Our Board

Board & Executive


Margaret Scott


Margaret Scott

Margaret Scott was appointed to the Board of Parkinson’s NSW in November 2019 and President in February 2021.

She has more than 30 years of experience in senior fundraising roles for a variety of health and disability related not-for-profit organisations. In addition, she has operated her own business as a fundraising consultant since 2013.

Margaret was on the Board of the Fundraising Institute of Australia from 1998 to 2008. She held a number of key roles on that Board over the years including Chair, Vice Chair, and Chair of multiple Committees.

She was also on the Bloom Asia Board from 2017 to 2019.


Janina Jancu


Janina Jancu

Janina Jancu was appointed to the Board of Parkinson’s NSW in November 2019.

She has more than 30 years of experience as a senior executive in the not for profit, government and corporate sectors. A qualified lawyer she brings extensive experience in the areas of finance, risk management and corporate governance.

She is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, served as a director of UNSW and has acted in an advisory capacity on not for profit boards.

Janina has previously held roles with Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute, UNSW, the City of Sydney and Spotless Services Limited. She is currently the Director of Operations at ReachOut Australia.


Stephen Schiemer


Stephen Schiemer

Stephen Schiemer was elected to the Board of Parkinson’s NSW in October 2018. He is a fitness instructor and entrepreneur who has been living with Parkinson’s for the past eight years.

In addition to experiencing Parkinson’s himself, Stephen runs tailored fitness programs for other people living with the disease.

He has a Bachelor of Business degree and 30 years of experience in running his own businesses, including finance, risk management, logistics, people management, training, and digital marketing.


Nicole Schleicher


Nicole Schleicher

Nicole Schleicher was appointed to the Board of Parkinson’s NSW in November 2019.

She has more than 20 years of experience in key roles within the not-for-profit sector. Her experience includes managing service delivery and systems, quality, strategic projects, research and evaluation and administration.

Nicole has held program development, operational and policy management roles with The Smith Family, Baptist Community Services NSW, Wesley Mission, and The Benevolent Society.

She is currently General Manager of National Services for RedKite

John Watkins - AM

The Hon. John Watkins AM


John Watkins AM

John Watkins AM was appointed to the Board of Parkinson’s NSW in August 2021.

John has had a rewarding and successful career with extensive experience in senior leadership roles including Deputy Premier of NSW, Minister, CEO, University Chancellor, Board Director and Chair.

John was CEO of Alzheimer’s Australia NSW for nine years retiring from that position in October 2017.

John graduated in Arts and Law from the University of NSW. He also holds a Master of Arts from Macquarie University and a Diploma of Education from Sydney Teachers College. He worked as a teacher for 16 years until his election to Parliament in 1995.


David Veness


David Veness

David was appointed Parkinson’s NSW Ambassador in November 2021 in recognition of his tireless work on the Board.  and will continue to advocate for and raise awareness of Parkinson’s.

In his Ambassador role he will continue to advocate for and raise awareness of Parkinson’s – as he did so effectively as a former President and Vice President of Parkinson’s NSW.

David joined the Board of Parkinson’s NSW as non-metropolitan representative in 2016 with a desire to represent country areas of NSW. In 2018 David was elected President and then Vice President in 2021.

He is a passionate advocate for people living with Parkinson’s in rural and regional areas and is dedicated to funding and deploying more Parkinson’s Specialist Nurses across the state of NSW.

During his time on the Board of Parkinson’s NSW David was instrumental in securing three Parkinson’s Specialist Nurse positions in Northern NSW, Northern Sydney and Southern NSW Local Health Districts.

David also champions Parkinson’s Support Groups and their benefits.

When he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s he immediately joined his local Support Group in Bathurst. He strongly believes in and plays an active role in all of the group’s activities. He enjoys exercise and encourages all those with Parkinson’s to try and exercise regularly.


Jo-Anne Reeves

Chief Executive Officer

Jo-Anne Reeves

Jo-Anne Reeves has more than thirty years of experience in the for-purpose and related sectors in Australia.

She worked in a variety of senior and consulting roles including communications, fundraising, bequest management and corporate relations before being appointed CEO of Parkinson’s NSW in early 2017.

Prior to taking up her current role, Jo-Anne was General Manager of Fundraising and Marketing for Disability Services Australia. She has a wealth of experience in the for-purpose sector and has worked with organisations such as Vision Australia, the University of New South Wales, The Westmead Children’s Hospital and the New South Wales Breast Cancer Institute.

In her role as CEO of Parkinson’s NSW, Jo-Anne is responsible for diversifying sources of funding to enable the expansion of services for people living with Parkinson’s. She is strongly focused on advocating and seeking funding for services across the State to ensure people have equity of access to be able to live the life they choose.

Other key projects she is directing include the placement of more community-based Parkinson Neurological Nurses, the development of stronger governance and more open communication with the Support Groups across the state and forging industry partnerships.


Mary Kay Walker

Chief Operating Officer

Mary Kay Walker

Mary Kay Walker is the Chief Operating Officer of Parkinson’s NSW Ltd.
In that capacity she is Deputy to the CEO and a key member of the Senior Leadership Team – responsible for planning, implementing, managing, and controlling all operational and financial-related activities of Parkinson’s NSW.

Mary Kay joined the organisation in 2018 following a 32-year career in key finance and administration roles in Australia and the United States. Her sector experience spans superannuation, credit management, retail, commercial aviation, and accounting.
She holds a Bachelor of Science with a double major in Mathematics and Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Psychology from the University of Sydney. In addition, she has a Diploma in Securities and Financial Markets from the Financial Services Institute of Australasia and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.