All of our consultants have professional qualifications with extensive post graduate experience. All psychologists and social workers are connected to their relevant professional associations and adhere to strict ethical standards.

ACCESS Programs is also fortunate to employ some multi-lingual staff, including speakers of Italian and Spanish.

Ben Wells – Manager

Dip. Management; Dip. Mental Health.

Ben has held various leadership positions in the human services sector over the last 10 years and has lead campaigns for some of South Australia’s biggest not-for-profit organisations.  He specialises in business development and is driven by innovation and creating and sustaining cohesive partnerships. He is passionate about maximising employee well-being through promoting positive workplace cultures.

Darren McGeachie – Senior Consultant

B.A. LLB (Hons); BSW; Nationally Accredited Mediator (Leadr); Cert. IV TAE.

Darren is qualified in law and social work and practiced as a solicitor in private practice for a number of years. He has worked as a Solicitor and Senior Conciliator with the Equal Opportunity Commission., joining ACCESS-OCAR in 2000. His current interests are in organisational consultancy, coaching, dispute resolution and workplace investigation. He has trained as a mediator with LEADR, and coaches trainee mediators at the University of South Australia. He lectures in law and social work at Flinders University, and is a past Vice President of the Employee Assistance Professional Association of Australia Inc (EAPAA). He also holds the Certificate iv in Workplace Assessment, and acts as a trainer in the area of case recording.

Michelle Brown – Counsellor

Masters Social Work, B. Soc Sci (Human Services), B.A. (Gender Studies), Postgraduate Certificate in Mediation (Family specialisation), Cert IV TAE.

Michelle has been providing counselling services for over 15 years and has worked in a range of sectors including educational institutions, local government, community services and health. Michelle holds positions within higher education at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels (B.Soc Sc and MSW) and works from a solid reflective practice framework to effect change. Her counselling is informed by a combination of strengths based, Mindfulness, Growth Mindset, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and goal oriented approaches, to assist clients in developing positive change in their lives.

Judith Burnell – Consultant

B.A; Masters of Mediation & Conflict Resolution; Nationally Accredited Mediator (Leadr); Grad Dip. T; Grad Dip. Ed. Admin; Cert. TESOL.

Judith is a nationally-accredited mediator, Workplace Consultant and trained Conflict Management Coach. She has an extensive background in education, including many years in leadership positions which have provided her with a rich experience and knowledge of managing workplace conflict. Her Masters of Mediation and Conflict Resolution has provided the theory on such areas as the nature of conflict at work, communication during conflict, workplace harassment and a solution-focused approach.

Valeria Cavallo – Consultant / Counsellor

Psychology (Hons).

Valeria is a Registered Psychologist who graduated in Argentina in 1987 and has an extensive background in Psychoanalysis and Clinical Psychology. She has worked overseas with adults, children and adolescents. Her expertise is in mental health and organisational issues. She has been a Consultant/Psychologist with ACCESS working with adults since 1994 and can speak, read and write fluent Spanish and Italian.

Patricia Donovan – Counsellor

B.A Social Work (Hons); Post Grad. Dip. Family Therapy; Associate Dip. Child Studies; Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Training, Mindfulness Cognitive behavioural Therapy for Professionals.

Patricia has a Bachelor of Social Work with Hons, Post Grad in Narrative Therapy and Community Work. She has worked with adults, children and adolescents, family groups and group work.   Experience and training in mental health, Mindfulness CBT, Sensory Motor Psychotherapy. In counselling roles her practice  is informed by a combination of approaches including Solution Focused, Strengths based, Motivational Interviewing , Mindfulness CBT, Narrative and Brief Therapy, Grief and Loss counselling, Sensory Motor understanding of trauma and recovery.

David Gleeson – Consultant / Counsellor

B.A.; BSoc Admin.

