Families Australia staff, based in Canberra, are as follows:

Dr Brian Babington: Chief Executive Officer. Brian also serves as the Co-Chair of the National Forum for Protecting Australia’s Children, and Coordinator of the National Coalition on Child Safety and Wellbeing.

Stella Conroy: Deputy Chief Executive Officer

Jennifer Horsfield: Office Manager and Manager of National Families Week

Elizabeth Hunter: Events and Communications Manager

Fiona Langford: Accounts Manager

Eileen O’Brien: Policy Consultant

Helen Bedford: Policy Consultant


Dr Brian Babington—Chief Executive Officer

A social change proponent, diplomat and author, Dr Babington has worked for over three decades for stronger communities, families and individuals in Australia and developing countries, particularly in Asia.

Since 2005, he has been the CEO of Families Australia, a national, not-for-profit peak body that advises the Australian Parliament and Government on ways to improve the wellbeing of disadvantaged families and children. He plays leadership roles in numerous national and international bodies, particularly as convenor of the National Coalition on Child Safety and Wellbeing and as a director of a major international child-centred community development agency, Plan International Australia. He is also the founding editor of the Indonesian Orphanages Research Hub, a web-based resource that focuses attention on the wellbeing of children living in Indonesian orphanages or panti asuhan.

Among other achievements, he established an innovative social venture firm to advance Indigenous leadership, authored a book on managing personal adversity, and directed Australia’s aid program in rural and remote parts of Burma. He represented Australia at four UN General Assemblies in New York on development and economic issues, and was awarded a PhD by the Australian National University for his research into Indonesian Government policymaking with regard to children in orphanages. Read more.

Stella Conroy—Deputy Chief Executive Officer

Stella is the Deputy CEO of Families Australia and has a long history of employment in human services including early childhood and family services, disability housing and aged care. Stella has held leadership and management positions in organisations that support families across the life course, including Forgotten Australians, Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander children and families, sole parents and culturally diverse families and children.

Stella’s employment has taken her to many locations around Australia including major capitals and remote localities. Currently, Stella is working on a range of national policy initiatives including the National Framework for Protecting Australia’s Children 2009 – 2020, providing secretariat support for the National Coalition on Child Safety and Wellbeing and on national policy relating to work and family. She has completed various post-graduate studies and holds a Masters in Human Services.

Jennifer Horsfield—Office Manager & Manager of National Families Week

Jennifer is the Office Manager and Manager of National Families Week. She has had a long career in office work, being employed by organisations throughout Australia and overseas. She enjoys being part of the team at Families Australia and working to promote the interests of families.

Elizabeth Hunter—Events and Communications Manager

Elizabeth has been a teacher and administrator in early childhood, Montessori primary and adult education. Interspersed with teaching, she has worked in the non-government and private sectors, principally in communications, marketing and event management. Inspired by social policy, Elizabeth enjoys sharing the projects and achievements of Families Australia with our members and the wider community.

Fiona Langford—Accounts Manager

Fiona joined Families Australia in October 2010 as part time bookkeeper.  Fiona is a qualified accountant and tax agent and has been previously employed in finance and administrative roles with the Playgroups Council of Australia, a couple of local schools and a local church. She is also currently employed with Canberra’s oldest amateur theatre company. Outside of paid employment, Fiona is an active Girl Guide leader and is on the Board of Girl Guides NSW and the ACT.

Eileen O’Brien—Policy Consultant

Helen Bedford—Policy Consultant