New Executive Director appointed for WAHTN

Professor Gary Geelhoed has been appointed as the new Executive Director of the Western Australian Health Translation Network (WAHTN).

Gary is currently the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) at the WA Department of Health, having worked at the Department since 2013. In addition to his role as CMO, Gary also held the position of Assistant-General of the Clinical Services and Research division at the Department of Health. He completed his MBBS at UWA and has held senior positions in hospitals and the Health Department. He has served on numerous WA and national health committees and brings substantial expertise to the position. Gary has actively worked to forge closer ties between WA hospitals and the research community to promote greater innovation and best practice in clinical care. He was involved in the establishment of the WAHTN as a NHMRC-recognised Advanced Health and Research Translational Centre (AHRTC). Gary commences a three-year appointment at WAHTN in April 2018.

WAHTN expresses its sincere appreciation for the immense contribution of the retiring Executive Director, Professor John Challis and wish him the very best as he heads back to Vancouver. John commenced at UWA as Pro Vice-Chancellor (Health and Medical Research) in February 2014. He provided leadership in driving local, national and international collaboration, to build capacity in key areas of strength, and to advise on infrastructure and investment. He was instrumental in promoting the WAHTN towards its recognition as an AHRTC operating at an international level. This state-wide health translation initiative involves the Department of Health, WA universities, Medical Research Institutes and the State’s teaching hospitals, working together to accelerate the translation of research and innovation into clinical care. In September 2015, John became the inaugural WAHTN Director and steered this network to develop into a strong entity. He also initiated the Science on the Swan Conference in Perth, which has now become an annual fixture for medical professionals.