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About Glaucoma Australia

Glaucoma Australia is the peak glaucoma association in Australia and focuses on educating the community about glaucoma, patient support and funding Australian glaucoma research. Incorporated in 1998, it’s a registered, non-government, not-for-profit charity.

Glaucoma Australia’s Mission is: To eliminate glaucoma blindness

On This Page

History

In 1986 an ophthalmologist and a glaucoma patient formed a Steering Committee to create a Glaucoma Foundation as there was no lay organisation concentrating specifically on glaucoma in Australia.

By 1988 a Foundation had been incorporated and registered as a charity and started creating initiatives to fulfil the aims and work towards the organisation’s mission. At this time, it was known as The Glaucoma Foundation of Australia Inc.

The three foundational aims of the organisation were:

  1. to increase community awareness of the glaucomas as potentially blinding diseases and thus the need for regular eye checks;
  2. to provide information and support for glaucoma patients and their families, thus reinforcing advice and explanations given by treating ophthalmologists, and improving compliance with therapy;
  3. to develop financial resources to fund research into the glaucomas in this country.

In March 1999 it was decided to alter our name from The Glaucoma Foundation of Australia Inc. to Glaucoma Australia Inc.

The discovery of the disease called glaucoma dates back to the 17th century. Its role as a cause of blindness has been known since the 19th century. Its prevention will hopefully be the work of the 21st century.

Click here to learn more about the history of the word “Glaucoma”

Some of Glaucoma Australia’s influential members are recognized through our mascots, four owls that remind many of our Friends and Supporters of Glaucoma Australia and its history.

Glaucoma Australia mascots

Our first mascot owl, was named in 2004 by a friend and supporter of Glaucoma Australia, Mrs Joan Melton, who chose the name Hope – Helping Others Preserve Eyesight.

Miss Kathleen Holmes (OAM)

The second of our mascot series, Holmes, was named in 2008 to honour Glaucoma Australia co-founder Miss Kathleen Holmes (OAM), who herself was a glaucoma patient.

Associate Professor Ivan Goldberg (AM)

In 2011, Goldie was created to recognise the work of our co-founder, Associate Professor Ivan Goldberg (AM), who has recently been awarded the title of ‘Life Member’ of Glaucoma Australia.

Mr Marcus Quinlivan

Quin was launched in 2017 in honour of life member Mr Marcus Quinlivan, and his support of the William A Quinlivan – Glaucoma Australia Research and Scholarship Fund.

Click here to purchase our current mascot owls!

What we do today

Our aims:

  1. to increase community awareness that glaucoma is a potentially blinding eye disease and to stress the importance of regular optic nerve checks;
  2. to provide information and support for glaucoma patients and their families, reinforcing advice and explanations given by eye practitioners and improving adherence to therapy;
  3. to raise funds for Australian glaucoma research;
  4. to support eye and other health providers, to maximise patient health outcomes;
  5. to advocate on behalf of the glaucoma community.

Our services:

  • offering education and support (including through the association’s freecall telephone number 1800 500 880 and our informative newsletter Glaucoma News)
  • supporting eye health professionals
  • awareness campaigns such as B.I.G. breakfast
  • funding research projects

As a member of the World Glaucoma Patient Association, Glaucoma Australia coined the awareness/fundraising tag line B.I.G Breakfast – where B.I.G. stands for Beat Invisible Glaucoma. B.I.G Breakfast is synonymous with Glaucoma Awareness World Wide.

With our council member and co-founder Associate Professor Ivan Goldberg AM and our National Executive Officer, Geoff Pollard, on the World Glaucoma Patient Association Board, our sights are set on eliminating glaucoma blindness.

Donations to Glaucoma Australia are used to fund our aims and services. At Glaucoma Australia, donations from our Friends and Supporters are put towards initiatives for the glaucoma community, ultimately contributing to Our Mission.

Where your money goes


Click here to make a donation

 

Glaucoma Australia has been endorsed as a deductible gift recipient by the ATO, and is licensed to collect for charitable purposes Australia wide.

Registered Charity logo

Memorandums of Understanding

As an establishment of official partnership with organisations that align with our mission and values, Glaucoma Australia is proud to have signed memorandums of understanding with each of the following Associations:

  • RANZCO (Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists)
  • Optometry Australia
  • Orthoptists Australia

Council Members

Mr Ronald J Spithill OAMMr Ronald J Spithill OAM - President
Qualifications: OAM, FTSE
Experience: Mr Spithill has a degree in electrical engineering and is a graduate of the Harvard Executive Program. He is Director Vodafone Hutchinson Australia (VHA) and Director Hutchinson Telecommunications Australia (HTAL). He is a Former Director Telecom New Zealand, Former Executive Vice President, Former Chief Marketing Officer and Member of the Executive Committee, Alcatel France and Former Chairman and Managing Director for Australia and New Zealand. Mr Spithill has over forty years in the telecommunications industry and led Alcatel's marketing forces globally.

