19 October 2021 - Joseph Conrad's Eastern Voyages 
Ian Burnet

Ian Burnet has spent thirty years, living, working and travelling in Indonesia and is fascinated by the diverse history and culture of the archipelago. This is reflected in his books Spice Islands, followed by East Indies, then Archipelago - A Journey Across Indonesia, then Where Australia Collides with Asia, then The Tasman Map and now his latest book Joseph Conrad’s Eastern Voyages.

The life of Józef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski reads like an adventure story, an adventure story that could be written by somebody like Joseph Conrad. The young Conrad dreamed of a life at sea, he eventually became a British merchant seaman and he spent fifteen years sailing on the classic three-masted, square-rigged sailing ships before they were ultimately replaced by steamships. During this period, he worked his way up from apprentice to third mate, to second mate, to first mate and finally the captain of one of these beautiful ships.

Conrad loved the ‘mysterious East’ and his first books – Almayers Folly, An Outcast of the Islands, Lord Jim and The Rescue were all set in Borneo and based on the people and places he encountered in his own voyages as first mate on a trading vessel based out of Singapore.   In this new book, Ian has taken the liberty to place the parts of these first novels into their proper narrative sequence and focus on the back-story of his characters, which will make it easier to discover Conrad’s genius. 

Ian will first talk about Conrad's voyages to Australia and then his voyages from Singapore to Borneo and his first books.

26 October 2021 - Club Forum 

At our Club Forum we will discuss our current program and causes we wish to support in the future. In doing so, we shall bear in mind our Club goals. Please bring along your ideas, suggestions and proposals – the more the better! 

The agenda will include  

  • Finances
  • Rotary Foundation
  • Club service including the Speaker program
  • Fundraising
  • Public relations including Web site and Facebook
  • Community
  • Youth
  • Any other general business

 Guests are always welcome.

02 November  - TBA  

xxx is a  .... 

 Guests are always welcome.

09 November  - Scam Awareness  
Ken Preshaw  

xxx is a  .... 

 Guests are always welcome.

16 November  - Captain Cook Graving Dock 
Noel Phelan  

The construction of the dock was the second largest engineering project in Australia – larger than the Harbour Bridge. The Snowy Scheme was the largest. Ships were growing in size and the Sutherland dock at Cockatoo Island could not accommodate them. In 1938 the nearest large dock was the Royal Naval Base at Singapore – two weeks sailing away.

After investigating 16 sites around Australia, Garden Island was selected. The construction required the reclamation of 30 acres of land which resulted in Garden Island being joined to the mainland at Pott’s Point. The dock is 358 m long and can de divided into two sections. An enormous amount of infrastructure was needed to support the operation of the dock and work on the ships. A bomb proof standby Power Station and Pumping Plant were built as well as large cranes including the large 250 ton hammerhead crane. The labour force peaked at 4,125 in 1943. The dock was completed in 1945 just in time to repair the battle damaged Pacific fleets.

Come along and learn how a dock operates and how the dock was built during the war where equipment was very limited.

 Guests are always welcome.

30 November  - NTA Update 
 Stephanie Heighes

North Sydney Sunrise Rotary Club sponsored the Nusa Tenggara association (NTA).  This presentation will cover

  • A short overview of the NTA, including NTAs achievements in FY 20-21
  • The current Covid-19 situation in Indonesia (focus on eastern Indonesia) and how Covid-19 affected NTA’s operations (opportunities and challenges)
  • A completion report on how the donation of $ 2500 by the Rotary Club of North Sydney Sunrise has been spent (including picture documentation, comments from supported schools etc.)
  • A glimpse of the future (including for example new pilot projects - teacher in a box, teacher training in Sikka, etc.)

Stephanie is a social Anthropologist from Switzerland.  She has been working for the Humanitarian Aid and Development Cooperation since 2004 and lived from 2007 to 2017 in Flores (NTT- Indonesia). She moved to Sydney in December 2017 with her Australian husband and their 2 children. She started working for NTA in June 2017.

Guests are always welcome.

TBA  2022 - Street Graffiti Artists
Mike Gill 


 Guests are always welcome.

Previous Speakers

12 October  - The Case for Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) in Australia
Tony Irwin 

All Australia’s coal-fired power stations will be shutdown before 2050 and SMRs would be ideal to repower these sites, using existing infrastructure and the staff can be retrained saving jobs and the local economy. Tony will give examples of suitable SMRs and answer the questions “are they safe” and “what about the waste”.

Tony Irwin is a Chartered Engineer, Chair of Engineers Australia Sydney Division Nuclear Engineering Panel and Technical Director of SMR Nuclear Technology Pty Ltd.  Tony worked for British Energy (formerly the Central Electricity Generating Board) in the UK for more than thirty years commissioning and operating 8 nuclear power reactors.

In 1999 he moved permanently to Australia and joined the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) where he managed fuel strategies and provided advice on nuclear issues. He was subsequently appointed as Reactor Manager for the commissioning and operation of ANSTO’s new OPAL research reactor. Tony is now a Consultant. 

Tony is the principal lecturer for the ANU Master of Nuclear Science Course Reactor and Fuel Cycle modules and visiting lecturer at USYD.

Guests are always welcome.

05 October - Regaining Your Health after Lockdown  
Taylor Harrison   

This talk will give practical tips and information on ways to get your bodies moving, prevent injuries and regain fitness following four months of lockdown. In particular, the talk will focus on strengthening and improving balance. The exercises and tips will be simple and easy to perform and won't require any special equipment.

Taylor Harrison is the founder and director of Active Seniors Health Centre which he started in 2006. These centres have helped thousands of Seniors remain active. Taylor has written 4 books on the topic as well as producing online videos which have been watched over 1 million times.

Guests are always welcome.

28 September  - Royal Far West - Tara Tan  

Tara will provide

  • a brief overview of what Royal Far West does
  • A brief history of Royal Far West
  • An overview of Royal Far West programs
  • an update on what they are doing around bushfire recovery and other projects.

