Australian Volunteers International

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March 2, 2022

AVI welcomes new Board Chair

After an incredible nine-year term as Board Chair, Kathy Townsend has handed over to Julie Hamblin.

We congratulate Kathy on a remarkable tenure as AVI Chair and look forward to remaining closely engaged with her through future endeavours for the organisation. Kathy oversaw significant changes to AVI over the past five years and helped steer the Board, Organisation Leadership Team and staff, whom she came to know very well, with great confidence.

As a returned volunteer who spent two years in Kuching Sarawak, Kathy went on to work in international development in Malaysia and Pakistan and maintains an active personal and professional interest in the sector. Having run her own business in executive recruitment for 21 years, she remains a Director of AVI’s own end-to-end recruitment entity, Pacific People.

Julie brings to the position extensive experience in the health law, governance, disability and international development sectors. For many years, she ran her own legal practice specialising in health regulation, clinical risk, privacy and bioethics. She also has a particular interest in global health and human rights, having worked with the United Nations Development Programme, DFAT, UNAIDS and other organisations on projects relating to public health and HIV/AIDS in more than 20 countries in Asia, the Pacific, Africa and Eastern Europe.

Julie has served on numerous government and other advisory bodies, including the Australian Research Integrity Committee, the NSW Health Ethics Advisory Panel, and the Attorney-General’s International Pro Bono Advisory Group. She is an experienced Non-Executive Director and other roles have included Chair of Autism Spectrum Australia, Deputy Chair of Plan International Australia, and board member of the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman and the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.

On behalf of everyone at AVI, we thank Kathy for her heartfelt dedication to our organisation and its people and extend a warm welcome to Julie.