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202 Glen Osmond Rd
Fullarton SA 5063

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Keynote Speakers


Associate Professor Lydia Dennett

Ms Dennett was appointed to the role of Chief Nurse and Midwifery Officer for SA Health in December 2011.

Ms Dennett trained as an intensive care nurse before immigrating to Australia from London.

In 2004, Ms Dennett was appointed as the Director of Nursing/Campus Manager of Western Hospital, and Divisional Director of Cardiology and Intensive Care Services for Western Health. Ms Dennett was subsequently appointed as the Executive Director of Nursing and Midwifery for Western Health in 2007.

In her current role as the Chief Nurse and Midwifery Officer for SA Health, Lydia has the responsibility of providing professional leadership, as well as providing advice and direction on a diverse range of nursing and midwifery issues, including workforce planning, development and reform, recruitment and retention, best practice initiatives, research and policy development. In line with this is the requirement to influence and represent the professions to continue to enhance the quality of care delivered to consumers, and to ensure that practice is contemporary and evidence-based.

Lydia has a strong commitment to ensuring continuing education and professional development of nurses and midwives.

Lydia holds a Masters degree in Business of Management and is an Adjunct Associate Professor with Victoria University, Melbourne, Victoria.

She has been a surveyor for the Australian Council on Healthcare Standards since 2005.

Nicole Graham

Nicole Graham is the Chief Executive of scosa, the Spastic Centres of South Australia Inc.

Qualified with a Master of Business Administration and Bachelor of Management (Employee Relations), Nicole brings a wealth of skills and knowledge crucial to building on scosa’s service excellence at an extraordinarily young age. In fact she is the youngest ever CEO of scosa and one of the youngest CEOs in the country.

When she joined scosa in 2004 from a human resources role at Mitsubishi Motors, it was her first taste of just how challenging life can be working with a not for profit group.

Within three years of joining scosa, Nicole was appointed General Manager of Workforce Planning and Development and later General Manager of Client Services.

In this role Nicole implemented a new model for service delivery which was a world’s first.

In 2007, Nicole commenced a Master of Business Administration for professional development and recognition of her business acumen.

In 2008, an appointment as Deputy Chief Executive Officer whilst the existing CEO was on leave only served to whet her appetite even further for the top job. In March 2010 that dream was achieved.

Since becoming CEO, Nicole has driven a number of successful initiatives that most of all makes a positive difference in the lives of over 350 South Australians living with a disability.

Nicole has established a genuine respect and an excellent reputation within the disabilities sector through her active participation and representation on peak bodies and Government working parties.

Nicole contributes to develop the living and social skills of our clients so that they can become valued members of their local communities, enjoy activities and social interaction.

In addition to Nicole’s role at scosa, she is also the President of the YWCA of Adelaide and is Vice President on the National Board. These roles are a sign of Nicole’s commitment to social justice and community inclusion, and promoting the rights of all Australians.

Dr Saravana Kumar

Dr. Kumar is a Senior Lecturer and the Deputy Director of the International Centre for Allied Health Evidence (iCAHE), School of Health Sciences, and University of South Australia. He was the NHMRC NICS-MAC Fellow from 2008-2010 and in 2010 was awarded a South Australian Tall Poppy Award.  Dr. Kumar, as a health services researcher, has keen interest in bridging the gap between research evidence and clinical practice. Underpinning this interest is identifying and breaking down of barriers in uptake of research evidence into clinical practice and its influence in the quality of health care service delivery. Dr. Kumar also teaches topics on evidence-based practice and evidence implementation to students and health professionals, nationally and internationally. He also acts as a consultant to several national and international agencies on issues pertinent to evidence-based practice.

Prof Kerry Reid-Searl

Dr Kerry Reid Searl is a Professor at CQUniversity Rockhampton Campus. Kerry has had extensive nursing experience in the Torres Strait and regional Queensland. She has been involved in undergraduate nursing education for the past 21 years and has been the recipient of numerous teaching awards. Some of these include the CQUniversity Vice Chancellors Teaching Award in 2008 and 2010, a Faculty of Science Engineering and Health teaching award in 2008 and 2010, an Australian Learning and Teaching Citation for her outstanding contribution to student learning in 2008 and 2012, was named Pearson/Australian Nurse Teacher Society- Nurse Teacher of the Year in 2009 and in 2012 was awarded and Australian University Teaching Excellence Award. Kerry has become known nationally and internationally for her pioneering work in creating, designing and researching an innovative simulation strategy which suspends undergraduate nursing students in disbelief.   Kerry is also well published in international journals for her work around medication safety and has been the principal author, as well co author, of several nursing texts books which have been sold nationally and internationally.