Announcement: Retirement of Australian Network on Disability CEO

Wed 14 October 2020

The Board of Directors of the Australian Network on Disability Ltd (“AND”) today announce that our CEO Suzanne Colbert AM has decided to retire from her current full-time role with this organisation at the end of December.

Woman in corporate attire smiling at the camera

Image: Suzanne Colbert AM, the Australian Network on Disability CEO. 

Suzanne’s retirement will conclude twenty years of highly conspicuous and extremely productive service as both the senior executive leader, and the public face of AND.

It is with mixed emotions that the Directors have accepted Suzanne’s decision to retire as we move through the celebrations of our twentieth anniversary in October. Suzanne is an original founder of and was the key executive leader to start the AND organisation in 2000. During the past two decades, Suzanne has overseen the organisation’s significant growth and the enhancement of its national and international reputation. AND is now the leading national membership-based organisation supporting the creation of more disability-confident workplaces, marketplaces and service providers in Australia, through the energetic and committed work of our staff and 300 organisational members.

Suzanne is a towering figure and passionate advocate in this country for the well over one million adults with disability who are current and potential, active and respected contributors to our society and economy. Her widespread respect amongst senior business, government, community and political leaders in this country as the key workplace disability advocate in the private sector led to her being appointed a Member of the Order of Australia.

Through her diligence, innovation, care and outstanding leadership Suzanne completes her service at AND leaving a very strong organisation of directors, managers, staff, members and stakeholders to continue the successful pursuit of AND’s mission and work.

As from 1 January 2021, our Deputy CEO Amy Whalley will become Acting CEO and continue in that interim role until a final appointment is made. Further, Suzanne Colbert will remain an active member of the AND family. Following her retirement Suzanne will assist the organisation in a part time consulting capacity, until a permanent new CEO commences during 2021.

An executive search firm will be appointed to assist the Board to identify Suzanne’s replacement in what she describes as the “best job in the country”, with details posted on the AND website and publicised elsewhere at the end of October.

On behalf of all the directors, staff, members and stakeholders of the AND, I offer our most sincere thanks to Suzanne for a fabulous job well done as CEO at AND. Her highly professional service has led to an excellent set of outcomes that have established enormous credibility and respect for this organisation and our service to people with disability. Suzanne leaves a tremendous and unparalleled legacy of achievement, having improved the lives of so many.

All of us wish Suzanne, her husband John and their family the very best for the future, and a happy and healthy retirement.



Peter Wilson AM

Australian Network on Disability Chair 

For and on behalf of the Board of Directors

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