Workshop Speakers


Simon Birkhead

General Manager
Homebuyers Centre

Simon grew up with construction in his blood. His dad owned and ran a steel fabrication company, so he had an early introduction to both building and business. His background stood him in good stead as he quickly moved up through the ranks of the ABN Group.

Joining Homebuyers Centre as a scheduler in 1996, Simon was soon promoted to Site Manager, before moving to Dale Alcock Home Improvements for three years as Construction Manager. In 2002, he was chosen to head up the construction department at the newly created Celebration Homes. Six years later, his mix of construction expertise and business acumen made him the ideal candidate to head up Celebration Homes as General Manager. In 2013, Simon transferred his skills across to Webb & Brown-Neaves, before taking up the reigns again at Celebration Homes in 2016.

In 2017, the wheel turned full circle and Simon returned to Homebuyers Centre as General Manager to once again head up one of Western Australia’s premier first home builders. Since 1991, Homebuyers Centre has helped more than 40,000 Western Australians into their first home.

Simon is currently on the board of trustees of WA Charity Direct. He has served on the Master Builders Council of Management (2006-2012) and is a past chair of the Master Builders Housing Council Committee (2008-2012).



Dr. Ron Cacioppe, B.S., M.B.A., PhD 

Mindfulness Presenter, Author and Coach          

Ron has been extensively involved in teaching mindfulness to individuals, leaders and teams to build positive, healthy people and successful organisations. Ron has conducted over 30 mindfulness programs and has coached over 200 managers in profit, government, education and not-for-profit companies in mindfulness and meditation techniques.

Ron helped start the Zen Group of Western Australia and has written three books and published many articles on mindfulness and meditation. His recent book, MindFlow, the Point of IT All, brings together mindfulness and flow in a unique way to provide a new generation of mindfulness-in-action concepts and practices. 

Ron was the University of Western Australian and Australian Institute of Management Professor of Leadership for 10 years and this year was the Visiting Professor at the Antioch University Graduate School of Leadership and Change.  He currently is a Director of Integral Development and the Integral Institute of Leadership, both organisations he founded.

Ron is an outstanding presenter who brings humour and insight based on many years of practicing, researching, and teaching meditation and mindfulness.

Dr Ron Cacioppe

Workshop Title: Mindfulness in Flow: the next generation of mindfulness research, teaching and leadership

Synopsis: This interactive workshop and presentation examines the integration of mindfulness-in-flow as a significant next step for mindfulness theory, research and practice. This workshop, and accompanying paper, describes the similarities and differences between mindfulness and flow and their relevance to research, teaching, and leadership in the workplace, education and health industry. Mindfulness-in-flow, ‘Mindflow’, incorporates characteristics of mindfulness and flow into a unique flow state.



Dr Kathryn Choules

Mind and Movement

Kathryn Choules (PhD) brings to her practice and teaching of mindfulness an enthusiasm which is the fruit of years of practice and research. Aware of the challenges of living mindfully and compassionately she communicates the process with understanding. Kathryn is a certified instructor of Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction through the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care and Society at the Medical School of the University of Massachusetts (CFM) and recognised as a Senior Teacher by the Meditation Association of Australia. Kathryn facilitates mindfulness and compassion programs and workshops at universities, schools, businesses, hospitals, health care settings, community organisations and through public courses.

Starting life as a lawyer means Kathryn is no stranger to the stresses of performing in high pressure environments. Completing a PhD in transformative education in 2005 led to a number of years working in lecturer and researcher at Deakin University, Murdoch University and others. Kathryn anticipates being a student of mindfulness up until her last breath.

For more information about Dr Kathryn Choules:

Dr Kathryn Choules

Workshop Title: Mindfulness: How our neuro-biology makes non-reactive presence such a challenge

Synopsis: Mindfulness is often described as “simple but not easy.” This workshop looks at neuro-biological reasons why mindfulness is not easy. During the practice of mindfulness we become aware of various obstacles to a sustained non-reactive awareness of the present moment. This workshop will explore four fundamental ways that our neuro-biology is hard-wired, inclining us to be distracted, self-focused, anxious and to run after the latest bling. The brain’s reward system, the negativity bias, self-referential thinking and the stress reaction will be unpacked in a way that helps participants bring greater understanding to their practice of mindfulness. These aspects of our neuro-biology manifest through the body, thoughts and emotions. Combining an intellectual understanding, with our awareness of the mind/body, we can intervene and engage in beneficial re-programming. This is a practical and interactive workshop that uses the science to support the cultivation of mindfulness.



