ACORN staff

Rebecca EastRebecca East CEO

A respected national perioperative leader, Rebecca East assumed her appointment as ACORN’s Chief Executive Officer in late 2019. Having served 6 consecutive years as an  ACORN board member, initially as Victorian Representative, then Victorian Director and finally as President Rebecca brings unique perspectives and deep knowledge of the Australian perioperative community. ACORN awarded Rebecca ACORN Fellowship in 2018 concurrent with her completion of a Master of Nursing Practice (Perioperative) and Master of Nursing Practice (Nurse Practitioner) from Deakin University. Rebecca’s clinical practice is diverse. For the past 9 years Rebecca has worked in private practice, She gained endorsement as a nurse practitioner in 2014 and is now a proud director of her own private orthopaedic and sports injury practice in Central Victoria. Rebecca is responsible for overall management of the team’s orthopaedic and sports injury patients, and continues to practice at the coal face assuming a weekly surgical assisting role with her business partner who is an orthopaedic surgeon. Bec well understands, supports and represents the broader Australian perioperative nursing community. ACORN Board, members and staff are grateful for Bec’s leadership and look future to ACORN’s bright future under her strategic direction.

Edwina Blannin-Ferguson 2021Edwina Blannin-Ferguson

Edwina has held a number of education and management positions within the perioperative environment in both New South Wales and Victoria. Her passion for enhancing and progressing the role of the perioperative nurse in Australia is ongoing and her background in both clinical education and tertiary education provide a robust foundation for delivering content in a variety of learning environments.

One of Edwina's passions is continuing professional development to ensure best-practice underpinned by up-to-date evidence for the best possible patient outcomes. She has completed a Masters in Nursing, a Diploma of Leadership and Management and a range of clinically relevant qualifications. She is also passionate about multi-disciplinary education opportunities, the use of simulation to improve learning experiences and the incorporation of technology-based learning to improve accessibility of content to perioperative nurses across Australia.

E.TanEleanor Tan

Eleanor Tan was first engaged in September 2015 to manage production of the journal. In July 2016 she was employed as ACORN's Publications Officer to manage the production of ACORN's publications and edit the website and other communications.

With more than twenty years' experience in the education and health sectors and ten years' editing and publishing experience, Eleanor's expertise and attention to detail have ensured ACORN publications reflect the College's professional standing within the community.

Lesley Woods 2019Lesley Woods

Lesley Woods joined ACORN as Administration and Accounts Officer in June 2019 providing administrative and account support to its members, stakeholders and staff.

With over 30 years' experience in senior roles of business administration in the not for profit medical education sector I bring proven skills and sound knowledge in leadership, change management, budgets and event management, and innovation of processes resulting in clients needs met.

ACORN has grown to be a well-recognised peak body for its members and the role out of the 'Road Map Project' will enable the ACORN team to be a part of its future through operational change, innovation and commercial growth. To be part of ACORN's future through the Roadmap and opportunities for involvement the years ahead look to be very rewarding for all involved.

Bron Weeks PhotoBronwyn Weeks 

Bronwyn joined ACORN as Member Services Officer in February 2022 providing support to ACORN members, stakeholders and staff. Bronwyn,  is an Administrative juggler! with over 25 years experience working in a number of organisations within Australia and the UK, including Maggie Beer Foundation, Hilton UK and the Department of Health.    Bronwyn is knowledgeable in a wide range of applications and platforms.  With a positive attitude and helpful nature, Bronwyn is excited to be joining the ACORN team.  In her free time, Bronwyn likes to spend time with her two sons and enjoys the area of McLaren vale where she lives and has her own dehydrated fruit label.

IMG_3783Michelle Hibberson

Michelle has worked with in rural theatres for a majority of her career and this has given her the opportunity to work in all areas of perioperative nursing from preadmission to DOSA, anaesthetics, scrub/scout, PACU and education, although anaesthetic nursing is considered Michelle’s favourite field.  With addition, Michelle has also taken on many tertiary teaching roles with various universities across Australia.

Completing a master’s in nursing and a graduate diploma specialising in anaesthetic, recovery, and recently completing an Honours degree, conducting research into multidisciplinary simulation training for Australian perioperative teams.

Michelle has always been passionate about improving perioperative practice and see standards as an essential bridge between the research and the day-to-day practice at the ‘coal face’.  

Bec Pym 2022Bec Pym

Bec is an experienced project manager specialising in stakeholder engagement. She has held a number of diverse roles in education, events, retail and community. She has a partnership philosophy and is driven to identify and connect stakeholders to develop and enhance projects that achieve mutually beneficial outcomes. 

Bec is passionate about education, health and wellbeing, social justice and contributing positively to the wider community.

To see the ACORN Organisation chart, an overview of ACORN's governance, click here.