 Tara first got a taste for fundraising over 10 years ago after side-stepping from an unfulfilling corporate job into a marketing role with Pareto Fundraising. Since then, she has developed and delivered fundraising and marketing programs for Habitat for Humanity Australia, Heart Research Australia and Royal Far West. Tara’s skills, experience and passion for fundraising translates into a deep understanding of what’s required to achieve sustainable growth and create meaningful impact for causes, their beneficiaries and donors.

Guests are always welcome.

21 September  - Ethics 
Graeme Robinson

As you know, Rotary has its Four Way Test:

  1. Is it the Truth
  2. Is it FAIR to all concerned
  4. Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned

Graeme Robinson will present on “Ethics”, a topic of much relevance in the current environment.

Graeme will examine 

  • Ethics beginnings as a concept, and
  • how the many definitions of ethics have been influenced by
    • different religions,
    • constitutions of countries, and
    • ethical theorists 
  • whether the Rotary test addresses the challenges of life in 2021.
    • Is the Four Way Test still relevant? Does there need to be a Fifth Test or do any of the existing Four Tests need to be changed? 

Graeme is a consulting engineer, dispute resolver, arbitrator, mediator, and adjudicator. He has 40 years’ experience in designing and developing major infrastructure and mineral resource projects. He develops projects and determines disputes in Australia, Asia, central and West Africa, the Middle East, and the Pacific rim.

 Guests are always welcome.

07 September  - Lets Talk about Suicide 
Jennifer Gripton-Corbet & Ceiny Maybury  

Jen & Ceiny will discuss

  • Suicide has a devastating impact on families, friends and whole communities. 
  • Behind every suicide statistic there is a human life. 
  • Statistics and data
  • Suicide is complex - emotional and physical reactions, how to maintain well-being, when and where to seek help.

Jennifer Gripton-Corbett is a counsellor with a Master's in Counselling & Psychotherapy and has a Bachelor of Science (RN). She is the Clinical Services Coordinator and a counsellor at Lifeline Harbour to Hawkesbury(H2H) and also works in in private practice with individuals, couples and families who may be struggling with mental health issues. 

Ceiny Maybury is a therapist and educator. She has fulfilled the roles of Lifeline Centre Supervisor, Training Coordinator, Suicide Bereavement Support Group Facilitator and Crisis Support Workplace Trainer. Ceiny is a passionate advocate for members of the public experiencing mental health issues, domestic violence and suicidal ideation. She holds a Bachelor of Counselling, Master of Counselling TAE and Dip Ed.

31 August - Australian Music Industry - 1960s', 1970s', 1980s' & beyond 
Jim Towers & Mario Millo

Mario Millo - guitarist, singer, song writer, movie and television composer.

Jim Towers - band booking agent, venue entertainment agent and promoter.

They will be speaking to us about the 'Australian Music Industry - 1960s', 70s', 80s' and beyond'

Guests are always welcome.

24 August - Street Side Medics
Daniel Nour 

Dr. Daniel Nour has a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery from James Cook University.  Early in his career, he realised his passion to address the needs of underprivileged and vulnerable members of the community. This led to his ambition to start a mobile medical clinic which uniquely addresses the multiple health disparities experienced by the homeless and alleviates the many burdens present in accessing healthcare. With the support of mentors, colleagues, and countless others who assisted, Street Side Medics was created.

The service operates from mobile medical vans which ensures that it is able to reach the homeless community across multiple locations. Each doctor in the van is an RACGP accredited GP and the vans are fitted with the necessary equipment to provide primary healthcare services, to the standard of a normal general practice.

Daniel will describe the journey to create “Street Side Medics” and how the service operates. 

Guests are always welcome.

17 August - Parkinson's & Shake It Up
Clyde Campbell 

Clyde Campbell is the founder of Shake It Up Australia Foundation and has an entrepreneurial spirit and a vision for the future. Clyde decided not to sit back and wait for the rest of the world to find a cure for Parkinson’s but to join the action. In 2011 he launched Shake It Up Australia Foundation with one mission – to increase awareness and funding in Australia targeted at finding better treatments and ultimately a cure for Parkinson’s.

Clyde also wanted to ensure that 100% of all donations received went to Parkinson’s research. This commitment is made possible by Clyde and his brother Greg funding all the administration and overhead costs of the foundation. Since 2011 the foundation has co-funded over $15 Million into Parkinson’s Research in Australia and are now the leading non-government funder of Parkinson’s research across multiple institutes.

On 26 January 2021, Clyde was appointed as a Member (AM) of the Order of Australia (General Division)  in the Australia Day Honours List, in recognition of his significant service to community health, particularly to people living with Parkinson’s disease.

He will talk about his diagnosis and how he came to start the foundation and establish a partnership with The Michael J. Fox Foundation and our research agenda and progress.

Guests are always welcome.

10 August 2021 - Joseph Banks 
Ian Burnet

Ian Burnet Is the author of a number of books, including Spice Islands, which tells the History, Romance and Adventure of the spice trade from the Moluccas in Eastern Indonesia over a 2000 year period.

This talk about Joseph Banks follows his voyage on the Endeavour. This was the defining point in his life.  But what happened to his vast collection of botanical specimens after his return to England?

03 August 2021 - Teddy Sheean
Noel Phelan 

During a confrontation with thirteen Japanese aircraft on 1 December 1942, HMAS Armidale was struck by two torpedoes and a bomb, and began to sink; the order to abandon ship was given. After helping to free a life-raft, Sheean was wounded by two bullets. He made his way to the aft Oerlikon 20 mm cannon and began to fire on the Japanese aircraft to protect those in the water. Sheean managed to shoot down one of the Japanese bombers, but he was killed when Armidale sank. Many of the survivors credited their lives to Sheean, and he was posthumously mentioned in despatches.

In 2020, Sheean was awarded a Victoria Cross. This was the first VC awarded to a Royal Australian Navy crew member.

Come along and hear this story of courage.

Noel Phelan's first career was as a science and mathematics teacher. He then moved into IT with IBM where he spent 25 years in various technical and management positions.  He has been a volunteer guide at the Maritime Museum for several years and enjoys showing visitors over HMAS Vampire, HMAS Advance, HMAS Onslow and First Lady. Noel is also the team leader for the museum speakers.

 Guests are always welcome.