Our President has addressed the World Economic Forum and is Past President of the Telecommunications Industry Association of Australia, Past Director of AEEMA, Past Director of Australia Industry Group, Past Member of Australian Business Council, Past Member of Malaysian Government Industry Advisory Panel, Past Member of NSW Government IT Advisory Board, and Past Member of Australian Government “Goldsworthy” Committee. He has also served on Advisory Councils to several Provincial Governments in China and is Past Director of the not-for-profit organisation- Good Beginnings Australia.

Today, in addition to serving on the Boards of VHA and HTAL, Mr Spithill also serves on the Advisory Board of a start-up company in high technology- Game Changer P/L. He is a Life Fellow of the Australian Telecommunications Society of Australia and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering. He was awarded the Order of Australia Medal for his services to the telecommunications industry.

Mr Ron Spithill has a passion for increasing glaucoma awareness, especially in families.

Click here to read the President’s Report 


Associate Professor Ivan Goldberg AM - Vice President
Qualifications: AM, MBBS, FRANZCO, FRACS
Experience: 
Fellow of the Royal Australian & New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists (RANZCO) and the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons. Currently Director of Eye Associates in Sydney; Head of the Glaucoma Unit and Visiting Ophthalmologist at the Sydney Eye Hospital, and Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Sydney.

Professor Goldberg has also held the position as an Instructor in Ophthalmology at the Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis (USA), Director of Glaucoma Services at Sydney's Prince of Wales Hospital, Founding President of the Asian Glaucoma Society and Past President of Glaucoma Australia and both the World Glaucoma Association and RANZCO.

Professor Goldberg is a well-respected member of the international community of glaucoma sub-specialists and member of the American Glaucoma Society, the Becker Glaucoma Society and the Glaucoma Research Society of the International Council of Ophthalmology. He travels both domestically and internationally, collaborating in educational and research activities with fellow glaucoma sub-specialists, as well as contributing to professional meetings.


Mrs Cristina Lynn - Honorary Treasurer
Qualifications: BBus, CA
Experience: 
Her experience is: Cristina Lynn is a qualified Chartered Accountant. After many years working for a Big Four firm in Australia and overseas she now owns and works in a boutique consulting firm providing technical and business advice to property owners with large parking assets (airports, hospitals, shopping centres, etc). Her skills encompass a broad range of management and financial capabilities as well as marketing, communications and business development. Her business has grown through the extensive use of online platforms including the website, newsletters, marketing campaigns as well as connections through linked in, twitter and a weekly blog. She is currently the president of Parking Australia on whose board she has been an active member for 10 years.


Mr Daniel Goldberg - Honorary Secretary
Qualifications: BSc, LLB
Experience: 
Mr Goldberg is a corporate lawyer, with experience across a wide range of commercial and finance transactions.

He is a partner at Addisons, a corporate law firm based in Sydney, where he advises clients on complex and time-critical transactions. He has also held legal and commercial roles at Macquarie Bank, Australia’s largest investment bank, and worked in private practice at Freehills (now Herbert Smith Freehills).

Since 2010, Mr. Goldberg has also been a board member of Wolper Jewish Hospital, a non-denominational specialist medical and rehabilitation hospital.


Ms Meredith Brooks - Council Member
Qualifications:  BA, FIAA
Experience: 
Ms Brooks was appointed to Council of Glaucoma Australia in February 2015. She has glaucoma, as do both her parents.

Ms Brooks is currently a Non-Executive Director of BT Investment Management and chair of the Remuneration and Nominations committee, Chair of Critical Path Inc. and a member of the Industry Advisory Board for the Faculty of Business and Economics at Macquarie University. Prior appointments include the Board of Perpetual Limited and Synergy & TaikOz Ltd.

Ms Brooks has over 30 years’ experience in the financial services industry, including extensive experience in funds management both in Australia and overseas. She held the position of Managing Director, US Institutional Investment Services at Frank Russell Company, based in New York between 2000 and 2004. Prior to that, she held a number of other senior positions at Frank Russell Company, including Managing Director, Australasia (1996–2000) and Director, European Funds (1991–1996). She is an actuary and an APMA qualified Pilates instructor.


