Our Board of Directors

WHA benefits enormously from the wisdom and guidance of our Board of Directors. We acknowledge and thank all of our directors who so generously donate their time and expertise to WHA.

Meet our Board

Our President

Prof Anne Sneddon
Anne is the current President of WHA, a role that she has held since 2017. She has history of being involved in WHA since 1998 in various roles, including the Early Pregnancy Loss consensus statement, active in benchmarking at both Canberra and Gold Coast University Hospitals, many presentations at Annual Safety and Quality meetings and since 2012 has served on the WHA Board. Anne was a member of the Expert Advisory committee for the reducing Severe perineal trauma project and involved in the overall process that introduced the concept of sustainable change in health care through The WHI organisation. 

Anne has a background in providing care for women who sustain a 3rd or 4th degree tear having established the first Australian multidisciplinary clinic for women in the immediate post-natal period and a follow up service for women in subsequent pregnancies. She has published with other leaders in this field around the impact of care in this area.

Anne currently is the Academic Lead for WH at Griffith University and other interests include chronic pelvic pain and, endometriosis.

Our Vice President:

Kate Reynolds

Coordinator of Midwifery
WA Country Health Service, WA
Kate Reynolds, with 31 years experience as a midwife (and 37 years as a nurse) in WA tertiary, private, remote and regional maternity services with a passion for innovative models of maternity care and translating evidence into country maternity care practice.

Kate was previously manager of Maternity and Paediatrics at Bunbury for 6 years before setting up the Midwifery Group Practice. Kate is currently the Coordinator of Midwifery for WA Country Health Services, the largest health service in Australia, working in close partnership with the Clinical Head for Obstetrics, the Midwifery Advisory Forum and the Obstetric leadership to drive and standardise evidenced based policy and practice changes across WACHS whilst maintaining vigilance related to the safety and quality of maternity care.

Kate is able to influence at high levels for change in each of her roles including as WACHS Program Manager for the CHI Maternity Service Improvement program, as an executive member of the WA Health Clinical Senate and as Co-Lead of the WA Health Women and Newborn Health Network (WNHN). Kate is motivated by ensuring all country women and their families have access to safe, efficient and contemporary models of maternity care across the full continuum regardless of distance and where they give birth, including Aboriginal women.

Our Board Members:

A/Prof Mike Beckmann

Director Mother's Babies and Women's Health
Mater Mothers' Hospital
Associate Professor Mike Beckmann MBBS, PhD, CHIA, AFAIDH, FRANZCOG is Head of Mother Babies and Women’s Health at Mater and oversees Australia’s largest women’s health service with more than 12,000 births annually across 5 Facilities. He also holds the position of Chief Digital Health Officer for the Mater Group. ​

Mike is an obstetrician and gynaecologist, health informatician, and health services researcher with more than 70 research publications, and is currently supervising PhD students in the areas of minimizing clinical variation, team dynamics, and consumer information-sharing. ​

As a clinician, researcher and healthcare leader, Mike has led many innovations in healthcare delivery to improve safety and the quality of care, improve efficient, enhance patient experience as we as improve the work-life of staff

Nicole Flendt

Nurse Co-Director, Women’s Health, Genetics & Mental Health Directorate
Women and Newborn Health Service, WA
Nicole has been a Registered Nurse since 1994 and a midwife since 1998. Having trained in Australia as a nurse & in England as a midwife, Nicole went on to have a variety of clinical experience across both professions, eventually commencing her management and leadership journey in 2001​ ​

Nicole has worked in leadership & management roles in the General Hospital setting (Swan Kalamunda Health Serv ice) managing the areas of Paediatrics, Maternity & Surgical; & in Tertiary Settings spanning Adult, Paediatric & Maternity services (Royal Perth Hospital, Princess Margaret Hospital & Kind Edward Memorial Hospital).​ ​

My most recent positions have been at the Women & Newborn Health Service in the Executive positions of Nurse Midwife Co-Director for Gynaecology, Perioperative & Imaging Services for 3 Years, & Nurse Co-Director for Women’s Health, Genetics & Mental Health for 2.5 years – which is my current role.​

​ All of these roles required knowledge & application of clinical & corporate governance. I  was the chair of the Corporate Governance Committee at Women & Newborn Health Service for 2 years & member for 5 years, & a member of the clinical Governance Committee for 5 Years.  So, I have excellent working knowledge of both​.

Susan Gannon

Chief Executive Hospitals South Tasmania
Department of Health & Human Services, TAS
Susan is currently the Chief Executive of the Royal Hobart Hospital & Health Service in Tasmania.  Susan has had experience spanning three states (Victoria, Queensland and Tasmania) and working in senior management positions for Women’s & Children’s Services as well as all other clinical areas such as Medicine, Emergency, Cancer and Surgical Services. She has worked in policy, quality and education in both the public and private sector across Australia. ​

​ Susan has a passion for providing client centered care and striving to improve clinical outcomes for women and their families. Her qualifications include nursing, midwifery, a Bachelor of Early Childhood Education, Graduate Diploma in Family and Child Health, and a Masters in International Health. ​ ​

Susan has been a Director of WHA since 2014.​

Prof Adrienne Gordon

Senior Staff Specialist Neonatologist
Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, NSW
Adrienne is a senior staff specialist Neonatologist in the RPA centre for newborn care and Clinical Professor in the Disciplines of Obstetrics, Gynaecology and Neonatology and Child and Adolescent Health, at Central and the Children's Hospital at Westmead Clinical Schools, within the Faculty of Medicine and Health at the University of Sydney. ​

She trained in paediatrics prior to specialising in neonatal/perinatal medicine and is passionate about the public health impact of a healthy start to life and preventing adverse pregnancy outcome especially stillbirth. She is a Chief Investigator on the NHMRC Stillbirth Centre of Research Excellence, a Board Member of the Perinatal Society of Australia and New Zealand and active member of the IMPACT Network (Improving Maternal and Perinatal Outcomes – Action through Clinical Trials). ​

She has strong links with National parent led organisations - including Stillbirth and Preterm Birth Advocacy Groups both and is Deputy Chair of the National RedNose (Previously SIDSandKIDS) scientific advisory group. Adrienne currently leads the Public Awareness work within the Stillbirth Centre of Research Excellence which includes mass media campaign design and evaluation in collaboration with Prof Adrian Bauman from the University of Sydney. She is a key member of the Safer Baby Bundle initiative which aims to reduce late pregnancy stillbirth in Australia by 20% and a board member of the International Stillbirth Alliance. Adrienne is committed to multidisciplinary research and leads the BABY1000 project at the Charles Perkins Centre, University of Sydney which aims to determine the modifiable risks and interventions prior to and during pregnancy that impact on obesity, diabetes and later life health.​

Jonathan Morris

Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Director
Clinical and Population Perinatal Health Research,
Royal North Shore Hospital
Professor Jonathan Morris is a graduate of the University of Edinburgh and completed his Obstetric and Maternal Fetal Medicine sub specialty training in Sydney. He completed his PhD in Oxford and returned to Sydney in 1998 to the Royal North Shore Hospital. He leads a perinatal research team that extends from basic science to population health. His major research interests are the prediction, prevention and management of pregnancy complications.  He is Vice President of the Australian Preterm Birth Prevention Alliance, and a Chief Investigator with the Centre for Research Excellence in Stillbirth.  ​

Dr Nicky Webster

Clinical Director of Women's & Children's Services
North West Regional Hospital, TAS
I am a paediatrician and the current Clinical Director of the Women’s and Children’s Service in North West Tasmania. The North West Hospital serves a population of 116000. We have services based at the North West Regional Hospital in Burnie, Mersey Community Hospital in Latrobe and also have outreach services down the West Coast and to King Island.   

I trained in Tasmania, did my basic training in Adelaide and then completed advanced training in paediatrics in Launceston and then Auckland (spending almost three years at the National Women’s Hospital in Auckland as a neonatal fellow).  

I am passionate about road cycling and the North West is a perfect place for this. Living in regional areas has so many benefits and I am keen to ensure that the women living in our region have the same access to high quality service as their counterparts living in major metropolitan areas in Australia.

Special Purpose Director

A/Prof Emily Callander

Monash University
Associate Professor Emily Callander is a health economist specialising in maternal and women’s health. She has a particular interest in value-based health care, equity, economic evaluations alongside clinical trials, and linked administrative data. She gained a BA from Griffith University (2008) and PhD (Health Economics) from the University of Sydney (2012). She completed her postdoctoral work at the University of Sydney NHMRC Clinical Trials Centre and Charles Perkins Centre. In 2021 she was awarded the Women’s Healthcare Australasia Medal of Distinction. 

At Monash University, Emily is Head of the Women’s Economics and Value-Based Care Unit, and lead of Pregnancy Outcomes Research, at the Monash Centre for Health Research and Implementation. She also holds positions as Adjunct Professorial Research Fellow at Coventry University (UK) and James Cook University. She is a member of the Council on Obstetric and Paediatric Mortality and Morbidity Research Committee, Queensland Health Normal Birth Collaborative, and has been appointed by the Federal Department of Health to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee Economics Subcommittee. 

She has attracted $17M in funding as CIA or lead health economist. Her work on the cost impacts of different models of maternity care is being directly utilised by state health departments and hospital services across Australia, and she has recently (2021) co-authored the Normal Birth Strategy for Queensland Health. She has previously led the economic evaluation of the National Remote BreastScreen program, which increases access to screening for rural and remote women; and the national Rural Health Multidisciplinary Training Program, which resulted in a $50.3million expansion package being offered in the 2020-21 Federal Budget. She is currently undertaking the economic evaluation of the My Babys Movement, and Safer Baby Bundle stillbirth interventions. She is also evaluating a stillbirth bereavement care package, and the use of participatory women’s groups to transform the delivery of antenatal care for Indigenous women.  

Callander’s mission is to improve the health and wellbeing outcomes of women, through creating women-centred, valued-based health services, and reducing inequalities.