THE

TEAM

A DIVERSE TEAM

Our agency is built on our people and their desire to thrive...“to grow vigorously, flourish and be successful.” This definition drives us every day. It's our commitment to eachother and to our clients. 

 

Who are ‘Thrivers’?

 

We’re "CORP-SUMER" specialists with different backgrounds in corporate and consumer PR (b2b, b2b & b2b2c). We are digital natives, a diverse bunch of curious storytellers, innovators, creatives, challengers & brand advocates.  

 

How do our clients describe the Thrivers? Smart. Resourceful. Energetic. Bold. Honest. Accountable. Collaborative. It's why many of our clients are friends and long standing colleagues. 

 

Outside of work, we’re sports nuts, tech geeks, travel adventurers, food lovers and parents. Meet some of us!

 
LEILANI ABELS
Founder, Managing Director

Leilani is founder and MD of Thrive. She started the company at 25 and has built it to be one of the most successful independent PR agencies in Australia with established offices in Melbourne and Sydney and most recently Brisbane and Auckland. She has represented some of the world's biggest brands and has devised strategic communications plans that have delivered great success to emerging companies. With an enviable network of influencers and in-depth local knowledge, her expertise lies in media communication and strategic planning.

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KELLY STAMBANIS

General Manager (Melbourne)

A driven public relations professional with over seventeen years experience, Kelly is a vital asset to Thrive. Throughout her career she has directed some of Thrive’s most prestigious accounts, devised and delivered stand-out client strategies and nurtured relationships between consulting teams and clients. With her ‘glass half full attitude’, Kelly’s creative approach ensures her clients receive the most effective strategy and tactics for their campaigns. A long-serving senior team member, Kelly has played a critical role in shaping Thrive and helping it become the success it is today. She took over the reigns as General Manager of the Melbourne office in July 2015 and sits on the the company’s national Executive Team.

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CLARE BASIRE
Business Director (Sydney)

Clare is a skilled marketing and communications specialist who has worked across global markets including Europe and ANZ. Clare’s broad, 14 years’ experience spans corporate, telco, FMCG and tourism. Through her work at leading Australian PR agencies she has earned a reputation for building successful teams and delivering superior results with award winning campaigns. She brings enthusiasm, unwavering commitment, and dedication to every job at hand. Clare has worked on integrated communications strategies with major corporate brands including Allianz, Sony,Kelloggs, Nestle and Unilever.

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LUCY ALLEN
Business Director (Melbourne)

With in-house and agency experience, Business Director, Lucy Allen has over a decade of industry expertise to contribute to the team. Not only bringing her skills in Public Relations but a background in Journalism and Marketing, Lucy brings an understanding of both sides of the coin. The opportunity to meet new people, the challenge of ‘the sell’ and the freedom to think creatively and push boundaries is what keeps Lucy in love with PR and why we love having her on the Thrive team.

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LUCINDA KENNEDY

Auckland Lead

Lucinda Kennedy is a public relations and media expert with specialised experience in New Zealand and abroad. In both Auckland and New York City, Lucinda has led public relations campaigns for a host of world-renowned clients. She has also worked as a journalist at both ACP Media and Bauer Media Group and consequently has a deep network of contacts as well as an insider’s understanding of how the ever-changing media industry works. Lucinda is passionate about finding a voice for each of her clients in the media, both from a traditional and digital perspective, and she is known for her strategic capabilities on campaigns. She has an unwavering commitment to consistently delivering impactful results for her clients.

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MIRKO MANDIC
Digital Director

Digital Director Mirko Mandic is a commercially astute Digital Communicator who has led teams and devised social and digital strategies for some of the world’s biggest brands. He came to Thrive with diverse in-house experience across corporate heavyweights like FMCG powerhouses Coca-Cola Amatil, Beam Suntory and Molson-Coors to banking giant, Commonwealth Bank of Australia. A digital native who's equally comfortable behind a camera or a spreadsheet, Mirko’s strong analytical and creative skills deliver commercially sound but creatively brave ideas based on insights and behaviour. Part of Thrive’s Senior Leadership Team, Mirko has been tasked with integrating Digital and its Content Studio into the wider PR business. He oversees a talented team of content producers working across Thrive’s client portfolio along with digital-only Thrive clients.

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MARK DETRE
Senior Account Director

With a reputation for delivering high impact PR campaigns for global consumer and corporate clients in both the UK and Australia, Kat has over a decade of industry experience. A lover of food, lifestyle, and technology, Kat consistently maintains a holistic market and product awareness and thrives in working to challenging deadlines in high-pressure environments. Kat has built strong relationships with both clients and the media through her management of diverse, integrated PR and marketing campaigns.

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KAT MORRIS
Senior Account Director

With a reputation for delivering high impact PR campaigns for global consumer and corporate clients in both the UK and Australia, Kat has over a decade of industry experience. A lover of food, lifestyle, and technology, Kat consistently maintains a holistic market and product awareness and thrives in working to challenging deadlines in high-pressure environments. Kat has built strong relationships with both clients and the media through her management of diverse, integrated PR and marketing campaigns.

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FRANCES WILLS

Strategy Director (Australia and New Zealand)

A curious and passionate PR consultant, Frances Wills has an impressive history in the PR industry having worked for the past decade across health, tech and FMCG clients in Australia and New Zealand. Frances' refined PR skills and never-fail attitude, delivers strong leadership to the Sydney team. She brings enthusiasm, unwavering commitment, and dedication to every job at hand. She has a reputation with Thrive clients for her ability to inspire the team to deliver superior results. Frances has received numerous awards for her client campaign work and was recognised as the PR Institute of New Zealand's, 'Young Practitioner of the Year' in 2012. She currently works closely with Thrive management as National Strategy Director from the Sydney office.

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