Richard Sullivan is pleased to announce the appointment of Laura Aileone as National Chief Midwife within the Clinical Leadership Directorate. We look forward to welcoming Laura to the team from 25 July.

As Tāngata o Te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa, Ngāti Hāmoa, Laura is passionate about addressing the inequities in our healthcare system, and ensuring both clinical and whānau voices are at the heart of our service design and delivery. Laura is focused on the system capability we need to support our midwives throughout the motu providing care for women, pregnant people, pēpi, and whānau. She is excited about supporting inclusive, collaborative ways of working, empowering our kaimahi throughout our system, and a persistent focus on whānau voice and community need. 

Laura has spent over 20 years in healthcare as a midwife, in midwifery and maternity service development, and in leadership and advisory roles across Aotearoa. Laura has worked in national health workforce and service planning, employment relations, change management, as a clinical researcher and in rural health models of care redesign. She has worked with many District Health Boards across the motu, NGOs, regional and national organisations including DHB Shared Services, Health Workforce New Zealand, Health Quality and Safety Commission and the University of Auckland. Laura also served as an advisor to the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet on Te Pae Tata, the New Zealand Health Plan.

More recently, she has held the position of General Manager National Hospital and Specialist Services and Acting Deputy Chief Executive Service Development and Relations at Te Aka Whai Ora | The Māori Health Authority.

Laura holds a Master of Public Health, a Master of Business Administration, and a Bachelor of Midwifery degree. She is a member of the New Zealand College of Midwives and a member of Hauora Taiwhenua – the Rural Health Network.

We have been very fortunate to have Deb Pittam as Interim National Chief Midwife, and I thank Deb most sincerely for her tireless contribution and support during this time. Deb will be returning to her substantive role at Te Toka Tumai Auckland.

Further appointments will be announced shortly.

Richard Sullivan