Antonia Clissa

Executive Coach
Integral Development

Antonia is an Executive Coach and Clinical Mental Health practitioner whose interest in meditation began in the 70’s when it wasn’t very fashionable. She was introduced to mindfulness practices in her MBA programme and now enjoys sharing the benefits of mindfulness with her coaching and clinical clients mainly for stressed reduction.  Antonia has been teaching in mindfulness programmes for the past 10 years and has participated in the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction programme founded by Jon Rabat –Zinn. She is passionate about mindfulness as she has witnessed the transformative power it has had in her clients’ lives as well as her own. Antonia finds it a privilege to teach others how they can include mindfulness practices in their lives so that they may be the best version of themselves. She finds that maintaining regular meditative and mindfulness based practices herself is pivotal.

Michael Fox and Antonia Clissa

Workshop Title: Accelerating Mindfulness Practice by using HeartMath biofeedback apps

Synopsis: This workshop will outline what HeartMath’s research has discovered about the capacity of the heart to assist people to move into a state of flow and balance where their heart, mind, emotions and body are in sync. Participants will have the opportunity to experience how the emWave and Inner Balance apps work through providing feedback about their state of coherence. The session will include a review of the research into how effective the HeartMath apps and practices are in assisting the individual to accelerate their level of mindfulness.



Michael Fox

Senior Consultant & Coach
Integral Developmen

Michael is a registered psychologist, certified HeartMath coach, and a senior consultant at Integral Development. He has a long-held interest in areas such as spirituality, mindfulness, meditation and flow and has engaged in personal and group practices associated with these areas. He has facilitated courses in Mindfulness and Meditation for the Integral Leadership Institute programs and teaches managers and professional clients’ mindfulness and coherence practices in workshops and as part of his Executive Coaching work.

Michael has experience in Western and Eastern spirituality and has an interest in exploring the connection between science and areas such as mindfulness, meditation and flow. He has used HeartMath apps with clients to assist them to move into a state of flow and inner coherence with the confidence provided by the feedback they receive through these apps. Many find this experience helpful in establishing practices that enable them to be mindful and in flow in their daily lives.

Michael Fox and Antonia Clissa

Workshop Title: Accelerating Mindfulness Practice by using HeartMath biofeedback apps

Synopsis: This workshop will outline what HeartMath’s research has discovered about the capacity of the heart to assist people to move into a state of flow and balance where their heart, mind, emotions and body are in sync. Participants will have the opportunity to experience how the emWave and Inner Balance apps work through providing feedback about their state of coherence. The session will include a review of the research into how effective the HeartMath apps and practices are in assisting the individual to accelerate their level of mindfulness.



Helen Correia

Murdoch University

Helen Correia is an academic in the School of Psychology and Exercise Science at Murdoch University and a Clinical Psychologist specialising in cognitive-behavioural, mindfulness and compassion-based interventions. She works collaboratively with a broad range of colleagues across different disciplines and services to support mental health and well-being practices in university settings. This includes developing mindfulness and compassion curriculums for students across different disciplines, within different cultural contexts, in online and face-to-face learning environments, and supporting communities of practice amongst students and staff. Her current research interests are varied and include scholarly enquiry into mindfulness and compassion-based approaches in educational programs and clinical interventions, clinical training and supervision, and exploring the application of mindfulness and compassion in systemic frameworks.

Helen Correia

Title: Cultivating mindful and compassionate communities: A systems approach

Synopsis: There is an ever growing body of evidence to suggest the benefits of mindfulness and compassion based approaches for individual health and wellbeing. There is also an emerging area of practice and research extending mindfulness and compassion into communities, such as mindful schools and in organisations through mindful leadership. This workshop will explore systems approaches to cultivating mindfulness and compassion, paying particular attention to broadening our awareness of the systems we are part of, and bringing conscious intentions to our responses within these contexts. We will also identify personal opportunities for how we can each play a role in cultivating more mindful and compassionate communities and systems, through our own personal practice, through our interpersonal responses, through leveraging technology, and more.



Karen Haddon

Mindfulness Teacher, Coach and Workshop Facilitator

Karen Haddon is a Mindfulness Teacher with over 20 years of personal and professional practice in Mindfulness. She represents both Openground and Smiling Mind in W.A. two nationally recognised leaders in delivery of mindfulness based programs and is the founder of Mindful EASe.

Karen spends her days immersed in leading professional development workshops on mindfulness in schools, facilitating workplace mindfulness programs, speaking at conferences, leading mindful movement classes and teaching Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction for both adults and teens.

