Skip to main content


yLead is proud to partner with the following speakers for our 12 location roadshow across Australia. These young people are all role-models in their community, committed to driving change and making a difference in the world. We are excited to welcome them to the Altitude Day stage to inspire and empower your Year 9 students.

Find the speakers for your specific location below.


Krushnadevsinh Ravalji

Krushnadevsinh Ravalji empowers young people to embrace their evolving identities and build acceptance for others. Through his partnerships with schools, he champions diversity and inclusion to create a culture where every student feels valued and belongs.

He has collaborated with organisations such as UNICEF and the Australian National University to address systemic racism and institutional bias, and his advocacy for building resilience and promoting inclusion has made him a thought leader in the space.

Recognised through awards such as the Inaugural VicHealth Future ChangeMaker Award and named Wyndham City’s Young Person of the Year, Kano is a relatable and engaging speaker for today’s generation.

Kano will be speaking in: Brisbane, Canberra, Hobart, Melbourne, Rockhampton, Sunshine Coast, Sydney, Toowoomba, Townsville

Amity Fielding

Amity Fielding attended A.B. Paterson College from prep to grade 12 and is currently in my first year of her Bachelor of Entrepreneurial Transformation and Bachelor of Global Studies (Sustainability) at Bond University. 

For as long as she remembers, her greatest passion has been sharks and our oceans. Amity strives to create a world where humans and sharks can coexist and her passion project is working with ocean conservation organisations to see the modernisation of the Queensland and New South Wales Shark Control Programs. This inspired her to create a business through the Bond University Transformer Program. 

Amity is in the early stages of creating an education program to rewrite the narrative of sharks and educate about safety in our oceans. She plans to join the Australian Royal Navy in the next five years while building and launching her business. 

Amity will be speaking in: Gold Coast

Ben Hayden-Smith

Ben Hayden-Smith has worked extensively with financial service & accounting firms in practice management, business improvement, change management and marketing and growth strategies. Ben has also worked throughout Asia, including three years in Japan working as a consultant & trainer to companies like Kawasaki and Phillips. Ben is the founder of Kyoiku, a company providing education solutions to professional service firms and their clients.

Ben will be speaking in: Gold Coast

Caitlin Oschadleus

Caitlin Oschadleus recently completed a degree in International Relations and Global Studies at the University of Sydney, with an Honours thesis that examined human trafficking and its connection with conflict. Caitlin has completed an internship with the UK charity Humanitarian Aid Relief Trust (HART), focusing on educational initiatives for children in Sudan and Nigeria. She has just commenced a full-time role with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and will shortly be joining their Human Trafficking Research Team in Vienna.

Caitlin volunteers for Compassion, an organisation which empowers children in developing countries to go to school through a sponsorship program. She firmly believes that meaningful change in our world happens when individuals recognise the power they have to make positive change, and act on it together.

Caity will be speaking in: Canberra, Sydney

Claire Harris

Claire Harris is the co-founder of Hoedowns For Country Towns – a 46,000km bootscooting road trip around Australia in 2022, teaching line dancing in rural communities and raising money for rural charities. In 273 days on the road, the dancing duo ran 75 hoedowns across seven states, raised $38,250 for charity, and somehow didn’t get a single flat tyre. Prior to trip, Claire was an agricultural journalist for Stock Journal, South Australia’s rural weekly newspaper, and before that, she studied plant science at the University of Queensland. Hardly a logical career progression, it goes to show that if you back yourself and are willing to work hard, you can do anything.

Now based in Adelaide, Claire is a freelance journalist writing for a number of agricultural publications and rural businesses. She has also recently launched her own line dancing business, Footloose Fun, running regular classes in Adelaide and teaching at functions on request.

Claire will be speaking in: Adelaide

Curtis Rayment

Curtis Rayment is a passionate consent educator, a JCU Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery graduate, a current QCRU Heelers representative, past JCU Respect facilitator and has run workshops in schools and sporting organisations across Queensland since 2021. In 2023, the program reached over 5500 young adults and he was nominated as 2023 Young Australian of the Year. Born and raised on his family’s cattle property in Western Queensland, Curtis now lives in Toowoomba where he works at the Base Hospital Emergency Department. In his spare time, Curtis enjoys hanging out with friends and family, playing rugby for the Rangers, and riding his horses.

