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Saving sight. Changing lives.

Our Board

Affiliated with the University of MelbourneUniversity of Melbourne Logo

Peter Nankivell

Mr Peter Nankivell

B Comm, LLB (Melb), LLM (London) (Chair)

Peter Nankivell is a Consultant and former Chair of Partners of Thomson Geer. Peter has been involved with CERA since 2001 and a Director since 2006. He is also the Chair of Trustees, Eye Research Australia Foundation and Ansell Ophthalmology Foundation.

Malcolm Brown

Dr Malcolm Brown


(Director nominated by the Royal Victorian Eye & Ear Hospital)

Malcolm Brown is an occupational physician in private practice and has many years’ corporate experience, working primarily in the oil and gas and mining industries in Australia, the Middle East and Europe. He has served on government expert committees, mainly on environmental health matters and is also an adjunct lecturer at the School of Public Health and Preventative Medicine at Monash University.

CERA board member - Christine Edwards

Ms Christine Edwards

Ba. Soc. Sc., Post Grad. Cert. Public Sector Management, M. Health Admin

Christine has extensive experience in the health, community and philanthropic sectors in Western Australia, Tasmania and Victoria. Christine has been the CEO of two hospitals in Victoria, leading the delivery of aged and palliative care services. Christine is currently a consultant in philanthropy, and most recently was the Chief Executive Officer of The Myer Foundation and Sidney Myer Fund. Christine holds a number of Directorship and Advisory positions, and provides strategic philanthropic advice to community-based organisations.

Mr Andrew Cowlishaw

Mr Andrew Cowlishaw

B.Comm (Accounting and Finance), CA (Chair of Finance and Risk, Treasurer)

Andrew Cowlishaw is an experienced finance executive, with 18 years experience across corporate finance, strategy and operations.  He is a Partner of Ernst & Young, where he leads the Melbourne Mergers & Acquisitions practice group.  Andrew focuses on the healthcare, education and financial sponsors industry sectors.  He has been a non executive director of numerous private high growth companies and has worked extensively with management teams and boards in setting strategies and driving operational improvements.

Jonathan Crowston

Professor Jonathan Crowston


Jonathan Crowston is the Managing Director of the Centre for Eye Research Australia (CERA). He has concurrently been appointed as the Ringland Anderson Professor of Ophthalmology at the University of Melbourne, the oldest and most prestigious ophthalmology chair in Australia.

A glaucoma specialist with science and medical qualifications, Jonathan Crowston trained in ophthalmology at Moorfields Eye Hospital. He came to Melbourne in 2006 from UC San Diego to establish the basic science program at CERA and the head the University Department of Ophthalmology.

Olivia Hilton

Ms Olivia Hilton

Olivia a current Partner at Social Ventures Australia (SVA) Consulting. Olivia has deep experience supporting organisations who are driving social change on issues of strategy, measurement and evaluation and governance. Olivia is a former CEO of an Australian publicly listed communications company, where she devised, led and managed the companys strategy and day to day operations, including a staff of 100 employees in five countries. She has extensive experience in strategy development, implementation, communications and operations.


Peter Larsen

Mr Peter Larsen

BSc (Optometry)

Peter Larsen is a Director of Professional Services, Specsavers Australia and New Zealand and Dermox Pty Ltd. After graduating with a Bachelor of Optometry from the University of Melbourne in 1987 he spent time in England working in a variety of optometry practices, returning to Australia 1993. Since 1995, Peter has successfully developed a number of businesses within the ophthalmic industry.

At the start of 2007, Peter left his role as Optovision Managing Director to become Managing Director for Specsavers Australia.

Geoff McColl

Professor Geoff McColl


Geoff McColl is Professor of Medical Education and Training and Director of the Medical Education Unit in the Melbourne Medical School. Prof McColl was appointed Head of the Melbourne Medical School at the beginning of 2015. He has previously held the positions of Associate Dean (Academic) in the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences and Clinical Dean of the Royal Melbourne Hospital/Western Hospital Clinical School. Professor McColl’s current research interests are related to the teaching and assessment of diagnostic reasoning skills in medical students.

CERA Board member Wendy Miller

Ms Wendy Miller

BA,  LLB (Hons)

Wendy Miller is a practising lawyer with close to 10 years’ experience in corporate and commercial law. She is an expert in governance, contracting, partnerships and compliance. Wendy was previously a director of the Victorian Deaf Society and is currently a governance and legal adviser at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image.

Brigitte Smith

Ms Brigitte Smith

B Chem Eng (Honours), MBA (Honours), MALD

Brigitte Smith has twenty years’ experience in venture capital, business strategy and start-up company operations. Brigitte has been investing and managing investments for GBS’s life science specialised venture capital funds since 1998. Prior to founding GBS, Brigitte worked in the USA and Australia in operating roles with early stage technology based companies, and at Bain & Company as a strategic management consultant.

Ms Smith is a Fulbright Scholar completing a MBA (Honours) from the Harvard Business School. She is also an adjunct lecturer in Entrepreneurial Finance at Melbourne Business School.