Meet the Team

Meet some of the amazing people who keep us moving forward

Duncan Ward

Founder, CEO

Our founder is a real-life Peter Pan. He’s an eternal kid at heart and an avid seeker of adventure. To the best of our knowledge he doesn’t fight with pirates and he hasn’t yet learned to fly. Born and raised in South Africa, Duncan is Nelson Mandela’s number one fan and believes that ‘education is the most powerful weapon we can use to change the world’. For Duncan, every classroom we create is hope for positive change. It’s hard to keep track of all the hats Duncan has worn in his life, but to name a few: he was a sweeper of London Bridge Station, a Zoolander impersonator during his time as a male model and he also spent 17 years working as a Network Engineer and Management Consultant. Now, he is our inspirational leader, husband to Nicola and believer in all things being possible. Duncan was the recipient of the Australian Talent Unleashed Impact award from Sir Richard Branson in 2013 and also a 40under40 award winner in 2016 for his work with Classroom of Hope.

Jamie Davison

Chief Financial Officer

Jamie is our numbers guy. He takes care of COH’s financial business and we all sleep well at night knowing we’ve got Jamie on top of our numbers and figures. Jamie is the founder of Carbon Group – a one stop shop for businesses to handle accounting, bookkeeping, business systems, insurance and finance. When he’s not crunching numbers Jamie loves to travel, do Crossfit, play poker and hang with his wife, Bec, whose guilty pleasure is watching reality TV shows. Bec and Jamie had their first child last year, so that’s keeping them pretty busy too. To Jamie, education is our future. With a focus on education we can change the lives of children living in developing countries. Those children may be the young leaders of their country in the future and they can then enact further change themselves. Education, says Jamie, is the lever that allows us to create a movement that is far beyond changing a single child’s life, it can change the world.

Nicola Courtin

Creative Director

Once upon a time, Nicola lived in the land of Toronto, Canada. She must have been pretty busy over there because she managed to complete degrees in English, Socio-Cultural Anthropology and New-Media Journalism. As our Creative Director, Nicola uses her magical ability for storytelling to connect our donors with their positive impact. She feels blessed to have received valuable education throughout her life and believes that with the right mix of passion and imagination we can create a world where all children have access to quality education. Nicola is a spirited yogi and is fuelled by the energy of her daily practice. She is a lover of travel, an addict of dark chocolate and an enthusiast of astrology. It must have been written in the stars that Nicola would meet our founder when they were backpacking through Laos so they could live (and work) together happily every after.

Tracy Ward

Social Planner and Event Coordinator

It’s been said that Tracy’s laugh can be heard from Perth, Australia all the way to her homeland of Cape Town, South Africa. This is a woman with one big personality and an even bigger heart. If you’re having a bad day, just hang out with Tracy; her positive vibes are totally contagious (once she’s had her morning coffee). As a natural people person, it’s no surprise she fits perfectly as our organiser of all things related to events and social gatherings. Passionate about bringing joy into people’s lives, Tracy loves that we bring laughter and fun to children through giving them a school and playground. Some more quick facts: Tracy is our founder’s sister and Classroom of Hope’s co-founder, and she makes the most unbelievable homemade fudge (if you ask her really nicely she just might make it for you).

Damon Carter

Creative & Director, Function Creative

When we asked Damon to be our volunteer web designer, we knew we were asking a lot. Luckily for us he felt attached to our cause. See, both Damon’s parents are teachers and Damon grew up truly understanding that education is the ultimate tool that gives people choice in life. Whether he feels it’s his Karmic duty, or if it’s just because he’s an all-round nice guy, Damon happily provides us with pro-bono pixels. With a wealth of experience, Damon founded his own graphic design company, Function Creative, in 2012. When he’s detached from his computer Damon spends time with his beautiful wife, daughter and new born baby boy, or he can be found sketching in Perth’s cultural precinct, should you need him.

Geoff Bartlett

Field Photographer & IT Director

Geoff is one of those rare and fortunate polymaths. Really, this guy knows a lot about a whole lot of stuff. His wide range of expertise is one of the many reasons he’s both our IT Director and one of our field photographers. Geoff brings two decades of IT experience, phenomenal photography skills and a passion for positive change to Classroom of Hope. Driven by a desire for a just world, Geoff believes education is a right that all children should have equal opportunity to access. When he’s not helping us save the world, Geoff spends his time testing out photographic concepts on his family, riding his motorbike, swimming, practicing yoga and discussing economics with his wife. Interesting fact: Geoff’s been slapped on the back by a gorilla in a Rwandan jungle. Don’t believe us? See for yourself

Simon Elwell

Field Photographer

The Kiwi is a flightless bird, but this particular one has managed to visit over 26 countries around the world. Raised in New Zealand, Simon has nested in London, Bangkok and now roosts in Amsterdam. His background in management and sales training occupies a big chunk of his hard-drive, but his heart and soul are filled with photography and creative energy. Simon contributes his stunning photography to Classroom of Hope with a wish to ignite the hearts of those that see his images. His photographs share a story of the endless potential that exists in every child, especially when they have access to a good education. Simon has an unmatched enthusiasm for life and a completely contagious energy. We wish Simon could hang out with us all the time, but he’s understandably living a life of bike rides and picnics in Europe with his beautiful wife and daughter.

Tudor Morrow

Innovator & Ideas Generator

Tudor is an originator. We’re not sure how he does it but he constantly comes up with amazing ideas that completely blow us away. When we need a new fundraising concept we turn to Tudor. When he isn’t coming up with ideas like our #BagWalkers campaign and helping us save the world, Tudor spends his time, surfing, playing soccer, watching rugby and hanging out with his beautiful wife, son and daughter. As a father himself, Tudor understands the positive change that a quality education can bring into the life of a child. Through innovative ideas and joining together, we can create change through education.

Wendy Trow

International Development Advisor - Monitoring & Evaluation

Wendy spent the first half of her career working in the air forces of UK and Australia and in civil aviation. A life transformation happened when she decided to move to Balingup, where she joined several community groups and discovered that her real passion was in community work. She began working as a Community Development Officer for a local government and through an AusAid project Wendy made her way to live Phnom Penh, Cambodia. On her big adventure, Wendy met Racky and joined his awesome team. For Wendy, giving kids access to education is all about the empowerment of people. She is now back in Australia, but a part of her heart always stays in Cambodia, so she continues to support Racky’s team through Classroom of Hope and her own organisation One Family. Wendy visits Cambodia often where she is learning to speak Cambodian and takes hair-raising motorbike rides!