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About us

Co-Exist Australia Ltd

Co-Exist Australia is a registered Australian Charity led by young people that holds conservation and education at its forefront.

Our organisation is governed by a highly dedicated and experienced board of directors. These individuals bring education, accounting, business and conservation backgrounds, to ensure the future of this organisation is healthy and stays focused on the vision.

Through all we do, our focus is conservation and all funds we generate will go directly back into conservation and education programs.

We are passionate about taking action on conservation issues whilst educating the public on learning to Coexist with Wildlife and Wild Places.

We are passionate about young people, the next generation who will lead this country and be making decisions around its future. We believe we need to re-inspire the next generation to get outside and to develop a passion for the great outdoors because after all it won’t be saved if people aren’t passionate about it.

Co-Exist will set up different projects and enterprises that all embody our vision. We will work tirelessly on conservation projects whilst also focusing on providing recreational experiences that get people outdoors. We believe this is the way to see change.

Kurt Jones Co-Exist Australia


To inspire future generations to coexist with Wildlife and Wild places,
cementing conservation as an integral part of their everyday lives.


To develop communities, projects and social enterprises that
empower the next generation to coexist with the environment.

Our Board and Leadership

Kurt Jones

Founder and Managing Director

This is a journey that has been years in the making; a vision I first had as a 12-year-old, to inspire future generations to coexist with wildlife and wild places.

Through this, my passion grew and I took every opportunity to be involved in conservation and wildlife. Throughout school I had the great opportunity to undertake work experience at Australia Zoo, I joined my local koala rescue group and joined the youth committee of an environmental film festival.

In all I have been involved in, I have become aware of the need to take action, but ultimately we need to take a step back and think about the way we are approaching conservation. It is my passion to engage young people, the next generation, the ones who will be leading our country. We need to ensure they are passionate about the outdoors and protecting its future.

Together, we have designed a model which is called “The REC Way”, a tool to engage people in recreation that will lead to education and ultimately a desire for conservation.

Our vision is to build an organisation with an impact, an organisation that will create change, to protect wild places and to see people inspired to make a difference.

It is my greatest honour to invite you on our journey, as we begin to see this movement take shape, to make a significant impact.


Eliot Sanger

Board Chair

• Master of Leadership and Management in Education (with Distinction)
• Graduate Certificate in Leading for Understanding
• Bachelor of Physical Education
• Diploma of Teaching

Eliot has over 30-years’ experience in the education sector, particularly
working in secondary schools. Eliot has a wealth of knowledge
and experience in outdoor & environmental education.

Eliot is currently working in education leadership, managing large independent schools.


David Mackenzie

David Mackenzie


• Director, Natural Habits Australia
• Treasurer, Queensland Koala Crusaders

With over 40 years of business experience, David is the definition of an entrepreneur. He has developed multiple successful businesses and has been in leadership and administration roles in large companies as well as small businesses.

David has spent most of his career in marketing, communications and administration in agribusiness as well as producing beef cattle. These days David part owns and directs a global telecommunications and communications firm.

Being a passionate Wildlife Advocate and photographer has led him to serving as board member and treasurer of a koala conservation organization.


Linda Barnes

Linda Barnes

Board Member

• President and Co-Founder, Natural Habits, LLC and Founder, Barnes Consulting Group
• President/Chair of Queensland Koala Crusaders
• Graduate, University of Michigan School of Nursing

Originally from the United States, Linda‘s background is in healthcare and later in business management. In a career spanning over 35 years, Linda has started and operated two successful consulting firms specialising in IT and communications.

Linda is a successful wildlife photographer and in 2020 she relocated to Australia to pursue her wildlife conservation passion and has now been appointed to the role of President of Queensland Koala Crusaders.


Genevieve Deaconos

Board Member

      • Master of Business – Marketing

      • Bachelor of Business – Marketing/PR

      • Bachelor of Creative Industries

      • QUT Social Enterprise Leadership Program

      • Certificate IV in Training and Assessment

    Genevieve brings more than twenty years’ experience in strategic marketing and business development to the Co-Exist Australia Board. She has deep expertise in sponsorship and stakeholder engagement spanning multiple industries, including the tertiary education, consulting, and not-for-profit sectors, with a proven track record of developing profitable, impact-driven partnerships and sponsorships.

    Genevieve currently works for the Australian Wildlife Conservancy delivering fundraising outcomes across Queensland.