About Us « Charlie Teo Foundation

OUR STORY

Prof Charlie Teo officially launched the Charlie Teo Foundation in March 2018.

Charlie Teo Foundation is different, it’s game-changing and it’s pure Charlie. Founded by a rebel with a cause, Charlie Teo Foundation is all about disruptive thinking, about funding brilliant, original minds who are not afraid to push boundaries and think well outside the box.

Charlie Teo Foundation is dedicated to funding brain cancer research with a low-cost model that’s redefining how charities operate.  

Everything we do is underpinned by our values:

  • Hope

    We bring hope to people affected by brain cancer. Hope of a better future - that we will find treatments to extend lives and eventually find a cure for brain cancer.

  • Community

    We are inspired by Charlie’s incredible community of supporters. We work hard to bring people and organisations together in the fight against brain cancer.

  • Openness

    We truly believe in openness. We know we won’t always get it right, but you’ll see the steps along our journey to making a real difference to patients and families.

CHARLIE TEO

Professor Charlie Teo AM Charlie Teo is not your typical neurosurgeon. In demand across all continents for his willingness to offer surgery to those who have been given no hope, he has appointments in Australia, the USA, India, Vietnam and Singapore.

As passionate about teaching as performing surgery, Charlie has been awarded Best Teacher awards in both the USA and Australia and devotes 3 months of his time every year instructing and doing live surgery in developing countries.

He has also established a fellowship program that attracts over 600 applicants every year and has trained and mentored neurosurgeons from many of the world’s leading universities such as Johns Hopkins, Stanford, Duke and Harvard Universities.

Prof. Teo strongly believes that a surgeon’s responsibility to his patients shouldn’t end after surgery. In keeping with his desire to find cures for recurrent brain tumours he has raised over $20 million for research. He has done this through the Cure for Life Foundation, the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation and currently the Charlie Teo Foundation.

His efforts were recognised in 2011 when he was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia, in 2012 when he was invited to give the Australia Day Address to the Nation, and then in 2013 when he was the first non-politician Australian to address the US Congress on the need for more funding for brain cancer research.

Charlie is a father to four beautiful daughters and supports the rights of girls and young women in impoverished countries such as Cambodia and India through various charities including his own Teo Family Foundation.

Board

Valentina has more than 20 years' experience as a corporate, commercial and tax lawyer, and is admitted to practice as a solicitor and barrister in Australia. Valentina is a Consultant with Sparke Helmore in their Corporate and Intellectual Property team and is Chair of their National Sports and Entertainment Law Practice. She is also the Principal of legal practice Black Book Legal. Valentina was previously General Counsel (Australia and New Zealand) for professional body Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand. Prior to this, Valentina worked for law firms Minter Ellison, Corrs and Phillips Fox. Valentina is also the Chairman of WCM Global Growth Ltd, an ASX listed company, and Managing Director of Black Book Management Pty Ltd. She is an Executive Patron of The Taronga Zoo and sits on The Australian Ballet ‘Ambassador Board’ and is a Ambassador of The Australian Ballet. Valentina holds a Bachelor Law/Arts and a Master of Laws from the University of Melbourne, where she also completed the Leadership Program (Mt Eliza/Melbourne Business School). Valentina is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAICD), a Chartered Tax Advisor (CTA) of The Tax Institute and is also a member of the Law Society of NSW and Women on Boards.

For over 30 years Prof Charlie Teo AM has been instrumental in the development, dissemination and acceptance of the concept of keyhole minimally invasive techniques in neurosurgery. Prof Teo runs a fellowship program that attracts over 600 applicants yearly and has trained many of the world’s leading figures in neurosurgery. He trains at distinguished centres such as the Barrow Neurological Institute, Johns Hopkins University, Duke University, Stanford University, Vanderbilt University and Harvard University.

He has been published in over 120 peer reviewed journals, has authored two books on keyhole approaches to brain tumours and featured as a guest editor for several journals. He is the Australian representative on the Tumour Section of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS) and CNS.

Prof Teo strongly believes that a surgeon’s responsibility to his patients shouldn’t end after surgery. In keeping with his desire to find cures for recurrent brain tumours, he has raised over $20 million that has been used to fund research scientists both in Australia and Internationally.

Prof Teo dedicates 3 months every year to pro bono work in developing countries, for which he has been recognised with awards from Rotary International. This includes the Paul Harris Fellowship for contribution to World Health. He has been a finalist in the NSW Australian of the Year awards in 2003 and 2009.

