About Us

About Us

EndUCD was previously known as the Ross Dennerstein Foundation. Captain Ross Dennerstein was a fit and active family man who was regularly put through the medical tests that all commercial airline pilots are required to undertake — so when he suddenly and unexplainably died at home aged just 47, his family was left devastated.

The family of the late Jetstar captain Ross Dennerstein set up The Ross Dennerstein Foundation to honour his memory and promote research into the causes and prevention of UCD in people under 50.

Patron

Gerry Ryan OAM

Board

Andrew Hayne

Chair
Andrew Hayne
Director at Marshall White & CO

Andrew as a director of Marshall White & CO for over 26 years specialises in the selling of prestige property in Melbourne. Andrew is a director of Chain Reaction Challenge which raises money for sick children and has been actively involved with Very Special Kids for many years.

Professor Lorraine Dennerstein

Professor Lorraine Dennerstein
Emeritus Professor Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, University of Melbourne
M.B.B.S, Ph.D, D.P.M, F.R.A.N.Z.C.P, HonDMedSc

Professor Lorraine Dennerstein was appointed to a personal chair at The University of Melbourne, Australia, where she was Foundation Director of the Office for Gender and Health and Professor in the Department of Psychiatry. She established and directed the first Australian academic centre for teaching and research in women’s health and also the first inpatient mother-baby psychiatric unit in an obstetrics hospital. In recognition of her contribution to women's health she was made an Officer of the Order of Australia in 1994. She has been a consultant to the Commonwealth Secretariat (London), the World Health Organisation, the Global Commission on Women's Health (WHO) and the International Bioethics Committee of UNESCO.

Lorraine is deeply committed to ending UCD as her son Ross died at age 47 of UCD in 2016. Shortly after this tragedy, Lorraine and her daughter- in- law, Penny Dennerstein, started the Ross Dennerstein Foundation, now called EndUCD, in Ross’ memory to increase awareness and promote research into UCD so no family has to experience such a tragic loss.

Professor Tom Marwick

Professor Tom Marwick
MBBS, PhD, MPH

Tom Marwick is the Director of Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute. His education was completed at Melbourne, University of Louvain, Belgium and Harvard. His main contribution are in clinical research and research training, and has supervised about 30 research higher-degree students. He was one of the initiators of stress echocardiography, and has made contributions to the prognostic evidence underlying cardiovascular imaging.

His main research interests relate to detection of early cardiovascular disease and cost-effective application of cardiac imaging techniques for treatment. He has published over 650 papers, reviews, chapters and editorials, and is an Associate Editor at JACC and Deputy Editor at JACC-Cardiovascular Imaging.

Eric Maillard

Eric Maillard

Executive Directors

Nigel Thomson

Nigel Thomson

Nigel Thomson is an experienced businessman, with considerable previous involvement with the Not for Profit sector, with such organisations as Villa Maria, Melbourne City Mission, Brotherhood of St Laurence & the Australian Kidney Foundation. After a career in Professional Accounting Services Nigel then built a large IT services company, which currently employees over 150 people, of which he remains Chairman.

Nigel brings commercial expertise, and understands the ethos and governance issues of the Not for Profit sector. Having worked with many of Australia’s larger commercial businesses, Nigel also provides an understanding of how the Not for Profit sector must work in context of the Australian business landscape.

Susan Timbs

Susan Timbs
BCom LLB (Hons)

Susan Timbs is an experienced executive and non-executive director, with a senior legal professional services background. Sue has been active in the health and medical research sector since 2004, and was most notably involved in the establishment of the Snowdome Foundation in 2010, which has been very successful in helping blood cancer patients gain access to new, cutting-edge therapies since Snowdome formed in 2010.

She is an experienced Chair of not for profit organisations and has served as a member of audit, risk and governance committees and grants committees for a number of organisations. Sue is passionate about working with the EndUCD so that no families will lose a loved one under 50 from UCD.

Ambassador

Penny Dennerstein

Penny Dennerstein

Penny Dennerstein is an Ambassador for the EndUCD Foundation and a mother of three children in Melbourne. She has great passion for the mission to increase awareness and fund research into early diagnosis and prevention of UCD. Penny's family was dramatically impacted in 2016 when she lost her husband Ross to UCD. At the time of his death, Ross was a 47 year old fit and healthy man who led an athletic lifestyle. Shortly after this tragedy, Penny and Ross’ mother Lorraine Dennerstein started the Ross Dennerstein Foundation, now called EndUCD, in Ross’ memory to increase awareness and help fund research into UCD so no family has to experience such a tragic loss.

Board Advisory Committee members

Andrew Ranger

Andrew Ranger
Co-Founder & Chief Product Officer, Memories.net

An avid skier, global traveller, food and technology enthusiast, Andrew sits on the board and committee of Pause Fest. He served as a Director on the Board of the Australian Centre of the Moving Image (ACMI) and founded their young philanthropic arm, the ACMI Luminaries. Andrew co-founded Memories (formerly Skymorials) in 2014 to help revolutionise the way people collect the memories of their loved ones online. He was the inaugural CEO until 2020.

Rachael McKendrick

Rachael McKendrick
BFin LLB (Hons)

Rachael McKendrick is a solicitor in the Litigation Team at Robinson Gill Lawyers.

Rachael was an active member of the Deakin University Global Citizenship Program, assisting with various fundraisers and participating in a volunteer program focused on community and education in underprivileged schools in the eastern province of Sri Lanka. As a lawyer was involved in the Medevac cases, assisting refugees and asylum seekers to be transferred to Australia for urgent medical treatment.

Dr Bill Darby

Dr Bill Darby

Bill is a research scientist at CSL Innovations where he specialises in clinical assay design. Bill has been studying and working in science since 2007, he completed his PhD in biomedical research at RMIT University with a focus on chronic inflammation and vascular function. His passion for scientific research has aligned him with EndUCD and he hopes to aid the charity in ensuring no family has to face this sudden and damaging condition again.

Be part of the research

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