Contact us at

Ben Devine

Founder and Director

Ben Devine founded Young Minds of the Future in 2013 as a part of his Community Problem Solving Project, which won the International Community Problem Solving Championships in 2015. Ben’s goal was to create a unique forum for collaboration that extended students above and beyond the normal confines of the everyday classroom environment, and engaged youth in addressing issues from local to international levels. Ben’s strong belief that youth engagement is a fundamentally important concept has continued to drive YMF as he continues to expand the program, hoping to reach an international level.

Lesley Sutherland


Perpetual educator, learner, thinker and optimist. Throughout her thirty-six years of teaching, Lesley has never lost her respect for young people’s ability to learn about their world and try to change it for the better. One of Lesley’s philosophies supports the power of young people to share their ideas with people around the world, and work towards peaceful solutions to troubles in our lives.

James Morris

Conference Convenor

James is an International Relations Honours student at the University of Queensland, researching patterns behind the recruitment of child soldiers around the world. Away from his studies, James has spent significant time working with youth in both academic and mentorship positions, and is driven to help create a world where all young people have access to the education they deserve. He firmly believes that the gateway to a great life is to learn as much as you can about the world around you; to that end, he is working with Young Minds of the Future to develop and grow our conferences.

Kristy Davies

Conference Convenor

Kristy recently graduated from the University of Queensland with dual Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Social Sciences degrees. Her studies, volunteer work, and research experiences have primarily focused on issues of education, gender based inequality and discrimination, and poverty. She strongly believes that knowledge has a transformative power in its ability to stimulate change and encourage people to think critically about the world around them. This belief led her to work with YMF, assisting in the organisation and development of their conferences.

Susanne Wightman

Social-Media Manager

Susanne recently graduated from the University of Queensland with a degree in Business Management, majoring in International Business. Primarily interested in globalisation, development, and economics – especially the role that empowerment of women will plays – she firmly believes that motivating and educating the youth of today will lead to a brighter and more sustainable future.

Tyler Vo

Conference Photographer

Tyler Vo took an interest in fine arts and digital media from a young age, his affinity for the arts and computer literacy has driven him into picking up hobbies such as photography and photo manipulation. His strong humanitarian sense brought him to YMF and he hopes to assist in furthering the expansion of the organisation.