Alliance Management Team

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    Stuart Hicks

    Chairperson
    Mindful Margaret River

    Stuart has variously served as:

    • Chairman & CEO of Transperth
    • Executive Director of Marine & Harbours
    • Chairman, State Shipping Commission
    • Director General of Transport, WA
    • Chairman, East Perth Redevelopment Authority
    • Chairman, South West Development Commission
    • Deputy Chair, WA Regional Development Council
    • And as a Western Australian Planning Commissioner

    He has also served for many years as Chairman of the Australian National Transport Commission and is an Executive Board member of Nature Conservation Margaret River Region. He has advised on policy and management matters to a wide range of organisations and individuals, including WA Police, Aboriginal groups, ALCOA, Rio Tinto, Department of Fisheries, Kings Park, Department of Housing & Works, and the WA Premier.

    He is former Chair of Swan Cottage Homes and National President of Children’s International Summer Villages. In 2006, Stuart was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for services to industry, government and the community. Stuart and his wife live in Margaret River. They have three adult sons.

    Miriam Avery

    Vice Chairperson
    Mindful Margaret River

    She has seen, firsthand, the struggles that farming families deal with and the difficulty in receiving mental health assistance.

    Miriam is a businesswoman, a mother and co-founder of the program “Open the Gate” – specifically created to educate and raise awareness about mental health and suicide prevention in Scott River, Augusta, Karridale and Nannup and how these communities can get assistance and where.

    “I am extremely passionate about my community and its welfare and am willing to do whatever it takes to improve mental health services cohesion in this beautiful corner of the world.”

    Di Ritson

    CEO
    Lishman Health Foundation

    With a health science, medical education and senior management background, Dianne Ritson has held leadership roles in health and disability across government and not-for-profit sectors in Western Australia and Victoria. As a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy of the United Kingdom, she has held academic roles in allied health at Curtin University and at the School of Medicine, University of Notre Dame.

    She formulated the strategy to lead the initial implementation of legislated Disability Access and Inclusion Plans across State and Local Government in Western Australia; and facilitated the supporting community awareness media campaign. She represented the State Government Disability sector on a strategy committee at the Department of Premier and Cabinet to develop a unified approach to the procurement of disability, health and community services.

    As a graduate of the Institute of Company Directors, she recognizes the principles of sound corporate governance and brings her clinical management background to guiding clinical governance, clinical risk and optimising safe clinical practice.

    Having grown up in a rural area, she has recently moved to the South West and is currently the Chief Executive Officer of the Lishman Health Foundation. She is keenly interested in the significance of health research that is translatable to the health and well-being of regional communities and seeks to improve health outcomes for regional communities.

    Deb George

    Clinical Manager
    South West Counselling Inc.

    South West Counselling Inc. a generic not for profit counselling service that has been servicing the South West region for 35 years. Debbie has worked in human services for 26 years, having worked in Alcohol and Drug Services, Family and Domestic Violence, Youth and with women transitioning from prison to community.

    Debbie has lived and worked in the Margaret River for 9.5 years. It is of fundamental importance that the community I live in is one that promotes mental wellbeing for all members, especially the vulnerable and marginalised.

    Erin Statz

    Local Community Coordinator
    Department of Communities

    Since 2010 I have lived and worked in Wadandi Noongar Boodjar. I am part of this project as both my personal and professional values are aligned with the goals of addressing mental health in our community. Our overall wellbeing is reliant on the wellbeing of all.

    I am currently the Local Community Coordinator in Margaret River for the Department of Communities. I work with individuals to build capacity in connection to community, access information, find practical solutions and connect with the right local support at the right time. Prior roles in Margaret River include Local Coordinator for Disability Services and Community Development with the Shire of Augusta Margaret River.

    Past work in Australia includes research and project management for Aboriginal family and domestic violence, Health WA. I have also been a social health researcher in Melbourne for the Department of Human Services. I migrated to Australia from Canada in 2004.

    Dr Peter Durey

    Retired General Practitioner

    Peter is a family doctor who trained in England but came out to Australia in 1976 and has practiced in General Practice since then. He retired at the age of 70, two years ago.

    He has mostly worked in a rural setting with various procedural skills, and special interests in paediatrics, men’s health, psychological issues and also sports medicine. He also has a special interest in palliative care and geriatric medicine. Peter used a collaborative, problem solving approach in his career. He started working in Margaret River in 2004.

    “I feel that I can offer experience in the practical and medical approach to the early presentation of mental illness, and I am excited about working with the group to get a positive outcome in the near future.”

    Yen Hawkes

    Communication Leader

    Co-Founder and CEO of Intercultural Action Group based in Margaret River is a multi-passionate entrepreneur, a foodie, has travelled extensively for work and has spent the last 30 years in the corporate sector; a banker for 15 years, managing 5 star hotel benchmarking in the Asia Pacific region, market research consultant and has project managed large scale customer service initiatives for key international clients in Singapore, Indonesia and Australia.

    Yen is passionate about assisting the migrants in Margaret River and in the region in the areas of isolation and language barriers. Yen migrated to the Southwest region in 2012 with her husband and mom and has lived in Margaret River since 2014.

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