Scholar Profile - Lynda Farwell PDF Print E-mail
Lynda Close


Brisbane Team Leader at Hear and Say

Awarded a scholarship for University of Melbourne’s – Positive Leadership Development course, 2014

What sort of work does your organisation do?

Hear and Say is one of the leading paediatric Auditory-Verbal and Implantable Technologies (including cochlear implants) organisations in the world, teaching children who are deaf to hear, listen and speak since 1992. For more information about Hear and Say, please visit

Describe a typical day's work.

During my days at Hear and Say, I have the pleasure of assisting families along their hearing loss journey through diagnosis, fitting of hearing technology, and assisting their child to learn to listen and speak. There is nothing quite as amazing as seeing a child hear for the first time through their cochlear implant, or speak their early/first words as they blossom with their communication. My work also involves mentoring and training colleagues, and supporting the staff on the Brisbane Auditory-Verbal therapy team at Hear and Say. I enjoy the challenge of leadership, and being a team leader has allowed me the opportunities to advance my interest in management and leadership.

What are some of the key learnings from the Positive Leadership Development course?

This course was a fabulous two days packed with practical tips, supported by research, which I could immediately apply in my everyday work and personal life. The course facilitators were enthusiastic and genuine in their delivery of the Positive Leadership topics, and it was evident that they were passionate about this topic.  My key learnings included – strategies for promoting change through positive meaningful communication, understanding differences in people’s character strengths and how to work with these differences in a work environment, and using gratitude and positive leadership strategies to enhance the work environment.

How has it impacted / changed / benefited your role and your organisation as a whole?

I have had the opportunity to present the things I learnt during this course to a range of colleagues and it sparked incredible interest and enquiry from them. The principles of positive leadership strongly align with Hear and Say’s values. The skills and information I have learnt has been able to be directly applied to my team, and it has enhanced my confidence as a manager and leader.

How did you come to be working in the not-for-profit sector?

When I started my Speech Pathology degree I knew I wanted to work in the pediatric disability sector. Upon graduation, I was fortunate to be employed by Hear and Say. The principles of Auditory-Verbal Therapy and working with families to assist them to teach their children to listen and speak made sense to me, and I am coming up to hitting my 10 year mark with this fabulous NFP organisation. Needless to say – I love my job.

What do you feel is most needed to sustain and build the impact of the not-for-profit sector?

Community awareness - Raising awareness within communities of not only the purpose of NFP organisations, but the importance of such organisations to provide the services they offer. Many NFP organisations function as an extension or addition to existing government services. Raising awareness of the purpose of NFPs will assist in engaging donors, volunteers and supporters to see that we are able to continue to provide our services to the communities we support.

What is something interesting / unique / unusual about you?

In 2009, I was awarded the Bob and June Prickett Churchill Fellowship to study an issue related to the health of Australians through the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust. It gave me the opportunity to travel to the UK, Italy, America and Canada to investigate the services that are provided to children with a hearing loss by visiting some world renowned service providers. This fellowship has been pivotal in shaping my career goals and passion for working with families and children with hearing loss.

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"This course was a fabulous two days packed with practical tips, supported by research, which I could immediately apply in my everyday work and personal life."


Lynda commenced work at Hear and Say in 2005 after graduating from a Bachelor of Speech Pathology at the University of Queensland. Lynda is currently the Brisbane Team Leader for the Auditory-Verbal Therapy Team at Hear and Say, where she is currently supervising a mentoring program across all six Hear and Say Centres.

In 2014, ASF awarded Lynda a scholarship to attend University of Melbourne’s Positive Leadership Development short course.


Annual revenue / size:

Medium - $250,000 - $5m pa

Segment of NFP sector:


Operating in: