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The Anchor Excellence team are leaders in their fields

With more than 80 years in aged care between them, the Anchor Excellence team has extensive, practical knowledge of every aspect of the sector, and fully understand the complexities and challenges of running a business in the ever-changing aged care landscape.

This carefully curated team of aged care leaders combine their complementary mix of skills to work seamlessly in supporting business leaders to innovate and achieve their goals.

Using the Business Excellence Framework, Anchor will support your organisation to build the capacity of your leadership, in order to drive and sustain change.

Meet the Anchor Leaders

Cynthia Payne

Managing Director

Cynthia Payne has more than 30 years executive leadership experience and over 20 year as a Director in both NFP and FP boards. Cynthia founded Anchor Excellence in September 2018, AE has impacted over 40% of the Australian aged care market via its programs, solutions and education.
Passionate about leaders, supporting and enabling them and consumers’ lived experience, Cynthia and the seventeen strong AE team together have a formidable level of expertise and commitment to the entire aged care ecosystem.
Cynthia holds an MBA, Bachelor of Applied Science in Nursing. She is a Cert IV qualified Yoga teacher (800HrRYT) and certified practitioner of Balanced Scorecard. She is a seasoned public speaker and MC. She is MAICD, Fellow of the Governance Institute Australia and long term member of the Australian College of Nursing and Fellow of the Manager and Leaders Institute. She is Board adviser to Total Construction (2019- current) and past NED for the National Heart Foundation (2017-2021), Current Independent review panel member for Business Excellence Australia.

Carla Beheram

Chief Operations Officer

Carla Beheram has extensive experience in Senior Management roles within Aged Care.

She has a proven track record of success in all facets of Aged Care Management and has a demonstrated ability in identifying opportunities and turning strategic initiatives into action.

She is highly ethical and has a history of managing all stakeholders with integrity and respect. Carla also holds qualifications in Nursing, Management and Business.

Payal Kapoor

Chief Financial Officer

An experienced, senior finance expert with 25+ years of proven experience in developing strong business partnering finance teams, performing financial and operational turnarounds, complex structuring and transaction services and CFO advisory services.

Payal is driven to bring social impact, which is measurable and felt across various facets of delivery, building strong engagement across their teams and various stakeholders, with thorough business understanding, strong technical skills and a “people first” approach.

Dr Irene Stein

Head of Clinical Governance

Dr Irene Stein is an incredibly capable individual. Working in the age care sector for over 20 years, her work has helped shape Australian care for the better. Irene has been employed across crucial senior positions (both at organisational and research level) including; Director of Care, Business Development Manager, Manager of Policy and Research, and Hon. Visiting Professor at the University of Wollongong.

Claire Ward

Head of Marketing, Aged Services, Compliance Remediation & Consumer Experience Specialist

Claire Ward brings a strategic lens to a highly consumer driven market place. With an outstanding level of skill, knowledge and expertise across the aged care industry, Claire offers significant value in developing and deepening customer experience, as well as using data to effectively inform business decisions.

With a wealth of marketing and communication pedigree, Claire is able to create and deliver effective strategies that drive lead generation, acquisition and customer loyalty.

Akanksha Bernard

Head of AnchorAcademy

Results-orientated nursing home leader knowledgeable about effective recruitment, training and leadership strategies to maintain employee efficiency, accuracy and quality of services. Well organized and resourceful with a proactive mindset and excellent communication skills.

Akanksha brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in managing Residential Aged Care Services with strong Clinical Excellence and Management. Strong leadership, achieving targets and excellent understanding of the regulatory standards are her key strengths.

Her passion lies in training and mentoring the aged care workforce to help provide them the confidence to perform well within their roles.

Judy Martin

Executive Lead – International / SAGE Study Tours & Anchor Specialist Advisor

Spanning 35 years of state, national and international work, Judy has undertaken roles with employers from local and state government and private and non-profit sectors. These roles include, senior executive, Stakeholder engagement manager and consultant across industry sectors Health, Aged Care and Seniors Living. Judy’s core areas of expertise are stakeholder management, Specialist Trainer, and business development.

An initiative she is very proud of, Judy developed the, now well known, international industry study tours for industry CEO’s and executives. Judy has a key and individual role in establishing, marketing, coordinating and leading these tours. She was also responsible for introducing a program to the Australian Aged Care industry linking these organizations with Rural and remote Aged care facilities in Africa.

