Olga Havnen

CEO of Danila Dilb Health Service (DDHS)

NTNomineeAustralian of the Year2022

Olga Havnen has led Danila Dilba Health Service (DDHS) to become one of the largest Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations in the country. As CEO, she has led strategically, providing culturally safe care for Aboriginal Australians.

Under Olga’s leadership, DDHS has provided culturally appropriate messaging to protect Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities against COVID-19, opened a respiratory clinic to encourage COVID-19 testing, and set up vaccination centres that Indigenous people are comfortable attending. Olga has also advocated for safe isolation spaces for homeless and transient clients after testing.

Olga’s service goes well beyond her role. She has advocated at home and at the UN against law reforms that disproportionately incarcerate Indigenous young people. Olga was also part of the five-year battle that successfully blocked an alcohol superstore being built next to one of Darwin's dry Indigenous communities.

Olga is retiring as CEO of an exceptionally resilient organisation that will retain her drive to improve the health of Aboriginal Australians.