Who We Are
Following the advice of stakeholders, the National Mental Health Commission established the Equally Well Implementation Committee, renamed the Equally Well Alliance, to implement and govern Equally Well in Australia. The committee is supported in its work by a team from Charles Sturt University.
The Equally Well Alliance is a collective of people representing consumers, carers, professional colleges, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations, Primary Health Networks, peak bodies, community managed organisations, private health providers and governments.
Equally Well Alliance (EWA)
Mental Health Alcohol and Other Drugs Branch, Queensland Department of Health
Dr John Allan MBBS, FRANZCP, PhD completed his medical training and PhD in Queensland and his psychiatry training in Adelaide.
John is the Executive Director of Mental Health Alcohol and other Drugs Branch in Queensland Health. He has been Chief Psychiatrist in both Queensland and New South Wales and led clinical services in North Queensland for 20 years. He is a leader in national mental health reform and is particularly interested smoking and mental illness. He is the President Elect of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists. He is the chair of the Safety and Quality Partnerships Standing Committee.
Brisbane North Primary Health Network
Libby Dunstan is the Deputy CEO at the Brisbane North PHN providing organisational and operational leadership as well as leading key external stakeholder engagement and partnership building for the organisation. She provides operational leadership to key organisational functions such as Primary Care Liaison and Integration programs.
Libby has over 20 years experience and expertise in senior health leadership roles, managing the strategic, operation and business and operational aspects of a number of organisations in the not for profit sector. Her particular expertise includes business development, government relations, health care integration, health system improvement, policy analysis and development, project management and stakeholder management. Prior to her role at the Brisbane North PHN she held senior roles at the Stroke Foundation and CheckUP.
Originally from Sydney, moving to South Australia 22 years ago, 9 of these spent living and working in rural and remote SA. My passion for, and commitment to representation and advocacy comes from my own lived experience journey. Additional insights, knowledge and expertise have been gained through nursing, peer work and lived experience roles in the public, private and community managed mental health sectors. I feel strongly, that to achieve system reform and improve outcomes for consumers, including their physical health, it is imperative they must be listened to, and included as partners in their care.
Co-design with consumers, family members and carers in planning, service design, implementation and the evaluation of mental health systems and services is vital for meaningful change. I am an active and forthright lived experience representative participating in many committees at local, state and national levels, and extremely proud (in 2020) to have been appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) “For significant service to mental health and consumer support organisations.”
Brisbane North PHN
Rachelle Foreman is a highly motivated and experienced executive with a passion for improving the physical and mental health and wellbeing of individuals and communities. She has worked in health and social services for over 20 years in the ‘for purpose’ and public sectors. As Executive Manager | Health Systems Improvement at Brisbane North Primary Health Network she works with a great team to develop strategic and collaborative approaches to support a more integrated system of care, with a particular focus on primary care, allied health and the hospital interface. She is extremely passionate about the consumer voice being front and centre in developing models and systems of health care and is a board director of Health Consumers Queensland.
Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists
Professor Malcolm Hopwood is the Ramsay Health Care Professor of Psychiatry, University of Melbourne; based at the Albert Road Clinic (ARC) in Melbourne, Australia. At ARC he is the Director of the Professorial Psychiatry Unit. He is currently Interim Head of Department of the Department of Psychiatry, University of Melbourne.
His research areas of interest include psychopharmacology and clinical aspects of mood and anxiety disorders. He has also led research into psychiatric aspects of ABI and other neuropsychiatric disorders.
He was President of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists between 2015 and 2017.
In 2017 Professor Hopwood commenced as Interim Head of Department for Psychiatry, University of Melbourne.
Australian College of Mental Health Nurses
Stephen Jackson is the CEO of the Australian College of Mental Health Nurses. He has worked across many industries, both government and private, having started in NSW Health, and most recently as CEO of a large regional health services company, and as a facilitator for the Personally Controlled eHealth Record. He has worked in Australia and internationally, developing teams and revenue streams for commercial and not-for-profit organisations in Asia and Europe, and was awarded state award by the President of Timor-Leste for services to that emerging nation. He is an active traveller and sportsman, with a family and a genuine interest in the metro vs regional divide in Australia.
In the 90s, Darren met his first Peer Worker in a ‘self-help’ group for people living with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in WA. He was stunned to find other people were having the same lived experience and was inspired by the support to attend meetings for eight years. This experience encouraged Darren to accept OCD as a part of his life and helped him see a brighter future which led to marriage, quitting smoking, eating well, doing lots of exercise and contributing to society. Ultimately they helped Darren find his value as a person worthy of living a long contributing life.
Darren then worked as a Peer Worker and a Peer Consultant in Tasmania for 18 years. This role was an opportunity to share his experience of finding a way out of homelessness and poverty, making healthier decisions and keeping active in his own wellbeing. Darren hopes this connection and understanding was key in supporting others to rethink their own commitments to changing habits of a lifetime.
