“When we find a cure for multiple sclerosis – and we will – it won’t be because of any one person. It will be because of all of us, working together.”
Please meet the valuable members of our dedicated team.
Chief Executive OfficerRead More
Rohan brings a track record of success, particularly in relation to public health advocacy and stakeholder engagement. He commenced as CEO of MS Australia in December 2020, having previously served as CEO of Palliative Care Australia.
Rohan also worked in senior advocacy roles at the National Heart Foundation for more than a decade; was Director Public Affairs at the Australian Medical Association; and was a political adviser to Australian national and territory ministers.
BMedSc (Hons) PhD
Head of ResearchRead More
Dr Julia Morahan oversees the research funding and coordinating activities of MS Research Australia. This includes the MS Research Australia competitive grant program, national MS research collaborations and commissioned research projects. She also oversees the communication of the latest MS research activities to MS Research Australia stakeholders, donors and the broader MS community.
Julia has a Bachelor of Medical Science from the University of Sydney and a PhD in Neurology and Genetics undertaken at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Sydney. Following her PhD, which investigated the neurodegenerative condition Motor Neuron Disease (MND), Julia was funded by MND Australia to undertake a postdoctoral fellowship to look at genetic and environmental factors in the development of the disease.
In 2009, Julia switched her focus to MS and became the first recipient of a joint MS Research Australia – MS UK Fellowship, to work at the University of Oxford which was supported by the Macquarie Group Foundation. Upon Julia’s return to Sydney in 2012, Julia joined MS Research Australia as the Research Development Coordinator, followed by her role as the Deputy Head of Research.
HEAD OF COMMUNICATIONS, MARKETING AND OPERATIONSRead More
Petricia Augustus oversees the communications and marketing programs as well as the operational management including IT systems, telephony, event logistics and office management.
Petricia has over two decades of providing essential skills in community engagement, communications, public relations and operational management. She has diversified experience in a number of sectors including not-for-profit, medical research, health care, complementary medicine, IT, fleet management and local government.
INTERIM HEAD OF RELATIONSHIPS, FUNDRAISING AND DEVELOPMENTRead More
Tim’s role as Interim Head of Relationships, Fundraising and Development is to advance MS Research Australia’s philanthropic, financial and reputational capital both nationally and internationally. Working closely with the Chief Executive Officer, Board, Leadership Council, allied MS organisations and staff, he is responsible for developing strategies to build relationships that foster philanthropic giving in support of the organisation’s MS research goals and projects. With support from his team, Tim manages philanthropic relationships across our individual, corporate and foundation donor base. Engaging our partnerships amongst government, business, pharmaceutical and community groups is also an important part of her role. Before commencing this role, Tim was MS Research Australia’s Corporate Partnerships Manager.
Tim graduated from the University of Warwick in the UK with a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in English. Prior to joining MS Research Australia, Tim worked for twenty years in the arts sector. He has a background in fundraising, leadership, strategic planning, program management and creative thinking.
HEAD OF FINANCERead More
Patrick Foong consults to MS Research Australia as the Head of Finance and is responsible for all financial aspects of the organisation as well as the parent company Multiple Sclerosis Australia. He was appointed as the Company Secretary to MS Research Australia in August 2016.
Patrick graduated from the Queensland University of Technology with a Bachelor of Business, majoring in accounting and is a qualified CPA. Patrick brings over 20 years of working experience in both charitable and corporate organisations.
BSc (Hons) PhD
Deputy Head of ResearchRead More
Dr Hamish Campbell is responsible for the communication of research information to the MS Research Australia community. Hamish also oversees the NSW MS Research network and the MS Clinical Trials Network.
Hamish holds a BSc(Hons) in Genetics and a PhD in Molecular Cell Biology from the University of Otago (New Zealand). Following the completion of his PhD, Hamish was recruited by the Children’s Medical Research Institute (Sydney), where his primary research focused on the immune system, autoimmune disease and cancer.
Previously, Hamish has co-authored a number of scientific articles and has been an invited speaker at international conferences. Hamish also has extensive experience in the governance of science with previous positions on ethics, biosafety and scientific grant advisory committees.
