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Vale Dr Kim Dunphy OAM PACFA Honorary Life Member

PACFA has received the very sad news that Dr Kim Dunphy died peacefully on 14 October, with her beloved family at her side, after a long and courageous battle with pancreatic cancer.

PACFA pays tribute to Kim who was part of the PACFA community for many years. She was a Delegate to the PACFA Council representing the Dance Movement Therapy Association of Australasia (DTAA) and Past President of DTAA.

From 2017 to 2019, Kim was also Chair of the PACFA Research Committee and a member of the PACFA Board.  

Kim was a pioneer in dance movement therapy who recently completed a Mackenzie Post-Doctoral Fellow at the University of Melbourne’s Creative Arts Therapy Research Unit (CAMTRU). She led the development of CAMTRU’s new Master of Creative Arts Therapy Program which incorporates Dance Movement Therapy, a very significant achievement.

Kim’s achievements were celebrated in June this year when she received a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for her contribution to Dance Movement Therapy.   Kim’s OAM is featured in this video piece by ABC News.  

Kim’s contribution to PACFA was substantial and this was acknowledged in October 2019, when Kim was awarded a life membership of PACFA in recognition of the contribution she has made to PACFA and to the psychotherapy and counselling profession.  

My lasting beautiful memory of our dear colleague Kim was last year at the conclusion of a Board meeting in Fitzroy North. We hugged goodbye and headed off on our separate ways. Kim on her bicycle, me in a friend’s car. A few minutes later we crossed paths at a set of lights. My friend gave way to Kim; she waved to us. And off she rode looking colourful and confident and full of fitness and joy, I literally exclaimed ‘isn’t she fabulous’. It’s a wonderful image. It’s in my heart. 

Kim made a huge contribution to PACFA both as Research Chair and as a Board member. She led our strategic planning for the last round, and she was so purposeful and committed to a great plan, and so creative in getting everyone involved and engaged and on it. The results speak for themselves: PACFA Strategic Plan 2019-2022. Kim’s name is on many other PACFA achievements. She worked with us for a short time, and left such a lasting legacy: What a wonderful woman. I miss her.                                                                                                                                               

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Dr Di Stow

Kim was an inspiring, warm and generous human being, with a great passion for her research in Dance Movement Therapy.  Kim’s contribution to PACFA was enormous, both as a member of the Board and as Research Chair. Her life and legacy will have a lasting impact for our profession. She will be greatly missed by many in the PACFA community, both as a colleague and friend.

Maria Brett, PACFA CEO

I want to acknowledge Kim’s many contributions as Chair of the Research Committee along with the leadership, integrity, and wisdom she brought to the role. In the relatively brief time I have known Kim she has not only inspired me through her commitment and passion as a colleague but also her courage and resilience as a person. A big loss for our community.

Dr Alexandra Bloch-Atefi, PACFA Research Chair

The PACFA community mourns the loss of Dr Kim Dunphy OAM and we send our deep condolences to Kim’s beloved family, John, Lex and Tess and their families.