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Thorne Harbour Health comprises two incorporated associations, the Victorian AIDS Council and the Gay Men’s Health Centre. Over the years, the membership has overlapped and the respective Boards, elected by the membership of each organisation, have worked together as a joint Board of Directors.

The board sets the strategic direction and policy for the organisation, and approves plans for business activities. It is responsible for:

  • Legal issues
  • Financial management
  • Employment of the Executive Director
  • Planning—strategic and operational
  • Policies
  • Promotion of the organisation
  • Reporting and accountability

All Members are entitled to inspect records relating to the process and outcome of VAC/GMHC Board elections. If you would like to inspect the records please contact us at enquiries@thorneharbour.org or call (03) 9865 6700.

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Chad Hughes (President)

Chad Hughes is a senior manager in the Burnet Institute’s Centre for International Health, leading programs addressing HIV in low income countries. He is an adviser to UNICEF, UNAIDS and the World Health Organization on how to work better with young people from key populations affected by HIV. He has convened the Australian Council for International Development’s working group on HIV, ensuring health and HIV are well placed in Australia’s foreign aid program.

Chad is passionate about supporting community organizations in designing and delivering high quality programs and building the evidence base to enhance program effectiveness through operational research.

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Christopher McDermott (Vice President)

Christopher McDermott is a Barrister at the Victorian Bar specialising in public law and common law briefs. Prior to joining the Bar, he was a Senior Lawyer with the Australian Government Solicitor (AGS) specialising in administrative law, appearing on behalf of Commonwealth Departments in complex litigation in federal courts and tribunals. Prior to working with the AGS, Christopher was Senior Associate to the Deputy Chief Justice of the Family Court. Before this, Christopher worked at the Attorney – General’s Department on human rights and access to justice strategies. In this role, he worked on the Same-Sex Relationships (Equal Treatment in Commonwealth Laws – Superannuation) Act 2008.

Christopher completed his law degree at the Australian National University in 2007 where he wrote a thesis on the discriminatory treatment of sexually active gay/bisexual men by the Australian Red Cross Blood Service. Christopher also completed a Master of Laws at the University of Melbourne in 2017.

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Janet Jukes (Treasurer)

Janet has held key leadership roles in effective organisations for over twenty-five years. Janet’s experience in the human services sector includes work in child, youth and family services, relationship and counselling services, homelessness, family violence, community legal sectors, AIDS Councils and universities. Janet’s current role is CEO of LifeWorks Relationship Counselling and Education Services a position she has held since September 2014.

A Centenary Medal recipient for outstanding service to young people, Janet is also a highly respected community activist with extensive networks in the lesbian, gay, and transgender communities. This activity includes being the founding Co Convenor and life member of the Victorian Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby, and member of the Victorian Attorney General’s Advisory Committee on GLBTI Issues (2000 to 2010) a ministerial advisory body that steered Victorian Government law reform recognising LGBTI parenting, equality in relationships recognition, human rights protections, and birth certificate recognition.

Janet is currently Deputy Chair for both No To Violence (peak body working with men to end family violence) and the National LGBTI Health Alliance (National Peak Body for LGBTIQ community controlled organisations), and has recently participated in advisory committees to establish a Pride Centre Victoria and the Marriage Equality Victorian Campaign.

A recurrent theme in Janet’s professional and voluntary work is a desire to see an improvement in the human dignity of those who are made vulnerable within our communities. Janet is concerned with making a sustainable difference and this been the key reason for her continued investment of her time energy and expertise in strong and effective LGBTI community controlled organisations such as Thorne Harbour Health.

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Chrissie Feagins

Chrissie was born and raised in Adelaide. She began her working life in television and then moved to the advertising industry.

Somehow, working in marketing and communications turned into her career – with long stints at global advertising agencies in London (for 18 years) and later Melbourne.

While she was working she was also having a life, marrying, raising two children and divorcing.

She has been associated with Thorne Harbour Health since 2006 when she offered her services pro bono on media and communications matters. She was a Board Member from 2009-2013 and she was a key member of the team that developed the 2014 rebranding.

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Jim Hyde

Jim Hyde is a former General Manager of the Victorian AIDS Council and was later Director of Public Health for Victoria in the Victorian Dept of Health. He recently retired as Professor, Public Health Policy at Deakin University and from the board of the Institute of Public Administration Of Australia, (Victoria). He is a Fellow of IPAA (FIPPA(Vic)) and of the Australian College of Health Services Management (FACHSM).

Jim has a longstanding interest in prevention and the systems that enable communities to take control of their own health. For two years he also presented a weekly late night current affairs program Is Nothing Sacred? on JOY 94.9 that regularly featured the latest issues in HIV prevention, treatment and policy. Jim is a strong advocate for community engagement and for evidence to inform our responses to HIV and health policy in general.

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Deborah Sykes

Deborah Sykes is Manager of the Health Service Governance Unit, Department of Health Victoria. Deborah has obtained extensive experience as a Division 1 nurse as well as having worked in the Nurse Policy Branch and the Health Service Management Innovation Council. As a nurse, Deborah was a District Nurse, with HIV as a specialty.

Deborah is passionate about outreach services and community consultation to improve health outcomes for sexually and gender diverse communities.

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Craig Brennan

Craig Brennan grew up in Melbourne and attended Monash University. Graduating with a Bachelor of Applied Science, Craig pursued a career in Information Technology.

This career quickly led Craig to the United States - Silicon Valley. As a Director of Project and Program Management with Oracle Corporation, Craig led IT project governance supporting global Sales and Marketing. In his current Project Management role, Craig oversees the modernisation of IT development systems at a leading Australian insurer. These experiences have left Craig with a passion for innovation and finding better ways to enable communication and collaboration.

A life time of volunteerism in the HIV sector, beginning in the late 80s, Craig currently volunteers with: Thorne Harbour Health, Living Positive Victoria, and The Institute of Many (TIM).

Board Policies

Last updated 4 December 2015

BPM-001 Code of Conduct and Board Responsibilities Policy

PDF 161.7 KB

BPM-002 Board work plan, committees and office bearers policy

PDF 170.6 KB

BPM-003 Board and CEO relationship policy

PDF 131.1 KB

BPM-004 Addressing conflict, grievance and complaints policy

PDF 94.8 KB

BPM-005 Board Financial Governance policy

PDF 160.0 KB

BPM-006 Risk and Quality policy

PDF 113.3 KB

BPM-007 Managing Conflict of interest policy

PDF 117.7 KB

BPM-008 Board Induction Policy

PDF 110.7 KB

BPM-009 VAC Delegations Policy

PDF 353.0 KB

BPM-10 Investment Policy

PDF 181.4 KB

BPM-011 Strategic Planning Procedure

PDF 89.7 KB

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