Program Committee

  Oscar Yildiz JP, CEO, Bully Zero Australia Foundation. Program Co-Chair

Oscar Yildiz JP has a wealth of experience in a number of sectors and organisations including Teaching, Government, Marketing, Event Management, Retail and Hospitality. From acting with Jackie Chan, to being Mayor of the City of Moreland twice and current Councillor to the CEO and Founder of the Bully Zero Australia Foundation. Oscar is well respected by all forms of Government and business for rolling up his sleeves and getting the job done, he was chosen from 78 Mayors in Victoria by the Minister for Local Government Hon Jeanette Powell to serve on the Local Government Mayors Advisory Panel.

Oscar juggles life as a current Councillor, CEO of Bully Zero Australia Foundation, Justice of the Peace, husband and father. Oscar continues to write and deliver bullying prevention programs to primary/secondary students, parents, teachers and workplaces nationally.

More recently Oscar developed the radicalisation prevention program which he continues to deliver to Muslim schools, (students, teachers and parents), community organisations and sporting clubs nationally.

Having experienced bullying for 5 years in Murray Bridge SA as a youngster, Oscar knows what it feels like to be bullied and has an incredible ability to empathise with victims and families

Oscar was touched by the suicides of young individuals who were bullied and he developed many relationships with affected families to establish the Bully Zero Australia Foundation. It was in fact the finger nails of a mother who pleaded with Oscar to bring her daughter back that sparked him into action.

With the support of board members, he developed an anti-bullying organisation like no other; Bully Zero is now the fastest growing charity in Australia.

  Dr Skye Saunders, Director, ANU Legal Workshop, Australian National University. Program Co-Chair

Dr Skye Saunders is a legal academic from the Australian National University and is an advocate for issues of sexual harassment and bullying in Australia. With a particular interest in gendered harm in rural communities, she is the author of the book, Whispers from the Bush – The Workplace Sexual Harassment of Australian Rural Women. In collaboration with the Victorian Womens’ Trust, Skye has just recently finished making a short film based on Whispers from the Bush called ‘Grace Under Fire’. Skye is also the Acting Director of the Australian National University’s professional legal education programs and has formerly practised as a solicitor in the area of Employment/ Discrimination Law in Canberra. She is a regular speaker at conferences and events, both in Australia and internationally.

 margaret Dr Margaret Anne Carter, Senior Lecturer, James Cook University

Margaret Anne works as  senior lecturer Education in the areas of guidance, counselling and career development, student diversity and educational leadership. Prior to joining JCU, Margaret Anne worked in private practice as a behaviour change specialist, working with individuals and groups helping them break patterns of dysfunctional behaviours. Margaret Anne’s areas of research include cyber bullying in higher education, mental health and wellbeing, character education, and children’s social behaviour.

  Roberto Garcia, Senior Manager EY, Safety Culture and Wellbeing Strategy Specialist

Roberto is an Organisational Psychologist with more than 15 years consulting experience across both private and public sectors, including Resources, Construction, Utilities, Agriculture, Transport, Aviation, Financial Services and Federal Government Services. He has significant international consulting experience across Asia Pacific, the Middle East, North and South America.

Roberto specialises n the development of Health, Safety and Mental Health strategies, behaviour and culture change, integration of Wellbeing culture initiatives to overall organisational objectives, and leadership development.

Roberto has led multiple large scale culture change projects across Mining (iron ore, zinc, coal, copper and gold), Utilities (generation, transmission and distribution), and construction (large scale commercial, civil and mining) with significant improvement in Health and Safety performance.

Roberto holds a Bachelor of Science Degree and an Honours degree from Victoria University and a Master of Organisational Psychology degree from the University of Queensland.


Dr Ken Rigby

Dr Ken Rigby is an ex-school teacher, currently Adjunct Professor (Research) in the School of Education at the University of South Australia. He has published widely in both academic and professional journals, especially on peer victimisation. He is the author of ten books on bullying These include ‘New Perspectives on Bullying’ (2002); ‘Children and Bullying: How parents and educators can reduce bullying in schools’(2008) and ‘Bullying Interventions in Schools: Six basic Approaches’ (2010)and ‘The Method of Shared Concern: a positive approach to bullying’ (2011). He has been employed as consultant and adviser to both Australian State and Federal Education Departments. He has been engaged to speak at many conferences around the world and to provide workshops for teachers and counsellors. His work on bullying is described at


Maree Stanley, Manager, Maree Stanley Consulting

Maree Stanley was  the Manager and Founder of The Alannah and Madeline Foundation’s Better Buddies Framework – a prevention program to help schools create friendly and caring environments where bullying is reduced. A teacher for more than 20 years, Maree has considerable first-hand experience of bullying in schools. Identifying the need for national leadership around the issue of bullying, Maree approached a number of experts in the field and the result was the establishment of the National Centre Against Bullying (NCAB). For many years, Maree has worked closely with government, education departments and communities to raise awareness of the seriousness of bullying and preventative measures. Maree was the Foundation’s Project Director working with the Department of Science and Training on the National Safe Schools Framework Best Practice Grants Program providing funds, leadership, advice and direction to 171 schools around Australia. She was also the Principal Consultant working in partnership with Deakin University through the Department of Education and Training, on the Victoria Review of Antibullying Policy and Practice.

In 2004 and 2005 Maree self-funded her Masters of Education to bring a best-practice model into the redevelopment of Better Buddies. This resulted in the evidence base for the newly developed Better Buddies Framework and the publication of her thesis Buddy Systems in Australian Primary Schools: An investigation of the staff and the students’ perceptions of buddy systems in school communities. Recently, Maree has had a tree change and has moved to Bendigo working in a family business while keeping an interest in education and the wellbeing of young people.


Ms Margaret Thorsborne

Margaret Thorsborne, is the Managing Director of Margaret Thorsborne and Associates and Thorsborne and Associates in the UK. She is committed to improving the way people relate to each other in their workplaces and other communities by providing processes that allow often deeply negative feelings to be gradually transformed into cooperation. As relationships are restored, job satisfaction, morale and productivity improve.
This commitment to healthy relationships can also be found in her work with schools to improve the way they work with young people in responding to wrongdoing, creating healthier and safer communities.

She consults to public and private sector businesses and organisations for workplace relationships and the management of high-level conflict and inappropriate behaviour.

Margaret, with a strong background in education, counselling and project management, has highly developed skills as a facilitator, trainer, and presenter. She is widely recognised as an international expert on school and workplace bullying, and has played a major role in the introduction of restorative practices into schools and workplaces in Australia and internationally. She is an experienced mediator and has expertise in the management of trauma and critical incidents. Her work is informed by a range of disciplines including biology, psychology and social, organisational and management theory.

She has presented papers and workshops and conducted training across Australia, New Zealand, Canada, UK and the USA. She is a published author in the area of restorative justice in schools and workplaces and the development of leadership integrity and organisational change.

Margaret holds a Bachelor of Science Degree, a Diploma in Education (University of Queensland), and a Graduate Diploma in Counselling (Queensland University of Technology). She is a Founding Director and current Vice Chair of Restorative Practices International, a world-wide association of restorative practitioners. She is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management, and is a member of the Silvan S. Tomkins Institute in Philadelphia, USA.