The Team

The RHH Research Foundation is comprised of five dedicated team members, Heather, Belinda, Sophie, Claire (currently on Parental Leave), Julie and Eve who all share a passion for local medical research. From a diverse range of backgrounds, we are a cohesive team who approach our daily work with energy and enthusiasm, always striving to maintain a high level of professionalism along with a sense of fun!

Heather Francis

Chief Executive Officer

With extensive experience in the not for profit sector, Heather has been CEO of the Foundation for almost a decade now. Heather’s role is to oversee the day to day activities and resources of the Foundation, providing strategic and governance advice to the Board and various Foundation committees. Heather is devoted to facilitating continual investment in health and medical research to benefit all Tasmanians.

Heather Francis

Belinda Ratnik

Finance and Operations

Belinda comes to the Foundation with over 15 years’ experience in senior management within both the not-for-profit and corporate sectors across three states. Working in a range of industries throughout her career, Belinda brings a wealth of business and financial and administrative acumen to the Foundation. Belinda oversees the day-to-day financial and administrative operational aspects of the Foundation in support of the CEO and Board.

Julie Turnbull

Research and Administration 

Julie has recently joined the Foundation, filling Claire’s role while she is on parental leave. She has enjoyed a diverse career across a variety of sectors including tourism, local government and graphic design, with significant project management experience, and is keen to utilise her skills within the not for profit sector. Julie enjoys walking, yoga, cooking and has a passion for all things Japanese; she is looking forward to post-Covid when she can travel there again.

Claire Vicars (Parental Leave)

Research and Administration

Claire’s significant experience, gained within several Federal Government agencies including Intellectual Property Australia and the Community Grants Hub, benefits her role in supporting the CEO to administer the Foundation’s research grants program, helping to facilitate positive relationships with researchers and guide them through the research grant process. Claire is currently on parental leave until June 2022.

Eve Curley

Communications and Development

Eve has had over 12 years’ experience in media and communications working in the sports industry, as well as freelance writing stints for a variety of publications.  With a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Journalism, Eve has passion for storytelling and the health and well-being of the Tasmanian community.

Eve Curley

Sophie Kelly

Events and Marketing

Sophie’s background is sales and marketing across Tasmanian hotels and tourism attractions, as well as work in local government and the not-for-profit sector.  Sophie is looking forward to supporting the Foundation continue to build its event space as well as developing new relationships in the local corporate sector. In her spare time, Sophie enjoys sailing with the DSS, cycling and is currently studying a Graduate Certificate in Business Studies with UTAS.  


Special thanks to our major sponsor
Johns Group Tasmania