BSc (Adv) Hons, PhD
RESEARCH DEVELOPMENT COORDINATOR
Currently on Maternity LeaveRead More
Dr Tennille Luker is responsible for the communication of research information to the MS Research Australia community. She also oversees the NSW MS Research Network, MS Clinical Trials Network and the Australian New Zealand MS Genetics Consortium (ANZgene).
Tennille has a BSc (Adv) Hons in Biochemistry from the University of Sydney and a PhD in Molecular Biology from the Australian National University. Upon completion of her PhD, Tennille worked at the Children’s Medical Research Institute where she focused on the genetics of head development.
Tennille has experience in editing and has been a member of several conference organising committees. She has also presented lectures to high school and university students.
BSc (Hons) PhD
RESEARCH DEVELOPMENT COORDINATORRead More
Dr Fiona McKay is responsible for the communication of research information to the MS Research Australia community. She also oversees the NSW MS Research Network, MS Clinical Trials Network and the Australian New Zealand MS Genetics Consortium (ANZgene).
Fiona holds a BSc (Hons) in Biological Sciences and a PhD (Microbiology) from the University of Wollongong.
From 2003-2020, Fiona worked in the immunology of MS at the Westmead Institute for Medical Research, University of Sydney where her research encompassed cellular response to MS therapies; the influence of MS risk genes; and the role of EBV and innate immunity in MS. She has extensive experience in writing and reviewing academic manuscripts, ethics and governance documentation and research grant applications.
RN, MSCN, PhD
Clinical Platform CoordinatorRead More
Dr Therese Burke is responsible for the emerging clinical platforms within MSRA; working within the pillars of Stop and Reverse MS in adaptive clinical trials, the patient centred portal and the accelerated discovery pipeline, as well as developing clinical platforms in the area of social and applied research.
Therese is a Registered Nurse, an MS Certified Nurse and holds a research PhD from The University of Notre Dame, Australia. Therese worked for over 20 years in the Immunology clinical and research unit at Westmead Hospital as a clinical nurse consultant and divided her time between the clinical care and treatment of patients living with MS, and as Research Manager for the MS and MND teams. Most recently, Therese’s PhD focused on the lived experience of Relapsing Remitting MS and led to clinical recommendations in the field, followed by post-doctoral research exploring the role of the MS Nurse in Australasia. Therese has also been a Human Research Ethics Committee member for many years with experience in ethics reviews, submissions and governance. Therese is a Past President of MS Nurses Australasia and the International MS Nurses Certification Board and has recent experience in both presenting and publishing research.
Grants CoordinatorRead More
Gabrielle coordinates MS Research Australia’s grants program, from enquiries, applications and peer reviews through to the Research Management Council.
Gabrielle completed a Bachelor of Communications majoring in Political and Social Science at University of Technology Sydney and jumped straight into the grants world.
As well as working and volunteering for several not-for-profits, Gabrielle has assisted in developing her family’s growing childcare business over the last 12 years.
TRUSTS & FOUNDATIONS MANAGERRead More
Julia’s role is to establish and manage philanthropic relationships with Trusts and Foundations both nationally and globally. This involves project development in addition to researching, developing, writing, submitting and acquitting grant proposals. She also aims to increase awareness and the understanding of the significant role that MS Research Australia plays in the advancement to better treat, prevent, stop and reverse multiple sclerosis, and to highlight the potential of this to happen within the next 10 years, in order to secure and grow philanthropic income.
Julia holds a Bachelor of Economics from The University of Sydney and is a qualified Chartered Accountant. After a career in Stockbroking as an Equities Analyst covering the Media Sector, Investment Banking as a Corporate Advisor in the Media and Telecommunications Sector and experience in Business Development, she moved into the Philanthropic Sector to help support the needs of the community.
With previous similar Trusts and Foundations experience with local charities, Julia is based in Melbourne and is MS Research Australia’s representative in Victoria.
COMMUNITY FUNDRAISING MANAGER - KISS GOODBYE TO MSRead More
Tanja is responsible for leading and growing MS Research Australia’s community fundraising campaigns Kiss Goodbye to MS and The May 50K. This includes the planning, strategy development and implementation to acquire and retain community fundraisers and their donors, as well as project management, marketing and communications, event management, fundraiser liaison and campaign operations. Tanja also regularly consults on the global Kiss Goodbye to MS and The May 50K campaign.
