Chief Executive Officer
The Dr Edward Koch Foundation
Dulcie Bird is a founding director of The Dr Edward Koch Foundation and was appointed to the board in March 1997 and to her role as chief executive officer in July 1997.
During her time at the Foundation, she has helped to grow it from a fledgling charity to a nationally recognised non-profit organisation. The Foundation is now highly regarded for its work looking after the health and wellbeing of people in communities in regional Australia, with a particular focus on suicide prevention and mental health issues.
As chief executive officer, Dulcie played a leading role in developing and delivering the Foundation's Life Workshops, which train people in suicide prevention, the Life Bereavement Support Service, which was a service for family members and others in the community bereaved by suicide or other sudden unexpected death and an intensive suicide prevention program which is now being applied in many of the communities of Far North Queensland.
She also chairs the Far North Queensland Suicide Prevention Taskforce, a coordinating body for the many organisations and individuals in the region with an interest in mental health and suicide prevention and she has participated in developing several position statements and presented at international conferences on suicide prevention. Dulcie hosted the Queensland Suicide & Self-harm Prevention Conference 2008, the Suicide and Self-harm Prevention Conferences of 2012 and 2015, and the World Federation for Mental Health International Conference 2016. She was also involved in the successful campaign to achieve World Health Organisation Safe City accreditation for Cairns in 2009 and is a member of the Mental Health Indigenous Advisory Committee and chairs the Life Advisory Committee.
By giving evidence to the senate inquiry on suicide in Australia, Dulcie contributed to the report “Hidden Toll: Suicide in Australia Commonwealth Government Senate Inquiry 2010” and she has also given evidence to the senate select committee for regional and remote indigenous communities.
Dulcie has been responsible for securing funding from individuals as well as the corporate and community sectors and developing the Foundation’s volunteer strategy.
Dulcie has always involved herself in community work and is recognised for her help with children with disabilities and her work in suicide prevention. She has a bachelor of social science with a major in sociology and French, from James Cook University. She has been honoured with an Australia Day Award for services both to art and the Dr Edward Koch Foundation in 2004 and was a finalist at the Queensland Regional Achievement & Community Awards 2010. In 2017, she became an honorary member of the James Cook University Chapter of the Golden Key society.
Dulcie has over 17 years experience in the health care and community services sectors in the Cairns and Hinterland region. Prior to her work as a founding director and current chief executive officer of the Dr Edward Koch Foundation, previous roles held by Dulcie were executive support officer, UQ Professorial Office of Public Health, at the Cairns Tropical Public Health Unit, Qld Health, records administration officer at the Peninsula & Torres Strait Regional Health Authority, Qld Health and records administration officer at the Far North Qld Electricity Board.