20 July 2021 - District Governor Visit
Lindsay May 

At this meeting our Club will present our current program and causes that we plan to support in 2021/22.    

The agenda will include  

  • Finances including fundraising
  • Rotary Foundation
  • Club service including the Speaker program
  • Public relations including Web site and Facebook
  • Community
  • Youth

 Lindsay will present the district's plans for the year.

Guests are always welcome.

13 July - 1942 Japanese Submarine Attack
Ray Rees 

On 29 May 1942, five Japanese submarines gathered outside Sydney Harbour. The war was about to come to Sydney. Three midget submarines were launched but only one managed to fire its weapons, one of which sunk the ferry HMAS Kuttabul, an accommodation vessel moored at Garden Island. Twenty-one sailors lost their lives.

This talk will explain what happened, how it happened and will briefly consider the aftermath.

The talk will be given by Commander Ray Rees, RAN Retired. After spending over thirty years in the navy, joining as an apprentice, Ray retired as a Commander Engineer and has continued his interest in marine matters by volunteering with the Sydney Heritage Fleet restoring and crewing in a range of heritage vessels.

Guests are always welcome.

06 July 2021      

Changeover meeting via zoom

7:15 AM

Location - your home 

29 June 2021 - Dementia Cafe  
Denise Ward

One of the Crows Nest Centre’s latest projects is the establishment of Your Rotary D-Caf, a dementia café for people living with dementia and their carers. This is a partnership project with the Rotary Clubs of Crows Nest, North Sydney, North Sydney Sunrise and Northbridge. Denise Ward, Executive Officer of the Crows Nest Centre, will talk to us about normal ageing versus symptoms of dementia, the incidence of dementia in Australia and overseas, behind the scenes planning with Rotary for the Dementia Café and the importance of this initiative for our local community.

Denise Ward is the Executive Officer, Crows Nest Centre, a position she has held since 2011. Denise has previously worked in a wide variety of government and non-government roles in the ageing and disability sector. As one of Northern Sydney's original Home and Community Care Development Workers, she contributed to the development of many services that enable older people to remain in their own homes. Denise has also undertaken policy and strategy roles in State and Local government and taught up and coming community service workers at TAFE. The not for profit sector remains dear to her heart and she has enjoyed a return to direct service, alongside the opportunity to balance her work and family life. Denise is also a past RYLArian and the recipient of a Rotary management scholarship.

15 June 2021 - Member Talk 
Andrew Harvey 

As a relatively new member of our club, he will give us insight into his journey through life.

01 June 2021 - Paediatric Medical Traumatic Stress 

Alexandra de Young   

What is Paediatric Medical Traumatic Stress (PMTS) and what we can do about it?   PMTS is a consequence of contact with health care by children and their families.  The traumatic stress emerges from the events surrounding the reasons for admission as well as the experiences of the child and their family during the admission. This can include procedures that are painful for the child and distressing for the parent. In this talk, Alex will describe the nature of medical traumatic stress including the prevalence, course and risk factors. She will also describe the work that her team has been undertaking over the past 10 years to identify, prevent and reduce the impact of medical traumatic stress for very young injured/ill children (aged 1-5 years) and their families.

Dr Alexandra De Young is a clinical psychologist and research fellow at the University of Queensland and the Queensland Centre for Perinatal and Infant Mental Health. She is internationally recognised as a leading expert in the diagnosis, assessment, prevention and early intervention for PTSD following medical trauma during early childhood. De Young has also been involved in the development of resources for the award winning Birdie’s Tree resources that support the mental health and wellbeing of young children and families affected by disruptive events (i.e., natural disasters, COVID- 19).  She is currently leading the COVID-19 Unmasked global collaboration with 9 countries to understand the mental health impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on young children and families.

25 May 2021      Urbanist and Futurist 

William Chan   

From designing Olympic stadiums, metro transit systems to entire city masterplans, HY William Chan is an urbanist and futurist innovating for social inclusion and climate resilience in our urban communities. A dual Convocation and University Medallist (University of Sydney), William is a World Economic Forum Global Shaper and headline TEDx speaker.

William's innovative practice showcases the future of cities: co-living housing to solve homelessness in Sydney, smart infrastructure to address food security in Milan, and the circular economy in refugee camps to upcycle plastic waste into 3D-printed construction elements in Athens. In 2019, he was the only architect recognised by Forbes magazine on their '30 Under 30' list globally.

William is named in the top 20 on the Qantas Centenary '100 Inspiring Australians' list, top 25 most influential people in the social sector by Pro Bono Australia, and GreenBiz top 30 young global sustainability leaders by the World Business Council for Sustainable Business. An avid volunteer surf lifesaver, recent UNICEF Ambassador and Rotary Foundation Global Scholar, William was inducted into the Australian of the Year Awards Honour Roll in 2020.

William will talk about his Rotary Foundation Global Grant experience in Europe (2015-17) and how that has led to civic leadership opportunities in Sydney.

18 May 2021      

Your Eyes & what happens after 50

Chris Hodge  

Dr Chris Hodge will talk to us about ‘our eyes over 50 years of age’ - what challenges to expect and their treatments.   Over 90% of all eye conditions that can lead to mild to moderate eye impairment, are treatable due to the increase in technology and improved health care.  Almost 75% of all eye diseases occur after 50 years of age, so it is important for us to get regular eye checks.  Chris will talk about Presbyopia, Diabetes, Glaucoma, Cataracts, and Macular degeneration.

Chris has had a particularly distinguished career as an orthoptist. He excelled as a clinician, being part of the team that introduced laser vision correction to Sydney and has continued that journey to the very elegant procedure it is today. In his current role as the research coordinator at Vision Eye Institute, he is responsible for running clinical trials and developing research projects.  Many of these projects have resulted in innovations that helped to shape modern ophthalmology.  He gained his PhD at the University of Sydney. He is also a lecturer at the University of Sydney, School of Medicine and the University of Technology."

