VIC Division


The Victorian Division of the AAG provides a forum for discussing gerontology issues and brings together people from all disciplines associated with ageing and aged care, from sociologists and clinicians through to policy makers, healthcare providers and consumers. It promotes networking among members and opportunities to keep up to date with the vast array of developments within gerontology through its regular meetings. The Division hosts events, and collaborates with partners across the State to offer workshops/activities on topical subjects.

The Division also supports and encourages the development of postgraduate students and early career researchers across the field of gerontology. It financially assists their membership of the Association. The Division has at least one student representatives who will assist the committee in developing student events and programs, and facilitates active networking for emerging researchers in ageing. 


Ilsa Hampton, GAICD, MPH, BA, BTheol, GradCertMgt, Grad DipEd, has over twenty years experience in health, community services and aged care, and commenced in 2016 as CEO of Meaningful Ageing Australia. Ilsa serves on the Palliative Care Australia board and a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Prior to joining Meaningful Ageing, Ilsa worked in strategic and operational leadership in a range of senior roles in aged and community services including research, social policy, sustainability, spiritual care and community engagement. Before beginning work in aged care, Ilsa had a parallel career teaching migrants and refugees. Click here to get to know ... Ilsa Hampton.


Vice Chair

Dr Anita Goh is a clinical researcher. She works at the Royal Melbourne Hospital, in the Melbourne Younger Onset Dementia clinic, and the world’s first Huntington’s disease clinic. She leads the Huntington’s disease research lab at the Academic Unit for Psychiatry of Old Age, The University of Melbourne; and is a research fellow and project manager at the National Ageing Research Institute. She is committed to improving the life and health of older people. As a clinical neuropsychologist, her work is informed by real life issues, and her research focuses on cognitive health, mental health, and quality of life in ageing, with a specialisation in dementia care - from preclinical to end of life care. She is passionate about creating a future-friendly environment for our ageing population and focuses on  knowledge translation, engagement, and science communication, and is always keen on collaboration.  She is committed to gender equality and is proud to be part of the collective that is making significant improvements for women in STEMM. She is one of 60 women selected nationally to be a 2019 Superstar of STEM – an initiative by Science & Technology Australia that aims to smash society’s gender assumptions about scientists and increase the public visibility of women in STEM. Anita was also one of 80 women selected globally for Homeward Bound project Team 3, a global leadership, strategic. and science initiative for women. Click here to get to know ... Anita Goh


Dr Aislinn Lalor is an Early Career Researcher, Lecturer and Research Fellow at Monash University. Aislinn’s occupational therapy background has included teaching at Monash University since 2009, and clinical work in acute aged mental health and community health positions prior to undertaking her PhD regarding sleep quality of older adults in 2013. Aislinn is currently a part-time Research Fellow with the Rehabilitation, Ageing, and Independent Living (RAIL) Research Centre at Monash University in conjunction with the National Centre for Healthy Ageing. Her current research focuses on co-location and coordination of primary and secondary care services in residential aged care facilities and a Cochrane review of the effectiveness of staffing models in residential, subacute, and extended aged care settings on patient and staff outcomes. Aislinn is passionate about healthy ageing and evidence-based translational research. Her current research interests include ageing, sleep, assistance animals and animal assisted therapy, health service and services for aged care. Aislinn became the Secretary for the AAG Victoria Division Executive Committee in late 2020.


Associate Professor Danny Hills is a Registered Nurse who has worked as a clinician, manager and educator in mental health and clinical governance, both in rural and metropolitan community and hospital settings. His academic teaching and research roles have focused on mental health and aged care workforce development, health sciences and nursing. His primary research interests are in health services and workforce research, workplace aggression, mental health and well-being, ageing and aged care. Danny was the Chair of the 2016 AAG National Conference Planning Committee and a member of the 2017 & 2018 AAG National Conference Planning Committees.


Student & Early Career Group Representative

Jo Tropea is a PhD candidate and Project Coordinator at the University of Melbourne and Melbourne Health. She commenced her PhD in February 2018, and will evaluate the effectiveness of a screen-based simulation training program on end of life dementia care, for staff working in residential aged care homes. She has over 7 years’ research experience in the fields of geriatric medicine and chronic diseases, and 13 years’ experience in coordinating collaborative projects. Her research interests are broad and include: research into current practice and best practice care of the older person, in particular people with cognitive impairment; implementation and evaluation of health service interventions; and use of administrative data to assess adverse and suboptimal outcomes.


Board Nominee

Dr Claudia Meyer is a Research Fellow at the Bolton Clarke Research Institute in Melbourne. Bolton Clarke is a large not-for-profit organisation providing services across the spectrum for at-home support, retirement village living and residential care across Australia, New Zealand and parts of Asia. Claudia combines her skills as an experienced physiotherapist with her research expertise, moving research into action for community-dwelling older people and their carers, specifically in the areas of equity in healthcare, falls prevention and dementia care. She draws upon her expanding network in the community care, hospital and academic sectors to drive her belief in reducing the gap between research and clinical practice. Dr Meyer is the immediate Past President of the International Association of Gerontology and Geriatrics (IAGG) Council of Student Organizations, continuing as the Asia-Oceania representative. She has been an AAG Victorian Executive committee member since 2008 and has served as the National President of the Student and Early Career Group.