In 2011 his contribution to the development of minimally invasive neurosurgery was recognised in the Australia Day awards where he was named as a Member of the Order of Australia. In 2012, he was invited to give the Australia Day Address to the Nation and in 2013 was honoured to be the first non-politician Australian to address the US Congress on the need for more funding for brain cancer research.

Charlie is a father to four beautiful daughters and supports the rights of girls and young women in impoverished countries such as Cambodia and India through various charities including his own Teo Family Foundation. He is a Patron for Voiceless, an Australian based charity that is dedicated to reducing cruelty to industry animals.

John has had over 45 years’ experience in the aviation industry. In 2019, he retired from Virgin Australia, after nine years as Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director. Under his leadership, the Group underwent a strategic repositioning. Prior to this, John had a long career at Qantas Airways. John is a Director of Coca Cola Amatil, a member of the Art Gallery of NSW Trust, and a Director of Supercars. He has previously served as a Director of Energy Australia, the Australian Chamber Orchestra, the NSW Customer Advisory Board, Jetset Travelworld, Sydney FC, Piper Aircraft (USA), The Australian Ballet and CARE Australia.

Kerry-Anne Johnston is a true philanthropist with a giving and humanitarian heart.

She is a founding member of the Australian Red Cross Society of Women Leaders (SWL), a giving circle of women who are united in the name of humanity, supporting The Australian Red Cross programs. Kerry-Anne currently is the NSW events chair and also sits on the National Advisory Committee.

Kerry-Anne is a Goodwill Ambassador for FSHD – a form of Muscular Dystrophy founded by Bill Moss AO; a co-patron with her husband Gary of The Steve Waugh Foundation – assisting children with rare diseases; main sponsor of Operation Restore Hope (ORH), embarking on her first mission to the Philippines to assist in the recovery of underprivileged children after surgery; an advisory consultant for Be Centre – child centred play therapy; on the NSW Advisory Board the Starlight Children’s Foundation; and is also a Starbassador, a trained Volunteer Wishgranter for the past ten years and giving over half million dollars through fundraising, sponsorship and donations to Starlight.

She is presently CEO of The Bayard Foundation, a private fund helping charities in need set up through their family company Jaycar Electronics Pty Limited. Formerly Kerry-Anne worked for The Department of Education, teaching both in Australia and overseas, achieving Assistant Principal and Senior Education Officer in Mathematics. She wrote curriculum and programs to support teachers in over 90 schools. Kerry-Anne assisted in piloting an assessment in Year 7 now known as NAPLAN, assessing students in Literacy and Numeracy across Australia.

Kerry-Anne was President of the Hunters Hill Primary School Council for 4 Years assisting the school with policy updates and programs to benefit the children, parents and community.

A philanthropist, a mother to one son and stepmother to three children and a grandmother, Kerry-Anne is passionate about helping those in need and making a difference.

Matt Braid is an experienced senior executive and has held leadership roles within the sports and automotive industries, most recently as Managing Director of V8 Supercars, and previously as Managing Director of Volvo Car Australia & New Zealand. Matt holds a Masters of Business Administration. Matt has spent over six years giving his time and expertise to support our brain cancer community.

Scientific Advisory Committee

The Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC) advises the Board on brain cancer research projects for funding by the Charlie Teo Foundation.

For over 30 years Prof Charlie Teo AM has been instrumental in the development, dissemination and acceptance of the concept of keyhole minimally invasive techniques in neurosurgery. Prof Teo runs a fellowship program that attracts over 600 applicants yearly and has trained many of the world’s leading figures in neurosurgery. He trains at distinguished centres such as the Barrow Neurological Institute, Johns Hopkins University, Duke University, Stanford University, Vanderbilt University and Harvard University.

He has been published in over 120 peer reviewed journals, has authored two books on keyhole approaches to brain tumours and featured as a guest editor for several journals. He is the Australian representative on the Tumour Section of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS) and CNS.

Prof Teo strongly believes that a surgeon’s responsibility to his patients shouldn’t end after surgery. In keeping with his desire to find cures for recurrent brain tumours, he has raised over $20 million that has been used to fund research scientists both in Australia and Internationally.

Prof Teo dedicates 3 months every year to pro bono work in developing countries, for which he has been recognised with awards from Rotary International. This includes the Paul Harris Fellowship for contribution to World Health. He has been a finalist in the NSW Australian of the Year awards in 2003 and 2009.

