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RSL LifeCare appoints new CEO following significant governance failures

Laurie Leigh has been appointed RSL LifeCare’s new CEO after it was found previous leaders breached charity guidelines

RSL LifeCare has appointed a new Chief Executive Officer following a probe into the former CEO’s misuse of funds and significant governance failures.

Laurie Leigh will step into the role, bringing experience across aged care, mental health, healthcare, Aboriginal health and an ability to lead complex organisations.

Chairman of RSL LifeCare Board, Andrew Condon, said the Board looks forward to her leadership as it moves to implement its core services in the sector.

“A hallmark of her career has been transformational change of organisations, building skills and relationships in complex multi-stakeholder environments together with sound corporate governance, financial and human resource management.

“Her experience, coupled with her thoughtful style and passion for leading change, equip her as an excellent advocate, both externally and within our organisation.”

Leigh was formerly Chief Operating Officer and Deputy CEO at the Whiddon Group, a leading not-for-profit aged and community service provider.

In this role, Leigh led the development of new models of care and innovation, for which Whiddon was recognised for in the Australian Financial Review’s ‘Top 50 innovative companies in Australia and New Zealand’ in 2017 and 2018.

“Characteristics of Laurie’s commitment to building a culture of all-round excellence is her desire to create a great place to live, work or receive services.

“Her focus is on creating a ‘vision that pulls you’: to be the best you can, in support of those entrusted in our care,” Condon said.

RSL LifeCare was investigated for its non-compliance with the charity’s fundraising authority under the NSW state Fundraising Act. The charity then committed to 15 measures to demonstrate improved governance and transparency of finances.

The compliance action against the RSL comes after charity directors were found to have received remuneration and allowances in breach of their obligations. Condon said in a statement in May that the RSL was working on improving its governance.

“On behalf of the Board of Directors at RSL LifeCare, we congratulate Laurie on her appointment and invite everyone to welcome her as she leads us into the next chapter,” Condon said.

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