• Board of Directors

    Nick Loukas (Chairperson)

    Nick Loukas is a local Pharmacist in Cairns. Finishing his schooling in Cairns and owning his first pharmacy at 22 years old in Mareeba. He then returned home to Cairns in 1995 where he owned a number of pharmacies in Cairns and Smithfield. He founded and developed the V Pharmacy and Alive Pharmacy Warehouse brands.

    At present, Nick is the Director and Brand Manager of Alive Pharmacy Warehouse Group with business interests in Cooktown, Cairns, Townsville, and Gladstone. In 2011, Nick was invited to work with JCU as Chair of the Pharmacy Advisory Committee and continues to hold this position. He also has a Bachelor of Business and studied at Harvard Business School. Nick is a fellow of the Australian College of Pharmacy Practice and Management and Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Nick is a director of the Tour of the Tropics Bicycle race and a keen bike rider and triathlete. His passions are his family and growing businesses, the Cairns region and leadership.

    Suzanne Andrews

    Sue is the Chief Executive of Gurriny Yealamucka Health Service, a community-based health organisation that delivers holistic primary health care to the people of Yarrabah, an Aboriginal community near Cairns.

    During her time as CEO, Sue has led the drive for the transfer of responsibility for delivering primary healthcare services from the Queensland Government to Gurriny Yealamucka, a first in Queensland, with Gurriny now looking after all primary healthcare services in the community, including women’s and maternal health, sexual health, chronic disease, and social and emotional wellbeing.

    In 2016, Sue was also a key driver for the establishment of the first pharmacy to open in Yarrabah in nearly 20 years, ensuring the Yarrabah community had a wider range of primary and allied health services.

    Prior to her appointment as CEO in 2012, Sue was the Finance Manager at Gurriny Yealamucka for more than five years, leading and managing the day-to-day financials of the organisation with a budget of $8 million.

    Sue has also previously worked with Cape York Digital Network, implementing and rolling out projects within each Cape community around the use of technology, and Gindaja Treatment and Healing Centre in Yarrabah, an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander residential rehabilitation service which caters for both men and women with drug and alcohol-related problems.

    A proud Aboriginal woman who grew up in Yarrabah, Sue is passionate about closing the gap in Indigenous health disadvantage. Sue was appointed a director of Northern Queensland Primary Health Network in 2017.

    Debra Burden

    Debra Burden, a degree-qualified accountant, is the CEO of mental health and suicide prevention provider selectability.  The selectability group includes niche community services RTO selectability Training.

    Debra has previously held CEO and executive management positions with Queensland Country Credit Union and Health Fund, ASX listed dental services company 1300SMILES, and Canegrowers Burdekin.

    Debra’s business management expertise has been recognised with her being awarded the QLD Business Review Women in Business Award Winner and the Queensland Telstra Business Women’s Award Winner (Corporate Sector).

    Debra, a Fellow of both the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Institute of Leaders and Managers, has extensive board-level experience having successfully completed the AICD course twice and held Board positions in numerous companies as Chair, Deputy Chair, and Company Secretary, including currently holding the position of Director of Townsville Hospital and Health Service and Deputy Chair of North and West Remote Health.

    Dr Richard Malone

    Dr Richard Malone (Deputy Chair)

    Born in Atherton, North Queensland, Richard was schooled on the Gold Coast and trained at Royal Brisbane Hospital. He moved to Mackay in 1988 and has been a principal at Ambrose Medical Group since 1989.

    During his time in Mackay, Richard has served on various school boards, the Mater Hospital Ethics committee, and sub committees.

    He has a long-term commitment to medical education and has been involved with teaching students and registrars. He is a senior examiner with the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners.

    Richard spent 10 years as honorary Director of Palliative Care Services at Mackay Mater Hospital, and is currently the President of the Mackay Branch of the Leukaemia Foundation. In his practice he has an interest in preventive medicine, aged care and sports medicine.

    He is a medical provider to Rowing Australia and holds senior coaching qualifications.

    Luckbir Singh

    Luckbir is a Director at MacDonnells Law, one of the leading Queensland law firms. He has been recognised for his legal skills and client outcomes by Lawyer’s Weekly as a finalist in the 2016 Australian Partner of the Year Awards and Queensland Young Lawyer of the Year in 2008.

