The success, management and growth of WMR is driven by a team of dedicated employees with strong skills across relevant business areas.
This team provides support services to WMR researchers, administers research projects and clinical trials, manages the operational aspects of the organisation, and raises awareness and funds to underpin the organisation’s research activities.
In addition to this permanent workforce is a diverse team of professional researchers from within the UnitingHealth Care group and collaborative partner organisations.
Chief Executive Officer
Professor David Paterson
Professor David Paterson is an Infectious Diseases Physician and Professor of Medicine at the University of Queensland Centre for Clinical Research. He is the author of more than 300 peer-reviewed publications and more than 20 book chapters. He has practiced medicine and conducted clinical research in Australia, the United States and Europe, and has given invited lectures in 30 countries. He was the AMA’s Bancroft Orator for 2013.
Chief Operations Officer
Aaron Davis is the Chief Operations Officer at Wesley Medical Research, providing strategic and operational management to the organisation. He directs and manages the organisation’s operational business functions including: finance and administration, human resources, marketing and fundraising and oversees the management of the Data Management Office, Tissue Bank and Clinical Trials Centre.
Aaron brings with him 13 years of operational and financial management experience in the Health and IT sectors. Aaron’s prior engagements include Finance and Administration Manager for Queensland Eye Hospital, a dedicated Ophthalmic hospital with 30+ Ophthalmic surgeons, and Operations Manager of Heart Care Partners, a large Queensland based cardiac services company employing 15 cardiologists. Preceding this Aaron was the Operations Manager of a London based software development company and earlier an Operations Manager in the pharmacy industry.
Aaron studied Commerce as an undergraduate majoring in Finance, Management and Leadership. Aaron’s areas of expertise lie in health management, finance and health IT.
Research Manager – Dr Kelley Foster
Kelley is the Research Manager at Wesley Medical Research, responsible for driving investigator-led research initiatives to maximise both the opportunity for, and capacity of clinicians to undertake research. Kelley manages all scientific research at the organisation, including management of the organisation’s Research Committees, budgetary and reporting oversight of all research projects and staff, and research engagement with clinicians, nurses and allied health staff.
Kelley brings to her position of Research Manager 19 years of experience in medical research. Previous roles have provided Kelley with the opportunity to work in basic research (stroke and schizophrenia) within hospital and academic environments as well as the pharmaceutical industry. Kelley’s prior positions include Research Manager at St Andrew’s Medical Institute (Brisbane), Senior Research Biologist at Merck & Co. (Philadelphia) and post-doctoral appointments at Duke University/Department of Veteran Affairs (North Carolina, USA) and the Perinatal Research Center in Brisbane.
Kelley has substantial experience in the management of clinical trials, clinical audit programs and research projects and has written successful NHMRC, US Veterans Affairs and AusHSI grant applications.
Kelley completed her PhD in pharmacokinetics at the University of Queensland and Bachelor of Science with Honours (first class) at the University of Tasmania. She also completed a Clinical Research Associate Professional Development Program in 2008.
Tissue Bank Manager – Emma Raymond
Emma completed a Bachelor of Applied Sciences, majoring in Biological Sciences from Griffith University in 2007, and worked for Sullivan and Nicolaides Pathology in the Histology Department as a Supervising Scientist. Emma joined the Wesley Medical Research in 2011 the Manager of the ABB WMR Tissue Bank, and was the organisation’s Workplace Health & Safety Manager from 2011-2014.
Emma has been a speaker and workshop presenter both nationally and internationally at scientific meetings and conferences, including the International Society for Biological and Environmental Repositories (ISBER) International Conference in 2013 and was a keynote speaker at the National Histopathology Conference in 2012. She is a keynote speaker at this year’s 2015 Australasian Skin Cancer Congress.
Emma is currently undertaking postgraduate studies, studying a Master of Business Administration (MBA) at Central Queensland University with a focus on innovation and change management.
In 2014, Emma commenced in voluntary positions as a Biobanking Operations Expert & Steering Committee Member for a National Brain Cancer Biobanking Consortium (NBCBC) and Queensland University of Technology’s steering committee for the School of Biomedical Sciences as an industry member.
