Chief Executive Officer of Leading Age Services Australia Sean Rooney is pleased to confirm Mars One Astronaut candidate Diane McGrath as a keynote speaker for LASA’s National Congress in Adelaide beginning Sunday 28 October.

Mr Rooney said Diane McGrath is one of seven Australians shortlisted in the final 100 candidates for the one-way expedition to establish the first permanent human settlement on Mars.

“As an industry we are always looking beyond ourselves for thought-leadership and inspiration. And with a focus on sustainable practice, cultural diversity and inclusiveness, this international endeavour provides lessons for us all.”

Mars One Astronaut candidate Diane McGrath is a keynote speaker for LASA’s National Congress

Mr Rooney said LASA wants delegates to leave our National Congress in Adelaide feeling empowered, inspired and energised to tackle the challenges and realise the opportunities that will come their way.

“By shooting for the stars and applying to be an astronaut in this incredible mission, Diane hopes to encourage others to take their next giant leap forward, whatever it may be,” Mr Rooney said.

“I am confident that our program and speaker line-up, headlined by Diane, will deliver on its promise of being the best LASA Congress yet.”

Mr Rooney said Australia is facing a ‘new normal’ as the ‘baby boomers’ generation ages and it requires a shift in the way we think about ageing and sustainable aged care.

“We are witnessing the dawning of a new era where longevity of life is celebrated, consumers are empowered to choose, and fresh opportunities for Australia’s aged care industry abound,” Mr Rooney said.

“The issues of ageing and aged care are clearly of national importance and we need to engage all Australians in what it means to age well in our country.”

Mr Rooney said LASA’s National Congress is regarded as the most comprehensive, thought-provoking aged care event of the year.

“More than 85 presenters will share their experiences, expertise and insights over the course of Congress, covering topics ranging from business management, funding, ongoing challenges and opportunities with consumer directed care, technology integration and the delivery of quality services.”

The theme for this year’s event in Adelaide 28-30 October is Ageing transformed …. The dawning of a new era. For more information visit:

Media release – Mars One astronaut joins speaker line-up for LASA National Congress 2018