Our People


Cate Cassarchis was appointed CEO of the RPH Research Foundation on 1 November 2021. With more than 30 years’ experience in the Government and not-for-profit sectors, both domestically and abroad, Cate has a strong background in governance and accountability, strategic planning and policy setting, program development, fundraising, community engagement, advocacy, negotiation, and public affairs.
Previously, Cate served as the CEO of the Perth Blood Institute which conducts medical research into blood disorders and facilitates access to clinical trials and treatment options for people affected by blood disorders. Prior to this, Cate was the State Archivist and Executive Director State Records where she was responsible for whole of State and local government recordkeeping (10 years). Cate has also served as a council member of the Institute of Public Administration WA and Director of the WA Museum Foundation.  

Our Board

All Board and Committee appointments are voluntary. The Foundation is most grateful to each appointee for generously donating their time and expertise towards advancing medical research within Royal Perth Hospital, the East Metropolitan Health Service (EMHS) and more widely.

Professor Lyn Beazley AO FAA FTSE FACE CIE (Aust) (Board Chair)

After graduating from Oxford and Edinburgh Universities, Professor Lyn Beazley built an internationally renowned research team of neuroscientists that focused on recovery from brain damage. Professor Beazley was honoured to be the Chief Scientist of Western Australia from 2006 to 2013. During this time, she advised the Western Australian Government on science, innovation and technology. Professor Beazley currently serves several boards, including the National Blood Authority. She recently served on the Terrestrial Research Network board. Professor Beazley was a Trustee of the Western Australian Museum from 1999-2006 and currently is Patron of the Friends of the Museum, along with many other organisations. Professor Beazley was awarded Officer of the Order of Australia in 2009. Professor Beazley was elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering later that year and Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science in 2019.  In 2011, she was inducted into the inaugural Western Australian Women’s Hall of Fame, followed by being elected a Fellow of the Australian College of Educators and a Companion of Engineers Australia. Professor Beazley has worked tirelessly to promote STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) to the community, especially to young people. In 2012, she was thrilled to become the second recipient of the Governor’s Award for Giving, in recognition of her enthusiastic philanthropy. Professor Beazley’s achievements saw her inducted into the Western Australian Science Hall of Fame and receive the WA Australian of the Year Award in 2015.

Mr John Palermo FCA AGIA (Deputy Board Chair & Treasurer)

Mr John Palermo is a Chartered Accountant with 25 years’ experience in public practice. His areas of expertise include corporate transaction execution, strategic business management and business structuring. In addition to his role as Deputy Chair and Treasurer of the RPH Research Foundation, John is Chair of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, and Director of West Australian Ballet. He is a former Executive Councillor of the National Trust and Board member of Lifeline.


Dr Lesley Bennett is the Executive Director of the Royal Perth Bentley Group, which includes Royal Perth Hospital and Bentley Health Service. Dr Bennett has worked within the Royal Perth Bentley Group since 2013 in roles including Service 1 Co-Director, Medical Co-Director Safety and Organisational Learning, and Director of Clinical Services. Prior to this, she held leadership roles in the United Kingdom, including Consultant Physician and Senior Lecturer at Oxford University Hospitals. Dr Bennett has a strong focus on leadership, strategic planning and innovation, and has been involved in a number of organisational and cultural change projects throughout her career.

Ms Amanda Cox FCA FGIA FCG (CGP)

Professor Daniel Fatovich MBBS FACEM PhD

Professor Daniel Fatovich is the Director of Research, East Metropolitan Health Service. He is also a senior emergency physician and clinical researcher at Royal Perth Hospital Emergency Department, one of the busiest Emergency Departments in Australasia, and has more than 30 years of experience in the design and conduct of clinical trials. Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Western Australia, Head of the Centre for Clinical Research in Emergency Medicine (CCREM) at Perkins and Adjunct Professor at Curtin University are some of the other impressive strings to his bow.

Mr David Jones BSc, ADPA (WAAPA), JD (Hons)

Mr David Jones is a barrister at Francis Burt Chambers and practises in commercial law, public law and criminal law. Mr Jones graduated in science from The University of Western Australia and classical performance from the Conservatorium of Music before completing a Juris Doctor, graduating with first class merit honours. He was articled to the State Solicitor of Western Australia and spent seven years providing advice and representation on complex and contentious commercial and public law matters before being called to the Bar. He is a nonexecutive director of MSWA and Lost & Found Opera, an advisor to WAAPA, a peer to the Australia Council, and an artist with WA Opera.

Dr Rebecca McCrackan BSc(Hons) PhD M(IP Law) FITPA

Dr Rebecca McCrackan has extensive experience in the life science and resource sectors and is presently a Principal IP Counsel for the global mining and metals group Rio Tinto. To give back to the community, Dr McCrackan works on various statutory and not-for-profit boards, particularly in the life sciences industry, leveraging her earlier experience as a biomedical researcher. Dr McCrackan holds a first-class honours degree in biotechnology, and a PhD in Immunology conducted at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute. Dr McCrackan’s academic pursuits further included a postdoctoral position at the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre. Dr McCrackan has a master’s degree in intellectual property law.

