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'Leading the way for private charitable foundations', Stacey Thomas

Welcome to Purposely with Stacey Thomas, a highly regarded philanthropy leader who is making a significant impact in the field of philanthropy.

Stacey is the CEO of one of Australia’s oldest private foundations which is embracing its past and its history at the same time ensuring it puts it resources to work for a more equitable future for the people it helps.

Stacey serves as a trustee for two philanthropy peak bodies, Philanthropy Australia and Community Foundations Australia, who have recently pledge their commitment to the Voice, a campaign to change the constitution of Australia to ensure a better future for First Nation people. She is also part-time CEO of a start-up community foundation, Foundation SA, that she is growing and scaling in addition to her other responsibilities.

Stacey's primary role is as CEO of The Wyatt Trust, a private charitable foundation established in1886 by Dr. William Wyatt. The Trust has a $100 million endowment and donates approximately $4 million each year to good causes across South Australia, with a focus on supporting South Australians in need in areas such as employment, education, housing, and financial literacy. Dr. Wyatt was a prominent figure in South Australia, involved in numerous social purpose activities, including serving as a justice of the peace, magistrate, surgeon, state coroner, and founder and board member of several private schools.

He was also on the board of many institutions that still exist today, including the Botanic Gardens, the History Society, State Library, Adelaide Hospital RSPCA, and the Adelaide Zoo.

Despite its unique history, The Wyatt Trust continues to use Dr. Wyatt's interests and beliefs in doing good around poverty and medicine to guide its grant-making. The Trust allows people experiencing financial hardship to determine what support they need most and works within the framework of what people need most at their time of need.

However, The Trust faces challenges in working within South Australia because it is a large state with a relatively small population. The main city, Adelaide, is on the southern boundary of the state, but there are also many regional and remote communities in the state.

Stacey's passion for social justice and community development has helped shape The Wyatt Trust's vision and strategy for improving the lives of vulnerable communities in South Australia.

Stacey grew up in Victoria and earned a degree in Social Work from the University of South Australia. Later, she pursued a master’s degree in Business Administration and began her career in the non-profit sector, working for various organizations focused on community development and poverty reduction. She also gained valuable experience in the private sector, working for companies in the finance and insurance industries.


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