Her passion for staying up to date on the latest research and teaching methods in mindfulness has led Karen to qualify in delivery of:

Karen’s inspiration for this work comes from the depth of human flourishing she observes in the lives of those who are up to the challenge of establishing a long-term mindfulness practice.

You can find out more about Karen at:

Karen Haddon

Workshop Title: Mindfulness in Education – A National and International Context

Synopsis: With ever increasing demands placed on today’s educators and the epidemic of anxiety and mental health issues in our young people, the interest in mindfulness as a tool to help ease the burden of stress for educators and young people alike, has risen exponentially. Best practice models for mindfulness in a school setting are being explored in-depth in both the UK and USA and Australian based research into the benefits of a structured mindfulness program to support Teacher Wellbeing, was undertaken by the University of QLD in 2017. In this workshop, we’ll take a candid look at the current state of play of mindfulness in schools along with internationally recognised best practice models. You’ll provide tips on what to consider when determining the why and how of introducing mindfulness to your school and the importance of engaging credible and experienced mindfulness experts. There will be time to experience and unpack your reaction to some mindfulness practices, giving you an understanding of the power of developing a sustainable mindfulness practice.



Dr Sue Jackson, B.Ed. (Hons I), MSc, PhD

Psychologist, Author, & Researcher
Director of Body and Mind Flow

Sue is a sport & performance psychologist with a passion for flow – that optimal psychological state popularly known as being in the zone. Sue started researching the flow concept in the late 1980’s, and since this time, her academic and applied work has helped to make the flow state understandable and accessible to all levels of participants. Sue is a registered psychologist and fellow of the College of Sport and Exercise Psychology in the Australian Psychological Society (APS). Sue has written extensively on flow, including with her mentor & founder of flow, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Flow in Sports: The Keys to Optimal Experiences and Performances.

Sue has an Hons, MSc, & PhD in the fields of sport psychology and education. In addition to her academic training, Sue is a lifelong learner in mindfulness, and integrates into her professional practice mindfulness approaches from both western psychological approaches and eastern spiritual traditions. Sue is a qualified yoga teacher, has completed the Level 2 iRest Yoga Nidra training, as well as several courses in Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT), and Mind with Heart’s mindfulness & compassion facilitator training.

Sue brings a wide-angle perspective to psychological aspects of elite performance, through her own unabating love of sport & movement, a strong academic background, parenting an elite athlete, and many years of working with individuals and groups interested in enhancing both performance and experience.

 You can find out more about Sue at

Dr Sue Jackson

Workshop Title: Stepping Into Flow

Synopsis: In this workshop, Dr Sue Jackson will discuss how understanding the optimal psychological state known as flow can provide a pathway to optimal experience in the present moment. The parallels between flow state and mindfulness states will be explored, and the benefits of cultivating a present-moment awareness will be discussed.



Johanne Klap

PHD Canditate at Murdoch University

Johanne is currently researching the impact of Mindfulness on School Principals’ leadership and wellbeing as part of her PhD at Murdoch University. Jo is also a well-respected excutive leadership coach, professional development facilitator and an accredited senior trainer with the Potential Project (PP).  PP’s mindfulness programs are specifically designed to meet the needs of today’s ‘always-on’, complex, and dynamic work environments, and enhance the mental capacity and clarity of leaders and employees of organisations. Currently she is working with the West Australian Education Department delivering Mindful Leaders programs both face to face and online (for regional school leaders).

Previously she has been a Marketing and Public Relations Manager, has teaching experience in both Australia and the UK, and is an award-winning University Lecturer.  Jo’s passion has always been on working from people’s own deep wisdom and assisting them to realise the potential in themselves and others.

Johanne Klap

Workshop Title: Leading with Calmness, Focus and Clarity

Synopsis: For the past year the West Australian Education Department has offered a Mindful Leadership Program, through the Leadership Institute. To date approximately 300 Western Australian school leaders have discovered how mindfulness can enhance their wellbeing and leadership. Some of their stories, and the preliminary findings from a Murdoch University doctorial research project undertaken with 30 Perth school principals will also be shared. The research includes pre, post and 6 months post findings utilizing wellbeing and leadership measures, interviews and journal entries.



Dr Nicholas Martin

Emergency Physician and Deputy Director of Post Graduate Medical Education at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital

Dr Nicholas Martin is an Emergency Physician and Deputy Director of Post Graduate Medical Education at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital.  He has an interest in Junior Doctor Welfare and Education.  Through his own practice he has come to understand the transformative benefits of mindfulness and is now running mindfulness courses for junior doctors.  He has undertaken mindfulness facilitator training through the Institute of Health Leadership under Prof Craig Hassed.



