Tessa was born and grew up on unceded Gadigal land (Sydney), where she lives again after four years living in England, China and India.
She is the founding CEO of Health Justice Australia. Originally a criminologist, she has worked in health, criminal justice and human rights organisations in Australia and internationally. She was previously Deputy CEO of the Australian Council of Social Service and was the inaugural Fulbright Professional Scholar in Nonprofit Leadership. Tessa’s PhD looked at the detention and release of mentally disordered offenders.
She is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and combines her passions for young people and arts and culture as Deputy Chair of the Board of Gondwana Choirs, the leader in Australian choral performance.
She’s on the advisory committees of the ANU’s Menzies Centre for Health Governance, Sydney University’s Institute of Criminology and UNSW’s Social Policy Research Centre. She plays Ultimate Frisbee.
Tessa’s TEDx on health justice partnerships explains why seeing a lawyer might be good for your health and her TEDx on philanthropy through partnership argues against ‘bizsplaining’ and builds on her work as the inaugural Fulbright Professional Scholar in Nonprofit Leadership.