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Hearing the future – a showcase of collaboration and innovation

Left to right: Kim Terrell Hearing Australia, Padraig Kitterick NAL, Megan White Hearing Australia, Dr Brent Edwards NAL

The contribution Hearing Australia and the National Acoustic Laboratories (NAL) have made to the nation’s hearing health was on full display at the Hearing Hub recently, serving as a powerful reminder of the importance of collaboration with our partners to improve the lives of people with hearing loss.
Hosted by Hearing Australia and NAL as part of their 75th anniversary celebrations, the Hearing the Future conference provided the opportunity to discuss key trends and issues in hearing care. In attendance were experts and alumni of the hearing health care community including many Hearing Hub colleagues.
Across the day, the event highlighted the amazing amount of collaboration, innovation, and transformation that has occurred in hearing health over the last 75 years. It also drew attention to the importance of hearing loss prevention efforts as the hearing health sector moves towards the future.
Opening the event, conference host, NAL Director, Dr Brent Edwards, acknowledged the deep resumes amongst the audience which included researchers, clinicians, and industry partners who have been instrumental in improving the lives of people with hearing loss.
“We couldn’t ask for better partners”, said Brent. “I’ve never seen so much transformation as is happening in our industry today. Continuing to work closely with our partners is instrumental to ensuring Australia remains a global leader in hearing health.”
Hearing Australia Managing Director Kim Terrell said none of Hearing Australia and NAL’s achievements would be possible without the support of our partners. “It’s only through our collaboration, shared passion and ideas that we can continue to improve the hearing health of the nation.”
The Shepherd Centre’s General Manager of Clinical Programs, Dr Aleisha Davis was one of the hearing care professionals who attended saying it was a chance to not only focus on where the field has come from but where we need to go. “The talks raised some areas we all need to be considering over the next five years,” said Aleisha.
Memorable moments
Hearing the Future was a true reflection of the incredible skills and talent in our industry, and a vivid reminder of why we do what we do. This was brought to life by the many presentations, along with personal stories from colleagues and clients we’ve supported along the way.
Their stories were just some of the many memorable moments throughout the day. From the Welcome to Country from Gadigal Elder, Uncle Allen Madden, and performance by the Koomurri Dance Troupe, and the special presentation from Deafness Forum Australia to announce their three new Honorary Life Members, Barry MacKinnon, Ann Porter AM and Margaret Dewberry.
The compelling line-up of presentations demonstrated what we have done, and will do in the future, to improve the hearing health of anyone in need – from babies and children, adults and older people, to those with complex needs, and our First Nations clients and communities.
Inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award
Following the conference, an anniversary dinner was held to celebrate Hearing Australia and NAL’s 75th anniversary and to thank our partners for their ongoing support.
A highlight of the evening was listening to Simone Punch, one of Hearing Australia’s specialist audiologists and clinical coaches, and Professor Greg Leigh AO, Director of the NextSense Institute, sharing their personal and professional insights and reflections on our anniversary.
Despite his busy schedule, the Hon. Bill Shorten MP, Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme and Minister for Government Services, attended the dinner and presented Hearing Australia’s inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award to Professor Greg Leigh.
As a leader in our industry for over 40 years, Greg has made an enormous contribution to improving the hearing health of Australians and is a very worthy recipient. Hearing Australia is committed to making this an annual award, recognising the achievements of individuals and organisations in the field.

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