PRINCIPAL: Vanessa J Hawkins (Ness) is a project and ideas developer, a motivational speaker, a mentor, lecturer, coach, author, sales training specialist, business consultant, event organiser, creative marketing strategist and problem solver.
Over the last twenty years she has developed a number of concepts, events and projects; worked with a wide range of groups and individuals including students; international organizations; large corporations; business owners and leaders; overcome adversity and realised her own personal dreams.

Vanessa has been a breeder of Olympic equestrian horses for more than thirty years. Her Equine Sports Breeding (ESB) program is internationally recognised as one of the largest and most successful in Australia, consistently producing elite eventers including the sire of silver medallist at Beijing Olympic Games, Irish Jester.
She qualified as a Registered Nurse and then studied Horse Management for two years full time at Glenormiston Agricultural College; has covered international events as a journalist; wrote the theoretical material for the first Diploma in Equine Myofunctional Therapy (EMT) course and was the senior lecturer for the National College of Traditional Medicine EMT course from 1993 to 1997.


In 1994, she became a Director and then Honorary Secretary of the Australian Horse Industry Council, Vanessa was actively involved in many initiatives including a five-year strategic plan whilst Andrew Peacock was in the chair.

She also played an integral role in many economic studies conducted by KPMG on the horse industry. Vanessa was the industry representative on the Rural Training Council of Australia (RTCA); was involved in Protect Australian Livestock Week in 2011 and managing the threat of disease outbreak when ‘Foot and Mouth’ became a risk to Australia; she initiated a Road Safety Campaign with VicRoads and successfully developed the first database of the Australian Horse Industry and then self-published and distributed the “A-Z Horse Industry Directory”.

In 1997, Vanessa was asked to develop the first EQUITANA Asia Pacific in 1999 and was appointed Event Director. EQUITANA has been held in Germany since 1968 and attracts over 300,000 people. EQUITANA Asia Pacific was officially launched by the Premier, Jeff Kennett. The event had a $2 million budget and was held in the Melbourne Exhibition & Convention Centre, attracting over 75,000 people and winning several Tourism Awards.

Her focus changed dramatically when her partner was diagnosed with bi polar and when this relationship fell apart after a seven-year battle, Vanessa became a consultant for Bartercard from 2003-2007. The company is the world’s largest trade exchange and services over 35,000 business owners in 8 different countries.

The integration of Bartercard into one’s business can be extremely powerful, assisting businesses with a marketing tool as well as a financial tool. Vanessa achieved international status in her first year and went on to become number one salesperson in the world. She has also smashed the company’s world records, twice. She was the National Sales Manager for Bartercard UK in 2008.


Back home, Vanessa became the President of a local community group, developing their strategic plan; running several events and Australia Day awards; was the Editor of the local paper and their representative on the Country Newspapers Association of Victoria (CNAV).

Vanessa has designed her own education programs and  launched a specialised consultancy service, PeeP Downunder to support others in their passion and journey. She offers her skills and experience to assist other business owners with some unique ideas and solutions to leverage their current operation and marketing strategies.

Vanessa is well known for her extreme levels of survival and creativity. Her mission is to share this with others and help them to think outside the square, to develop the confidence to be creative and the courage to initiate positive change to improve their life and their business.

PeeP Downunder ABN 35 700 882 571 www.peepdownunder.com

Vanessa is also available as a lecturer as Mrs Ed (horse specific content - visit www.esbeducation.com) and as a public speaker as The Ness Factor (motivational and entertaining).



Jaki is a qualified organisational coach and HR professional with both public and private sector management and leadership experience in Australia and the UK. A former practicing commercial solicitor, law lecturer and company director, Jaki has worked with several Federal government agencies and been involved in executive coaching, business planning facilitation, organisational development, strategic planning, HR policy development and change management. “We compliment each other as a team and can work with individuals and groups on career planning, working more effectively and how to navigate through workplace challenges and opportunities.

Jaki also has over 10 years’ experience working in human resources with, and for, the Australian Public Service (APS). Jaki has held senior management roles in leading APS agencies where she has been responsible for a range of HR function including SES and Executive Level leadership development programs, performance and conduct, Strategic HR Policy, capability frameworks and general learning and development.

Jaki is a skilled and versatile trainer and facilitator with a sound understanding of contemporary adult learning styles.  She has developed a range of learning and development modules for government clients, including strategic thinking for advanced writing, business writing (introductory, intermediate and advanced levels), an online (e-Learn) writing module, mentoring, effective delegation, managing inclusively, having performance management conversations, team building and knowledge management.

Industry expertise, experience and areas of specialisation

Jaki has worked across a number of Federal government agencies in a range of HR roles at the Executive Level 2 and acting SES Band 1 levels.  This has included the Australian Government Solicitor, the Attorney-General’s Department and the Department of Education and Workplace Relations (DEEWR).

As a management consultant she has been involved in executive coaching, business planning facilitation, organisational development, strategic planning, HR policy development and change management. Clients have included the Treasury, the National Library of Australia, the University of New South Wales at ADFA, National Health and Medical Research, the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation, CrimTrac, Victoria Police, the Clean Energy Regulator, the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS), the National Health & Medical Research Council (NHMRC), and the Australian Sports Commission.

In her coaching practice, Jaki works with individuals and teams on career planning, working more effectively and how to navigate through change other workplace challenges and opportunities.

Qualifications, Accreditations and Certifications
Jaki is a former practicing commercial lawyer and holds the following qualifications and accreditations:
               Bachelor of Social Science and Economics  
               Common Professional Examination and Law Society Finals 
               Graduate Certificate in Organisational Coaching 
               Certificate IV in Assessment and Workplace Training
               Accredited in HBDI Thinking Styles
               Accredited in Belbin Team Profiles
               Accredited in DiSC
               Fellow of the Institute of Leaders and Managers 
               Member of the Institute for Learning Professionals (ILP)
               Member of the International Coaching Federation (ICF)

David is the Managing Director of SOCOM, who are crisis and issue management specialists. With 30 years experience in the PR profession, community engagement and government relations, he has won numerous awards and has written books and manuals, and developed a world class simulation and crisis leadership training program.