The Mother’s Day Classic Foundation, which raises money for life-saving breast cancer research, has a new head. 

She is Leeanne Turner, (pictured, who brings to the role more than 40 years of experience in the superannuation industry across a broad spectrum of funds and entities.

Outgoing board chair Louise Davidson, who held the role for seven years and will remain as a director, has played an integral role in the founding and growth of this annual fun run and walk for breast cancer research, transforming the Mother’s Day Classic into the much-loved, iconic Australian event it is today, and has served in various roles over the past 25 years.

The Mother’s Day Classic was established in 1998 by Ms Davidson and Mavis Robertson, the former National Chair of Women in Super, with support from the broader Women in Super network. Having lost her mother to breast cancer at only 52 years of age, Ms Davidson was determined to take action and do something about this disease that affects so many Australian women and families.

Stepping into the role of Board Chair, Leeanne Turner brings significant skill sets in strategy, corporate governance, and risk management. She previously held the positions of CEO of AvSuper, MTAA Super, and was the inaugural CEO of Spirit Super; a role she stepped down from in March 2022. She was also recently appointed as a Director of the Industry Fund Services Board.

Ms Turner has been a passionate supporter of the Mother’s Day Classic since its start in Canberra in 2007. To date, she has raised over $25,000 for the organisation in support of life-saving breast cancer research.

“It is an honour and privilege to have the opportunity to Chair the Mother’s Day Classic Foundation, to continue the vision and success of its founders, Louise and Mavis, whilst also guiding and contributing to its future,”  Ms Turner said.

On Sunday, May 14 2023, the 26th Mother’s Day Classic will return once again to inspire and unite the community and deliver another extraordinary result for breast cancer research.

In 2015, Ms Davidson was named Victoria’s Local Hero in the Australian of the Year Awards for her voluntary work with the Mother’s Day Classic.  In 2019, she was made a Member of the Order of Australia in recognition of her “significant service to the superannuation and funds management sectors, and to breast cancer research”.

Reflecting on the early years of Mother’s Day Classic, Ms Davidson said: “It is extraordinary to look back on what has been achieved by the Mother’s Day Classic over 25 years.  In addition to raising all-important funds for breast cancer research, the event has created a wonderful community of those who have been touched by breast cancer.”

Today, Mother’s Day Classic events are held in up to 100 locations all across Australia. Since the event’s inception, over 1.5 million participants have taken part, donating $41.45 million to the National Breast Cancer Foundation to fund life-saving research.

 “It has been a privilege to lead and serve this inspirational organisation. I am delighted to hand over the reins to Leeanne, who has been a huge supporter of the MDC for many years. This community-focused event has grown tremendously over the years and is making an important difference to women’s health. It is something that both Women in Super and the entire profit-to-member superannuation network is and should be very proud of,” Ms Davidson said.

 Mother’s Day Classic CEO, Zara Lawless, said: “We give our thanks to Louise for her guidance and contribution towards the Mother’s Day Classic Foundation. Under her leadership, the Mother’s Day Classic has established an incredible 25-year legacy as Australia’s largest fun run and walk for breast cancer research, and we look forward to continuing this with her support”.

Photo: Supplied 

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