11 May 2021      

Sydney Wildlife Rescue

Bev Young  

Sydney Wildlife Rescue is operated only by dedicated volunteers - about 400 of them. Discover how you can help and maybe even join us. Our core 'business' is rescuing and caring for wildlife, but we welcome help from the public in many support areas - transport, food supplies, rescue line call centre, preparation of online training courses, graphic designers for our education and publicity material - even serving up sausages at Bunnings BBQs for fundraising! This talk will discuss the material in the recently published little 'glovebox booklet' which gives you all the information and contacts you'll need for helping injured wildlife here in Sydney or out on the road in country NSW. 

Bev has been a wildlife rescuer and carer for 23 years, and a member of Sydney Wildlife since its inception in 1997. Most of this time she has been retired, following a 40year career as a speech pathologist with people with disabilities – but always an animal lover too. She has also researched for, and presented papers at four national wildlife rehabilitation conferences. Currently and for the past 3 years, she is also the first responder for Sydney Wildlife on their webmail – a job that through the recent fire emergency has meant an average of 5 hours a day communicating with media and people, many overseas, who want to help in a practical sense. She was honoured to receive the Order of Australia medal in 2007 for her pioneering work in early intervention (disabled children) and for her work in wildlife care.

04 May 2021 - How are Vaccines made & how do they work  

Don Napper 

There are currently some seven or eight vaccines of various types being used worldwide for mass vaccinations and many more being developed. This talk will provide a focus on the different ways in which the vaccines are prepared and how, for example, the virus-vector AstraZeneca vaccine differs from the mRNA Pfizer vaccine.  It will also discuss how the different vaccines work.

Emeritus Professor Don Napper was educated at Sydney and Cambridge Universities in molecular chemistry. He retired from Sydney University in 2003 as the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Sciences & Technology), where he is now Professor Emeritus

27 April 2021  - The Age of Discovery    

Ray Walsh 

Join us on a Voyage of Discovery through the age of discovery. Learn how Europe discovered the wider world and the wider world discovered the Europeans.

Our voyage begins with a look at the Spice Islands. Where are they? What spices were grown there? Why did the Europeans value spices?

What motivated the 15th Century Portuguese to discover a way to visit India and, most importantly, the ability to safely return home? How did they learn to sail thousands of kilometers over open ocean on successful multi-year voyages? What were their advances in ship construction, navigation, cartography, and food storage? How did they pay for their exploration?

Who were the famous explorers? What were they looking for? What did they find?

Ray Walsh discovered computers whilst studying for an English degree in 1980. He then spent 35+ years in the IT industry involved in all facets of the technology including software engineering, networking, and data centres. Since retirement in 2017, Ray has volunteered on the Maritime Museum’s floating fleet and recently taken up boating. His research interests include: Maritime Explorers, the Silk Road, and Ancient China.

13 April 2021  - Duyfken    

Ian Burnet  

In 1606, a small ship called the Duyfken sailed into history when, during a journey of exploration, it became the first European ship to make a recorded landing on Australian shores.

The Duyfken replica vessel has now joined the permanent exhibition of ships at the National Maritime Museum.  Ian Burnet will talk about the history of the original Duyfken, the construction of the replica ship, and the various voyages of re-enactment that it has undertaken.

Ian Burnet Is the author of a number of books, including Spice Islands, which tells the History, Romance and Adventure of the spice trade from the Moluccas in Eastern Indonesia over a 2000 year period.

06 April 2021  - COVID Update    

Trent Zimmerman MP  

Trent will review the present situation regarding the Covid-19 pandemic and what we may expect over the next 12 months.

His talk will cover

  • Border openings and closures
  • International Tourism
  • Education (with international students being severely reduced in numbers)
  • The number of incoming passengers and quarantining
  • Job Seeker usage in the North Sydney electorate
  • the release of Covid-19 vaccines
    • 50 million doses are planned
    • most Australians being vaccinated by October
    • Vaccination will be issued free-of-charge

Trent Zimmerman is the Member for North Sydney in the Australian Parliament. Trent is the Chair of the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Health, Aged Care and Sport. He is also the member of the House Standing Committee on the Environment and Energy, the Joint Standing Committee on Public Accounts and the House Privileges Committee. He is Convenor of the Coalition Friends of Tourism, Co-Convenor of several bi-partisan Parliamentary Friendship Groups including Amnesty International, the SBS, Rare Diseases and the Australian Catholic University.

30 March 2021  - The Albert Hotel    

Kate Branch  

Originally built in 1886 as a stately home named Telopea, The Albert has been reborn as a luxurious boutique hotel.  It is situated (behind the Crystal Carwash) next to Boronia House which was owned by the same extended family that owned Telopea.  Over the years the Telopea building had fallen into disrepair and was last used as a radiology and medical centre.  Many of the original features of the house have been restored and a modern wing has been added. 

Kate Branch, Public Relations Manager for the hotel will talk about

  • the history of the building and its redevelopment. 
  • the challenges of opening a new hotel during the COVID-19 pandemic.   
  • and show some interesting old photos of the original building and its occupants. 

Kate is a life-long photographer, public relations manager and travel lover who currently resides in Sydney with her husband and two children.  She holds two University degrees, a Bachelor (BFA) of Fine Art, for which she majored in Photography, and a Master (MA) of Art Therapy (Fine Art and Psychodynamics).  Alongside her academic background, Kate credits travel for being her ultimate teacher in aiding her appreciation and understanding of art, photography, and life.

23 March 2021  - Vaccines    

Prof Tony Basten 

With the roll out of vaccines at the end of February 2021, Professor Basten who is from the Garvan Institute of Medical Research, will talk about the pandemic, and vaccines, their purpose and outcome as known at this time.

Tony is a clinician/scientist with a career spanning over 40 years, initially at Sydney University and RPA hospital and now at the Garvan Institute. During this time, he has made a substantial contribution to our understanding of how the immune system is regulated in health and disease.

In 1980 he was the inaugural winner of the Glaxo Smith Kline medal for research excellence, while between 1987 and 1989 he served as the Commonwealth’s chief advisor on the medical aspects of HIV/AIDS. 

He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science and has recently co-edited its Q&A on Immunisation for the public.  He has been a Rotarian for 29 years as a member of the Rotary Club of Chatswood (now ChatswoodRoseville) where he has served in a number of roles including the Presidency.

