A QUT Executive MBA graduate that used his degree to help create Queensland’s only children’s hospice, and one of only three in Australia, has been shortlisted for a new global award that recognises entrepreneurs.
Paul Quilliam, together with his wife Gabrielle, were an ordinary Queensland couple who, after fostering a child affected by a threatening condition, made it their mission to build a specialised respite facility for families caring for a dying child or a place where they can be together while their child receives end-of-life care.
Over the course of six years and together with Wesley Mission Queensland they raised more than $10 million to build Hummingbird House, which opened in 2016.
Earlier this month Mr Quilliam was shortlisted in the 2019 Association of MBAs (AMBA) Excellence Awards.
The AMBA Excellence Awards and Gala Dinner celebrates the quality and achievements of post-graduate business education at the forefront of leadership excellence, recognising the talents and contributions made by AMBA-accredited Business Schools, their students and graduates.
The winners will be announced at the awards ceremony in London on 1 February 2019 in front of an audience comprising prestigious business leaders, international Deans and Directors, distinguished MBA alumni and journalists.
Mr Quilliam, who graduated from QUT’s Executive MBA program in 2010, was nominated in the MBA Entrepreneurial Venture (not-for-profit sector) category along with entrepreneurs from the UK, Ireland and Russia.
He said his EMBA played an important role in the success of the venture.
“I wanted to apply everything I had learnt during the two years of the EMBA and contribute something back to Queensland communities,” Mr Quilliam said.
“My wife and I fostered children with complex, high-care needs and we saw how difficult it was to find respite services with adequate medical care for these children.
“When a child has a terminal illness, the parents often become 24/7 carers. This adversely affects everyone in the family, especially siblings who can feel isolated when their parents focus so much time, energy and finances on the sick child.
“Hummingbird House will give these families the specialised medical, emotional and respite support they desperately need.”