Speakers and Facilitators

At AMSA RHS 18, we have a spectacular line-up of thought-provoking speakers, facilitators and panelists, ensuring you get the most out of your RHS experience!

Emeritus Professor Paul Worley

Emeritus Professor Paul was appointed as Australia’s first National Rural Health Commissioner on 11 November 2017. Professor Worley has had a distinguished career in rural health, both as a practitioner and an academic.

He studied medicine at the University of Adelaide, graduating in 1984 and has worked as a Rural Generalist in rural South Australia. As Dean of Medicine at Flinders University, he established Rural Clinical Schools and University Departments of Rural Health in both South Australia and the Northern Territory.

As a leading figure internationally Professor Worley is passionate about quality, equity and fairness for all, especially the underserved. Australia’s rural and remote communities and the health professionals who serve them.

Dr Toombs is a Senior Research Fellow (indigenous health) at the School of Medicine, University of Queensland, Adjunct Professor, School of Medicine, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia and associate Professor Menzies School of Health Research.

Recognised internationally for her work in Indigenous health research devoted to improving mental health and wellbeing.  Dr Toombs has been awarded a 2011 Churchill Fellowship, an NHMRC Early Career Fellowship (2012) and is Lead Chief Investigator on 3 NHMRC Projects.

Dr Toombs is the co-author of ‘Indigenous Australians and Health’ published by Oxford Press in 2013.

Dr Maree Toombs
Dr Randall Greenberg

Dr Greenberg completed his medical training at the University of Newcastle, NSW and has worked in the Northern Territory and the UK.

Having worked as a Rural Generalist GP (anaesthetics and operative obstetrics) in Bourke and Milton-Ulladulla, Dr Greenberg then trained as an Emergency Physician. He has worked in retrieval medicine on rescue helicopters in Sydney for several years as well as with RFDS in Dubbo.

Dr Greenberg is currently the Chief Medical Officer of RFDS NSW, an Associate Professor at Sydney University, School of Rural Health Dubbo and State Retrieval Consultant with NSW Ambulance.

Dr Amanda Cohn (BA BMed MD) is the current Deputy Mayor of Albury, and at 26 was the youngest person ever elected to the role. She chairs the Albury-Wodonga Family and Domestic Violence Committee and is a director of Parklands Albury-Wodonga.

She currently works part-time in ED and has nearly finished a combined MIPH / MPH (Epidemiology), with 3 peer-reviewed publications in public health.

She also stood in the 2016 federal election for the Greens against the health minister.  She believes that doctors have a unique and underutilised opportunity to influence public discourse.

Dr Amanda Cohn
Dr Sarah Wenham

Dr Sarah Wenham is the first Specialist Palliative Care Physician employed by the Far West Local Health District, which serves the 32,000 people that live in Far West New South Wales, a geographical area the size of England and Scotland combined!

Originally from, and having completed her entire medical training in the UK, Sarah and her husband (who is a GP), and their daughter moved to the Australian outback in 2012. Sarah is passionate about providing high-quality patient-centred palliative and end of life care in all care settings.

Jacquie joined the National Centre for Farmer Health (NCFH) in 2012 as Researcher and lecturer in Rural Health after completing her Doctorate in Agriculture in 2009.

Jacquie has a passion for Agriculture, & education and has jumped at the chance to combine the two with farmer health at NCFH. Jacquies research interests include Cholinesterase monitoring in farmers exposed to organophosphate chemicals, farm safety culture and children on farms.

Dr Jacquie Cotton
Anne Carey and Dr Donald Holwarth

Anne Carey has worked extensively with refugees and disadvantaged societies after studying nursing and midwifery, and completing a Master’s in Public Health and Tropical Medicine.  She has worked in rural clinics in PNG, with the Red Cross in Sudan and Sierra Leone throughout Ebola epidemic and recovery phase.  Anne’s commitment has been recognised with the Pride of Australia Care and Compassion Award 2015, WA Australian of the year 2016 and recently Florence Nightingale Medal Recipient for 2017.


Dr Howarth completed his medical training in Sydney before working in Broken Hill as a rural GP where he raised awareness of childhood lead exposure. For the last 20 years he has worked as a GP anaesthesist and medical educator in Esperance, and was recognised with a Rural Health West award (2013). Concerned about workplace culture in the health workforce, Dr Howarth withdrew his services from the WA Health Dept following administrative mistreatment of long serving staff.


Currently, Anne and Donald work in Esperance and channel their energies to raise awareness about workplace culture in the health workforce, unkind treatment of refugees and helping people make a difference in our world through the Courage to be Kind.

Professor Jennifer May (AM) is the Director of the University of Newcastle Department of Rural Health (UONDRH) which involves teaching, research and education evaluation.

She works as a GP at Peel Health Care, a not-for-profit general practice in Tamworth, NSW and is a GP supervisor for registrars. She holds fellowships of both RACGP and ACRRM, and is currently the RDAA representative on the National Rural Alliance and was Chair of the Alliance from 2008 - 2011. Jenny was named Telstra RDAA Rural Doctor of the Year in 2014 and the University of Newcastle Alumni award for regional leadership in 2017.

Professor Jenny May
Dr Jonathon DaSilva

Dr DaSilva (MBBS, FRACGP) moved from Canada to Australia in 2008 and studied medicine in Queensland. Graduating in 2011, he has worked in hospitals in both Queensland and Victoria, finally settling in Albury / Wodonga.

He completed his GP training in October 2017. Jonathan has a range of interests including adolescent mental health and sexual health.

Dr Leah Dunne graduated from Melbourne University with an MBBS and BSci(Hons). She currently works as a GP Obstetrician in Wodonga, having completed her training within the area.