09 March 2021  - A Bookshop in Wartime    

Jenny Horsfield  

Verity Hewitt’s fabled bookshop was the only such shop in Canberra during the Second World War. Governor General Lord Gowrie called it ‘the nicest little bookshop in Australia’. It became a meeting place for diplomats, service men and women, artists and writers, public servants and the Canberra community, which was changing from a country town to a capital city under the pressures of war.

Jenny Horsfield will talk about this renowned bookshop.

Jenny Horsfield is a Canberra writer and historian. Her book, ‘Rainbow: the story of Rania MacPhillamy’ won the award for Non-Fiction Book of the Year in the 2008 ACT Writers and Publishers awards

23 February 2021  - RYDA   (Road Safety Youth Driver Awareness) 

John Elliot   

Road Safety Education Limited (RSE) is a not for profit organisation committed to providing evidence-based road safety education that supports the development of a road safety culture across the generations.

At the heart of the programs lies RYDA (Rotary Youth Driver Awareness) – a school partnership which supports teachers on the journey as they provide their students with the tools and understanding they need to see themselves as active, responsible road citizens.  RYDA features a highly engaging and memorable one-day workshop which front-loads students’ understanding of road safety and gives them the tools, habits and motivation to take action and stay safe on our roads a both drivers and passengers throughout their lives.

John Elliott joined the small RSE head office team in September 2020 as the National Program Manager. This followed a long career teaching, marketing and management in higher education and tourism sectors. In this role he is responsible for the roll-out of the RYDA program with schools throughout Australia.

He will talk about RYDA

  • Its history
  • The content of the program and who it is targeted at
  • The current status including adoption in the Norths Sydney LGA
  • Opportunities for involvement
16 February 2021 - Special Children’s Services Centre

John Zhang   

Special Children Services Centre Inc. (SCSC) is an incorporated association chartered in 2008 for provision of support services to intellectually disabled children from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds and their families. Intellectually disabled children from CALD backgrounds typically received less support from mainstream services mostly because their carers spoke little or no English and are unsure of where they can go for support. Many of their cultures tend to fear the stigma associated with having an intellectually disabled child. This often results in their families not wanting to ask for assistance.

SCSC was founded to bridge this gap by creating a safe haven for the families, offering support to them, organising therapy classes and helping them to get mainstream assistance including from the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

The organisation is run by volunteers, and the management committee consists entirely of volunteers, who come from many different professions.  John Zhang joined SCSC first as a volunteer and was later elected to the management committee and has been the president since 2018.

This talk will be about the journey of the SCSC, what is it like for the children and their families from CALD backgrounds, and insights into the kinds of support that SCSC provide to these families.

09 February 2021  - Brigitte Cox    

Food Safety    

Brigitte Cox is a Director, Scientific Committee Chair of the Food Safety Information Council and an Honorary Fellow in Agriculture and Food at CSIRO. For 14 years she was a Food Technology Liaison Officer at the North Ryde Laboratory of the food division of CSIRO and before that an academic at UNSW and TAFE.

The Scientific Committee of the Food Safety Information Council contains members from academia, CSIRO, and State and Federal departments involved in food safety. Our role is to vet the material produced by the Council and ensure that the information is scientifically valid and up to date.  The major activity of the Council is to organise events and materials for National Food Safety Awareness Week.

Brigitte will speak about how to keep your food safe and avoid food poisoning from bacteria and viruses. She will also touch on the effect of COVID and food. Finally, she will introduce the audience to the Food Safety Information Council where they can find a lot more information on food safety.

For latest information on food safely access the Food Safety Information Council website

02 February 2021  -   Sister Mary Leah

Seafarers & the Pandemic   

It is estimated that around 100,000 seafarers finish their contracts and fly home every month in normal times.  This is not currently happening, and they are stuck on the ships for who knows how long.

Known as the “angel of Sydney’s waterfront” Sister Mary Leahy has spent the past 20 years helping those who earn a living on the seas. She said she has never seen conditions so desperate. She is working around the clock to help the thousands of exhausted sea farers caught up in the centre of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Day-and-night, the softly spoken sister with a cheeky sense of humour is known to appear with everything from clean clothes, practical advice, spiritual guidance or just a listening ear for somebody doing it tough.

Sister Mary will talk about her experiences supporting seafarers, with a special focus on the pandemic of 2020.

19 January 2021  - The 2017 Fastnet Race   

Speaker - Lindsay May  

Lindsay May's 48th trip to Hobart was thwarted by Covid 19.

He was due to navigate the famous Kialoa II that took line honours back in 1971.

Lindsay’s first race on K2 was in August 2017 in the famed Fastnet Race from Cowes on the Isle of Wight, out to Fastnet Rock off the tip of Ireland and back to Plymouth in the UK. Kialoa II was bought by brothers Paddy & Keith Broughton in Portugal in 2016 and barely made the voyage back to Hamble UK to be fully refurbished.  The mainly Australian crew spent the week prior to the race finishing the rebuild and set out on Lindsay's second Fastnet, his first was 1983 as part of the Australian Admiral's Cup team.

15 December 2020 - Crows Nest Centre Update 

Speaker - Denise Ward 

The Crows Nest Centre is recognised as a premier provider of quality community services and as a place at the heart of a vibrant connected community. The Crows Nest Centre exists to provide & facilitate quality community programs & services that connect the community, to sustain community wellbeing and reduce social isolation.

The centre provides inclusive, responsive and accessible programs and services which contribute to and sustain community wellbeing, reduce social isolation and enhance the quality of life for people in the local community, focused primarily on the North Sydney Area.

Denise Ward (Executive officer of the Crows Nest Centre) will give us an update on the work of the Centre, which we have supported and helped fund over recent years.

24 November 2020 - North Shore Trams 

Speaker - Ron Besdansky 

There was a time when trams were a common sight on the north shore.

Remember when you could travel anywhere on the tram network for just one shilling?

How did the network operate? How did the trams intertwine with the trains? And what led to the demise of this much loved form of public transport?

17 November 2020 - Fake News  

Speaker - Uma Patel 

People often blame disinformation and fake news on the companies that allow it to be shared and the governments that refuse to outlaw it.  However, as Uma has seen in her work, if everyday people give their eyeballs, clicks and money to trustworthy sources then the power of fake news would evaporate. 

