Coffs Harbour Support Services

Board of Directors

CHSS Board of Directors

Paul Bartholomew

Paul has worked in senior management positions for both the Federal and various State Governments and Territories. After leaving the public sector, Paul was appointed as Executive Director of Respite Care ACT, a community based organisation in Canberra that provided in-home support to people with a disability, frail aged people and people with mental health issues. Since moving to Coffs Harbour in 2007, Paul has established his own consultancy business specializing in disability services and aged care.


John Mandile

Originally from Melbourne, John has lived in Coffs Harbour for 29 years. He started his working life as a production engineer at Government Aircraft Factories working on the manufacture of guided weapons and aircraft. After this he became a small business owner and successfully operated several small businesses in Melbourne and Coffs Harbour. In 1995 he started CHESS a disability service which provides employment support for people with mental health issues. As General Manager he was able to initiate and obtain funding for several community development projects, such as the Bicycle Recycling Project, Mens Shed, Innovation Farm, PHaMs Programme, Community Garden and the CHESS Growers Market and Annual Art Exhibition. John has been President of the management committee of the Coffs Harbour Volunteers Inc. and a charter member of Coffs Harbour City Rotary. He has also delivered a paper to NSW Mental Health Conference on the Importance of Employment to the Rehabilitation and Recovery of People with Mental Illness.


Tracy Welsh

Tracy is married to Gary, and mother to 6 boys, eldest of which, is a client of CHSS. Tracy lives in and co-owns a successful business in the Nambucca Valley with her husband. Tracy also works as a Dance Teacher, Gym Instructor and has recently become a Personal Trainer. Tracy’s employment & volunteer work consistently reflect her community values. They include working with the ANZ Banking Group Ltd for 10 years, having held many positions including senior positions in Branch Management: Loans & Securities Officer, Accountant and a stint in the Bank’s Personnel Dept.

Tracy has been a member on several committees: Coffs Harbour Early Intervention, Nambucca District Early Intervention Steering Committee, Nambucca Heads Surf Lifesaving Club, Nambucca Heads Preschool Playcentre Ltd, Nambucca Heads Cricket Club Inc, Nambucca Bellingen Junior District Cricket Assoc. Inc and a Volunteer with Nambucca Heads Junior Rugby League Club.

Rod Cross

Rod is a business banker, with over 20 years experience in the financial services sector. He holds a degree in Business Management and Finance and has a passion for supporting the social and economic growth of regional communities. Rod has lived in the Coffs Harbour area for nine years and in that time has been involved as a volunteer and/or committee member with numerous local sporting, cultural and charitable groups.

Shalla Thomas

Shalla has a passion for working in the community services sector and has worked in the Aged Care and Disability Sector for over 27 years. In 1998 Shalla became part of the East Coast Accessibility Experts team and is dedicated in providing independent living solutions for those in the community who can benefit from the products and services provided by East Coast Accessibility Experts.
Shalla holds qualifications in Community Services, Frontline Management and Business Sales. She has been involved in Community Sector at National, State, Regional and local level.
Shalla currently sits on other local service boards and community theatre committee. Shalla is energetic in everything she does and loves to sing, dance and drum as well as her involvement in live theatre at a local level. Shalla can often be spotted on her early morning beach walks admiring the beautiful sunrise and capturing them with her trusty camera.

Neil Tucker

Neil has lived in Coffs Harbour for over 35 years. Neil has a love for the law, holding a law degree and after working in private practice for 10 years moved into teaching law for 25 years as a university lecturer and at TAFE. Neil is now retired but keeps himself very busy with community and charitable pursuits – Neil was the former trustee of the Upper Orara Recreation Ground. In his spare time Neil also loves to travel the world!

Find out more

To find out more about our services contact us on (02) 6650 5300 or via email on