On this page

About the award

The Staff Member of the Year Award recognises NSW Health employees who have made an exceptional contribution through effective collaboration to the NSW Health system.

This award acknowledges an individual who:

  • as part of their role in NSW Health, demonstrates excellence of service to support staff, patients, carers or families
  • is a role model for promoting positive cultural change and inspiring other staff within NSW Health
  • uses new and innovative ways to collaborate with staff, patients, carers or families
  • supports effective teamwork to collaboratively improve patient care
  • applies strong corporate and clinical governance and CORE values in all health services.

Winner – Professor Josephine Chow

South Western Sydney Local Health District


Professor Chow has been crucial to the global impact of the renal program's knowledge generation in nursing leadership and practices. She is a Winston Churchill Fellow and the Chair of a number of local and international professional and influential Committees. Her leadership sets a positive example, promotes positive cultural change and inspires others. She is the founder and foundational Chair of The HOME Network, since 2009, an Australasian initiative that brings healthcare professionals and consumers together to promote home dialysis as a choice. She has considerable success in securing funding for significant international projects including TEACH-PD, PEACH, COVID-19.

In recognition of her innovative response and leadership to the COVID-19 pandemic, she was the Finalist of the 2022 Federal Health Minister's Award for Nursing Trailblazers. Professor Chow has received over 30 awards in research, leadership and innovation, such as NSW Health Innovation Award.

Professor Chow advocates and is also a member of consumer working groups. She has affiliations with universities in Australia and Stanford University in the United States.

She holds several foundational positions within NSW Health including:

  • Director of Strategy/Partnerships,
  • Co-Director for the Renal Clinical Trial Centre,
  • Chair of the South Western Sydney Nursing & Midwifery Alliance,
  • Deputy Director of Research, and
  • Lead of the Operational Team of the Emergency Operation Centre.

Finalist – Alison Taylor

Mid North Coast Local Health District


Alison Taylor is an inspiration in her role as clinical nurse educator (CNE). She has created and implemented several innovative projects to improve the care provided for patients with a mental illness. Ali shares her innovative ideas with other units in Coffs Harbour. She is passionate about working collaboratively to integrate patients and their families into the centre of their care.

Ali creates a positive culture to support staff wellbeing. She has developed a range of projects to ensure staff feel valued, respected, and looked after in their mental health.

Ali consistently exceeds her CNE position description as a leader in supporting staff to deliver high-quality patient care. Ali has a passion for mental health nursing and sharing her knowledge to improve the lives of patients living with a mental illness.

Ali motivates and inspires staff, not only in her own unit and hospital, but on a district and statewide level. She thinks innovatively on how care is delivered to mental health patients. Ali's infectious smile and positive attitude promotes change and enhances care for our mental health consumers in all areas of the hospital.

Finalist – Dr Bethan Richards

Sydney Local Health District


Dr Bethan Richards is a Staff Specialist Rheumatologist at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney Local Health District. She is also Australia's first Chief Medical Wellness Officer and founding Deputy Director of the Institute of Musculoskeletal Health, an innovative research partnership between SLHD and University of Sydney. Since starting in NSW Health in 2003, Bethan has championed innovation in staff- and patient-centered care.

During this time, she has:

  • developed internationally recognised mentorship, leadership and medical education programs;
  • led large units to deliver high quality, people-centred health care;
  • led Sydney Local Health District in the implementation of Activity Based Funding; and
  • established the Institute of Musculoskeletal Health to deliver cutting-edge research
  • established and implemented the award-winning Sydney Local Health District MDOK (My District OK) staff wellbeing program.

Bethan is well-respected as an international expert in the fields of rheumatology, leadership, and health care worker wellbeing. Her work has been recognised with the following awards:

  • Makers and Shapers Award (2023), Peter Bancroft Research Prize, University of Sydney (2020)
  • Excellence in e-health resources (STARS Back pain app), NPS Medicinewise (2018)
  • Australian Medical Association's Teacher of the Year Award (2016); and
  • Excellence in Teaching Awards, at Royal North Shore (2009), Westmead (2008) and Royal Prince Alfred (2021, 2022, 2023) Hospitals.

Dr Richards' dedication to NSW Health, her patients and colleagues, make her an invaluable asset to NSW Health and the Australian health sector.

Current as at: Tuesday 24 October 2023
Contact page owner: NSW Health