Meet The Team
Associate Professor Laura Miller is based at the Australian Catholic University in Brisbane, on Turrbal and Jagara country. Laura is an occupational therapist with over 20 years of clinical experience working with children with disabilities and their families. Laura has worked in Perth WA, London UK, and Brisbane, QLD and has also worked with organisations and families in Bhutan, Vietnam, and Timor. She is deeply committed to empowering caregivers and enabling children, families, and communities. Laura’s research interests focus on motivation, engagement, caregiver empowerment, and innovative models of service delivery.
Professor Christine Imms, from the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute and the University of Melbourne, is an occupational therapist with a specialisation in paediatric rehabilitation. With experience working in both Canada and Australia, Christine is passionate about supporting the participation of children with disabilities and their families. She strongly believes in collaborative research that involves the people who will benefit from it the most.
We are very fortunate to have Professor Peter Rosenbaum on our team, a renowned developmental paediatrician and health services researcher at CanChild, McMaster University in Canada. With over 45 years of experience, Peter brings a wealth of expertise in supporting families of children with impairments. Professor Rosenbaum’s special interests lie in exploring how services can be offered to families, promoting parent and family wellbeing.
Rose Babic is one of our incredible Parent Partners on the ENVISAGE team and has firsthand experience as a parent raising a child with a complex neurodisability. Her personal journey has inspired her to work with families to access essential support services. Rose collaborates in various peer support networks and community practice networks, providing invaluable insights and guidance.
Vicki Cavalieros, another dedicated Parent Partner, has more than 25 years of experience advocating for parents of children with disabilities. Holding an MBA and having held senior roles in Australian disability organisations, she has a deep understanding of the complexities faced by families. Vicki is passionate about empowering parents to have a voice and actively participate in their child’s care and wellbeing.
Rachel Martens, our Family Engagement Facilitator and Parent Partner from CanChild and Kids Brain Health Network, is an exceptional research engagement strategist. Rachel actively participates in multiple research projects and national committees, ensuring that the voices of families are heard and valued.
Colleen Tompkins is ENVISAGE-Families National Project Manager with a wealth of experience spanning both the engineering and health sectors. Throughout her career, she has successfully managed diverse projects, including centre fitouts for headspace and school construction initiatives. Her role as Operations Manager at a paediatric therapy centre provided her invaluable exposure to the NDIS and introduced her to a myriad of wonderful families. This experience equipped her with a comprehensive understanding of the challenges and needs within the community.
In addition to her professional expertise, Colleen brings a personal commitment to this role, as a parent with lived experience of raising a child with cerebral palsy. This unique perspective fuels her passion for making a positive impact and shaping a better world for other parents facing similar challenges. Having participated in the ENVISAGE-Families program in 2018 and contributed to Phase 1 of the Service Provider program, she has witnessed firsthand the value of the Envisage initiative. Colleen is thrilled at the prospect of continuing her journey with Envisage, leveraging her skills and experiences to contribute meaningfully to the program’s mission.
National Evaluation Manager
Elise Davis is the National Evaluation Manager for ENVISAGE Families. Elise is a public health researcher, with a background in psychology. Her research career has focused on supporting the mental health and quality of life of people with disability and their families. She has worked at Universities and in Government and non-Government organisations. Her passion is supporting carers of children with a disability. Elise cares for her 15-year-old son who has a disability.
Envisage National Training Manager
Bridget O’Connor, our ENVISAGE National Training Manager, is a postdoctoral fellow at the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute and a dedicated Paediatric Physiotherapist. With extensive clinical experience, Bridget has a deep interest in supporting families new to the experience of raising a child with a disability.
Andrea Cross, International team member
Post-Doctoral Fellow, and Assistant Professor at McMaster University
Andrea Cross, a Post-Doctoral Fellow, and Assistant Professor at McMaster University, specialises in patient and public engagement in research, online training, and implementation science. Andrea’s passion lies in involving patients and their families as partners in research and ensuring that their perspectives are integrated into the development of effective interventions.
Doctoral Student at the University of Melbourne
Kerry Britt, a doctoral student at the University of Melbourne, brings innovative perspectives and a passion for making a positive impact on the lives of children with disabilities. Kerry is investigating service provision in the disability sector and is currently completing her PhD titled ‘ENVISAGE-SP: Creating opportunities to change how service providers think, talk about and approach childhood disability’. Kerry is a physiotherapist with over 20 years of experience working with children and families in a range of setting in Australia and overseas.
National Project Officer
Jacky Lipson (she/her) is the National Project Officer for ENVISAGE and comes from Boon Wurrung Country. She is as a physiotherapist who has worked with children with disabilities and their families across Australia and the UK. Jacky is driven by the desire for a more equal and inclusive world, where all children with disabilities have equal opportunities and rights as their non-disabled peers and feels incredibly privileged to have been involved with ENVISAGE since early 2022.
