Member of the Month

We have teamed up with Hunter Headline for our Member of the Month series, which recognises our extraordinary members; those excelling in their careers and those who go above and beyond to benefit the community. Each month the hyp selects one member from the list of nominees for the title of hyp Member of the Month.

To be selected, a fellow member, work colleague, boss or friend, must recognise the hard work you put in and they must nominate you online here. If you know of a member who deserves the recognition for their hard work please tell us in 200 words or less why they deserve to be the hyp member of the month.

Some general rules:

  • Anyone can nominate, but successful nominees are selected by the hyp board.
  • Nominations must be for hyp members only.
  • The successful nominee will be contacted prior to hyp publishing them through our media platforms.
  • The successful nominee will also have an opportunity to be promoted as the Hunter Headline’s Young Gun.

NOVEMBER member of the month

Stephane Bredenbac | Pharmacist | Blooms The Chemist

Stephane is an early career pharmacist who graduated from the University of Sydney with a Bachelor of Pharmacy, majoring in community retail pharmacy. He has completed an advanced diploma in Pharmacy leadership through the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia and is certified in complex pharmaceutical compounding. Stephane is a previous winner of the Aspen Medical Innovative pharmacist of the year award. Read more about Stephane.

October member of the month

Nicki Sharpe | Senior People Safety & Culture Advisor | Life Without Barriers

Nicki is a Senior HR professional in one of Australia’s leading Social Purpose organisations with experience across a range of roles in both the Corporate and Client services space. Nicki brings life to conversations, is passionate about connecting people and assisting them in reaching their potential. Read more about Nicki.


September member of the month

Tom Hartigan l Mechanical Engineer | Hunter Water

I’m a husband, a father to one fur baby, a lover of sports, a terrible dancer and tarred with the same geeky brush as all engineers. I’ve been working with the Investment and Asset Planning team at Hunter Water for three years since returning from the Oil & Gas industry in Asia and have recently moved into our Drought Response team in a Team Leader role. Read more about Tom.


AUGUST member of the month


I am a keen philanthropist, a dog lover and an accounting disruptor. I’m the Manager of Profit For Purpose at BeLLCORP Accountants and I genuinely love what I do. Having worked in accounting and finance for over 15 years, I’ve experienced a range of industries from health insurance and mining services to education and charities.  Read more about Bernadette.


July member of the month

Ben Slack l Heritage Consultant l RPS Group

Born and raised in Newcastle, Ben studied a Bachelor of Archaeology at the University of New England. He was lucky enough to land a job as a Heritage Consultant right here in Newcastle, although being an archaeologist, Ben’s work often takes him around the country. Ben has a very understanding wife and two young kids so weekends are filled with a mixture of family time and house renovations. Read more about Ben.


June member of the month

Isaac Jeffrey l Managing Director | caduceus pr

With a business degree from Newcastle University in hand, Isaac headed for Canberra and spent a decade working for the Australian Government. He started his professional career as a Graduate at the Department of Defence before moving into politics where he rose through the staffer ranks to take on senior manager roles including Principal Private Secretary and Chief of Staff. Read more about Isaac.


MAY member of the month

Carly Finch l Promotions Director | Southern Cross Austereo

Carly is the Promotions Director at Southern Cross Austereo (Hit106.9 and Triple M) where I have worked for just over 6 years. After completing high school I moved to London for 2 years to see the world, whilst there I began a Bachelor of Business in Convention and Event Management and completed this when I returned to Australia. Read more about Carly.


April member of the month

Nibir Hossain l Dentist |NSW Health

Nibir currently works as a dentist at NSW health in Newcastle. He graduated with a dental and physiotherapy degree from the University of Sydney. Nibir has been living in Newcastle for the past 12 months and enjoys having an active social and family life.

Read more about Nibir.


March member of the month

Stephanie Jordan l Sales Consultant | Dalton Partners Real Estate

Stephanie started her career as a HR advisor in the mining construction industry after completing a Bachelor of Business at the University of Newcastle. Stephanie now specialises in residential sales and spends much of her time getting to know her community.

Read more about Stephanie.


February member of the month

Liam Buxton l Project Planner | Barr Property and Planning

Liam is a Newcastle born-and-bred NBA fanatic who has had a diverse career as a Chemist and is now currently employed by Barr Property and Planning as a Project Planner. Liam lives by the motto “Everything happens for a reason.”

Read more about Liam.


January member of the month

Kathleen Mackay l Business Owner | KMackay Photography

Kathleen Mackay is the owner/operator of her photography business KMackay Photography. She specialises in a various range of areas including Corporate, Real Estate, Landscape, Social and Food photography. Initially she had the idea to become a Creative Director which led her to pursue Fine Arts at the University of Newcastle.

Read more about Kathleen.


