National Consumer Committee Advisory Council
Young Lungs Chair: Rebecca De Barba
Rebecca De Barba is a mum of 3 and has been working in financial services and banking for 16 years. Rebecca is a parent to a daughter who has a form of child interstitial lung disease which is what led her to be involved with Young Lungs with Lung Foundation Australia. Rebecca, along with the other parents of the Young Lungs Consumer Advisory Committee are all passionate about bringing more support and resources to families with children living with Childhood Interstitial Lung Disease. With paediatric rare lung diseases, it is a hard path to walk when so much of it is unknown. Rebecca hopes to change that.
Bronchiectasis Chair: Michelle Stoneman
Michelle is a highly regarded business development and marketing leader, that can move seamlessly between the building of a marketing strategy to delivering and presenting the strategy or business plan to all stakeholders both with Corporate and not-for-profit sectors. Michelle brings a high level of passion, energy and commitment to her roles, she carries unique empathy, leadership and the highest level of professional communication qualities. Personally suffering and experiencing life first hand, living with various lung conditions and diagnosis’s, such as asthma, pneumonia, bronchiectasis, aspergillosis and tuberculosis resulting in a lung resection in 2009, Michelle was motivated to seek a way forward, assisting and educating other people living with lung disease and their families and support teams. She joined the Lung Foundation Australia as Chair of the Bronchiectasis Consumer Advisory Committee in 2020 and feels she can share her experiences and her passion to make a real difference, shedding light across a wider spread community and greater awareness.
Bronchiectasis Deputy Chair: Sharon McInerney
Sharon brings an extensive professional experience to the role of Deputy Chair of the Bronchiectasis Consumer Advisory Committee, as a nurse, midwife, and maternal and child health nurse.
Sharon, living with bronchiectasis, feels very privileged to be involved with Lung Foundation Australia and on this Committee. Sharon looks forward to being able to work together to increase both community and professional awareness of the disease, and enable earlier diagnosis, with the hope to increase understanding and support for those living everyday with lung disease.
Lung Cancer Deputy Chair: Tom Wood
In 2016, Tom’s mother Kym was unexpectedly diagnosed with lung cancer (EGFR), which was a huge shock. He soon became aware of the massive inequities that exist for lung cancer in Australia, including in services, support and research. He tried to advocate for better services, support and research by contributing to Facebook support groups, being involved in research projects and attending medical and scientific events, pushing for innovative and patient-friendly research and care. Tom hopes to use his position on the Lung Cancer Consumer Advisory Committee to advise and advocate for Lung Foundation Australia to do the most effective job of representing patients and families and influence change.
Rare Lung Disease Chair: Noni Strawbridge
Noni is passionate about patient advocacy, understanding and support. She found Lung Foundation Australia when going through her diagnostic process when she was 29, alone and afraid, and has heavily relied on the information Lung Foundation Australia provides to navigate through the complex emotions and medical terms she was bombarded with. Chairing and being a part of the Rare Lung Disease Committee is a privilege Noni does not take lightly. “I hope that as a Committee we are able to guide Lung Foundation Australia to help every person with lung disease feel a little less alone, a little more supported and a lot more informed on their ‘new normal.’”
Rare Lung Disease Deputy Chair: Bill Van Neirop
Bill welcomed the opportunity to become part of the Rare Lung Disease Consumer Advisory Committee after 5 years of trying to utilise community events to change the public’s perceptions of lung disease, and endeavouring to influence support for those impacted by chronic rare lung diseases. He sought out Lung Foundation Australia after diagnosis with IPF some 5 years ago as a partner to help guide and provide the capabilities to support community ventures, and to be a conduit to ensure any funds raised were utilised to support research and patient programs. Bill brings significant experience in respect to designing, planning, and implementing programs after too many years to count in the commercial corporate business sector. His objectives have always been to play a small part in improving the lives of people impacted with an rare lung diseases through additional specific and targeted support for both patients and the often-forgotten carers.
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