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New CEO for the Heart Foundation

National Board President, Dr Jennifer Johns AM said following a national search for a CEO, the Heart Foundation was delighted to announce Professor Kelly would take up the role on 1 August.

“Professor Kelly has led sector reform and internal governance for aged care for the past four years as CEO of Aged & Community Services Australia,” Dr Johns said.

“Professor Kelly is an outstanding choice to become the Heart Foundation’s CEO.

“His strong leadership skills, extensive clinical, management and consulting background in the health and aged care sector will help the Heart Foundation continue with its mission to fight heart disease in Australia.”

Dr Johns said Professor Kelly’s philanthropic and advocacy experience during his nine years on The Smith Family Board made him an exceptional appointment at a vital time for our organisation.

“There has never been a more important time for the Heart Foundation to increase the awareness of heart health initiatives throughout the community,” Dr Johns said.

“As Australia’s number one killer, heart disease is clearly identified as a National Health Priority and the Heart Foundation is well placed across Australia to play a leading role in the education and research agenda.”

“Having started my career as a cardiac nurse, it is wonderful to have the opportunity to work at the Heart Foundation, and I am looking forward to working with the dedicated and committed staff to improve heart health across the country,” Prof Kelly said.


Professor Kelly has academic appointments with the Sydney Nursing School at Sydney University and the Faculty of Health at University of Technology, Sydney.  He also has legal background and experience as a partner in national law firms.

He was the recipient of the 2010 Alumni Award for Excellence, University of Technology, Sydney and in 2009 was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia.

In 2010 Professor Kelly held the position of Commonwealth Aged Care Commissioner, appointed by the Federal Government.

From the Heart Foundation Media Release 15 July 2016

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