Uma Patel is a management consultant who works for FT Strategies (which is part of the financial times). She specialises in news companies.  She previously worked as an ABC federal political reporter and Sky News New Zealand correspondent. 

Uma will speak about the role everyday people can play in stopping fake news. 

10 November 2020 - Women Sailors  

Noel Phelan  

Many women have now completed successful circumnavigations of the world, competed and won in the classic yacht races and won gold at the Olympics and Para Olympics.  Kay Cottee was the first woman to sail around the world, nonstop and single handed in 1987/88. Jessica Watson repeated the voyage in 2009/10.

These women faced many challenges including being rolled over, pitch poled, dismasted, knocked down, washed overboard and the loss of the keel or rudder. Both Kay and Jessica were knocked down several times with the mast and sails on the water surface; Kay was also washed overboard.

Age has not been a barrier. Jeanne Socrates completed two world circumnavigations at age 70 and 77. Laura Dekker at age 14 attempted the same only to be stopped by the Dutch authorities, but went on to do the voyage at 16.

Come along and hear the stories of many women sailors both Australian and other countries. Several have been inducted into the Australian Sailing Hall of Fame.

Noel Phelan's first career was as a science and mathematics teacher. He then moved into IT with IBM where he spent 25 years in various technical and management positions.  He has been a volunteer guide at the Maritime Museum for several years and enjoys showing visitors over HMAS Vampire, HMAS Advance, HMAS Onslow and First Lady. Noel is also the team leader for the museum speakers. 

3 November 2020 - A Vision for North Sydney 

Jeremy Dawkins 

Back in 2000, Jeremy Bingham offered a frank assessment of the North Sydney city centre: ‘It has no heart. It has no central point. It has no civic spaces. It has no style. It’s a mish-mash.’

Eighteen years later, the newly formed Committee for North Sydney described the city centre as little more than ‘an office park with through traffic’.

Never give up! The Committee for North Sydney is upbeat about the future of the North Sydney city centre. It recently released its strategic vision for North Sydney, called Five Big Ideas for the Future City Centre.

The Convenor of the Committee for North Sydney, Jeremy Dawkins, will speak about the role of the Committee, the imaginative ideas in the strategy, and how the Committee’s vision could be implemented.

The 24 members of the Committee for North Sydney — eminent academics and professional practitioners in the fields of architecture, urban design and urban planning, and local experts and community leaders, all North Sydney residents — set out to facilitate public and expert contributions to the progressive improvement of North Sydney, through policy debate, public conversations and urban planning and design. The Committee is supported by an independent, member-governed incorporated Association that anyone can join.

Jeremy Dawkins is a leading Australian urban planner who has combined hands-on planning practice with policy making, university teaching and research. He managed the revival of Fremantle at the time of the America’s Cup, and set up the NSW Government’s strategic management of Sydney Harbour at the time of the Sydney Olympic Games. He established and directed the Master of Planning program at UTS, and was executive Chairman of the Western Australian Planning Commission. He is Vice President of the International Society of City and Regional Planners.

 see https://committeefornorthsydney.org.au/ for more info

20 October 2020 - Club Forum 

At our Club Forum we will discuss our current program and causes we wish to support in the future. In doing so, we shall bear in mind our Club goals. Please bring along your ideas, suggestions and proposals – the more the better! 

The agenda will include  

  • Finances
  • Rotary Foundation
  • Club service including the Speaker program
  • Fundraising
  • Public relations including Web site and Facebook
  • Community
  • Youth
  • Any other general business

 Guests are always welcome.

27 October 2020 - North Sydney Council Insights

Ian Mutton  

Ian was elected to North Sydney Council in 2017 and he will provide insight into his experiences starting from the election campaign. 

Once elected, he realised that popularism is a powerful decision driver – he will comment on how this played out when dealing with

  • Revenue falling short of the cost of the services being demanded.
  • The divisiveness that comes from 4 years of community consultations in the context of deciding the future for the Olympic Pool.
  • Ever increasing pressure from the State Government to increase population density and the pushback from the community.
  • Pressure to repurpose public open space.
  • The limited utility of a property portfolio accumulated over the years.

Ian Mutton is a North Sydney councillor.  He has been heavily engaged with the protection of community assets. He is a driver behind:

  • The Sydney Harbour Highline project
  • Making Wendy’s Secret Garden permanent
  • Protecting Luna Park and securing its future

Ian is also the practice director of a Sydney based law firm specialising in contract related matters and competition and product liability laws.

13 October 2020 - Healing Your Life 

Marshall Dunn 

Marshall Dunn is a Spiritual Healer & Guide, Meditation Teacher and Author of the book Letters to Mitch: The Healing Power of Grief, Love & Truth and host of Marshall Dunn’s Soul Hour Podcast. After the suicide of his elder brother in 2002, Marshall underwent a spiritual awakening, which opened a door for his Greater Destiny to reveal itself. Now with over 15 years of meditation & healing experience and a Master's Degree in Psychology, Spirituality & Mind-Body Practice from Columbia University, Marshall has delivered his grounded, healing wisdom to the likes of Universal Music Group (UMG), Barclays, Acast, Slyp, WeWork, L&A Social, along with reputable private schools in Sydney such as Loreto Kirribilli and Chevalier College. 

Accessing The Intelligence, Wisdom & Peace Of The Heart

In this talk, Marshall Dunn invites people to drop into the essence of what it means to be a Human Being, through a connection with one's heart. Drawing upon science, spirituality and direct experience, Marshall will explore why now more than ever, the most powerful way to peace in our world, starts deep within us. 


  • Why the Heart "knows" and how to access it's intelligence to handle challenge with more grace and ease.
  • The power of coherence when the head and heart are working in alignment.
  • Why your Heart has the ability to heal and release core wounds, limitations, entanglements and attachments - and how you can start healing your life now.
06 October 2020 - Children's books 

Speaker - Karen Hendriks 

Karen Hendriks is a children’s author who lives on the South Coast of New South Wales.  Her debut picture books “Go Away, Foxy Foxy” and “Feathers” were released this year.  Karen is a Books in Homes ambassador and a trained literacy specialist with a teaching background. She is also a moderator for Creative Kids Tales, an online site for children’s writers and illustrators.

