Take a look below for a list of our inspiring and informative speakers joining us for RMA20. Watch this space... We look forward to announcing new speakers as they come on board.
RADM Sarah Sharkey, RAN CSC
Surgeon General Australian Defence Force (MBBS, MBA, MPP, AFRACMA)
RADM Sarah Sharkey has served as a Medical Officer in the Royal Australian Navy for more than 25 years. Sarah began her service under sponsorship while an undergraduate medical student at the University of Queensland; and has enjoyed a range of postings both at sea and ashore with her clinical background being mainly in submarine and diving medicine. In her more recent career, Sarah has served at the Director General level in Joint Health Command, and as the Head of the Navy Health Community. Sarah has a Bachelors of Medicine and Surgery, Masters in Business Administration, and a Masters in Politics and Policy. She is a Fellow of the Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies, an Associate Fellow of the Royal Australian College of Medical Administrators, and is a graduate of the Advanced Management Program at the Harvard Business School. Sarah is a recipient of the Australian Defence Medal, Australian Service medal with Solomon Islands Clasp, and the Defence Long Service Medal. She was awarded a Chief of Army Commendation in 2001, and a Conspicuous Service Cross in the 2014 Queens Birthday Honours. Sarah was appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia in 2020 Queens Birthday Honours List. Sarah is married to Frank and together their biggest achievement is being the proud parents of Samuel, Bridget, Patrick and Daniel.
Dr Norman Swan (Master of Ceremonies)
Dr Norman Swan hosts The Health Report on the ABC’s Radio National, which is the world’s longest running health programme in the English speaking world. Norman has won many awards for his work including Australia’s top prize for journalism, the Gold Walkley. He was the third person to be awarded the prestigious medal of the Australian Academy of Science and was given an honorary MD by the University of Sydney on its 150th anniversary. Norman trained in medicine in Scotland and paediatrics in London and Sydney before joining the ABC and has hosted many other programmes on radio and television. He has made several Four Corners, the most recent being on out of pocket expenses in health care. Norman was the medical host on Channel Ten’s Biggest Loser for six seasons and created, wrote and narrated Invisible Enemies, a four part series on disease and civilisation for Channel 4 UK and broadcast in 27 countries. He has consulted to the World Health Organisation and co chaired a global meeting of health ministers in Bamako West Africa focused on evidence based policy and priorities in health research. He has been the Australian correspondent for both the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) and the British Medical Journal (BMJ). Norman is also co-founder of Tonic Health Media, an integrated health television channel and production company which has over 15 million viewers per month.
Anna Rose is an author and campaigner who has worked for over two decades to help Australia make progress on climate change. She's a Director of Farmers for Climate Action, a Governor of WWF-Australia, author of the book Madlands: A Journey to Change the Mind of a Climate Sceptic and co-starred in the ABC documentary I Can Change Your Mind on Climate Change. Anna is a Churchill Fellow, a former Myer Foundation Innovation Fellow, an Associate at Melbourne University Sustainable Society Institute and a Visiting Fellow at the ANU Climate Change Centre. She is an advisor to the Jewish Climate Network, an advisory board member of the University of Queensland’s Global Change Institute and The Australian Geographic Society, and a former Director of Solar Citizens, Green Music Australia and the Aussie Farmers Foundation. She is a former Australian Geographic Society Conservationist of the Year, was a finalist in the Australian of the Year Awards, and is the recipient of the Sierra Club's Earthcare Award for International Environmental Protection. Anna co-founded the Australian Youth Climate Coalition and was head of Earth Hour for WWF-Australia. She was recently named one of the Australian Financial Review/ Westpac’s 100 Women of Influence for 2019.
Richard Colbran has held senior executive roles in health and social services charity organisations for close to 20 years. He is currently Chief Executive Officer of NSW Rural Doctors Network. He is an experienced senior executive of State and National non-profit organisations. Richard is a strong advocate for social leadership and has a professional interest in building contemporary business practices of NFPs to enhance the sector’s impact and benefit for communities. He has a commercial background in strategy, partnerships and program management and values multi-agency and community collaboration that brings together strengths and competency of each partner for mutual benefit. Prior to RDN, Richard was Business Director at Royal Far West and played lead roles the charity’s 90th birthday celebrations, the establishment of RFW’s National Paediatric Telecare Services and development of the $35 million Centre for Child Health and Learning on RFW’s iconic Manly beachfront site. He also served as National Commercial Director of the Australian Drug Foundation and led significant programs such as Good Sports (NSW) and the Australian Defence Force Alcohol Management Strategy.
Victor Steffensen is an Indigenous writer, film-maker, musician and consultant applying traditional knowledge values in a contemporary context through creative, practical and artistic projects. He is a descendant of the Tagalaka people from the Gulf Country of North Queensland. Much of his work over the past twenty seven years has been based on the arts, film making, and reviving traditional knowledge values - particularly Aboriginal fire management, through mentoring and leadership, on-ground training with Aboriginal communities and across all categories of Australians. He is the Co -founder of the National Indigenous Fire Workshops which has so far been hosted in Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. Victor has recently published a book called Fire Country which has been a major reference to his work.
Dr Robert Glasser
Dr Robert Glasser is a Visiting Fellow at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI). He was previously the United Nations Special Representative of the Secretary General for Disaster Risk Reduction and a member of the Secretary General’s Senior Management Group and the Deputy Secretary General’s Climate Principals Group.Dr Glasser has over 30 years of experience as a practitioner, advocate and policy-maker in the areas of climate change, sustainable development and disaster response. Before joining the U.N., he was the Secretary General of CARE International, one of the world’s largest non-governmental humanitarian organisations, with over 10,000 staff active in some 80 countries. From 2003-2007, Dr Glasser was the Chief Executive of CARE Australia. Prior to joining CARE, he was Assistant Director General at the Australian Government aid agency (AusAID) where his responsibilities ranged from South East Asia programs, to Corporate Policy and Infrastructure and Environment.Dr Glasser is on the board of WaterAid Australia, the Queensland Reconstruction Authority, and the Climate Action Network Australia. He was previously a board member of the Global Call for Climate Action (GCCA), a global alliance of more than 450 national and international organisations focusing on climate change advocacy. He was also an Advisory Panel member of the Climate Vulnerability Monitor, a member of the Principals Steering Group of the United Nations Transformative Agenda for Humanitarian Action; and a member of the Project Steering Group for the World Economic Forum project on The Future Role of Civil Society. An Australian national, he has published on several topics, including climate change and disaster risk, peace and conflict, and humanitarian and development policy.