Parks Victoria Executive Team
Matthew Jackson, Chief Executive OfficerMatthew joined Parks Victoria as Chief Executive Officer in February 2017.
Matthew is responsible for the strategic direction, leadership and overall management of the organisation and co-ordinates external relationships, liaising with allied organisations, government and statutory authorities.
He takes a leading position in influencing the development of policies and practices to respond to the emerging risks and adaptations posed by global climate change. He is also committed to ensuring effective organisational and people management including cultural change.
Matthew has been involved in nature-based tourism and education for most of his career. He has extensive experience in environmental research, conservation, wildlife management, operational management and stakeholder relations. He has also worked in the private sector in marketing and distribution.
Prior to Parks Victoria, Matthew was the Chief Executive Officer at Phillip Island Nature Parks. He oversaw significant change at Phillip Island Nature Parks that involved a high level of community consultation and the delivery of major environmental outcomes and significant new tourist attractions.
Matthew holds a Master of Business Administration from Southern Cross University.
Matthew is a Victorian Fellow of the Institute of Public Administration Australia (IPAA) and a Club Melbourne Ambassador.
Margaret Gillespie, Executive Director People, Safety and Risk and Chief Legal CounselMargaret joined Parks Victoria in 2006 as the Chief Legal Counsel and became Executive Director People, Safety and Risk after taking over responsibility for managing the people and culture, risk, compliance, insurance, information management and health, safety and environment functions.
She is passionate about ensuring organisational integrity, championing Parks Victoria’s Ethical Framework by running workshops with staff to embed the Public Sector Values and Parks Victoria’s Commitments. Margaret is an experienced commercial lawyer whose career has spanned private practice and in-house private sector positions in large listed companies in New York, London and Melbourne. She has extensive experience managing commercial transactions and large litigation including a Royal Commission and class action.
Margaret holds a Masters of Public International Law from the University of London and a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Melbourne. She is a member of the New York Bar.
Dr Mark Norman, Chief Scientist Conservation and Climate ActionMark joined Parks Victoria as Chief Conservation Scientist in April 2016.
Mark is responsible for Parks Victoria’s nature conservation and research programs, ensuring effective evidence-based conservation management and support for environmental program delivery across the state. The Environment and Science Division works closely with a wide range of researchers, partner agencies, Traditional Owners, stakeholders and community groups in addressing nature conservation needs and challenges.
Mark has extensive experience in wildlife research, biodiversity surveys and science communication. He is also well known as an effective science communicator.
Previously, Mark was Head of Sciences at Museums Victoria. His research background has been in marine biology but he has also worked extensively in the establishment of marine protected areas, fisheries research, bird and seal ecology, conservation programs, running terrestrial, freshwater and marine wildlife surveys, science communication, media and ecotourism.
Mark holds a Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Zoology, a Diploma of Education (Biology and Environmental Science), and a Doctorate of Zoology from University of Melbourne.
Ben Skinner, Executive Director InfrastructureBen joined Parks Victoria in January 2018 as Executive Director of Infrastructure.
Ben is responsible for Parks Victoria’s Infrastructure Capital Projects, and Infrastructure Operations. He oversees the delivery of the annual capital works program and asset management planning function including fleet and facilities management.
Ben has 16 years’ experience in engineering and capital project delivery across the private and higher education sectors in Australia and the United Kingdom.
Previously, Ben held the Acting Deputy Director Capital Works role at RMIT University and was responsible for the annual delivery of $150-200 million in capital works.
Ben holds a Masters of Business Administration and Bachelor of Engineering (Mechanical – CPEng).
Lisa Patroni, Executive Director Visitor ExperienceLisa joined Parks Victoria as Executive Director of Marketing and Communications in October 2017.
Lisa is responsible for leading unified communication to raise Parks Victoria’s profile and maintain its brand and public reputation. She is overseeing Parks Victoria’s digital transformation, which involves a new website, social media presence and accommodation booking system. Lisa is committed to building relationships with government, the tourism industry and community organisations. Her division implements volunteering, accessibility, health and wellbeing and education programs as well as increasing profile of significant heritage places.
Previously Head of International, Tourism, Government, Community and Communications at Victoria Racing Club Lisa has a strong background in marketing, stakeholder management, government relations, tourism, and major events, with a proven ability to manage complex stakeholder relationships.
Kylie Trott, Executive Director OperationsKylie joined Parks Victoria in 2005, holding numerous operational and strategic roles before being appointed as an Executive Director in April 2016.
Kylie is responsible for park operations across the state, ensuring high quality outcomes as a result of promoting a performance oriented culture that encourages accountability and service/project delivery efficiency. She is committed to connecting Victorians to nature by improving visitor experiences in our parks, waterways and the local ports (Port Phillip, Western Port and Port Campbell). She is committed to maintaining a working environment that is safe and without risks to the health, safety and wellbeing of all.
Kylie has extensive leadership, planning, policy development, project management, strategic and business reform experience. She started her career in local government as a gardener and park manager in regional parks.
Kylie holds a Bachelor of Applied Science (Environmental Management), Graduate Certificate of Applied Science (Environmental and Heritage Interpretation), Diploma of Business (Project Management) and a Diploma of Management.
Frances Li, Executive Director, Finance and Information Technology and Chief Financial OfficerFrances joined Parks Victoria in 2017 as the Director of Finance and Project Management Office and was appointed as Chief Financial Officer in 2020. She also holds the position of Executive Director for Finance and IT. Frances leads and has responsibility for Finance, Information Technology, Procurement, Project Management Office, as well as Corporate and Business Strategy.
Frances has over 20 years of experience working in finance and has held various senior leader position across the public sector in strategy and planning, financial management, shared services and project management office.
She holds a Master of Commerce (Accounting with Business Information Systems) and is a Certified Practicing Accountant (CPA).
Dan McLaughlin, Executive Director Conservation and PlanningDan joined Parks Victoria in 2003, working across numerous roles in operations, planning and programming. Following 4 years as Regional Director, Northern Victoria, he was appointed Executive Director Conservation and Planning in November 2022.
Dan leads Parks Victoria's Managing Country Together, Fire, Emergency & Enforcement, Environment & Science and Park Planning and Policy Directorates, focused on providing the strategic direction and guidance that enable Parks Victoria’s to deliver quality parks services to the Victorian community.
Raised in Wangaratta in Victoria’s north-east, Dan holds a Bachelor of Applied Science and Graduate Diploma (Parks, Recreation and Heritage), a Master of Natural Resource Management, and an MBA from RMIT.
Dan served on the Dhelkunya Dja Traditional Owner Land Management Board in Victoria’s Central Goldfields for 3 years until December 2022, guiding implementation of the Joint Management Plan for the six Dja Dja Wurrung Parks in partnership with Djaara.