Curtis will be speaking in: Toowoomba

Darian Brooker

Darian Brooker is a foster care leaver, TEDx speaker, and the founder and CEO of We, Future Leaders – a youth-led education and mentoring organisation assisting students from pre-school to university to reach their full academic and personal potential. Motivated by her experiences, she envisioned a world where all students could be heard, valued and adequately supported, no matter their circumstances.

Darian now leads a team of 45 who work with students weekly on a 1:1 and small groups basis within her two learning centres, online, and within schools. We, Future Leaders has supported approximately 2,000 students across NSW to date and aims to positively impact 1-million Australian youth by 2040.

Darian will be speaking in: Sydney

Dylan Conway

Dylan Conway is a recently retired Army Captain and the founder of Brothers and Books, a charitable enterprise he created in 2020 after suffering a significant injury that left him bedridden and needing to escape. Through reading, Dylan found that he was able to harness the power of bibliotherapy and keep his mind active during his hardest times.

Dylan and the Brothers and Books team began donating books to local communities, which quickly turned into setting up community libraries to spread life-changing books to as many people as possible. Since then, Brothers and Books has set up community libraries all over Australia, and inspired people around the world to read more books when they are facing hardship. The charity is collectively growing the resilience, education, and emotional intelligence of thousands of people.

Dylan will be speaking in: Brisbane, Sunshine Coast

Elijah Delporte

Elijah Delporte’s dual interests in filmmaking and entrepreneurship converged when he launched a rewarding commercial videography business. Over the past five years, Elijah’s career has transitioned from hands-on content creation to strategic consulting. In his current role as a content consultant, he guides companies in crafting purpose-driven content strategies rather than creating the videos himself. 

Elijah now focuses predominantly on the streetwear fashion industry, where his unique blend of creative talent and business acumen continues to drive significant results for brands looking to enhance their market presence.

Elijah will be speaking in: Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast

Emily Briffa

Emily Briffa is a social entrepreneur who believes that business can and should play a part in tackling entrenched social disadvantage. When Emily moved to Hobart in 2014, she noticed Tasmania’s high level of unemployment and left her job as a chef to co-found Hamlet in 2016. Hamlet provides individualised training and wrap around support to people facing barriers to employment, with a focus on people living with disability. Over the last 8 years, Hamlet has provided over 43,000 hours of training to 735 people in the community.

Emily will be speaking in: Hobart

Fiona Sanford

Fiona Sanford took the reins as CEO of The Flourish Journey (previously Flourish Girl) in 2023, after being involved since 2018. Leading the organisation, she has helped impact the lives of over 20,000 girls in Victoria. Fiona has delivered workshops for various organisations including Rites of Passage Institute, Game Changers Australia, Sport & Life Training, Monash University extending her influence across Australia.

Fiona’s commitment to youth development has earned recognition, including being named a Semi-Finalist in the 2023 7 News Young Achiever Award First National Real Estate Leadership category. Through her leadership, Fiona aims to bridge the gap between young people and mental health, nurturing resilience and leadership skills in the next generation, inspiring young girls to flourish and reach their full potential.

Fiona will be speaking in: Melbourne

Grace Sholl

Grace Sholl combines her lived experience of mental illness and suicide with her psychology background to advocate for systematic and social change. She advocates for improved mental health support and access to support for young people, and for better policy to address youth suicide and self-harm. She is passionate about ensuring people with a lived experience of mental ill-health are treated as experts in their own experiences and have their voices listened to in education, research and policy.

Grace has previously advised headspace and Beyond Blue, and sits on several NGO, government, and university committees. She is currently completing a Master of Suicidology at Griffith University, focusing her dissertation research on how hospitals can better support people with a lived experience of suicide.

Grace will be speaking in: Brisbane, Gold Coast

Jack Anderson

At 23 years old, Jack Anderson is transforming Australia’s education system as we know it. As a Harvard Masters student and the co-founder of Elucidate Education, Jack has provided more than 100,000 students with equitable access to the textbooks, online content and educational videos they need to succeed in school over the last two years. To achieve this, he leads more than 55 volunteers across WA and Victoria and has led the publication of five Year 12 high school textbooks that support thousands of students.

Additionally, on a bi-annual basis, Jack runs rural donation trips to the most remote and marginalised parts of WA. In these trips, he donates hundreds of textbooks to socioeconomically disadvantaged students who struggle to afford basic schooling items.

Jack will be speaking in: Perth

Jacko Auld

It’s safe to say that Jackson has a very interesting story. Having been severely injured from a footballing incident during high school, Jacko’s life was flipped on its head. This was no hinderance to his drive, passion and determination. Overcoming his adversity, Jacko has gone on to change many lives by staying true to the incredible person that he is. Jackson attended SEQ ASLC in 2013 and spent 18 months working for yLead on our IMPACT team.

