Adj. Prof Russell Harrison
Russell Harrison commenced with Western Health on 26 February 2013 in the position of Executive Director Operations.
Russell came to us directly from the UK, where he held a range of senior positions over a period of 16 years within the National Health Service and prior to that, in private Health. His experience spans acute hospitals, mental health, the community sector and commissioning health services.
Russell holds a range of qualifications, including an MBA from one of the UK’s leading universities (Durham) and a Certificate in International Health Care Management from Yale Business School.
He has held a number of executive management roles and has a substantial track record in a many relevant areas including: executive leadership; clinical reform and governance; service innovation and models of care; risk and change management; workforce development; and managing demand within the constraints of tight financial resources. Russell was appointed as the CEO of Western Health in 2017.
Mr John Ferraro
John Ferraro commenced with Western Health in August 2021 as Deputy Executive Director Operations before stepping into the Chief Operating Officer role.
John has more than 20 years’ experience in health including senior executive appointments at Austin Health as the Interim Chief Operating Officer, Eastern Health as the Executive Director Clinical Operations and most recently at the Department of Health as the Executive Director Commissioning and Logistics for Victoria’s vaccination program.
In addition to his extensive operational and executive experience, John has significant corporate governance expertise. He was previously the Board Chair of Banyule Community Health Service for 10 years, former Chair of the Eastern Melbourne Primary Health Care Collaborative Governance Group and a former Board Director of the Victorian Deaf Society.
Dr Abi Arul
Abi joined Western Health in January 2022 as a Deputy Chief Medical Officer before stepping into the role of Chief Medical Officer (Acting) in November 2022.
Abi graduated with Honours from the University of Liverpool, in the UK in 2005 and has worked as a junior doctor both in the UK and in a variety of hospitals here in Victoria. She has also worked as GP prior to doing her Fellowship training with the Royal College of Medical Administrators (RACMA) and completing a Masters in Health Administration (MHA).
She has a keen interest in junior doctor wellbeing and is a member of the PMCV Workforce Committee and an accredited surveyor for prevocational training in Victoria. Abi is also an advocate for equity and inclusion in healthcare and the promotion of women in leadership.
Mr Shane Crowe
Shane commenced in the role of Executive Director Nursing & Midwifery in September, 2017. He joined us from Austin Health where he was the Acting Chief Nursing Officer. His wide-ranging experience in nursing workforce leadership and his managerial, interpersonal and analytical skills, combined with his extensive clinical knowledge, network and project management skills, are valuable attributes in the role.
In a previous role, as Project Director of the Olivia Newton John Cancer & Wellness Centre Transition, Shane led the development and implementation of the new model of care and the commissioning and opening of the facility. Shane worked with the Department of Health and Human Services on an extended secondment, as Manager of Workforce Innovation and Reform and led the development and successful introduction of the Safe Patient Care (Nurse and Midwife to Patients Ratios) Act 2015 in Victoria. During 2016, Shane served as Director, Support Services and Project Director for the Commissioning of a Short Stay Unit/Psychiatric Assessment and Planning Unit at the Austin.
Adj. Prof Ms Sandy Schutte
Sandy Schutte was appointed Executive Director People, Culture & Communications in June 2022.
Sandy's previous role was the Interim General Manager of Bacchus Marsh, Melton and Caroline Springs. This role, in conjunction with the transition team, supported staff through the transition process whist ensuring excellent patient care continued to be delivered. Sandy’s substantive role is the Director of Education and Learning at Western Health, where she has designed programs to build clinical and leadership capabilities to support Western Health's significant growth strategy.
Sandy is a passionate and positive leader with extensive operational experience leading large teams across multiple sites. Before joining Western Health in 2018, Sandy held the role of Director of Nursing at Austin Health. In this role, Sandy had extensive clinical and operational experience managing an Austin Health Campus, overseeing the delivery of aged care, operating suites, subacute and mental health inpatient beds and extensive outpatient and community rehabilitation services.
In addition to leadership and management in public health, Sandy has considerable experience in the corporate as a lead consultant for multinational mergers. She holds a master's in Business Administration and a postgraduate qualifications in HR, OHS and Critical Event Management.
Mr Mark Lawrence
Mark joined Western Health in 2011 as Executive Director Finance. Mark has a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting and a Diploma in Management.
Mark is currently Vice President of the Health Management Finance Association, the peak body for finance staff working in health services.
Prior to commencing at Western Health, for 11 years Mark was the CFO at Royal Freemasons, a large not for profit aged care provider. Prior to this Mark was with AMCOR for over 9 years in a variety of roles, culminating in the position of Commercial Manager for the Recycling division.
Mark has over 25 years’ experience in the Finance sector, with additional experience in supply, purchasing and warehouse management.
Privately Mark has held committee positions with a number of organisations such as the Standardbred Breeders and Stud Masters Association, 13th Beach Golf Club and is a former director of Chaplains Without Borders.
Mark is currently Western Health’s Chief Financial Officer.
Ms Susan Wardle
Ms Susan Wardle joined Western Health in January 2020 in the newly established role of Executive Director Strategy and Partnerships.
Susan has wide-ranging experience in strategic development roles within healthcare. Previous to this position, Susan was the Executive General Manager Partnerships at the Royal Australasian College of Surgeon. For a decade prior to joining the College, she was the Executive Director of Strategy, Marketing and Business Development at Epworth HealthCare. Susan holds an MBA from Monash University in conjunction with Stern School of Business, New York University.
Susan’s interest in joining Western Health is driven by her passion for healthcare delivery and her commitment to making an impact in fast paced and collaborative environments. She is also passionate about driving positive outcomes for patients and seeking to maximise the best outcomes through technology.
The role of Executive Director Strategy and Partnerships includes the development and oversight of the new Western Health Strategic Plan, as well as corporate business planning, and service planning for the exciting development of two community hospitals. The portfolio also includes the Performance and Information team ensuring that we bring service planning and information together to inform business cases provided to the Department of Health and Human Services, in order for us to support the community of the West in the best way possible.
Ms Tess Lye
Tess Lye joined Western Health in February 2022 in the position of General Counsel.
Tess is a commercial lawyer who has worked in the healthcare, government, banking and mining sectors, and in volunteer roles in the arts and community services. Prior to joining Western Health, Tess held the position of General Counsel and Director, Corporate Governance and Risk with Epworth HealthCare. Tess is currently the Deputy Chairperson of The Sexual Assault and Family Violence Centre.