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Board members

Paul Bell

Cr Paul Bell (Board Chair)

Mr Paul Bell AM was appointed as Board Chair of Central Queensland Hospital and Health Board, following his appointment as a member in September 2015. Mr Bell has been a Central Highlands councillor since 1985, and has a strong history of board leadership including the health, energy, rail, superannuation and community service sectors. An electrical fitter/mechanic by trade, Mr Bell is chair of the Central Highlands Healthcare Ltd Board, a director of the Central Highlands (Qld) Housing Company Ltd, a director of the Queensland Police-Citizens Youth Welfare Association Board and a director of the CQ NRL Bid. He has been a director of Ergon Energy Corporation (1999-2005), Queensland Rail (2000-2008) and LG Super (2004-2014). He has a strong belief in the public sector and its ability to deliver, given the right leadership and clear objectives. Mr Bell was awarded the Order of Australia, General Division, in 2005. He has a Bachelor of Business Administration and is a Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Matthew Cooke

Mr Matthew Cooke

Mr Matthew Cooke is a proud Aboriginal and South Sea Islander from the Bailai (Byellee) people in Gladstone, Central Queensland.

Matthew joins the CQHH Board having a background in serving the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Controlled Health Sector as both a Director and CEO over the past 10 years.  Mr Cooke is currently the Chief Executive Officer for the Gladstone Region Aboriginal and Islander Community Controlled Health Service Limited t/a Nhulundu Health Service.

Matthew is actively involved in all aspects of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander affairs at national, state, regional and local levels.    In 2007 he was named Young Leader in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health, in 2008 received the Deadly Vibe Young Leader Award and in 2011 received the Australian Institute of Management 2011 Young Manager of the Year Award - Gladstone.

Mr Cooke is also a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Tina Zawila

Ms Tina Zawila

Ms Tina Zawila has over 30 years’ experience in the finance industry.  She is a Chartered Accountant, Financial Planner and Business Advisor and is a Director of a public accounting firm in Gladstone.

She is a non-Executive Director of Gladstone Airport Corporation, Chair of the Corporation’s Finance and Audit Committee and a member of the Nominations, Remuneration and Human Resources Committee.

Ms Zawila also serves on local not-for-profit boards including Gladstone Area Group Apprentices and EQIP Gladstone.

Ms Zawila holds a Bachelor of Business (Accounting) with Distinction and Diploma of Financial Planning.  She has completed the Australian Institute of Company Directors course and is a Fellow of the Institute of Managers and Leaders.

PJ Sobhanian

Dr Poya Sobhanian

Affectionately known as “PJ” by his local patients, Dr PJ Sobhanian’s passion is a healthier CQ. PJ is a University of Queensland (UQ) trained Dentist, who completed his placement at the local hospitals of Rockhampton, Yeppoon and Emerald. He later served at Gladstone Oral Health Services before establishing Sunvalley Dental P/L in Gladstone, where he remains the Managing Director. PJ has extensive Board, advisory and oversight committee experience, including currently, the Gladstone Regional Council Business Improvement Committee (Internal Audit) and previously on the UQ Academic Board and the UQ Faculty of Health and Sciences Board of Studies. PJ strongly believes in caring for our community and working together to achieve sustainable and sound outcomes for our community. These principles led him to be elected as a Councillor on the Gladstone Regional Council. PJ currently is Chair of the GRC Commercial Services Committee, overseeing Council commercial enterprise, such as the Gladstone Airport Corporation and the Gladstone Entertainment and Convention Centre, in addition to Council’s major business services of sewerage, waste and water. In his spare time PJ enjoys watching football with family and friends. He currently resides in Boyne Island.