Jacko will be speaking in: Toowoomba

Joel Coughlan

Born in Mount Isa and growing up in Rockhampton in a family of nine (Mum, Dad and seven kids), Joel began playing table tennis at the age of eight. His passion for the sport grew from that moment and continued to flourish, winning his first state title at the age of 11. In June 2007, his whole world changed when half a tonne fell from a forklift and landed on his foot, landing him in hospital for 64 days straight. After 22 operations and numerous years of rehab, Joel was ready to get back into sport. He was now a minor amputee with numerous muscles removed from his right leg including loss of ankle function. He had never considered Para sport until he received a phone call from an old Queensland table tennis coach who was working as the National TT Para Program Manager.

Joel played his first international tournament for Australia in Amman, Jordan in 2009, then pursued a Paralympic Medal. While he narrowly missed out on selection for the 2012 and 2016 Paralympics Games, Joel realized his dream when selected for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, where he went on to claim a silver medal. He was selected as Captain of the Australian Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Table Tennis Team.

Joel will be speaking in: Rockhampton

Kate Kirwin

Kate Kirwin founded She Codes Australia in 2015, providing the networks, technical skills, and confidence for women to enter tech careers. Born in regional WA, Kate strongly believes in empowering women from some of Australia’s most remote regions. So far, more than 7,000 women from all over the country have learned to code through She Codes, with more than $2.5 million worth of scholarships awarded.

Kate has more than a decade of experience working in events, coming from a background of charity events, which she uses to craft impactful, powerful events and programs. Kate is a skilled community builder having successfully nurtured communities at Spacecubed and Plus Eight as well as She Codes. Her achievements have been recognised with the Business News 40 Under 40 Award and The West Australian’s Rising Star Award. She was recently named as WA’s 2024 Young Australian of the Year.

Kate will be speaking in: Perth

Lizzie van Dongen

Lizzie van Dongen is a musculoskeletal physiotherapist and pilates instructor living with Cystic Fibrosis (CF), a genetic disease primarily affecting the lungs and digestive system. Along with CF Australia, Liz  successfully campaigned to have a drug that treats the underlying cause of CF put on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Schedule Scheme (PBS). The petition gained 58,274 signatures and was presented to the Federal Parliament. The national campaign meant that 3,500 Australians living with CF can now enjoy a better quality of life. Liz is passionate about helping others live a life unencumbered by doubt, disease, illness or injury. She promotes the benefits of exercise, especially for people with CF, to maximise their lung function and sustainably manage their health and wellbeing. Liz advocates for us to be the change we want to see in the world, through whatever means are available to us.

Lizzie will be speaking in: Hobart

Maisara Muzaffar

Maisara Muzaffar’s migration from Bangladesh to Australia at the age of seven exposed her to the harsh realities of discrimination and racism. Instead of succumbing to these challenges, she found the inner strength to combat these injustices head-on. Motivated by her own experiences, Maisara became deeply involved in community initiatives such as providing aid to the disadvantaged, providing sanitary aid to low socio-economic schools, facilitating English conversation classes and working in projects to encourage youth engagement. Her determination to eradicate discrimination propelled her into various leadership roles, where she actively engaged with diverse communities.

In 2023, she was elected as the Youth Leader of the Opposition in Youth Parliament and was the youngest Cultural Ambassador for the City of Canning. She is a staunch advocate for social cohesion and intercultural understanding and works tirelessly to bridge gaps and foster unity. Maisara has received accolades and has been featured in many different media platforms for her work. She has been awarded the ADF Long Tan Youth Leadership & Teamwork Award in 2022, Youth Citizen of the Year by City of Gosnells in 2024 and the Youth Award at the WA Multicultural Awards in 2024.

Maisara will be speaking in: Perth

Mary-Clare Baker

Mary-Clare Baker is an artist, tutor and mindset mentor, helping youth for over 15 years. Finding positive outcomes for youth through creativity is her life’s mission! After the death of her son, three-year-old Lucas, Mary-Clare found herself with a mountain to climb. She turned to selling her artwork at the local markets enabling her to buy an apartment, a small car, and a business, where Mary-Clare helps young people cope through creativity.

