The John Studdy Award is Multiple Sclerosis Australia’s most prestigious Award, given annually, in recognition of outstanding consistent and selfless provision of meritorious service to people living with MS, at either National or State/Territory level, preferably over a period in excess of ten years or for other factors considered by the committee as worthy of the award. The standard of this service is to be of such high-status that ‘the nominee has made, or is making, a tangible difference’ for the benefit of people living with MS and/or their families or carers.
The late John Studdy was a tireless advocate for the multiple sclerosis community in Australia and was dedicated to advancing the wellbeing of people living with MS and the search for a cure. MS Australia’s John Studdy award is for individuals who, like John Studdy, have made a significant contribution to the MS movement in Australia.
2018 John Studdy Winners - Ros Harman & Dr. Mary Webb:
We are delighted to announce that there are two recipients of the John Studdy award for this year: Ros Harman and Dr. Mary Webb.
Ros Harman was first diagnosed with MS at the age of 26. Her early career included being a school teacher and a Human Resources and Training Manager for a medium-sized company. Many years ago Ros initiated and pioneered a parents’ support group, and is widely felt to be an inspirational role model for people with MS and for women in particular.
She has served on the MSWA Board since 2004, and is an ambassador for MSWA, representing the organisation on all forms of electronic media and an active ambassador within political circles. Ros is the Vice President of the Board and the Chair of Member (Client) Services Committee and the Chair of the Research Committee. Her stewardship has led MSWA’s position as the leading funder of MS research. Her past roles within MSWA have also included Editor of the MS Bulletin magazine and Director roles that included Fundraising.
Ros is a regular public speaker at events and functions, promoting the involvement and participation of people with disabilities.
Ros was unable to attend the announcement so her award was accepted by Marcus Stafford (MSWA CEO) George Pampacos (MSWA President) in her absence.
Dr Mary Webb:
(Pictured here on the right, receiving The John Studdy Award from MS Australia President, Dr. Annette Carruthers, on the left.)
Mary was diagnosed with MS over twenty years ago, when her two children were babies. Since then, she has been actively involved with her local MS society and the wider MS community.
She has served the ACT and National MS communities as a volunteer for 16 years in many capacities.
Her official roles have included:
- Director of the MS Society of ACT (2002-2008)
- Vice President of MS Society of ACT (2003-2008)
- Member of the MSL ACT S/NSW Regional Advisory Board (2008-2017)
- Convenor of the ACT PwMS Group since 2008.
In 2006 she also began running the PwMS Group at Gloria McKerrow House, and continues to run it once a month; also providing some informal social support for several PwMS, and as Peer support volunteer (phone support.)
Other achievements in this area include being awarded the 2012 ACT Volunteer of the Year (through nomination by Mirimba Kovner/MSL), being made the ACT Disability Advisory Council member (requested to nominate by MSL) from 2011–2014, and as ACT Medicare Local Board (Consumer Director) (requested to nominate by MSL) from 2012–2014.
Mary is also a strong supporter of the role of MS Research Australia and is a member of the Steering Committee of the Australian Multiple Sclerosis Longitudinal Study which she joined in July 2014. In 2017, she also served as an Observer on Social and Applied Research (SAR) panel of the Research Management Council (RMC), and in 2018 as a Voting member of SAR panel of RMC.
Mary has been an active MS National Advocate for MS Australia since 2004. In this role, she has attended many MS Advocacy meetings at Parliament House Canberra and on occasions been a spokesperson, including media interviews, on behalf the MS Advocates Group.
As a person with MS, Mary has always and continues, in all her capacities, to support and share her wide knowledge and experience of MS with others affected by MS. She has willingly mentored, by telephone, other people living with MS who have sought support and advice, although they have not met face to face.
Mary has a background in biological research and science education, and currently works as a freelance editor. With this professional background, she feel strongly about educating people about MS, and also closely follows the progress being made in MS research.