The World Parkinson Coalition (WPC) announced the appointment of eight new Science Ambassadors and fifteen Patient Advocate Ambassadors for the 6th World Parkinson Congress. They will act as Ambassadors for the WPC in the two years leading up to the World Parkinson Congress in June 2022 in Barcelona, Spain. These groups of Ambassadors, one representing people living with Parkinson’s and the other representing scientists dedicated to researching Parkinson’s, spread the word about each World Parkinson Congress, encourage people to attend and submit abstracts, and are available to speak about the WPC to your group and community.
Eight Ambassadors from six countries who speak seven different languages between them and who have been researching Parkinson’s for more than 96 years combined have been selected as Science Ambassadors for the 2022 World Parkinson’s Congress.
These eight Science Ambassadors represent six countries and have nearly 100 years of combined research experience working to advance our understand of Parkinson’s. They not only spend their time as professionals working to unlock the mysteries of Parkinson’s with outstanding research, they are connected to the global Parkinson’s community and support and understand the value of basic scientists interacting and learning directly from people who live with Parkinson’s.
Congratulations to Dr Richard Gordon from the University of Queensland
Richard Gordon, PhD (Australia):
Richard is a Group Leader in Clinical Neuroscience at The University of Queensland, Australia. He has been working in the field of Parkinson’s research since commencing his PhD on how the immune system and inflammation contribute to Parkinson’s disease, and how the harmful effects of inflammation on the brain can be reduced. His recent work has focused on inflammasome pathways, which have been shown to orchestrate inflammation in Parkinson’s and other brain diseases. His journey to understand what causes Parkinson’s, and how it can be stopped, has spanned three continents so far. Richard is also a Certified Toxicologist with the American Board of Toxicology and has a keen interest in how environmental factors, such as chemical exposures, can contribute to Parkinson’s disease. He currently leads the Translational Neuroscience Laboratory at the University of Queensland. His team uses clinical studies and experimental models to identify mechanisms and pathways involved in the disease with the ultimate aim of developing new treatments and biomarkers for earlier diagnosis.
Patient Advocate Ambassadors
The WPC 2022 Ambassadors were selected from a highly competitive pool of applicants who all live with Parkinson’s. Combined they’ve been living with Parkinson’s for 101 years making them experts on a disease that is often misunderstood and complex to diagnose and can be challenging to live with. They are experts on living with Parkinson’s because they live with it 24/7. They have all attended at least one past World Parkinson Congress and found the WPC experience to be life changing.
Geoff Constable, C.Eng Naval Architecture. RPEQ (Australia) :
Geoff is a Naval Architect, but now work in the design teams for major infrastructure projects across Australia and also globally. Outside of work, my passion is all things Parkinson’s and I have developed a strong team network to get things done.
I would encourage people to go to the WPC because, in simple terms …you are going to meet a huge collective of very diverse people with Parkinson’s all with very important stories and experiences to share and best of all they will be interested in you. If you want to light up your activist side, learn how to raise more awareness, live a better life, feel connected … then this is the place to be.
Sandra Elms (Australia):
My background is in Education. I was a Biology/ Science teacher in London UK for 17 years. Prior to that, I was involved in medical research at University College London. When I came to Australia I taught at a Private Girls school in Sydney, Science and HSC Biology. I was also a year coordinator and looked after a year group from year 7 to year 12. I also ran the Social Justice group at the school which involved fundraising, event planning which included a special Closing the Gap event to raise awareness of Indigenous health issues.
I would like to encourage and interest more people to attend the WPC. I believe it is a unique event because of the way it is run and presented. Unlike many conferences which discuss Parkinson’s disease, but do not encourage people with Parkinson’s to attend, the WPC is open to everyone. I have been privileged to be able to go twice to WPC and would strongly encourage others to go.
View the complete list of WPC Ambassadors and their bios.
About the World Parkinson Coalition® and WPC 2022
The World Parkinson Coalition Inc. provides an international forum for learning about the latest scientific discoveries, medical practices, caregiver initiatives and advocacy work related to Parkinson’s disease. The triennial World Parkinson Congresses provide a space for the global Parkinson’s community of researchers, clinicians, health care professionals, people with Parkinson’s and their care partners to meet in person, network, and discuss advances in Parkinson’s research, improve understanding and promote advocacy worldwide, while influencing future research and care options. The WPC 2022 will attract more than 4,500 delegates.
Learn more about the World Parkinson’s Congress.