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AHTA Management Committee

The AHTA has many roles on it's managment committee. Please click AHTA Management Committee Profiles for a description of these roles.

The current AHTA Management Committee is profiled below. Should you wish to contact a member of the Committee, please do so via Contact Us.


<h5>Karen Fitt</h5>
Karen Fitt


Karen is the current President of the AHTA.  Karen has demonstrated a strong commitment to the field of hand therapy since being admitted to the Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA) as a full member in 1993, through ongoing service to the executive committee and other contributions to the profession.
Most recently, Karen has served as President Elect from February 2016 to February 2017 and has previously served on the AHTA Advocacy Committee, has been the Secretary/Treasurer, Marketing and Communications Officer, and Co-Convenor of the 2008 National Conference. Karen was a member of the executive team responsible for drafting the AHTAs first Strategic Plan in 2008/9.
Karen was invited to join the Inaugural Ministerial Advisory Committee (Allied Health) at the Victorian Health Department under the previous state government and proudly represented hand therapy in that forum. During the past few years, Karen has been commissioned to perform reviews and recommendations for various national and international hand therapy services by organisations such as Monash Health and Interplast. Grass roots contributions to the profession include a dedication to student training and regular presentations at conferences and meetings in addition to enthusiastic promotion of the field of hand therapy to tertiary institutions, other allied health bodies and associations.
Karen has a thorough working knowledge of the compensation systems in place in ...more

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<h5>Helen Burfield</h5>
Helen Burfield

Past President
PT, B App Sc (Physio), Post Grad Dip H&UL

Helen is currently the Past President for the AHTA after undertaking the role of President from February 2016 to February 2017.   She has been a full member since 1989.  Helen is a partner of Adelaide Sports Physiotherapy and is passionate about treating hand and upper limb conditions well and keeping hand and upper limb practitioners up to date with education and research.  Helen has a P.G. Diploma in Upper limb and Hand Rehab from Curtin University and has previously been a State and Divisional Representative  as well as Treasurer on the Management Committee.  Helen lectures both undergraduate and Master's physiotherapy students on hand and upper limb conditions.

Helen can be contacted by email:  pastpresident@ahta.com.au

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<h5>Nicola Cook</h5>
Nicola Cook

President Elect
PT, BSc (Hons) Physiotherapy

Nicola is the AHTA's President Elect and has been a Member of the AHTA since 2009. Nicola graduated with an Honours degree in Physiotherapy in 2000 and started specialising in Hand Therapy in 2003. Since then she has worked in large hospitals, private practices and as an MSc University Lecturer in the UK. Nicola attained the Accredited Hand Therapist (BAHT) certificate in 2008 and recertified in 2013. She has worked exclusively in private practice since moving to Sydney 8 years ago, working in a number of different practices including a very busy practice in central Sydney with renowned sugeons and internationally prominent clientele. Since starting a family, Nicola has continued her work in Hand Therapy by setting up a service with a Physio practice closer to home. Nicola became a published author in 'Pain': A Textbook for Health Professionals' in February 2014.

For the last 2 years, Nicola has been one of the AHTA's NSW State Coordinators, sitting on the State and Territories subcommittee, she has thoroughly enjoyed learning more about the work of the AHTA and being able to support and advocate for Hand Therapy Practitioners in NSW. Nicola is very passionate about hands and the profession and is excited and honoured to be a part of the AHTA Management Committee and contributing to the future direction of the AHTA and the practice of Hand Therapy.

Nicola can be contacted by email at presidentelect@ahta.com.au

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<h5>Sarah Dixon</h5>
Sarah Dixon

Executive Support Manager - Operations

Sarah holds the position of AHTA Executive Support Manager - Operations, and has been with us since July 2010.  Sarah brings extensive experience in customer service, program management, payroll managment, financial management, event management and business development. Sarah's role oversees the operations of the AHTA with a passion for and commitment to the objectives of the association.  Sarah is responsible for all activities within the association which contribute to the effective delivery of operations and services. With a focus on efficiency and productivity, the Executive Support Manager (Operations) will also oversee the delivery of high quality member services and operational support across all portfolios.

