Keeping kids safe

Associate Professor Anne Johnson


Through her advocacy and leadership in community health, health promotion and child safety projects, Associate Professor Anne Johnson AM has played an important role in reducing the rate of child deaths caused by unintentional and preventable injuries.

Although he died when she was just 13 years old, Professor Johnson’s father was a great inspiration for her to study at university.

‘I was very excited to study at Flinders University as my dad had been very encouraging of me to be the first in our family to study at university,’ says Professor Johnson (DipT(NursEd) ’86, PhD(Med) ’99) . ‘I was fortunate to make that dream come true.’

Graduating with a Diploma of Teaching (Nurse Education) in 1986, Professor Johnson later returned to Flinders to study her PhD, with a focus on public health and organisational change. Through her research she became known as a national and international expert on health promotion, health literacy and increasing community participation in health services.

‘My PhD equipped me with high-level theoretical knowledge, critical thinking abilities, research and writing skills,’ says Professor Johnson. ‘It enabled me the freedom to focus my work on areas I was passionate about making a difference in.’

Professor Johnson was President of Kidsafe SA for 15 years, on the National Council of Kidsafe Australia for ten years, and held a 12-month scholarship position with the charity to develop a strategy to link Kidsafe SA with rural and remote communities. During this time she contributed to the collaborative movement in child injury prevention in Australia, which led to a 60% reduction in child deaths caused by unintentional and preventable injuries.

After many years at the Women’s and Children’s Hospital, Professor Johnson became Manager of the National Resource Centre in Consumer Participation, then Associate Professor of Public Health at Flinders University. In 2008 she created a consultancy business, which she ran until retiring in late 2016.

‘I feel proud to be a graduate of Flinders University,’ says Professor Johnson. ‘It is a progressive university and as such attracts progressive critical thinkers who want to equip themselves to make a positive difference in the world.’

Associate Professor Anne Johnson AM was awarded a 2018 Flinders University Distinguished Alumni Award for her significant contribution to community health, through leadership, advocacy and collaboration in health promotion and child safety projects, particularly Kidsafe SA.

Flinders graduates have global reach and international impact, read more

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