From our patrons to our volunteers, we are only as good as the team around us. And we think our team is exceptional. But that's just our opinion.
You be the judge.
Steve and Lynette Waugh
On his retirement from international cricket in 2004, Steve knew that he wanted to establish a charity that would support children in need, the ones who had battled against the odds and had shown courage and character in the face of adversity. Already committed and connected with philanthropic endeavours in India through his work and patronage of the Udayan children’s home in Kolkata, Steve and his wife Lynette set about establishing a charity that would support seriously ill kids in Australia, the ones that "fall between the cracks' of the Australian Health System. In 2005, the Steve Waugh Foundation was born.
In 2009, Steve & Lynette refined and narrowed their vision to support the children suffering from rare diseases, a group often referred to as the ‘orphans of the health system.’
Today, both Steve & Lynette remain intimately involved in the SWF's overall operations, including the approval of grant applications, fundraising activities and events.
Our Patrons First Xl team and their partners enabled the vision of establishing the Steve Waugh Foundation to become a reality. Their contributions, whether one off or continuing, have underpinned the success of the work we have done to date and have enabled us to plan for the future.
For this, we are truly grateful.
Sir Ron Brierley
David Coe (Late)
Bob Mansfield AO / David Shein
Bill Moss AM
Basil Sellers AM
Listed in alphabetical order.
Bob Mansfield AO, Chairman, is one of Australia's most esteemed business leaders, having held several CEO positions in some of Australia's leading companies. Bob is currently a Director of the George Gregan Foundation and Chairman, National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre.
Neil Honan is Founder and Managing Partner of Chartered Accounting firm Honan Partners, supporting clients in the retail, wholesale, medical and legal professions, sportspersons, hoteliers and high net worth individuals and investors.
Harley Medcalf is the Managing Director of Duet Entertainment and Sports and has worked in the entertainment industry for more than 40 years, producing concerts, live theatre, and major events across four continents. Based in Australia, Duet is recognised, worldwide, as a diversified Strategic Marketing, Talent Management and Event Production company.
Nick Pappas AM is the Principal of Nicholas G Pappas & Company, Lawyers, as well as the Chairman of the South Sydney Rabbitohs and, by invitation, one of four persons charged with selecting the Independent Commission for Rugby League.
Kevin Wright is a senior Financial Services Executive with over 30 years experience in both Australia and Asia. He has held several CEO and Board positions with global financial organizations Prudential and Axa. Kevin represented Australia as a wicketkeeper, playing 10 tests between 1979/80 and 85 first class games for WA and SA.
Our expert Medical Health Advisory Council (MHAC) skilfully assist us to assess each individual grant application, make informed decisions, and verify that our support will make a genuine difference to the children and families who have requested our support.
The MHAC is comprised of:
Dr Felicity Collins, Clinical Geneticist and Head, Department of Clinical Genetics, The Children’s Hospital at Westmead. Completed training in paediatrics and Clinical genetics at RACH and Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore. Over 20 years experience in diagnosis and management of genetic disorders including those presenting prenatally, in childhood, and later onset adult disorders.
Dr Tracy Dudding-Byth FRACP is a consultant Clinical Geneticist at Hunter Genetics in Newcastle, NSW, graduated with a Bachelor of Medicine from the University of Newcastle and became a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians. As a Clinical Geneticist, Tracy is involved in the clinical diagnosis and care of patients with rare genetic conditions.
Professor Elizabeth Elliott MBBS, MD, FRACP, FRCPCH, FRCP is Professor of Paediatrics and Child Health, University of Sydney; Consultant Paediatrician, The Children’s Hospital at Westmead; and a National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia Practitioner Fellow. She is Founder/Director of the Australian Paediatric Surveillance Unit (APSU), which since 1993 has facilitated research on rare childhood diseases.
A/Professor Yvonne Zurynski BAPPSC, MAPPSC, PHD is the Assistant Director of the APSU and is involved in the assessment and development of new studies in the APSU and in developing strategic links for the APSU. Yvonne has over 15 years experience in medical research.
Georgie Parker & Renee Eliades
Georgie & Renee speak from experience as Ambassadors of the Foundation, representing the work we do and our grant recipients with a passion that is driven by their own personal stories.
Georgie Parker is one of Australia’s most celebrated actors. As a teenager she was forced to wear a brace because of the spinal condition scoliosis. What she wanted most was to be a ballet dancer but her back could not handle the strains of dancing professionally.
"I was in the hospital system from a young age and when you’re in that system it’s as if you are in a different group,’’ she said. ‘’You become the kid who needs to go to hospital and it was an alienating process to be in that world.’’ Georgie has been an ambassador of the Foundation since 2008.
Renee Eliades, or "Princess Shorty’ as she likes to be known, has a very rare disease called Geleophysic Dysplasia which affects less than 1 : 1,000,000 children. This condition affects the development of bones in the body; Renee is often mistaken for a 3 year old. Renee’s condition is chronic and will become life threatening, as her lungs and heart will deteriorate over time, requiring oxygen 24 hours a day.
She may be small in stature but Renee stands tall when speaking out for equality for people affected by a rare disease.
“I agreed to be Ambassador of the Foundation because I have a rare disease and can understand how other families with children that have rare diseases and disabilities feel. I know how much help and support we all need!"
Lora Adzic, Digital Communications Manager: Lora is responsible for the online presence of the Foundation, promoting our mission and values via various digital platforms. Lora is currently completing a Bachelor of Design/Bachelor of Media double degree at UNSW.
Kara Hunt, Grants Program Manager: Kara is responsible for managing the prioritisation and allocation process for funding Grants. Kara has over 25 years experience working in the disability services sector and in the NSW Department of Family and Community Services; Ageing, Disability and Home Care managing and leading multiple program areas.
Helen Russett, Foundation Volunteer: Helen has been a Chartered Accountant for over 30 years and assists the Foundation every week in accounting, administration and events management.
Catrina Unicomb, Operations Manager: Catrina is responsible for the office management and operations of the Foundation. Catrina has over 25 years experience working in healthcare & finance and is passionate about the role of charity in our community.
Trish van Leeuwen, Marketing Manager: Trish is responsible for the marketing, fundraising and event management of the SWF and has over 25 years experience in sport and philanthropy.