Speaker Profiles

Associate Professor Michael Woodward AM, MBBS, MD, FRACP Austin Health, Heidelberg, Victoria

Associate Professor Woodward is Head of Aged Care Research including the Medical and Cognitive Research Unit and is the Head of Memory Clinic (CDAMS) at Austin Health.He is a specialist in geriatric medicine with major interests in dementia/cognitive disorders. He is extensively involved in research trials on Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders.As past Chair of the Australasian Consortium for Clinical Cognitive Research (AC4R) – now Dementia Trials Australia, he is very involved in trial organisation and in attracting trials of new dementia therapies to Australia and New Zealand. He was a member of the Board of Alzheimer’s Australia, Victoria, and is Honorary Medical Advisor to Dementia Australia.

Associate Professor Mark Yates

Mark is a consultant Geriatrician in the Grampians Region Cognitive, Dementia and Memory Service (CDAMS) at Ballarat Health Services, Interim Clinical Director of Aged Operations at Ballarat Health Services and Clinical Associate Professor at Deakin University. CDAMS is a network of memory clinics funded by the Victorian Government.

Mark is a co-author of the Dementia Pathways Tool an open access digital site to support the prevention, diagnosis, and management of dementia in primary care. He is a member of the team at Ballarat Health Services that developed the Dementia Care in Hospitals Program, which is an all of hospital education program linked to a bedside cognitive impairment alert the Cognitive Impairment Identifier. From 2015 to 2017, with grant funding from the Australian Government, the DCHP was rolled out and evaluated in four hospitals across four states and territories. It has since been taken up in the Northern Territory and Queensland. The national rollout and evaluation of the DCHP forms part of Mark’s PhD candidature at the University of NSW.

He is a past member of the Ministers Dementia Advisory Group, the National Commission for Safety and Quality in Health Care’s Cognitive Impairment Advisory Group, the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee and a past President of AMA Victoria.

Maree McCabe, Dementia Australia Chief Executive Office

Maree McCabe is the Chief Executive Officer of Dementia Australia.
A recognised leader in the health and aged care sector Maree brings extensive experience across the health, mental health and aged care sectors to her current role.
Her career accomplishments include leading the successful unification of Alzheimer’s Australia and rebranding to Dementia Australia, the development of internationally recognised technology at Alzheimer’s Australia Vic, now used nationally and internationally. Executive roles in aged care and mental health.
Maree is a member of a number of commonwealth health and aged care sector committees and Boards.
Internationally Maree is a member of the Alzheimer’s Disease International Asia Pacific Regional Committee and Chair of the Nominations Committee.

Professor Colin L Masters B Med Sci (Hons), MBBS, MD, Hon.DLitt W.Aust., FRCPath, FRCPA, FAA, FTSE, AO Laureate Professor of Dementia Research, The Florey Institute, The University of Melbourne

Colin Masters has focused his career on research in Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative diseases, including Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. His work over the last 35 years is widely acknowledged as having had a major influence on Alzheimer’s disease research world-wide, particularly the collaborative studies conducted with Konrad Beyreuther in which they discovered the proteolytic neuronal origin of the Aβ amyloid protein which causes Alzheimer’s disease. This work has led to the continued development of diagnostics and therapeutic strategies. More recently, his focus has been on describing the natural history of Alzheimer’s disease as a necessary preparatory step for therapeutic disease modification.

Professor Masters is a Laureate Professor of Dementia Research at the Florey Institute, University of Melbourne and a consultant at the Royal Melbourne Hospital. His achievements have been recognised by the receipt of many international awards.

Professor Kaarin Anstey

Professor Kaarin Anstey is an ARC Laureate Fellow in the School of Psychology at the University of New South Wales (UNSW). She is also Director of the UNSW Ageing Futures Institute, and a Senior Principal Research Scientist at Neuroscience Research Australia. Anstey also co-Directs the Australian Dementia Centre for Research Collaboration and is Chair of the International Research Network on Dementia Prevention.Anstey’s research programs focus on the causes, consequences and prevention of cognitive ageing, dementia, and common mental disorders in adulthood. She leads the PATH Through Life cohort study that has followed a population-based sample for 20 years to examine risk factors for cognitive decline and dementia. Anstey led development of the ANU-ADRI risk score for Alzheimer’s disease and is an investigator on several multi-domain dementia risk reduction trials. She led the Body Brain Life project in Primary care and is a co-investigator on the Mind Your Brain Trial, the AUArrow trials. Kaarin’s second area of research focusses on how cognitive and sensory ageing impact driving in older adults. Anstey was a member of the WHO Guideline Development Committee for the Guidelines on Risk Reduction for Cognitive Decline and Dementia and is a member of the Governance Committee of the Global Council on Brain Health.

