Our Board

  • Phil Robinson PSM

    South Australian Director and Chair, Emerging Minds Board of Directors
    Phil is the inaugural Chair of the Board of Directors of Emerging Minds (previously the Australian Infant Child and Adolescent Mental Health Association - AICAFMHA) which was formed as a company in June 2000. Phil led the process for the formation of AICAFMHA from the original conference held in Adelaide in February 1995. Phil is actively involved in the Emerging Minds' National Workforce Centre for Child Mental Health together with ongoing advocacy for child and adolescent mental health with a stronger emphasis on the importance of interventions commencing in the early years of life. A clinical psychologist by training, Phil also has extensive management experience in both community and hospital settings. For many years, he held the position of Chief of Mental Health at the Women's and Children's Hospital in Adelaide and currently holds an Executive position within the Women's and Children's Health Network. In 2004, Phil was awarded the Public Service Medal (PSM) for his services to child and adolescent mental health.  
  • Dr Nick Kowalenko

    New South Wales Director and founding Deputy Chair, Emerging Minds Board of Directors
    Nick is the past Chair of the Faculty of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists) and chairs the Faculty's International Relations Committee spearheading regional workforce capacity building initiatives in Asia/Pacific with local partners. He is the Vice President of the International Association for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Allied Professions and a member of the International Teaching Faculty of Zero To Three in the USA. Nick is the Board Chair of the Tresillian Family Care Centres and has served on a number of Boards of organisations promoting children’s and parents’ mental health. He works in a variety of rural and metropolitan settings. As a clinical academic he has published papers on children living in families affected by parental mental illness, and early intervention early in life. He is an Associate Investigator on the National Health and Medical Research Council’s 'Million Minds' funded Australian Clinical Trials Network for Child and Youth Mental Health.
  • Kerry Hawkins

    Western Australian Director, Emerging Minds Board of Directors
    Ms Hawkins is the partner of a parent who experienced many years of extreme and enduring psychosis. They have three children together. Prior to giving up work in 2010 to focus on her husband's and family's recovery she was a project management consultant in the private sector and a strategic advisor for a federal government agency. She is a Graduate of Boston University's Global Leadership Institute's Recovery Class of 2013. She is currently a Trustee with the Psychosis Australia Trust, Co-Chair of the National Mental Health Consumer and Carer Forum, President of the Western Australian Association For Mental Health, Vice-President of Mental Health Carers Australia, and a Board Director for Helping Minds, Community Mental Health Australia, and the Recovery College of WA. She is also a Commissioner with the National Mental Health Commission. Her interest in trauma-informed, family-inclusive understandings of mental health drives a passion for implementing system reform through genuine co-production between lived experience expertise and service delivery expertise.
  • Rose Cuff

    Victorian Director, Emerging Minds Board of Directors
    Rose Cuff is an Occupational Therapist who has worked in child, adolescent, adult mental health and community-based services since 1987. Since 1995 she has focused entirely on working to support children and families where a parent or carer has mental health challenges through direct clinical practice, developing and implementing peer support programs, co-producing a wide range of resources, publishing widely, and conducting training and research. Rose was the Statewide Coordinator of the Victorian government funded FaPMI (Families where a Parent has a Mental Illness) program from its inception in 2007 until 2020, and currently is the CEO and co-founder of the Satellite Foundation. Rose is a passionate advocate for the voices of these children, young people and their families to be amplified and heard.
  • Dr Fiona Wagg

    Dr Fiona Wagg is Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist of 25 years experience with particular expertise in infant mental health, eating disorders, early onset psychosis, somatisation disorders and inpatient child and adolescent psychiatry. Dr Wagg is currently Director of Advanced Training in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the Health Education and Training Institute (HETI), a post she has held since 2019. In this role Dr Wagg participated in the redesign of the Formal Education Course for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Advanced Training in NSW. She has an ongoing role in teaching and supervising these trainees. Dr Wagg has extensive clinical experience, including 20 years’ experience in clinical leadership and service development during which she has been committed to developing integrated systems of care for young people and families across the infant, child and youth sector. She is and has been for many years involved with professional responsibilities within the RANZCP. She has research interests in infant mental health, neurodevelopment, clinical interventions, data linkage and health economics.
  • Dr Dave Pasalich

    Dr Dave Pasalich is an academic and clinical psychologist in the School of Medicine and Psychology, Australian National University. He has held clinical research fellowships in Australia, US and Canada. His research and clinical expertise is in evidence-based practice to promote child and family mental health and wellbeing, particularly in families exposed to adversities. This has involved grant-funded partnerships with child welfare and community mental health services to deliver and evaluate parent interventions. He is currently leading implementation trials of an attachment-based parent program in out-of-home care. Dave has received several awards for his work, including the ACT Young Tall Poppy Scientist of the Year Award and an Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Researcher Award.
  • Dr Elisabeth Hoehn

    Dr Elisabeth Hoehn is the Medical Director and Consultant Child Psychiatrist for Queensland Centre for Perinatal and Infant Mental Health. Elisabeth has more than 30 years’ experience in child and youth mental health, including clinical service delivery, service management and development, quality enhancement and outcome evaluation. She is passionate about perinatal and infant mental health service development, family-centred and community-based care, collaborative practice, training, and advocacy. Elisabeth has been instrumental in the conceptualisation, development, and implementation of the mental health continuum of care for parents in the perinatal period, infants, young children, and their carers in Queensland.

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