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2022 Lifetime Achievement Awards

We awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award to 13 recipients in 2022. The awards were presented on 22 November at the Leading Reform Summit 2022.

2022 Lifetime Achievement Award winners and representatives
2022 Lifetime Achievement Award winners and representatives

Kingsley Bedwell

In honour of distinguished service, significant contribution and leadership in mental health in Queensland

Citation: Kingsley Bedwell is Chief Executive of Richmond Fellowship Queensland. His career has developed across professional service delivery, public mental health, and wider health administration and policy reform, consultancy, community sector service delivery, research and evaluation, and voluntary roles.

Kingsley was co-founder and foundation president of the sector peak body, the Queensland Alliance for Mental Health, and served as an inaugural member of the Queensland Mental Health and Drug Advisory Council.

Kingsley has mental health lived experience as a family member and career and highly values the role of lived experience in service design and delivery. He also highly values the importance of the scientific discourse, ensuring the evidence for what benefits people’s recovery.

Kingsley’s contribution has also been acknowledged with a Centenary Medal for distinguished service to health.

Professor Robert Bland AM

In honour of distinguished service, significant contribution and leadership in mental health in Queensland

Citation: Professor Robert Bland AM has worked as a social work practitioner, teacher and researcher in the mental health area for many years. He graduated with a BSW (Hons) from The University of Queensland in 1971 and completed a Master of Social Work in 1978 and Doctorate in 1987. After working in hospital and community settings as a mental health social worker for Queensland Health for many years, Robert took up academic positions at The University of Queensland, the University of Tasmania and Australian Catholic University.

He has been active in a number of national committees for the Australian Association of Social Workers including the mental health, ethics and practice standards committees, and the Mental Health Council of Australia. He has been President of the Australian Council of Heads of Schools of Social Work, and a member of the boards of mental health services such as Anglicare Tasmania, Aspire, Neami and Arafmi.

Robert has published widely in the area of social work and mental health practice. His research interests include social work practice, practice standards, families and mental health, spirituality and mental health, and social inclusion.

John Brady

In honour of distinguished service, significant contribution and leadership in mental health and suicide prevention in Queensland

Citation: John Brady passionately believes that suicide prevention is everyone’s business and has proved this through his work for Mates in Construction, having helped to develop the suicide prevention program that has significantly reduced suicide rates in the construction industry.

John has enjoyed a diverse and rewarding career ranging from 20 years as a principal in Catholic schools to his own consultancy in leadership, management and strategic planning. Through this consultancy role John worked with construction companies, unions and associations, which led to work on community consultation for a study into construction industry suicide in 2008.

Working with Jorgen Gullestrup as a consultant became the start of a productive partnership, great friendship and the beginning of what we now know as the award-winning Mates in Construction program.

John is passionate about working in his community but has also performed considerable work in impoverished communities in Central Africa, focusing on leadership thinking and microeconomic projects. John’s community values and achievements are proudly supported by his wife of 42 years, Linda, his five children and 9.6 grandchildren.

Michael Burge AM

In honour of distinguished service, significant contribution and leadership in mental health peer work and lived experience in Queensland

Citation: Michael Burge AM is passionate about his work and committed to improving quality of life for people affected by mental illness, their families and carers. He has served on over 70 local, state, national and international mental health committees and forums, and is proud to be one of the authors of Peer Work in Australia, a ground-breaking roadmap of the peer work concept.

Michael is the former Chair of the National Mental Health Consumer and Carer Forum, on which he also served as a member from 2006–2017. He is also a former Board Director of the World Federation for Mental Health and was Vice-President for Program Development from 2017–2021. He has participated in many overseas exchanges, and visited over 100 different mental health and consumer-driven and operated organisations in over 13 countries.

Michael is also a retired Army Warrant Officer of 20-years-service and was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia in 2014, and Member of the Order of Australian in 2020 in recognition of his work as a mental health peer advocate since 1995.

Professor David Crompton OAM

In honour of distinguished service, significant contribution and leadership in the mental health, alcohol and other drugs, and suicide prevention sectors in Queensland

Citation: Professor David Crompton OAM was awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia for development of community-based mental health services for veterans and the development of community post traumatic stress disorder, anxiety and substance use treatment services.

David worked in private practice as a rural general practitioner prior to commencing psychiatry training and spent 12 years in private psychiatry practice. David subsequently held leadership roles in Queensland Health and New South Wales Health mental health services.

His research interests have included the impact of disasters on psychological and physical health in Queensland, recovery-oriented mental health and substance use care, health economics and clinical redesign.

