Meet the NSPO Team

Thanks for your interest in our team. We are honoured to be a small part of a large suicide prevention sector with thousands of colleagues all working to offer hope and save lives.

Please find below a little bit about each of us and where our passion for this work lies. If you'd like to get in touch with any of us, please email: nspo@mentalhealthcommission.gov.au

We look forward to working with you.

Dr Michael Gardner

Head of the National Suicide Prevention Office

Michael Gardner is the Head of the National Suicide Prevention Office, a specialist unit created to assist governments implement a more comprehensive and coordinated national approach to suicide prevention. He is committed to driving reform and is passionate about ensuring that our approach to suicide prevention is focussed on protecting social wellbeing, addressing drivers of distress, and delivering integrated, practical supports that recognise and respond to every individual’s particular history and circumstances. Michael’s work draws on his diverse career in research, community service provision, government and public service, and is informed by his own extensive lived experience. He served as the Australian Government’s Senior Adviser for Mental Health and Suicide Prevention between 2018 and 2022, guiding responses to the Productivity Commission Inquiry into Mental Health, the 2020 bushfires, and the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

Policy

Michael Cook

Director of Service System Policy

Michael leads the Service System Policy team, which develops advice and solutions to enhance service systems and the diverse workforces that they depend upon. Michael has worked in dedicated suicide prevention roles for 7 years, including as implementation lead at Black Dog Institute for the LifeSpan integrated framework for suicide prevention, and Towards Zero Suicides lead for Sydney Local Health District. He also draws on experience as a psychologist working in correctional and alcohol and other drug settings, as well as private sector project management and systems design. Michael is passionate about using systems and policy levers to dramatically shift approaches to suicide prevention in Australia, aiming to improve our ability to better combat the diverse drivers of distress through policy and service response mechanisms that prevent people from entering suicidal crisis.

Tegan Cotterill

Assistant Director Service Systems Policy

As part of the Service Systems Policy Team, Tegan contributes to developing guidance to enhance service systems and enable workforces to respond compassionately to people in distress. Prior to joining the NSPO Tegan worked for the National Mental Health Commission, on the NSW Health Towards Zero Suicides initiatives and as a coordinator for the LifeSpan Newcastle research trial. Tegan is an experienced social worker with subject matter expertise in suicide prevention developed through working in senior clinical, project and policy roles on local, state, and national initiatives. Tegan is passionate about suicide prevention and working collaboratively with a range of stakeholders including people with a lived experience of suicide to influence government priorities to achieve suicide prevention reform with an emphasis on improving outcomes for populations that are disproportionately impacted by suicide.

James Burchmore CSM

Assistant Director Governance and Social Policy team

James Burchmore CSM is an Assistant Director in the policy team focusing on the development of the National Suicide Prevention Outcomes Framework and the National Suicide and Self-harm Monitoring System. His goal is to see a collaborative approach towards shared suicide data across governments to provide evidence for outcome reporting, evaluation, research and improved policy and service responses. Prior to this James has worked in suicide prevention in the Australian Defence Force, Department of Defence, and the National Mental Health Commission. He was also seconded to the National Suicide Prevention Taskforce that delivered the National Suicide Prevention Advisor’s Final Advice.

Clare Barrett

Assistant Director Governance and Social Policy team

Clare joined the Governance and Social Policy team in the National Suicide Prevention Office in October 2023. Prior to joining the NSPO, Clare worked across a range of Commonwealth government portfolios including women’s safety, Indigenous affairs, housing and homelessness, innovation policy and digital economy. Clare has qualifications in law and social inquiry, and is focusing on the development of Australia’s first National Suicide Prevention Strategy and Outcomes Framework.

Graham Ramsay 

Assistant Director, Policy

Graham joined the policy team in the National Suicide Prevention Office in January 2024, his main work is in the development of the National Suicide Prevention Strategy and associated Outcomes Framework. Prior to joining the NSPO, Graham worked in disability support, child protection, clinical mental health, and health and social policy roles, he has a particular interest in LGBTQIA+ mental health and suicide prevention. Graham is a Social Worker with further qualifications in mental health practice, suicidology, and public health.

 

Partnerships and Engagement

Ina Mullin

Director, Partnerships and Engagement

Ina leads the relationship development and communication functions of the Office. She is committed to ensuring the voice of lived experience is central to the development of recommendations for reform. Ina moved to the Office after serving as Director, Communication and Engagement at the National Mental Health Commission. Her career and voluntary work has been grounded in the not-for-profit sector working in a number of services that support the mental health and wellbeing of people who are impacted by a broad range of social determinants. Most recently, she served as National Manager Communications and Public Affairs at Lifeline Australia. Ina is the Deputy Chair of the Board of GROW Australia, a national service providing intentional peer support for people living with mental health challenges.

Rosanna Du Pont

Senior Partnerships and Engagement Officer

Rosanna supports the Director of Engagement & Partnerships team, Rosanna works on building stakeholder relationships, as well as establishing, coordinating, and improving business processes for the office. Rosanna’s professional experience draws on her diverse career that spans the private and higher education sector where she worked across philanthropy, international student recruitment, and researcher development. 

Passionate about suicide prevention and improving equality in Australia, Rosanna is thrilled to be a part of such a dynamic and motivated team. 

Crystal Paniccia

Senior Partnerships and Engagement Officer 

Crystal joined as Acting Senior Partnerships and Engagement Officer, she has previously worked in a diversity of purpose-driven stakeholder engagement and community partnership roles and contexts across the government, corporate and not-for-profit sectors. Areas include child safety, ecological sustainability, and First Nations post-determination Native Title. Crystal also brings significant experience in suicide prevention reform working for a dedicated lived experience organisation, leading the delivery of several large-scale consultation and co-design processes designed to centre lived experience insights and expertise. Crystal is passionate about supporting cross-sector collaborative approaches to improving systemic responses to suicide.

 

To get in touch with the National Suicide Prevention Office team, please email: nspo@nspo.gov.au

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