School Council

The Mentone Girls' Grammar School Council is a volunteer-based group of exceptional professionals and business leaders, many of whom are current and/or past parents of the School. The School Council plays an active role to ensure the School stays true to its Mission and strategic direction so it can prosper for future generations. This includes sound fiscal management and governance across all critical success factors as outlined in the School's Mission and Strategic Plan; maintaining an active building and infrastructure development program; and ensuring the School's performance meets educational and business standards as a market leader in girls' education.

School Council President: Jesco D'Alquen

Jesco is an executive with 17 years of practice in blue chip organisations, big three consulting and start-up ventures. He is currently the Managing Director of Tradeslot Pty Ltd, a company specialising in the design, build and operation of auctioning and trading platforms. His portfolio includes organisations such as; Energy Australia, General Motors, Deloitte, Accenture, the European Commission and the Human Rights Foundation.

Jesco is a regular speaker at conferences and has been published in BOSS Magazine, the Financial Review, PointCarbon, KyotoPlanet, the Federal Government’s White and Green Papers on the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme and others. He has also been a member of the Advisory Board of the Department of Climate Change, the Australian-German Chamber of Commerce and the Melbourne German Australian Society, among others.

Janelle Donnelly

Janelle is a current parent of the School and joined the Board of Directors of the Foundation in 2014. She brings a wealth of experience in strategy, governance and stakeholder engagement having worked for the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, consulting engineers and for the Port of Melbourne Corporation as General Manager Port Interface.

Janelle has a Bachelor of Arts (Urban Studies), a Graduate Diploma of Applied Science (Environmental Management), a Bachelor of Laws, a Master of Applied Law majoring in Maritime Law and a Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice. Janelle is currently Director Corporate Relations for an Australian defence technology company and launched a tech start up in 2016.

Ms Donnelly is the Chairman of Mentone Girls’ Grammar School Foundation Ltd and will be the Chairman of School Council from 2019. 

James Stewart

James has over 25 years’ experience in the private and public sectors. He is currently the co-owner of RixStewart; a specialist management consultancy providing commercial and Facilities Management (FM) advice on large public sector infrastructure projects. Prior to establishing RixStewart, James was an Assistant Director for the Department of Treasury and Finance in Victoria, where he led the team responsible for providing commercial, strategic and business case advice on all major capital and infrastructure projects.

James previously worked for the UK Department of Health as Stakeholder Manager for the two billion pound procurement and implementation of privately run Diagnostic and Treatment Centres. Prior to this he worked for Amey plc as Development Director on a number of healthcare pathfinder public-private partnership (PPP) projects and was also General Manager for the ISS Group, responsible for commissioning the FM services on the new Farnborough Hospital PPP in the UK. He also held a number of senior operational, business development and analytical roles at Spotless Services and also spent time as Monsanto Australia’s financial analyst.

Mr Stewart is the Chair of the Finance, Governance & Risk Management Committee and is the Acting Chair of the Building and Assets Committee and a member of the Nominations and Remuneration Comitteee.

Brad Cornwell

BE Ec GradDip Appl Fin & Inv, Dip.Bus(Gov) FICDA

Mr Cornwell is currently a corporate executive with the Commonwealth Bank. He has had extensive experience in relationship management, credit and risk management and leadership roles in the finance industry over the last 25 years. He was a representative on the Commonwealth Bank’s Ethnic and Cultural Diversity Committee for a number of years and continues his interests in developing diversity.

Mr Cornwell is a member of the Finance, Governance & Risk Management Committee.

Nicole O'Donnell

Ms O’Donnell is a well credentialed HR/Program Manager with proven ability to establish an organisational performance culture and effectively manage stakeholder expectations. Ms O’Donnell has significant international business experience and is currently a senior manager with the City of Melbourne.

Tara Chandler Scott

Ms Chandler Scott is Special Counsel at a Melbourne Law firm and specialises in major infrastructure projects, particularly in the context of project finance and PPP arrangements. She has extensive experience advising key industry players on construction and other key project documentation.

Ms Chandler-Scott has been involved in transport, energy and water projects and other major property developments in Australia, Europe, the Middle East and South America.

Ross Symons

Mr Symons is the CEO and founder of Big Ant Studios, the largest console game developer in Australia and is Vice President of the Game Developers Association of Australia. He has authorised books on the subject of Information Technology which is his core area of expertise.

Scott Phillips

Mr Phillips is a Chartered Accountant with over 28 years of experience. Mr Phillips has had exposure to a wide variety of clients across education, not‑for‑profit, manufacturing and government sectors.

Mr Phillips is a member of the Finance, Governance & Risk Management Committee.

Dr Heather Schnagl AM

Dr Schnagl is a former Principal of Ivanhoe Girls’ Grammar School and has a wealth of experience in independent schools and governance. Dr Schnagl was a Board Member of Independent Schools Victoria for 18 years, including 10 years as Deputy Chairman. Dr Schnagl is a Member of the Advisory Board to La Trobe University Business Faculty and the Examining Chaplain of the Melbourne Diocese of the Anglican Church.

Ashley Reed

Mr Reed has extensive experience in the areas of corporate governance, finance and accounting, and risk management.


We are always looking for talented, motivated individuals who will make a positive contribution to the School Council and the education of our remarkable young women. Find out more here.


Senior Management representatives on Council are:

Principal - Fran Reddan

Mrs Fran Reddan is the Principal of Mentone Girls' Grammar School where she has served the pursuit of excellence in education for 10 years. Specialising in the education of girls from Kindergarten to Year 12, the School has seen great advancement under Fran's leadership due to the innovation, entrepreneurship and vision to be 'a leading contemporary Australian school with an international outlook'. With her passion for girls’ education, Fran has propelled the School into the global arena with international partnerships, advanced the curriculum with a vigorous Science, Technology and Maths program,  pioneered a new approach to student wellbeing and helped students and staff achieve together through a culture of great expectations. Fran's extensive expertise in the education sector spans more than 25 years and includes a variety of leadership positions, serving on several Boards, and contributing her expertise in innovation, global learning, creativity, gender and leadership. Fran is recognised not only as an outstanding educator achieving excellent results, but also for her astute skills and understanding of the ‘business of a school’ with its complexity in stakeholder management. Fran is President of the Alliance of Girls' Schools Australasia, the peak advocacy group for girls’ education, and is a Director of the Centre for Strategic Education, which strives to lead educational thinking and practice through inter sectoral, interstate and international connections. Fran regularly mentors aspiring and practising leaders and is also listed in Who's Who for her contribution to education.

Senior Vice Principal - Kay McCullough

Business Manager - Brian Trumble