Above: Dr Ken Michael meets and greets aged care residents in his new role as ACSWA Ambassador for Ageing
The state’s peak body for not-for-profit aged and home care organisations has recruited the former government in the hope that his appointment will increase the awareness of the major issues affecting WA’s ageing population and at a time when debate over recent ACFI cuts is rife.
Dr Michael’s diverse CV includes previous positions as Chancellor of the University of Western Australia and Chairman of the East Perth Redevelopment Authority and Commissioner of Main Roads WA.
He has also been awarded as Companion in the Order of Australia; Western Australian Citizen of the Year; and received Centenary of Federation medal for service to the public, engineering, and the Greek community.
ACSWA CEO, Stephen Kobelke, said Dr Michael was greatly respected for his tireless contribution to the WA community.
“As ACSWA Ambassador for Ageing, Dr Michael will play a valued role supporting our vision to enhance community awareness about aged and community care services, encouraging respect for the contributions made by older Australians to our nation, celebrating the aged care workforce and promoting healthy, active ageing,” Mr Kobelke said.
Dr Michael’s first official visit in his capacity as ambassador took place this Monday at Hellenic Aged Care in Dianella, where he met members of the aged care organisation and was briefed on the current issues affecting aged and community care in the state.
“I commend ACSWA and its members for their commitment and dedication; I’m delighted to be a part of it and to make a contribution that adds to the great work underway,” Dr Michael said.
“I believe in a healthy active lifestyle and I’m pleased to be asked to be ACSWA’s Ambassador for Ageing.”
Alzheimer’s Australia WA CEO to retire
Officially announced by the organisation’s chairman, Craig Masarei, earlier this week, the news also means that the Alzheimer’s Australia WA Board is on the hunt for a new CEO to ensure a seamless transition from Mr Schaper’s departure through to the arrival of his successor.
Mr Schaper has held the top position for the past 15 years and was notably instrumental to the sustainability and growth of the organisation and raising the awareness of dementia throughout the WA community.
“On behalf of everyone at Alzheimer’s Australia WA, I would like to express our gratitude to Frank for his leadership in guiding the organisation through both challenging times and exciting moments,” Mr Masarei said.
“Frank’s vision in tackling the dementia epidemic in WA is unparalleled and many people have benefited from his drive, professionalism and insight into making WA a better place for people living with dementia.”
During his time, Mr Schaper led the transformation of the organisation from a service provider to an organisation that has positioned itself as a service model developer, researcher and capacity builder in the health and aged care industry.
Under Mr Schaper’s leadership, Alzheimer’s Australia WA has established a number of strong local and international partnerships and has embarked on a bold capital works program that will help shape the future of dementia care in WA for generations to come.
Mr Schaper also formed close alliances with other Alzheimer’s support organisations in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.
“Frank has been a champion and a strong advocate for people living with dementia and was influential in the development of WA’s Dementia Action Plan,” Mr Masarei said.
“We congratulate him on his success and wish him well in his retirement.”
“…Frank said it has been a great privilege to have worked with exceptional people who are passionate about the lives of people with dementia, their families and carers.
“I am proud to have been a part of the organisation’s growth and its evolution into a leader in dementia care and services.
“I am confident that the organisation is well positioned for its next phase of growth as it takes on the dementia epidemic that we are facing.”