Northern Territory Primary Health Network welcomes new Board members

Northern Territory Primary Health Network welcomes new Board members

Northern Territory Primary Health Network (NT PHN) has today announced the appointment of a new Board Chair and Deputy Chair as well as two new Directors.

Mr John Rawnsley takes up the role of Board Chair and in doing so becomes NT PHN’s first Aboriginal Chair. NT PHN CEO, Ms Gill Yearsley said, “The opportunity for us to have Mr Rawnsley as our Chair positions NT PHN to utilise his extensive legal background, cultural knowledge and supports our Reconciliation Action Plan and broader commitment to improving primary health care for Aboriginal Territorians.”

The new appointments follow the retirement of Ms Diane Walsh (outgoing Chair) and Ms Judith Oliver from the Board as they have reached their maximum term under the constitution. Both have been with NT PHN’s Board for 9 years.

Mr David Blair, a current Director, will fill the role of Deputy Chair.

Ms Yearsley said, “Mr Blair joined us this time last year and brings extensive finance, risk and governance experience to the Deputy Chair role. Both he and Mr Rawnsley are well connected to the primary health care sector and have established relationships across the Territory which can only benefit NT PHN and our work.”

The Chair and Deputy Chair take up their new roles, effective 30 November 2021.

The two new Directors of the Board are Associate Professor Marco Briceno and Ms Liza Houghton.

Associate Professor Briceno is the Chief Medical Officer for NT Health, based in Nhulunbuy and has an extensive history working in hospitals and is a Senior Rural Generalist Surgeon. He has a strong passion for medical education and holds Associate Professor academic status with Flinders University.

Ms Houghton is a registered nurse and Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and runs her own consultancy focused on reviewing and establishing governance and policies related to primary health care and Aboriginal health services.

Ms Yearsley said, “We are lucky to have secured two Directors with such strong skillsets and experience in regional and Aboriginal health, as well as governance and education.”

Acknowledging the outgoing Board Chair and Director, Ms Yearsley said, “On behalf of NT PHN I would like to acknowledge the tremendous input over a period of nine years from our retiring Chair, Ms Diane Walsh and Board Member Ms Judith Oliver. Both have seen the organisation go through significant change over many years and contributed their expertise to our ongoing governance.

With the level of funding NT PHN receives from the Australian Government, strong governance is critical to our Board and we have appreciated the efforts from both Ms Walsh and Ms Oliver to achieve this.”

A full list of Board Members is available at:

 Contact: Cassandra Buckley, Marketing & Communications Manager

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