Rebekah is an experienced communications and engagement professional and has worked across the not-for-profit, private, and public sectors.

Much of Rebekah’s career has focused on creating compelling content, running complex campaigns and projects, and building partnerships within the climate and environmental sector. This has included roles as Community Engagement Manager for the Climate Council, Communications Advisor for GreenHub Vietnam, and Knowledge and Communications Specialist for RACE for 2030. Currently Rebekah works as at Energy Consumers Australia as a Communications and Engagement Manager.

Rafi Alam

Rafi joined CHOICE in 2022 to work for an organisation committed to advocating for consumers in unequal and unfair markets.

Rafi has worked in organisations ranging from not-for-profits to trade unions and is passionate about seeing everyday people get a fair shot in an economy where the cost of living, exploitation, and corporate wealth skyrocket.

Rafi completed a PhD at Sydney University on community legal centres and how funding constraints affect their capacity to provide fair, safe, and effective access to justice. Rafi’s current role at CHOICE is as a senior adviser on the consumer data team where he is committed to ensuring that our digital rights and privacy are protected.

Vicki Staff

Vicki Staff is a financial counsellor from Queensland and Financial Counselling Australia’s (FCA) National Coordinator for Disaster Recovery.  She is also a co-Lead for the sector’s Practice Standards Project and a member of FCA’s core conference team.

Vicki has a degree in accounting and worked in the self-managed super fund sector for twelve years before taking up a teaching position in China where she taught accounting to senior high school students for the better part of a decade. 

In her spare time, Vicki volunteers as the Treasurer for the Centre Against Sexual Violence, an organisation which provides free counselling to women and girls as young as twelve who have experienced sexual assault.  She was invited to take up this role following her financial counselling work with survivors of institutional child sexual abuse.

Marianne Campbell

Marianne brings nearly two decades of experience in consumer and social research. After earning an Honours Degree in Psychology, she began her career at the Cancer Council South Australia where she worked with the teams responsible for the introduction of graphic pack warnings and smoke-free areas, fostering a love of data and consumer research.

Since then, she has held diverse research roles within government and the private sector, including positions at Food Standards Australia New Zealand and at a national research agency. Prior to joining Consumer Policy Research Centre (CPRC), Marianne spent close to a decade as an Agency Principal and researcher in her own boutique market and social research agency in Adelaide. Marianne has collaborated on research, campaigns, and evaluations in Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney, and North America. Memorable moments include leading the SA Police COVID Emergency Response workforce research, collaborating on an Independent Review of workplace discrimination, interviewing veterans with mental health challenges in their homes, discussing social stigmas with Australians with alcohol and illicit drug dependence over pizza, and conducting facial tracking research for a global soft drink company.

As the Senior Research and Engagement Advisor at CPRC, Marianne is passionate about designing and conducting rigorous consumer research to inform and underpin policy recommendations and reforms. Her interests lie in consumer issues of privacy and security in digital environments, scams in Australia, and the consumer impact of greenwashing.

The CFA Consumer Advocate Mentoring Program commenced for the first time in January 2021, learn more about the program, its 2023, 2022, and 2021 alumni.

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