The Royal Children's Hospital

RCH Board

  • Chairman: Hon Rob Knowles AO

    Hon Rob Knowles AO was Victorian Minister for Health from 1996 until 1999 and MLC for Ballarat from 1976-1999. He has also served as Chairman of Food Standards Australia and New Zealand; as a member of the National Health & Hospital Reform Commission; is a former Aged Care Complaints Commissioner and former Commissioner with the National Mental Health Commission. In addition to serving on the Boards of the RCH Foundation and the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, Rob is currently a Director of the following: BeyondBlue Ltd; Drinkwise Australia Ltd; Global Health Ltd; Great Ocean Road Health, IPG Ltd and the Silverchain Group of Companies.

    Hon Rob Knowles AO

    Rowena Coutts

    Rowena currently consults to higher education organisations providing governance, legal, audit and policy advice and she is a partner in the family primary production business. 

    She is the immediate past Chair and Director of Ballarat Health Services and former Chair of the Grampians Regional Board Network.   

    As former Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor, University of Ballarat/Federation University Australia she had responsibility for Corporate Services including Finance, Legal, Governance, HR, Technology Park, Commercial, International Education and PR. She is also a former Chair and member of Board of Directors, Ballarat Clarendon College. Rowena commenced her career as a lawyer, and holds an LLB and BJuris from Monash University and a Doctor FedUni (Hon).

    Rowena Coutts


    Dr Christine Cunningham

    Dr Christine Cunningham is an experienced consultant who provides a wide range of research and evaluation services. For more than twenty years, she has been conducting research, providing insights and strategy advice and undertaking comprehensive evaluations of services, programs and projects within the health, government and private sectors. She commenced her career as a clinician, moving into policy and program development and redesign roles within the Department of Health and regional hospitals. Chris has also enjoyed sessional lecturing in statistics and is a member of the Swinburne University Postgraduate Applied Statistics Advisory Committee. She is an experienced Non-Executive Director and Chairman with more than 15 years service on health and education boards, including nine years on the Board of Northeast Health Wangaratta, five of which, as Chairman. Christine is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors with a PhD from the University of Melbourne and a Master’s Degree in Science (Applied Statistics). 

    Dr Christine Cunningham 


    Petrina Dorrington

    Petrina Dorrington is an experienced executive in the not-for-profit sector. She was the Executive Director of Kids Under Cover from 1997 to 2007 and a Director from 2007 to 2013. Petrina is a Director of the Consumer Policy Research Centre and has previously served on other boards including the Spectrum Migrant Resource Centre and Homes for Homes. She was awarded a study scholarship to Stanford University's Executive Program for Non Profit Leaders in 2006 and graduated as a fellow of the Williamson Community Leadership Program in 2007. Petrina currently provides project services to not-for-profits and private companies. She also volunteers for the Anglicare Friends Program.  

    Petrina Dorrington

    Sammy Kumar

    Mr Kumar is the Managing Partner for Firm Strategy at PwC. He also leads the firm's ASENZ (Australia, South East Asia, New Zealand) consulting business. He has over 26 years' experience across strategy, digital, financial effectiveness and operations. Mr Kumar served on the Board of the RCH from July 2012 to July 2015. He has been a Director of the RCH Foundation since 19 October 2015 and Chair of the RCH Foundation's Audit Committee since 15 June 2016.

    Sammy Kumar


    Mr David Lau

    Mr David Lau is the General Manager of Institutional Healthcare at EBOS Group. He has a background as a clinician, healthcare executive, telecommunications executive and strategy consultant, with particular expertise in the areas of digital health, health industry development and commercialisation, and health practitioner regulation. Amongst various roles, he has been Industry Lead for Health at Optus, an Executive Director at the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, Director of Pharmacy at Eastern Health, President of the Pharmacy Board of Victoria, Chair of the Victorian Pharmacy Authority, and a board member of North Yarra Community Health 

    Mr David Lau


    Mr David Mandel

    Mr David Mandel has a Bachelor of Science (Chemistry) from the University of Sussex England. He commenced his career as a marketing graduate with Unilever UK and held a number of senior management roles with Smorgon Consolidated Industries, Visy and Riverwood International Corp in both the USA and Australia, where he was Managing Director for three years from 1995 to 1997.   Riverwood in Australia was a 600 employee, five plant folding carton businesses owned by the listed US multinational corporation. Mr Mandel is currently a non-executive director of a number of organisations in the commercial medical / technology space; and national sport and not for profit sectors.

      Mr David Mandel


    Dr Linden Smibert

    MBBS FRACGP FAICD

    Dr Linden Smibert is a general practitioner with many years of both clinical and governance experience having chaired Networking Health Victoria and the Inner East Melbourne Medicare Local. For many years she owned and operated her own general practice. In these diverse but complementary roles she was instrumental in developing Primary Healthcare Networks with the Federal Department of Health from existing Medicare Locals. She has wide experience in clinical governance and risk management in the health sector. She is well aware of the broad policy and funding context of public healthcare and the need to address community needs.  Amongst other Boards, she has also served on the Board of Vincentcare Victoria which has recently built and now opened the new Ozanam House for homeless people.

    Dr Linden Smibert