A message from Andrew Chittenden, Chair of the ARC Justice Board of Directors
At the end of 2021 we bid farewell to Chief Executive Officer, Hayley Mansfield, who has stepped down after more than five years at the helm of ARC Justice.
Hayley joined ARC Justice as CEO in October 2016 and led the organisation through a period of significant growth and capacity building. Some examples of the many program and service development highlights during Hayley’s tender include ongoing funding for our child protection legal service in Bendigo; the expansion of our place-based community legal services in Maryborough; roll-out of Specialist Family Violence Court services in Shepparton; and the establishment of several new integrated service partnerships with health and family violence services across the region.
Hayley led the development and delivery of ARC’s 2017-22 Strategic Plan, with a focus on expanding access to justice across Central and Northern Victoria. In 2017, ARC Justice and the community legal sector faced the prospect of federal funding cuts that would have seen 250 regional and rural Victorians turned away from legal support each year. Hayley led a successful local campaign and actively contributed to sector-wide advocacy, resulting in these funding cuts being overturned. Hayley has continued to be a strong and passionate advocate for funding to support place-based and integrated community legal services in regional Victoria. She has been a champion for community engagement, convening multiple successful Talking Justice forums, and ensuring that the voices and needs of regional Victorians – particularly Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities – are amplified in policy and law reform processes.
Behind the scenes, Hayley has overseen two office relocations to house a growing number of frontline staff. She has worked tirelessly with our Corporate Services team to strengthen outcome measurement and evaluation, financial management, risk, governance and compliance systems and processes. Over the last two years, Hayley has also led ARC’s response to COVID-19. The pandemic has presented significant challenges for community services, but as we enter 2022, ARC Justice is in a strong position for future growth.
Hayley’s contributions to ARC Justice and the communities that we serve have been vast and significant. The ARC Justice Board, on behalf of our staff, clients and partners, would like to thank Hayley and wish her all the best as she steps down to enjoy time with family and new pursuits.
Chief Operations Officer, Annika Kearton, will be Interim CEO while recruitment for the ongoing CEO position is underway.
Chairperson, ARC Justice