Kerri Hartney

Aged Services, Interim & Clinical Governance Specialist

Kerri Hartney has extensive aged care experience, having worked in both for-profit and not-for-profit over the last 35 years, with expert operational and clinical excellence in Residential Aged Care.

Kerri has significant expertise in leadership and change management, in particular staff culture and education mentoring support, to enable best practice and regulatory compliance against all industry standards.

Ingrid Fairlie

Aged Services, Disability & Compliance Remediation Specialist

An experienced quality and compliance leader in aged care and disability services, possessing first hand practical and technical knowledge of the respective regulatory frameworks; working on the technical advisory panel of regulatory reforms and development of the Australian Aged Care Standards and guidance material.

Extremely capable, Ingrid brings analytical, critical thinking skills to process management and design improvement, change programs and policy development.

Britt O'Keefe

Disability Specialist

Britt has a deep understanding and unparalleled experience in developing and implementing organisational-wide service delivery and design reforms to sectors experiencing significant transformational change. She is an insightful leader with a unique combination of business acumen, technical expertise and a passion for delivering high-quality client outcomes. Britt is continually handpicked to turn around underperforming organisations, leveraging executive support in successfully delivering organisational transformation change with meticulous attention to detail and quality.
She also has a passion for Australia’s personal care workforce and is completing a Ph.D. exploring voluntary employee turnover and employee retention with both past and present personal care workers.

Sue Smith

Specialist Advisor – Operations, Clinical and Compliance

Sue joined AnchoreExcellence in 2021, she has extensive experience in aged care with 30 years experience in the industry.

Sue has held senior management positions including Director or Care, Group Manager Care & Services across ten services for clinical governance and compliance and Regional Manager across five services.

Sue holds qualifications in nursing, gerontology, management and business.

She is highly versed in quality, compliance and risk management processes, supporting a culture of innovation and best practice.

Sarina Rodgers

Aged Care Leader – Quality, Operations and Client Engagement

Sarina Rodgers is an accomplished professional with over 15 years experience in the aged care and hospitality industries. She has expertise in operations and systems, ensuring resident satisfaction and establishing honest and open relationships with multiple stakeholders.
Sarina is highly versed in all aspects of residential services including occupancy, additional services, back of house operations and property management.
She brings with her a strong focus on quality, continuous improvement and client engagement through her established knowledge of systems, processes, operations and sales.
Sarina is a graduated academic who holds qualifications in Sales and Marketing, Leadership and Management.

Andy Calwell

Specialist Consultant

Andy is an energetic senior leader and adviser with expertise across the across the acute, aged care and home care sectors and beyond.
Clinically trained with wide ranging capabilities, Andy has expertise across the spectrum of consumer experience and engagement, customer feedback management and innovation, clinical governance, quality improvement systems and processes, policy development, analysis, implementation, and evaluation, together with complex governance reporting capability and proven project/program management skills.
Andy models and maintains professional integrity, builds positive collaborative relationships, and works diligently and cooperatively with and within teams

Veronica John

Specialist Consultant

Veronica  is a results driven senior leader with 30 years of acute nursing and aged care experience. Veronica has held  senior roles in clinical governance and quality and compliance roles  for profit and non-profit  aged care services.

Veronica has deep experience in supporting and leading teams to compliance in aged care accreditation in clinical governance and corporate management. Veronica pursues excellence in  high risk high prevalent Consumer Care, supporting and leading Health or Aged Care Facilities in best practice for continuous quality improvement and sustainability.

With additional qualifications as a NDIS behaviour support practitioner, Veronica is best placed to support providers- aged care and NDIS in restrictive practices compliance.

Heather Robertson

Specialist Consultant

Heather has significant expertise in clinical care, education and is highly versed in quality, compliance and risk management processes, safety systems, root cause analysis investigations and policy development.

Heather has a passion for the nursing workforce having completed a research project and thesis exploring the implementation and effectiveness of Clinical Supervision for nursing staff.

Heather holds qualifications in nursing, critical care – emergency stream and clinical leadership and education.

Support Team

Alexandra Brockhurst

Consultancy Practice Manager

Kat Fairlie

Graphic Designer, Marketing Assistant and AnchorAcademy Lead

Andrea Payne

Executive Support