    Luckbir has over the last 20 years been involved in many of the most significant, highly publicised and complex corporate law matters in North Queensland. His areas of expertise are corporate advisory, governance and mergers and transactions.

    Mr Singh is also a Director of Cairns COUCH Limited, Deputy Chair Cairns and Hinterland and Hospital Health Service, Queensland State Council member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and member of the Finance and Audit Committee for Tourism Tropical North Queensland.

    Luckbir was born and raised in North Queensland, with his family having lived in the region since the 1890s.

    Luckbir Singh

    Ben Tooth

    Ben is an Executive Manager with over 15 years of experience in executive management, finance, and accounting roles. Ben is currently the Chief Executive Officer of Ramsay Health Care’s Cairns facilities; the Cairns Private hospital, the Cairns Day Surgery, and The Cairns Clinic (inpatient mental health facility).

    Ben is currently a company director of Cairns Penny Bank Limited, and is Chair of the Audit Committee. Ben is also a director of the Cairns Catholic Diocese Development Fund and has previously held board roles including Far North Queensland Regional Development Australia.

    Ben is a chartered accountant having gained many years of experience at KPMG.

    Ben’s primary interest outside of work is spending time with his wife and two children.

    Cate Whalan

    In her early career, Cate graduated with a Bachelor of Pharmacy from the University of Queensland, interned at Mater Hospital Pharmacies in Brisbane, and registered in 1995 to be appointed as a pharmacist in the Royal Australian Army Medical Corps. She had postings in charge of barracks Medical Centre dispensaries, medication supply warehouses, and saw operational service with the Combined Health Element of the Peace Monitoring Group in Bougainville in 1998.

    Cate retired from the army to locum and part-time pharmacist in charge positions. In 2006 she purchased her first pharmacy in Townsville, and rebranded it ‘Cate’s Chemist’ with a shopping centre development in 2007. In 2017, Cate purchased another pharmacy in a Townsville GP Superclinic, and rebranded it to Cate’s Chemist Hyde Park with a junior partner. In 2018, Cate opened her third pharmacy at the Townsville Aboriginal & Islander Health Service.

    Cate maintains a clinical interest in chronic disease management for the elderly, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. In practise, she emphasises continuity of care, building health care teams across acute, primary, and specialist care, and between community and hospital pharmacy. Cate is a director of the Tropical Australian Academic Health Centre, a member of the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia, Townsville Chamber of Commerce, Townsville Enterprise, Committee Member for the Pharmacy Guild of Australia (Queensland Branch), a member of the JCU Pharmacy Advisory Committee and a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

    Cate Whalan

  • Clinical Councils

    The NQPHN Clinical Councils provide the NQPHN Clinical Governance sub-committee of the Board with contemporary advice on local health needs and priorities ensuring that there is an appropriate evidence base to regional commissioning, specifically, planning and design of services, stakeholder engagement, and continuing development and refinement of the Health Needs Assessment (HNA).

    The regional clinical councils provide a critical overview of the NQPHN regions to ensure that overall investment is in line with the regional HNA.

    The councils act in an advisory capacity to the NQPHN Clinical Governance Committee which has the delegated responsibility of the NQPHN Board.

    Membership of the councils is comprised of GPs, allied health professionals, mental health clinicians, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health professionals, community/practice nurses, and public health/health promotion representatives. They meet four times a year.

    Cairns, Cape, and Torres region

    Name Position
    Frankie Clive Cairns, Cape, and Torres Executive Director, NQPHN
    Dr Vladislav Matic General Practitioner
    Dr Rod Catton General Practitioner
    Dr Lynne Reid General Practitioner and JCU Educator
    Michael Delaney Community Pharmacist
    Ingrid Hagne Community Nurse and Diabetes Educator
    Dr Jason King Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Representative
    Dr Eddy Strivens Local HHS Representative
    Dr Tony Brown Local HHS Representative
    Gail Rogers Speech Language Pathologist

