Last updated: 05 Jul, 2019

Doctor and public health advocate Dr Sandro Demaio will become the new Chief Executive Officer of the Victorian Health Promotion Foundation (VicHealth).

Minister for Health Jenny Mikakos announced Dr Demaio’s appointment today. He brings a wealth of experience and commitment to improving health and wellbeing and tackling chronic disease.  He replaces Jerril Rechter who left VicHealth in March to take up a position with Basketball Australia.

Dr Demaio trained and worked at the Alfred Hospital and is a former medical officer with the World Health Organization.

He is the former chief executive of the EAT Foundation and has been the architect of healthy eating and lifestyle campaigns festival21 and NCDFREE, a global movement against chronic disease which reached over 2.5 million people in its first 18 months.

Throughout his career, Dr Demaio has placed an emphasis on providing communities with health advice in an easily accessible way, demonstrated through his work co-hosting the ABC program Ask the Doctor and his cookbook Doctor’s Diet.     

VicHealth is the world’s first health promotion foundation and a global leader in preventing chronic disease. Since its inception in 1987, VicHealth has championed the health and wellbeing of Victorians, working to keep people healthy, well and out of the medical system.

Dr Demaio begins his role later this year.  Dr Lyn Roberts AO will remain as VicHealth Acting CEO until Dr Demaio’s commencement.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Health Jenny Mikakos

“We look forward to working with Dr Demaio on supporting Victorians to live healthy, active lives and congratulate him on his appointment.”

“Dr Demaio is a passionate advocate for improving people’s health who brings a wealth of experience and dedication to the role.”

“On behalf of all Victorians, I thank Jerril Rechter for her dedicated and tremendous years of service to improving the health of Victorians.”

Quotes attributable to VicHealth Chair Fiona McCormack

“The VicHealth Board have a clear strategy in place for the next four years and I am excited to have Dr Demaio lead the organisation as we seek to achieve scale and integration of our work alongside our partners as we seek to prevent chronic disease and fast-track good health for all Victorians.”

Quotes attributable to VicHealth CEO Dr Sandro Demaio

“I am honoured to lead VicHealth, an organisation that in its 30 year history has made significant progress in tackling challenging health issues, such as banning tobacco advertising and preventing family violence.”