New board members for National Rural Health Alliance


Wednesday, 29 November, 2023

New board members for National Rural Health Alliance

The National Rural Health Alliance (the Alliance) has appointed Penny Stewart OAM, Director of Alice Springs Intensive Care Unit, and Dr Nicole Liesis, Clinical Lead Emergency at Narrogin Health Service, as new board members.

Nicole O’Reilly, Head of School Health Sciences at Charles Darwin University, and Jacqueline Emery, Chief Executive of Royal Far West, were re-elected as board members.

“This is an exciting time for the Alliance as advocates for rural health care access and as we mark the end of yet another successful campaign — the National Rural Health Month,” said Alliance Chief Executive Susanne (Susi) Tegen.

Penny Stewart OAM has contributed to building a rural and remote workforce, supporting the College of Intensive Care to adopt mandatory training to see rural intensive care as a mechanism to secure the rural workforce. Dr Nicole Liesis is an experienced clinician with 30 years working in a wide variety of healthcare settings.

Heather Keighley, board member of Australian College of Nursing (Rural Nursing and Midwifery Faculty) and an academic at Flinders University NT on rural and remote health, was re-elected as Deputy Chair. Katherine Isbister, Director of Bluewater Health Consultancy, was elected as Treasurer.

Nicole O’Reilly, re-elected as Chair of the Alliance, is based in Darwin, NT, and has held positions within the government, not-for-profit and higher education sectors, focusing on leadership, program development, change management and high-quality service provision. Jacqueline Emery, who has held strategic leadership roles for the last 20 years, is passionate about equitable access to health services to support country children’s healthy development.

The other board directors are Monica Barolits-McCabe, Executive Director, NACCHO; Geoff Argus, Director, Southern Queensland Rural Health; and Frank Quinlan, Federation Executive Director, Royal Flying Doctor Service. The board directors will hold office until the AGM of 2025.

Image courtesy of the National Rural Health Alliance.

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