FOR OPHTHALMOLOGISTS, BY OPHTHALMOLOGISTS
OUR DIRECTORS AND STAFF
The Australian Society of Ophthalmologists Limited is governed by Constitution. All ASO activities are
managed by our Board of Directors and appointed Chief Executive Officer.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
DR PETER SUMICH
MBBS (Hons) FRANZCO
Peter graduated with Honours from NSW University in 1990 and after residency he worked as an accredited emergency medicine registrar at Royal North Shore Hospital. He was awarded the Australian Medal in the Emergency Medicine Primary Exam.
After four years of emergency medicine he transferred to ophthalmic surgery and later graduated from Sydney Eye Hospital. In his final year he was appointed as the Professorial Senior Registrar and worked with the Sydney University Department of Ophthalmology which deals with complex eye disease.
He was awarded the Sir Norman Rose travelling scholarship and to gain further post Fellowship surgical experience he moved to England where he underwent a Corneal and Cataract Surgery Fellowship at the Bristol Eye Hospital. In recognition of his high level of training to an international standard, the Royal British College of Ophthalmology granted him dual registration as a specialist eye surgeon in both Britain and Australia.
Upon his return, Peter worked at Sydney Eye Hospital as an Associate corneal surgeon and at Westmead Hospital as a Staff Specialist where he instructed in cataract surgery. He now works in Sydney as a partner at Hunter Street Eye Specialists Parramatta.
Peter has always been involved with the issues that impact on healthcare. He is a past Chairman of the Independent Ophthalmologists Network (ION) and the current President of The Australian Society of Ophthalmologists. He also sits on the Council of Procedural Specialists. He has served on the NSW State Ophthalmic Services Committee, the AMA Hospital Services Committee and currently the Medicare Advisory Committee at RANZCO.
Peter is a member of the AMA, RANZCO and American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (ASCRS) where he was appointed to the “Council of 100” as a thought leader to provide advice on future direction of their Society.
DR ASHISH AGAR
MBBS (Syd), PhD (UNSW), FRANZCO
Ashish is a Glaucoma consultant and surgeon at the Prince of Wales and Sydney Eye Hospitals, and is a Partner with Marsden Eye Specialists in Sydney.
He is a conjoint Senior Lecturer at the University of New South Wales, engaged in clinical studies and laboratory research into Glaucoma, being awarded a PhD in this field, and was Fellowship trained in Oxford.
Ashish is engaged in medical education, from undergraduate medical, optometry and orthoptic students, to registrar training and specialist teaching. He is also involved in aid projects and educational programs in South East Asia and India.
Hailing from regional NSW, Ashish is well aware of the challenges faced in accessing specialist services in the bush. Since completing his training at Prince of Wales in 2005 he has remained committed to ensuring medical eye care is not limited by geography. He works in Far Western New South Wales with the Outback Eye Service and is the Director of the Ophthalmology Service at Broken Hill Hospital.
He is Co-Chair and New South Wales lead of the IRIS program, and is Chair of the RANZCO Indigenous Committee.
Ashish’s involvement with the ASO dates from 2009 when the Outback Eye Service was threatened by draconian cuts to public funding for Cataract surgery.
DR LAURIE SULLIVAN
Laurie is a Corneal Specialist based in Victoria.
He has public hospital teaching appointment at the Corneal Clinic at the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, where he is involved in training Ophthalmology registrars and fellows.
Laurie has been a Clinical Associate at the University of Melbourne Department of Ophthalmology and the Centre for Eye Research Australia since 1994.
He is also an Examiner for the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists and has lectured at the University of Melbourne Department of Optometry and Visual Science, as well as internationally.
A member of the RANZCO International Development Committee, Laurie helped conduct the first ever Ophthalmology fellowship examinations for Cambodia in 2009 and since then has maintained an involvement in ophthalmology training in the country.
A former Independent Ophthalmic Network (ION) board member, Laurie worked closely with ASO in the development of the Grandma’s Not Happy campaign. Laurie says he is proud to represent members and their patients in relation to both the public or private delivery of specialist ophthalmological and other related eye health services, as well as Medicare and private health insurance issues that may arise due to changes in state and/or federal government policy.
DR TOM CUNNEEN
MBBS (Hons) MMed FRANZCO
Tom is a fellowship trained ophthalmic surgeon based in Perth.
He graduated with honours from the University of Western Australia in 2003 and did his residency at Royal Perth Hospital.
Tom trained in Ophthalmic Surgery at the prestigious Sydney Eye Hospital and completed a Corneal and Refractive Surgical fellowship and subsequently an Oculoplastic fellowship in the UK.
He has published widely in the international literature and has a Master’s Degree from the University of Sydney. A Senior Clinical Lecturer at the University of Western Australia, he holds consultant positions at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital and Fremantle Hospital.
Tom is a member of the Australian New Zealand Society of Corneal Surgeons, Australian New Zealand Society of Oculoplastic Surgeons and Treasurer of the WA branch of the College of Ophthalmologists
He specialises in cataract surgery, laser eye surgery, corneal transplant and eyelid surgery.
