Professor Paul Whelton

RD Wright Lecture
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Dr. Whelton is Show Chwan Chair of Global Public Health at Tulane University and President, World Hypertension League. A University College Cork (UCC) medical graduate, he trained in medicine and nephrology at Johns Hopkins, clinical epidemiology at the University of London (postgraduate degree) and the MRC, and prevention research at UCC (doctoral degree). He founded the Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology, and Clinical Research at Johns Hopkins; was Dean, School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine; Dean, School of Medicine; and Sr. VP for Health Sciences at Tulane; and President/CEO, Loyola University Health System/Medical Center.

His research includes BP-related cardiovascular/renal disease epidemiology, prevention, clinical trials, and global health. He chaired many NIH funded studies, including the Trials of Hypertension Prevention (TOHP 1 & 2), Trial of Nonpharmacologic Interventions in the Elderly (TONE), Antihypertensive and Lipid Lowering Treatment to Prevent Heart Attack Trial (ALLHAT), and Systolic Blood Pressure Intervention Trial (SPRINT). He chaired the 2017 ACC)/AHA BP Guideline and was a lead for the 2021 WHO BP Treatment Guideline. A recipient of two honorary degrees, he received the AHA Population Research Prize, Excellence in Hypertension Research Award, and Distinguished Scientist Award; the NKF David Hume Award; and the Irish Government St. Patrick’s Day Academic Science Award. He has published approximately 600 peer reviewed manuscripts (h-index = 142; 137,181 citations; and i10-index = 470), and 100 books, chapters, supplements, or monographs.

Professor Sophia Zoungas

Colin Johnston Lecture
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Professor Sophia Zoungas is the Academic Director of the Monash University Clinical Trials Centre, the Head of the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University, and a Professor of Diabetes, Vascular Health and Ageing. She is also a consultant Endocrinologist and Physician with clinical appointments at both Monash Health, including the Victorian Heart Hospital, and Alfred Health, Melbourne.

Professor Zoungas is internationally recognised for her expertise in the design and conduct of large multicentre, multinational clinical trials and cohort studies which have impacted directly on public health and clinical care. She has assembled international and national teams in diabetes, cardiovascular and kidney health, including investigator lead projects and large-scale community-based clinical trials.

Professor Zoungas has over 300 publications in peer-reviewed journals, including the New England Journal of Medicine, Lancet, Annals of Internal Medicine, British Medical Journal, and Nature Reviews and she is recognised as one of the most cited researcher in the field of diabetes.

Professor Paul Glasziou

Austin Doyle Lecture
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Professor Paul Glasziou, PhD, FRACGP, AO,  is Director of the Institute for Evidence-Based Healthcare at Bond University and was the Director of the Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine in Oxford from 2003-2010. His key interests include identifying and removing barriers to using high quality research in everyday clinical practice and improving the clinical impact of research by reducing the more than $85 Billion annual loss from unpublished and unusable research (Chalmers, Glasziou, Lancet 2009).  His research has influenced numerous guidelines and clinical policies and practice (cardiovascular disease management, screening, clinical monitoring, and antibiotics stewardship) and guidelines for reporting research.  He co-founded the International Society for Evidence-based Health Care and the RACGP’s Handbook of Non-Drug Interventions. He has authored over 600 peer-reviewed journal articles and 7 books related to evidence-based practice, including Evidence-Based Medical Monitoring: Principles and Practice.

Helena Popovic

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Dr Helena Popovic MBBS is a medical doctor and international speaker who shows people how toboost their brain at any age or stage of life so they can:Perform at their peak throughout their careerEliminate brain fog in menopauseAvoid Alzheimer’s and other dementias in retirement.She also provides a roadmap for living longer, stronger, healthier and happier.Dr Helena graduated from the University of Sydney and has spent over 30 years researching thebrain and teaching people how to reach their full potential. Discovering how to boost our brain isthe single most important investment we can make to achieve our goals, solve complex problemsand create a fulfilling life.Dr Helena’s philosophy is that education is more powerful than medication and she believes in growing bolder rather than older.She is the author of three best-selling books:In Search of My Father is a guide to caring for someone with dementia.Can Adventure Prevent Dementia? shows how we can all build a better brain.NeuroSlimming – Let Your Brain Change Your Body reveals how to shed excess body fat withoutdieting or deprivation.Dr Helena espouses slow ageing despite fast living and she delivers highly effective wellness andpeak performance programs to organisations of all sizes. She is one of Australia’s most popularconference opening speakers.
Colin Johnston Lecture

Josh Jones

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A father killed and a young apprentice left permanently disabled. Josh’s story gives a raw insight into the life changing effects of being involved in a catastrophic mining accident. Josh is a passionate, resilient young man that is committed to improving the safety and wellbeing of the workforce.   Starting his career in mining as an apprentice diesel fitter with Leighton Contractors in 2012, Josh’s career was cut short after an accident in 2015. After nearly 2 years of recovery, Josh took up a career in commercial real estate and is now a partner in an agency. However, Josh was motivated to make a difference in the safety and wellbeing space and started sharing his story across the mining industry in late 2022.  In his spare time, Josh turns to golf which after never having been a golfer Josh took up during his rehabilitation to help with his mental health and has since climbed the world rankings for golfers with a disability to within the top 100 in the world in 2022.

Mariette Bylsma

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Mariette Bylsma is currently serving as the BMA Head of Operations at BHP. Prior to this role, Mariette held various leadership positions at Rio Tinto from 2013 to 2021, including General Manager of Operations at Rail and Yandicoogina Mine. Mariette also has past experience at BHP, where Mariette worked from 2005 to 2012 in roles such as Manager of Business Planning at WAIO and Manager of Strategy & Planning at Nickel West. Bylsma holds a Bachelor of Engineering in Technology Management from Hanzehogeschool Groningen and also attended Tshwane University of Technology.