Key Staff

Management Team

Nina Shahi | Chief Executive Officer  

Nina has over two decades of experience working in senior leadership roles in NFP organisations providing human services and social enterprises in Australia and overseas and holds an MBA as well as a Graduate Diploma in Public Administration from the University of Sydney. She is a purpose-driven leader and her passion lies in social justice; empowerment of migrants and refugees; ethical management and governance; diversity and inclusion; and climate change and sustainability. Nina is also a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and a board director of the Aboriginal Women and Children’s Crisis Service.



Michelle Lazaris | Family and Financial Inclusion Services Manager

Michelle Lazaris has over 15 years of experience working in the child, family, and social sectors. Michelle has worked with Metro Assist since 2007. She was appointed Family Services Manager in 2016 and, in 2021, her role expanded to include Family and Financial Inclusion Services. Michelle's passion and expertise are in working to support culturally and linguistically diverse communities. She is an experienced manager with a strong focus on advocacy, continuous improvement and stakeholder and project management. Michelle has a successful track record in bringing together operations and people.


Mohan Gunasekara | Settlement and Employment Manager

Mohan’s passion for working within the community sector to make a difference in the lives of those who seek support has seen Mohan him serve in key leadership roles within Not-for-profit organisations for 25 years. With a Bachelor of Commerce, he has extensive experience in community, children, and migrant settlement services including serving as Director of Services at the Western Sydney Migrant Resource Centre, and as Executive Manager at Illawarra Multicultural Service before starting with Metro Assist. His leadership, program management, budget development, and strategic planning expertise have been instrumental in driving positive change while supporting the needs of refugees, migrants, and the multicultural community.


Michelle Aldred | Human Resource Manager

Michelle joined Metro Assist in July 2016 with a genuine desire to contribute to the remarkable work undertaken in the “for purpose” sector. With over 15 years of human resource generalist experience, Michelle has worked in both the corporate and private sectors. Michelle manages all facets of the human resources function including talent acquisition, workforce planning, industrial relations, employee engagement, compliance, and change management. Michelle is passionate about ensuring Metro Assist is the best workplace possible and supporting staff to reach their full potential and bring their best to their roles.