Sarah can be emailed at info@ahta.com.au

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<h5>Kate Noller</h5>
Kate Noller

Executive Support Manager - Strategy

Kate holds the position of Executive Support Manager - Strategy.  Kate has a diverse skillset and brings experience from both the public and not-for-profit sectors. Most recently Kate held a business development role with an incorporated association and has experience offering support services at an executive level.   Kate also has experience in payroll management, human resources, marketing, finance, events management, project management and business administration.

Kate is an integral part of the management team and is responsible for overseeing the delivery of projects across all the portfolios, ensuring alignment with strategic objectives and operational priorities.

You can reach Kate by email:  executiveadmin@ahta.com.au

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<h5>Veronica Dullens</h5>
Veronica Dullens

Marketing, Communications and Events Coordinator

Veronica holds the position Marketing, Communications and Events Coordinator and has a wealth of knowledge.

Veronica has more than 16' years experience working in not-for-profit organisations, primarily in events, communications and business development but also with experience in membership, finance, governance, executive support and advocacy. Veronica is a Certified Marketing Consultant and is about to complete an MBA (Marketing Management).

Veronica will be working closely with our marketing and communications portfolios as well as undertaking events management in various areas of the AHTA.

Veronica can be contacted at events@ahta.com.au

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<h5>David Parsons</h5>
David Parsons


Dave is our Treasurer and has been so since 2013. Dave has worked in the area of Hand and Upper Limb Rehabilitation since graduating from Curtin University in 2006. He has held jobs in both the public and private sector throughout his career. Dave is currently in a full-time role at Curtin University in Hand and Upper Limb Rehabilitation. He completed his Master of Business Administration in 2014 and is currently completing his PhD through Curtain University. Dave hopes that he can bring strong business acumen to the treasurer portfolio to ensure the high quality and strong financial position of the AHTA can continue.

Dave can be contacted by email at:  treasurer@ahta.com.au

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<h5>Olga Alkin</h5>
Olga Alkin

Secretary / Chair of Governance Committee

Olga has been a practitioner of hand therapy for over 13 years. She completed BHSc (Physiotherapy) degree at Auckland University and continued onto a Hand and Upper Limb training programme followed by a postgraduate degree in western Acupuncture.

Currently she owns her own private hand therapy practices in Noosa and Gympie. Her interests are in rehabilitation of overuse injuries including tenosynovitis, tendinopathies and arthritic conditions. Olga is passionate about hand therapy and was involved in NZAHT (New Zealand Association of Hand Therapy) as a secretary for four years prior to immigrating to Australia. She hopes to bring her experience and knowledge to the AHTA Management Committee and will strive to improve recognition of hand therapy as a specialty.

Olga can be contacted by email at:  secretary@ahta.com.au

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<h5>Katie Whittle</h5>
Katie Whittle

Membership Secretary
OT, CHT, Post Grad Dip H&UL

Katie graduated from University of Queensland as an Occupational Therapist in 1987.   She completed a post graduate diploma in Hand and Upper Limb Therapy through Curtin University in 1992 and has been a full member of AHTA since then.   Katie became a Certified Hand Therapist in 2007 after practising in the UK and Australia in both public and private sectors.   She has owned and managed private practices in Toowoomba and the Sunshine Coast since 1993.   Katie has recently held the position of mentor for Queensland and has been the AHTA Secretary / Chair of Governance for 2015/16. She is committed to the growth and acknowledgement of Hand Therapy as a specialty and is excited to be involved in the accreditation process.

Katie can be contacted by email at:  secretary@ahta.com.au

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<h5>Julia Wild</h5>
Julia Wild

Communications Officer

Julia has been a Member of the AHTA since 1993 and a Member of the Australian Physiotherapy Association since 1995. She has also been the Principal at her private practice, Southern Hand Therapy since 1995.

