Lifeline appoints a new CEO
Lifeline Australia today announced the appointment of a new Chief Executive Officer, Pete Shmigel.
John Brogden, Chairman of Lifeline Australia, said that Mr Shmigel brings both empathy and effectiveness to the task of taking Lifeline Australia and the battle against suicide to the next level.
“Suicide is a national emergency with seven Australians dying every day and the number of suicides increasing by 20 per cent over the past ten years. Lifeline Australia is committed to re-doubling its efforts to help save and change lives, and therefore its Board is pleased to appoint a highly-qualified and highly-motivated new CEO,” Mr Brogden said.
“Pete’s family has lived the experience of positive recovery from suicidal behaviour. His son, Tim, who made three attempts on his own life as a teenager, recently walked 6500 kilometres from Australia’s southernmost point to northernmost point to raise awareness and funds for Lifeline.
“Pete has more than 20 years of successful experience at the highest levels of Australian public policy, business and consulting. He is well placed to implement the Board’s strategy and guide the organisation as it contributes to saving and changing lives in a very complex, fast-changing digital world.”
Pete Shmigel said it was the greatest honour to be part of an organisation that listens to and helps hundreds of thousands of Australians in their time of need.
“Suicide is the leading cause of death for Australian's aged 15 to 44 and our Indigenous people’s suicide rate is amongst the highest in the world. In a great country as fortunate as ours, we can do much better for our friends, family, neighbours and workmates in need,” Mr Shmigel said.
“Because every life counts, we have to ensure each of the more than 900,000 calls to Lifeline from across the country and across the clock counts. And, we need to meet the increasing demand from the online world.
“Lifeline has the experience and capability to contribute our positive solutions for a mentally healthy Australia, including through a much-needed national suicide prevention strategy.
“I look forward to working for and with our volunteers and network, our staff, the Board, our government partners and our donors who help make Lifeline a uniquely community-based and hands-on organisation in the mental health area. We will build on our values of respect, care and support while we put Australians in crisis at the centre of everything we do.”
For crisis or suicide prevention support, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or visit www.lifeline.org.au/gethelp.