Our Board

Chair: Cathy Humphrey 

Cathy Humphrey is CEO of Sacred Heart Mission, an organisation that works with people who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

Cathy Humphrey has been with the Mission for more than eleven years. During this time, she has overseen the operations of a number of different services in the capacity of General Manager, in areas including Aged Care, Sacred Heart Central, Women’s Services and the Rooming House Plus Project, in addition to taking on the CEO role in November 2011. 

Cathy has been working in the disability, community housing and homelessness sector since 1993, and since 1996 she has been working in areas more specifically focused on people experiencing homelessness, both in Government and in various not for profit organisations.



Deputy Chair: Lucy Adams

Lucy Adams is the Strategic Advocacy and Policy Manager in the Civil Justice program at Victoria Legal Aid. She is focussed on systemic advocacy and reform, informed by evidence from VLA’s work and the perspectives of clients, in the areas of economic and social rights, mental health and disability, equality and migration. 

Until 2018, Lucy was the manager and principal lawyer of Justice Connect Homeless Law, a specialist legal service for Victorians who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Her work with Homeless Law was focussed on preventing homelessness and reducing the negative impact of the law on people experiencing homelessness.

In 2013, Lucy undertook a Churchill Fellowship, travelling to nine international cities and speaking with 60 experts about homelessness and the regulation of public space. In 2016, she was the Law Institute of Victoria’s Community Lawyer of the Year.



Treasurer: Michael Deschepper

Michael is the Deputy Chief Executive Officer at Wintringham and its subsidiary Wintringham Housing Limited which has the mission of providing dignified, affordable, high-quality housing, accommodation, and support services to frail, elderly men and women who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

Michael is a chartered accountant with over 20 years’ experience in the corporate sector, both in Australia and overseas and now at Wintringham.



CHP Board of Directors

Jane Barnes, Salvation Army

Jane Barnes has worked with The Salvation Army since 1993 and is General Manager of the Adult Services Network in Melbourne.  Adult Services is an integrated network of support and related services including Homelessness, Mental Health, Alcohol and other Drugs, Justice, Disability and Aged Care.  Jane was a member of the Commonwealth Advisory Committee on Homelessness from 2000 – 2003, a member of the Victorian Ministerial Advisory Committee on Mental Health from 2005 – 2010, a member of the Victorian Ministerial Advisory Committee on Homelessness from 2011 – 2013 and is currently a member of the Ministerial Taskforce on Rough Sleeping.



Michael Horn 

Michael Horn is a Social Research Consultant based in Melbourne working primarily with innovative not-for-profits. Michael has over 28 years’ experience as a social researcher, policy analyst and project manager, following a successful early career as an aerospace materials engineer in the UK and Australia.

Michael was previously a Senior Manager in the Research and Policy Centre at the Brotherhood of St Laurence for 8 years, and led the research activities at Hanover Welfare Services for over 13 years.

Michael has undertaken a wide range of innovative research studies looking into family homelessness and its impact on children, women’s homelessness, problem gambling, suicidal ideation and, begging. He was also responsible for the development of the BSL-MI Social Exclusion Monitor. 

From 2010 to 2015 Michael was an Honorary Research Fellow in the School of Social & Political Sciences at the University of Melbourne. 



Jennifer Samms

Jenny Samms is a non-Executive Director on a number of Boards and undertakes consultancy work mainly in the NFP sector. She was previously the CEO of Aboriginal Housing Victoria. During her time as CEO she led the organisation to achieve Housing Association status and successfully negotiated the historic transfer of ownership of the nearly 1500 DHHS properties that AHV was managing.

She is also an Adjunct with the School of Political & Social Inquiry, Monash University, Member, Ministerial Family Violence Housing Assistance Implementation Taskforce, Deputy Chair, Monash University Indigenous Advisory Council, Director Foyer Foundation and a Fellow of the Institute of Public Affairs & Administration (Victorian Branch)

Jenny’s professional career has spanned 35 years in the Commonwealth and Victorian public services including Departments of Education, Labour, Aboriginal Affairs, Premier and Cabinet and Planning and Community Development. She has held a number of senior executive positions at Deputy Secretary and Executive Director level, focusing on developing and implementing improved social policy and educational and employment opportunities for all Victorians.



Jo Swift Kids Under Cover

Jo Swift joined Kids Under Cover 15 years ago, and in 2017 celebrates 10 years as CEO.
Under her leadership, Kids Under Cover has seen significant growth in personnel, revenue, and service delivery, as the organisation continues to fight to prevent young people from becoming homeless.



Council to Homeless Persons CEO

Jenny Smith

Jenny has had a long and distinguished career in the public sector and has well over 20 years of experience in leadership and management. She has worked in policy, management, government and in service delivery, and in health, mental health, and community health sectors.

Jenny joined the Council to Homeless Persons (CHP) in 2011, following her role as General Manager Medical Services at St Vincent’s in Fitzroy.

Jenny is passionate about applying her skills and experience to ending homelessness in Victoria and about working in partnership with those who have experienced homelessness, the specialist homelessness sector, government and the philanthropic and corporate communities.