Avant Foundation Board Members

We have established strong governance for the Foundation, led by an experienced, diverse, skills-based Board and supported by a management team with experience in managing grant-making programs.
Dr Penny Browne

Dr Penny Browne is the Chief Medical Officer at Avant, advising the Senior Management Team on all clinical matters, and leading the team that promotes quality, safety and professionalism in medical practice through advocacy, education and research.  Penny is a general practitioner, and has worked extensively in General Practice education. She is currently a Senior Staff Specialist in General Practice at Hornsby Hospital, NSW.

Dr Matthew Doane

Dr Matthew Doane is a dual boarded and internationally trained Anaesthetist who is a member of both Diplomate of the American Board of Anesthesiology and Fellow of ANZCA. He is a Staff Specialist in the Department of Anaesthesia at the Royal North Shore Hospital and a Conjoint Senior Lecturer at the University of Sydney Medical School. Dr Doane has a strong interest in Clinical Research and Education.

Adam Golabek

Mr Adam Golabek is the Head of Strategy for Medical Indemnity at Avant. Adam has extensive experience in developing and managing grant programs, being responsible for all of Avant’s grants and scholarships programs since 2013. Adam was previously the Head of Partnerships at Avant, where he was responsible for Avant’s relationships with Medical Colleges and Specialty Societies. Adam has worked in the insurance industry for over 15 years in a variety of management roles. He holds a Master of Business Administration, a Master of Science and Technology in Risk Management and a Bachelor of Physiotherapy.

Emeritus Professor Kim Oates AM

Kim Oates is a paediatrician with long-standing clinical and research interests in child development, child behaviour, child protection and advocacy. He was the Foundation Douglas Burrows Professor of Paediatrics and Child Health, at the University of Sydney and was Chief Executive of the Children’s Hospital at Westmead. He has received a range of national and international awards and named lectureships, has written 15 books and over 300 published articles. An Emeritus Professor at the University of Sydney, he has co-led course for future health leaders in Vietnam. He established the Australian Academy for Emerging Leaders in Patient Safety where young clinicians meet with national and international experts to share ideas about improving the quality of patient care. In 2018 he was elected as one of 30 Founding Members of International Academy of Quality and Safety.

Associate Professor Grant Phelps

Associate Professor Phelps worked for over 20 years as a Gastroenterologist and Physician in regional Victoria. He trained in quality improvement at Intermountain Healthcare in the US and has held major management and leadership roles at organisational and jurisdictional level in a number of states. Grant has had national policy roles in safety and quality and has been a Director of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians and was President of the Adult Division of the College from 2016-2018. He is President and Chair of Hepatitis Australia and a Director of Rural Workforce Agency Victoria. He is an academic with an interest in Clinical Leadership with Deakin Uni and works as an independent consultant providing advice to hospitals and organisations on clinical leadership and safety and quality.

Dr Beverley Rowbotham

Associate Professor Beverley Rowbotham is the Chairman of the Avant Mutual Group. She is a Director of AMGL, AGHL, AIL and DHF. She is a haematologist, with a long-standing interest in quality and safety and chairs the National Pathology Accreditation Advisory Committee. She chaired AMA Federal Council for five years, and is a past President of the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia and is a member of the MBS Review Taskforce and other government committees. Dr Rowbotham is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. She is also a Director of RCPA Quality Assurance Programs Pty Limited and AEIOU Foundation for children with autism.

Ms Julie Webster

Ms Julie Webster is the CEO, Financial Services at Avant, leading the Financial Services division that includes Life Insurance and Financial Advice and Lending via investment in a third party. Prior to 2019 she was accountable for the growth of membership and products, our corporate, college and association partnerships, membership communication, member committees, publications and digital assets. Julie was instrumental in the establishment of Avant’s Doctors in Training Scholarship program. Julie has extensive corporate experience on developing strategies and in leading teams focused on organisational growth, innovation, the customer experience and stakeholder engagement.