David has over 20 years extensive and varied clinical experience as a qualified Social Worker and Counsellor, in both the Community and Government sectors. David has worked as a counsellor for many years and also has a strong background in Vocational Rehabilitation, Disability, Case Management and Advocacy.  David enjoys working with adolescents, couples, families and groups and has a relational style, which is supported by his strengths-based approach to therapy. David is skilled in using a range of therapeutic approaches to assist clients in feeling confident to challenge themselves and make positive change.

Deanne Gray – Consultant / Counsellor

B.Social Work; Grad. Dip. Therapeutic Arts Practice; Dip. Management; Adv. Cert. Mindfulness Cognitive Behavioural Therapy; Cert. IV TAE.

Deanne has been providing counselling services for over twenty years, specialising in the areas of eating disorders, sexual abuse, mental health and within the arena of addictions (gambling, alcohol, drug and food disorders). She has held position lecturing in higher education at both undergraduate and post graduate levels (youth work and counselling) and is particularly passionate about the role of the arts in counselling approaches. She has worked across a variety of government and non-government organisations using Acceptance Commitment Therapy, together with various other approaches. She adopts a strengths based focus and encourages individuals, couples and families to embrace positive change and enhance better health and well-being.

Faye Gray – Service Coordinator

 Dip. Community Services Work; Cert. Meditation Teaching and Chair Yoga Instruction.

Faye is the first point of contact for ACCESS Programs. As the Service Coordinator Faye can direct you to the best service to suit your needs. Faye provides phone assistance in relation to Training, Critical Situation Support Services, EAP quotations and other general enquiries. She also conducts individual and group Meditation workshops through ACCESS Programs.

David Hawke – Consultant / Counsellor

Dip Couns and Group Work; Grad. Dip. Relationships Couns.

David is a qualified, experienced counsellor who welcomes the diverse range of concerns presented by individuals or couples. He came to Access Programs with extensive experience in understanding and addressing workplace related concerns. His qualifications centre on counselling generally plus a Graduate Diploma in Relationships Counselling. David is a Professional Member of the Counselling Association of SA. He applies an integrated theoretical approach to his work.

Elaine Kelly – Consultant / Counsellor

B. Social Work.

Elaine has been providing counselling services for over 20 years in government working in the education sector in the role of counsellor to staff on matters of psychological health and well-being, and Social Worker to children and families. Elaine has experience in community mental health as well as clinical mental health hospital settings. Elaine utilizes a variety of counselling approaches including Strengths Based, Solution Focused, Brief therapy, Cognitive Behavioural therapy, Mindfulness and Grief and Loss counselling.

Di Nayda – Consultant / Counsellor

B. Psychology (Hons)

Di has been providing counselling services for many years, predominantly in the area of anxiety disorders, for individuals families and couples. Di has an Honours degree in Psychology and is currently completing her Doctorate at Flinders University. She draws from a range of evidenced based therapies such as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, Cognitive Processing Therapy and Self Compassion- Based Mindfulness Therapy tailored to the individual or family to ensure the best outcome. ​Di’s primary objective is to build on the clients strengths and coping strategies, to learn new ways of managing challenging situation in order to enhance their well being and reach their potential.

Trisha O’Dea – Consultant / Counsellor

Master Soc. Sc. (Counselling) Graduate Diploma Applied Social Studies; Cert. IV TAA; Cert. IV HR.

Trisha has extensive experience in supporting personal development and learning, having worked for over thirty years as a Social Worker, Counsellor and TAFE Lecturer (Business and Management Studies) in team and in leadership positions. She has provided counselling, training, and critical situation support with Access since 2008.  She sees her role as helping people to achieve stronger participation in life and work through identifying capacities and mobilising personal strengths. She uses a combination of counselling strategies including; Solution Focused Brief therapy, Cognitive Behavioural therapy, Acceptance and Commitment therapy, Mindfulness and Grief and Loss counselling.