December member of the month

Danielle O’Neill l Business Banking Manager | NAB

Danielle is currently working as a Business Banking Manager for the National Australia Bank. In her current role she is responsible for managing a portfolio of Business clients looking after both their business and personal banking needs. Danielle has been working for the NAB for almost five years, starting her journey as an Industry Scholar working for the company while completing her degree.

Read more about Danielle.


NOVEMBER member of the month

Quinton Andrew l Oral Health Therapist | Live Life Smiling Orthodontics

Quinton is an Oral Health Therapist at Live Life Smiling Orthodontics in Broadmeadow. His role includes placing and removing braces, managing the oral health of patients, and adding the final aesthetic touches to teeth. Quinton studied at Griffith University in the Gold Coast, before moving to Cairns to begin his career. Quinton moved to Newcastle 2 years ago and is finding the Newcastle lifestyle great. In his free time, he likes to stay active, playing cricket and touch football.

Read more about Quinton.


OCTOBER member of the month

Hayden Asper l Chartered Accountant | Jirsch Sutherland

Hayden Asper is a Chartered Accountant and manager at Jirsch Sutherland, a local firm that specialises in providing options and solutions to financially distressed businesses and people. Hayden is a proud Novocastrian who looks for ways to give back. In addition to his day job, Hayden is the Treasurer for Disability Advocacy NSW, the Mid-North Coast Community Legal Centre and the Bean Counters Ball.

Hayden attended the University of Newcastle and is a professional member of Chartered Accountants Australia & New Zealand and the Australian Restructuring Insolvency & Turnaround Association.

Read more about Hayden.


SEPTEMBER member of the month

Claire Pavey l HR Professional | WesTrac

Claire Pavey is a 23-year-old aspiring HR professional. After obtaining a Bachelor of Business in 2017 with a double major in Management and Human Resources, Claire started her career as an Agency Recruiter focusing on the IT space and later moving to the blue-collar sector. She has recently transitioned to an internal recruitment role with WesTrac and it has been an awesome adventure so far.

Claire has a passion for Human Resources and loves being able to utilise her knowledge of the markets and her ever-growing network to provide people with the opportunity to be successful in their dream career.

Read more about Clare.


AUGUST member of the month

Gabriella Sainsbury l Corporate & Commercial Lawyer | Sparke Helmore Lawyers

Gabriella is an experienced corporate and commercial lawyer at Sparke Helmore Lawyers. She contributes to a number of boards as a company director, including as Deputy Chair and Company Secretary of Newcastle University Sport—the organisation that manages University Sport at UoN and The Forum health and fitness centres.

Read more about Gabriella.


JULY member of the month

Dominic May l Founder & Managing Director | CoastXP

Dominic May is the Founder and Managing Director of CoastXP. CoastXP is Newcastle’s Newest Experience offering coastal sightseeing, whale watching, cruise and event-based tours along the Hunter Coast.

Dom is an Ocean Enthusiast whose passion for the marine environment led him to working in some Australia’s most scenic coastal locations including Heron Island, North Stradbroke Island, Coffs Harbour, Lord Howe Island, Port Stephens and Sydney.

Read more about Dom.


JUNE member of the month

Matthew Clements l Partner & CFO | Newcastle Financial Group

Matthew Clements is a Partner and Chief Financial Officer at the locally based financial advice business, Newcastle Financial Planning Group (NFPG). His role as CFO involves management of five businesses across financial planning and property while also enjoying time with clients as a Financial Adviser working largely with young families and young professionals.

Read more about Matthew.


MAY member of the month

Alex Wheeler l Associate | Sparkle Helmore Lawyers

Alex Wheeler is an Associate at national law firm Sparke Helmore Lawyers. He primarily practises in property and development law, acting for local and national clients as they work to redevelop and revitalise the Newcastle CBD, Honeysuckle and greater Newcastle region.

Read more about Alex.


APRIL member of the month

Bree Stedman l Female Head Talk Expert

For 13+ years, Bree has worked with women in a leadership, mentoring and personal transformation role. She has personally lived through and witnessed the struggle that women experience when it comes to creating a life of their dreams – regardless of skills and capabilities, the common denominator that affects results is the way women speak to themselves.

Read more about Bree.



MARCH member of the month

Jess Cole l Commercial Manager | DSI Underground

Jess completed a Bachelor of Commerce through Newcastle University and spent some time studying in Maastricht in the Netherlands. She graduated with Distinction in a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) with a Marketing Major. She has since completed a Graduate Certificate in Competitive Systems and Practices. In 2017, she was awarded Hunter Manufacturing Awards’ Rising Star.

Read more about Jess.


FEBRUARY member of the month

Krystal Rees l Human & Workplace Synergist | Being More Human

Krystal Rees started her profession in HR 10 years ago, working in generalist roles and developing a passion for workplace culture and leadership development. Last year she decided to branch out into HR Consulting to work at Being More Human so that she could apply her knowledge to a variety of businesses and help them grow.

Read more about Krystal.