Karen will talk about her life journey:

  • Starting with university where she was unable to get into the Children’s Writing elective but in Language Learning was required to write a short story. She will also talk about The Book Gangmangang that she was involved with. 
  • Teaching and picture books and becoming a Reading Recovery Teacher and what she learnt about children and reading - also about socio economically disadvantaged students.
  • Her illness which was the call to action to finally pursue her dream and start writing. Overcoming fear and self doubt and pushing through to pursue writing.
  • Her writing journey and the stories behind “Go Away, Foxy Foxy” and “Feathers”. These are very different and have different inspirations.

29 September 2020 - Finders Distillery 

Speaker - Kyle Ford 

Kyle will go through the story of how he & Georgia came to start a distillery in St Leonards and run through how they make their spirits. He will show the distillation equipment and run through its operation.

Kyle and Georgia have both enjoyed successful careers in their fields. Kyle learnt his trade in engineering with the Australian Airforce and went on to spend 10 years working on military aircraft. Georgia started her career as a buyer in women’s fashion and later moved into the alcohol industry.  In 2016 Kyle and Georgia resigned from their jobs, sold almost everything they owned and set off on a two year, around the world trip. Whilst travelling there seemed to be a common occurrence; visiting distilleries and trying local produce. The idea for Finders Distillery was born.

This little distillery is housed in an industrial unit in St Leonards, on Sydney's North Shore. It is at this location that every bottle of Finders Distillery product is produced.

They use a 300L copper pot still and create each batch individually. They run all of their ingredients in a single distillation, using an exact quantity of each ingredient to produce the perfect taste. They dilute the spirit to drinking strength using water that has been through a multi-stage filtration system. They then bottle, seal, label and package all products by hand, under the same roof.

22 Sept 2020 - Water Management in NSW 

Speaker - Clay Preshaw 

In 1998, Sydney faced an unprecedented water crisis due to a suspected contamination by cryptosporidium and giardia. This led to the formation of the Sydney Catchment Authority, which took over Sydney’s catchment and dams from Sydney Water. 

The Sydney Catchment Authority is now part of WaterNSW, which manages and operates 42 water dams across NSW. WaterNSW is responsible for supplying water to two-thirds of the NSW population and continues to face a variety of significant challenges, including drought, climate change and population growth.

Clay Preshaw works as the Head of Catchment Protection at WaterNSW, and leads a group that is responsible for protecting the source of Sydney’s water supply. He will explore a broad range of water management issues in NSW, including the 1998 Sydney Water Crisis, the ‘multi-barrier approach’ to water supply, the recent drought response, and future water infrastructure projects.

Clay is a town planner and lawyer and has previously worked in various environmental planning roles within NSW and overseas. 

15 September 2020 - The Digital Evolution & Seniors 

Speaker Julian Wee

In a world where a human generation is now averaging over 30 years, and at the same time, the digital world generation is shortening to 4 years, what are some of the implications, especially in relation to the senior population? Julian Wee from Seniors.Rocks will share his findings, and propose a model to address some of the potential and incumbent challenges.”

Julian is the founder and managing partner of Seniors.Rocks, a social enterprise focused on the digital (online) well-being of the seniors population. Previously, Julian held a number of leadership roles in Australia and global regions. His last industry role was as Group CIO for IBM’s Growth Market Unit.  After more than 3 decades in the IT industry and facing a choice of where to call home, the time was ripe to redirect his energy onto his passion for better social outcomes.  In particular his experiences with the seniors population.  Julian has also served on a number of industry boards in Australia and abroad. Including Deakin University (VIC), and The Smith Family. 

08 September 2020 - Human & Hope

Sally Hetherington 

Sally Hetherington lived in Cambodia from 2011 - 2017. Seeing the unintended consequences of voluntourism, she teamed up with Human and Hope Association (HHA), a nightly English school at the time, to develop it into a reputable community centre.  Working as Operations Manager, Sally was responsible for implementing new programs addressing social issues, fundraising, logistics, mentoring and training the staff and ensuring the organisation's long-term future. Sally overcame countless obstacles, but the biggest lesson she learnt was that for sustainable change to happen, locals needed to be leading organisations.

As a result of Sally's empowering approach to development, she successfully made herself redundant, leaving HHA to be entirely run by local staff. Sally is the CEO of Human and Hope Association Inc, a registered charity in Australia that raises funds for Human and Hope Association to continue their poverty-alleviating programs.  Her manifesto, 'It's Not About Me' was published by Elephant House Press in 2019. Sally received an Order of Australia Medal at age 33.

Sally will talk about sustainable development, her journey as a young female building up a not-for-profit organisation, innovation and taking risk, and the unintended consequences of voluntourism.

To support her charity.

01 September 2020 - Real Estate in COVID world

David Gallin & Ben Markos

David & Ben will talk about  

  • The current market including sales and how these compare to previous years. Is it a buyers’ market or sellers’ market and why?
  • COVID19 and the effects it has had on residential and commercial property
  • What lies ahead in the lead up to 2021

Living locally, Ben has insight into the Lower North Shore lifestyle and has made lifelong connections during his time at SCECGS Redlands. Ben is highly motivated and thrives in an ever-changing environment. He is focused on providing clients with a comprehensive and successful real estate experience.

David is a director of the company and focuses on Kirribilli, Lavender Bay and McMahons Point with over 15 years of experience in the industry.  With a thorough knowledge of the many burrows that constitute the lower north shore.

11  August   2020 -  History of Pilot Boats

Noel Phelan

In the early 1800's pilots were rowed out from Watsons Bay to ships in a whaleboat with a crew of 4. Not only was this difficult and dangerous it was fiercely competitive. The signal station on South Head let the pilots know when a ship was approaching. In 1833 pilotage became compulsory for ships over 25 tons. The wreck of the SS Dunbar where there was only one survivor out of the 122 people on board and the following enquiry led to changes.

Three Captain Cook pilot boats served for over 60 years. These were large vessels of 500 tons and a length of 160 feet. They carried whaleboats that were rowed to the ships. The pilots boarded the ships by rope ladders.

