Samara Kitchener is a strategic communications specialist with a passion for health, technology and behaviour change. She has more than two decades experience in senior marketing, communications and engagement, working across government, food, defence and health sectors. Her deep expertise in integrated planning for significant campaigns and executing across multi-channel platforms has earned her multiple awards.
An advanced practitioner of the Social Ecological Model and adviser to the World Health Organisation on risk communication strategies for pregnant women, Samara has led multi-stakeholder communication strategies such as the Women in Sport Strategy; and the Royal Australian Air Force Plan Jericho Behaviour Change Strategy.
Her previous roles include Strategic Advisor Communications and Engagement with NSW Health leading preventive health campaigns on overweight and obesity, HIV, STIs and hepatitis. While Director Communications with the NSW Food Authority she led communication strategies, digital channels, crisis communications and education campaigns.
Samara is a past NSW President, Public Relations Institute of Australia, and is a guest lecturer at the University of NSW and University of Technology, Sydney. She also holds an MBA from the Australian Graduate School of Management (UNSW) and an Honours Degree in Food Science and Technology.
Samara’s awards include:
2017 Public Relations Institute Golden Target Award (NSW, Highly Commended): RAAF Plan Jericho
2016 Public Relations Institute Golden Target Award, Best National Campaign and Best Digital & Social - Primary IVF
2015 Public Relations Institute Golden Target Award: HIV Testing Week EASY Tour
2014 Public Relations Institute Golden Target Award: HIV Pop Up Testing
2014 CommsCon: HIV Pop Up Testing
2012 Public Relations Institute Golden Target Award: 8700 kilojoule campaign
2012 ADMA Effectiveness Award: 8700 kilojoule campaign
2012 Australian Mobile Awards: Two award winning apps (8700, Good Glen & the bad eggs)
2008 Public Relations Institute Golden Target Award: Mercury in fish & pregnant women
Leigh Goldberg is a vastly experienced and talented strategic communications professional with a passion for developing compelling communications strategies that drive engagement with internal and external audiences. A big picture thinker, Leigh seamlessly blends strategy, behavioural science and creativity together to move the dial for clients.
Leigh’s areas of expertise include strategy, communications planning, copywriting, branding & identity, stakeholder management, change management, facilitation, and PR. She has worked extensively across Government, Defence and the tech industry.
Leigh has a Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in Accounting and Marketing from University of NSW.
Leigh volunteers for a number of for-purpose organisations, using her communications skills to raise the awareness of various issues in our community.
Victoria Mackinlay is a passionate communications professional with extensive Australian and international experience. As Head of Strategic Partnerships for Google APAC, she led the team that helped the biggest websites in APAC boost their monetisation, growing revenue at over 80% Y/Y.
At Google EMEA she held roles in sales and marketing, helping clients such as Expedia and eBay with their online strategies. In 2008 she received the Guinness World Record for simultaneous Zorba dancing (along with 1,672 Googlers) at a conference in Rhodes.
As a storyteller, Victoria has written for Fairfax, NewsCorp and SBS. In 2020 she won the ‘State Library NSW Award for Emerging Children's Author' and has since published three titles with Scholastic and Harper Collins: ‘RIBBIT RABBIT ROBOT’, ‘THE BARK BOOK’ and ‘THE LION WHO CAME TO STAY. Victoria and her books have featured on the TODAY show, ABC Conversations and The Guardian.
Fluent in French and Italian, visitor of 51 countries and counting, Victoria is a direct descendant of King George III (the one who went mad!).
Director Strategy and Engagement
Director of Operations
Johnathon Ryan-Parker is a specialist in production, operations, experiences, marketing, and communications. He is passionate about taking wild ideas and making them a reality. Johnathon leads the House of Kitch production and project management team and thrives on collaborating to produce high-impact activations, creative assets, and video assets.
Johnathon brings broad experience to the team, having previously held roles including Marketing Experiences Manager (Australia and New Zealand) at ServiceNow, Events Partner (Group Marketing) at Macquarie University, Major Events & Projects Manager at the Public Relations Institute of Australia, and Events & Marketing Manager at the Australian Council for Educational Leaders.
