Our Staff

The Rural Alive and Well Inc team are made up of the following people.

Liz Little

Chief Executive Officer

(03) 6254 1092

Liz studied social work at the University of Sydney, her first job was in mental health and was soon one of Australia’s first street based youth workers in Griffith NSW and has worked with local government youth work in Australia and London. Liz has since managed local government community services and in 1983 was a lecturer, then senior lecturer at the School of Social Work at the University of Tasmania, then completed her Masters in Social Sciences.

In 1990 she moved to the Department of Premier and Cabinet where she established the Tasmanian Office of the Status of Women. She briefly served as the Director of the Policy Division of the Premier’s Department and was then appointed as Tasmania’s inaugural Sex Discrimination Commissioner.

In 2001 she became Principal Consultant with the Department of Justice and headed up the Strategic Policy and Projects branch where she was responsible for the design and implementation of the whole-of- government Safe-at- Home family violence program; the establishment of the Court Mandated Diversion of Drug Offenders program (Drug Courts); and, sex offender treatment programs. Liz also participated in the Australia-Vietnam Joint Program on Gender Equality in relation to eliminating violence against women; the Australian Human Rights Technical Cooperation Program by delivering training in China; and in 2011 was invited to speak at the House of Lords in London on the elimination of domestic violence.

Liz retired from the Tasmanian public service in 2009 but soon decided to take up the role of CEO of the Sexual Assault Support Service (SASS) in 2010. Liz was Chair of the National Association of Services Against Sexual Violence (NASASV) for 3 years.

Darren Thurlow

Outreach Team Leader South

0428 333 517

Darren has been working as an Outreach Worker for RAW since 2013, as well as working on the road, he is manager of the southern Outreach team. Darren is passionate about his job and finds helping those in need extremely rewarding.

Darren grew up in Howrah, and attended St. Virgil’s College. Prior to working for RAW, Darren drove trucks for twelve years around Tasmania and Australia and was also involved in the Forest Industry. 

Darren decided to have a career change after he thought the Forest Industry would fold, and applied as a youth worker with the Salvation Army in the therapeutic care units. From the Salvation Army, Darren became a case manager in a Drug and Alcohol Rehab centre in Ellendale.  After about six months working in this role, Darren applied for the position with RAW and was appointed as an Outreach Worker.  Darren has been in this role since early in 2013 and he has enjoyed every day at work.

Darren helps those doing it tough in the Southern Midlands area.


Peta-Maree Davidson

Business Services Team Leader

(03) 6254 1092

Peta grew up on a small property in Campania, where her parents own an angora goat farm. Before moving to Campania, her family had a sheep and a commercial chicken farm at Eagle Hawk Neck. She was also a member of Rural Youth. Before working at RAW Peta was the Business Manager at an electrical business and prior to that she worked in the wine industry as an Office Manager for 13 years.

Peta joined the RAW team to use her skills in assisting others, and to get back to dealing with the rural industry. She is passionate about the agriculture sector, farming life, preserving, developing and maintaining the land for future generations, and also the freedom and open space that rural setting brings. Peta loves rural Tasmania for its lifestyle and the personalities and true characters of the rural community.


John Clark

Training and Capacity Building Team Leader / Outreach Worker

0429 157 738

John grew up on a family sheep and cattle farm in Victoria. He moved to Melbourne to complete a Bachelor of Chemical Engineering, which led him to work in the Pulp and Paper Industry, and in turn brought about a move to Tasmania. After the demise of the industry in the North West, John switched to the community services sector for eight years.  In this role John experienced a serious burnout and after some time in recovery, commenced work with Anglicare as a Family Mental Health Outreach Worker supporting families who were affected by mental illness.

John is a qualified Mental Health First Aid Trainer, a volunteer speaker for beyondblue and Suicide Prevention Australia and is passionate about reducing stigma around mental illness, suicide and encouraging others to get help either for themselves, their families or their mates. John is equally passionate about his three children and wife of 25 years.

If John isn’t out and about talking to mates, you can find him bushwalking Tasmania’s mountains; fly fishing the pristine lakes; hunting and woodworking, cycling or volunteering for the SES Search and Rescue team. Whenever he can, John gets back to Victoria on the family farm because there’s never an end to the work to be done.


Amity Deans

Healthy and Resilient Community Facilitator

0427 418 345

Amity has worked in rural and remote communities with families and young people for the past 10 years. Amity has a Diploma in Community Services and also a Diploma in Children’s Services.

Prior to RAW Amity was employed at the Dunalley Tasman Neighbourhood House as the Family Support Worker.  Amity played an integral role in supporting isolated families and individuals with complex needs and also facilitating programs and activities to enhance community engagement and connectedness. 

Post the Dunalley Bushfires in 2013 Amity worked alongside the Dunalley Primary School, Beyond Blue, Anglicare, local council and many other service providers and organisations to promote and assist with the recovery of the community. 

Amity believes that often people and communities carry within themselves their own solutions, they just need the encouragement and support to find it.

Amity enjoys a busy, fun and active lifestyle with her three children. 


Andrew Baker

Outreach Worker

0400 131 256

Andrew grew up in the Huon, and is a fourth generation member of one of the largest families in the area. He currently lives in rural Sandford but recently lived in the Oatlands area on a part time basis for three years, and before that on the Eastern Shore.

