The AVA began in 1991. It is an umbrella organisation for all involved in the care of the human voice including speech pathologists, singing teachers and voice teachers, ENT surgeons, voice scientists and other professionals and amateur voice users.

Through meetings, professional development events, publications, lobbying and representation, the AVA aims to provide services to its members in a variety of ways; 

  • To act as a central point of focus for many disciplines involved in voice and promote the field of voice in Australia;
  • To encourage links between artistic, clinical and scientific disciplines related to voice;
  • To promote education and training in the clinical care of voice, as well as vocal performance and voice science;
  • To promote research into voice.

About Us

Meet the National Board of AVA

This stellar group of individuals strive to serve the members of Australian Voice Association by meeting regularly to organise events and webinars as well as directing advocacy for voice related issues in the Australian community.

Members of the national board volunteer their time and talents, serving two year terms.

Associate Professor Diane Hughes (NSW)


A/Prof Diane Hughes is a researcher and lecturer in Vocal Studies and Music at Macquarie University, Australia. Di has an extensive background in contemporary popular singing pedagogy, and has been an invited speaker at conferences and seminars. Her work within the industry has involved artist development and recording. Di's research interests include vocal health, artistry, pedagogy, recording, performance and singing in schools. She is an advocate for the development of cross-curriculum voice studies in school education. In 2014, she received an Australian Office of Learning and Teaching Citation for her contribution to student learning and an honorary award for service from the Professional Teachers’ Council of NSW. In 2018, Di received an honorary award recognising her service to the Australian National Association of Teachers of Singing over a significant period of change, and for ongoing commitment to mentorship and guidance within the profession of singing and singing teaching in Australia.

Meaghan Sullivan (VIC)

Vice President

Meaghan has been a Speech Pathologist since 2002. She also holds a Bachelor of Music (voice) from the Victorian College of Arts. Meaghan has worked as a lecturer, Musical Director and singing teacher for various universities including Federation University’s Musical Theatre Degree. Meaghan continues to sing in both choral and solo concert events. Meaghan has been working as a Speech Pathologist with Voice Medicine Australia and the Melbourne Voice Analysis Centre since 2010. Meaghan also provides services to clients in the Ballarat and regional areas via her private practice which has a large paediatric caseload in addition to her adult neurologic and laryngology patient focus.

Meaghan is a certified practising member of Speech Pathology Australia, and a member of the Australian Voice Association and Laryngology Society of Australasia. She has attended and presented at many national and international speech pathology and ENT Specialist workshops and conferences on a variety of topics related to clinical voice management. Along with the performance voice, Meaghan has a special interest and expertise in neurologic voice (spasmodic dysphonia and tremor), cough, vocal cord dysfunction and the relevance of exercise science to speech pathology management.

Veronica Stewart (NSW)


Dr. Veronica Stewart is a singer, teacher and independent researcher. Her PhD thesis titled “Story, Song and Voice: Investigating the musical creativities of Australian singer-songwriters” looks into the singing voice, influences and creative processes of Australian

singer-songwriters (2019, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia). She is the principal voice teacher and owner of the Sydney Voice Studio and is a former sessional vocal studies/creative industries tutor and convenor at Macquarie University. She has worked with singers for over 15 years. She now frequently works with contemporary singer-songwriters, fellow singing teachers and artists with a focus on sustainable vocal, musical and entrepreneurial creative practices.



Madlyn Connelly (Vic)


Madlyn is a Speech Pathologist based in Melbourne. Her life-long passion for the voice started young, training in AMEB Classical Voice and performing in musical theatre. After graduating La Trobe University with a Bachelor of Health Sciences and Masters of Speech Pathology in 2013, she worked as a Speech Pathologist and clinical educator in public services across the continuum of care.

Working with the voice is central to her current roles as she makes up part of the multidisciplinary team in the dedicated voice, swallow and upper airway clinics atVoice Therapy and Pinnacle Surgery. She also works within the public sector at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, where she provides voice therapy to patients after cancer treatment. Madlyn understands the importance of each member of the voice care team from the singing voice teacher to the vocal coach and physiotherapist. She enjoys working with professional voice users and performers, and her research interests include the effect of radiotherapy on voice and also the impact of telehealth on vocal health.  

The combination of her clinical experience as well as her background in performing allows for a first hand understanding that voice is both an art and a science. She is a member of the Laryngology Society of Australasia and the Victorian Voice Special Interest Group.





Dr Paul Paddle (VIC)

Professional Development & Website

Paul is an Ear Nose & Throat surgeon with fellowship training in Laryngology - Voice, airway and Swallowing disorders. Paul completed his Bachelor of Medicine and surgery with honours at Melbourne University in 2003. In 2013 he gained fellowship to the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons. He completed a fellowship in Laryngology at Harvard University in Boston. He gained expertise in all aspects of laryngology including the care of voice, airway and swallowing disorders, operative and office-based treatments, and the use of established and innovative diagnostic and surgical techniques. He divides his clinical life between the voice, airway swallowing clinics at Monash Health, and the multi-disciplinary team at the Melbourne Voice & Swallow Analysis Centre.

Paul also has a keen interest in public health and research. He has completed a Masters of Public Health at Melbourne University in 2010, and a post-graduate diploma of Anatomy in 2006. He is currently a principle investigator in a number of clinical trials in the fields of ENT, and is the holder of a number of current Research Grants. He has authored a numerous scientific papers, and authored a number of book chapters. Paul holds senior lecturer positions at both Monash University and LaTrobe University and is passionate about educating patients and junior colleagues in the care of the voice. He is also a keen health-tech innovator and is currently developing a number of patient-centric solutions.

Paul is a keen musician, having completed A.mus.A in both Piano and Viola, and having been a member of a number of amateur choral groups.

Dr Catherine Gregory (Tas)


Dr Cath Gregory is a speech pathologist, lecturer and researcher. Initially working in biomedical research, Cath obtained a PhD in Neurophysiology from Imperial College London in 2002 before changing careers and completing a Master of Speech Language Pathology with 1st class honours in 2011. Since then she has worked as a clinical speech pathologist and clinical educator in both private practice and in acute hospital settings, providing evidence-based assessment and management of voice, swallowing, and communication disorders.

Cath is currently employed as a lecturer and researcher in voice at the University of Technology Sydney where her research focus is on differential diagnosis and treatment of functional psychogenic voice disorders. Cath is passionate about professional voice, frequently spending her spare time on the stage in amateur dramatic productions as well as running her private practice, Resonate Speech Pathology.

Cath is a certified practising member of Speech Pathology Australia, and a member of the Australian Voice Association, Laryngology Society of Australasia, and the Australian Professional Association for Trans Health.





Elissa Finn (QLD)
Elissa is a speech pathologist based in Brisbane, Australia. Elissa graduated from Griffith University in 2019 with a Masters of Speech Pathology and since this time has gained experience working in hospital settings across diverse caseloads including general medical, inpatient rehabilitation and voice and upper airway outpatients. More recently Elissa has commenced some private practice work at a laryngology clinic where she works with voice professionals including teachers and singers.
Elissa’s passion for voice originates from her background as a singer and singing teacher. Elissa has a Bachelor of Music and Masters in Music Studies (vocal pedagogy) and also remains an active member of the singing teacher community. Elissa has previously worked as a vocal tutor at JMC academy in Brisbane and presented for the Australian National Association of Teachers of Singers. Elissa enjoys being a member of Australian Voice Association, Speech Pathology Australia, Laryngology Society of Australasia and the National Association of Teachers of Singing.

Samantha U'Ren (VIC)

Samantha U’Ren has been a Speech Pathologist since 2004 and holds a Bachelor of Music (Melb Uni) in performance and a Bachelor of Speech Pathology. She has been a voice /singing teacher for over 25 years and runs her own practise, and Voice Studio “In Good Voice”, where she provides Speech Pathology (Voice and Dysphagia), Singing Lessons and Education on Vocal Health.

She has worked as a Senior Speech Pathologist (Voice Therapist) with leading laryngologists in Melbourne and Sydney and worked in London with a prominent voice team and managed the voice therapy departments across 3 major London hospitals.

She has presented at a variety of conferences on vocal health and medications, and their effects on the voice, and she produces her own Webinars on Vocal health specialising in Singer’s and Teachers’ Voices. She has recently been upskilling in Chronic Cough and Upper Airway Disorders.  Samantha is also a professional singer and works with the Opera Australia and Opera Victoria chorus and performs as a soloist at a variety of concerts and corporate events.

Samantha is a certified practising member of Speech Pathology Australia, (SPA) The Laryngology Society of Australasia, (LSA) The Australian Voice Association (AVA) and The Australian National Association of Teachers of Singing. (ANATS) She has also been a board member of the ANATS VIC and NSW Chapters.