Meet our ambassadors
Meet our dedicated ambassadors helping raise awareness about the Royal Flying Doctor Service and calling on Australians to Flick us a Flynn.
Journalist / presenter Ch 7 sunrise
Popular television journalist, Natalie Barr, is known to most Australians through more than a decade as news presenter on Seven’s Sunrise morning program.
Natalie is one of the many Australian’s who has called on the RFDS for care. In 1983, Natalie was a schoolgirl living in Bunbury (WA) and flown by the RFDS for urgent care.
Almost three decades later, Natalie’s son was rushed to surgery and this time as a parent, she was again thankful for the RFDS for being there. No matter where you live, no matter who you are, The RFDS helps Australians.
“Without the RFDS.. my life may have been very different.
As a 15 year old, with my vertebrae crumbling after being eaten away by a mystery bug, they flew me to Perth as a frightened teenager from the country.
Then 30 years later, they came to the rescue again when my son had a punctured bowel from a bike accident 3 hours from Perth.
You never know when YOU are going to need them.”
– Nat Barr
Host presenter and director
Shining the spotlight on beautiful Australian places is a passion for Jennifer Adams. Her TV series ‘The Places We Go’ and her extensive travel around Australia has introduced her to so many Aussies in remote and rural areas.
As a journalist, Jen enjoyed a decade with Network Seven as a news reporter, prime time newsreader, presenter and documentary film maker. Her skill in telling inspirational and thought provoking stories has resulted in TV specials like “Everest – Unfinished Business” and “Chain Reaction”.
We are thrilled to receive Jen’s support for Flick Us A Flynn and the Royal Flying Doctor Service.
“Whether a regional centre, a remote town, or a million-acre property in the Kimberley, I have always felt great comfort knowing the Royal Flying Doctor is on standby for us all. It’s not something any of us can afford to take for granted, and if we want such privileges in our country then we need to all get behind them and do our bit.
I have been lucky enough to travel across Australia extensively with my TV travel Series Places We Go, travelling to the tiniest, most remote towns in the country, and it always humbles me when I meet the people behind this work – they are salt of the earth, and the true spirit of Australia. How lucky we all are knowing that this organisation is there for us all.
So why get behind Flick us a Flynn? Because to be honest, I think it’s the very least we can do to not only keep supporting, but to also say thank you.”
– Jen Adams
Actor and director
One of Australia’s most versatile and accomplished actors, Steve has a string of film and television credits including the Golden Globe nominated On The Beach.
He became a household name as ‘Angel’ in the long running television series Police Rescue and has starred in Neighbours, Wildside and The Magistrate, Upper Middle Bogan, The Wrong Girl and Wentworth (Series 4 & 5). We have seen him in films like The Water Diviner, The Crocodile Hunter and Drift and in numerous theatrical projects.
Steve is the Director and Founder of the Peninsula Short Film Festival, and the Perfect Light Film Festival in Broken Hill and he enjoys spending time in communities throughout regional Australia.
“I’ve spent a lot of time filming and directing in small Aussie towns and I know the further out bush you are, the further the distance to specialists, experts and help.
I know how appreciative regional folks are when the RFDS rolls into town for clinics and patient transport.
The ‘you’ll be right’ attitude doesn’t help when you need doctors, tests, life-saving treatment, or support services for mental health. But other Aussies can help by donating to the Flying Doctor.”
– Steve Bastoni
Actor Stefan Dennis is known throughout the world as Paul Robinson from Neighbours. A show as iconically Australian as the Royal Flying Doctors
With a prolific career in British and Australian TV, screen and stage, Stefan is instantly recognisable wherever he goes.
Stefan is proud to support the RFDS as it helps others in regional and rural areas.
“Thousands of Australian lives have been saved because of the Royal Flying Doctor Service. Now you don’t have to fly to help them out – just Flick us a Flynn and keep them in the air.”
– Stefan Dennis
One of Australia’s most hard-working actresses, NIDA graduate Annie Maynard has portrayed the many faces of Australian’s on shows like UPPER Middle Bogan, Puberty Blues, Paper Giants – the Birth of Cleo and All Saints.
Her voice-over artist work in television, radio, animated feature and audiobook makes has taken her to the farthest corners of Australia.
