Gary Pert  

Gary was appointed as Collingwood Football Club CEO in 2008 and at the helm when Collingwood recently won ther first AFL Premiership in 20 years.

Not only does Gary have a terrific business sense, being extremely well thought of by his staff and others in the industry, but he also is a terrific leader and believes in empowering his colleagues.

"There are too many children living in circumstances that defy logic for most of us. As a father of two happy, healthy children, I can only guess at how difficult things must be for these kids and their families. It is easy to take for granted just how lucky we are and it is not until we are touched by these stories that we realize just how fortunate our lot in life is. All children should have opportunities to unlock their potential and be presented with equal access and rights of participation no matter what their circumstances. Unfortunately, this is not the case and the Heartwell philosophy of creating a level playing field is one I support wholeheartedly. I urge all those who are in a position to help, to donate to the Heartwell Foundation to see the difference that your contributions can make in the lives of these deserving children."

Gary Pert
John Gillam  

Managing Director, Bunnings Warehouse and Officeworks

John Gillam holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Western Australia; is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management and also qualified as a chartered accountant.

He was appointed Managing Director of the Home Improvement division in August 2004 and became the Managing Director of the expanded Home Improvement and Office Supplies division in November 2007. He is also a director of a number of Wesfarmers group subsidiaries and related companies.

John commenced at Wesfarmers in 1997 in a commercial role in business development and then became Chief Financial Officer at Bunnings. John was appointed Company Secretary of Wesfarmers in July 2001 and subsequently Managing Director of CSBP in July 2002 before returning to Bunnings in 2004. Prior to Wesfarmers, John was General Manager of Medical Corporation Australia where he worked following his initial career in corporate finance and corporate recovery at KPMG.

As a father of three young children, John was inspired to join the board of Heartwell in May 2009 after learning of their great work. John hopes that his business skills and passion for making a difference will be put to good use in helping Heartwell achieve their vision to “level the playing field” for Australian children.

John Gillam
Julienne Espenschied  

Julienne is a Director and co-founder of the Heartwell Foundation. She has worked in the field of education for the last 20 years. Upon graduating with a degree in Applied Science majoring in physical education, Julienne worked extensively overseas in particular in the area of special education.

Returning to Australia Julienne commenced work in mainstream education institutions. Returning to Australia Julienne commenced work in mainstream education institutions. During that time she worked with many children whom were being integrated into mainstream schools. It was there she encounter first hand how difficult it was for those children to fully participate in the curriculum, and how difficult it also was for the staff endeavouring to provide an inclusive program.

A real interest and passion in the area of disability coupled with her strong belief in the value of sound physical education for all led her, and partner Scott Taylor to establish the Heartwell Fitness organisation in 1993. Together their philosophy was to create on organisation which specifically catered for people who had day to day difficulty in their life yet also needed to access quality programs to enhance their general well being, health and skills - that is create a more level playing for those who need it the most. Specifically it provided specialised education program for children and adults living with injury, disability or illness. In that time over 1,000 people have accessed and participated in the Heartwell programs.

Julienne Espenschied
Scott Taylor  

Scott graduated with a degree in Applied Science majoring in physical education in 1984. After obtaining his degree Scott worked in a variety of settings including teaching in various secondary schools in Melbourne, working in executive health and fitness and working as a specialist advisor with professional athletes.

However, it was while working with special needs children where Scott discovered his real passion and also the lack of quality physical education programs available to disadvantaged children. He and Partner Julienne have 3 children of their own, but think of the Foundation they have created as their other ‘baby’.

"One of the really great things about our work is the diversity of the children with whom we work. We have an unshakeable belief in the value of physical education, especially for children with disabilities or who are living in disadvantage. Creating a more level playing field by offering access and opportunity is the cornerstone of the Heartwell Foundation.

Although our programs all address individual or group needs, the underlying tenet for all our work is much the same; sound exercise prescription and quality physical education delivery in a fun based, non-threatening environment. We want to equip the special children that we work with, with the skills and knowledge to make positive lifestyle changes and feel in charge of their physical well-being. Access, opportunity and equality are really all that children need to shine. Our work goes on to make sure this happens for all"

Scott Taylor


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