Under Emma’s direction, the Tissue Bank has become the largest facility of its kind in Queensland, Australia. Biological samples and data are collected to support over 25 Australian medical research projects from all over South East Queensland. Sites include The Wesley Hospital, St Andrew’s War Memorial Hospital, Greenslopes Private Hospital, John Flynn Private Hospital and Princess Alexandra Hospital.
Within the Tissue Bank is a specific collection called Queensland’s Brain Tumour Bank, which Emma manages as well. This collection commenced in January 2015, across multiple sites both public and private.
In 2015 specific collections are set to commence nationally across multiple sites in the areas of Skin Cancer and Autism.
Clinical Trials Manager – Roberta Lusa
Roberta brings a wealth of experience in the management of clinical trials with her from her previous positions. She has worked from the industry side engaging with clinical trial units including ours, to undertake clinical trials.
She has acted as: Clinical Project Lead, Project Manager, Senior Consultant and Research Monitoring Officer. Her recent positions have been with Leo Pharma, Centres for Health Research (PAH) and Clinical Network Services. She has a broad spectrum of experience in, including but not limited to: Oncology, Haematology, Dermatology, Respiratory, Transplant, Cardiovascular, Endocrinology, Ophthalmology and Infectious Diseases. Over the years, she have successfully developed the art of learning disease states and TAs in a short period of time in order to conduct thorough feasibility studies and when new trials have been allocated to her as Project Manager.
Her clinical trials experience includes Clinical Trial Project Management, Client Liaison, TGA liaison, Training, Monitoring, Feasibility research, Budgeting, Site Evaluation & Budget Negotiation. Roberta has demonstrated successful recruitment strategies: In her latest international project (LEO) Australia recruited so well that she was asked to continue recruitment to make up for the shortfall from the USA. Her two most recent projects were implemented and completed within record time, while including sites who had never been exposed to Good Clinical Practice (GCP) guidelines nor done clinical research trials before, with the outcome of successfully reaching recruitment targets with quality data.
Clinical Data Management Manager – Angela Tapuni
Angela is the Clinical Data Manager at Wesley Medical Research, responsible for driving the Clinical Outcome Improvement Program and the Data Management Office. The objectives of this role are to apply quality monitoring of patient outcomes to ensure safety and regulatory requirements are met, along with encouraging research amongst Clinicians within UnitingCare Health.
Angela brings up to 9 years of experience in Clinical Trials Management and an additional 3 years of specialised Clinical Oncology Nursing to her position of Clinical Data Manager. Previous roles have provided Angela with the opportunity of becoming a member of the Human Research Ethics Committee over a 3 year period, whilst achieving her goal of gaining a post graduate diploma in Oncology Nursing.
Her previous role as a Clinical Trials Manager has seen her become a co-author in 10 publications across a variety of journals, combined with securing multiple research grants for Investigator and Industry Sponsored Research. Angela was selected as a finalist for the 2010 Mercy Award in the category of Clinical Services and received an outstanding award for recruitment to the Palliative Care Clinical Studies Collaborative (PaCCSC) 2014.
Since commencing at WMR, Angela has become a member of the Patient Outcome Research Committee (PORC), a sub-committee of the WMR Research Committee. The role of PORC is to ensure that small scale research projects (funding requests of <$20,000) carried out by WMR within UnitingCare hospitals are scientific in nature and are (or may prove to be) of value to UnitingCare Health. The PORC Committee assesses projects involving the systematic collection of data or information relating to outcomes within clinical practice (medical, nursing and allied health) and all support services of UnitingCare Hospitals.
Fundraising Officer – Rod Knapp
Rod joined WMR in 2008 with an extensive background in marketing, business development and relationship management gained in Melbourne, Adelaide and Brisbane.
Having worked in partnership with three large not-for-profit organisations in the health sector for more than six years, and in the corporate world for more than 20 years, Rod has helped many individuals and organisations experience the joy of philanthropy.
At WMR, Rod is involved in capital fundraising, corporate sponsorships, appeals, regular giving, bequests, memorial gifts, celebration gifts, workplace giving, online giving and donor relations. He is a Member of the Fundraising Institute of Australia and holds qualifications in marketing and journalism.