Cris Pirone – Consultant / Counsellor

B.A. (Psychology); B. Social Work; B. Ed (Coun)

Cris has a professional background in both Social Work and Psychology and has been a registered Psychologist since 1995. Cris is also a Full member of the Australian Society of Hypnosis. Cris has been providing psychological counselling in the areas of individual, couple and family therapy for over 20 years. Cris draws upon a range of evidence based frameworks and has clinical experience in providing Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Family Therapy, Relationship Counselling, Individual Counselling and Counselling for children. Cris aims to support and assist individuals to build upon their strengths and skills and to learn new ways of managing their concerns so that they can enhance their wellbeing, develop their potential and live the life they want to live.

Nathan Sayers – Consultant / Counsellor

B.A (Psychology), B. Social Science (Hons – Psych); Master of Psych. (Organisational & Hum. Factors), Grad. Dip. Systemic Psychotherapy (Family, Individuals & Couples).

Nathan has experience in a range of industries including 15 years’ experience working in Defence. He has a background in Psychology and Family Therapy. He has special interests in workplace and organisational issues and couples and relationship counselling. He draws from a range of evidence based approaches and techniques and favours a systemic, relational perspective of problems and solutions which encompass a wider social and relational context. He strives to help clients to harness and build upon their strengths to identify and achieve their goals.

Margaret Stevens – Consultant / Counsellor

B.A Social Work; Bachelor of Education; Cert IV Workplace Training and Assessment, JP.

Margie has complemented her formal qualifications with numerous professional development courses and certificates over a number of years in practice across a variety of interest areas including mediation, mental health, trauma, grief and loss and group work practice.
Margie has extensive experience in workplace training, coaching and mentoring across the university, state educational, business and not for profit sectors. As a Counsellor she is skilled in using a variety of therapeutic approaches to assist clients navigate a way through difficult personal situations to achieve their desired outcomes. In doing this Margie uses a variety of approaches including Strengths Based Intervention, Solution Focussed Therapy, Acceptance Commitment Therapy (ACT) Motivational Counselling, Crisis Intervention, Narrative Therapy, and a Recovery Oriented Practise approach to trauma and critical incidents.

Christine Sibley – Counsellor

B.Psych; M. Social Science (Counselling); Grad Dip. Jungian Psych; Cert. Women’s Studies.

Christine has a background in Psychology, Psychotherapy and Counselling and holds degrees in Psychology, Jungian Psychology, Psychotherapy and Counselling. She has a background working in relationship counselling, staff counselling and consultancy, psychiatric group work and EAP counselling. She uses Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, Jungian, Systemic and she likes to work in the area of loss and grief, personality and psychology.

Christine Taylor – Counsellor

B.A Social Science; Grad Dip. Counselling; Post Grad Cert. Integrative Therapy, Bower Place; Cert. IV Workplace Training & Assessment.

Christine has studied extensively and applied her training and expertise across the health, disability, mental health and education sectors for the past 15 yrs. She has worked as tutor at UniSA in the School of Social Work and Social Policy as well as holding positions of Counsellor with Mental Health and Disability Agencies. She draws on a wide range of counselling approaches and skills and adapts these according to individual needs. As a counsellor with a background in diverse sectors she has a sound understanding of the broad range of life concerns and issues clients bring to counselling such as trauma, grief and loss, anxiety and depression, relationship difficulties and workplace stress. Christine has a commitment to assisting clients find ways to cope better with difficulties and challenges in their personal, relationship, family and work life and move towards increased well-being in their lives.

Denise Wilson – Counsellor

B.Ed, Grad Dip Social Science (Counselling), Grad Dip Arts (Women’s Studies), Dip T, Certificate IV in TAE.

Denise is a qualified counsellor and trainer. She has extensive counselling and teaching experience across health, human services, NGOs and university sectors in Adelaide and overseas. She has developed mindfulness-based group work programs as well as programs for community services and women’s education. Her interests in counselling include ACT (Acceptance & Commitment Therapy), Narrative and MBCT (Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy).