Michelle Davis (Co-Founder ROADwhyz)
Michelle is a mother of three, with a passion to help save young lives which are unnecessarily cut short due to poor choices whilst driving.
Michelle lost her two teenage sons in a fatal car crash at Morpeth in 2005. Her son’s died as a result of speeding, losing control on a bend and running into an oncoming vehicle. It is for this reason that Michelle started to support road safety initiatives and became involved with Dave, Simon and Paul, all of whom were delivering their own safety message in community programs.
Michelle shares her own personal story with the teenagers, she does not speak at them and tell them what they should or shouldn't do, she simply tells them what is left after such behaviour, the consequences. Michelle speaks in such a way that the young drivers are able to relate to her situation, she shares encounters of supporting the mates of her son’s, as well as the role those young mates had to play in planning the funeral among other things.
Michelle was a TAFE teacher for 9 years and is currently the owner/operator of a local Personal Training Studio. Michelle is also an official road safety advocate for the RTA’s Centre for Road Safety and as such plays a key role in their efforts to change driver behaviour. She also speaks at other seminars where road safety is a key topic.
As a result of her own loss Michelle has also started a support group to help other parents get through the most unimaginable loss possible, the loss of a child. Known as the HOPE support group:
See more of Michelle's story in the documentary 'Out of Tragedy - A Mother's Story'
Paul Alexander, NSW Ambulance Service (Co-Founder ROADwhyz)
Paul Alexander is an Ambulance Paramedic who has worked for the NSW ambulance service for the past 12 years in the Sydney, Central Coast and Hunter Valley areas. Paul also worked in East Timor for a period of time in 2001 as a volunteer paramedic. Paul is heavily committed and involved in community education for road safety especially targeting young drivers.
During Paul’s employment with the NSW Ambulance Service he has been exposed to all levels of trauma from the very minor to the extremely serious and fatal.
Paul has spoken at many local high schools and addressed thousands of young people on the perils of poor road choices, in particular, that of; speeding, drink driving, dangerous driving and other issues around road safety. Paul has the ability to speak at a level the young people respond to. It is Paul’s aim that at the end of each session participants are left with an appreciation and understanding of road safety and injuries associated with crash’s.
Simon Thomas, NSW Police Force (Co-Founder ROADwhyz)
Simon joined the New South Wales Police Force in early 1996.During his time with the Police Force he worked as a general duties Policeman, as well as in numerous team environments such as the Riot Squad, SWAT teams and numerous strike forces and special operations. During Simons long police career he had the unfortunate experience of attending numerous motor vehicle collisions / crashes and witnessed the trauma that they cause not only to those immediately involved but also to the families involved. When asked for his thoughts on this part of his work Simon commented “I have handled the dead; I have searched their clothing and removed their valuables from them. I have tried to dignify the people in an impossible situation; there is nothing dignified in death caused in accidents”. The main aim Simon seeing the ROADwhyz program achieving is to highlight some of the mistakes that can be made, the potential costs of those mistakes and addressing the mistakes before they become serious issues.
Sergeant David Collis, NSW Police Force (Co-Founder ROADwhyz)
A Police officer for 16 years, 11 of those years undertaking duties as a Highway Patrol Officer across the greater Hunter and Central Coast Areas. David mission is to encourage young people to embrace life and not only make it great, but make it last.
The following people are also regular presenters at ROADwhyz:
Air Crewman Nathan Langham - Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service
Damian Bultitude - Registra, Cessnock Local Court. Dep of Justice & Attorney General.
Peter Harman - ex Police Crash Invesigation Officer - Newcastle/Hunter
Peter Birch - Drive5 Driver Training
Senior Constable Stuart Tylor - Newcastle Highway Patrol
Seargent Dave Collier - Hunter & Central Highway Patrol