Mental Health Australia appoints Carolyn Nikoloski as CEO
Mental health policy specialist Carolyn Nikoloski has been appointed as the new Chief Executive Officer of Mental Health Australia.
Joining Mental Health Australia on 12 April 2023, Nikoloski brings extensive experience in policy, strategy and adaptive leadership, having led Beyond Blue’s policy reform agenda to provide better follow-up care for people who have attempted suicide and increase the provision of mental health services across the country.
Nikoloski has over 15 years’ experience in the mental health sector, having held the positions of chief strategy officer and interim chief experience officer at Beyond Blue, and serves as a Director of national health promotion charity Prevention United.
“I’m looking forward to continuing the organisation’s work to navigate the aftershocks of the COVID-19 pandemic as we now enter what is essentially a mental health pandemic,” Nikoloski said.
“The sector is under considerable strain following historic underinvestment, with many mental health professionals being forced to close their books to new clients. The sad and concerning reality of this capacity crisis is that waiting lists are far too long for far too many Australians who are desperately seeking and needing help.
“That said, I’m confident that Mental Health Australia, its members and broader stakeholders are making significant inroads in mental health advocacy and policy reform nationally to ensure things improve.
“I’m looking forward to working with our member organisations, community groups, media and communities around the country to ensure that all Australians are able to access the mental health care they need, when they need it.”
Matt Berriman, Chair of Mental Health Australia, welcomed Nikoloski’s appointment.
“Carolyn’s dedication to improving every Australian’s mental health, in addition to her business acumen, progressive view on future needs and her expertise, especially in policy reform and development, makes her perfectly suited to the role of CEO of Mental Health Australia,” Berriman said.
“Her passion for mental health advocacy and supporting those in need was evident through her years fighting for better funding for mental health issues, her commitment to prevention and intervening early, and the implementation of policies to better serve vulnerable communities across the country,” Berriman said.
Nikoloski replaces Dr Leanne Beagley, who departed the Mental Health Australia late last year after serving nearly three years as CEO.