The Podmore Foundation was incorporated in 2008 by a group of Duntroon graduates in gratitude for the opportunities they received for a good education in good company. Podmore now involves a diverse group of Australians who want to create educational opportunities for others.
Note: (The Podmore Foundation Inc is incorporated in the Australian Capital Territory (ABN: 312 5006 8413. Association Number A04663) and its Constitution was framed in accordance with the ACT legislative guidelines. It is a not-for-profit organisation with Deductible Gift Recipient status.)
Podmore Foundation Board and Biographies
The Foundation’s activities are handled by a Board of Management consisting of a President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer and three Ordinary Members. The 2017 Board is:
President: Peter Daniel, General Manager, Government Business, GRA
Peter Daniel served in the Australian Regular Army for thirty-five years, attaining the rank of Brigadier. He has seen active service on several deployments and has been recognised in the Australian honours as a member of the Order of Australia and for conspicuous service in the field of personnel and logistics administration. Since transitioning from the Army Peter has been heavily involved in promoting cultural awareness and ethical behaviour in the work place and has spoken frequently at business forums on these topics. As the President of the Podmore Foundation Peter feels that there is a genuine opportunity to assist in changing individual lives for the better. The challenges that we all face should be opportunities and the Podmore Foundation actively assists individuals to realise these opportunities. Peter is honoured to be able to assist in assisting with ‘Returning Rpportunity.’
Vice-President: Currently Vacant
Treasurer: Lachlan Harris and Michael Tran, Consultants, Financial Management, KPMG Canberra
Lachie is a recent graduate who is currently working at KPMG within the financial management service line. As someone who holds an indigenous background, Lachie strongly believes in attempting to bridge the inequality gap in local indigenous communities. As he have recently completed a tertiary education package, I see the opportunities that academia can provide. Lachie is a passionate member of the Podmore Foundation and is am privileged to be able to utilise the skillsets which I have learned to assist in giving local indigenous students the same opportunities I was provided in life.
Michael is a recent graduate who is currently wishing to apply my financial skillsets to assist his local community. Throughout his life he has been privileged to receive high quality education and opportunities to develop both professionally and academically. Consequently, he has witnessed the benefits a solid educational foundation can provide individuals and believes everyone should have the right to these prospects. Michael wishes to assist the younger generation in our community receive the same opportunities he had and bridge the gap in education inequality.
Secretary: David Retter, Associate Director, Technology Advisory, KPMG Canberra
David has been supporting the Podmore Foundation as the Secretary since 2013 through his work at KPMG Canberra. David is responsible for the coordination of the Podmore Foundation Board, and for maintaining the Podmore Foundation’s website. David is part of KPMG’s Defence and National Security sector and supports the Department of Defence in large-scale transformation ICT Programs.
Ordinary Member (Director, Development): Associate Professor Bob Breen, Director, Deakin University, Post-Graduate Courses Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies
Bob Breen, who graduated from Duntroon in 1973 after receiving a Duntroon entry scholarship in 1970, was one of the founding directors of the Podmore Foundation in 2007. After three years serving as Vice President, he served as President from 2010 until 2015 before taking up his present position as Director, Development in 2016 where he facilitated a new Indigenous scholarship program at Canberra Grammar School and a Memorandum of Understanding with the Duntroon Society for closer collaboration. Bob is a published Australian military historian and is currently employed as Associate Professor in Strategic Studies at Deakin University and Director of the University’s Higher Education Professional Practice Qualifications.
Ordinary Member: Julie Gilfillan, Farm Manager, Araluen Valley
Biography coming soon
Ordinary Member (Director, Communications): Currently Vacant
Public Officer: Les Bienkiewicz
Les was a member of the original group of Duntroon graduates that set up the Foundation in 2008, and was its first Secretary. Les served in the Australian Army for over 21 years and after resigning in 1992 as a Lieutenant Colonel had a successful career in the Australian Public Service, culminating in his appointment as Council Secretary of the National Health and Medical Research Council.
After retiring from full time work in 2008, Les became the Executive Director of the Defence Force Welfare Association where he now continues working in a number of volunteer executive positions. Although retired, he remains active in supporting the Foundation as its Public Officer and enjoys travel, bike riding and volunteer work for the Red Cross.
All Board Members and those seconded to the Committee are volunteers and receive no payment for their services less reimbursement of any approved incidental expenses from the Foundation’s General Account.
The Podmore Foundation Board ensures that Podmore is governed in accordance with its Constitution. The most recent version of our Constitution can be found at the following link: The Podmore Foundation – Constitution – 2014
Our implementing partner is Yalari. Podmore and Yalari work together to select children with talent, determination and leadership potential and fund scholarships to attend Australia’s finest and best regarded boarding schools, including the Canberra-based Canberra Girls Grammar School and Canberra Grammar School, and the Sydney-based Abbotsleigh School for Girls and Scots College. Throughout their secondary education, Podmore and Yalari provide mentoring and pastoral support to scholarship recipients in the spirit of Returning Opportunity.
To make this possible, we also receive generous financial and pastoral support from the ADFA Graduates Association, KPMG Canberra, Canberra Girls Grammar School, the Australian Defence Force Academy and the Duntroon Society. We grow our support base with the help of the Duntroon Society. KPMG Canberra’s support for Podmore is a key part of its Reconciliation Action Plan.
Prominent Supporters and Benefactors
Our Patrons include His Excellency General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC (Retd), Professor Mick Dodson, Major General Roger Powell and Waverley Stanley, the founding Director of Yalari.
Our major benefactors include the Stokes/Gilfillan family, John Hands, Tess Roche, Glenn Crosland, Mary Porter AM MLA, Mike Hyde, Jeff Wilkinson, Gary Stone, Neil Churches, Les Bienkewicz and Richard Healy.