Who We Are
Under Mary Aikenhead Ministries, the many health (including aged care and research institutes), education and some social service ministries that were established and developed by the Sisters of Charity in Australia, following their arrival from Ireland in 1838, are governed by a group of Trustees, consisting of members of the Congregation and lay colleagues.
The Trustees are the Canon Law and Civil Stewards of the Ministries. As such, the Ministries report to, and are accountable to the Trustees.
The Trustees will seek to ensure that the heritage, tradition and charism of the Sisters are taken purposefully into the future.
For a statement about the role of the Trustees, click here.
Dr Tessa Ho GAICD MBBS MD – Chair
Tessa is an ex-student of St Vincent’s College in Sydney, New South Wales, a medical graduate of the University of Sydney and a Master of Health Planning graduate of the University of New South Wales (UNSW). She has a UNSW Doctor of Medicine in Health Services Management, with a focus on health workforce training and support, especially in relation to health care provision for those disadvantaged by rurality, gender and ethnicity. Her research in health economics involved the development of simulation models for casemix funding of NSW public hospitals.
Tessa has a longstanding commitment to medical education and professional development, manifest in her work as a medical educator and medical administrator in workforce planning. She has had extensive involvement in university medical education, as Associate Dean and Head of the Medical Program at the University of Sydney, and as a member of Australian Medical Council Assessment Teams for accreditation of Australian medical schools, the Management Committee of the NSW Institute of Medical Education and Training, Deputy Chair of the Education and Resource Development Committee of the NSW Postgraduate Medical Council and the NSW State Committee of the Royal Australasian College of Medical Administrators.
In 2016, the Governor-General appointed Tessa to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal. In 2017, Tessa was appointed by the Queensland Health Minister to the Queensland Board of the Medical Board of Australia.
Mr David Alcock – Deputy Chair
David attended St Peter’s Primary School, East Bentleigh before completing his secondary education at St Kevin’s College, Toorak in Victoria. He graduated with a Bachelor of Business in 1987 and in 2004 completed a Graduate Diploma in Company Secretarial Practice. David is a member of both CPA Australia and the Governance Institute of Australia.
David has held leadership roles within a variety of organisations. Apart from a brief two-year stint in the petroleum industry, for the most part, David’s working life has been either directly or indirectly in the service of Catholic education.
His working career commenced in 1977 in the retail book trade with Campion Books Pty Ltd and later included a number of years as Managing Director of Sandhurst Computers Pty Ltd, an IT company supplying specialised software to Catholic schools and parishes across four States. In mid-1998, seeking a more direct involvement in the education sector, he was pleased to accept the position of Business Manager at Loyola College, Watsonia. In 2002 he took up a similar position, serving the community of Catholic Ladies’ College in Eltham until February 2015.
His honorary roles currently include serving on the Finance Committee of Marist Schools Australia. David has experience of the many challenges of a team member, associated with co-ordinating the establishment of two new schools in the growth corridor on Melbourne’s northern edge. He has also served as a Director in a not-for-profit, community-based, aged care organisation focused on serving people living in the municipality where David and his wife Rita reside. Together they have four adult children and remain long-time active members of the Passionist Family Group movement within their local Parish of St. Peter and Paul in East Doncaster.
Sr Linda Ferrington rsc
Linda Ferrington rsc was educated by the Sisters of Charity at St Mary’s Hurstville, and St Vincent’s College Potts Point. Linda hold’s post graduate qualifications in Religious Education, Educational Administration, Pastoral Leadership and Theology.
Previously Linda has been a primary school principal, a member of the Congregational Council, a founding Trustee of Mary Aikenhead Ministries, and Director of Initial Formation. As Director of the Parramatta Pastoral Institute, she exercised responsibility for Parish Leadership Formation, Adult Faith Formation, and as a member of the Ongoing Clergy Formation Committee.
Linda has excised her governance responsibilities through boards in education, health, Diocesan Boards and Advisory Councils in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Tasmania.
Mr Gary Humphrys
Gary was appointed to the Trustees of Mary Aikenhead Ministries on 1 July 2017. Gary has almost 40 years’ experience in senior executive roles covering a number of disciplines including finance and accounting, treasury, taxation, IT, procurement and audit in the energy and mining industries in both the public and private sector. Gary has held various directorships in the health, mining, water and energy sectors. He was previously a Director of St Vincent’s Health Australia Limited and is currently a Director of HESTA Superannuation. Gary also has recently been appointed as Chair of the Audit & Risk Committee of Brisbane’s South Bank Corporation.
Ms Janet Freeman
Janet Freeman was educated at St Mary’s School, Rydalmere, and Bethlehem College, Ashfield. She graduated with a BA Dip Ed from Macquarie University in 1976, was awarded her Masters in Education in 1986 and a Graduate Diploma of Religious Education in 1996. Janet has received an award for leadership from the Australia Council for Educational Leaders and the Principal’s Award for Excellence from the NSW Parents’ Council.
Janet has worked in Catholic Education for over 40 years, 25 of which were as Principal of Catholic schools; first, at Mercy College at Chatswood and then at Loreto, Kirrilbilli for 15 years. Amongst other appointments in her career, she has been on The National Executive of both The Association of Catholic School Principals and The Alliance of Girls Schools Australia, State Secretary and Treasurer for the ACT/NSW Branch of the Association of Heads of Independent Schools, a member of the Parramatta Diocesan Schools’ Council and the Broken Bay Diocesan Schools’ Board and for ten years was a member of the NSW Catholic Education Commission Education Policy Committee. Presently she is a member of the Loreto College Ballarat School Board, the fundraising committee for the John Berne School and the Marist Regional Education Council (NSW). Janet consults in education, particularly being involved in the selection and performance review of executive staff for independent and system schools.
In 2017 Janet was a member of the Mary Aikenhead Australia Education Advisory Committee, a position she relinquished on appointment as a Trustee.
Janet is continuing her work in Catholic education part-time with Sydney Catholic Schools, coordinating a mentor program which links disadvantaged students in systemic schools with successful business people.