Pat Turner to head up NACCHO

Pat Turner has been appointed the new CEO of the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO).

NACCHO Chair Matthew Cooke said he looked forward to working with Ms Turner to build on NACCHO’s successes and continue to improve the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people across Australia.

“We are thrilled to have a leader of Pat’s calibre join our team,” Mr Cooke said.

“Her breadth of experience in senior leadership positions in government, business and academia for more than 40 years means she is well placed to continue to implement NACCHO’s strategic plan to enhance and expand the Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Sector.

“She has served in multiple roles at the Departmental Deputy Secretary level in the Australian Public Service; was the only Aboriginal person, only woman and longest serving CEO of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission (ATSIC); and spent 18 months as Monash Chair of Australian Studies, Georgetown University, Washington DC.

“She was also inaugural CEO of NITV, setting it up, negotiating inclusion in Foxtel’s base package and commencing negotiations with SBS to secure a free to air channel.

“She has experience in regional communities, in the cut and thrust of government in Canberra and has travelled extensively throughout Australia in her various roles. This gives her an excellent appreciation of challenges facing our member Services in remote, regional and urban settings and how best to serve their interests.

“Her high level experience in government gives her good insights into negotiating the best possible solutions to increase our chances of Closing the Gap in ensuring improved health outcomes for our people

“She will be a great asset to NACCHO and our Member Services and we are looking forward to working with Ms Turner to strengthen our peoples’ futures.”

Ms Turner holds a Masters Degree in Public Administration from the University of Canberra where she was awarded the University prize for Development Studies. She was awarded the Order of Australia (AM) in 1990 for her contribution to public service.

Her appointment was applauded by the Aboriginal Legal Service of WA.

“Pat is an incredibly knowledgeable and skilled woman who has been such a groundbreaker in advancing the rights of Aboriginal people in this country. Her experience and commitment will greatly enhance the important work done by NACCHO” said ALSWA CEO Dennis Eggington.

Mr. Eggington believes that NACCHO’s role is vital in ensuring that Aboriginal people are at the forefront of providing holistic health care for Aboriginal communities.

“Health is such a concerning issue for our people around the country and as the national peak body representing over 150 Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services in health and wellbeing, NACCHO plays a pivotal role in ensuring that the health needs of our people are met, in the most appropriate way.

“It is extremely reassuring to know that Pat Turner will bring over four decades of knowledge and experience to this organisation, which has the capacity to benefit not only NACCHO and its ongoing work, but Aboriginal people across the country”.

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