A pathway to a healthier you

Our board

Denise Heinjus - Board Chair

Denise’s nursing career spans 55 years. She started as a Registered Nurse in 1972 then completed her midwifery training in 1973. She has achieved a Graduate Certificate in Management and Masters of Health Science (Honours). Throughout her career, she has held professional appointments with University of Melbourne, Australian Catholic University, Deakin University and University of Wollongong.   

Denise’s employment experience includes working in large regional and metropolitan public health services across NSW and Victoria.   
Denise has always been committed to shaping a ‘just’ workplace culture where nurses and midwives thrive as individuals and multidisciplinary team members. Denise is committed to closing the health gap for First Nations people and encouraged to see the increasing numbers of health workers identifying as First Nations people.  

She values the importance of shared leadership and teamwork, genuine community consultation and engagement and is an experienced leader in driving positive cultural and clinical change for the mutual benefit of staff and consumers.  

Denise has a deep appreciation of the demanding roles of nurses and midwives as professionals and caregivers and is honoured to be appointed as the inaugural chair of the National Nurses and Midwives Health Program Australia.

Helen White  

Helen White is the CEO for the Australian College of Midwives (ACM) and also represents ACM on the National Women’s Health Advisory Council, is a Council Member of the Migrant and Refugee Health Partnership and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Helen has extensive experience in governance and membership organisations, and has a particular interest in women’s health equity. 

Pip Carew  

Pip joined our board as a nominee of the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation.

Pip is a passionate advocate for nurses and midwives. She has had a long career in the health care industry, initially working as a clinical nurse in Victorian public and private hospitals, community, and aged care facilities. 

She then had a 20-year career working in industrial relations for the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (Victorian Branch). Pip held the role of Assistant State Secretary for 10 years before retiring from that position in 2021. 

Pip was a trustee director for super fund HESTA for 4 years and since 2018 has held the role of trustee director for Aware super fund. 

Heather Keighley


Heather currently works as an academic with Flinders University in the NT focussing on quality nursing student placements.  

She has an extensive work history in the NT in a range of nursing and leadership roles including Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer, Senior Nursing Advisor and Director of Nursing for remote primary health care. 

Her passion is in the development and wellbeing of our rural and remote nursing workforce and has been an advocate for this nationally in recent years.  

An active Fellow of the Australian College of Nursing (ACN), Heather is the previous Faculty Chair for Rural and Remote Nurses and Midwives, is a current Board Director for both ACN and the National Rural Health Alliance where she holds the office of Deputy Chair.  

Adrian Armitage  

Adrian is the CEO of The Australian College of Mental Health Nurses. He has 15 years C-level experience at not-for-profits working for the Australian Medical Association and Australian Computer Society. 

A Fellow of the Governance Institute of Australia and roles as Global Marketing Manager for IELTS and Regional Director and Marketing Manager at OPSM, Adrian contributes senior governance, marketing, and commercial experience to Nurse Midwife HPA. 

Professor Rhonda Wilson

Professor Rhonda Wilson is an internationally recognised mental health nursing scientist with a research focus on digital health interventions. She is Professor of Mental Health Nursing at RMIT University where she leads an innovative digital mental health nursing laboratory. 

As a Wiradjuri (First Nation) descendent, and member of CATSINaM (Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses and Midwives) she is a vigorous advocate and activist for the promotion of cultural safety and decolonisation in our education and health institutions. 

She has published extensively in international journals, books and conferences. She has a track record of leading national and international mental health mixed methods research programs, including using methods suited to priority populations, and First Nations peoples. 

Professor Wilson has worked in a wide range of rural and regional clinical registered nursing roles throughout Northern Queensland, NW Victoria, SW Queensland and the New England region of NSW. She has held academic roles in Australia, Denmark and New Zealand. 

During lockdown restrictions at the height of a Covid-19 outbreak in Walgett, NSW 2021, she partnered with Walgett Aboriginal Medical Service and her university colleagues to go to Walgett to undertake an early humanitarian vaccination campaign to provide urgent protection for the local community. 

Professor Wilson continues with a wide international and national network and program of research based flexibly on the traditional Darkinjung Country, Central Coast NSW, Australia. 

She is the current President of the peak body, Australian College of Mental Health Nurses. 

Katherine Neil

Katherine is a Registered Nurse and Midwife with a career spanning over 30 years. She is an experienced executive leader who has focused her career on improving the lives of all Australians, particularly those living in regional, rural and remote areas.  

She is passionate about the delivery of quality health care and the development of equitable and sustainable models, with a specific focus on vulnerable and at-risk populations. Katherine champions the role that nurses and midwives play in achieving positive health outcomes. 
Katherine is currently the CEO of Access Community Housing Company, was the former CEO of CRANAplus and has held senior roles at the Royal Flying Doctors Service (Qld Section) and Uniting Care. Katherine has post graduate qualifications in midwifery, leadership and management, and holds a Master of Public Health.   
Katherine is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and has served on a number of not-for-profit Boards. She currently sits on the Queensland Board of the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia.