Board of Directors
“The Board of Directors hold overall responsibility for the direction and management of Australian MS research initiatives. Their directives involve scientific advice prepared by the International Research Review Board and provide direction to future grant investments.”
MSc, RN, AICD
Appointed to the Board 2019Read More
With over thirty-five years’ experience in health and human services, Des has held senior executive public sector positions across a broad range of portfolios responsible for clinical, service delivery and policy and planning portfolios. He was also the inaugural CEO for the Mental Health Council of Australia and continues to have engagements with a broad range of non-government organisations. Des has represented jurisdictions on a broad range of national forums including the Council of Australian Government committees. Of note was Des’s role in national committees responsible for the moulding and implementation of the Rudd Health Reforms and the NDIS. Des has held an adjunct Associate Professor position with the University of Tasmania, College of Health and Medicine and is active in the Menzies Institute for Medical Research MS Flagship.
Professionally, one of Des’ most prized achievements was the dedication of a Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Award to the Mental Health Council of Australia for his services to consumer and carer participation in health service planning and individual care, a principle he continues to advocate strongly for today.
Appointed to the Board 2020Read More
George is a Director at Flinders Financial Services, specialising in taxation advice and planning, business consulting and business structuring. He has significant expertise and a particular interest in providing tailored advice for family businesses, sportspeople and aged care facilities.
George also has experience in variable outgoing audits for commercial tenancies and compliance audits of self-managed superannuation funds.
George is currently the President of the MS WA.
George’s interest in MS is due to seeing his Mum and close friends live with the disease.
Appointed to the Board 2019Read More
Ron has had a career in the Commonwealth public service, as a government lawyer, an economist and as a deputy CEO and CEO. He ran the National Film and Sound Archive for ten years, went on to be the Deputy Commonwealth Ombudsman and finished his full-time career as the Commonwealth Ombudsman. In semi-retirement, he was Australia’s first Aircraft Noise Ombudsman, and the first Chair of the Australian Research Integrity Committee, a role he still occupies. He now also works as a consultant in the fields of complaints, investigations, public engagement, and general management, as well as a number of voluntary and Board roles. Ron is currently a non-executive Director on both the MS Limited and MS Australia Boards.
In 2006 Ron’s wife was diagnosed with MS and since then his voluntary work has increasingly focussed on organisations working in the MS field.
Horst was appointed to the MS Australia Board in December 2020, and also serves on MSWA’s board as Vice President. He has worked for the last twenty-three years in Financial and Commercial Management involved with business growth and design strategies, process and transactional improvements together with traditional Financial Management. Horst has gained management experience in a broad and diverse range of industries, with key involvement in many management disciplines including, risk and compliance, treasury, taxation, business strategy and organisational development.
LLB, Grad. Cert. Legal Prac, Cert. Governance (GIA), Admitted to Supreme Courts of WA, Vic and Tas
Appointed to the Board 2020Read More
Sharlene is currently a senior legal counsel with a government based enterprise, and a guest lecturer with the University of Tasmania. She brings to the Board extensive knowledge and experience as a legal and governance professional having previously worked professionally overseas and in various Australian jurisdictions. Sharlene has experience as a General Manager, Company Secretary, A/CEO and General Counsel with a number of organisations. Sharlene has been on various Boards for in excess of 11 years, having served on the MS Boards in WA, VIC, Tas, NSW and the ACT as well as joining the MS Australia Board in 2019.
Sharlene lives with relapsing remitting MS and is excited to see people living with MS serving on the MS Research Australia Board and is honoured to have been entrusted with this role on behalf of all people and carers living with MS.
Chris Gillies is a person living with MS. In addition to serving on the Board of MS Australia since 2001, she serves on the Boards of MS Limited, holding the position of Chair from 2006-2013, Australian Home Care Services, and until recently MS Research Australia.
Chris brings to the Board extensive executive experience in mergers, acquisitions, organisational change and information technology. She is an independent Non-Executive Director serving on a number of boards and committees and advises boards on establishing IT Governance leadership. Prior to her board career, Chris was Group Executive, Group Services at St George Bank where her role included managing the integration with Advance, Chief Information Officer for the Bank of Melbourne and Victorian Director of the DMR Group.
Chris has over 20 years’ experience as a Director and more than 40 years’ experience in business management and IT.
BA Acc (S.A.I.T.), Grad Dip App Fin & Inv, FCA, GAICDRead More
Christine was appointed to the MS Australia Board in 2016. Following a period as Acting CEO of MS SA & NT in 2017, she returned to the MS Australia Board in late 2017 and resumed as President of MS SA & NT.
Christine has extensive global experience in strategy and operations across diverse industries in the public and private sectors as CEO and other executive roles including with Santos Ltd, F H Faulding & Co Ltd and Barossa Valley Estate Ltd.
She has been responsible for major change including revenue growth; restructure; M & A and efficiency improvements. Christine has raised equity and debt funding and has been awarded multi-million dollar government grants.
Christine now consults with organisations, advising on improvement and growth opportunities, financing, preparation of strategic and business plans and assistance with implementation.
She also co-wrote and now delivers the capstone subject in the Masters of Applied Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the University of Adelaide, guiding entrepreneurs pitching their business ideas.
BComm, FCA, FTIA, GAICDRead More
BA LLB, GradDipAppCorpGov, FGIA FCGI, GAICDRead More
Bronwyn was appointed to the MS Australia Board in July 2021. She is a qualified lawyer, an experienced Company Secretary, Board Chair and Director and General Manager, having recently completed a nine year term as Non-Executive Director of Deaf Services Ltd, with the last two years as Chair of the Board.
Bronwyn has also performed the role of Corporate Secretary and General Manager, Legal and Governance for the Queensland Law Society, was the Assistant Company Secretary for Queensland Rail and recently accepted the full-time role of Company Secretary for Allianz Partners Australia.
Bronwyn is a Graduate of AICD, has a Graduate Diploma in Applied Corporate Governance from Governance Institute of Australia and is a qualified lawyer.
Vicki was appointed to the MS Australia Board in July 2021. Vicki is the Chief Executive of the Group of Eight (Go8) research intensive universities, responsible for 70% of all university-based research in Australia. Prior to her role with the Go8, she held a similar role with the Australian Technology Network (ATN) of Universities.
Vicki is currently on a number of national and international committees and Councils and has also previously been on the MS Research Australia Leadership Council.
In 2018, 2019 and 2020 Vicki was named by the Australian Financial Review Power List as in the top tree most influential people in Australia’s education sector.
Vicki is committed to the broad area of disability and specifically MS and her sister is living with MS and was diagnosed when she was 40.