Ms Anne Develin - Council Member 
Qualifications: B.Pharm, Grad Dip Pop Health (ANU), Coach U Core Essentials Graduate, MPS, AICD
Experience: 
Anne is a pharmacist with 30 years experience across a broad range of areas including government bodies, industry associations, hospital/community pharmacy and General Practice. She is currently working as a registered pharmacist in general practice and in community pharmacy; as a consultant and health coach on medicines and other health-related matters. Anne has experience with, and an understanding of, contemporary medicines policy and regulatory issues/processes, pharmacy practice and system-wide health care issues.


Mr Anthony (Tony) Gibson OAM - Council Member 
Qualifications: OA, MMSc Optom, LOSc, FACO
Experience: 
A Fellow of the Victorian College of Optometry, Mr Gibson is a self-employed optometrist in private practice since 1971 and is a member of the Australian College of Optometry, Optometry Australia, the National Vision Research Institute, the Contact Lens Society of Australia and the Aviation Medicine Society of Australia and New Zealand.

His appointments include: Clinical Associate & Academic Associate, Department of Optometry; Consulting Optometrist, Ophthalmology Unit, Royal Melbourne Hospital; Council member, Victorian College of Optometry; Board of Continuing Education, Victorian College of Optometry; Optometrists Registration Board of Victoria; Civil Aviation Safety Authority, Credentialed optometric eye examiner, and Member Optometry Council of Australia, Course Accreditation Committee.

Mr Gibson has a passion for continuing education for optometrists.


Mrs Alicia O’Donoghue - Council Member 
Qualifications: 
Experience: 
Alicia is a Director in EY’s Risk Advisory team. Prior to this she was a Director with PwC, and a Senior Manager with Deloitte.

With over 12 years of experience, Alicia’s focus is to support organisations in ensuring their business strategy and risk application is implemented throughout the organisation to appropriately guide informed competitive decision making.

Her international experience spans multiple industries, with a depth of expertise within the Government and Public Sector.

Alicia supplements her professional career by working across a number of not-for-profit organisations and applies her commercial acumen to support organisations in their ambitions for financial viability.

Alicia was previously a board director with Hills Office Furniture UK, a non-executive Director of the Australian Breastfeeding Association, and is currently a council member for us at Glaucoma Australia.


Dr. Simon Skalicky - Council Member 
Qualifications: FRANZCO, PhD, BSc (Med), MPhil, MMed, MBBS (Hons 1)
Experience: 
Dr Simon Skalicky is a federal Councillor and Chair of the Ophthalmology Liaison Committee for Glaucoma Australia. He is a glaucoma and cataract subspecialist with posts at the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital and Royal Melbourne Hospital. He undertook a subspeciality fellowship in the department of Ophthalmology at Cambridge University in the United Kingdom where he studied and practiced advanced glaucoma surgery at the prestigious Addenbrooke’s Glaucoma Unit. Dr Skalicky is a Clinical Senior Lecturer at the Universities of Sydney and Melbourne. He is an active clinical researcher in the field of glaucoma, particularly interested in evaluating new treatments from the perspective of the patients’ experience and their quality of life. Dr Skalicky consults privately at Eye Surgery Associates in East Melbourne, Malvern and Vermont South.


Mr Phillip Tully - Council Member 
Qualifications: BCom MBA FCA
Experience: 
Council Member Mr Tully qualified with a Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting, Finance and Systems) from UNSW and was admitted as a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia (now retired). Mr Tully also holds a Masters Degree in Business Administration from the Australian Graduate School of Management.

Mr Tully is also interested in marrying his expertise in software design and implementation with the needs of the Association.


 

Our Staff

You can contact our staff members by phone on 02 9906 6640 or by making an email enquiry here.

Geoff Pollard Geoff Pollard - National Executive Officer
Geoff Pollard has over 27 years’ experience working in the pharmaceutical industry prior to commencing as National Executive Officer, Glaucoma Australia in April 2011. He has been involved in numerous community awareness programs, has developed many patient support initiatives and is currently working to re-energise support for higher rates of glaucoma detection in Australia. Geoff has qualifications in education and management, with a particular interest in marketing.
Meegan McLeod - National Coordinator/Educator 
Youli Yu - Digital Marketing Specialist 
Kim Brady-Kells - Office Administrator


Committees

At Glaucoma Australia, our Staff and Council members are supported by skilled committees which offer expert knowledge toward Our Mission: To eliminate glaucoma blindness. These volunteer committees include:

  • Glaucoma Australia Expert Medical Panel
  • Glaucoma Australia IT Committee
  • Glaucoma Australia Ophthalmology Committee
  • Glaucoma Australia Optometry Committee
  • Glaucoma Australia Pharmacy Committee
  • Glaucoma Australia Sustainability Committee
  • Glaucoma Australia Governance Committee