Karma Cats

Our Team

Liz Bellward
Founder and Managing Director

Liz has held a number of management positions with two international businesses over the last 10 years.  For the last six years in the corporate world, Liz was employed by General Electric (GE), one of the largest companies in the world in positions ranging from managing total business responsibility for a $13 million dollar finance branch, training roles, operational positions, project management roles and in her last role was responsible for generating $360 million of business per annum through the efforts of over 500 staff.

Liz has travelled the world gaining experience with big cats.  She trained with an established US based business that is one of the top suppliers of animal actors for Hollywood.  She volunteered for a number of months at a private big cat zoo in New Zealand, Australia Zoo and at the Clouded Leopard Breeding Centre in Thailand.  For the last three years, Liz has been working hands on with 14 tigers and 2 cougars at Dreamworld’s Tiger Island.

After holding a passion for animals since a child, Liz has decided to marry her acute business acumen with her love of animals to help raise funds for conservation, participate in breeding programs as well as help improve the quality of life for captive species.

Liz holds a Masters in Animal Studies (Captive Animal Management) (UQ) as well as a Degree in Business (QUT) and an Associate Diploma in Business Management (TAFE).


Animal Management Team

Our Animal Management Team hold over 45 years of hands on experience from all over the world with many species of big cats, large hoofed stock such as giraffe, antelope and zebra, primates, hyenas, elephants, birds of prey and Australian wildlife.  This only includes our management team, not keepers that we will seek closer to opening.

Our animal team hold extensive management experience and consult across the globe to private exotic animal owners, filming with animal actor, as well as to large facilities such as zoos and breeding centres.

Due to current employment contracts, the profiles of our Animal Management Team have not been published on our website.


Dr Gordon Dryden
Director & Chairman of the Board

Dr Gordon Dryden is the Principal of Dryden Animal Science, a consultancy company specialising in animal nutrition research, training and extension.  For 40 years, Gordon was employed by the University of Queensland as Senior Lecturer in Animal Nutrition.  He was also Deputy Head of the School of Animal Studies and Acting Head of the Department of Animal Production.

Gordon holds a PhD, Bachelor and Masters of Agricultural Science, and a Graduate Certificate in Education.  He has researched grazing animal nutrition in Australia, Norway, New Zealand and The Netherlands, and has coordinated and supervised study and research by many post-graduate students.  He has published many scientific papers and a textbook titled Animal Nutrition Science.

Gordon has consulted for the Solomon Islands and Sindh (Pakistan) governments, advised the Unitec Institute of Technology (Auckland) on degree program development, and recently visited the Qinghai Academy of Animal and Veterinary Sciences (China) under the Chinese expert visitor program. He was a member of the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) team to rehabilitate the National University of Timor Lorosae.  He is still involved with ACIAR projects in East Timor, investigating the nutrition of Bali cattle. He is a member of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Deer Specialist Group and the Scientific Steering Committee for the VIIth International Deer Biology Congress.

Gordon holds honorary positions at the University of Queensland and Curtin University of Technology.  He was President of the Gatton branch of the National Tertiary Education Union and Vice-President of Ipswich Girls’ Grammar School P&F Association.


John Rigoni

John is the Director and Dealer Principal at Metro Honda & Ducati Motorcycles in Victoria.  He purchased the dealership over 4 years ago to fulfil his passion of owning and operating his own business.  In that time John has applied his corporate skills to grow the business through the implementation of new ideas and processes to gain efficiencies and greater focus on customer service and satisfaction. 

John holds a Bachelor of Business (Accounting) and is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants.  He spent 13 years with the international accounting firm KPMG, leaving as a Senior Manager in 2002.  In that time John worked with a variety of clients in numerous industries across Melbourne, Sydney and Philadelphia (USA).

He possesses a detailed understanding of internal controls and processes, results analysis and acceptable accounting practices.  John worked on the privatisation of public utilities and telecommunication focusing on accounting advice on complicated transactions.  In 2002 he joined GE Money as the Head of Financial Reporting for Australia and New Zealand.  His role required a variety of skills such as the integration of newly acquired businesses including AGC and Wizard Home Loans and building a financial reporting team of 40 professional staff.  He left GE Money in 2005 to become the owner of Metro Honda & Ducati.

John brings to Karma Cats the skills to ensure correct and effective financial recording, the ability to liaise with banks and auditors and the setup and review of internal controls.

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