David has also received the RACMA Margaret Tobin Challenge Award 2017, the RANZCP Dr Joan Lawrence Mental Health Prize 2019, and the Australian Social Work Awards Bruce Lord Award for Excellence in Research Methodology in 2018.

Professor Brett Emmerson AM

In honour of distinguished service, significant contribution and leadership in mental heath in Queensland

Citation: Professor Brett Emmerson AM is a highly experienced senior mental health clinician leader. Since 1988 he has managed a range of mental health services, including community services, and has served as Queensland’s Chief Psychiatrist, Director of Logan’s public mental health service, Executive Director of mental health services at the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, and as Executive Director of Metro North Mental Health, Queensland’s largest mental health service.

Over his career he has worked collaboratively with universities, Commonwealth agencies and non-government organisations, including Brisbane North PHN, which produced the first Regional Mental Health plan in Australian 2018. He served on the board of Stepping Stone Clubhouse for 28 years, as well as the National Mental Health Workforce Committee that produced Australia’s first Mental Health Workforce Plan and the National Mental Health Planning Framework.

Brett currently provides part-time clinical care at Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital and teaches medical students at The University of Queensland. He is a member of the Queensland Mental Health Review Tribunal and the Queensland Mental Health and Drug Advisory Council. He is also a Board Director and Medical Assessor for the Australian Council on Healthcare Standards. Professor Emmerson is Chair of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (Qld) and was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in 2017 for services to psychiatry, medical administration and contribution to mental health groups.

Helen Glover

In honour of distinguished service and significant contribution to mental health lived experience leadership in Queensland

Citation: For over 35 years Helen Glover has brought tenacity, passion and boldness to influence the delivery of mental health services nationally and internationally. Her ultimate purpose has always been to disrupt the system’s status quo so more people have greater opportunity to live their very best lives. Her own lived experience overcoming the impacts of life adversity has deeply informed her practice and system advocacy.

Helen has also drawn upon her professional background in social work, education and leadership to expand the application of recovery-oriented practice.

Helen’s professional legacy includes her service transformation, action-learning approaches such as the Recovery-Oriented Mentoring Program (ROMP) and Recovery-Oriented Certificate IV (ROCIV), along with many practical resources and publications that are utilised in day-to-day practice and service delivery models.

She is known for always learning with and from those she meets, challenging herself to deepen her appreciation of what it takes to support people to live well and flourish outside the effects of mental ill-health.

Dr Elisabeth Hoehn

In honour of distinguished service, significant contribution and leadership in perinatal and infant mental health in Queensland

Citation: Dr Elisabeth Hoehn is the Medical Director and consultant child psychiatrist for the Queensland Centre for Perinatal and Infant Mental Health. The Centre delivers clinical and family support services to infants, young children and their families across Queensland. In addition, the Centre provides cross-sector support for the development of a statewide continuum of care for perinatal and infant mental health.

Elisabeth has more than 30 years’ experience in child and youth mental health, primarily in community settings, including clinical service delivery, service management and development, quality enhancement, and outcome evaluation.

She is passionate about perinatal and infant mental health service development, child-centred, family-focused and community-based care, collaborative practice, training and advocacy. This involves working collaboratively with other service providers and across sectors to optimise outcomes for the child and their family.

Elisabeth’s work is pivotal in bringing perinatal and infant mental health needs to the attention of policy-makers, decision-makers and the general community, with the goal of improving the emotional wellbeing of all Queensland families, parents, infants and young children.

Elisabeth is a member of the Australian Association for Infant Mental Health and serves on the Board of Directors for the World Association for Infant Mental Health. 

Emeritus Professor David Kavanagh

In honour of distinguished service, significant contribution and leadership in the mental health, and alcohol and other drugs sectors in Queensland

Citation: Emeritus Professor David Kavanagh worked as a clinical psychologist and area coordinator of community health services in Bankstown, New South Wales, before obtaining a Doctorate from Stanford University and joining The University of Sydney, where he became Head of Psychology. Later, he worked at The University of Queensland and Queensland University of Technology, where he is now an Emeritus Professor.

David’s research has focused on innovative approaches to support motivation for self-management, prevent relapse and address co-occurring disorders.

Since 2008, he has developed and tested treatments that are delivered through web programs, apps or robots, and from 2013–2020 he led e-Mental Health in Practice, which supports primary care practitioners across Australia to use digital resources in their work.

David has contributed to mental health policy and practice by serving on many state and federal committees and professional societies, including the Queensland Mental Health and Drug Advisory Council, which he chaired from 2017–2022.