In 2011 his contribution to the development of minimally invasive neurosurgery was recognised in the Australia Day awards where he was named as a Member of the Order of Australia. In 2012, he was invited to give the Australia Day Address to the Nation and in 2013 was honoured to be the first non-politician Australian to address the US Congress on the need for more funding for brain cancer research.

Charlie is a father to four beautiful daughters and supports the rights of girls and young women in impoverished countries such as Cambodia and India through various charities including his own Teo Family Foundation. He is a Patron for Voiceless, an Australian based charity that is dedicated to reducing cruelty to industry animals.

Prof Paul De Souza has over 20 years of experience caring for patients with cancer, especially those with brain and genitourinary cancer and has a strong interest in clinical research and trials. Prof De Souza is the Dean of Medicine at Wollongong University, a Foundation Professor of Medical Oncology at Western Sydney University, a conjoint Professor in the Faculty of Medicine, UNSW Australia, and an Honorary Professor of the NHMRC Clinical Trials Centre, University of Sydney. After completion of his medical oncology training in Sydney, Paul was appointed as a Research Associate and later, an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Virginia where he developed his clinical and research interests in cancer drug development. Paul works as a medical oncologist at Southside Cancer Care Centre, and St George Private Hospitals. He runs a research laboratory at the Ingham Institute, Liverpool, dedicated to developing new drugs for cancer patients and innovative methodologies for monitoring of cancers, as well as running many clinical trials of experimental new drugs.
Peter Fecci, MD PhD, is currently an Assistant Professor of Neurosurgery, Pathology, and Immunology at Duke University, where he also serves as the Director for the Center for Brain and Spine Metastasis, as well as the Brain Tumor Immunotherapy Program (BTIP). Peter earned his MD PhD at Duke in 2007, before pursuing his neurosurgical training at MGH. While in Boston, he continued his post-doctoral research training at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. Peter returned to Duke in 2014 to join the neurosurgical faculty. He was a recipient of the Sontag Distinguished Scientist Award in 2015 and heads an R01-funded laboratory that focuses on integrating strategies for reversing cancer-induced T cell dysfunction with current immune-based platforms. His recent work on GBM-induced T cell exhaustion and sequestration has produced high profile publications including in Nature Medicine. Clinically, as a neurosurgeon, he focuses on intrinsic brain tumors and has built one of the country’s largest centers for Laser Interstitial Thermal Therapy as a minimally invasive option for brain tumors.
Peter Nakaji, MD, is a general practice neurosurgeon who specializes in the treatment of complicated diseases of the brain and spine. His vascular practice includes the treatment of aneurysms, arteriovenous malformations, cavernous malformations, carotid artery disease, and brain and spinal tumors. He also maintains an active interest in the treatment of trigeminal neuralgia and Chiari malformation, among other conditions.

Dr Raelene Endersby was awarded her PhD in 2003 from the Harry Perkins Institute for Medical Research (under the supervision of Prof Peter Klinken AC), undertook postdoctoral training in the Neurobiology and Brain Tumor Program at St Jude Children's Research Hospital, USA (under the supervision of Dr Suzanne Baker).

She was awarded the John Lillie Childhood Cancer Fellowship in 2011 to return to Australia to establish the Brain Tumour Research Program at the Telethon Kids Institute, which she co-leads with Dr Nick Gottardo. This collaborative group of clinicians, neurosurgeons, medical physicists, and laboratory scientists uses a suite of in vivo models to understand the effects of paediatric brain tumour mutations on normal brain development and tumorigenesis.

Her team also investigates potential therapeutic targets and uses in vivo model systems to evaluate novel treatments prior to clinical trial. Dr Endersby is a member of the Telethon Kids Institute Leadership Team (the highest executive committee within the institute), is on the Scientific Advisory Committee of Telethon Kids and the Rebecca L. Cooper Foundation and is a panel member for Cancer Australia and the NHMRC.

Dr Endersby is a passionate advocate for science and actively encourages young scientists to get involved in medical research. She has mentored high school students, undergrads, Honours, Masters and PhD students in her lab, has chaired the Telethon Kids Institute Postdoctoral Council and was on the inaugural executive committee for the Australian Academy of Science Early-Mid Career Researchers Forum.