Professor Philip Morris MMBS PhD FACh AM (RACP) FRANZCP AmBIMS

Dr Morris has medical qualifications MBBS (Hons), BSc(med) (Hons), and PhD.He is qualified in psychiatry and addiction medicine in Australia and is a Fellow of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (FRANZCP) and a Fellow of the Australasian Chapter of Addiction Medicine (FAChAM) of the RACP.He is qualified in general adult psychiatry and geriatric psychiatry in Australia and the USA and is Board Certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology (ABPN).He has a private psychiatric practice on the Gold Coast specializing in the psychiatry of older age, memory and cognitive disorders, medico-legal assessments, and addiction medicine.Dr Morris is President of the Australian and New Zealand Mental Health Association.He is a member of the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Reference Committee.He is a senior medical advisor to the Department of Veterans’ Affairs.Dr Morris is visiting professor of psychiatry at Bond University.He has held professor positions in psychiatry at the University of Melbourne and the University of Queensland.

Professor Dr Philip Scheltens, MD, PhD

Professor. dr. Philip Scheltens studied at the VU University Amsterdam, Netherlands, gaining his MD in 1984, and PhD (Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Alzheimer’s disease) in 1993. Since 2000 he is Professor of Cognitive Neurology and Director of the Alzheimer Center at Amsterdam University Medical Centers. His main clinical and research interests are Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, frontotemporal dementia, magnetic resonance imaging, PET imaging and fluid biomarkers. He is active in the field of biomarkers and clinical trials and has been the national PI for many studies, including phase 1-3 multicenter clinical trials. He founded and directs the Alzheimer Center since 2000, from which over 68 PhD theses have appeared since then. In 2013, he co-founded the Dutch national plan against dementia (Deltaplan Dementie) and serves as vice-chair of the board since then. He has authored over 950 peer reviewed publications and his H-factor is currently 103. In 2011, he was elected as member of the Royal Dutch Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) and serves as Secretary General since 2015. In 2016 he was awarded the European Grand Prix for Alzheimer’s Research.

Professor Susan Kurrle

Susan Kurrle is a geriatrician practising at Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Hospital in northern Sydney and at Batemans Bay and Moruya Hospitals in southern NSW. She is the Clinical Network Director for Rehabilitation and Aged Care in Northern Sydney Local Health District and she holds the Curran Chair in Health Care of Older People in the Faculty of Medicine and Health at the University of Sydney. Her research and practice interests centre on dementia and frailty, and she has developed memory clinics at Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Hospital and Batemans Bay Hospital, and leads a Clinical Drug Trials Centre in Dementia at Hornsby Hospital. She is also conducting research into intergenerational programs to improve care for older people in both residential care and the community.

Lesley Pugh, PN, APNA

After starting as an EN, Lesley completed a Bachelor Degree in Nursing.

After raising four children, she commenced General Practice work in 2001 in South Australia and then relocated to Melbourne where she worked as a practice nurse, constantly studying and broadening her scope of practice. Lesley’s roles have included Practice Nurse Consultant for a Medicare Local and a Telehealth Support Officer at APNA for the Nursing and Midwifery Consortia Telehealth Project. Lesley then recommenced work back in General Practice and continued her study, completing a Grad. Cert in Nursing Practice in 2017. Her role continues to include educating, motivating, mentoring and being an advocate for nurses in the primary health care setting. Lesley is currently working for APNA in the role of Professional Development Officer, Member Services, and continues to support the Building Nurse Capacity project along with the Chronic Disease Management and Healthy Aging project.

Caroline Gibson, PN

Caroline is a primary health care nurse. She has a special interest in the care of people living with dementia and their support person(s) in primary care.She would like to see the primary health care nurse in General Practice better utilised in the recognition of dementia in primary care and addressing the impact of cognitive impairment on health self-management and quality of life. Caroline led the ‘Improving dementia care in primary practice – a nurse-enhanced model of cognition care’ project at Ballarat Community Health. Prior to this she implemented a new dementia support community nurse service at Djerriwarrh Health Services. Currently she is completing a PhD (School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Newcastle) on the role of the Practice Nurse in delivering relationship centred best practice dementia care.

Professor Sharon Naismith

Professor Sharon Naismith is a Clinical Neuropsychologist, NHMRC Dementia Leadership Fellow and holds the Leonard P Ullman Chair in Psychology at the University of Sydney. She leads the Memory Clinics Initiative of the Australian Dementia Network (ADNeT) and the NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence to “Optimise Sleep in Brain Ageing and Neurodegeneration” (CogSleep CRE) and Heads the Healthy Brain Ageing Program at the University of Sydney. She is Chair of the Sydney Dementia Network, and Vice Chair of the Alzheimer’s Association International Sleep and Circadian Rhythms Professional Interest Area.

Her main interests are in dementia prevention specifically modifiable risk factors for dementia including sleep, depression, cardiovascular disease and cognitive inactivity.She has published over 300 articles in the field. The quality of her work has been recognised by a Tall Poppy Award, the Society of Mental Health Research Oration the award of 3 consecutive NHMRC fellowships and the Australian Psychological Society Distinguished Contribution to Science award.