William Rutkin OAM

In honour of distinguished service, significant contribution and leadership in the alcohol and other drugs sector in Queensland

Citation: William (Bill) Rutkin OAM has proved that progressive social reform is driven by the grassroots and members of society dedicated to principles of social justice. Throughout his extensive career, Bill has exemplified dedication, peer leadership and mentorship, and outstanding contribution to increasing the impact of Queensland organisations and communities in the HIV, HCV, sexual health, and alcohol and other drugs areas.

Bill received the Medal of the Order of Australia in 1994 for services to community health, particularly in the public health field of HIV/AIDS, where he was instrumental in advocating for the establishment of suitable services for the LGBTIQA+ community, and advocacy for need and syringe programs across Queensland.

He was a founding member, inaugural Treasurer, and later President of the Queensland AIDS Council. He is a long-term member of the Queensland Intravenous AIDS Association (QuiVAA) and was instrumental in founding the Queensland Injectors Health Network (QuIHN). He continues to serve on the boards of both organisations. Bill received an honourable mention for his equality campaigning in the 2017 same-sex marriage campaign and in 2021 joined the board of Just Equal Australia, a national advocacy group for the LGBTIQA+ community.

Since 1987, Bill has supported various programs in Africa on HIV and homosexual law reform and is particularly proud of his work with a human rights and community health organisation in Uganda.

Raylee Taylor OAM

In honour of distinguished service, significant contribution and leadership in the mental health, suicide prevention, and alcohol and other drugs sectors in Queensland

Citation: After losing her son to suicide in 1989, Raylee Taylor OAM has devoted 30 years of her personal and professional life to suicide prevention and supporting those bereaved by suicide with care and compassion. She has made a significant contribution to suicide prevention at local, state, national and international levels.

In 2000, Raylee produced a guide for the World Health Organization on setting up support groups for those bereaved by suicide, while at the national level she was a member of the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention from 1995–2017. She is a long-term member of Suicide Prevention Australia and was a founding member of the Care for Life Suicide Prevention Association, which educated the community and developed suicide prevention resources to assist young people.

As part of her work, Raylee has helped set up community suicide prevention networks across the state, including producing the Youth Suicide Prevention Program for Queensland TAFE in 1994–1995 and conducting numerous workshops over subsequent years. For 14 years, in concert with the Salvation Army, Raylee also facilitated a support group for people bereaved by suicide, offering the wisdom and knowledge of her own lived experience to help families and loved ones going through similar loss. In recognition of her achievements, Raylee was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for her service to community health in 2021.

Professor Harvey Whiteford

In honour of distinguished service, significant contribution and leadership in mental health in Queensland

Citation: Harvey Whiteford is a Professor of Population Mental Health at The University of Queensland, and Director of the Queensland Centre for Mental Health Research, an academic-health partnership between Queensland Health and The University of Queensland, hosted by West Moreton Health. Harvey’s research focuses on the epidemiology and burden of mental disorders, and mental health policy and service planning.

He was the inaugural Chair of the Queensland Mental Health and Drug Advisory Council, and served as a National Mental Health Commissioner from 2017–2018.

Between 2018 and 2020, Harvey served as an Associate Commissioner on the Australian Government Productivity Commission’s mental health inquiry which made wide-ranging recommendations for improving the mental health of the population, reforming the mental health treatment system, and the way mental health is managed in other sectors of society.

Harvey trained in medicine, psychiatry, and public health in Queensland, Stanford University and the Australian National University. He has held senior positions in government, including Director of Mental Health in the Queensland and Federal governments, and at the World Bank in Washington DC where he led establish the bank’s lending program for mental and neurological disorders.

Dr Dennis Young AM

In honour of distinguished service, significant contribution and leadership in the alcohol and other drugs sector in Queensland

Citation: Dr Dennis Young AM considers it a privilege to work in the alcohol and other drugs sector and gains his motivation and passion from the people he has met and worked with throughout his career—during which he has witnessed the tremendous development in professionalism, accountability and governance of the sector since 1988.

Dennis is the Company Secretary and Chief Advocate for the Drug Awareness and Relief Foundation and Drug ARM and is the immediate past Executive Director of the group. He held this role for over 30 years and grew Drug ARM from three program staff to an organisation with over 100 employees in over 40 locations.

His career achievements include serving as the inaugural President of the Queensland Network of Alcohol and Other Drug Agencies, serving as a Member of the Australian Council on Drugs for over a decade, and serving on 15 committees at state and national levels, as well as ten boards.

In addition to his work in the alcohol and other drugs sector, Dennis also served as a member of the Queensland Parliament and as a Queensland Police Officer for almost 20 years.

As a testament to his community service, Dennis has also been awarded the Silver Jubilee Medal, Centenary Medal, Member of the Order of Australia, Lea Greenaway Award 2013, Lions International Melvin Jones Fellowship, and Rotary International Paul Harris Fellowship.