Growing up in rural areas, Andrew has seen his family adapt over time as economic change has seen the demise of the Logging, Apple and Fishing Industries.

As a third generation Firefighter for a number of years, Andrew learnt the skills and understanding to deal with many real life emergency situations as a first responder.

He has managed a large number of people in a number of organisations across urban and rural Tasmania, he understands rural and remote communities and is passionate about their health and well-being.


Ebony De Jesus

HaRC Facilitator / Outreach Worker

0429 473 183

Ebony joined Rural Alive and Well in the role of Healthy and Resilient communities Facilitator for the North. In this role Ebony is engaging and networking in rural and remote communities, to established community groups with a focus on mental health, wellbeing and suicide prevention. Ebony is about to graduate from University of Tasmania with a Bachelor of Social Work degree, and this has given her a variety of opportunities to work within different organization. Such organization as the Deloraine Neighborhood House in which she collaboratively worked with the community on a project ‘Life Portraits”  in which highlighted the diversity and lived experiences in the ageing community. Other organization Ebony has had the opportunity to work within is the Deloraine Hospital and Deloraine High School, in which she was involved in a variety of collaborative projects and individual supporting roles.

Rhonda Gee-Mackrill

Outreach Worker

0418 473 293

Rhonda joined the RAW team in August 2015, assigned to her local area in the north-east of Tasmania, she enjoys supporting and talking to rural, remote and isolated families.

Rhonda’s has over 12 years of experience in clinical and non-clinical mental health services, where she has gained the skills and knowledge to help those in need today. She has experience working with a large range of issues, including mental Illness; family violence; sexual assault; drug and alcohol abuse; suicide prevention; Optimal Health; and grief and bereavement in families of those affected by suicided. Rhonda has supported people with mental illness, their carers, family and friends.  She is a Clinical Hypnotherapist, Psychotherapist and alternative therapy practitioner. Rhonda is a steering committee member of the mental health professionals networking committee providing education, information and presentations to other health professionals and community members. Her passion is recovery from mental health and well-being issues, suicide prevention and supporting those in rural, remote and isolated communities to connect and access supports in their local and surrounding areas.

Rhonda’s inclusive practice ethics work to ensure RAW’s services are culturally sensitive, meeting the diverse needs within communities.  Recognising that peoples cultural backgrounds, religious beliefs, gender and sexual identity can have an important role to play in their mental health and well-being. “Acceptance, Equity, Flexibility, Committment and Participation”

Rhonda is married and enjoys spending time with her two adult daughters, travelling and socialising with friends.


Martin Howell

Outreach Worker

0408 478 993

Martin has a strong background of working in mental health and supporting people and families with complex needs living in isolated and remote areas.

He has also worked in policy, program planning, training and development and human resources, with the aim of developing and delivering programs that assist people to understand and respond to their current circumstances and developing strategies that assist them to achieve their desired outcomes.

In 1986 Martin was named Tasmanian Community Express Hero of the year for his work in the disability field. In 1987 he was named Jaycee’s Young Australian of the year in recognition for his work in the disability and mental health fields.

Martin has served on the board of several not-for-profit organisations, and has worked with others to achieve and improve the desired outcomes of those who experience isolation and segregation from main stream community activities.

Martin been an Industry Chaplain for both government and non-government agencies for many years and has forged an extensive working partnership with employers, employees and the community, particularly within the rural areas of Tasmania.

Martin has a Diploma of Pastoral Ministry and is an accredited grief and loss counsellor. He also has accreditation in Clinical Pastoral Ministry and Counselling.


Kristy Mayne

Outreach Worker

0428 145 319

Kristy has worked at RAW for the past 9 years, the last 3 years as a Rural Outreach Worker before Kristy worked in the RAW Business Services area.

Kristy enjoys helping those in the Central Highlands, Southern Midlands and the Derwent Valley as a Rural Outreach Worker.

Kristy is currently completing a certificate IV in Alcohol and other Drugs. Before working for RAW, Kristy was involved in the aged care and disability sector.

When she isn't on the road talking to the MATES of RAW, Kristy enjoys playing netball, camping and fishing with her family. Kristy and her husband live in the Central Highlands with their four sons.


Jayne Pike

Outreach Worker

0439 689 430

Jayne Pike was born in St Helens and loves her local area for its beaches, forests and sense of community. Before joining the RAW team Jayne studied social work and worked at Medea Park Residential Care as a Personal Care Assistant, before that she was a Personal Carer for Family Based Care. She has also worked in hospitality, including working as a stewardess in the Merchant Navy.  Jayne’s skills don’t stop there, she has also done fish management and processing, worked as a deckhand on a cray and scallop boat, and book keeping and banking.  Jayne has a Certificate II and III in Aged Care, and a Bachelor of Arts and Social Work. But Jayne says her most challenging position has been raising a family; she is a proud mother of three.

Jayne loves working at RAW because of the autonomy of her position and her co-workers, but most of all because of the feeling that comes from making a positive difference in people’s lives.  Jayne’s faith in human rights and social justice led her to social work, and thus led her to utilising those skills working for RAW.