Debbie Wilson (New Zealand Chair)

BappScOT, NZROT, Managing Director & Clinical Specialist, Seating To Go, New Zealand

Deb Wilson has over 30 years clinical experience working with people of all ages in the area of wheeled mobility and postural management. She is the Managing Director of Seating To Go, a leading New Zealand assessment, training and repair service. Deb was project lead for the Ministry of Health pilot of a two tiered competency pathway for occupational therapists and physiotherapists assessing people for wheeled mobility and postural management (lying and sitting) in 2009. The pilot resulted in the development of the current credentialing framework for Wheeled Mobility and Postural Management assessors. Seating To Go is the Ministry of Health approved training provider with Deb facilitating the Level 2 (Complex) workshops which form part of the competency pathway. Deb is a member of the credentialing panel for Enable New Zealand.

Bonita Sawatzky

PhD, Associate Professor, Orthopaedics, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada

Bonita Sawatzky obtained her PhD in 1998 in Applied Science in Kinesiology and subsequently became a faculty member in Orthopaedics at the University of British Columbia. She works at ICORD, a research centre dedicated to Spinal Cord Injury for both traumatic and acquired injuries. Her research focuses on studying wheelchair innovations in design and people using wheelchairs effectively. She has published over 50 articles and has given more than 100 presentations at national and international conferences. She supervises many graduate students in her lab and also teaches 1st and 2nd year medical students about the issues related to professionalism and communication skills. She served on UBC's Clinical Research Ethics Board for 8 years and is now serving on the university's Senate. Bonnie is a member of the ISS committee.

Rachael McDonald (Australian Chair)

Associate Professor Rachael McDonald is a clinical, research and teaching Health Professional with an interest in enabling people with lifelong disabilities to participate in life situations. She has worked extensively in this field, within both children’s services and adult settings, and has worked in the area of wheelchair and seating provision and evaluation for over 20 years across the UK and Australia. She supervises research (honour’s, MSc and PhD) students specialising in the care of people with complex disability, and has published widely. She previously held a joint appointment with the Department of Occupational Therapy and the Centre for Developmental Disability Health Victoria at Monash University. Her role at CDDHV included health professional education and leading research activities, however her interest in using technology as an enabler but also as a tool for collecting objective evidence was a feature of her occupational therapy research. This interest has led to her recent appointment as the Chair of the Department of Health and Medical Science at Swinburne University of Technology, where this research is developing further and she is looking forward to more in depth applications of technology to improving the experience of people who use seating and wheelchairs.

Liz Turnbull

BOT, NZROT, Team Leader, Mobility Solutions, Auckland, New Zealand

Liz Turnbull is the Team Leader for Mobility Solutions, Wheelchair and Seating service for people with complex needs in the greater Auckland region.  Liz graduated in 1997 and has worked in NZ and the UK in acute medicine and orthopaedics, neuro rehabilitation, older adults health, community rehabilitation and needs assessment.  Liz joined the Mobility Solutions team in 2005 when her keen interest in achieving great wheelchair and seating outcomes was ignited.  Since then she has worked in a clinical role and mentored and supervised staff. She has been involved in service development, working groups and professional forums with the Ministry of Health and Accessable.  She now manages the team and service on a day to day basis.  Liz is also involved in the Enable Panel for the credentialing of therapists in Wheeled Mobility and Postural Management – Level 2 and complex custom fabrication.        

Symposium Managers

We are pleased to join this team and bring you the 2017 OSS.  

Lu Budden & Dean Bradley 
Convention Management NZ Ltd
Phone: +64 4 479 4162

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