Johnathon has over ten years’ experience in the technology, education and not-for-profit sectors and multiple qualifications in event management.
Outside of work, Johnathon enjoys cooking, entertaining, games of pool at his local and spending time with his rescue staffy named Cash.
MEGAN FOLEY Communications Director
Megan Foley is a highly skilled communications specialist and strategic thinker, with extensive experience across government. Megan has a passion for writing and giving a voice to people’s stories, she also loves working on creative communications solutions for clients.
Over the past two decades, Megan has worked on and delivered numerous communication strategies for government, as well as managing advertising campaigns for several agencies including the Australian Taxation Office and Department of Health and Aged Care.
Her writing skills were honed as a business and finance journalist, in the Canberra Press Gallery for The Age and the Australian Financial Review, then on business magazines at Fairfax in Sydney. Her “pinch-me” moments include working with the likes of Laura Tingle and Annabel Crabb.
Megan holds a Bachelor of Communication degree in journalism from the University of Canberra. She has travelled extensively, having lived and worked in the UK and Spain. Outside of her work at House of Kitch, Megan spends lots of time on sporting field sidelines watching her three sons. She also enjoys dining out with her husband, Pilates and 80s/90s alternative music.
Strategic Communications and Content Specialist
Madeleine Wood is our “Defence guru” and yet still she finds new acronyms to learn each day. She works closely with clients to help with their day-to-day needs and is always on hand to offer insights and solutions, her favourite part of the job. A media whiz as well, Madeleine has contacts in about every department and knows how to get the most out of a story.
Starting out with a taste of the higher education space, Madeleine moved to the Defence sector and found it is where she thrives. Don’t get her started on the importance of sovereign capability.
She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications and Public Relations as well as a Graduate Certificate in Social Media from the University of Canberra.
When not behind the screen Madeleine loves to get out and explore her city, more importantly find the best ramen in Canberra (still undecided). She also enjoys horseback riding and exercising
Strategic Communications and Content Specialist
Peter O’Rourke is a natural storyteller, passionate about creating change through the power of narrative.
He has more than a decade of experience in public relations, creative content creation, marketing, and event management across a variety of industries including government, not-for-profit, higher education, and the arts.
With a double degree in Journalism and International Studies from the University of Canberra, Peter began his career as a journalist in the Canberra Press Gallery, before moving into public relations. Working across a multitude of platforms from the written word through to audio-visual and overall campaign design, Peter creates impact by examining the underlying stories which shape our thinking.
Outside House of Kitch, Peter is an electronic music producer and co-runs his own record label.
Strategic Communications and Content Specialist
Alex Maclaurin has worked as a communications consultant for a diverse variety of clients over the past eight years, primarily in the higher education and research sectors. He specialises in science communication and storytelling – the art of transforming complex, arcane subjects into rich, engaging, and inspiring content. His work spans publications, articles, graphic design, video production, podcasting, speechwriting, and cross-platform creative.
Alex completed a double degree in communications and international studies, majoring in journalism and Asian languages. He brings a unique perspective to House of Kitch – one that finds extraordinary synergy within a team of moonshot creatives.
Science Communications Specialist & Writer
Camille Thomson is a science communicator who is keen to help everyone understand the exciting science that is happening all around us using engaging and fun events and content.
Over the past two decades she has worked with several not for profits including the Academy of Science and the Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering to help scientists, academics and researchers share their work through school visits, public talks, podcasts and online seminars.
Camille has a double degree in Science and Education from UNSW Sydney and a Master of Professional Communication from Western Sydney University. She also completed a Graduate Diploma in Radio and Podcasting with the Australian Film, Television and Radio School to expand her skills in audio communication channels.
Away from her work at House of Kitch, Camille loves getting out with her camera to capture unusual landscapes and visual perspectives as well as enjoying a bit of salsa dancing.