Our board & governance
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Our board & governance

Meet the board at the heart of the Heart Foundation.

Governance overview 

The Heart Foundation is a National Health Promotion Charity with offices in each state and territory. The National Heart Foundation of Australia (Heart Foundation) is a Company Limited by Guarantee. The national entity delivers our One Heart 2018-2020 Strategy, with the delivery and collaboration of localised activities and events co-ordinated with the state and territory offices. 

The Heart Foundation effectively operates as a single unified national organisation, although each state and territory is a subsidiary entity of the Heart Foundation and each local entity is chaired by a national Board Member. 

Each state and territory may nominate two individuals to become members of the national entity. Each state and territory entityhas a Local Advisory Board to support and advise the local CEO. Members of the Heart Foundation  meet with the national Board and are invited to attend the Annual General Meeting.

The Heart Foundation Board  

The Heart Foundation Board determines strategy, while management is responsible for ensuring our strategy is effectively implemented. The Heart Health and Research Strategy Committees have established expert technical advisory groups that assist these Committees to provide advice and recommendations to the Board. 

Generally, the Board have authority for approving:

  • Strategy 
  • Annual budget  
  • Heart Foundation scientific policy papers and guidelines 
  • Annual reports 
  • Heart Foundation organisational policy 
  • Reputation and risk management  

Board Committees

The Heart Foundation Board is a skills-based board of 9 Directors. It has established the following Advisory Committees: 

  • Risk, Audit and Governance 
  • Heart Health 
  • Research Strategy 
  • Finance 
  • Investment 
  • Development 
  • Board Executive 
The Board Committees have a terms of reference to govern their activities and meet regularly throughout the year to ensure the provision of appropriate  advice and recommendations to the Heart Foundation Board. 

One Heart strategy 2018-2020 

The One Heart strategy (2018-2020) establishes the framework for programs and activities delivered by the Heart Foundation. The strategy breaks down initiatives and activities at a local and national level. The strategy’s performance is measured by Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) approved by the NHFA Board. 

Good Governance

The Heart Foundation Board is committed to ensuring that standards of good governance are realised openly and with integrity, commensurate with Heart Foundation’s broader objectives. Part of the Board’s role in relation to corporate governance is to implement and maintain a culture of good corporate governance respected by both internal and external stakeholders. The Board recognises its role in overseeing the determination and implementation of policy frameworks that reflect good corporate governance aligned with the Australian Charities and Not-for-profit Commission (‘ACNC’) Governance Standards.

The ACNC Governance Standards are the core requirements Heart Foundation applies in relation to corporate governance. These ACNC Governance Standards are:

  • Standard 1 – Purposes and not-for-profit nature
  • Standard 2 – Accountability to members
  • Standard 3 – Compliance with Australian laws
  • Standard 4 – Suitability of responsible persons, and
  • Standard 5 – Duties of responsible persons.

The Heart Foundation continues to be committed to undertaking governance measures which strengthen relationships and processes to ensure that the funds raised by, or gifted to us, are used to carry out our vision – an Australia free of heart disease – and our  mission – to prevent heart disease and improve the heart health and quality of life of all Australians through our work in prevention, support and research.

Priority Areas

Our commitment to people who are socially and economically disadvantaged and affected by heart disease remain a priority. This focus includes:

  • Communities in regional, rural and remote areas 
  • People from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds 
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.   
The Heart Foundation is committed to maintain our important local relationships, programs and activities, and continue to be a strong local presence in each state and territory.  

Our legal entities 

Heart Health Check Toolkit

Heart Health Check Toolkit

You can help keep families like Paul’s together.

You can help keep families like Paul’s together.

You can help keep families like Paul’s together.

Archie was only 11 when he saw his dad, Paul, suffer a heart attack on the hockey field. ...

Research funding programs

Research funding programs

Research funding programs

Our research funding supports outstanding researchers who share our vision of an Australia free from heart disease. ...

Our history

Our history

Our history

For more than 60 years the Heart Foundation has been helping improve heart health across the nation....

