Life Members

Daryle32Dr Daryle Deering – First DANA Life Member from New Zealand

Dr Daryle Deering was awarded DANA Life membership at the 2014 Annual General Meeting (AGM) held in Sydney for her significant contribution to DANA and to addiction nursing. She is the first Life Member from New Zealand.

A founding DANA member in New Zealand, Daryle continues to encourage others to join and ensures that DANA has a voice in New Zealand.

Daryle’s work since 1980 has been primarily in community-based services including community alcohol and drug services, opioid substitution treatment, family and youth mental health services. Her career has featured senior management and leadership roles including a period as the Director of Mental Health Nursing for the Canterbury District Health Board from 2000-2007.

Awarded a Master of Health Sciences in 1997 Daryle then received her PhD from the University of Otago in 2007 for a dissertation titled ‘Methadone Maintenance Treatment in New Zealand’. She continues to be actively involved with research and she is currently a Senior Lecturer within the interdisciplinary National Addiction Centre at the University of Otago in Christchurch.

Since 2004 Daryle has led a national nursing reference group, to define addiction nursing and to begin the process of clearly articulating the knowledge, skills and attitudes demonstrated at different levels of practice, from novice nurse to advanced practitioner. This culminated in the development of the Aotearoa / New Zealand Addiction Specialty Nursing Competency Framework* (in collaboration with Matua Raki and DANA). Daryle has also been a member of the DANA Standards Expert Reference Group.

Daryle has also held prominent nursing roles in New Zealand such as Vice President and President of Te Ao Maaramatanga, the New Zealand College of Mental Health Nurses. She was also instrumental in collaborating with DANA to bring about the first Mental Health and Addiction Nursing conference, which was held in Auckland in June 2013.

*Available under ‘publications’ on this website


Charlotte de Crespigny

Professor de Crespigny (RN BN Grad. Dip. PHC (Addictions) PhD) is Professor of Drug and Alcohol Nursing, Joint Chair of the School of Nursing, University of Adelaide and Drug & Alcohol Services, SA (DASSA). Charlotte has led research and education in alcohol and other drugs, mental health comorbidity and Aboriginal mental health care. Her approach is to build teams work in partnership across systems, nursing and other disciplines and groups including; public health, medicine, social work, pharmacology, Aboriginal health, community and consumer advocates. She is dedicated to providing innovative ways to inform and bridge gaps between areas of practice, education with research.

Charlotte has been a member of DANA since 1989 and she is always interested in supporting and learning from clinicians, educators and researchers in the mutual quest for new knowledge and ways to deliver quality health care. Charlotte has produced a range of journal articles, reports, clinical guidelines and chapters in international texts.  Charlotte is also a mother of five and grandmother of seven.



Tonina Harvey

Tonina began her career in the drug and alcohol field after completing her post graduate Psychiatric Nursing Certificate at Rozelle Hospital in 1984.

Her career has included many senior positions across a range of service settings around metropolitan Sydney.

Since 2006 Tonina has worked in the disability sector as the General Manager Community Services, ParaQuad NSW but maintains and active interest in the D&A field. She continues to work for DANA as the secretariat to the Standards Expert Advisory Group (SERG).

Tonina’s work, completed in NSW, has provided guidelines and resources for all nurses to support them to effectively manage alcohol and other drug related disorders.

Some of Tonina’s achievements include:

  • the development of the NSW Nursing Project: Alcohol and Other Drugs (1994 – 2006);
  • the development, and Chair, of the NSW Drug and Alcohol Nursing Advisory Committee for the Centre for Drug and Alcohol  (NSW Health 2000 – 2006);

She also:

  • developed and conducted ‘1995/96 Survey of Activities Related to the NSW Strategic Plan for Nurse Education and Nursing Management of Alcohol and Other Drugs’ to gain a benchmark of current practice
  • Established a mentoring program for nurse managers across NSW (to implement recommendations from the initial Strategic Plan)
  • Gained funding from NSW Health to set up specialist D&A CNC positions in each health region in NSW
  • Developed a partnership and gained funding from NSW Health to enable the College of Nursing to conduct rural and regional workshops for nurses across NSW 2000-2004
  • Commissioned and supported the writing of Distance Education Packages for RNs and ENs –  the College of Nursing.
  • Reviewed 2000-2003 policy and clinical guidelines for nursing practice. The reviewed documentation was published in 2007.

In recognition of her achievements, Tonina was awarded Life Membership of DANA in 2005.  She was nominated by her peers to receive an Order of Australia for recognition of her contribution to developing and enhancing drug and alcohol nursing policy and practice in Australia.

Tonina’s publications include:

  • Harvey TL and Russell SV. (1996) Mainstreaming Drug & Alcohol Issues into Nursing Practice, Journal of Substance Misuse.
  • Harvey, T and Dawes, L. (1998) Commissioned Report- Consultation on the Implementation of NSW Nurses Strategic Plan Alcohol and Other Drugs, Southern Area Health Service, NSW.
  •  NSW Health Publication: ‘1995/96 Survey of Activities Related to the NSW Strategic Plan for Nurse Education and Nursing Management of Alcohol and Other Drugs’
  • NSW Health Publication:  ‘Framework for Progress 2000-2003 – Alcohol and Other Drug Policy for Nursing Practice in NSW’
  • NSW Health Publication: ‘Clinical Guidelines 2000-2003 – Alcohol and Other Drug Policy for Nursing Practice in NSW’.

