Brian Doolan, CEO
Brian Doolan strongly believes in social and economic justice and says becoming Chief Executive Officer of The Fred Hollows Foundation in 2005 brought together what he’s been working for his whole life.
With his experience and commitment, Brian provides the leadership that has enabled The Foundation to grow and become an even bigger player in health, eye care and blindness prevention.
“If you cut my working life into two you can see one half has been working with Aboriginal communities in Australia and the other half in international development.” - Brian Doolan
During the 1970s and 1980s Brian worked with Aboriginal communities and organisations in New South Wales, the Northern Territory and South Australia.
In the late 1970s he was working with the Aboriginal community of Wilcannia, in western NSW, to help establish an independent and Aboriginal-controlled Medical and Education Centre when he met Fred Hollows.
“I first met Fred at the clinic when he was screening people and at the end of the day I found myself having a yarn with him at the local pub,” says Brian. He and Fred met up again many times over the years.
From 1981 to 1984 Brian was Director of Studies at Tranby Aboriginal College in Sydney. He also worked in and around Alice Springs as Senior Project Officer of Anangu Pitjantjatjara, advising the body holding title to Aboriginal lands in the remote north-western corner of South Australia, and was adviser to the Federal Parliamentary Secretary for Education, Employment and Training for five years.
From the early 1990s to 2003, Brian worked as Country Director of CARE International in Iraq and Vietnam. In 2004, the President of Vietnam awarded Brian the country’s Friendship Medal for his “significant contribution to the economic and social development of Vietnam”, the highest award that can be presented to foreigners.
From 1998 to 2000, Brian also worked for CARE Australia as Principal Executive (Human Resources) and, in 2000, as joint acting CEO.
Most recently, before becoming CEO of The Foundation, Brian was based in Thailand as Regional Director (Asia Pacific) of the US-based Global Alliance for Workers and Communities – a not-for-profit organisation providing support and development programs for factory workers in China, Vietnam, Thailand, India and Indonesia.
Brian is a member of the Board of Trustees of the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) and a member of the Advisory Council of the Nossal Institute of Global Health.
Brian is married and has two children.
Brian Doolan in the media
- ‘Blind Faith’ is an article about Brian Doolan and social responsiblity, featured in Thinking Business Magazine.
- Evenings with Steve Austin gets up close and personal on ABC Radio with Brian Doolan about the work of The Fred Hollows Foundation.
- Satsifaction at second sight a Business Spectator publication Q&A session with Brian Doolan.
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