WATCA’s Leadership Committee and Ambassadors are all volunteers with
a shared passion for protecting and growing Perth’s urban tree canopy.


Nick Cook

Nick has run a successful landscape gardening business in the Western Suburbs for over 30 years.

‘Lord of the Lake’ Nick has been a Director of Landcare group Friends of Lake Claremont since 2010 and Chairperson and Coordinator of the group since 2017. Nick has been a constant crusader in the conservation and enhancement of Lake Claremont, a 70 hectare Conservation Category Wetland and Bush Forever Site.

In 2021 Nick was recognised for his conservation work by his addition to the Honours list of the Conservation Council of WA. He is a passionate conservationist who feels strongly about the need to preserve our urban canopy.

Sarah Allchurch
Deputy Chair

Sarah is a communications & strategy specialist with 20 years’ experience in strategic corporate public relations, media management, investor relations and government relations.

Sarah provides strategic communications and investor relations advice to a diverse range of private and listed companies and individuals throughout Australia.

Most recently, Sarah was Director of Communications & Strategy for Kate Chaney’s successful campaign to win the federal seat of Curtin at the 2022 Australian election. She reckons lots of people care about our urban canopy and now is the perfect time for WATCA to shake the tree.

Kathy Lees

Kathy is an urban planner who is passionate about sustainable development that makes a positive contribution to the environment and community.

She has over 25 years’ experience in local government, both implementing and writing planning legislation and policy. This has provided her with a keen understanding of what is working in our city and what isn't. The failure of our decision makers to adequately respond to increasing environmental pressures is a major concern, but Kathy has a strong belief in the power of community to make positive change happen.

Kathy looks forward to Perth being a city where the importance of trees is recognised and a thriving urban forest becomes a dominant element of our suburbs for future generations.

Esther Cole
South Metro Community Leader

Esther has a background in education and policy.  Working across a range of communities within the metro area, she has an amplified recognition of the need for equity and what it takes to grow healthy communities. She has witnessed first hand that when children have access to nature, their mental and physical wellbeing outcomes improve.

Increasingly frustrated by diminishing tree canopy in her own neighbourhood, Esther established one of the OG local TCA groups - Melville Tree Canopy Advocates.

She believes that urban planners should be able to do better, allowing for both affordability and canopy coverage -  while there is still time to do so. 

Wendy Garstone

A former Local Government Landscape Planner,  Wendy is a mainstay at the Bayswater Urban Tree Network and helped establish the Wanneroo Tree Canopy Advocates Group.

She believes that effective government outcomes must involve the community and that improved planning laws that prioritise tree canopy are the way forward.

Renee McLennan
North Metro Community Leader

Renée has represented her community as a local government Councillor and Mayor of the Town of Bassendean, championing a vision of green, sustainable suburbs.

She recognises the importance of trees to the wellbeing of communities and the enormous benefits they bring. Renée has been a strong advocate for tree preservation in her own patch, but despite the support of her local government and community, she sees the critical role that state government policy and tree protections must play if our kids are to have a liveable city in the future.