Mental Health Commissioner of South Australia
Taimi Allan was appointed Mental Health Commissioner of South Australia after serving as Tumu Whakarae (Director) of Ember Innovations (Aotearoa New Zealand), an organisation dedicated to implementing entrepreneurial solutions to mental health system gaps. She has also served on Te Hiringa Mahara (The Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission of Aotearoa New Zealand), the national Suicide Mortality Review Committee and many other strategic systems change spaces.
Taimi brings a lived experience voice to service improvement, policy development, and suicide prevention. In all of her roles, she uses her personal experience of mental distress, addiction, service use and recovery coupled with a practical understanding of designing and delivering innovative solutions, to support, implement and advocate for holistic, positive and impactful change both within and external to the sector.
Taimi is passionate about improving wellbeing through a combination of face-to-face connection, technology and creativity. Some of her previous roles, projects and collaborations include leading the oldest continuously running mental health consumer advocacy organisation in Aotearoa New Zealand, implementing the world’s first national peer-supported holistic, online and fully accessible wellbeing sessions, co-designing an award-winning bicultural and fully accessible lived experience leadership programme, producing a virtual reality power of contact empathy-building interactive film platform, and creating a global arts, comedy and theatre festival.
She was honoured by the Australasian Mental Health Outcomes and Information Conference with Mental Health’s “Emerging Leader” award in 2019 and was a 2021 Local Hero Medallist in Kiwibank’s New Zealander of the Year Awards.