DR PAUL ATHANASIOV
MBBS, MMed(OphthSci), MOphth, FRANZCO
Paul is a graduate of South Australia’s Adelaide University.
He undertook a post-graduate Master in Medicine (Ophthalmic Science; University of Sydney) and a Master in Ophthalmology (University of Adelaide) before completing formal specialist training in ophthalmology via South Australia and the Northern Territory.
After completion of the RANZCO requirements Paul was invited to undertake further sub-specialist training at the Royal Adelaide Hospital in the areas of Cornea and Glaucoma.
He is now a principal doctor at Eye Surgeons SA in North Adelaide where he specialises in advanced laser cataract surgery, anterior segment repair following trauma, cornea grafting, pterygium excision and glaucoma surgery.
Paul has a strong commitment to international aid and has worked with the Sight For All foundation since 2009.
He also has a keen interest in research and has been widely published in the areas of cataract, oculoplastic surgery and ocular anaesthesia.
He remains an active lecturer for medical students, ophthalmology residents, GP’s and optometrists.
Paul says his goal as an ASO Director is to be an excellent communicator between local and national bodies to ensure that RANZCO South Australia members are being heard, whilst also ensuring the ASO is listening to, learning from and supporting interstate colleagues.
DR ANDREW ATKINS
B Med Sci MBBS, FRANZCO
Andrew is an established eye surgeon in Melbourne with a special interest in cataract surgery.
It was the Federal Government’s decision to cut the Medicare rebate for cataract surgery in 2009 which prompted Andrew to become an active member of the ASO.
From 2012-2014 he served as ASO Vice President.
Andrew was a previous board member of the Independent Ophthalmic Network (ION).
Outside of his private practice work he has been involved in public hospital and medical student teaching, as well as being an examiner in pharmacology with The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists.
He has spoken at ophthalmology conferences both in Australia and abroad, as well as providing voluntary eye surgery in the South Pacific.
Andrew says he is passionate about helping to ensure the ASO exists as an organisation relevant to ophthalmologists at every stage of their career.
A/PROF ALEX HUNYOR
MB,BS (Hons), FRANZCO, FRACS
Alex is a retinal specialist with expertise in vitreoretinal surgery and macular disease. He is an Associate Professor and member of the Macular Research Group at the Save Sight Institute, University of Sydney. He is also a director of Retina Associates, a subspecialty private retinal practice in Sydney.
Alex is involved in numerous clinical trials for treatment of retinal diseases and is one of the principal investigators in the Australian Macular Hole Study and the Fight Retinal Blindness project. He is a member of the Australian and New Zealand Society of Retinal Specialists, Oceania Retina Association, American Academy of Ophthalmology, Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, and the American Society of Retina Specialists (ASRS); and serves as the Australian international delegate to the ASRS, and chair of the Medical Committee of Macular Disease Foundation Australia.
Alex served 10 years as an examiner for the RANZCO Advanced Clinical Examinations, six years as Chair of the RANZCO Medicare Advisory Committee, and is involved in teaching of local ophthalmic trainees and ophthalmologists as well as participating in education of overseas specialists through the RANZCO International Development Programme. Having been an ASO member since 2000, and former Secretary/Treasurer of ASO, he is a firm believer in supporting the activities of both the ASO and RANZCO. Given his broad involvement across ophthalmology, Alex assists ASO in maintaining strong communication and collaboration with organisations and committees working to improve access to eye care for all Australians.
DR SHISH LAL
Shish is an eye surgeon with specific interests in Cataract surgery and the management of Macular Degeneration.
He graduated from the University of Sydney in 1990 and completed his training in Ophthalmology at Sydney Eye Hospital in 1998.
Shish is a visiting medical officer at Sydney Adventist Hospital, a clinical lecturer at Sydney University, and a member of both the Australian and American Societies of Cataract & Refractive Surgery.
Shish is a partner at Hornsby Eye Specialists in New South Wales and was Secretary/Treasurer of ASO from 2011-2013.
His involvement in the ASO is to assist in ensuring that Australian ophthalmologists retain the freedom to provide excellent patient care and to continue to act as advocates for their patients.
DR NISHA SACHDEV
MB ChB, PhD, FRANZCO
Nisha is a general ophthalmologist with subspecialty interest in Paediatric Ophthalmology.
Her interest in Ophthalmology commenced during her undergraduate years, when she completed three research publications and received the AR Moodie Prize in Ophthalmology.
Nisha then relocated to Auckland where she completed a PhD thesis titled “Assessing and Correlating aspects of human cataract using Scheimpflug Photography and Wavefront Aberrometry”. Her research achieved worldwide academic recognition.
After completing her ophthalmic vocational training in New Zealand, Nisha moved to Australia to pursue further sub-speciality training in Paediatric Ophthalmology at Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital. Here Nisha was offered a VMO position at the Royal Children’s Hospital and at the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear hospital. Nisha now operates her own private practice in Sydney.
She is active in RANZCO and is the current chair of the Younger Fellows Advisory Group, an examiner for the Ophthalmic Basic Sciences, and a member of the Diversity and Inclusions Committee.
