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23 Mar 2023
Leadership Academy Series | In person | 5.30pm-9.00pm

Leadership Academy Series Launch

Leadership for change – Working together for the future of cancer care

Join us for an evening of inspiration and motivation as we launch the VCCC Alliance Leadership Academy. 

The VCCC Alliance is investing in a major new initiative to educate, build, connect and recognise current and emerging leaders in cancer, to ensure the future of cancer healthcare in Victoria is in capable hands.

Join us to find out more about this exciting new leadership and learning network. Against the backdrop of the wonderful Melbourne Zoo, you'll hear from inspiring speakers and enjoy a three course dinner in the company of peers from across the cancer sector. 

Hosted By

Dr Keely Bumsted O'Brien and Prof Mei Krishnasamy

Opening words by Professor Grant McArthur


The Honourable Jaala Pulford

The path to leadership – decisions, influences and lessons along the way

The Honourable Jaala Pulford was elected to the Victorian Parliament in 2006 as Member for Western Victoria. Over the first two terms of the Andrews Government (2014-22), Jaala was the first woman to serve as Minister for Agriculture, and had ministerial responsibilities that included roads, the TAC, fishing and boating, small business, resources, employment and for innovation, medical research and the digital economy. She also served as Deputy Leader of the Government in the upper house,

Jaala steered Jobs Victoria through a critical period as the pandemic hit hard for both workers and employers alike. She led the state’s efforts to help Victoria’s 640,000 small businesses navigate and survive the impact of lockdowns. She secured both Moderna and BioNTech for Melbourne, cementing a local end-to-end mRNA vaccine capability, supply certainty, an R&D hub and significant research investment. She also set Victoria on course to be Australia’s first gigabit state through the Connecting Vic program, a billion dollar investment delivered in partnership with telecommunications providers. As Agriculture Minister she oversaw the establishment of a medicinal cannabis industry. Jaala is an experienced leader with deep experience in Cabinet government, public administration and governance, Jaala is passionate about making sure people and businesses can thrive in an economy undergoing fast-moving, often destabilising, but exciting and transformational change.

Jaala lives in Ballarat with her husband Jeff, son Hamish, two adopted greyhounds and the everlasting memory of her daughter Sinéad. Sinéad died in December 2014 at the age of 13, just 12 weeks after being diagnosed with a rare cancer.


Dr Stephen Parnis
St Vincent's Hospital Melbourne, The Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital

When the rubber hits the road – collaborative leadership and bold decisions in challenging times

Dr Stephen Parnis is a senior emergency physician at St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne, and The Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital. He graduated from the University of Melbourne in 1992, serving as Chair of the Melbourne University Student Union in 1991. He obtained Fellowship of the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine in 2007, subsequently serving on the Trainee Selection and Public Health Committees of ACEM. He was the President of AMA Victoria 2012-14, Chair of the AMA Council of Salaried Doctors 2011-14, and a member of the AMA Federal Council 2011-16. Dr Parnis was the Vice President of the Australian Medical Association 2014-16.

In late 2017, Dr Parnis led the campaign against legalised assisted suicide and euthanasia in Victoria. Since 2019, Dr Parnis has been a Board Member of the Medical Insurance Group of Australia (MIGA).

Most recently, Dr Parnis has been a prominent voice from the frontline during the Covid-19 pandemic. He continues to speak and advise on medical and health policy matters.

Dr Parnis will be speaking on collaborative leadership in challenging times as well as making bold changes when the rubber hits the road.


$120 (+GST) per person
Includes entry to the Melbourne Zoo and a delicious three-course meal.

Thursday 23 March

More info about the Leadership Academy coming soon. Watch this space.

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