Team

Charlie Teo Foundation is committed to running a low-cost charity with a lean and dedicated team. With only 4.0 full-time equivalent employees, we are beyond grateful for the support of our dedicated volunteers who help us all year round.
Staff

Alana generously gave her time as a volunteer for 6 months to help launch the Charlie Teo Foundation. She has over 10 years’ experience as a lawyer working as a Senior Associate in a top-tier law firm, in-house with not-for-profit organisations and more recently as an executive of a tech company improving access to justice. Alana has a genuine dedication to helping charities and start-ups build good governance and for engaging the community to make a real impact by improving cancer treatments.
Alana was awarded a scholarship for the 2018 Young Leaders Forum, a global leadership development program. She is a Graduate of the AICD’s Company Directors Course and is admitted to practice in the NSW Supreme Court, Federal Court of Australia and High Court of Australia. Alana holds a Law degree with first class honours and a Communications degree in Journalism from UTS.

Nicole has over 12 years of experience working in health and medical research as both an administrator and cancer researcher. She spear-headed the establishment of a cancer biobank, the Centre for Oncology Education and Research Translation (CONCERT) Biobank, across the South Western Sydney, Illawarra/Shoalhaven and ACT local health districts. As CONCERT Biobank Manager, she provided her molecular and protein chemistry experience, as well as her expertise with human research ethics, to assist cancer researchers design, plan and submit their research studies to various human research ethics committees utilising biobank specimens. This led to the fast-tracking of 33 cancer projects, as well as 3 clinical trials. Recently, she assumed the role of Program Manager for CONCERT where she was instrumental in developing and implementing CONCERT’s strategic operational and business plans. She now joins us as our Head of Research to lead strategic initiatives and our research programs with a focus on inclusion and engagement of clinicians, researchers, community and policy makers to help deliver improved brain cancer outcomes.

Mary is an experienced marketing and fundraising professional with over 20 years of experience working both nationally and internationally. Mary joined Charlie Teo Foundation in December 2018 as the Fundraising and Events Manager and is responsible for all of the Foundations major events as well as the overall community fundraising program to ensure the Foundation has sustainable revenue to support the work of the Foundation long into the future. Mary holds a Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology), Postgrad Diploma in Marketing and Business Management, and an Executive Certificate in Events Management.

Marcella has had over 30 years’ experience in media – working with John Laws. Alan Jones, Brian Bury and John Stanley. In the US Marcella was involved in coverage of the 1983 America’s Cup and the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics.
She also worked alongside her husband the late Stan Zemanek who died from brain cancer in 2007.
In 2010 Marcella was instrumental in establishing the inaugural brain cancer action week along with Gail O’Brien and Annette Ollie. Marcella has also served on several Boards including Variety Club, Humpty Dumpty Foundation and Youth Off the Streets. Marcella is a passionate speaker for the brain cancer community and a supporter of families who have lost loved ones. Marcella has dedicated herself to sharing their stories.
Having lost her husband to brain cancer Marcella has worked tirelessly to raise awareness and funds for brain cancer research and is excited to bring her passion and experience to the Charlie Teo Foundation.
Shaunagh joined the Charlie Teo Foundation as a truly dedicated community fundraising & events volunteer, giving her time for 3 days a week for over a year. Shaunagh is passionate about the Charlie Teo Foundation’s work in brain cancer research and brings a wonderful energy to the team. Charlie brought hope to her family, successfully removing a brain tumour from her 8 year old daughter. Shaunagh shares Charlie’s dream of a world without brain cancer.
Volunteers
Ashraf is a volunteer co-ordinator of the newly established Charlie Teo Foundation Brain Tumour Bank, where he generously provides his time and expertise to coordinate the collection, processing and storage of brain tumour specimens. He has extensive experience working in brain cancer, having completed his PhD in Medicine at UNSW Sydney, establishing IDH mutant and wild type in vitro and in vivo models to characterise the biology of brain cancer. He was also instrumental in pre-clinical analyses of potential druggable targets in glioblastoma that has led to the repurposing of a medication currently used for asthma, stroke and multiple sclerosis. This work has led to the medication, Ibudilast, entering a Phase 1 trial in the US in combination with the standard chemotherapy drug temozolomide for the treatment of recurrent glioblastoma. When he is not volunteering his time to the Charlie Teo Foundation, he is a post-doctoral scientist in the Single Cell and Computational Genomics laboratory at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research working on the Charlie Teo Foundation’s collaboration with the Garvan on a world-first large scale study, with the specific role of developing computational models to understand the complexity of cellular interactions in brain cancer.

