Darryl O’Donnell appointed as head of AFAO

Daryl O'Donnell AFAO-001The Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations (AFAO) has announced the appointment of Darryl O’Donnell as Executive Director.

Mr O’Donnell has been appointed to replace current Executive Director Rob Lake until the end December 2016, when a national and international Executive recruitment will take place.

Outgoing Executive Director Rob Lake said he has been proud to serve the community in the role for five years.

“It has always been a challenging and exciting role, leading AFAO’s domestic and international programs, and I’m so pleased that AFAO continues to attract leaders of the calibre of Darryl,” Mr Lake said.

“This transition to new leadership and the next steps for AFAO in the Australian HIV response and in South East Asia hold much promise in meeting our national and global goals to end HIV.”

Speaking to JOYFM’s Dean beck earlier this week Mr Lake said Mr O’Donnell had the experience to take on the role highlighting his work as policy director at ACON, the NSW HIV/AIDS organisation.

“He has a long history in this sector, many people will know him, and will have worked with him.” Mr Lake told JOY 94.9

Mr Lake said he had always planned to stay in the position for five years, and now was a good time to be moving on from the organisation.

AFAO President, Dr Bridget Haire, praised the contribution to AFAO and to the Australian HIV response of Mr Lake since his appointment in 2011.

“Rob has made a significant contribution to the fight against HIV in his time at AFAO,” Dr Haire said, “We thank Rob for his commitment, leadership, and unwavering support over the last five years.”

Mr O’Donnell has over 25 years’ experience in HIV across community, research and government settings.

“We’re at a tremendously exciting moment in Australia’s response to HIV. The continuing efforts of our communities, and the massive interest in PrEP, puts us in sight of our goal of virtually eliminating HIV transmission by 2020,” Mr O’Donnell said.

“To achieve this goal our communities need much better access to PrEP and new HIV tests, and our organisations need the resources for trusted, credible peer-based programs. We need both these things to achieve our goals: technology and people trusted by our communities to provide education and support.”

“In this federal election year, we’ll be surveying the Government, Opposition and minor parties and asking what commitments they will make to our communities as we work to end HIV. We’ll publish those results widely and ask our communities to consider them as they decide their votes.

“There’s an enormous amount to be done to do justice to our communities’ efforts to end HIV. AFAO has been representing our communities and their organisations for 30-years. I’m delighted to stepping into this role and to be contributing to AFAO’s proud history,” Mr O’Donnell said.

Mr O’Donnell will take up the role in early March.


AFAO Media Release

Joy 94.5


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