Later versions of pilot boats were much smaller and came alongside ships to transfer pilots. The pilot boats today are purpose built and made in the UK - the St Brendan's class. They are capable of 26 knots and 55 feet in length with two 600 BHP engines. They are equipped with the latest in safety gear and navigational aids to operate in difficult conditions.

28 July 2020 - Allergies & anaphylaxix in Australia  

Trent Zimmerman  

The House of Representatives Standing Committee on Health, Aged Care and Sport has completed an inquiry into allergies and anaphylaxis in Australia.  The Chair of the Committee, Trent Zimmerman MP, said that allergies were seeing a rapid rise in Australia affecting more than four million Australians.

Some people experience a life-threatening allergic reaction known as anaphylaxis. Over the last 20 years, hospital admissions for anaphylaxis has increased five-fold and has a major impact for so many families, schools, and childcare centres.

While the cause of the increase in allergies remains uncertain, what is clear is that this is a phenomenon found primarily in wealthier western nations like Australia.

Severe allergies can be life threatening and this will be an important opportunity for the Parliament to shine a light on how we can better support those at risk.

Trent will talk about

  • Why allergies are rising.
  • Whats the current advice to help minimise allergies
  • What state and federal governments can do better to help allergy sufferers.
1 July  2020 - JP's in NSW 

Garry Wood 

Since retiring from a long sales and management career with IBM Australia, Garry Wood has been working with several not for profit organisations and keeping busy with property renovations. Garry was appointed a NSW Justice of the Peace in 2015 and is the President, Sydney Branch of the NSW Justices Association responsible for the 10 JP service desks across the City of Sydney state electorate.  The NSW Justices Association represents over 3500 volunteer JP’s across NSW and maintains over 130 service locations.  In addition, Garry is an active member of Marine Rescue NSW based at Middle Harbour. 

Garry will talk about  

  • the history of JP’s in Australia 
  • the role of JP’s in NSW
  • what is required to be a JP
  • how they are appointed and
  • where to find a JP in your area
30 June  2020 - Sydney Metro  

Neil Dix

Sydney Metro is Australia’s biggest public transport project.  Much has happened in the last year, with services started in May 2019 in the city’s North West, and the completion of tunnelling for the new metro railway between Chatswood and Marrickville.

This talk will provide an update on the Sydney Metro progress showing the latest highlights in the North Sydney area, including

  • work at the Victoria Cross Station sites and
  • Blues Point, and
  • giving a wider overview of the whole project.

Neil Dix –Communications Manager, Tunnel and Station Excavation, Sydney Metro Neil has managed communications and community activities on a range of infrastructure projects including the Northern Beaches B-Line, Kempsey Bypass and National Broadband Network rollout.

28 April 2020 - Dysphagia  

Speaker - Dijana Dragicevich

What is Dysphagia?  Dysphagia is derived from the Greek words phagia (to eat) and dys (with difficulty).  It is difficulty getting food from mouth to stomach.  Like breathing, swallowing is essential to everyday life. Humans swallow at between 500-700 times a day, around three times an hour during sleep, once per minute while awake and even more during meals.  Around one million Australians have a swallowing difficulty. Swallowing problems can occur at any stage of life. However, the knowledge of dysphagia and its implications remain largely unknown for most Australians.

Dijana’s talk will answer the following questions:

  • What is Dsyphagia
  • What causes of Dysphagia
  • What is the anatomy of swallowing
  • What is a Normal Swallow
  • What is an Abnormal Swallow
  • What can go wrong?
  • What are the Consequences of Dysphagia
  • What is her research
14 April 2020 - Nusa Tenggaar (Timor) update  

Speaker - Stephanie Heighes 

North Sydney Sunrise Rotary Club sponsored the Nusa Tenggara Music and Dance Festival in West Timor.  The presentation will cover

  • a Brief history of the NTA (Nusa Tenggara Association)
  • an update on the music festival
  • an update on what NTA is doing in response to covid19 in Flores and West Timor - educational awareness raising campaigns have been run with the local government and the ministry of health to educate people on covid19 in communities and schools. In schools the plan is to start a specific hygiene component with handwash-stations and general awareness raising 
  • Questions and Answers

Stephanie is a social Anthropologist from Switzerland.  She has been working for the Humanitarian Aid and Development Cooperation since 2004 and lived from 2007 to 2017 in Flores (NTT- Indonesia). She moved to Sydney in December 2017 with her Australian husband and their 2 children. She started working for NTA in June 2017.

04 February 2020  - NBN Rollout  

Speaker - Geeth Geeganage 

NBN Co was established in 2009 to design, build and operate Australia’s wholesale broadband access network. Underpinned by a purpose to connect Australia and bridge the digital divide, nbn’s key objective is to ensure all Australians have access to fast broadband as soon as possible, at affordable prices, and at least cost.

To achieve this objective, nbn has been structured as a wholesale-only, open-access broadband network. nbn provides services on its local access network on equivalent terms to retail phone and internet providers, to provision for end-user needs. This is intended to level the playing field in Australian telecommunications, creating real and vibrant competition within the industry and providing choice for consumers.

This presentation will include:

  • What is the nbn™?
  • How does it impact your fixed line phone and internet connections?
  • What do you need to do to get connected?
  • How to avoid scam calls related to nbn

Geeth Geeganage currently represents nbn as a community ambassador. In his role, he is responsible for having conversations with a wide variety of community groups so as to help them better understand the nuances of nbn roll out.

15 January 2019  - 2018 Sydney to Hobart   

Speaker - Lyndsay May  

Lindsay May competed in his 46th consecutive Sydney Hobart Yacht Race last December. A record for consecutive races.  He navigated the classic 73 foot yawl Kialoa II (the line honours winner in 1971) 

The 2018 edition was a straight forward Hobart with nor easterly breezes down the NSW and Tassie coast but at the bottom of Tasmania some of the yachts including Kialoa were battered with 60 knot gusts.

Lindsay will give an overview of the race illustrated by spectacular photographs from some of yachting’s best photographers.


The Club

We look forward to welcoming you.


© Copyright 2020 Rotary Club of North Sydney Sunrise Australia | Website with MOBLE