Jennifer Holmes

This is my story of how I ended up as a DANA life member. It is an indulgent piece however the creation of this bought back many fond memories.

Jennifer Holmes was born in Clare South Australia and grew up on a small farm near Booborowie just outside the beautiful Clare Valley. This accident of birth and a misspent matriculation year has fostered a long love affair with quality wine, drunk in moderation of course. I trained as a Registered Nurse at Burra and the Royal Adelaide Hospitals in the mid 1970s. After a year in Melbourne at the Royal Women’s Hospital I enrolled in a Graduate Diploma Health Counselling at the South Australian Institute of Technology as I wanted to know how to talk to women who were dying. I had being doing night duty on an Oncology ward caring for women in their thirties with ovarian cancer. I embraced this year of full time tertiary study with great enthusiasm much to the distress of my sisters who were not prepared for the change from a bossy older sister to “how do you feel about that?”. Don’t you counsel me was a common response when I attempted to practice my new communication skills.

After a holiday in Sydney following the completion of my psychiatric nurse training at Hillcrest Hospital I responded to a job advertisement seeking someone who was interested in a challenge. When offered I accepted a job as a nurse counsellor with the Drugs in Pregnancy at the King George V Hospital, Sydney in November 1987. This was to be the beginning of a 25 year plus career as a Drug and Alcohol nurse.

I was fortunate to hear about a meeting at Concord Hospital in 1989 for Drug and Alcohol Nurses. What a wonderful feeling to walk into a room of like-minded individuals after the somewhat cool reception of the midwives at KGV. Upon reflection these early DANA meetings helped me meet the double challenge of joining a new nursing speciality and moving states. The health system in NSW was certainly more complicated than the system I knew well in Adelaide. DANA provided me with priceless collegial support and inspiration. I paid this back by becoming the DANA treasurer. This was my first experience of bookkeeping and I was lucky that the balance sheet stayed in the black and passed the auditors inspection. I remember that DANA had a healthy bank balance of just under $5000. After a couple of years as treasurer the foundation members thought it was time for some new blood at the top and I reluctantly took on the role of president. I was young, naive and didn’t have much of an idea on constitutions and meeting procedures however we managed to make a few key decisions that changed the face of DANA.

Working with Meredith Adams we took the bold decision to move the annual conference out of Concord Hospital and into a 4 star hotel in Darling Harbor. I had the job of researching the venues and chose the Novotel because it had a great seafood buffet. My principles of conference planning are provide long lunch breaks and good food, throw in a couple of entertaining keynote speakers and a conference dinner with dancing and all will be well. Poor Meredith suffered the anxiety of the deposit alone nearly using up all DANA’s funds. I wrote a letter for funding to the Health Department for sponsorship and they readily agreed. I should have asked for double the amount. Our bold experiment worked and nurses turned up, loved the food (drank too much) and the conference was an outstanding success. We quadrupled the bank balance in a year. Why am I raving on about a conference I hear you ask. DANA conferences are special. DANA members are warm and welcoming. New presenters have an opportunity to share their knowledge in a supportive collegial environment. Unlike some other areas of nursing we don’t beat each other up. The friendships I have made have endured, enriched and sustained me throughout my career. I return to work inspired and ready for new challenges each year.

DANA was initially a NSW based organisation however during my time as President there was a nurse from South Australia named Charlotte de Crespigny who challenged us to expand first into a national and then later an Australasian organisation. Upon reflection I believe this was a sound decision and has enriched DANA. This transition expanded the executive of DANA to the outstanding group it is today.

I am extremely proud to be a member of DANA and remain involved through my small contribution as Public Officer.

Meredith Adams

Meredith Adams worked for 20 years as the CNC, in the Consultation and Liaison Service at the Concord Repatriation General Hospital, Sydney.

Meredith has also been an active member of DANA and for almost 15 years was the Chair of the Conference Steering Committee. Meredith has also chaired the CNC Support Group in Sydney and was actively involved with promoting drug health nursing in Sydney.

Meredith’s presented the first  DANA oration, “DANA: 25 years old and still going strong!” at the DANA National Conference 2011.


Leanne Keen (1956-2012)

Leanne was a founding member of DANA when it was established in 1985. She was Vice President for many years.

Leanne graduated as an RN from St Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney in 1984. She gained experience in ICU and Accident & Emergency but soon found her way into Alcohol and Other Drug Nursing and Mental Health Nursing.  Her career features both clinical and senior management roles in a variety of settings and across NSW, ACT and North Queensland.

Leanne has published and presented, nationally and internationally. She also holds qualifications from the NSW College of Nursing and Deakin University, a Bachelor of Arts Degree from University of New England, and studied towards a Masters of Science through the University of Wollongong.

Reluctantly Leanne retired from the nursing in 2004 due to ill health. She remains interested, committed and supportive in the challenges for the future direction of Nursing, in particular, Mental Health, Alcohol, Tobacco and other Drug related nursing issues. Sadly Leanne passed away in December 2012.


Chris Shanley

Chris was DANA President for three years in the early 1990’s. He worked in a number of roles in the ATODS field, including hostel nurse, methadone unit, hospital liaison nurse and a long period in education and training at the Centre for Education and Information on Drugs and Alcohol (CEIDA).

He made important contributions to the early development of DANA by encouraging involvement of members  from outside NSW, promoting communication through publication of a regular newsletter and moving the annual conference from a local hospital setting to a professional conference venue and programming.