Bernadette joined the Charlie Teo Foundation in May 2018 as a volunteer admin assistant one day per week. She has a vast experience in administration. Bernadette has worked and volunteered for a number of community organisations and served on the Board of Directors of a K-12 School for 10 years. Her compassion and drive to volunteer comes from her experience with family members suffering from chronic disease.

Christine joined the Charlie Teo Foundation in November 2017 as our Volunteer Co-Ordinator. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree and a Diploma in Education from the University of New South Wales majoring in Mathematics and Information Technology. Christine has more than 30 years teaching experience with 18 years as a Head Teacher organising and managing teams. Christine volunteers her time as she understands the importance of raising funds for research as her husband is currently
Lyndall has been assisting the Board of the Charlie Teo Foundation since June 2018. She holds an Arts Law degree from the University of NSW and is currently completing a Graduate Diploma of Corporate Governance at the Governance Institute of Australia. Lyndall is passionate about improving lives through medical research and was previously CEO of the SMILE Foundation which funded research into rare childhood conditions. She was also on the Board of Research Australia. Lyndall became involved with the Foundation after Charlie diagnosed one of her daughters with a - thankfully - benign cyst. Her hope is that the blessing of a positive outcome will be shared by more families thanks to research funded by the Charlie Teo Foundation.
Mike is a volunteer Scientific Research Fellow for the Charlie Teo Foundation. After attending medical school at Columbia University in New York where he graduated at the top of his class, Mike completed his neurosurgery training at the University of California at San Francisco, one of the world’s elite brain tumour centres. He then returned to his hometown of Oklahoma, where he was the director of the brain tumour centre at the University of Oklahoma for 6 years, building the institute into one of the busiest in the U.S. Mike is a distinguished neurosurgeon, brain cancer researcher, educator and mentor as evidenced by the number of research and academic appointments held over his career. He has achieved an international reputation in his chosen discipline of Neuro-Oncology, with his expertise and technical innovations recognised in over 200 publications in the field. His current interests include artificial intelligence, big data and machine learning to understand the complex cellular connections in brain cancer. As our volunteer Scientific Research Fellow, he oversees Charlie Teo Foundation research projects relevant to these interests. He is strongly passionate about harnessing the power of technology and pipelining it to the clinic as fast as possible for the benefit of brain cancer patients. Mike believes that the 21st century is the century of the brain and he is leading the charge into the future. When he is not generously volunteering his time to the Charlie Teo Foundation, he is pioneering new methods to improve health outcomes for patients with neurological conditions.
Sarah is a final year medical student at the university of Newcastle. She has been volunteering as research coordinator for the Charlie Teo Foundation since February 2018. Sarah will graduate as a doctor next year with a special interest in neurosurgery and research surrounding brain cancer treatment. Sarah decided to volunteer for the Charlie Teo Foundation after seeing first-hand the devastating effects of brain cancer has on her patients. Sarah also has an interest in global health and has spent time volunteering in hospitals in India, Nepal and remote communities of Australia. Sarah plans to continue this work after finishing her specialist training.

Ambassadors

Ever since Alex Cullen’s father Tom was diagnosed with brain cancer in April 2016, Alex has been dedicated to helping find a cure for brain cancer. The respected journalist has been a presenter and reporter with the 7 Network since 2006 joining their flagship public affairs program Sunday Night in April 2010. Alex has interviewed some of the world’s biggest stars, and covered some of the world’s biggest news, current affairs and sporting events travelling to all corners of the globe from Vanuatu to Alaska, Vietnam to Cuba.

Alex enjoys sitting down with some of the world’s biggest stars and ‘just having a yarn’ as he calls it. Alex has been lucky enough to interview music royalty such as Lionel Richie, Stevie Nicks, Jon Bon Jovi, Andrea Bocelli, Kenny Rogers, Glen Campbell and Australia’s own Jimmy Barnes. He’s also chatted with some of the stars of the screen including the legendary Shirley Maclaine, Rowan Atkinson, Ricky Gervais, Mark Wahlberg, Jackie Chan and former supermodel Jerry Hall.

Alex has spent his career jumping between news and sport reporting and in between stories with Sunday Night, Alex fills in on weekday editions of Sunrise presenting sport and weather. Alex is also a regular blogger for the Sunday Night website and has had articles published in some of Australia’s most popular publications.