A Physiotherapist, graduating in 1987 from Cumberland College of Health Sciences (now University of Sydney), Julia has worked exclusively in Hand Therapy since 1991. Initially she worked in a multi-disciplinary unit in Hands and Plastic surgery at Prince of Wales Hospital, dealing with the rehabilitation of many hand replantation patients, where she formed the Hand Patient Support Group.

Julia went into private practice in 1995 establishing Southern Hand Therapy. It is through Julia's close work with Physios, GPs, Sports Physicians, Hand Surgeons, Orthopaedic Surgeons, Rheumatologists, Neurologists and Radiologists, that the practice has grown to involve 4 therapists. Julia has also been involved in the training of many new practitioners of hand therapy to gain the CHT qualification.

Julia is a dynamic, enthusiastic and dedicated therapist, and has served in many roles in the NSW Hand Therapy Interest Group including President, as well as Divisional Representative of NSW to the AHTA. She has presented to the Sports Medicine Programme (Uni NSW), Sutherland Shire GP's, NSW Hand Surgeon Association Conferences and Australian Hand Therapy Association Conferences, and Julia now joins the AHTA executive ...more

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<h5>Carla Bingham</h5>
Carla Bingham

Education Officer
Bachelor of Occupational Therapy


Carla has been working in the field of hand and upper limb rehabilitation since graduating from the University of Queensland in 1989. She has been a full member of the AHTA since 2007 and previously served on the Management committee as Membership Secretary from 2012-14. Initially Carla started working in public hospital hand units and spent 2 years working in the USA and Canada as a hand therapist. Carla started her own private practice in hand therapy on the Gold Coast in 2002, which now has 4 established clinics.

Carla has 2 daughters, her eldest has recently finished a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy (UQ) and has joined the team at Gold Coast Hand Therapy. Carla is passionate about education, mentoring and assisting junior therapists in developing skills in the area of hand therapy.


Carla can be contacted by email at education@ahta.com.au


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<h5>Amy Geach</h5>
Amy Geach

Marketing & Promotions Officer
BAppSc OT, M.Clin.Sc Hand & Upper Limb

Amy is a Life Member of the AHTA, The Director of Maida Learning, Riverina Hand Therapy and Riverina Kids Therapy.  Amy graduated from occupational therapy in 2000.  Since then she has worked in the field of hand therapy at RPA Hospital and Sydney Hospital.  In 2006, she moved to Wagga Wagga in regional NSW, and started a private practice called Riverina Hand Therapy.   Amy is very passionate about growing the awareness of hand therapy nationally, and supporting therapists in private practice to grow their business acumen.  She has developed this passion into a new arm of her business, founding Maida Learning in 2013 to deliver business education to allied health professionals.  Marketing in healthcare is one of her favourite topics, and she is excited to bring her knowledge and passion in this area to her role as Marketing & Promotions Officer for the AHTA.

Amy can be contacted by email at:  marketing@ahta.com.au

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<h5>Elizabeth Guiffre</h5>
Elizabeth Guiffre

State and Territory Affairs Officer
BAppSc Phty, CHT

Liz graduated as a Physiotherapist in 2006 and worked for several years in Western Sydney where she started working in the area of hand therapy. Liz relocated to Canberra in 2013 and completed her CHT in 2014 cementing her passion and specialisation in hand therapy. Liz has been a member of the AHTA since 2008 and became a Full member in 2014. When Liz relocated to Canberra she advocated for the ACT to have their own state and territory representative and after performing in this role for the past two years she is looking forward to moving into the State and Territories Affair’s Officer role and contributing back to this organisation and the hand therapy profession.

Liz currently works across both the public and private sectors at Canberra Hospital and in her own private practice Canberra Hand Therapy.  Over the past 2 years Liz has been the ACT divisional representative of the AHTA.

Liz can be contacted by email at stateaffairs@ahta.com.au

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