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SANE welcomes new Board Directors

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New SANE Directors, Dr Caroline Aebersold and Mr Dean Duncan

SANE welcomes Dr Caroline Aebersold and Mr Dean Duncan to the SANE Board and extends our sincere gratitude to retiring Directors Dr Owen Harris and Dr Lynne Coulson Barr OAM.

SANE relies heavily on the passion and commitment of our staff and supporters, so we are delighted to welcome two highly experienced Directors to the SANE Board.

Bringing a wealth of valuable professional expertise, Dr Caroline Aebersold and Dean Duncan will support our vision of reducing mental health inequity and bridging the gaps between systems of support.

At our recent AGM, SANE applied constitutional changes that formally embeds lived experience into every part of our organisation from Board level to service design and delivery. This updated framework draws upon our nearly forty-year legacy of placing lived experience at the centre of everything we do and provides a blueprint for growth as we work towards becoming Australia’s leading digital mental health organisation.

Importantly, these changes also involved the creation of new Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander identified roles at all levels of SANE and the implementation of social and emotional wellbeing practice within our model of care. This work enables us to better serve Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities whilst creating a culturally safe workplace for First Nations employees.

Our two new Directors will play critical advisory and governance roles as we implement these changes across the organisation.

As we welcome new faces, we’d also like to recognise the significant contributions of Dr Lynne Coulson Barr OAM and Dr Owen Harris who have retired from the SANE Board.

Dr Coulson Barr played a critical role in the recent review and update of the SANE clinical governance framework, policies and procedures including the establishment and leadership of the Clinical Governance and Quality subcommittee of the Board.

Dr Harris was a driving force behind the new SANE Lived Experience Framework, supporting the establishment of the Lived Experience Advisory Committee and acting as Co-Chair.

Both were essential to the update and implementation of our ‘Bridging the Gaps’ strategy. We cannot thank them enough for the dedication they’ve brought to SANE.

New Directors

Dean Duncan
‘I am extremely pleased to join SANE, which compliments my personal vision of providing informed, supportive advice and culturally appropriate services to our community.’

Dean Duncan is a proud Aboriginal man of the Kamilaroi people of North West NSW (Moree) and was awarded the 2019 National NAIDOC Person of the Year. An experienced leader with strong business acumen, Dean has extensive

experience in both private and public sectors across Australia. Dean previously served in the Australian Army, deployed overseas, before concentrating on a career within education. Dean has worked within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities across the nation, as well as assisting young people in out-of-home care. As a highly experienced senior executive, Dean's key strengths are in his ability to link strategic directions with sound inclusive operational outcomes, always seeking opportunities to develop quality services within community, as well as reaching achievable outcomes, working across a broad spectrum of work sectors in the community. Dean has a direct focus on equality and diversity as well as a personal commitment of social justice.

Dr Caroline Aebersold
‘With a long history of supporting those with complex mental health needs, SANE continues to drive an innovative strategy as a pioneer in digital mental health services. I’m very proud to join the Board to help deliver on this strategy into the future.’

Dr Caroline Aebersold has held clinical, senior executive, CEO and board director positions for over 20 years across diverse sectors including mental health, education and justice. She is a former psychologist who holds a doctorate in human rights law and was the CEO of a national not-for-profit organisation for over a decade. Caroline has extensive experience in management consulting and leadership roles, with a focus on strategy, public policy, service and operating model design, governance and regulatory reforms, workforce transformation, digital strategy and public purpose transformation. A member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, Caroline has served on several not-for-profit Boards, including the Diplomacy Training Program, Sharing Stories Foundation, Suicide Prevention Australia, the National Committee for Standardised Reporting on Suicide and the Australian Psychological Society, developing deep expertise in not-for-profit governance and strategy. She is passionate about driving meaningful, evidence-based service delivery and systemic reform for improved public outcomes and has played a substantial leadership role in progressing the mental health and wellbeing reform agenda in Australia, including as a Director at the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System.

Last updated: 24 May 2024

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