Professor Glennda Scully FCA GAICD

Professor Glennda Scully is the Director of Finance, Infrastructure and Digital Technology at Catholic Education Western Australia, and an Emeritus Professor at Curtin University. Glennda has over 30 years’ experience across a diverse range of sectors. She is a member of the Perth Archdiocese Financial Council and board member of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand.  She also held non-executive director roles with Curtin University, Mercycare and the Financial Toolbox. Glennda holds a PhD from the University of Western Australia and is a fellow of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand. 

Professor Grant Waterer MBBS PhD MBA FRACP FCCP (Nominee to Dr Lesley Bennett)

Dr Waterer is Professor of Medicine at the University of Western Australia, Adjunct Professor of Medicine at Northwestern University, Chicago and Curtin University, Perth and Adjunct Professor at Edith Cowan University. He is the Area Director of Medical Services for East Metropolitan Health Service, the Director of Medical Services for Royal Perth Bentley Hospital Group and has been in a senior executive role at RPGB for the past 9 years. He is a Board Member of the Lions Eye Institute. His main research interests are in pulmonary infections, especially pneumonia and non-tuberculous mycobacterial disease, as well as bronchiectasis and COPD. He has over 230 peer reviewed publications and more than 70 invited international presentations. He was the section editor for infections for the European Respiratory Journal from 2018-2021and will be an Associated Editor for the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine from 2022. He was the ATS chair of the recently published community-acquired pneumonia guidelines and a member of the 2017 HAP/VAP guideline panel.

Board Advisory

Emeritus Professor Lawrie Beilin AO MB.BS. Hons (Lond), MD (Lond), FRCP (London). MA (Oxon), FRACP, FCSANZ

Emeritus Professor Lawrie Beilin has been a Professor of Medicine with the School of Medicine & Pharmacology at the Royal Perth Hospital campus for The University of Western Australia and is the immediate past Chair of the RPH Research Foundation. In his semi-retirement, Professor Beilin continues to pursue his passion for medical research as an honorary senior research fellow at The University of Western Australia and the RPH Research Foundation. He has been the recipient of a number of International and National awards for his work. Most recently the World Hypertension League’s 2021 Peter Sleight Award for Excellence in Hypertension Research.

Strategic Research Advisor

Emeritus Professor George Yeoh

Our Committees

Scientific Advisory Committee
  • Dr Rebecca McCrackan (Co-chair)

  • Professor Daniel Fatovich (Co-chair)

  • Dr Tamika Heiden

  • Professor Margaret Jones

  • Professor Elaine Holmes

  • Professor Grant Waterer

  • Ms Anne Mackenzie

  • Mr Neil Kavanagh

  • Emeritus Professor George Yeoh

Marketing and PR Committee
  • Ms Cate Cassarchis (Chair/CEO)

  • Mr Ben Berthon-Jones

  • Miss Elodie Castagna

  • Miss Caitlin Swartz

  • Mrs Samantha Hambling

Finance and Investment Committee
  • Mr John Palermo (Chair)
  • Dr Frank Christiansen
  • Mr Tony Chong
  • Mr Todd Schafer
  • Ms Cate Cassarchis (CEO)
  • Ms Hena Park
Audit and Risk Committee
  • Mr David Jones (Chair)
  • Mr Sam Van Dongen SC
  • Mr Tutu Phong (Auditor, RSM)
  • Ms Cate Cassarchis (CEO)
  • Ms Hena Park

Our Patron

His Excellency the Honourable Chris Dawson AC APM Governor of Western Australia, is the Patron of the RPH Research Foundation. It’s our honour to work with Governor Dawson to create genuine community awareness about the amazing medical developments and discoveries that are taking shape within our great state.

Advancing WA’s world-class health research sector is one of the Governor’s priorities and the RPH Research Foundation is proud to be an active participant in the realisation of this noble goal.

His Excellency The Honourable Chris Dawson AC APM Governor of Western Australia


His Excellency The Honourable Chris Dawson AC APM Governor of Western Australia was sworn in as the 34th Governor of Western Australia on 15 July 2022.

The Dawson family have been part of the early colonial settlers over five generations of farming and law enforcement. The Governor's great-great-grandparents arrived in the then Swan River colony in Western Australia in 1830.

Christopher John Dawson AC APM was educated at Perth Modern School before joining the Western Australia Police Force in 1976, going on to provide 46 years of service in Australian law enforcement.

He served in country and metropolitan positions, criminal investigation, training and senior roles. The Queen’s Birthday Honours List in 2002 saw him awarded the Australian Police Medal for distinguished service.

After 10 years as Deputy Commissioner, he left WA for a national role in Canberra between 2014 to 2017 as Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Crime Commission, amalgamating several agencies into the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission. He also served as Director of the Australian Institute of Criminology during this period.

He was appointed Commissioner of the Western Australia Police Force in August 2017, serving until July 2022. During the period of the COVID-19 global pandemic, Commissioner Dawson coordinated the State of Emergency and the Vaccine program.

He is married to Darrilyn Dawson, Education Consultant, with two married children and five grandchildren.

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