Our Experts

Oxfam staff are able to provide expert comment or background briefings to media on a number of specialist topics. This ranges from country-specific comment to more generic issues relating to our work in areas such as labour rights, impacts of climate change and humanitarian disaster response.

Media wishing to speak to any of the Oxfam spokespeople profiled below, or with an enquiry on a topic related to our work not listed, should contact the Oxfam media team in the first instance.

Information on our directors can be found here, or if you’d like to request a speaker from Oxfam please contact us.

Our spokespeople on the issues

Kelly Dent

Labour rights, food crisis, trade

Kelly Dent | Economic Justice Coordinator
Areas of expertise: Food crisis, trade and trade-related policies, labour rights.

Kelly leads our Economic Justice team working on agriculture and sustainable livelihoods, climate change, trade and investment, and labour rights.

Kelly has worked with rural communities on trade, labour and women’s rights, and in organisations including the Clean Clothes Campaign, the Australian Services Union, and Transnationals Information Exchange. She has written a number of articles and chapters on labour rights and corporate codes of conduct, and worked in Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Thailand, Bangladesh, Hong Kong and the Netherlands.

Steph Cousins

Humanitarian issues

Steph Cousins | Humanitarian Advocacy Coordinator
Areas of expertise: Coordination of aid, humanitarian issues, Arms Trade Treaty

Steph Cousins is the Humanitarian Advocacy Coordinator at Oxfam Australia. Her work focuses on promoting the rights of people affected by crisis to assistance and protection. She also advocates for the prevention of conflict, mass atrocities, arms proliferation and armed violence. Steph is the current Chair of the Pacific Small Arms Action Group and Secretary of the International Detention Coalition Governance Committee. She has worked extensively with partner organisations, former refugees and diaspora communities in Australia around humanitarian crisis issues.

Andrew Hartwich

Southern Africa

Andrew Hartwich | Southern Africa Regional Manager
Areas of expertise: HIV and AIDS, Southern Africa

Andrew is our expert on HIV and AIDS in developing countries and our work in Southern Africa. Andrew joined Oxfam Australia in 2003 and has spent most of his career in aid and development, specialising in the HIV sector with a particular focus on home-based and community care, harm reduction and sex worker rights. Andrew has worked in these areas in Australia, Cambodia and India.

South Asia

Stuart Highton| South Asia Regional Manager

Stuart Highton

Areas of expertise: Sri Lanka, India, Bangladesh and Afghanistan

Stuart manages our programs in South Asia, including Sri Lanka, India, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. Before joining Oxfam Australia in 2008, Stuart worked for 9 years as a Country Director with Concern Worldwide in Laos and Zambia where he developed an expertise in livelihoods, HIV&AIDS and Disaster Risk Reduction programming. Previously he had worked in a variety of development and humanitarian positions with different agencies in countries in Africa, Asia and the Caribbean. Stuart started his relief and development career as a volunteer in Sri Lanka where he went on to work as ICRC protection officer and then relief Coordinator with Oxfam GB. In Africa he worked on emergency programmes in Liberia with Medecins Sans Frontiers and he also did a stint as the Country representative of Children’s Aid Direct in Haiti in the mid 1990s.

Serena Lillywhite

Corporate responsibility

Serena Lillywhite | Mining Advocacy Coordinator
Areas of expertise: Corporate responsibility with a primary focus on mining, human rights, labour rights and international accountability mechanisms.

Serena Lillywhite is the Mining Advocacy Coordinator with Oxfam Australia. She is an active corporate responsibility practitioner, researcher and advocate. She has extensive expertise and experience in labour rights, supply chain management and business and human rights. Serena is Australia’s leading expert in the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. She is a regular speaker at the OECD, UN and ILO, and other international CSR platforms. Serena works regularly with the business community to foster dialogue and multistakeholder approaches to responsible business conduct. Serena holds a Masters in International Business from the University of Melbourne. She has lived and worked in China, and as a member of the OECD Watch network and Coordinating Committee, has delivered training and capacity building in Ghana (extractive sector), India (garment sector) and Thailand (business and human rights).

Michael Simon

Mekong development, Asian Development Bank

Michael Simon | Advocacy Coordinator, People, Infrastructure and Environment Program
Areas of expertise: Impact of large-scale development projects such as dams and roads on communities in the Mekong region, the workings of the Asian Development Bank and the importance of healthy rivers and fisheries for livelihoods

Michael leads our advocacy program in the Mekong region supporting the rights of communities affected by large-scale infrastructure projects. He also represents Oxfam International in the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Forum.

Since joining Oxfam Australia in 1996, Michael has led high-level representation to governments, multilateral organisations and business. He has extensive field experience, having worked in South Asia, East Asia, South America, Africa, the United States and Europe.

Our spokespeople in country

Our media team can put you in touch with expert spokespeople from these countries:

  • Bangladesh – Disaster management, women’s rights, Indigenous people’s rights, climate change adaptation work
  • Cambodia – Sustainable livelihoods, access to social services
  • China – Community health, livelihoods
  • Fiji – Peace building, natural resource exploitation
  • India – Reducing inequality for women, natural resource management, disaster management
  • Laos – Sustainable livelihoods, education
  • Malawi – Sustainable livelihoods, HIV and AIDS
  • Mozambique – Sustainable livelihoods, food security, HIV and AIDS
  • Papua New Guinea – HIV and AIDS, natural resource exploitation
  • Solomon Islands – rebuilding after 2007 tsunami, food and livelihood security, gender and domestic violence, sustainable resource development, HIV and AIDS
  • South Africa – HIV and AIDS, gender equality, food security
  • Sri Lanka – Sustainable livelihoods, gender equality
  • Timor-Leste – Sustainable livelihoods, agriculture, access to basic services, safety from conflict and disaster
  • Vanuatu – youth education, health, HIV and AIDS Vietnam – Disaster management, clean water and sanitation, anti-trafficking
  • Zimbabwe – HIV and AIDS, food security

Media contacts