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The Maple Street Co-op




9am - 5:30pm



9am - 4:30pm



9am - 4pm

About the Directors

The current Maple Street Co-op board was elected at the October 2022 AGM.

Chair: Elke Watson

Board members:  Kamala Alister, Adrian Anderson, John Ford, Patricia Lake, Eugenie Schwartz and Jonathan Waites


Kamala Alister
Kamala holds an Executive Masters in Business Administration USQ. She is trained in governance and facilitation (by Jill Jordan initially) and was part of the management and governance of the River School in Maleny since its founding.

She lives on a Maleny housing co-op and has organised a large number of meditation retreats and events over the past ten years. Kamala practices meditation, yoga and vegetarian diet. She is also a singer and founded the music distribution company, InnerSong.



Elke Watson is an experienced director with skills in Human Resource Management.  She is a successful business manager with several interests including 30 years in developing and managing a dairy business with her husband in Conondale.  She is a leader in the Dairy industry and has been recognised as an outstanding land manager manager of natural resources.  She has filled many roles volunteering for community organisations. Elke has a degree in business management a diploma in human resource management and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.  Elke’s focus with the Maple Street Coop is on people and how good culture and process makes for stable triple bottom line results.

Jonathan Waites

Jonathan relocated to Maleny 26 years ago seeking alternative education for their family and community living settling in the Frogs Hollow community (managed by the Manduka Co-op) soon after arriving. Jono has been a member of Maple St Co-op (and other community organisations) since his arrival and with Barung Landcare over 15 years as Project Officer covering a number of roles. Jono has been an active resident of Frogs Hollow since 1997 and for the last seven years fulfilled the role of treasurer.


John Ford

John has over 30 years business experience in financial services (member owned), retailing and childcare. His professional life has now evolved into a select number of director and consulting roles. He holds a Bachelor degree, Graduate Diploma in Business and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAICD). He is keen to contribute to the ongoing success of the Co-op by offering financial and risk management assistance to the Board.

Eugenie Schwartz
Eugenie holds a Business degree in Marketing and Communication from Paris and worked in an online advertising agency for 2 years. She then decided to come to Australia where she met her husband and having started a family moved to Maleny to find a community of like-minded people. She has run her own early childhood business for 11 years. She is an active member of the community having been involved with the Neighbourhood Centre, playgroup and as a parents’ rep at the River School.



Patricia Lake is Deputy Chair and joined the Board in 2019. She grew up in Canada, met a wonderful Australian and moved to Australia 26 years ago. 


She has worked in General Insurance for 22 years starting as a claims consultant and progressing through a variety of roles that included process design, strategy, governance and risk management. She is currently part of a Claims and Assessing Executive team as the General Manager for Strategic Risk Control. Her role is to assess current operations against regulatory obligations, customer value proposition and business outcomes.



Adrian Anderson

Adrian relocated to Maleny 25 years ago to raise a family. His experience includes running several businesses before training as a graphic designer at SCU in 2003. He co-founded Fig Creative and was creative director for over 150 businesses. Since then he has led a an IT development team, worked as a UX Designer for the startup and  has key ongoing clients in the indigenous and heritage sectors. He is occasionally invited to speak about design (Microsoft Australia). Adrian is also co-owner of The Treehouse Coworking Space and Shotgun Espresso in Maleny.

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