Announcing New Management Committee

As your newly elected President I would like to advise our association’s Annual General Meeting was held on Wednesday 25 November 2015. I was honoured to be elected as your President for the coming year and I am pleased to be leading a Management team of commitment, experience and passion. The full details of the results of the Election of Officers and Members of the Management Committee of Parkinson’s Queensland Incorporated is as follows:

  • President: Prof George D. Mellick
  • Vice President: Prof Peter Silburn
  • Secretary: Ms Paulette Montaigne
  • Treasurer: Mr Abhijit Khakar

Committee Members:

  • Ms Madonna Brady
  • Ms Ruth Coleman
  • Ms Lyn Healey
  • Ms Karen O’Maley

The annual report can be found here. Subsequently, I have asked the members to each provide a brief pen picture and photo to ensure everyone feels as though they know our team which has been added below.
I encourage you to contact our Management Team Members and our staff for information in respect to the election and our Annual Report.
Thank you for your support. Together we will have a year of promise and enthusiasm ahead.

George Mellick

Meet the Management Committee

Professor George D. Mellick
mellickGeorge Mellick obtained a PhD from the University of Queensland in 1996 (in the field of Medicine). Following postdoctoral research at the Karolinska Institute Sweden (Center for Genomics and Bioinformatics) and the University of Queensland, he was appointed Lecturer in the School of Medicine (University of Queensland) in 2004. He joined the Eskitis Institute Griffith University in 2006 as Associate Professor and was made Deputy Director of the Eskitis Institute for Drug Discovery in 2013 and full Professor in 2014. He also holds Honorary appointments in Neurology at the Princess Alexandra and RBWH, Brisbane and an Adjunct Appointment at the University of Queensland Centre for Clinical Research.
George is an interdisciplinary scientist who works on all aspects of neurodegenerative disease with an emphasis on Parkinson’s disease and related disorders. He has authored over 130 peer-reviewed research publications and is a regularly sought after reviewer for International Granting Agencies, Advisory Groups and Research Journals. George is also is an advocate for people affected by Parkinson’s disease and has been a member of PQI since 1999. He has previously served on the PQI Management Committee as the President and Vice-President and on the Board of Parkinson’s Australia.

Vice President
Professor Peter Silburn AM
Silburn-image029Neurologist, Peter Silburn is a Professor of Clinical Neuroscience at The University of Queensland and a world expert in the treatment and research of Parkinson’s disease, related neurodegenerative disorders and Deep Brain Stimulation.
Professor Silburn’s Deep Brain Stimulation work is changing the lives of patients with a wide range of diseases and conditions for whom standard medical therapies have not been effective, including patients with Parkinson’s, Dystonia, Tourette’s syndrome, Essential Tremor, and Post-stroke disorders.
Professor Silburn graduated from The University of Queensland in 1988 and commenced training in neurology at Princess Alexandra Hospital, completing his training at Oxford in United Kingdom at the Radcliffe Infirmary. He was subsequently the Clinical Lecturer in Neurology at the University of Oxford.
He then went to the Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, as a research fellow in the Department of Molecular Medicine. He returned to Brisbane in July 1996, commenced private practice and established affiliations with The University of Queensland.  He became full Professor in Neurobiology in 2006 and Foundation Professor of Clinical Neuroscience at the UQ School of Medicine in 2007.
Peter has been with Parkinson’s Queensland since 1996 and is a former President and Patron of Parkinson’s Queensland and is re-ignited and committed to working alongside a new committee of management plus the PQI members at Parkinson’s Queensland to ensure more services and supports are provided to the 17,000 Queenslanders with Parkinson’s.

Paulette Montaigne
paulette montaignePaulette has been Coordinator of the Ipswich Support Group of Parkinson’s for the past two years as well as being an Office Volunteer at PQI Springwood. In June 2014, she was appointed to the Ipswich Community Reference Group of the West Moreton Hospital and Health Care Services; a valuable forum for Parkinson’s. She is also on the Management Committee of U3A Ipswich & West Moreton Inc.
Paulette brings to her role as Secretary her extensive experience of project management and public relations. Over a period of 15 years, Paulette worked as a locally-engaged staff member of the Canadian High Commission in Canberra as Academic & Public Affairs Officer and followed by 6 years as Official Travel Coordinator for the Canadian Embassy in Paris. Since moving to Ipswich in early 2014, Paulette has involved herself with community groups and has become a strong advocate for support groups.

Abhijit Khakar
Abi Kharkar 3Abi Kharkar has worked in senior financial positions in the NFP sector over the last 10 years. He is currently the Chief Financial Officer of the Australian Labor Party in Queensland.
Abi commenced his career working in chartered accounting firms where he gained broad business knowledge in industries as diverse as banks, hospitals, hospitality, manufacturing and telecom. He holds a Master of Professional Accounting degree from Griffith University, and is a Certified Practising Accountant from CPA Australia. His responsibilities include provision of strategic and operational financial leadership to the organisations, and the oversight of all financial and business services including Corporate Governance, HR, Information Technology, Facilities Management and Supply Chain Management.

Committee Members:
Ruth Coleman
Ruth is a Sales Manager for the Townsville/Mackay region and is also the Support Group Coordinator for Townsville.
One of her main missions is to be able to let every person diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease know that there is support out there and that they are not alone. Ruth hopes that her knowledge and experience as a person living with Parkinson’s can contribute to Parkinson’s Queensland.



Lyn Healey
Lyn healeyLyn is a retired business owner with a nursing background. She has worked as
part of many and varied not for profit organisations over a period of forty years.
Her passion is fundraising however she has undertaken the role in a financial capacity on many of these committees.
Lyn is a member of Parkinson’s Queensland and has run two very successful fundraising events for Parkinsons Queensland in 2015 raising over $6000.
She has been a volunteer at Parkinson’s Queensland over the past 20 months, assisting with the office administration, fundraising, and in a small capacity supporting the Health Team.
Lyn is passionate about Parkinson’s Queensland having three generations of Parkinson’s disease prevalent in her family. She is well aware of the difficulties faced by people with this debilitating disease.

Madonna Brady
Madonna BradyDiagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2012, Madonna decided to embrace the now, do new things and make a difference. Madonna is also the Support Group Coordinator of the Young at Park support group.
Madonna believes quality of life is important for people with Parkinson’s and their partners, she would like to see more activities and exercise initiatives in QLD, such as non-contact
boxing and indoor bike riding.
She attended the World Parkinson’s Conference in 2013 and will be attending again in 2016.
Madonna has retired from work to concentrate on her health and enjoys spending her time on family, friends, music, patchwork, crafts and travel.
You can also find Madonna DJ’ing on www.radioparkies.com, an international web based radio station for people with Parkinson’s. She plays a wide range of music, and has special guests who share an insight into their connection with Parkinson’s.
Madonna lives with her husband and three daughters, two cats and Indy the Kerry Blue Terrier who sometimes comments on her radio show.

Karen O’Maley
Karen O'Maley Karen O’Maley is a  Nurse Consultant for Movement Disorders, the Inaugural president of the Australian College of Nursing (previously the RCNA) Movement Disorders Parkinson’s Nurse faculty and is currently working in a Private Neurology practice.
Karen has been working in the specialty of Neurology / neurosurgery nursing since 1990, in a collaborative practice with neurologists providing therapies for the management and treatment of movement disorders that require specialised nursing support.
Karens qualifications include Post Graduate Certificate of Neuroscience Nursing Bachelor of Nursing and Master of Nursing by Research.

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