New appointment: big shoes filled

RSL Care’s search for a new CEO to replace Ross Smith has ended with the appointment of an experienced health and aged care executive who was once the boss of Queensland’s jails.

Above: Stan Macionis, who takes over the reins of RSL Care in March.

The RSL Care board has appointed a new chief executive officer, Stan Macionis, the result of a nationwide search for a leader to replace the highly respected Ross Smith, who stepped down at the end of October.

Mr Macionis will take over the helm from interim CEO Peter Emery on Monday 5 March, a date that will mark a new era for the organisation, according to board chairman Robert Lippiatt.

Mr Lippiatt, who was elected as part of a reshuffle in November shortly after Mr Smith’s resignation, expressed the board’s confidence in the incoming chief executive’s ability to lead the organisation through the reforms currently underway in health, aged care and disability services.

“Many aged and community care providers, including RSL Care, will soon be impacted by a number of policy and funding changes in the areas of health, disability and aged care,” Mr Lippiatt said.

“Stan is a very accomplished executive with extensive experience in human services and a strong affinity in the health and care sectors.

“Under his leadership we look forward to working with industry, government and the defence community to take advantage of the opportunities presented by the changes to improve the way we do business – to improve the way we serve and support our mates in the defence community and the broader Australian community.”

In March, Mr Macionis will leave his current position as Uniting Care Queensland’s strategic projects facilitator to lead RSL Care.

He previously led Health Services Australia through its merger with Medibank Private as managing director and chief operating officer, before becoming CEO of Medibank Health Solutions, a newly formed division of Medibank.

Mr Macionis was also chief executive of Queensland Corrections in the late 1990s, and “drove significant cultural change to improve rehabilitation outcomes while at the same time taking Queensland to become the most cost-effective Australian correctional jurisdiction,” according to a biography provided by his new employer.


“Under Ross Smith’s leadership, RSL Care has grown to become one of the most recognised and respected aged and community care providers in Australia, known for tackling the big issues in aged care and making a significant contribution to the care of older members of the veteran and general community,” he said to AAA by email.

“I feel both humbled and privileged to be given the opportunity to continue RSL Care’s mission and growth. I also acknowledge that we are entering a new world in the aged care and not-for-profit sectors with a whole new set of challenges and opportunities.

“My early observation is that RSL Care has a very capable team of frontline staff known for their commitment to their residents and clients. I look forward to providing the direction and leadership required for the organisation to deliver quality, personalised services in the changing aged care landscape and to fulfil the Board’s vision for growth.”

Former CEO, Ross Smith, led RSL Care for close to 16 years and is the president of Aged Care Queensland, where he has sat on the board of directors since 1997. 

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