    Townsville region

    Name Position
    Melissa Freestun Townsville Executive Director, NQPHN
    Grant Collins Audiologist
    Dr Chris Daniel General Practitioner
    Sue Devine Public health
    Dianne Graham Community Pharmacist
    Dr Theunis Kotzee Senior Medical Officer
    Shane MacDonald Community Pharmacist
    Dr Christine O’Connor Clinical Psychologist
    Paul Parker Physiotherapist
    Michelle Ramm Occupational Therapist
    Professor Gracelyn Smallwood Nurse/Midwife and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander representative
    Dr Toni Weller GP and GPLO
    Cate Whalan Community Pharmacist

    Mackay region

    Name Position
    Karin Barron (Chair) Mackay Executive Director, NQPHN
    Dr Richard Malone General Practitioner
    Allannah Munro Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Representative
    Anna Croce Psychologist
    Debra Brown Dentist
    Dr Konrad Kangru General Practitioner
    Karalyn Huxhagen Pharmacist
    Kath O’Brien Registered Nurse
    Dr Pieter Nel Local HHS representative
    Tom McMillan Physiotherapist
  • Community Advisory Committees

    Northern Queensland Primary Health Network (NQPHN) has three Community Advisory Committees— one covering the Cairns, Cape and Torres region, one covering the Townsville region, and the third one covering the Mackay region.

    Committee members are comprised of health service users, consumers, carers, and community members, and act as a critical friend to NQPHN by bringing community perspective to advise the planning of activities and priorities. The committees’ advice is aligned NQPHN’s Health Needs Assessment and local and Commonwealth priorities.

    The aim of the Committees is to enable health system improvement and reform in local regions and for identified community groups. They ensure that community ideas drive improvements in person-centred care to deliver better health outcomes that are locally-relevant and aligned to local care experiences and expectations.

    The Committees also guide and advise NQPHN to improve its social impact, cultural security, and patient safety of programs it commissions throughout the region.

    As champions of change, members maximise and leverage their own community networks to improve health outcomes through coordinated care.

    The Community Advisory Committees play a key role in helping to guide NQPHN in ensuring activities are connected to and supported by the communities it serves.

    The Committees are chaired by the executive directors of NQPHN’s regional offices.

    Cairns, Cape, and Torres region

    Name Position 
    Frankie Clive Cairns, Cape, and Torres Executive Director, NQPHN (Committee Chair)
    Kylie Young Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women
    Semara Jose Deadly Inspiring Youth Doing Good
    Deborah Gillespie Tablelands Regional Council
    Cassie Biggs Centacare
    Stephen Bell Department of Education
    Stephen Ung Department of Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Partnerships
    Marcella Ketchell Department of Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Partnerships
    Ned David Torres Strait Islanders Regional Education Council
    Eddie Newman Northern Peninsula Regional Council Mayor
    Oriel Murray Gungarde Community Centre Aboriginal Corporation

    Mackay region

    Name Position 
    Karin Barron Mackay Executive Director, NQPHN (Committee Chair)
    Bridgett Mather Mackay Regional Council
    St Nigel Dalton Queensland Police
    Shanelle Dumma Carers Queensland
    Vivi Starrett Mackay and District Australian South Sea Islander Association
    Jeff Stewart- Harris Isaac Regional Council
    Dorne Wallace Regional Social Development Coalition
    Dr Anne Butcher Mackay Women’s Centre and Domestic Violence Resource Centre
    Bianca Fewquandie Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships
    Georgine Crawford George St Neighbourhood Centre
    Trudi Sebasio Mackay Hospital and Health Service

    Townsville region

    Name Position 
    Melissa Freestun Townsville Executive Director, NQPHN (Committee Chair)
    Meg Davis Townsville Multicultural Support Group
    Gabe Cairns Townsville Multicultural Support Group
    Matt Lyons Townsville Stronger Communities Action Group
    Lynore Geia James Cook University
    Wendy Lang Queensland Youth Services
    Jeremy Audas Richmond Fellowship Queensland
    Kim Neilsen The Good Shepherd Home
    Chandell Derham Defence Families of Australia
    Linda Robinson Department of Communities
    Kirsty Ahern Carers Queensland Ltd
    Pauline Woodbridge NQ Domestic Violence Resource Service
    Sally Butler Townsville City Council
  • NQPHN Constitution

  • Member organisations