The Board provides purpose, leadership, direction and overall strategy for No Strings. Board members ensure that finances are sound, that the operations are legal, that procedures work, that assets are safeguarded and that all tasks are carried out in the public interest.

Janis Lowe

Janis Lowe

Jan has extensive experience in senior Government roles in community services, social

justice, higher education and local Govenment, as well as in founding and overseeing 

social enterprises. Jan currently runs JL Consulting, a business that works

in organisational change, govenance, workplace relations, international disability

service relations and delivery of community services. Jan has served on a range of not-for-

profit boards and was a Director of Every Voice Australia and Life Without Barriers. 


Marc Makrid

Marc Makrid

With many years' experience in senior executive positions Marc founded his own

consultancy in 1993. His previous management positions include Director of Marketing

SA Brewing, and Deputy Managing Director of Dairyvale Foods. Marc has consulted

previously in the Human Resources field as a partner of Robins Whyte Makrid.

Marc advises companies nationally on high level business and marketing strategy. He

consults to a wide and varied client base across multiple industry sectors.

Marc is the Chairman of Neutrog Fertilisers, Isoton, SA Heart (Consultant Chair),

Campion Education Group, Lifestyle Bakery, FP-AG and Green Hat. He is a board

member of Cold Logic, Tristar Electrical, Power Health Solutions, Humanihut and ech.


Fij Miller

Fij Miller

Fij has served on numerous board and committees at Federal, State and Local

Government level, including as chair of No Strings from 2008 to 2013. Her qualifications

include an MBA (Advanced) at Adelaide University and she is also an alumni of Flinders

University and University of Adelaide. She is also a Fellow of the Australian Institute of

Company Directors. Fij was a Telstra Business Woman's Award SA Winner in the

Business Owner Category, was awarded a Churchill Fellowship in 2001 and received a

Centenary Medal for services to small business in 2003.


Joan O'Connor

Joan OConnor

Joan is the founding director of Global Communities for People Inc., an NGO that works

in Nepal with partners to develop programs that educate and support women and

children to become financially independent and have secure futures.

Joan has over 40 years’ experience in the education and overseas aid sectors.

Previously in her role as the Australian programs manager for Save the Children

Australia, Joan worked with partners locally and globally that developed inclusive

programs and delivered educational outcomes for children with different abilities through

the Arts. Joan has also worked as the education advisor for Overseas Aid and

Development for Caritas Australia.


Stephen Sheehan

Stephen Sheehan

 Stephen Sheehan is a performer, director and theatre maker who is known for his

creation of small-scale comic theatre works. His self-authored works include Stevl and

his Translator Fatima (Adelaide Fringe Best Comedy) and Steve Sheehan’s Tristan and

Isolde (2015 Adelaide Cabaret Festival) with a cast that included a miniature horse. He

has worked with numerous SA theatre companies and his performance work includes

Slingsby Theatre’s Tragical Life of Cheeseboy, and Patch Theatre’s Pigs, Bears and

Billy Goats Gruff, Special Delivery and Cranky Bear as well as SA State Theatre’s End

of the Rainbow, Twelfth Night and Waiting for Godot. He has directed sketch comedy

troupes The Golden Phung and Gravity Boots and performance poet Caroline Reid in



Stephen studied music at the Sydney Conservatorium before graduating from Flinders

Drama Centre and has pursued further training at Ecole Philippe Gaulier (UK) and the

Theatre Resource Centre, Toronto.


Stephen was the administrator of the Association from 2001-2004 and also worked as a

tutor and director for the Association from 1995-1998. He assisted Helen Flinter Leech,

the founder of the Association, set up many of the early governance structures and

helped her raise funds to grow the Association from being project-based to a funded

organization. He was study mentor for Rachel High in her Bachelor of Arts degree and

works with her as a support person on creative projects.


Howard Coombs

Howard Coombs square portrait

Howard is an experienced executive director, specialising in finance and strategy. He

has extensive experience serving as a board member of private companies, community

groups and not-for-profit organisations. Howard also cares for immediate family

members with a disability and is passionate about providing opportunities for

involvement for those with a disability in the community.


Jill Gael

Jill Gael portrait

Jill is a highly regarded management consultant in the areas of public sector and non-

Government organisations, with over 30 years’ experience in leading teams and

advising Boards and leaders of organisations. Jill is a former chair of No Strings (6

years), overseeing a major change process.

Skilled in management, business planning, problem solving and strategy development,

Jill has a strong capacity for developing practical solutions and innovative thinking. This

is complemented by her extensive leadership experience.

Jill focusses her professional experience and knowledge to support organisations with

strategic insight and advice on priorities identified by the organisation. She has a special

ability to bring people along through change processes.