Strategy and transformation expert named headspace Board Chair

headspace, Australia’s National Youth Mental Health Foundation, has today announced the appointment of Mr Ben Shields as its new Board Chair.

Mr Shields brings to the headspace Board twenty years’ experience in corporate strategy, strategy execution and transformation.

His professional experience includes more than 10 years as Partner at consultancy firm Deloitte Australia and another five years as Managing Partner at Alchemy Growth, roles that have seen him work throughout Asia, the United States and the United Kingdom.

Mr Shields is a passionate advocate for the empowerment of young people and is determined to ensure all young Australians have access to the resources they need to reach their potential. Mr Shields is also a Board member of Police Citizens Youth Clubs NSW.

“I am honoured to begin serving alongside a Board of distinguished mental health advocates, and to join them in partnering with Australian communities and governments to improve the mental health and wellbeing of young people.” Mr Shields said.

“headspace has proven itself a vital and trusted service for communities all around Australia. I look forward to overseeing more growth across all headspace services to support the increasing needs of young people who have been disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Mr Shields has a Master of Business Administration from the University of Western Australia and is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Mr Shields thanked his predecessor, Ms Lisa Paul AO PSM, who has been Chair since 2018.

“Lisa has made an invaluable contribution to headspace and to the youth mental health sector over the past three years. I wish her the very best for the future,” Mr Shields said.

Ms Paul also congratulated Mr Shields on his appointment as Chair, and said she was proud of how headspace had grown over her term as Chair.

“The headspace I depart is a dynamic, forward-looking organisation with a highly engaged culture shaped by the experiences and advice from young people across all levels of headspace.”

“My time at headspace has been nothing short of inspiring. The strength of partnerships across the headspace centre network, schools, employers, governments, academics, digital agencies and national organisations has enriched our work in supporting young people experiencing a tough time.

“I particularly call out the tremendous vision and leadership of our CEO Jason Trethowan and his outstanding team. I look forward to a continuing connection with headspace.

“I know Ben’s years of experience will be a valuable asset to headspace as it continues its vital and life-changing work with young Australians.”