Welcome to People on the move – November 2023, Insight’s monthly bulletin to keep the Australian ophthalmic sector updated on new appointments and personnel changes.
If you’d like to tell the market about a new person in your company, practice, or clinic, please send the person’s name, position, image and a short description about their role to editor Myles Hume for consideration at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Elizabeth Kodari – EssilorLuxottica
The contributions of EssilorLuxottica’s Elizabeth Kodari to the field of optometry have been recognised, after recently being appointed as a Director on the Board of Optometry NSW/ACT. Kodari initially joined the board six months ago and was recently re-elected. Her journey with EssilorLuxottica in 2015 as an optometrist before taking on various roles such as managing optometrist, professional services manager, eyecare operations director, and currently serving as the State Director for NSW/ACT. “With her vast experience and expertise, we are thrilled for Elizabeth to now embark on this new role within Optometry Australia, where she can further advance the field of eyecare,” the company stated.
Michelle Phung – ZEISS
Michelle Phung has joined the ZEISS MED team as Clinical Application Specialist, Lens Extraction. She will play a leading role in supporting clinical application and training across the lens extraction portfolio. Phung completed her Bachelor of Health Science and Master of Orthoptic at La Trobe University in 2017. During this time, she worked at Bupa Optical as an optical dispenser. Since 2018, she worked at Vision Eye Institute in Chatswood as an Orthoptic Assistant Team Leader where she was responsible for assisting in cataract and refractive laser procedures and managing a fast-paced clinic.
Arissra Kayunsumrutket – ZIESS
Arissra Kayunsumrutket has joined ZEISS MED as Clinical Applications Specialist, Chronic Disease Management (CDM). Based on the Gold Coast. she will be responsible for supporting the CDM business in Queensland from a clinical applications and partnership perspective. A graduate of Griffith University in Bachelor of Biomedical Science, Kayunsumrutket has 10 years’ experience in the ophthalmic field. For the last six years she has worked for Device Technologies as Product Specialist in Ophthalmic Diagnostic where she was responsible for account management of Queensland and Northern NSW. Prior to this she worked at Queensland Eye Institute, Outlook Eye Specialists, Integrative Medical Clinics and The Vision Centre in various Ophthalmic Technicians, Medical Scribe, Scrub & Scout Nurse and Clinical Trial roles.
Dr Kris Rallah-Baker & Brandon Ah Tong – Vision 2020 Australia
The Vision 2020 Australia AGM was held on 2 November, where five vacant board director positions were filled. In addition to current directors being reappointed (The Hon Mr Christopher Pyne, Ms Jane Schuller and Mr Dale Cleaver), the organisation announced two new board appointments in Dr Kris Rallah-Baker (left) and Mr Brandon Ah Tong (right). Rallah Baker is Australia’s only Indigenous ophthalmologist, a proud Yuggera and Biri-Gubba man, and one of the founding members of the Australian Indigenous Doctors Association. Ah Tong has 20 years’ experience working in the eye health sector as an advocacy expert and is currently the Director of Policy & Advocacy with The Fred Hollows Foundation. “We would also like to give our thanks to outgoing directors whose terms have ended, Dr Jessica Gallagher, Jaki Adams and Shaun Tatipata. We appreciate their dedication to the organisation throughout their tenure and thank each of them for their commitment,” Vision 2020 Australia stated.
Dr Heather Machin – Centre for Eye Research Australia (CERA)
Dr Heather Machin is looking to future trends in eye banking as she steps into the role of leading the Lions Eye Donation Service (LEDS). She has been appointed the new Head of LEDS, following Dr Graeme Pollock who retired in August after founding the eye bank in 1991. “It’s an exciting time around the world in eye banking with lots of opportunities, and I’m looking forward to helping bring the latest practices and technology to benefit Victorian patients and researchers. Dr Pollock has built a remarkable team here at LEDS. I’m honoured to continue his amazing work, support the excellent team here at LEDS and keep collaborating with CERA and the Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital,” she said.
Dr Ben Ashby – Specsavers
In an Australian and New Zealand industry first, Specsavers has combined its optometry and dispensing functions to create a ‘Clinical Services’ team. Headed by a newly titled Clinical Services Director ANZ, Dr Ben Ashby, the move is being rolled out at Specsavers globally and will see more collaboration. “The internal move is a testament to the value and importance of dispensing professionals and their optometry peers working together to provide great patient care. Combining the strengths and successes of both Specsavers professional teams will improve the sight and lives of people across Australia and Aotearoa,” said Ashby.
Amy Kenefeck – Specsavers
As part of the new ‘Clinical Services’ structure at Specsavers, Ms Amy Kenefeck will be taking on the newly created role of Head of Dispensing Advancement for Specsavers ANZ. She will be leading Specsavers’ dispensing strategy, driving continuous improvement and customer experience through to enhancing the quality and consistency of dispensing capabilities within the store network. “Specsavers has led the charge and brought about so many transformations to the industry that have changed lives through better sight. Now that dispensing and optometry is united, I’m ready to elevate our professions even further,” Kenefeck said.
Rhys Nunn – Optometrist Warehouse
Mr Rhys Nunn has recently joined Optometrist Warehouse as the Head of Store Operations. A former Specsavers store partner, he sold up in 2022 and is now in his current role where he has broad responsibility overseeing day-to-day operations that impact the customer experience. This includes recruitment of clinical and retail teams, negotiating with wholesalers, and building relationships with the pharmacists and their teams to refine the processes around our the network’s new offering.
Charis McKerrell – ZEISS
ZEISS ANZ has appointed Ms Charis McKerrell as the Product Specialist for Surgical Ophthalmology in Queensland. She brings established background in nursing – including scrub nurse and acting director of nursing positions – which has enabled her to develop an understanding of optimising patient care and the vital role medical devices play in achieving successful outcomes. McKerrell will have primary responsibilities for developing education and sales of the ZEISS intraocular lens, viscoelastic and phacoemulsification portfolios in the Brisbane South to Lismore territory.