Our Story


Milner Road Foundation (MRF) was established in 2016 by Silvio Tarca (1965-2018) and his wife Lisa. We are a Private Ancillary Fund endorsed by the ATO as a Deductible Giving Recipient (Item 2) and are registered with the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission (ACNC). As a Private Ancillary Fund, Milner Road Foundation is funded primarily by members of the Tarca family, though also accepts non-family member donations capped at 20% of annual donations. Between 2016 – 2019, Milner Road Foundation has funded $135K in educational programs for deserving young South Australians. A bequest from Silvio’s estate will allow the foundation to operate for a period of 20-25 years with annual grants ranging from $5-50K to organisations selected by our board.

The co-founder of the Milner Road Foundation, Silvio Tarca, was a first generation Australian and a citizen of the United States of America and the European Union. A man of science and belief in the power of education to improve lives, Silvio had a sense of purpose and responsibility in the way he lived his life. He also had a passion for learning, even from a young age. After completing an Engineering degree at The Unviversity of Adelaide, work life took him interstate and overseas. He completed two Masters degrees in Finance and Mathematics in the USA and after returning to Australia, a PhD in Applied Mathematics. 

Silvio was an active person who played Australian Rules football in his youth, later became a regular runner and skier.  He closely followed Australian, American and European politics and was always up for a policy debate.  He was close to his family and enjoyed spending time with his mum, two sisters, nieces and nephew.

Silvio’s close friends and colleagues reflected on the impact he had on their lives at his memorial service:

‘Catching up with Silvio was always a highlight, a chance to pick up the conversation, see what had now captured the attention of my friend with a deep spark for life. Silvio liked to over analyse things.  On and on, endless conversations about nothing that I always looked forward to.  There is a part of me that will keep checking my emails forever, waiting for my next instruction from Silvio.’

‘Silvio was always the voice of reason – in any way you like to think of things he was always reasonable – he was polite, moral, hard-working, academically outstanding, had a sharp dress sense and a wicked sense of humour and a real passion for social justice.’  

‘In my mind Silvio is still 25 years old running around Fraser Park, drinking beers on a Friday night, looking for the next Jazz Bar, Cafe or French Restaurant in Wellington, San Fran or Torino. Young, strong, resourceful, exploring his world and forging his direction in life.’

Silvio’s wife Lisa is now Chairperson of the Foundation, his sisters Rose and Chris and his good friend John serve on the Board of Directors.  Milner Road Foundation is operated and managed by this volunteer Board of Directors.

Why is the foundation named Milner Road?

The Milner Road Foundation is a family affair, founded by Silvio and Lisa Tarca with Silvio’s sisters on the board. Silvio was always inspired by his mum Angela’s intellect and love of learning. Angela was unable to finish secondary school due to World War II and needing to leave home to find fulltime work at 14 years old in order to help support her family. Despite leaving school early, she continued her informal education through reading books and newspapers. In her early 20s and only speaking Italian, Angela married Silvio’s father Peter and migrated to Australia, settling in the Adelaide suburb of Richmond at a house on Milner Road.
Angela became fluent in English within a few years and worked outside the home whilst raising three children. She always encouraged them to work hard and do well in school. Silvio often cited his Mum as the reason he embraced education and went on to obtain four degrees. Now in her 80s, Angela still lives in the same house on Milner Road. Silvio wanted to name the foundation after his childhood home as a tribute to his family, especially the influence of his mum.

Our Board

Lisa Tarca

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Lisa is the co-founder and chairperson of Milner Road Foundation. Lisa and Silvio met as work colleagues during a project in Melbourne in 1996, lived together in New York City and New Mexico (USA), returned to Sydney, Australia 2011 where they married in 2013, and then settled in Adelaide in 2015. Lisa holds a BA in Economics and a Masters of Business Administration. She worked in the information technology and corporate consulting sector for the first 15 years of her career and then transitioned to the non-profit sector in 2006. Lisa has served as Chief Operating Officer (COO) for several organisations including Human Rights First (NYC), One Laptop per Child and The Hunger Project Australia (Sydney), and was Commercial Manager for Kain Foundation (Adelaide) from 2016-2018.

John Vieceli

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Responsible Person
John was a lifelong friend of Silvio’s and has held the Responsible Person role since Milner Road Foundation was established in 2016. John is the founder and principal physiotherapist at PhysioScope, a musculoskeletal clinic for the assessment and management of work related soft tissue injuries. John has 14 years experience as a physiotherapist in private practice managing work related injuries. He holds a Masters of Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy with a focus on the rehabilitation of whiplash injuries. John also lectures on the management of work-related injuries at the University of SA and participates in Pain Management Institute of South Australia assessments.

Rosemary Dal Pra

Rose is Silvio’s sister and has served as a Director of Milner Road Foundation since it was established in 2016. Rose is a registered nurse who has worked with the RDNS in Adelaide for 30-years, in palliative care speciality for the last five years. Rose is also mum to two children, now young adults. During the AFL season, Rose can be found at the Adelaide Oval cheering on the Crows.

Christina Castellucci

Chris is Silvio’s sister and has served as a Director of Milner Road Foundation since it was established in 2016. Early in her career, Chris worked in the advertising sector in Adelaide before her husband’s work took them to Jakarta for several years. She returned to Adelaide and started her family. Now with two teenaged daughters, she supports them with school activities. Chris also works as a massage therapist and is a regular volunteer for aged care and youth mentoring community programs.

Athina Fotopoulos

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Athina is an experienced Learning Consultant who has worked in teaching and consultant roles in the South Australian education sector for over 25 years. She has a Master's degree in Educational Leadership and Management from Flinders University. Athina joined the board of Milner Road Foundation in 2021, bringing a strong focus on selection of effective and impactful educational programs.


The Milner Road Foundation aims to provide educational opportunities to disadvantaged young people in South Australia. This focus reflects our belief that education is the best pathway to upward socio-economic mobility and a better life.
2021MRF Audited Financials
2020MRF Audited Financials
2019MRF Audited Financials
2018MRF Audited Financials
2017MRF Audited Financials
2016MRF Audited Financials