Darren believes health and wellbeing is not about extremes, or shaming others, but rather all of our daily challenges in loving ourselves and striving for a balanced life.
Royal Australasian College of General Practitioners
Dr Caroline Johnson is a general practitioner in Melbourne with a special interest in primary mental health care. Alongside her long-standing clinical practice, she has extensive experience from undergraduate through to postgraduate training of doctors in mental health skills and is currently a Senior Medical Educator at EV GP Training and a Senior Lecturer in the Department of General Practice, University of Melbourne. As a GP researcher, she has published on recovery from depression, mental health treatment plans and the important role of general practice in providing care for common mental disorders. Her PhD was an exploration of the way people experiencing depression are monitored in the primary care setting. She has held numerous mental health advocacy positions including terms as Clinical lead in mental health on the RACGP Expert Committee in Quality Care and as a board member of Mental Health Australia.
Commencing a human services career in 1992 as a child protection worker, Sacha has a Masters Degree in Human Services Management, Policy & Research. He has held senior leadership and project roles across a range of settings including: family violence, out of home care, community development, allied health, general practice, quality improvement, social work and counselling, community health, refugee health and mental health.
In 2014, Sacha began working with Neami National as a regional manager responsible for newly commissioned Mental Health Community Support (MHCS) services in Western Victoria. In 2016, he moved to a senior leadership role with the Neami communications and marketing team before commencing a 1-year maternity leave acting role as General Manager of Corporate Services. In November 2018, Sacha was appointed to the position of Chief Operating Officer at Neami National.
Mental Health Australia
Mr Harry Lovelock is the Director of Policy and Projects at Mental Health Australia. He has been working in the mental health sector for over the past 25 years working in state government and profession based organisations developing high-level policy and managing major initiatives in the disability, community and mental health sectors. Harry was previously the Director of Policy at the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists and Senior Executive Manager at the Australian Psychological Society. He is currently a representative on a number of committees including the Australian Government’s Mental Health Information Strategy Standing Committee and the Safety and Quality Partnership Standing Committee.
David has a background in Performance, and prior to his illness he worked in a range of jobs while performing in musicals in Melbourne. After some years of recovery Dave became heavily involved in contributing his lived experience to improve services and ultimately improve outcomes for Service users. Dave is excited about being part of the Equally Well project and looks forward to working towards longer & happier lives for people with mental illness.
Charles Sturt University
Dr Russell Roberts is a Professor at Charles Sturt University and Adjunct Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Sydney.
Living in Orange, NSW his is a board member of the ANZ Mental Health Association, Chair of the Australian Rural and Remote Mental Health Symposium and Editor in Chief of the Australian Journal of Rural Health. He has also been on the NSW Mental Health Commission Advisory Council and Director of Clinical Training at Griffith University, Queensland. He has previously served as director of a large regional mental health service of over 1,000 staff, delivering comprehensive services across the spectrum of mental health care.
Mental Health Information Strategy Standing Committee
Dr Grant Sara is a psychiatrist with roles in clinical care and data. As a Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Sydney he is involved in caring for young people with recent onset of psychosis. He is Director of InforMH, NSW Ministry of Health and Chair of the national Mental Health Information Strategy Standing Committee. In those roles he works to see health system data used to understand variation and improve care.[/et_pb_accordion_item]
Australian Private Hospitals Association
Ms Carol Turnbull is the CEO for Ramsay Health Care (SA) Mental Health Services in South Australia. and has held that position since 2003. Prior to 2003 Carol worked with Ramsay Health Care as a Director of Clinical Services for 8 years.
She has been involved in Health and Psychiatric services for over 25 years and is a Registered General and Mental Health Nurse, has a Grad Dip in Management Practices, is a member of the Australian Private Hospitals Association’s Psychiatric Committee and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Within Ramsay Health Care Carol sits on the National Clinical Governance Committee and RHC Mental Health Leadership Committee.
Safety and Quality Partnership Standing Committee
Dr Murray Wright graduated from the University of Sydney Medical Faculty, completed his post graduate training in Psychiatry in South Eastern Sydney, and has worked in a range of metropolitan, rural and regional centres, as a clinician and, over the last 15 years, in a range of leadership roles, including NSW Chief Psychiatrist since October 2014.
Clinical interests include consultation-liaison psychiatry, emergency psychiatry, psychiatric and substance misuse comorbidity, and psychiatric impairment among health professionals and police officers. In addition to his public sector roles, Murray has maintained a private practice since 1990.
Murray’s role as NSW Chief Psychiatrist includes an oversight of quality and safety for mental health services, investigation/ review of critical incidents associated with mental health services, and contributing to improvements in patient safety.