Our Ambassadors

Michael Milton, Paralympic Gold Medallist

Michael Milton

Michael Milton is one of Australia's best-known athletes. His four-gold-medal haul at the Salt Lake Winter Paralympic Games endeared him to a sport-loving nation and earned him the title of Laureus World Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability.

Michael was first diagnosed with cancer at age nine, which resulted in the amputation of his left leg.  He was subsequently diagnosed with oesophageal cancer in 2007. It was a huge shock to Michael and his family and the initial prognosis was not good.  With a 35% survival rate, oesophagael cancer in one of the world's deadliest.

Michael received chemotherapy and radiotherapy and had radical surgery later that year and is now in remission.

As a survivor of both childhood and adult cancer, Michael is passionate about supporting organisations like the National Centre for Cancer Survivorship.  Despite often feeling unwell, with fatigue being a major issue, he continues to challenge himself physically in the hope that continuing fitness will keep the cancer at bay.
 

 

 

Heather Mitchell, Australian Actress

Heather is one of Australia's leading actors appearing regularly in theatre, film and television. With a career spanning more than three decades, she has performed in hundreds of productions and countless screen appearances including 'Rake', 'A Place to Call Home’, 'The Great Gatsby', 'Spellbinder', 'Strictly Ballroom the Musical', 'Hayfever' and 'Away'.
                                    
Heather was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004 but today is a proud cancer survivor and advocate for the National Centre for Cancer Survivorship.
 

Testimonials

"At first a felt a bit funny about talking to a lady about my problems after my cancer treatment, but my doctor is really nice and really understanding.  Plus she is an oncologist so she understands all the medical stuff that goes along with cancer treatment so I didn't have to explain things to her the way I did to my GP.  I felt like she really understood where I was coming from and gave me some good strategies to help with my issues.  And she wrote a care plan and sent a copy to my GP as well, so hopefully now when I go to see him he will feel like he is better able to treat me."

Anthony, prostate cancer survivor
"At 26 I was diagnosed with a rare form of ovarian cancer... having survived this (thanks to a great medical team), I ‘floundered’ for many years with the resulting impact of early menopause, fertility issues and general fatigue. Even worse, I felt extreme guilt that I should be able to overcome these issues easily as I survived when others didn’t, I really didn’t have the right to ever complain again. This impacted directly on my confidence, self esteem and identity. ……I am now 46, have 2 children, a partner, a career and a good life.  However, the struggle I had undergone, in pretty much isolation, has been hard.  Even friends and family who were great during treatment felt I should ‘just move on’.  The establishment of this centre is a great comfort as it shows there is now a greater awareness of cancer survivor issues to hopefully ensure better long term support for people who have had cancer."

Melinda, ovarian cancer survivor 
"I am aware of the National Centre for Cancer Survivorship and support them in their mission to find new and better ways to care for cancer survivors through research. With the high number of Australians now surviving cancer or living with ongoing cancer for many years, we need to better understand the health issues confronting this group and develop interventions to address their unique and often complex needs. As someone who has worked in the medical oncology setting for 20 years, I believe the National Centre for Cancer Survivorship is leading the way in this work."

Dr Elizabeth Hovey, MB BS FRACP MSC - Medical Oncologist, SESIAHS & UNSW, Prince of Wales Hospital
"As Director of the Kids Cancer Centre, Sydney Children’s Hospital and Professor of Paediatrics at the University of NSW, I have watched the development of the National Centre for Cancer Survivorship over the last few years. I strongly support the opportunity the Centre provides to bring together research focusing on survivors of childhood cancer with that focusing on adult survivors. In both areas it is clear that there are many unresolved challenges in understanding the health care needs of cancer survivors, and developing best practice interventions for both prevention and treatment of those problems. I believe wholeheartedly that the work that being undertaken through the Centre will benefit both kids and adult survivors people for many years to come."

Professor Glenn Marshall, AM, MB, BS, FRACP, MD Paediatric Haematologist & Oncologist, Director, Kids Cancer Centre, Sydney Children’s Hospital