Michelle Webster 

Ms Michelle Webster

Michelle has over 30 years experience as a local government professional serving various communities.  Over the past 10 years she has held a senior executive position with Central Highlands Regional Council and has lived and worked within Central Queensland, which has provided a broad understanding of the benefits and challenges living in rural and remote communities. From a professional perspective Michelle has been successful in the executive management of commercial portfolios including Emerald Airport, Saleyards, Quarries, Property acquisitions and disposals and an extensive housing portfolio.  Including delivery of extensive capital works programs.  She has also served as the Executive Officer of the Central Highlands (Qld) Housing Company Limited.  Michelle understands the importance of service provision to the community having been responsible for the delivery and improvement in customer service outcomes. Michelle brings to the Board qualifications in Accounting, Leadership, Management, Project Management and Planning and is the holder of a Bachelor of Commerce degree.  She is a graduate and member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and an Associate Member of CPA Australia.

Lisa Caffery

Ms Lisa Caffery

Mrs Lisa Caffery has extensive experience at a senior level in both the public and private sectors, specialising in rural and regional community development. Mrs Caffery is currently a self-employed consultant who provides strategic counsel in community engagement, stakeholder relations and communications. She is an active member of her local community and a dedicated consumer advocate for families in rural and regional areas. Lisa is particularly committed to improving health services and outcomes for people who live outside major cities. She brings strong governance and strategic experience from a range of board appointments including Chair of the Central Highlands Science Centre Inc. and non-executive director of the Central Highlands (QLD) Housing Company Ltd. Mrs Caffery holds a Bachelor of Arts (Journalism) and a Master of Public Relations.

Leann Wilson

Ms Leann Wilson

Ms Leann Wilson is the Executive Director of Regional Economic Solutions (RES) which is a majority Indigenous owned business in partnership with the global engineering and project management company Ausenco.  RES’s focus is to identify opportunities to secure local businesses and employment into project supply chains and engage with stakeholders to support business government and Indigenous groups to create sustainable economic and social development outcomes.

Ms Wilson is a 2016 Reconciliation Award Winner (Qld) and has been a category finalist in the Telstra Business Woman of the Year.  Ms Wilson joins the Board having extensive experience on Boards including being Chair of the National Rural Women’s Coalition, Deputy Chair of the National Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Healing Foundation, and board member of Australian Rural Leadership Foundation, Australian Red Cross Queensland Division and the Queensland Government Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Business and Innovation Reference Group. Ms Wilson is also a member of Directors Australia.

Fiona Coulson 

Professor Fiona Coulson

As the Deputy Vice-President Educational Strategy and Innovation at CQUniversity, Prof Fiona Coulson has a leading role in designing and implementing strategies that position CQUniversity as the most engaged, accessible, inclusive provider of tertiary education with a focus on the quality of the student learning journey. This includes oversight of CQUniversity’s key strategic program of work and innovative, high-profile “institutional legacy” projects which support the CQUniversity Strategic Plan.

Prior to the role of Deputy Vice-President, Office of Education Strategy and Innovation, Prof Coulson held previous roles at CQUniversity including Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Strategic Development), and Dean of the University’s largest School; the School of Health, Medical and Applied Sciences. Prof Coulson has a background in medical research, primarily in the relationship between diabetes and inflammation and their effects on gastrointestinal motility and respiratory function. Prof Coulson’s medical research has spanned across multiple institutions, including The University of Queensland, Griffith University, and the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, USA. Prof Coulson’s upbringing in small towns across outback Queensland has made her a powerful advocate for the role played by regional Australia in our national prosperity, and the transformative effect that training, education and research yields in non-metropolitan communities. Prof Coulson and her family proudly call Rockhampton, Central Queensland their home.

John Abbott 

Mr John Abbott

Mr John Abbott is currently the Chancellor of Central Queensland University, and the Board Chairman of both Queensland Wool Processing Pty Ltd, and Inter-port Global Consolidated Holdings Pty Ltd.
His experience includes many years of being Chairman of boards. He is also the Deputy Chairman of Regional Development Australia (Central and Western Queensland). Mr Abbott was appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia in recognition for his contribution to education, regional development and to the resources Industry.
Mr Abbott is also an experienced executive with over 40 years in all aspects of company leadership and governance in a wide range of industries. He has degrees in both Engineering and Law, and is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineers.

Last updated: 30 November 2015