Our Board

Meet The Essington School's Board Members

Chairman - Mr Nathan Reichstein

Nathan joined the Moore Stephens (formerly Hayes Knight) South Australian team in 2007 and has since been exposed to a diverse range of accounting and advisory disciplines. With his experience and unique skill set, Nathan moved to the Northern Territory in 2009 and is now the Director of Moore Stephens NT.  

Nathan prides himself on being more of an extension of his client’s businesses than your everyday accountant. He acts as a business coach to his clients to ensure the successful implementation of the strategies he devises.  Nathan and his wife Paula have three children at Essington. 

Nathan joined the School Board in May 2018 and was elected as Chairman in June 2018.

Deputy Chairman - Ms Michele Oliphant

Michele's career has focused on supporting and building wellbeing in schools. While working in the Department of Education she drove the development of a whole of system approach to social and emotional learning in NT schools. Michele is a member of both the Headspace National Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) and the NT Suicide Prevention Trial steering committees. Michele has a long volunteer association with the swimming community, including membership of the Board of Swimming NT.

Michele holds a Bachelor of Science (Psychology) from Flinders University and a Graduate Diploma of Primary Education from Charles Darwin University. A resident of Darwin for over 20 years, Michele has a long history as a parent at Essington. Her two sons commenced in 2007 and her daughter is a current student.

Deputy Chairman - Mr Ashley Perez

Ashley has over 20 years leadership experience working in the education and community services sectors, supporting children, young people, and their families in a variety of employed positions including roles in two independent schools in Western Australia. Ashley is currently a Chief Operating Officer at Somerville Community Services. Ashley has previously held appointments on the Board of Corpus Christi College in Western Australia, YMCA Perth, YMCA Australia, Youth Affairs Council of Victoria and NT Shelter. He is currently a member of the Board of YMCA of the Northern Territory.

As parents, Ashley and his wife Jemma feel there is a close alignment between their family and personal values and Essington and have an active interest in the education of their daughters, who are students in the Junior and Middle School.

Ashley holds a Combined Bachelor of Science/Bachelor of Commerce Degree from Edith Cowan University, a Master of Social Science (Policy and Human Services) from RMIT, a Graduate Certificate in Business from the Queensland University of Technology. Ashley is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAICD) and Fellow of the Institute of Managers and Leaders (FIML).

Ashley was elected to the Board in June 2020.

Non-Executive Director - Mr George Alexopoulos

George was appointed as a director on 30 January 2020.

George owns and manages a Concreting Business in Darwin that has been established since 1975. He also has a Development Business and has worked on several key projects in the Northern Territory. He has also been a strong supporter of The Essington School throughout the years, donating time and materials to various extensions to the school facilities. He has coached soccer for 10 years and has been a sponsor and supporter of children's sports.

Mr and Ms Alexopoulos have a child who is a alumnus of the School and another who is currently in Year 12. Their third child will also be starting Kindergarten in July 2020.

Non-Executive Director - Mr John McLaren

John McLaren has worked for the NT Government for over 40 years. He is an accountant, a Fellow of CPA Australia and a former NT Branch President. He has ongoing experience in property development and management. As a past Chairman of the Uniting Church Northern Synod Property Trust he was instrumental in the development of a major Darwin shopping complex.

John is a Past District Governor of Rotary International and is currently on the Board of Rotary Australia World Community Service Limited.

John is a Life Member of the Company and has previously served for 10 years on The Essington School Board, eight of which were as Chairman. He re-joined the Board on 29 October 2018.

Non-Executive Director - Mrs Vicki Bridge

Vicki Bridge joined the Essington board in April 2021.

Vicki holds a degree in International Business, with a minor in Marketing. She attended a university in Tokyo for this portion of her degree, on a Japanese Government scholarship.

Vicki has resided in the Northern Territory for over 17 years and has two boys with her husband Michael, who have both attended Essington since they were in Preschool.

Currently working for Golf NT, Vicki also dedicates time to supporting her local community as Secretary of the Port Darwin Soccer club and donating her free time to supporting junior soccer in the Northern Territory.

Non-Executive Director - Mr Peter Kennon

Peter Kennon has been a member of The Essington School board since June 2021.

Peter is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and also a director of a family company (Real Estate).

He is a father to 5 children, his younger two are senior college students at Essington. A proud Territorian, Peter was born in the Northern Territory along with his children and grandchildren.

Peter has been a police officer for 24 years and worked across the Northern Territory.  He is currently the Detective Superintendent leading the Crime Division, which is responsible for undertaking the most serious and complex criminal investigations. He is experienced in undertaking all types of criminal investigations, corruption and discipline investigations, emergency management and providing police leadership in remote communities.

Board Youth Representative - Ms Elizabeth Halikos

Lizzie joins the Board in May 2021 as the Youth Representative and an alumni of Essington School. Lizzie attended Essington from Preschool in 1995 to 2006 before leaving to attend Geelong Grammar School in Victoria. Her connection to Essington still remains close as her niece and nephews are students of the school. Following her completion of the International baccalaureate at Geelong Grammar School, Lizzie was awarded a collegiate scholarship to Bond University on the Gold Coast, where she completed a double degree in Arts and Law.

Since her time at Essington Lizzie participated in a number of volunteer programs in Southern Africa, Solomon Islands and across Australia. Upon completing a volunteer program in Southern Africa and her double degree in Arts and Law at Bond University on the Gold Coast, she moved back to Darwin in 2015. 

Lizzie worked in private practice as a legal practitioner specialising in commercial and estate law for several years before joining the family business, Halikos Group, as their in-house legal officer. Miss Halikos is currently board member for the Cancer Council NT.

Principal - Mr Brian Kennelly

Brian is the Principal of Essington. The Principal is not a director of the Company but is a non-voting member of the Board. He attends all meetings of the Board and its sub-committees.