Text: Those who go above and beyond.

Those who go above and beyond

Interplast’s Honoured Member recognition is designed to promote the accomplishments of distinguished supporters to the wider Interplast community, and to formalise an ongoing relationship with these valued individuals.

In 2023-24, we proudly recognise the following dedicated individuals as honoured members:

  • Dr Tim Proudman
  • Ms Elizabeth Wright
  • Ms Jenny Ball
  • Associate Professor David Pescod
  • Ms Suzanne Caragianis
  • Mr Michael Butler.

Dr Tim Proudman

Dr Proudman and Dr Jamtsho stand together at the top of a mountain.

Dr Tim Proudman & Dr Sonam Jamtsho in Bhutan.

Tim Proudman is a South Australian based specialist plastic surgeon who commenced volunteering with Interplast in 2015. He currently serves as the Country Coordinator for Bhutan and has been instrumental in shaping the success of this program.

His overseas deployments with Interplast to Bhutan include:

  • May 2015
  • October 2015
  • April 2016
  • April 2017
  • October 2017
  • April 2018
  • April 2019.

Following the emergence of COVID-19, Tim commenced remote mentoring of Bhutan’s first plastic surgeon, Dr Sonam Jamtsho. With the support of the Interplast office, he arranged for Sonam to continue his surgical training in both India and Nepal, and facilitated a 12-month paid placement at Adelaide’s premier hospitals in 2023, to ensure Sonam received world-class training.

Further to Tim’s commitment to clinical excellence, he has hosted two major fundraising events for Interplast, raising in excess of $200,000 to support our work in Bhutan. He is a regular presenter at Rotary Clubs, corporate partners and community supporters and regularly champions Interplast, including in relevant media publications.

Most recently, Interplast recognised Tim’s commitment to building surgical capacity by creating the Tim Proudman Scholarship for Emerging Surgeons. In 2023 this was rightly awarded to Dr Sonam Jamtsho.

Ms Elizabeth Wright

Four women stand together and smile for the camera. Elizabeth holds a gift basket with flowers, while Emma holds her certificate recognising her honoured membership.

Rotary Coordinator for Interplast, Janette Etherington, with Elizabeth Wright and her two daughters, Emma and Helen during an event earlier this year.

Elizabeth Wright is a New Zealand based Rotarian, and current Interplast District Chair in Rotary District 9930. In this capacity Elizabeth has been coordinating and organising fundraising efforts for Interplast since 2017. To date, her fundraising efforts have raised more than NZD $150,000.

Her efforts have supported Interplast teams to travel to Fiji, Myanmar and Solomon Islands. She further self-funded trips with Interplast volunteer teams to both Fiji and Myanmar in order to capture content to share with the broader Rotary audience. As part of this initiative, she supported a New Zealand based videographer, Chris Hillock to accompany a surgical team to Fiji in 2018. His content became the basis of Interplast’s tax appeal that year. Most recently, Elizabeth raised a further NZD $10,000 to purchase a specialist cleft training mannequin – a vital piece of training equipment used by Dr Semesa Matanaicake in Fiji to training surgeons from across the Pacific.

In addition to Elizabeth’s support and advocacy, Elizabeth acts as a mentor to other New Zealand based Interplast District Chairs across both the North and South Islands of the Country.

Ms Jenny Ball

Two women sit next to each other and smile at the camera.

Jenny Ball with Fijian physiotherapist, Maria Waloki.

Jenny Ball is a Tasmanian-based Physiotherapist, specialising in upper limb injuries and burns treatment. Having first volunteered with Interplast in 2000, Jenny has since undertaken 16 overseas programs on behalf of the organisation, in both Fiji and Nepal.

Jenny is a regular participant in clinical programs. Additionally, Jenny:

  • Established the Allied Health Training Program delivered to final year physiotherapy students at Fiji National University (a highly recognised Interplast program).
  • Is a member of the Emergency Management of Serve Burns Faculty in Fiji – a joint initiative between Interplast and the Australian and New Zealand Burns Association.
  • Acts as Interplast’s Allied Health Focal Point for the wider Pacific region.
  • Is a member of both the Allied Health Working Group and Clinical Governance Committee.

Further to Jenny’s commitment above, Jenny has regularly developed teaching resources used by many Interplast Allied Health professionals and international partners. Together with Fijian physiotherapist, Akisi, Jenny is currently undertaking a pilot (under the auspice of Interplast) to better record burns injuries.

Finally, Jenny is a strong mentor to a number of international partners and has personally hosted them in her home, clinical setting and hospital in Tasmania at the request of Interplast.

In many cases, she has financially supported the funding short-falls to support international partners to attend global conferences, the most recent being to support a Fijian physiotherapist to travel to London for specialist hand training.

Associate Professor David Pescod

A profile picture of Associate Professor David Pescod.

David Pescod is a Victorian anaesthestist who first volunteered with Interplast in 2003. He has since undertaken 23 overseas programs to countries including:

  • Fiji
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Myanmar
  • Bangladesh
  • Samoa
  • Nepal
  • Mongolia.

In addition to David’s clinical service to Interplast, he:

  • Is the current Country Coordinator for Mongolia.
  • Is an active member of Interplast’s Clinical Governance Committee.
  • Regularly supports funding applications through his connection to the Australian Society of Anaesthetists and the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists. In this capacity he has helped to facilitate over $100,000 worth of funding.
  • Wrote the text book for Mongolian anaesthetists and regularly delivers clinical training through Interplast’s connection to the Mongolian Society of Anaesthesiologists.
  • Proactively supports the writing of Interplast’s clinical guidelines, especially as they relate to safe anaesthesia, pain management, drug selection and clinical governance.

Perhaps David’s most significant contribution, although harder to measure, is his willingness to connect Interplast with significant stakeholders and to develop a pipeline of anaesthetists for Interplast programs.

Ms Suzanne Caragianis

Suzanne bandages the hand of a young girl.

Suzanne Caragianis treating a young girl in Bhutan, 2018.

Suzanne is a specialist hand therapist based in South Australia who began travelling with Interplast programs to Bhutan in 2014. Following her first deployment with Interplast she has completed seven programs.

In fact, it was through Suzanne’s advocacy to Interplast that Bhutan became an official partner to the organisation and expanded into its current programming mix.

Further to Suzanne’s work as a therapist on Interplast programs:

  • Alongside Dr Tim Proudman she has been instrumental in organizing high quality Bhutanese fundraisers; raising alongside Tim in excess of $200,000 for our work.
  • Suzanne regularly privately funds for Bhutanese therapists to travel to Australia, India or London to undertake training in world-class facilities.
  • She home-hosted Dr Sonam Jamtsho in Adelaide upon his arrival and coordinated the selection and fitout of his current residence whilst he undertakes further training in Adelaide.
  • Coordinated the establishment of high-level government meetings for Interplast’s CEO and accompanied him to most appointments in this capacity.

In recognition of Suzanne’s commitment to Bhutan, she has been recognised by both the Australian and Bhutanese Governments with honours, and the World Federation of Hand Therapists.

Whilst Suzanne’s work may be less public than some of the other nominees, she is a strong advocate for Interplast and regularly presents on our behalf at Rotary Clubs, schools and other groups. She has also undertaken media engagements for Interplast upon request.

Mr Michael Butler

Michael Butler is a long-term support of Interplast, however due to the non-clinical nature of his role, records are less detailed than some of the other nominees. It is estimated that since his involvement with Interplast, Michael has facilitated donations in excess of $500,000 through his connection.

In 2018, Michael introduced the former Chief Executive Officer, together with then Deputy CEO, Cameron Glover to the family offices of a number of significant supporters.

Beyond Michael’s philanthropic pursuits, he briefly served on an Interplast fundraising committee and has provided strong support to past Interplast President, Keith Mutimer about engaging with family offices.

In the initial stages of the Supporter Engagement Committee, Michael had indicated a willingness to serve on that body, but circumstances at the time prevented him from joining during its formative stages. Despite that, to this day, Michael still talks with Interplast’s Chief Executive Officer and reviews submissions and concept notes upon request, providing strategic advice when called upon.

Whilst a relatively private supporter of Interplast, Michael is only too happy to facilitate introductions through his vast commercial network and recommend Interplast for consideration by those seeking to make philanthropic contributions.