“Whilst I have grown up a city girl, my family has strong connections to the bush and to some rural and remote communities that are close to our heart. RFDS talked my Dad through how to treat his best mate when a gas bottle exploded between his feet on a camping trip. And, an old Aboriginal stockman friend in Oodnadatta was flown to safety as his health became more complicated in his old age.
My parents now own a house in Bangor, South Australia, and (touch wood) we have not had to call on the RFDS, but have safety plans in place and this peace of mind is indispensable. The people who live on the land are a resilient bunch, but I know the work the RFDS does must bring great solace in those times of vulnerability and pain. Here’s to the RFDS.
Flick us a Flynn Australia!”
– Annie Maynard
TV personality, MC and clothing designer
So many Australians love to travel, and many were probably inspired by the stories files by Getaway’s travel darling Catriona Rowntree.
From hosting Funniest Home Videos to Logies red carpet Arrivals, Catriona is a familiar face in Aussie loungerooms. With a passion for travel and reporting, and for life on the land, Catriona has a long association with rural and regional organisations that support people in the bush.
“Even if I didn’t have a Father who grew up in Quirindi, a brother farming in Muringo and myself now living on a sheep and grain property in regional Victoria and I’d still feel compelled to help the RFDS in any way I possibly can. I grew up in the city, but have always known of the lifesaving services that this selfless charity offers to those who can’t jump in the car and whip off to the hospital. Whilst they’re saving lives, this is the easiest way I can offer my help.’
‘Just point me in the right direction!’ If this is how I can support a service that is fundamental to the survival of others, I’m there. I’ll always have the back of RFDS, because one day they may be caring for mine.”
– Catriona Rowntree
The Wholehearted Cook & Masterchef contestant
Dani Venn is a Melbourne based celebrity cook, most widely known for her time as a finalist on MasterChef Australia in 2011 and as a MasterChef All Star in 2012.
Food is her joy. Dani’s shares this others through her food and communications consultancy, Eat It Up Creative, her blog, The Wholehearted Cook and her Wholehearted Wellness Retreats. She also hosts her own cooking show Weekend Feast on Channel Ten.
With an interest in healthy eating and building healthy communities, Dani knows healthy communities goes beyond food. Dani is proud to support the Royal Flying Doctor Service by sharing their story.
“Healthy communities need support in so many ways, and the Royal Flying Doctors are an important part of that for so many Australian’s. I’ve heard stories of Australian’s who have much to be grateful for thanks to the Flying Doctors – they’ve provided them with emergency treatment, transport at confronting times and support and care in the air. Now it’s out turn to help keep the Flying Doctor flying.”
– Dani Venn
TV and radio icon / OAM
Annette Allison’s career in the media has earned her two Logie Awards for her contribution to Australian television. A newsreader, compere and host of numerous television shows across Australia including ten years of the popular morning program Good Morning Melbourne Annette has worked for all commercial networks.
Annette is a regular Radio 3AW and 3AK host and has served as a volunteer on numerous not for profit boards including the Royal Flying Doctor Service.
We are fortunate to have Annette Allison on board as one of our team as the Public Affairs Manager of RFDS Victoria.
In 2005 Annette joined the RFDS to create a series of outback tours showing supporters and donors the real outback and to meet some of the wonderful men and women of the service. She will host her twelfth trip in 2017. In 2016 Annette was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for her contribution to many charities over the past 30 years.
Brisbane born Annette spent much of her childhood in the outback of Queensland and experienced firsthand the work of the Royal Flying Doctor Service.
“If you spend any time in the outback, you know the need for the flying doctor. They are a vital support to people in the bush. Every one of our aircraft is a flying intensive-care unit – we’re busier than ever and have more costs than ever. These funds are as vital as the Flying Doctor.”
– Annette Allison
Comedian & TV presenter
Cam Knight is an Australian comedian and television personality who loves making Australian’s laugh.
A familiar face on major comedy stages, including the Melbourne Comedy Festival, Cam is also the TV co-host of Channel 9’s Unreal Estate with Kate Langbroek. Cam has appeared on ABC’s Backseat Drivers, Soul Mates, How Not To Behave and Wham Bam Thankyou M’am. Cam has enjoyed time in the guest seat of The Today Show’s Mixed Grill and the morning show Studio 10.
Originally from Cummins, South Australia, Cam has lapped the country with theatre shows, comedy gigs and fringe festivals, corporate comedy and musical performances.
Cam is delighted to get behind Flick us a Flynn, and we suspect he’ll have some fun doing it too.
Stylist, entrepreneur and author
Emma Blomfield is an entrepreneur, stylist and author who has inspired the style of many throughout Australia, offering pragmatic, innovative solutions to living in style at any stage of your life.
Emma gracefully steers her passion for design via multiple platforms, and she’s recently added published author to her list of achievements with the release of her book ‘Home’.
She regularly hops on a Rex flight out to regional areas across Australia to teach homeowners how to decorate. She regularly escapes the hustle and bustle of city life to relax on her family farm in the Hunter Valley with her four fluffy donkeys.
“Having worked in areas of Australia teaching interior decorating workshops I’ve seen first hand how difficult it is to service those areas with the same medical services we have access to in the city (and regularly take for granted). With a family property in the Hunter Valley with no mobile reception we’ve had a number of close calls with accidents on machinery, and have witnessed numerous bushwalkers and motocross riders get lost and injured in the bush who have then been rescued by helicopter for immediate medical attention. It can go so wrong, so quickly. Without access to services like the Royal Flying Doctors many Australian’s wouldn’t be here to tell their tales. I’m delighted I can give back to the RFDS in some way. “
– Emma Blomfield
CEO, entrepreneur, military veteran, Australian Survivor contestant
Mark’s 16 year career with the Australian Military and 10 year career with the SAS has taken him to the most remote of places overseas.
As a Troop Commander in charge of 30 elite soldiers, Mark’s role was to lead combat missions deep behind enemy lines. Like many in his situation, Mark battled depression and stress disorders after warfighting in Afghanistan which he chose to tackle with the same intensity that he applied to Special Ops training.
Mark’s successful recovery and growth led him to embark on a high-profile career in business. He studied with the Wharton School of Business – an Ivy League College in the U.S.A. and was awarded their prestigious 40 under 40 award before joining McKinsey & Company. He is a passionate owner of a tough-luxury ecommerce brand and the CEO of a not for profit organisation, The Younger Heroes, which reconnects veteran parents with their children.
In 2017 Mark’s further challenged himself on a tour of duty as a Survivor Australia contestant, where he met his partner Sam Gash.
“After growing up in the red dirt in WA’s Pilbara Iron Ore deserts I can truly appreciate just how hard it is to access most parts of regional Australia. My time in the military taught me the importance of having an evacuation capability – it really does make all the difference and can determine a loved one’s fate.
Organisations like the Flying Doctors rely on the support from all corners –Flick us a Flynn is an easy way to keep supporting this Australian Institution that saves many lives every year. You never know when you will be calling on this service for one of your own – so please support where you can!”
– Mark Wales
Endurance athlete, inspirational speaker, writer, Australian Survivor contestant
A lawyer by trade, Samantha is well-respected as an endurance athlete, social entrepreneur, writer and key note presenter.
She has run through some of the most extreme and inhospitable locations around the world, becoming the first woman and the youngest person to complete the Four Deserts Grandslam.
She persevered through four courses of 250km desert ultra-marathons across the driest, windiest, hottest and coldest deserts on earth, carrying everything she needed to survive in a pack on her back.
Since then she has been motivated to channel her endurance running capacity as a vehicle for social change. Sam has run an admirable 379kms non-stop across Australia’s Simpson Desert and most recently completed a 3253km, 77-day run from the West to the East of India. Her adventures are captured in all their intensity in the award winning documentary Desert Runners.
In 2017 Australian’s watched Sam challenge herself physically and mentally, competing in Australian Survivor where she met her partner Mark Wales.
“A country girl from Bendigo, Victoria I choose running projects through remote locations around the World, including within Australia. I have seen firsthand the need and benefit of the RFDS, including being a participant of the tragic 100km ultra marathon in the Kimberley’s where several competitors were caught in a bushfire. Flick us a Flynn is a tangible and easy way for Australians to make a difference and support the work that RFDS do for those living in rural Australia”
– Sam Gash
Australian Sports Presenter & AFL’s first female boundary rider
Ch 7 Meteorologist and Weather presenter
View our ambassadors videos
Thank you for your support
Thank you to our ambassadors for their support in 2017.
International Basketballer and Olympian
Journalist / presenter