David Michie

International best-selling author

David Michie is the internationally best-selling author of The Dalai Lama’s Cat series of novels, as well as non-fiction titles including Why Mindfulness is Better than Chocolate, Hurry Up and Meditate, Buddhism for Busy People and, most recently, Buddhism for Pet Lovers. His books are available in 26 languages in over 40 different countries.

David is a keynote speaker, corporate trainer and coach on mindfulness and meditation.  He has extensive experience presenting to a wide variety of different audiences around the world.

In 2015 he established Mindful Safaris, leading groups to Africa - where he was born and brought up – encouraging people to visit unexplored places, outer and inner, through a combination of daily game viewing trips and mindfulness sessions. 

David’s blog on mindfulness and related subjects at attracts a global audience of thousands of visitors each week.

David welcomes reader contact at:


David Michie

Workshop Title: Experiencing the true nature of our consciousness

Synopsis: David will will outline why meditation is the only way in which we can experience the nature of our own consciousness directly for ourselves. He will guide participants through several meditations, to enable at least a glimpse of the boundless tranquility which is the true nature of our own primordial consciousness.



Kasia Orlowska-Meinen 

Mindfulness and Emotional Intelligence Coach and Facilitator  

Kasia first came across meditation while living and working in London and appreciated its benefits for effective decision making and increased self awareness and self regulation. Back in Perth she engaged in organising Integral Leadership Institute’s mindfulness and meditation courses and extended her knowledge of the advantages of the regular practice for personal and professional growth.

She has since incorporated mindfulness in her executive coaching and leadership training programs and in 2015 was featured in ABC TV's Australia Wide story on the benefits of teaching mindfulness and meditation in a corporate environment.

Kasia utilises concepts of mindfulness and self-awareness in the design and delivery of her programs focused on achieving individual and team high performance, leadership skills development and employee engagement.

In her most recent work, Kasia works with women helping them develop solid self-esteem and confidence utilising mindfulness. She has also developed and facilitates an online program called Mindfulness and Emotional Fitness.

You can find out more about Kasia’s work:


Kasia Orlowska-Meinen

Workshop Title: Mindful Communication

Synopsis: Find out why you should endeavour to truly understand others and how to be understood by them. The purpose of communication is to truly understand and connect with others just as much as it is to be understood. Instead of learning about different personality types and communication styles we need to appreciate that all human beings want to be recognised and respected – be seen and heard. The most effective means to communicate is to be present. And not just present to understand and respond appropriately, but be present with own thoughts, emotions and ideas so that instead of reacting, we can respond appropriately.

Join this session and

- Experience relevant mindful practices and select the best one for you

- Be presented with the three-step process how to communicate mindfully

- Learn specific strategies on how to improve the way you communicate

- Implement the best strategies to build trust, rapport and connection with stakeholders fast



Dr Kevin Yuen    

Palliative Care Department
Royal Perth Bentley Group

Kevin originally graduated from UWA in 1979. Junior doctor terms included haematology/oncology and rural (Kalgoorlie, Wyndham) attachments. He eventually became a GP in a practice where he also learnt how to give acupuncture and utilize meditation as a therapeutic modality. He was one of the doctors that assisted in the early days of setting up the Silver Chain Hospice Care Service.  He went on to become its Medical Director and the Medical Director of the Cancer Council’s Cottage Hospice. He was also appointed as the WA State Medical of DonateLife, the organ and tissue donation agency.

Currently he is Head of the Department of Palliative Care at Royal Perth Hospital and also works as a consultant for the Metropolitan Palliative Care Consultancy Service. He loves singing, swimming, walking and playing sport.

Kevin Yuen

Workshop Title: My ‘It’ response plan…what’s yours?

Synopsis: In the work place or at home there are regularly things that happen that can disturb our equilibrium. It might be a minor disturbance ‘lost my keys’ or something a little more unsettling ‘lost my job’, ‘lost my wife’. When ‘it’ happens are there mindful strategies that you might use to survive the event? In the clinical setting at a busy tertiary hospital our palliative care team is often confronted with tragic, ‘not fixable’ situations. Whether they be an individual’s natural catastrophe of an incurable illness or the family’s despair or anger in response to their loved one’s predicament. How can we compassionately, consistently respond? In this workshop I’ll share some of my strategies and allow you to share your tips on how you deal with ‘it’.