International team member
Since joining McMaster University in 2005 as Research Assistant, Debbie Hughes has worked on various paediatric research projects – at McMaster’s Offord Centre for Child Studies on a transition to school study for children with special needs, on a neonatal study, and in Psychiatry in the field of child and youth mental health. Since 2019, Debbie has been pleased to be working with CanChild and Australian colleagues on the ENVISAGE Families and ENVISAGE-SP teams. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Yirrganydji and Wulgurukaba – National Community Engagement Coordinator
Rebecca is an Aboriginal woman with cultural and traditional connections to the Wulgurukaba and Yirrganydji peoples in Far North Queensland. Rebecca has a Bachelor of Education (Secondary) and works within Indigenous Higher Education at ACU in Brisbane. Rebecca is a wife and mother of three jarjums, with her neurodivergent son diagnosed with ASD at 5 years old. Rebecca is the ENVISAGE National Community Engagement Coordinator. She is passionate about assisting the ENVISAGE First Peoples Program from a parent perspective as well, providing insight to the healing and connection that can get lost when diagnosis hits the family unit.
Yithimirr/Yindjibarndi/Manbarra and South Sea Islander – Parent Partner
Jasmin is a proud Aboriginal, South Sea Islander woman with cultural and ancestral links to the Guugu Yithimirr, Kuku Yalanji, Yindjinbarndi, Nyamal people on her maternal side and the Nyawwaygi, Manbarra on her paternal side, both with strong links to the South Sea Islands. Jasmin is a single mother of two. Her son being diagnosed with Nonverbal Autism Spectrum Disorder, Level 3, Hydrocephalus and an Intellectual Impairment. She has not only lived experience as a Parent/Carer but also working experience with assisting special needs family’s access support and services through Playgroup QLD, Mytime and Playconnect services. Currently she is working part-time as a Parent Researcher with ENVISAGE First Peoples Program and Beenleigh Housing Development Company (Jinndi Mibunn) as a Community Engagement Support Officer. She is passionate about improving culturally safe services to better include the voices of First nations families that have or are living or caring for a person with a disability.
Pitta Pitta – Parent Partner
Julie is a community researcher that works and lives in the Moreton Bay/Brisbane area, Queensland. Julie was born on Turrbal Country and is a proud Pitta Pitta woman. Julie has previously worked with children with disabilities, development delays and First Nations families within the education sector. Julie has a personal understanding of this program as she has lived experience in raising 3 of her own children with different disabilities at different levels. Julie is passionate about this program, as she has experienced the lack of support provided in raising her daughter who is now 26 years old. Julie’s youngest child has a rare disease, bilateral with (Legg-calve) Perthes disease and was in a wheelchair for 3 years. He was diagnosed with PTSD, separation anxiety and vision impairment at the age of 2.5 years old. He was also later diagnosed with ADHD, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Auditory Processing Disorder, severe anxiety and sensory issues. Julie is compassionate, empathetic, and understanding towards others and is a great asset to this program. She brings a wealth of knowledge and skills to help others. Julie lives with her youngest son and they both share a passion and love for Reiki and enjoy it during their spare time.
Shelley Wood lives on Birpai Country and has a diverse career in marketing, communications and event management within Government, health, television, radio and a variety of private enterprises. Shelley also has experience in business management from running and operating her own communications business, along with a holistic health business. Shelley is passionate about people and wellbeing and in her spare time enjoys being a yoga instructor and nutrition coach.
National Administrative Officer and State Parent Peer Administrator Vic/Tas
Leonie Measom (she/her) is the National Administrative Officer and State Parent Peer Administrator VIC/TAS for ENVISAGE Families.
Leonie’s journey into the with world of peer work began when her 6-year-old-son, Ned, was diagnosed with a rare genetic syndrome at just a few weeks old.
Leonie has a deep belief in the strength and power of peer connection, and actively promotes the importance of building supportive networks for parents and caregivers of children with disability and/or developmental delays.
She recognizes that these connections play a vital role in enhancing the overall wellbeing of families facing similar circumstances.
Through her work, Leonie strives to empower parents to advocate for their children and access the resources they need to flourish and thrive.
National Parent Peer
Janice McRandal is our National Parent Peer.
Janice comes to Envisage after many years researching and teaching in the humanities, including disability studies. She has three great kids, including a five-year-old with disability. Janice is passionate about caring for carers and teaching and learning in the disability space.
National Administration Officer
Jenny is administrative support for ENVISAGE and comes to us with many years of administration experience having worked in the higher Education sector for almost 20 years.
She has worked with various community groups and volunteer programs whilst in her role as Community Engagement Officer and is excited to be supporting such a meaningful program.