Nisha is also a visiting ophthalmologist for Vietnam Vision Project.
A passionate advocate for the delivery of business skills training for ophthalmologists, Nisha has been the key driver in expanding the scope of the annual ASO Business Skills Expo.
DR MICHAEL STEINER
MB, BS, DO (Syd), FRANZCO, FRCOphth, FAMA
Michael has more than 35 years experience in eye surgery with a particular interest in Cataract, Glaucoma and laser refractive surgery.
After graduating in Medicine from Sydney University in 1970, Michael was admitted as a Fellow of the College in 1974. Two years later he was appointed to the position of Honorary Secretary of the College.
Michael is a Foundation Member of the Australasian Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery.
He was a RANZCO Councillor for many years and served as President of the College in 1999-2000.
Michael has also served as President of AMA NSW (2010-2012) and was a Councillor of the Federal AMA (2004-2012).
In 2003 he was awarded the Australian Centenary Medal and he became a Fellow of the AMA in 2006.
Michael’s service to the field of ophthalmology has been well documented and in 2014 he was awarded RANZCO’s College Medal for eminent service by a Fellow.
He is one of the founding members of the Australian Society of Ophthalmologists and was President from 2014-2017.
DR SUNIL WARRIER
MBBS, M.MED, FRANZCO
Sunil is a graduate of South Australia’s Flinders University.
He underwent residency training in medicine and surgery at The Royal Adelaide Hospital and completed a Masters degree in Medicine before moving to Queensland to undertake specialist training in ophthalmology.
In 2013 he was awarded a Prevent Blindness Foundation scholarship to study diseases of the Retina, Glaucoma and Ocular Oncology.
Sunil also undertook specialist training in Ocular Oncology at the Liverpool
Ocular Oncology Service (NHS Centre for Excellence) in the UK.
He has a diverse city and suburban practice focused mainly on cataract surgery and glaucoma, as well as offering subspecialty services in medical retina and ocular oncology. He also provides outreach services to Longreach in Western Queensland.
Sunil is a committed teacher of medical students and trainee specialists, both in his private practice and via his public appointment at Brisbane’s Mater Hospital. He is the Director of Training for Ophthalmology in Queensland.
His involvement in the ASO began in 2015 and Sunil says he sees his role on the ASO Board as a means to connect younger fellows with their colleagues and community.
He believes it is essential for specialists to have a strong voice on how services are best provided in both city and rural settings.
Kerry is a respected medico-political adviser and government relations expert.
He has served as Chief Executive Officer of the Australia Medical Association Queensland and as Secretary General to Australian Medical Association (Federal AMA).
Among his many achievements in these roles Kerry was instrumental in developing a legislative framework for the National Registration of medical practitioners.
He also played a vital role in securing changes to Tort Law in Queensland, allowing doctors to practice without the constant threat of frivolous and vexatious litigation and guaranteeing the delivery of complex medical procedures in Queensland hospitals.
In 2008 Kerry was awarded the Australian Medical Association President’s Award for “outstanding contribution towards fostering the objectives of the AMA”.
Kerry is a recognised builder and leader of result-focused teams, with more than 30 years’ experience as a manager of successful and respected organisations, in particular within the Australian Defence Force (ADF). He has a strong track record on selecting, developing and leading innovative teams.
Kerry has been awarded an Order of Australia medal for his efforts in the ADF.
Belinda oversees the operational activities of the ASO, from our systems and processes through to representation of the Society at conferences and scientific meetings.
Her role also centres on the development of policy and submissions to communicate the Society’s position on issues affecting ophthalmologists and their patients.
Belinda brings with her a wealth of knowledge and expertise in the areas of business development and optimisation, ophthalmic practice management and policy development.
She has more than 20 years experience working in a range of roles in science and healthcare.
Belinda holds a Bachelor of Science majoring in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and a Masters of Business Administration from Swinburne University.
Sandra is responsible for managing relationships between ASO and our key partners, as well as seeking out new opportunities for the Society to build networks.
Sandra drives ASO membership and recruitment; working to deliver the value every ASO member wants to see from their membership. She thrives on opportunities to engage with members one-on-one — such as at events like the annual Business Skills Expo and the Advocacy and Practice Skills Workshop — where she says she can learn first-hand what ophthalmologists need from the Society.
Prior to her appointment at ASO Sandra was National Business Development Manager at MDA National for seven years. She has more than 20 years’ experience working in business development, account management, and senior management roles in health care and professional services across Australia.
Sarah manages communications and media for ASO.
This includes the development and dispatch of our various member communications (our monthly e-newsletter, EyeWatch and the biannual ASO Members’ Bulletin), as well as the Society’s growing social media footprint.
Sarah co-ordinates all ASO interaction with media and is always on the lookout for opportunities to highlight ophthalmology focused stories.
She is a former journalist, turned media and communications expert with a passion for the written word.
Val is in charge of the day-to-day administrative functions of the ASO.
She is also the friendly voice on the end of the phone line when our members call with enquiries or if patients and other members of the public are seeking information about ophthalmology and the ASO.