Graduating from Australian National University in 1981, Thérèse established Ingeus from a one-person enterprise to employing more than 6,000 people in around 150 offices across 12 countries. Each year, her company assisted hundreds of thousands of socially and financially excluded people into independence through finding suitable sustained employment.
Thérèse fundamentally believes that people the world over, regardless of their age, background or circumstance, are best assisted when interventions focus on their strengths, not their constraints; increase their confidence; take the time to understand what gives their lives meaning; and provide them with control and choice.
Her commitment to assisting people, however, goes well beyond her lifelong business skills. Thérèse is dedicated to assisting marginalised and disadvantaged people to achieve the means for optimal quality of life, and is active in the fields of disability, homelessness and maternal health.
In 2010, Thérèse was awarded the prestigious Australian Human Rights Medal for her ongoing work and commitment to celebrating and improving the lives of people with a disability and their carers, and was an active patron of the following organisations:
- Common Ground (Australia)
- The Indigenous Literacy Project
- UNICEF Australia’s maternal and infant health programs
- Ability First Australia
- International Paralympic Committee (Honorary Board Member)
- OzHarvest Food Rescue
- Arts Project Australia
- Livable Housing Australia
- The Bella Program at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney
- ACT Junior Talent Squad for Athletes with a Disability
Thérèse is currently a patron of Barefoot College in Rajasthan and also on the advisory board for international education and investments.
Thérèse’s passion for assisting people grew out of her own personal family experience and the values taught by her parents.
Her father, John Rein, a RAAF veteran, became wheelchair-bound after a plane crash in WWII. Told he would not walk or work again, he went on to become an aeronautical engineer, worked until retirement at age 65, raised a family, and represented Australia in the Paraplegic games (the forerunner to the Paralympics). Her mother, Elizabeth, was a physiotherapist.