Mary-Clare knows that slow progress is real progress. In 2025, she is due to complete a Bachelor of Psychological Sciences to further support her students. Armed with a 30-year love of art, seven certificates from Trinity College London for Speech and Drama, and the values of a Saint Patrick’s College graduate, Mary-Clare is poised to connect with young people, understand them, and provide real educational and emotional support as we walk into the future.

Mary-Clare will be speaking in: Townsville

Mikayla East

Mikaylah East, past yLead volunteer, fierce advocate for and believer of young people and founder of Imperative project Australia. Originally from Geelong, she joined the yLead world in 2018 at this very conference.

Mikaylah hopes to create a safe space for any survivors of sexual assault or violence as well as allies where they feel heard and understood. To spread awareness on imperative topics, like but not limited to, consent education and training, understanding your own voice and boundaries and understanding the voice and boundaries of others.

Mikaylah wants to get out there and facilitate sessions, to be in schools, face to face with young people and really reach them. To facilitate a safe and casual environment in which the topic of consent can be discussed openly.

Mikaylah will be speaking in: Melbourne

Nayth Woodrow

A profoundly impactful thinker and storyteller, possessing the capacity to engage, connect and influence, Nayth Woodrow founded Ryde out of a passion for growing something from nothing. Having grown Ryde International into a global community across seven business units, including his own personal brand, Nayth is now driven to share his learning and experience, along with his passion for purpose with the Ryde Community.

Overseeing seven discrete business units as the Founder and CEO of Ryde International, Nayth believes that the way you do one thing is the way you do everything, as he works with individuals, teams and organisations across the world to help people resist the notion that growing up has to mean growing old.

Nayth will be speaking in: Adelaide

Oliver Hovenden

Oliver Hovenden is an activist and human rights advocate who has spent much of his life campaigning for the rights of others. Through his involvement with Amnesty International, Youth Parliament and UN Youth, Oliver has campaigned on a number of human rights issues and empowered young people to advocate for the change they wish to see in the world. His work saw him awarded Hobart Young Citizen of the Year for 2022.

Oliver uses traditional political advocacy as well as creative writing and spoken word poetry as a means to bring about change. In 2022, shortly after moving to Canberra to pursue work in public policy, he was the victim of an assault that left him with a traumatic brain injury. His difficult journey to receive the support that he needed taught him about the importance of resilience and fighting for yourself as well as others.

Oliver will be speaking in: Canberra

Sarah Freeman

Sarah Freeman is a the founder and CEO of Kids Arthritis and South Australian Young Australian of the Year. At 18 months, after only walking for 8 weeks, Sarah went back shuffling and her parents knew something was wrong. After many GP appointments, scans, tests and tears figuring out why this was happening, she was diagnosed with juvenile arthritis. With nowhere to turn, Sarah’s parents were supported by their community.

Her pain, prolonged hospital stays and even near death experiences were life-shaping. At age 19, Sarah spoke up for all the children, families and carers like hers, founding Kids Arthritis for those experiencing juvenile arthritis. She has since changed countless lives in Australia and worldwide. Sarah is continuously recognised for her work through Australia-wide awards and media coverage.

Sarah will be speaking in: Adelaide

Shelby Rhodina

Shelby Rhodina was born and raised in Rockhampton, Australia, and always dreamed of becoming a published author. She started writing her first original series The Ebonwick Chronicles in high school, and at 20 years old self-published her first book The Velvet Mansion and the Discovery of Magic in 2021.

Shelby studied a Bachelor’s in Visual Art, and this year has completed the Master of Letters degree in creative writing to further her dream career. In January 2022, Shelby received the Australia Day Cultural Award in Rockhampton for her efforts writing, publishing, and distributing her book in Rockhampton and Yeppoon. At the end of 2022, Shelby published her second novel The Laundromat and the Four Elements, a sequel to her first novel. When she isn’t writing Shelby is making art, and her sculptures and drawings both inspire and influence her writing.

Shelby will be speaking in: Rockhampton

Tenason Stark

Tenason Stark proudly serves as an active army reservist and a qualified Justice of the Peace in Queensland. In 2024, he was named Townsville’s Young Citizen of the Year, recognising his efforts to positively impact society.

Currently, Tenason is pursuing a Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Arts at James Cook University, alongside a diploma in business. He was involved in winning the 2023 Co-labs road safety challenge, in which his team broadcast a road safety campaign across Queensland. He also serves as the 2024 young member for Thuringowa in the Queensland Youth Parliament and volunteers with Borderline Australia mental health charity.

Tenason will be speaking in: Townsville