Alex was born and bred near Coonamble, NSW, and when he isn’t on the road he’s on the beach with his wife Bonnie in Sydney, at their farm in the NSW Central West, trying to keep fit and always on the lookout for the next big story.

Alex’s father lost his battle with brain cancer in February 2018 and Alex is humbled and honoured to be an ambassador for the Charlie Teo Foundation.

Chic Management – Model/Athlete

Girlfriend Magazine model search graduate Amy Pejkovic, is a world champion high jumper making it in to the number one position on the world IAAF high jump ranks.

Since being discovered at the age of 13 at the prestigious girlfriend model search, Amy has graced the cover of Glossy magazine and RUSSH magazine.

Amy has additionally appeared on the catwalks for Myer and Georgio Armani. With her striking features and athletic figure Amy has gone on to shoot campaigns for Lorna Jane, Running Bare, Country Road, Baku and Sportsgirl.

She has walked for the runway for a long list of designers at the Australia, Fashion Week’s including Alice McCall, We are Handsome and Bec and Bridge. In 2012 Amy was diagnosed with the shock of a brain tumour. After recovering from her battle she has gone on to become a proud advocate for brain cancer.

Amy remains one of Australia’s top athletes and modes in the industry.

Since 2011, Ben has hosted 2GB’s Sydney Livein 3pm-6pm slot.

His talents have been recognised with Australian Commercial Radio Awards (2014-2016) as best metropolitan talk presenter.

Ben started with Sydney’s Radio 2UE and Sky News Australia. His has worked with the Nine Network, in A Current Affair and the Today Show. He has also worked as 2UE political correspondent in the Parliament House Press.

Ben won a Walkley Award – Australia’s top award in journalism – for his coverage of the Thredbo landslide tragedy and a Raward – the top accolade in the Australian radio industry – for excellence in journalism. He became the youngest reporter in history to win a Walkley-Raward double and was honoured on Australia Day with a Young Citizen of the Year award.

Byron Webb is the host of smoothfm’s More Music Drive Show in Sydney and Melbourne.

Byron has extensive radio experience – over 20 years including hosting various shows on the Triple M network, The Drive Home on WSFM, a national Better Homes & Gardens show. He’s also been a full-time lecturer at Australian Film, Television and Radio School (AFTRS).

Chris Bath is a freelance journalist, TV & radio host, with 30 years’ experience as a reporter and newsreader. She has fronted news bulletins since she was 22; working at Radio 2UE, Prime TV Albury, NBN TV Newcastle and the Seven Network. Chris has interviewed pop stars and Prime Ministers, hosted national television coverage of tragedies and triumphs and danced to AC/DC under a mirror ball on Dancing with The Stars. At present Chris is a freelance gun for hire – helping with hosting duties for ABC TV & The Project on Network Ten, and playing with buttons at ABC Radio Sydney hosting the Evenings radio show, and acting as an MC and facilitator at big events now and then too.

Chris Smith has worked in news and current affairs on radio, print, and TV nationally and internationally for more than 35 years. He’s won several awards for reporting and broadcasting excellence. Currently, his show out rates all stations at this time of the day, while he juggles TV appearances on Channel 7’s Sunrise. He’s an active host of charity events, and for his other love The South Sydney Rabbitohs. His focus on air is breaking news, but after nearly 20 years hosting his program, he also knows how to interview the stars and entertain.

Jim Wilson is Seven News Sydney’s Sports Director. He presents sport for Sydney’s Seven News on Fridays and Saturdays as well as Seven’s Afternoon News.

A self-described “sports nut”, Jim has worked as a journalist for more than 20 years, starting as a cadet at Brisbane’s Courier Mail.

During his career as a sports journalist, Jim has covered seven Olympic Games, the British Open golf, South African and West Indian cricket tours, World Cup soccer, the NRL State of Origin series and AFL Grand Finals.

Jim has been part of the Seven Sports team since 1992, holding senior correspondent and reporter positions in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney.

Jim is a passionate supporter of charities committed to cancer research, having lost his youngest son, Sam, to brain cancer in 2010 when he was just six years old. He is an ambassador for Cancer Council NSW, the Charlie Teo Foundation and Kookaburra Kids.

“Sam was an incredible boy who deserved better but his attitude towards life and his courage defied his age and he drives me every day – his memory will live on forever,” says Jim.

Joanna Collins is a businesswoman, philanthropist and a proud Ambassador of the Charlie Teo Foundation.

“I strongly believe a cure is imminent for brain cancer with your support this will be made possible. Everyone can make a difference to make the world a better place.”

Karl Stefanovic is one of Australia’s most popular and admired television presenters.

As the co-host of Channel Nine’s breakfast show Today, with Georgie Gardner, Karl is the first person we turn to in the morning for our daily diet of news and entertainment.

Karl has over 20 years experience in television and has worked as a TV journalist in America, New Zealand and Australia. He has been at the fore­front of some major local and international news events – including the Queensland floods, Christchurch earthquake, Japanese tsunami, the Bali bombings, the terror trials in Guantanamo Bay, the funerals of Ronald Reagan, Ray Charles and Marlon Brando, the Oscars and the Golden Globes.

In 1994, Karl graduated from the Queensland University of Technology with a degree in journalism and began working for WIN Television in Rock­hampton and Cairns as a cadet reporter.

In 1996, he took up a position with TVNZ as a reporter for One Network News. In 1998, he returned to Australia with a job reporting and reading for Ten News in Brisbane. He then moved to Channel Nine as a reporter and in 2003 he was posted to Los Angeles as a correspondent. During this time Karl also worked for the CNN, America’s first all-news channel, for more than 13 months.

In 2005, he took over hosting duties for Today. Since then Karl has also become a regular reporter for Nine’s long-running current affairs program, Sixty Minutes.

In 2011 Karl won the Australian TV Week’s Gold Logie for most popular personality and the Silver Logie for the most popular presenter. In Decem­ber 2011 Karl was a crew member on racing supermaxi yacht Investec LOYAL when it won line honours in the 2011 Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race. Karl has also hosted the London Olympics for Channel 9.

With over 12 years with the Nine network, an Australia number one breakfast show and covering some of the the biggest stories in the world, Karl has built and established himself as one of Australia’s favourite TV presenters. Add to that being a proud father of three children, Karl says life is busy but enjoyable. “Working on early morning television means that I am one of the first people to inform the public about events that have happened overnight. It is a huge responsibility to make sure that we are the first team to present the information accurately and to make sure we are on top of any news story as it develops”.

“We work very hard to bring our viewers not just the latest news but to ensure that there is a variety of entertainment, information and analysis”.

Leo Sayer is a British born singer-songwriter musician and entertainer whose singing career has spanned four decades. He is now an Australian citizen and resident. Sayer launched his career in the United Kingdom in the early 1970s, and became a top singles and album act on both sides of the Atlantic in the 1970s.

Luke Mangan is a leading Australian restaurateur and chef, whose influence on the food and wine industry can be found in the air on Virgin Australia Business Class, the carriages of the Eastern Oriental Express, and at sea, on board five P&O Cruise ships.

Luke’s Australian restaurants range from fine dining to more casual fare and are renowned for his unexpected creations, which highlight his French classical training and Asian influences, paired with fresh, clean flavours.

Luke has written five best-selling cookbooks and an autobiography ‘The Making of a Chef’, has his own line of gourmet products and makes regular TV appearances.

Further testament to Luke’s excellence are the requests he has received to cook for former U.S. President Bill Clinton, Sir Richard Branson, Actor Tom Cruise and the Danish Crown Prince Frederik and Princess Mary’s wedding.

As the co-founder of Australia’s largest hospitality awards program, Appetite for Excellence, and The Inspired Series program, Luke is also extremely passionate about promoting and enabling the development of young up-and-coming chefs, waiters and restaurateurs in Australia.

Having good food, good wine and most importantly a really good time is what Luke Mangan & Company are all about and what we believe every dining experience should entail.

Marcia Hine’s career spans four decades. Marcia has released 22 albums, selling 2.6 million copies and has garnered countless chart-topping singles and multi-platinum records.

Arriving in Sydney age just 16 to star in the Australian production of ‘Hair’, Marcia was also the first black woman to star in ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’.

Australian Idol’s favourite judge for the show’s seven consecutive years. Marcia was inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame in 2007 and received the Order of Australia (AM) in 2009 for her services to the Australian Entertainment Industry as a performer, judge and mentor and to the community through a range of charitable organisations.

The face of Foxtel Smooth, Marcia is a proud Ambassador for the Charlie Teo Foundation.

Maryanne Larkin is a passionate supporter of Charlie Teo and his brave approach to surgery and brain cancer research.

Maryanne is the wife of the late Gavin Larkin OAM founder of RUOK? An organisation committed to promoting connection to prevent suicide.

