Skip to content

Australian Mental Health Prize

Australian Mental Health Prize

The National Mental Health Commission applauds the first Australian Mental Health Prize winner, Kim Ryan, CEO of the Australian College of Mental Health Nurses.

Kim Ryan is a passionate advocate for mental health and for the profession of mental health nursing. Her many achievements include guiding the establishment of the collaborative Mental Health Professionals Association.

In accepting her award, Kim championed the need for more to be done to address links between physical and mental healthcare - a key focus area of ours.

The National Mental Health Commission also commends the seven Australian Mental Health Prize finalists; which includes one of our Commissioners, Ian Hickie.

Ian Hickie is an internationally-renowned researcher in depression, early intervention and youth mental health. He was founding CEO of beyondblue and helped create headspace and the Young &Well CRC.

Another finalist, John Mendoza, is a mental health and suicide prevention advocate, policy analyst and researcher committed to sector reform and reducing the rate of suicide in Australia. He has worked in alcohol and drug and mental health for nearly 35 years.

John Mendoza is working with the National Mental Health Commission and other stakeholders on an Australian Defence Force suicide prevention project.

About the Prize

The Australian Mental Health Prize was established by the University of New South Wales through its School of Psychiatry, Australia’s pre-eminent psychiatric research department.

The Prize recognises Australians who have made outstanding contributions to either the promotion of mental health, or the prevention/treatment of mental illness.

This year’s winner and finalists were selected from an impressive field of more than 130 submissions from across the country.

For more info visit Australian Mental Health Prize.

Aboriginal flag Torres Strait Islander flag

Acknowledgement of Country

The Commission acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands throughout Australia.
We pay our respects to their clans, and to the elders, past present and emerging, and acknowledge their continuing connection to land, sea and community.


The Commission is committed to embracing diversity and eliminating all forms of discrimination in the provision of health services. The Commission welcomes all people irrespective of ethnicity, lifestyle choice, faith, sexual orientation and gender identity.

Lived Experience

We acknowledge the individual and collective contributions of those with a lived and living experience of mental ill-health and suicide, and those who love, have loved and care for them. Each person’s journey is unique and a valued contribution to Australia’s commitment to mental health suicide prevention systems reform.