Board & governance

Board members

The Australian College of Mental Health Nurses Board comprises of highly-skilled, elected members with skills in mental health nursing, advocacy, health and higher education, governance, strategic planning and quality improvement.

John Hurley

Interim President

John Hurley is Professor of Mental Health at Southern Cross University and works clinically at Headspace Coffs Harbour as a Credentialed Mental Health Nurse. He has accumulated over 35 years’ experience as a mental health practitioner through developing and leading psychiatric crisis and home treatment services in both Australia and the United Kingdom.

Monica Taylor


Monica Taylor has been a mental health nurse for 30 years and was one of the first community-based MHNs in the Western Australian rural sector. Monica has expertise in emergency psychiatry and undertook state projects where she led the development of the WA framework for clinical supervision in public mental health services and was project lead for national forensic benchmarking. Monica has held leadership roles including clinical, project management, clinical redesign, nursing, and hospital administration.

Mike Hazelton


Mike Hazelton RN CMHN BA MA PhD FACMHN holds the positions of Conjoint Professor at the University of Newcastle and Adjunct Professor at Charles Sturt University. Mike retired as Professor Of Mental Health Nursing at the University Of Newcastle in February 2020, a position he held since 2001. Dr Hazelton has had extensive experience leading schools of nursing and midwifery at the University Of Newcastle, Curtin University, the University Of Tasmania.

Donna Hansen Vella


Donna Vella is a passionate mental health nurse focused on improving people’s access to adequately funded mental health nursing services. She commenced her career as a direct entry psychiatric nurse in 1991 and has subsequently worked in a range of clinical and leadership roles across public and private mental health services within Victoria. Her clinical work spans perinatal psychiatry, child and youth mental health, and more recently adult acute mental health services.

Vicki Green


Vicki Green received her certificate in psychiatric nursing in 1993 and master of healthcare leadership in  2018. She is devoted to patient and family-centered care that is trauma-informed and enables this work through leadership roles across a range of clinical areas.

Vicki is the Director of Nursing, DDHHS and most recently the Chair for the South Queensland Branch of the College.

Francis Acquah


Francis Acquah is a Credentialed Mental Health Nurse and a Fellow of the Australian College of Mental Health Nurses. Francis was awarded Doctor of Science (D.Sc) Honoris Causa by the Commonwealth University in December 2017. He is the Clinical Director of Positive Wellness Recovery Centre which provides mental health support, counselling, psychosocial rehabilitation and behaviour support planning. Francis is currently a scholar with the International Council of Nurses and the Global Nursing Leadership Institute (GNLI) program, Geneva.

Mick Blair


Since his recent retirement, following a 43-year career in health, Mick Blair has maintained an ongoing interest in the future of specialist mental health nursing. He has worked in a number of Australian states, all required professional leadership and stewardship to support the delivery of safe holistic patient care. As a Board member and Chair of the Council of Branches, he wants to help realise the potential of mental health nursing to address and ensure a future for our College.

Richard Lakeman


Associate Professor Richard Lakeman is a Credentialed Mental Health Nurse and fellow of the ACMHN. He has 30+ years of experience working in clinical practice, largely with people with complex needs in assertive outreach, acute care and in private practice as a psychotherapist. He has been a vocal advocate for recognition of the psychotherapeutic potential of MHNs. He coordinates the Southern Cross University Masters of Mental Health Nursing Programmes.

Annual General Meeting documents - 2021

Strategic Plan 2021-2026

Read more about the College's mission, vision, and values for the coming five years, and find out about our priorities to drive membership and improve recognition of mental health nurses and their unique skill set.

President's Report

In the 2021 President's Report, ACMHN President Mike Hazelton disscuses a year of change at the College, and goes over the responses to the recent members' survey identifying the organisation's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.

CEO's Report

CEO Stephen Jackson unpacks how the COVID-19 pandemic has shaped the College over the last year, gives an update on staff in the National Office, and highlights some of the achievements of and challenges facing the ACMHN.

Governance Plan

Find out more about the ACMHN's governance structure and how it aligns with the Strategic Plan.

Finance Report

Read the latest update on the College's finances.

AGM 2020 Minutes, President's Report, and CEO's Report

Catch up on the minutes from last year's AGM, and read the President's and CEO's reports. 

Governance resources


The constitution sets out the ACMHN's purpose for which the College has been established, details its powers, and outlines its organisational structure. 

Governance charter

The Governance charter ensures the strategic guidance of the ACMHN, defining the respective roles, responsibilities and authorities of the Board and the Chief Executive Officer. It guides the effective monitoring of management by the board, and the board’s accountability to members. 


By-laws enable the governing body of the organisation, the Board of Directors (or committees or delegations established by the Board) to determine how the ACMHN will operate for its proper advancement, management, and administration.