May 14, 2024  Print

The Westmead Institute for Medical Research (WIMR) is pleased to announce the appointment of Ms Naseema Sparks to its Board of Directors.

WIMR is a world-class multi-disciplinary medical research institute based in Westmead, Sydney. Its purpose is to improve prevention, diagnosis, and treatment approaches for some of the greatest disease challenges of our time, and to translate these findings into life-saving patient care. This includes cancer, heart disease, mental health, diabetes, antibiotic resistance, kidney and liver disease, and viral infections, to name a few.

Ms Sparks brings a wealth of experience in Chair and Non-Executive Director roles, with relevant expertise in B2C and B2B companies experiencing fast growth. She has a background at both operational and board level in strategic marketing.

Ms Sparks began her career in the pharmaceutical industry with roles including at GSK Australia. As a qualified pharmacist and Master of Pharmacology, she worked in the clinical trials, drug registration and information division of Glaxo and progressively moved to marketing/sales. She was Director of Marketing Strategy for the pharma division when she made a career change into strategic consulting with PwC in Melbourne.

After completing the MBA at Melbourne Business School, she moved into the marketing and advertising industry with senior management and strategy roles at various agencies in the UK and Australia. Her most recent executive role was as Australian Managing Director and a Global Partner of communications company, M&C Saatchi.

Ms Sparks’ first non-executive director role was in 2007 with a place on the board of Blackmores. She has since served on boards of a diverse range of companies including NYSE & ASX listed companies, private companies, Government statutory authorities, not-for-profit arts, health and education. She currently chairs two such pre-IPO organisations: Openmarkets Group Ltd in the fintech category; and Homart Pharmaceutical Group in the vitamins, supplements and minerals sector.

Ms Sparks’ other board appointments include ASX listed company Australian Vintage Wines Ltd, and Knight Frank Australia.

Chair of the WIMR Board of Directors, Mr Philip Chronican, commented: “I am delighted to welcome Naseema Sparks to the WIMR Board. Naseema’s expertise across a breadth of industries will be an outstanding asset in supporting WIMR with its vision to liberate people from the burden of disease through transformational research discoveries.”

The WIMR Board comprises of the following members:
  • Mr Philip Chronican – Chair
  • Professor Katherine Belov
  • Ms Maryanne Graham
  • Dr Elizabeth Jazwinska
  • Mr Graeme Loy
  • Professor Philip O’Connell
  • Mr Michael Rose AM
  • Ms Naseema Sparks AM
  • Ms Julia Strelitz
  • Professor Robyn Ward AM