In 2010, Tanja graduated from Hochschule Fresenius in Hamburg, Germany with a Bachelor of Media and Communication Management, majoring in online and media management. Tanja initially volunteered for Kiss Goodbye to MS followed by a contract with the Kiss Goodbye to MS campaign in 2016. She then went to pursue her fundraising career at the National Breast Cancer Foundation, before joining the team at MS Research Australia again in 2018.
Gift in Wills and Planned Giving Manager
Currently on Maternity LeaveRead More
Nicki’s role is to deliver MS Research’s Australia’s Gift in Wills program. She is responsible for leading the growth of Gift in Will income stream by developing strategies to build relationships that foster increased philanthropic support of the organisation’s MS research goals and projects.
Nicki graduated from University of Technology Sydney with a Bachelor of Business and holds qualifications in fundraising and event management. She has almost 10 years’ experience in community and event fundraising, having worked across a number of high profile fundraising campaigns at Cancer Council NSW and the National Heart Foundation.
GIFT IN WILLS AND PLANNED GIVING MANAGERRead More
Janene’s role is to deliver MS Research’s Australia’s Gift in Will and Planned Giving programs. She is responsible for leading the growth of Gift in Wills income stream by developing strategies to build relationships that foster increased philanthropic support of the organisation’s MS research goals and projects.
Janene holds a Bachelor of Business from ACU with a major in Marketing and Management. An experienced fundraiser with over 14 years experience across the for-purpose sector. Prior to joining MS Research Australia Janene held positions with Australian Red Cross, Caritas Australia, St Vincent de Paul Society NSW and Children’s Cancer Institute.
RELATIONSHIP AND PLANNED GIVING COORDINATORRead More
Tara Koomen currently manages the Relationship and Planned Giving programs of MS Research Australia.
Tara holds a Bachelor of Science in Social Psychology and a Masters in International Development Studies from the University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Tara worked for several not-for-profit organisations overseas, before moving to Sydney in 2016. Prior to joining MS Research Australia, she worked for Médecins Sans Frontières Australia and World Animal Protection Australia & New Zealand.
Community Fundraising CoordinatorRead More
Shannen graduated from the University of Notre Dame Australia with a Bachelor in Media and Communications, with a Major in Film and Screen Production. After taking part and fundraising herself for several charity runs and events, Shannen realised her passion lied with the Philanthropic sector. Following her previous roles at ChildFund Australia and FIA, she found herself falling in love with community fundraising.
Marketing and Communications ManagerRead More
Jess is part of the Marketing and Communications team and is responsible for managing the digital marketing and media platforms as a tool to execute marketing and communications initiatives for MS Research Australia.
Jess graduated from Macquarie University with a Bachelor of Marketing and Media and has previously worked extensively within the allied health sector and business advisory sector, managing all things marketing, from creatives, to events, digital and more!
Digital Marketing Coordinator
Sophie is part of the Marketing and Communications team, looking after everything digital marketing related. Sophie graduated from University of New South Wales with a Bachelor of Media (Communications and Journalism) and a Bachelor of International Business.
Sophie has previously worked in numerous small businesses in digital marketing and has a passion for design and content.
Office Administrator and Executive Assistant
Anita’s role as the Office Administrator and Executive Assistant is to provide high level support to the Chief Executive Officer and to the teams across the organisation.
Prior to joining MS Research Australia, Anita worked primarily in the public service for the Northern Territory Government and the Victorian Public Sector in a variety of corporate support positions.
She is currently studying a Bachelor of Communications at Deakin University.
DATABASE MANAGERRead More
Jason’s role as Database Manager is to lead the strategic development of MS Research Australia’s CRM in order to support the Fundraising, Marketing, Research and Finance teams deliver their objectives. He manages the collection, maintenance and analysis of data in order to support the promotion of MS Research Australia’s achievements, raise its profile and increase its fundraising and marketing capabilities.
Jason has worked with a vast selection of organisations in the Not-for-Profit sector for nearly a decade. He has a background in Solution Design, Implementation, Training, Analysis and Data Management, across all streams of fundraising.
Cassandra works alongside the Database Manager to support MS Research Australia with data services to support their work across organisation. She is responsible for the day to day management, donation processing and use of the donor management database.
Cassandra has been in the Non-for-Profit sector for over 7 years specializing in customer service, finance and data administration.