Board Directors

Our board is made up of these members:

Professor Wendy Cross (RN, MEd, PhD, FACN, FACMHN), Chairperson

Professor Wendy Cross is the Dean, School of Nursing and Healthcare Professions at Federation University, Australia. She has built a successful career in nursing, nursing research and nurse education and has been awarded numerous research and teaching grants and has extensive experience in a range of nursing and management roles. Prof Cross has extensive experience in strategic and operational management and governance, practice development, clinical governance, policy and procedure development, performance management and appraisal, workforce planning and other activities. In 2007, she joined Monash University, School of Nursing and Midwifery with a focus on mental health nursing research and was appointed Professor and Head of the School of Nursing and Midwifery, a post she held from 2009 to 2016, when she was appointed to the position of Associate Dean, Nursing and Allied Health, in the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences. She has a Bachelor of Applied Science in Advanced Nursing, a Master of Education by research (Ed Psych) and a Doctor of Philosophy (Transcultural Psychiatry). Wendy’s primary research interests include mental health and mental health nursing, clinical supervision, service evaluation and development, workplace learning and broad-based research methods including both quantitative and qualitative paradigms.

Pip Leedham, FAR Committee Chair

Pip is an experienced health service executive who held policy development, purchasing and operational management roles.  She has  keen interest in health system reform particularly in the broader primary health arena and its interface with the acute and aged care sectors.  Prior to ceasing full time employment with the Department of Health and Human Services she was a deputy secretary and had more than 5 years as the Director Community Planning and Strategy and 10 years as the CEO Primary Health.  Pip is currently a member of the Menzies Institute of Medical Research Board and vice-president of Tennis Tasmania.  She is a former member of the University of Tasmania Council, the Department of Health Audit Committee, the Tasmanian Institute of Sport Board and National Council of the Australian Hospitals and Healthcare Association.

Tracy Denning, Board Director

Tracy Denning joined the AOAC Board of Directors in September 2018. Tracy currently works as a Senior Lecturer in Anatomy at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) and has been involved in a broad range of health professional programs over the last ten years. She is a registered osteopath with seven years of private practice experience. Prior to commencing her appointment with RMIT, Tracy held a Lecturer appointment at Victoria University (VU) and from late 2013 led the development of the first integrated osteopathy program in Australia. The new program was developed in 2014-15 and implemented in 2016. Tracy is passionate about quality education in osteopathy and health professional education. She has experience in developing and implementing simulated based education (SBE) activities into osteopathy education and in other health disciplines. Her particular interest in SBE is Simulated Patients (SPs), where actors, students or volunteers are trained to portray the role of a patient presenting to the student with pre-determined condition/s that meet specified learning outcomes for the students.

Dr Danielle Baxter, Accreditation Committee Chair

Danielle is a registered osteopath with ten years of experience in private practice, who still enjoys treating her patients each week. Danielle has also completed a PhD – evaluating the feasibility of an adjunctive manual therapy protocol for people with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). As part of her PhD, Danielle conducted a clinical study at a metropolitan hospital in Melbourne, with an embedded qualitative study to evaluate the acceptability and implementation of the study. Since 2015, Danielle has also worked at RMIT University as a lecturer where she has extensive experience in program curriculum design, course coordination, and designing content and assessment. Danielle has also served on the AOAC Accreditation committee since 2016 and was an active participant in the Review of the Osteopathy Accreditation Standards. Additionally, Danielle was contracted by the AOAC Qualification and Skills Assessment Committee to develop the written examination for the second stage of the Standard Pathway Assessment for registration to be an osteopath in Australia.

Melanie Doyle-Hunt, Governance Committee Chair

Melanie has been a registered Osteopath for over 20 years with extensive experience in Osteopathic clinical practice, education, training, accreditation, and assessment. She currently practices part-time as an osteopath and is an Approved Panel Member for AHPRA. Melanie is a member of the Qualifications and Skills Assessment Committee (QSAC) of AOAC and was actively involved in the recent review and redevelopment of the Standard Pathway Assessment for overseas-trained osteopaths. She is a current Professional Reference Group (PRG) member for the Review of Accreditation Standards for Osteopathy Programs in Australia.

Melanie worked in the Osteopathy program at Victoria University (VU) from 2010 until 2020 as a lecturer, tutor, and clinical educator.  While there she was involved in curriculum development for the Case-Based, Problem Based and Technology Enhanced Learning components of the VU integrated program. She was also engaged by private practice in clinical education and development roles supporting osteopathic graduates and other allied health professionals.

Associate Professor Patrick McLaughlin, QSAC Chair

Patrick has a Physical Education degree and a PhD in biomechanics, having spent the early part of his career in the Victoria University biomechanics laboratory environment and working with elite sports in the analysis of techniques. This biomechanics expertise was also how he became involved in the Osteopathy program at Victoria University. More recently his teaching and research focus has been on the evidence-informed practice space and clinical education. Pat has combined his teaching and research with various leadership roles within the College of Health and Biomedicine, including the Director of Teaching and Learning. This role focussed on accreditation, quality assurance and continuous improvement practices across all health and biomedicine courses during a period of transition at VU. Pat looks forward to bringing his skills to the AOAC team.

Andrew Frost, Board Director and Company Secretary

Andrew’s career includes Non-Executive Director roles across various sectors and senior management roles in Local Government. He currently is the principal of his own consulting firm.

His strengths lay in governance, risk, strategy and project management in addition to workplace health and safety and industrial relations.

Andrew is a lifelong learner with an MBA and qualifications in management and finance. His professional memberships include Graduate Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) and Fellow of the Institute of Professional Accountants. He completed the inaugural Tasmanian Leaders Program in 2007.

In addition to his Non-Executive Director role at AOAC, Andrew is a Non-Executive Director at Work and Training, a Committee Member with the Tasmanian Traineeships and Apprenticeships Committee and is a Tasmania Division Councillor with the AICD.

Andrew’s previous directorships include Chair, Treasurer and Chair: Audit and Risk Committee at the Migrant Resource Centre Northern Tasmania.

Professor Rhonda Wilson

Professor Rhonda Wilson is an internationally recognised mental health nursing scientist with a research focus on digital health interventions. She is Professor of Mental Health Nursing at RMIT University Australia and RMIT Europe in Spain, where she leads mental health nursing and an innovative digital mental health nursing laboratory.


As a Wiradjuri (First Nation) descendent, and member of CATSINaM (Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses and Midwives) she is a vigorous advocate and activist for the promotion of cultural safety and decolonisation in our education and health institutions. She has published extensively in international journals, books and conferences. She has a track record of leading national and international mental health mixed methods research programs, including using methods suited to priority populations, and First Nations peoples.


Professor Wilson has worked in a wide range of rural and regional clinical registered nursing roles throughout Northern Queensland, North-western Victoria, South-western Queensland and the New England region of NSW and academic roles in Australia, Denmark and New Zealand. During lockdown restrictions at the height of a Covid-19 outbreak in Walgett, NSW 2021, she partnered with Walgett Aboriginal Medical Service and her university colleagues, to go to Walgett to undertake an early humanitarian vaccination campaign to provide urgent protection for the Walgett community. Professor Wilson continues with a wide international and national network and program of research based flexibly on the traditional Darkinjung Country, Central Coast NSW, Australia. She is the current President of the peak body, Australian College of Mental Health Nurses.

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