In 2010 Gavin and their son Gus were both diagnosed with cancer in the space of one month. The family went on to undergo months of treatments and surgery whilst Gavin continued his work on RUOK.

In 2011 Gavin lost his battle with non-Hodgkins lymphoma. Two years later Maryanne lost their son Gus to brain cancer.

Along with Josie (17yrs) and Van (12yrs) Maryanne continues to support brain cancer research as she would love to envisage a world where no child ever has to go through what her son Gus endured.

The family story can be viewed on the ABC’s Australian Story- Beyond RUOK.

Host of weekly chat show On The Mike, Actor/Presenter Mike Goldman is best known for hosting reality TV shows like Friday Night Live, Up Late, Big Brother and many documentary series like Meerkat Manor on Animal Planet and voice of Bear Grylls documentary series on Discovery. Court-side announcer for the Sydney Kings, Commonwealth Games presenter and mad adventurist. If its climbing Mt Kilimanjaro or driving from London to Mongolia in a rubbish car for charity Mike is willing to go where others fear to tread.

Peter Overton is chief newsreader for Sydney’s 6pm edition of NINE NEWS. He has over 10 years’ experience with NINE NEWS as a reporter and regular presenter, including 60 Minutes.

His early career break was with Sydney radio station 2UE while at university later moving to Australia’s first satellite television channel, Sky Channel where he spent four years reporting and presenting.

In 2012 he won a TV WEEK Logie Award for Most Outstanding news coverage for the Queensland floods – an award shared across TODAY, ACA and News. In 2014 Peter accepted a Logie Award for the Nine News team for Most Outstanding news coverage of the Blue Mountains bushfires.

Peter serves on the Defence Reserves Support National Council, is a Co-Patron of the Mental Health Council of Australia, Patron of the Monstar Foundation (Motor Neurone Disease), Patron of the Olivia Lambert Foundation (Neuroblastoma), Co-Patron of the Peter Hughes Burn Foundation, Ambassador for the George Gregan Foundation, Ambassador for the Sydney Children’s Hospital Foundation, Ambassador for the Sony Foundation (Teenage Cancer), National Ambassador for Special Olympics Australia, Ambassador for the Australian National Literacy Foundation and Ambassador for the Charlie Teo Foundation (Brain Cancer).

Richard Wilkins is one of Australia’s most recognised faces on television. He is the entertainment editor for the Nine Network and the Today Show.

In the 2014 Queen’s Birthday Honours List, Richard was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for his significant service to the community through a range of charities.

Having made his Australian debut as a 20-year-old, Steve Smith has undergone a dramatic career transformation. Now 28 years old and over 60 Tests and 23 test centuries to his name, Smith admitted that he wasn’t ready for Test cricket when he was thrown in the deep end in 2010.

Having been sent back to domestic cricket to regain his form and confidence, Smith returned to the Test side with a bang in 2013, scoring 92 against India in Mohali to earn a late call up to Australia’s Ashes touring party where he made his debut test century posting an unbeaten 138 in the fifth Test at The Oval. He followed it up with brilliant centuries in Perth and Sydney in Australia’s Ashes sweep, before recording another hundred against South Africa.

The summer of 2014/15 was a season that Steve will never forget. He was named Australia’s vice-captain in December 2014 and Australia’s 45th Test captain, to replace the injured Michael Clarke during the final three Tests of the series against India. His series of 769 runs at average 128.17 saw him break numerous records along the way, win two man of the match awards and was named player of the series. In 2015 he was named Allan Border Medallist as the best player in Australia for the year as well as being named the Test and ODI player of the year & hit the winning runs in Australia’s World Cup victory at the MCG. He was also named ICC International Player of the Year.

In 2015 Steve was named Australia’s Captain and has gone on to break record after record along the way. In 2017/18 he captained Australia to a 4 nil victory over England to reclaim the Ashes and was named Player of the Series with an amazing batting performance that had many comparing him to the great Don Bradman. He was named Allan Border Medallist for the 2nd time as Australia’s best player for the year and the International Test Player of the Year.

Tim Webster is one of Australia’s leading broadcasters and TV Personalities with a down to earth approachable personality. For many years he filled our lounge rooms, broadcasting major sporting events including the Melbourne Cup Carnival, Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games and Australasian Golf Tour. Five years ago, Tim was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer however despite this challenge he continues on the air waves on Macquarie Sports Radio on Saturday and Sunday evenings.