Committee Members

Irene Blackberry is the Director of the John Richards Initiative in rural ageing and aged care at La Trobe University. She has a medical background and an expertise in pragmatic trials of complex health services intervention across the community, primary, secondary and tertiary settings drawing on both qualitative and quantitative research methods. Her current research focuses on improving access to care and health outcomes for a diverse range of older people in rural communities including those from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds and disadvantaged communities. She has attracted nearly $4M in competitive research funding and published over 60 research papers in leading international journals and key reports. She is a member of the NHMRC Research Translation Faculty and an Associate Editor of the Primary Care Diabetes Europe. She was an executive committee member of AAG VIC and a founding member of the AAG VIC rural chapter.

Robin Harvey is a lecturer in the Master of Gerontology program at Charles Sturt University, based in Albury and has taught in this course since 2006. Prior to her academic role, Robin gained more than 30 years of experience in social work, specialising in ageing and mental health and health promotion programmes with older people.  Robin has a strong commitment to the further development of gerontology education for health professionals across the tertiary education sector and through her contribution to the AAG. Her research interests include gerontology education and ageing and natural environments. She has been a member of the AAG Victorian Executive since 2008, a founding member of the AAG VIC Rural Chapter and is currently also a founding Co-convenor of the national Ageing Workforce and Education Significant Interest Group (AWESIG) of the AAG. 

Dr Helen Rawson is a Registered Nurse and Senior Research Fellow in the School of Nursing and Midwifery and the Centre for Quality and Patient Safety Research – Monash Health Partnership. In this partnership, Helen supports collaboration between Monash Health, Deakin University and other industry partners. Helen has a passion for the delivery of safe and quality care for older people across the health spectrum and this is demonstrated by her research activities which involves older people in acute, subacute and residential care settings. Helen is also interested in the care of older people from culturally and linguistically diverse groups. As a registered nurse Helen has extensive experience in working with older people in the acute and residential care settings and undertakes many professional activities in this regard.

Dr Alana Hewitt is a registered occupational therapists, working as a lecturer and researcher in the School of Primary and Allied Health Care, Faculty Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, Monash University, Peninsula Campus. Alana’s academic career has involved undergraduate curriculum development, teaching and research in foundation occupational therapy units, evidence based practice, and the role of occupational therapists working with older adults. Prior to moving into academia Alana worked as an occupational therapist in inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation and community health. Alana’s research interests include ageing, retirement transition, informal carers, health service and health education research.

Dr Josefine Antoniades is a research fellow at the National Ageing Research Institute as the project manager of an   innovative multi-media project-Moving Pictures-which aims to improve dementia awareness in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) communities through film making. Her prime research interests include the nexus of culture, mental health and health behaviours, in particular in underserved and vulnerable communities.

Dr Sze-Ee Soh is senior lecturer and post-doctoral research fellow in the School of Primary and Allied Health Care at Monash University and is currently the course coordinator for the Doctor of Physiotherapy program. She is an experienced physiotherapist with an extensive clinical background in delivering physiotherapy services for older adults. Her research has spanned the areas of chronic disease, aged care, health services, patient-reported outcomes and the psychometric properties of measurement tools. She has a unique set of research skills, with particular expertise in quantitative data analysis and is completing a Masters in Biostatistics. She has led the design and analysis of innovative projects including statistical modelling of 8-year data despite maintaining a full-time clinical, teaching and research role.

Amber Mills



Cassandra Szoeke

Anne-Marie Mahoney


Maya Panisset



Past Chairs: Irene Blackberry 2017-2020, Jane Sims 2014-2017

AAG Victoria Division would like to thank the following former committee members; Judy Tang (Secretary 2020), Jane Fyfield (2020), Joanne Mihelcic (2020), Teresa Donegan (2020), Yvonne Wells (2020), Jacqueline Allen (2020),


AAG Victorian Division - Bursaries to attend the 2021 AAG Conference

The AAG Victorian Division invites applications from Victorian AAG members who are post-graduate students and have had an abstract accepted as a presenting author.

Bursaries to the value of $1000 will be offered, on a competitive basis, to support your attendance at the 54th AAG Conference.

When applying you will be asked to:

  • Provide the title of your accepted abstract
  • Describe in 250 words or less why you should receive this bursary and how it would benefit you, your research and/or your future career in gerontology.

** First time attendees and students living in regional and rural Victoria are encouraged to apply. **


Closing date for applications is Monday, 9th August 2021.

Ilsa Hampton


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