Meet Susan

I moved to Boroondara 18 years ago, together with my husband, raising our three sons here. Born in San Francisco, I have lived in six countries and am now an Australian. I am a freelance journalist and consumer health advocate leading change in a national health organisation. I am not a member of any political party.

I love Boroondara and am enthusiastic about applying my skills in community engagement, advocacy and effective governance to take this unique moment in history to reimagine our approach to local community.

As the National Engagement Advisor at the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (Ahpra), I work to improve the experience of both health practitioners and the public through listening to them and using their feedback to design better, more humane and efficient systems. A writer by background, with degrees from Duke (BA) and Stanford (MA) universities, I have published extensively in Australia, including writing for The Age, Good Weekend and The Big Issue. My book, The Upside of Down, was released in 2014. 

Two of my three adult sons live with a serious chronic illness; in response to this experience, I have served for nearly two decades as a consumer representative across a range of organisations. Among other things, I was the inaugural chair of the Family Advisor Council at the Royal Children’s Hospital. Since 2013 I have been the co-organiser of an annual fundraiser, supporting high-quality medical research in Australia; we have now raised more than $850,000.

I have always volunteered in community organisations, for example:

  • serving as president of the Parents & Friends Association at my sons’ high school
  • coordinating the ‘Walking school bus’ at our local primary school
  • running a monthly support group for more than a decade for families impacted by cystic fibrosis

I care deeply about the mental health and well-being of my community. Especially during this pandemic, I believe it’s important we look after ourselves and each other. I have completed training in Mental Health First Aid and hope to bring more mental health resources into the Riversdale and Boroondara communities.

I also thrive on activity and have always participated in sport and encouraged it in my family. I captained my basketball team to the California state championship (many years ago!) and played volleyball on a scholarship at Duke University. I continue to play on both a local netball and basketball team, though my level would now definitely be categorised as ‘amateur’. I also roller-skate, it’s true, including doing an annual 65 km skate for charity.

I am hard-working, solutions focussed and committed to applying my person-centred skills and experience to ensure the community is at the heart of everything we do.

I moved to Boroondara 18 years ago, together with my husband, raising our three sons here. Born in San Francisco, I have lived in six countries and am now an Australian. I am a freelance journalist and consumer health advocate leading change in a national health organisation. I am not a member of any political party.

I love Boroondara and am enthusiastic about applying my skills in community engagement, advocacy and effective governance to take this unique moment in history to reimagine our approach to local community.

As the National Engagement Advisor at the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (Ahpra), I work to improve the experience of both health practitioners and the public through listening to them and using their feedback to design better, more humane and efficient systems. A writer by background, with degrees from Duke (BA) and Stanford (MA) universities, I have published extensively in Australia, including writing for The Age, Good Weekend and The Big Issue. My book, The Upside of Down, was released in 2014. 

Two of my three adult sons live with a serious chronic illness; in response to this experience, I have served for nearly two decades as a consumer representative across a range of organisations. Among other things, I was the inaugural chair of the Family Advisor Council at the Royal Children’s Hospital. Since 2013 I have been the co-organiser of an annual fundraiser, supporting high-quality medical research in Australia; we have now raised more than $850,000.

I have always volunteered in community organisations, for example:

  • serving as president of the Parents & Friends Association at my sons’ high school
  • coordinating the ‘Walking school bus’ at our local primary school
  • running a monthly support group for more than a decade for families impacted by cystic fibrosis

I care deeply about the mental health and well-being of my community. Especially during this pandemic, I believe it’s important we look after ourselves and each other. I have completed training in Mental Health First Aid and hope to bring more mental health resources into the Riversdale and Boroondara communities.

I also thrive on activity and have always participated in sport and encouraged it in my family. I captained my basketball team to the California state championship (many years ago!) and played volleyball on a scholarship at Duke University. I continue to play on both a local netball and basketball team, though my level would now definitely be categorised as ‘amateur’. I also roller-skate, it’s true, including doing an annual 65 km skate for charity.

I am hard-working, solutions focussed and committed to applying my person-centred skills and experience to ensure the community is at the heart of everything we do.