Scholar Profile - Ryan Kiddle PDF Print E-mail
Ryan Kiddle


Senior Manager – Social & Community Groups at The Disability Trust

Awarded a McKinsey Academy Scholarship for the Young Leaders Forum Scholarship, 2019

What sort of work does your organisation do?

The Disability Trust is committed to providing highly professional care and support to people with disabilities and their families. As a registered National Disability Insurance Scheme provider, we offer a wide scope of supports that are person centred and meet individual needs.

Describe a typical day's work.

I am based at our Head Office in Wollongong where I am part of an amazing group of Senior Managers who’s day to day focus is about ensure we are offering quality services to the participants who choose to access our services, whilst supporting regional growth of services, systems development and operations through strategic planning. I support our Day Options and Sport & Recreation teams who provide services to close to 600 participants across our Illawarra and Shoalhaven regions, with a bit of reach into other areas where we operate these programs also. I have a keen interest in innovation and have played a key role in the development of one of our social enterprise services Trusted Travel, providing supported domestic and international holidays for people with a disability.

What were some of the key learnings from the course?

A big take away for me was the importance of self care and reflection in leadership, and the practical strategies that one can put into practice to look after yourself both mentally and physically. I also have been particularly interested in the role of psychological safety in the workplace, and how this is a key enabler of high performing teams.

How has it impacted / changed / benefited your role and your organisation as a whole?

Our organisation works in a very dynamic and complex environment. This constant change requires strong leadership and a willingness to adapt and constantly transform the business for best practice. My experience in the program has assisted me in my role in supporting others to become resilient in a changing environment. I also enjoy identifying potential "stars" who are working in a Team Leader or a middle management role, and I enjoy providing opportunities to help them grow personally and professionally within our organisation.

How did you come to be working in the not-for-profit sector?

If you had asked me 16 years ago when starting my professional life would I be working in the future in a senior management role in the community not-for-profit sector, my answer would have been no. I’d had little exposure to the sector and little knowledge of the role it plays. Studying at the University of Wollongong in 2004, an opportunity for casual work became available at The Disability Trust. Albeit in a number of roles as the years have passed, I am still here today.

What do you feel is most needed to sustain and build the impact of the not-for-profit sector?

Ongoing investment to build capacity and enable resilience in a changing and competitive world. Also allowing the opportunity for the sector to access the best education and training possible, building resourcing through the development of leaders in the sector.

What is something interesting / unique / unusual about you?

I’m a sports fanatic – a huge (or tragic) fan of the Cronulla Sharks, Port Adelaide Power, Illawarra Hawks, Hobart Hurricanes, ACT Brumbies (just to name a few…). I’ll play or attempt to play or watch any sport, live or on the TV. The best sporting event I have ever been to would be the World Championship of Darts, at the Alexandra Palace in London. By far the best live sport atmosphere I’ve ever experienced!

Click here to read about other ASF scholars.

"My experience in the program has assisted me in my role in supporting others to become resilient in a changing environment."


Ryan is Senior Manager at The Disability Trust, with more than 15 years experience in the not-for-profit disability sector. He studied at the University of Wollongong, and now looks after the Illawarra and Shoalhaven regions of The Disability Trust in Wollongong. He is passionate about innovative ways to support social inclusion.

In 2019, Ryan was awarded the Young Leaders Forum Scholarship at the Mckinsey Academy.

ABOUT The Disability Trust:

Annual revenue / size:

XXL ‐ more than $25m pa

Segment of NFP sector:

Social Services

Operating in: