Board of Directors nomination

The Board of Directors is the governing body that oversees the operation of the Australasian Academy of Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine (the Academy) to achieve its charitable purpose and meet its ethical, legal and financial obligations.

The Board consists of 12 Directors (formally referred to as Responsible Persons) from across Australia and New Zealand, plus a lawyer. It is a skills-based Board which actively seeks a diverse range of clinical, professional and corporate knowledge. The AusACPDM is progressing the election of eight positions with five sitting Directors with terms ending in 2022 planning to re-nominate.

The Board currently consists of:

  • Kirsty Stewart, Children’s Hospital at Westmead (President)
  • Christine Imms, Australian Catholic University (Past President)
  • Sarah McIntyre, Cerebral Palsy Alliance (President-Elect)
  • Alicia Spittle, University of Melbourne (President-Elect)
  • Kim Clayworth, Top End Health Service – NT (Secretary)
  • Tessa de Vries, University of Melbourne (Treasurer)
  • Ann Jorgensen, independent advisor
  • Gaela Kilgour, Canterbury District Health Board
  • Sarah Love, SensesWA
  • Simon Paget, Children’s Hospital at Westmead
  • Siobhan Reid, University of Western Australia
  • James Rice, Women’s & Children’s Hospital Adelaide
  • Sian Williams, Curtin University & University of Auckland

Eight Directors are reaching the end of their term. Of these; Kirsty Stewart, Sarah McIntyre, Tessa de Vries, Sarah Love and Gaela Kilgour are re-nominating, and Kim Clayworth, Simon Paget and Siobhan Reid are not re-nominating.

Terms are four years, with two year terms for President, and one year each for Immediate Past President and President-elect.


Members of the Academy are encouraged to nominate, provided they have been a paid member of the Academy for a continuous period of at least 24 months immediately prior to nominating for a Director positions. The Board particularly encourages Committee Members to seek nomination given their understanding of the AusACPDM operations.

The AusACPDM Board seeks a diverse mix of skills and experience that will help the Academy achieve its Strategic Plan 2020-2025.

Nominees for 2022 are:

  • Georgina Clutterbuck (new nomination)
  • Jenny Downs (new nomination)
  • Adrienne Harvey (new nomination
  • Amy Hogan (new nomination)
  • Gaela Kilgour (re-nominating)
  • Sarah McIntyre (re-nominating)
  • Sarah Love (re-nominating)
  • Kirsty Stewart (re-nominating)
  • Tessa de Vries (re-nominating)


Georgina Clutterbuck

Lecturer, Physiotherapy | University of Queensland


I have been a member of the AusACPDM since 2016, and a member of the Membership and Finance committee since 2018. During this time I have led the subcommittee responsible for operationalizing Academy members’ feedback that people with childhood onset disabilities and their families should be eligible for AusACPDM membership. I am committed to continuing to work towards the AusACPDM’s strategic direction to expand membership, and believe that this has the potential to significantly strengthen not only our financial position, but the breadth and depth of skills and perspectives of our members. I believe that our members are the greatest asset of the Academy, and therefore I see this work as central to other strategic directions including diversifying educational opportunities, the reach and impact of the Academy, and financial sustainability. I would like to join the board to assist in shaping the future of the AusACPDM as an inclusive Academy at the forefront of education in childhood-onset disability.

Knowledge or skills that will help the AusACPDM achieve its Strategic Plan 

I have a background in project management, with particular skills in managing complex, long-term projects which may be undertaken across multiple sites under strict time limits. Examples of projects I have undertaken include:

  1. Development and implementation of the multidisciplinary group intervention program for CPL, Queensland’s largest provider of allied health services for children with disabilities. I undertook financial and business planning, developed the group content and presented this as a suite of digital resources, liaised with community organizations, facilitated group pilots in 12 centers across Queensland, conducted marketing activities, including liaison with media, and developed and conducted review and quality assurance processes.
  2. Management of a multisite randomized controlled trial of one of these groups (Sports Stars), a practitioner-led, peer-group sports intervention for children with CP, during my PhD (3 years full time). This included protocol development, recruitment, practitioner training, management of blinding, data collection and analysis, professional education to clinicians and dissemination of findings via infographics, social media, public lectures, journal articles and conference presentations.
  3. Chair of the AusACPDM subcommittee on operationalization of membership to include people with lived experience of childhood onset disability. During this process I have facilitated the collaboration of members of the Membership and Finance, Professional Development and Awards and Advocacy committees, as well as people with lived experience of childhood onset disability on the conference committee. In this role I have demonstrated my ability to draw on others’ knowledge and skills to produce tangible outcomes that are meaningful to members and support the Academy’s strategic directions.

I credit the success of these projects to my persistence, enthusiasm, organization and ability to collaborate with people from a variety of backgrounds to ensure that project outcomes reflect the diverse perspectives and strengths of all stakeholders.

New nomination, member of Membership & Finance Committee

Jenny Downs

Physiotherapist / Researcher | Telethon Kids Institute


My research vision is that all children with disability will live with improved health and quality of life outcomes, supported by the best methods for evaluating their needs and evidence-based interventions. My ultimate vision is that research and clinical progress will generate impacts at individual, clinical, organizational, and societal levels, with findings translated equitably according to need. In pursuit of this vision, I have dedicated my post-doctoral career to research focusing on children with intellectual disability including children with rare genetic disorders. Prior, my clinical background was physiotherapy where I have worked in Perth, Sydney and London in paediatric acute care and disability service settings. I was awarded a PhD in 2003, first working part time in research because of childcare responsibilities and I am now close to full time. I am currently Head of the Disability Research Program at Telethon Kids institute.

I am nominating to be a Director on the AusACPDM Board because of my support for the vision and aims of AusACPDM. I envisage that my contribution will mainly relate to three domains:

  1. My research program is multi-disciplinary and combines expertise in discovery and translational research activities in the child disability arena. In alignment with AusACPDM’s overall aim, I strive to promote excellent research and evidence-based clinical care. I am currently a member of the AusCPDM Scientific Education Committee conferring emerging insights into how AusACPDM works and enabling me to contribute to AusACPDM education and the promotion of research. I propose to contribute these skills further in Board activities.
  2. I work with local, national, and international collaborators in the intellectual disability and rare disease fields. I seek to support AusACPDM increase its impact as a peak body and support its reach into developmental medicine arenas such as intellectual disability and rare diseases.
  3. I am a member of the IAACD research committee where we are working to advance the objectives of the IAACD. The IAACD has directed us to build connections with community and health services providers in low resource settings, to promote research and clinical care in their setting. My contribution so far has been to initiate connections with one of the Western Pacific nations in preparation for a priority setting exercise. I have previous research experience in China which has afforded insights and expertise that could be of value to planning AusACPDM’s reach into low resource settings.

Knowledge or skills that will help the AusACPDM achieve its Strategic Plan 


  1. Deep knowledge and understanding of issues relating to intellectual disability and rare disorders, derived from epidemiological, measurement and evaluation studies, and working nationally and internationally.
  2. Dedication to achieving my vision for children with intellectual disability demonstrated through long term commitment to building evidence for practice along the discovery to translation pipeline. I bring capacity to apply this focus to supporting the Board to achieve its aims.


  1. Writing and journalism – I have published a career total of 175 papers, more recently two podcasts, and I work to translate research findings into communications for consumers. I am experienced at formulating a range of styles of writing to achieve specifical goals.
  2. Strategic planning – I have experience participating in high level planning and strategy meetings, at the Telethon Kids Institute (e.g., member of the Institute Science Team), Kalparrin where I am a Board member (see below), and with international Patient Advocacy Organisations in the US (e.g., International Rett Syndrome Foundation, DEE-P Combined Brain).
  3. Personal skills – My approach is open, collaborative and team oriented. I am clear in communicating my ideas and the steps that need to be taken.

New nomination: member of Scientific Education Committee

Adrienne Harvey

Senior Research Fellow / Team Leader | Murdoch Children’s Research Institute


I am interested in becoming a Director for the following reasons:

  • I have been part of the multidisciplinary AusACPDM since its inception. I am a clinician researcher with close to 30 years experience including extensive clinical involvement and a large growing body of research dedicated to improving the lives of children with developmental disabilities and their families. I want to ensure our academy continues to educate and advocate for people with disability and their families.
  • I am passionate about empowering and enabling the next generation of clinician researchers, particularly those in allied health professions, to implement evidence-based care to ultimately improve the lives of those we work with, and to develop their own careers. The AusACPDM Board provides a platform for me to facilitate this.
  • My values align closely with those of the AusACPDM, including diversity and inclusion, consumer engagement, impact and equity.
  • Being a Director will provide me with an opportunity to develop new and different skills and will allow me to work closely with esteemed colleagues to drive forward the Strategic Plan of the AusACPDM.

Knowledge or skills that will help the AusACPDM achieve its Strategic Plan 

  • Communications and relationship building. I have strong skills in this area and have created many strong local, national and international collaborations. I have also fostered strong consumer engagement through my research activities.
  • Event planning. I am currently the local committee chair for the upcoming Better Together AusACPDM/IAACD Conference and I was on the scientific committee for two Paediatric Physiotherapy Conferences held in Melbourne. In addition, I have convened a number of seminars through the CRE-CP and the Dyskinesia Research Group.
  • Strategic planning. Through my leadership roles at Murdoch Children’s Research Institute and the CRE-CP, I have been involved in many strategic planning activities and been instrumental in driving change within teams and larger groups.
  • I have strong writing skills, both in scientific writing and writing for the general population.
  • Professional development and education. I am currently on the Professional Development committee of the AusACPDM and have strong education skills having delivered many lectures, papers, instructional courses and other educational activities over my career.

New nomination: member of Scientific Education Committee

Amy Hogan

Researcher | Cerebral Palsy Society of New Zealand


I’ve been involved with the Academy’s work for several years now, including serving on several committees. I find the work to be fulfilling and engaging. Therefore, becoming a board member will enable me to expand on my Australasian collaboration work while bringing a lived experience perspective to the wider academy workplans.

Knowledge or skills that will help the AusACPDM achieve its Strategic Plan 

I bring the following experiences:

  • A lived experience of cerebral palsy and the complexities of navigating the health and education system within both the New Zealand and international context.
  • 20+ years’ experience in disability and health advocacy with a particular interest in knowledge translation, complex health needs, representation, and contemporary understanding of disability advocacy.
  • Experience in writing and publishing articles on a variety of health topics, both for an academic and lay audience.
  • In the past few years, I’ve developed good working relationships with people from many different community, research, and advocacy institutions to further their goals and plans for the short term or long-term future.

New nomination: member of Awards & Advocacy Committee and International Alliance & Strategic Affairs Committee

Gaela Kilgour

Physiotherapist | South Canterbury District Health Board, New Zealand


I am interested in remaining on the AusACPDM board as a director as I am passionate about providing education and advocacy to people with lived experience of disability and to the people who support and work in this area. I believe it is important for the Directors to represent a wide range of professionals who work from the grass roots level to the policy and financial level. I have worked as a clinical paediatric physiotherapist for almost 30 years and currently work in the community a small town called Timaru in New Zealand. I have also just completed and been awarded my PhD so I believe I can contribute at the practical, clinical, advocacy, professional development and research level of the Board.

My particular area of interest is addressing the AusACPDM Strategic Plans to develop relationships with low middle income countries in Australasia. I am currently on the Professional Development Committee of the AusACPDM Board and lead the Pacific Group which is working towards developing relationships within our Pacific region and networking to determine what their communities would like from the AusACPDM. I am also interested in ensuring the voice of First Nations and Torres Strait Islander people of Australia and Māori people of Aotearoa, New Zealand are considered as part of the Strategies moving forwards. As a member of the AACPDM and the Adaptive Sport Committee for the AACPDM, I also work hard to promote the AusACPDM within these connections with the International Alliance which I believe is an important networking and relationship opportunity.

Knowledge or skills that will help the AusACPDM achieve its Strategic Plan 

My knowledge and skills for the AusACPDM Board lie in my wide range of clinical, grass roots paediatric experience which includes working in New Zealand, England, Canada and Australia in all sectors of health care. I also have experience as a teacher, presenter and coach in the area of health, wellbeing, physical activity, participation and rehabilitation enabling me to communicate across a wide range of areas and with a diverse range of people. I completed my PhD through the University of Melbourne in November 2021 therefore have current skills and knowledge that would assist my role on the board to promote knowledge translation and develop effective and efficient project management. My experience and knowledge allow me to help contribute and work as part of a team to develop a variety of educational opportunities for our membership within the Professional Development Committee and as a Board member on four of the last five AusACPDM conference committees. I work hard to communicate and promote the work of the AusACPDM in New Zealand, with Australian colleagues, and further afield at the AACPDM. My skills in advocacy, strategic planning, communication and creative thinking are currently being used to develop the AusACPDM Pacific group and developing relationships within the Pacific and Pasifika communities.

Re-nomination: Director of the AusACPDM Board since 2014

Sarah McIntyre

Occupational therapist, Researcher, Epidemiologist | Cerebral Palsy Alliance


I value the importance of belonging to a multidisciplinary academy in the field of developmental medicine and love learning from members across all disciplines.

I would like to continue on as a Board member to contribute to the further growth of AusACPDM. I believe the next phase of AusACPDM is to broaden the membership, particularly for people with lived experience and to include all those who work in the field. I would like to increase our focus on equity, ensuring that education is accessible for all, especially those living and working in rural, remote, culturally diverse and low resource communities.

Knowledge or skills that will help the AusACPDM achieve its Strategic Plan 

  • I have been an active member of AusACPDM for 16 years, on the Advocacy and Awards Committee since it commenced and am on the Finance Committee for IAACD
  • I have leadership experience in organising scientific conferences and events in Australia and internationally
  • I bring a different skill set, being a researcher predominantly in the field of epidemiology. I am the current chair of the Australian Cerebral Palsy Register
  • I have strong leadership skills and enjoy mentoring researchers and clinicians
  • I have excellent working relationships nationally and internationally
  • I advocate passionately for issues of social injustice

Re-nominating: Director of the AusACPDM Board since 2018. I have thoroughly enjoyed representing the Awards and Advocacy Committee on the Board, taking issues that are important to the committee and our membership, and advocating for action at the Board level. Should I be re-elected I will serve as co-President for the next two years.

Sarah Love

Chief Executive Officer | SensesWA


I am a physiotherapist by original training, with over 35 years’ experience in childhood disability: clinically, in research, in leading teams and in teaching and training. My passion and long-term commitment have been, and remain, in teaching, training, and mentoring the next generation of clinician researchers. I am proud to have been one of the founding members of this Academy. It has become the peak education body in Southern hemisphere (in our field) and is one of the ways of providing the optimal educational and networking opportunities. During my term as Director, I have contributed to the governance and finance structures as well as to many of the biennial scientific conferences and wish to continue to contribute. I wish to be considered for renomination as believe I still have much to give, in leadership, mentorship, and governance. I believe I have the ability to bring the right people together at the right time to facilitate everyone‘s ability to provide the best evidence -based care.

Knowledge or skills that will help the AusACPDM achieve its Strategic Plan 

My personal and professional value set articulates with that of the Academy.

  • I bring people skills: the ability to identify the right stakeholders; to engage groups beyond the clinicians and to paint the vision in a way which will make others want to join us on the journey
  • I am a knowledge translator and have demonstrated success in delivering education in variety of methods and in a variety of settings nationally and internationally.
  • My sound governance, finance and management skill and knowledge will contribute to the Academy’s sustainability. I am a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
  • I am a creative thinker and writer and have been on 5 Conference committees delivering successful conferences and events for AusACPDM and other like organisations.
  • I have past successes in branding, fundraising and marketing as =t an organizational level
  • I initiated and led the creation of the AusACPDM Governance structure which is still in place and which sustains the Academy well.
  • My longevity in clinical care, research, academic and now in leadership in the disability sector gives great reach. I was a founding member of the International Alliance of Academies of Childhood Disability; was a member of the Nominating Committee to establish the first Board of Directors for the IAACD; have been instrumental in creating the Global Paediatric Education Committee, and currently a member of the Academy’s International and Strategic Alliances Committee. I was honoured to receive the AusACPDM Lifetime membership Award in 2020 in recognition of my skills and contribution.

Re-nominating: Director of the AusACPDM Board since 2006, including four years as President

Kirsty Stewart

Occupational Therapist | Kids Rehab, The Children’s Hospital at Westmead, NSW


I have been an active member of the AusACPDM since 2008, and was elected to the Board in 2018, President–elect in 2019 and President 2020-2022. I remain committed to the ongoing work of the Board and the Academy, both within our region and as part of the International Alliance of Academies of Childhood Disability (IAACD).

Knowledge or skills that will help the AusACPDM achieve its Strategic Plan 

I have a broad range of skills relevant to the Board, including most recently my role as President, representing the AusACPDM at the IAACD and on the Australia and New Zealand Cerebral Palsy Strategy collaborative. I am an active member of the Scientific Education Committee and have helped progress many of the AusACPDM strategic objectives including expanding the reach and impact of scientific education in our region and work with the IAACD. I have well developed organisational, communication, clinical and research skills and have had the opportunity to demonstrate my leadership capacity including as 2018 & 2020 Scientific Conference Co-Chairs, Chair of the Scientific Education committee 2018-2021, as President 2020-2022 and on various IAACD committees. I am keen to continue working with the Board, membership and those with lived experience to further the aims of the AusACPDM and increase our impact in the Pacific region.

Re-nominating: Director of the AusACPDM Board since 2018

Tessa de Vries

Coordinator, National Disability Research Partnership | University of Melbourne


I have been a Director of the AusACPDM Board and Treasurer since 2018. Prior to that I provided administrative support to the Board for two years, from 2016. I have pretty good corporate knowledge of the Academy and its operations, and would like to continue for another term.

Knowledge or skills that will help the AusACPDM achieve its Strategic Plan 

  • Offering education / research findings through a range of mediums e.g. webinars, podcasts, etc.
  • Accessible communication for a broad range of audiences (in particular people with disability)
  • Advocate and supporter of research done by and with people with disability and their leadership in research, education, government and more.
  • Project management and governance knowledge and skills: strategic planning, operation procedures and policies, organisational improvement and communication.
  • Broad networks in disability community, including disabled people’s organisations, government, services, advocates, representative organisations and peak bodies.
  • Financial management skills.

Re-nominating: Director of the AusACPDM Board since 2018, current Treasurer.


  • 24 January 2022: Board announces re-nominating and retiring Directors. Nomination form circulated to Academy members with call for nominations
  • 18 February 2022: Nomination forms due
  • 21 February 2022: Profiles of nominees made available to Academy members
  • 21 Feb – 28 Feb 2022: Voting occurs online
  • 2 March 2022: Outcome announced at Annual General Meeting