Governance & Board

The purpose of the Board of Directors is to advise, govern and oversee policy and direction, and assist with the leadership and general promotion of CDH Australia so as to support the organisation’s mission and needs. All board positions are filled by volunteers. Scroll down to get to know more about our Board.

CDHA Constitiution

Charity Information

Board of Directors


Co-president – Joshua Kirkwood


JoshJosh is Dad to angel CDHer Sean. Josh joined NAB in October 2014 as Executive Manager, Finance and Strategy. In this role he supports the Group Executive, Finance & Strategy. Prior to this he was Australian equity strategist at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, where he provided advice to institutional investors, domestically and abroad. Josh began his career at the Reserve Bank of Australia where he held management roles in the Financial Markets area of the Bank. He is CFA qualified and has a Masters of Science (Economics) from the London School of Economics (with Distinction) and Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting and Economics, with Class I honours and University Medal) from Macquarie University.



Co-president – Tara Gallo

Tara Gallo

I came into contact with CDH Australia when I was pregnant with my son, Sean. He was diagnosed with CDH at his 20 week scan, and died from the condition at 8 days old. The support I received during Sean’s pregnancy, short life and after his death was hugely helpful and I will be forever grateful to CDH Australia and the wonderful people associated with the organisation.

I have ~15 years business consulting experience in the financial services and retail industries, with a focus on strategy development, operational design, strategy execution and project and team management. Currently, I am an Associate Director at Macquarie Bank, where I work in the Business Improvement and Strategy team. Previous roles include the Head of the Business and Private Banking Strategy team at the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and a Manager in Deloitte’s Strategy Consulting practice. I have my Masters of Economics from Macquarie University and graduated from Ohio Northern University with a BSBA of International Business and Economics, and Spanish (University Medal).

As co-president, I would like to see CDH Australia continue to grow and support more families at all stages of their CDH journey.




I was born with undiagnosed left-sided CDH in 1985. Since birth, I have had two open Nissen Fundoplication surgeries (including diaphragm repairs) in 1996 & 2001, bowel obstruction surgery in 1997 and was diagnosed with Barrett’s Oesophagus in 2006.

My Mum discovered CDHA in 2001 and we attended the first annual forum. My family and I value the continued support we receive from CDHA from the first meeting to today. I admire the dedication of the organisation and the support it provides to so many families and adult CDHers.

In 2007 I graduated university with a bachelor’s degree in Commerce (majors in Finance, Financial Planning and Economics). I have been working in the Financial Planning industry for the past 9 years and I am currently the manager of an Associate Adviser Team in a boutique firm.

I feel privileged to be the first CDHer to join the board. As Vice President, I want to assist the organisation in promoting awareness, raising funds and supporting families in line with CDHA’s vision for no family to face CDH alone.


SECRETARY – Courtney Vodopic


I came into contact with CDH Australia when our first-born, Lucy, was born with previously undiagnosed CDH. The people I’ve met through CDHA have come to be part of our extended family, and have been an immense support to my family and I through Lucy’s first years. I am enjoying volunteering as a family support contact in Victoria, and when the opportunity arose to join the Board, I felt that the time was right.

Currently on Maternity Leave from the Department of Justice, my work background has seen me working primarily in counselling and management roles over the past 8 years. I am enjoying being able to blend my work experience with my passion for supporting CDH families whilst being part of the CDHA board.



TREASURER – John Hurley


My involvement in CDH has just commenced through a friend of Margaret, our President. I am retired now after 27 years with the State Bank/Commonwealth Bank as a Branch Manager and then as the Manager of a College in Parkville, Melbourne running the administration and maintenance for 17 years.

I have also volunteered with The Compassionate Friends (TCF) in Victoria as a board member for eight years, State President for four years and National President of TCF Australia for seven years. TCF is a support group for parents who have lost a child, my son having passed away in an accident overseas in July 2000.

I am married with four grandchildren and am looking forward to offering support to the organisation during my time on the Board.


Board Member

Sharon Knott – Board Member & Family Liaison Officer Support Services lead

1452114_670181623005649_1413338910_n-1I came into contact with CDH Australia shortly after my son Liam was born with right sided CDH in 2003. The support I received was priceless and  I  will be forever grateful.  My way of giving back to this amazing group,  was to volunteer and in 2009 I took on the role of Family Liaison Coordinator.

My previous roles within the media saw me working to a deadline and juggling many hats.  I believe this skill helps with my current role of liaising with support contacts and our CDH families and juggling my two children, Chelsea-Rose, Liam and a business. Working alongside my fellow directors, I hope we can build on our support network to include medical professionals in every state and extend our support services.