Heart attack recovery – your first month

Heart attack recovery – your first month

Heart attack recovery – your first month

Explore the Heart Foundation’s guide on what to expect in the first month after your heart attack. ...

How can I eat more fruit and vegetables for a healthy heart?

How can I eat more fruit and vegetables for a healthy heart?

How can I eat more fruit and vegetables for a healthy heart?

How we fought heart disease in 2020

How we fought heart disease in 2020

How we fought heart disease in 2020

Everything we do is possible thanks to the generosity of our supporters. ...

Your heart is your most important tool

Your heart is your most important tool

Your heart is your most important tool

Men’s Health Week is the perfect time to think about your heart....

Heart procedures and devices

Heart procedures and devices

Heart procedures and devices

If you have a heart condition, your doctor may recommend treatment or procedures...

Support and resources for health care professionals

Support and resources for health care professionals

Support and resources for health care professionals

Our range of clinical and patient support resources are available for you to use in your daily practice....

Heart Week

Heart Week

Workplace giving program

Workplace giving program

Workplace giving program

Workplace giving is a simple and tax effective way for employees to make regular donations to a cause they care about. ...

Heart Age Calculator

Heart Age Calculator

Heart Age Calculator

Could you be at risk of heart disease? Get your estimated heart age now....

24-hour Blood Pressure Monitoring

24-hour Blood Pressure Monitoring

Blood pressure monitoring at home using a 24-hour blood pressure monitor test....

Keeping a close watch on brain and kidney health during heart surgery.

Keeping a close watch on brain and kidney health during heart surgery.

Keeping a close watch on brain and kidney health during heart surgery.

What is heart valve disease?

What is heart valve disease?

What is heart valve disease?

Heart valve disease means that your heart valve or valves don't open or close properly....

Clinical resources: Coronary heart disease and mental health

Clinical resources: Coronary heart disease and mental health

The prevalence of depression is high in patients with coronary heart disease (CHD)....

Absolute CVD risk calculator

Absolute CVD risk calculator

The Absolute CVD risk calculator estimates the likelihood of having a heart attack or stroke in the next five years....

Coronary Artery Calcium Scoring

Coronary Artery Calcium Scoring

A coronary artery calcium score can be used following a Heart Health Check to estimate your risk of heart attack....

The Heart Foundation Community

The Heart Foundation Community

The Heart Foundation Community

We need your opinion, experience and skills to help us improve the heart health of all Australians. ...

Cardiac rehabilitation resources for healthcare providers

Cardiac rehabilitation resources for healthcare providers

Useful cardiac rehabilitation resources for health professionals....

Cyril credits cardiac rehab for getting his life back

Cyril credits cardiac rehab for getting his life back

Cyril credits cardiac rehab for getting his life back

Cyril suffered a heart attack in 2015. Cardiac rehab helped get his life back on track. ...

Life changing research currently underway

Life changing research currently underway

Life changing research currently underway

Search our current researcher's and the ground breaking research being undertaken....

Kid-friendly lentil stew

Kid-friendly lentil stew

30 minutes
Serves 4

Key Statistics: Heart Failure

Key Statistics: Heart Failure

Statistics and information on heart failure in Australia ...

Absolute CVD risk clinical guidelines

Absolute CVD risk clinical guidelines

The Absolute Cardiovascular Disease Risk (CVD) Guidelines helps healthcare professionals identify, prevent and manage a person's risk of developing CVD. ...

Green power smoothie

Green power smoothie

Green power smoothie

Heart Bypass Surgery

Heart Bypass Surgery

Coronary bypass surgery is a common procedure that can dramatically improve the health of your heart. ...

Finding her voice: Sophie Nester’s heart story

Finding her voice: Sophie Nester’s heart story

Sophie Nester was born with a heart condition and a form of spina bifida. She had three open heart surgeries before she turned five. Now 26, Sophie is a disability support worker in Bendigo, Victoria....

Blueberry cheesecake oats

Blueberry cheesecake oats

Blueberry cheesecake oats

10 minutes
Serves 2