Leah has particular areas of clinical interest in Aboriginal Health, Women's Health and Children's Health. In her spare time Leah enjoys gardening and hiking; making the most of living in our fantastic region of NE Victoria.

Dr Leah Dunne
Dr David Townsend

Dr David Townsend was a branding and marketing consultant, multimedia designer and photographer who undertook a career change into Medicine.

Dr Townsend now uses his media and marketing skills to advocate for the effective use of social media in healthcare and working towards a future as a rural Psychiatrist.

Dr Marion Reeves is a self-described old-fashioned country doc managing to live and work in a new fashioned country world.

Born and raised in Coleambally (NSW), Dr Reeves completed her medical degree at University of Newcastle and post-graduate training at John Hunter Hospital primarily in Obstetrics, Paediatrics, Emergency Medicine and Palliative Care.

Dr Reeves has worked as a GP VMO in Griffith for the past 23 years in addition to teaching at the University of Wollongong and GP Synergy.

Dr Marion Reeves
Dr Catherine Orr

Dr Catherine Orr completed her MBBS (Hons) at Monash University and Masters in Public Health at Sydney University.

Since then she has worked as a rural GP across Australia. In 2015 she became Medical Director of Gateway Health Wodonga in 2015, and has overseen the development of the Multicultural Clinic and Clinic 35 which is sexual health clinic for young people in Albury-Wodonga.

Gateway Health medical clinic has had several research publications and presents regularly at conferences in the areas of HIV, refugee health and medical terminations

Marie Kelly has worked as a rural and remote health professional for almost 40 years.

She is currently the Far West Local Health District’s Rural Adversity Mental Health Program coordinator and has post graduate nursing qualifications in mental health, emergency nursing, midwifery, sexual health and health service management.

Marie’s work is focused on raising awareness about mental health, as well as reducing the stigma around mental health, building resilience in remote communities and connecting people to services.

Recently, Marie has worked with Stephanie Dale from The Write Road, organising and facilitating writing workshops throughout far west NSW.

Marie Kelly
Dr John Cooper

Dr Cooper is a Consultant Psychiatrist who has worked in various clinical settings, both hospital-based and in the community, specialising in the assessment and treatment of patients with posttraumatic mental health problems.

His work with Phoenix Australia at the University of Melbourne involves providing advice and support to the Commonwealth Government and other key stakeholders including the general community by working towards treatment deliveries and accreditation in posttraumatic mental health, NGO mental health training and education. Dr Cooper currently leads a Youth Mental Health team in Bendigo after previously working with the Psychological Trauma Recovery Service at Austin Health.

Dr Kimberley Ivory (MBBS, MPH, BMedSc, DRANZCOG) is currently a senior lecturer at the University of Sydney.

Originally a rural GP, Dr Ivory has worked extensively in sexual and reproductive health, having previously being the Senior Medical Officer, Family Planning Victoria. She now researches and teaches on the health impacts of cultural diversity, stigma and discrimination, especially with regard to minority populations.

She spent 2017 as Health Advisor to the LGBT Centre Mongolia as an Australian Volunteer for International Development, a program of the Australian Government, to build the capacity of Mongolian healthcare providers to work effectively with minority populations.

Dr Kimberley Ivory and Lauren Taylor
Dr Jonathon Ho

Jonathan is a general practitioner currently working in aboriginal health in Wagga Wagga. His experience working with this community has helped him to appreciate the interplay of pain and mental health, complexities of pain and trauma, and drug-seeking behaviour with chronic pain.

He's committed to the provision of evidence-based pain care, in an empathetic and approachable way. In the course of his career, he's done pain research at Sydney University, and had an elite career at the NSW Institute of Sport. Now, he enjoys road cycling in Wagga Wagga.

Bernadette is a psychologist passionate about the application of psychological theory, including motivation and behaviour therapy to help people living with persisting pain.

The human suffering that the experience of chronic pain brings, including withdrawal and isolation from community, inspired her passion to improve pain outcomes in my area. She grounds her therapeutic relationships on the principle of empowering people in their own recovery, with a good toolbox of information and strategies. Bernadette is an avid runner, having run a few ultra-marathons, which also sparked her interest in a better understanding of the individuality of the pain experience.

Dr Bernadete Hertley
Dr Chris Ryan

Dr Ryan developed a distributed, consumer-centric telehealth framework used in many large scale and successfully telehealth program. In 1998 Dr Ryan founded Telehealth Victoria, a NGO which provided the principle telehealth model for Victoria.

That year he also founded Global Telehealth Pty Ltd (now Attend Anywhere Pty Ltd) to address barriers to adoption of video conferencing in health. Dr Ryan currently works with governments and large health care organisations helping them add 'business as usual' video call access to their existing service offerings.

Peta Rutherford grew up in Wodonga, Victoria and commenced work for QLD Health in 2004 after 10 years at Medicare.

Peta was the original project officer on the Rural Generalist Pathway initiative in 2005/6.

Peta is the current CEO of Rural Doctors Association Australia and is committed to supporting a work environment which values education and training for the clinicians, increases the delivery of clinical services locally and developing sustainable workforce and service models.

Mrs Peta Rutherford
Dr Philip Steele

After graduating from Melbourne University in 1977 Dr Steele moved with his wife to Albury for his intern year at Albury Base Hospital. This was followed by 3 years in the UK where he trained in Obstetrics and Paediatrics. He returned with his family to Albury Wodonga in 1982 and joined the Hume Clinic.

In 1988 Phillip was part of the group that established Federation Clinic. His special interests include Obstetrics, acupuncture and the medical education of GP Registrars.

Sept 28-30, 2018
Albury Entertainment Centre

Albury, NSW


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