Centacare has appointed child protection specialist Leanne Haddad as Deputy Director.

Leanne will commence in the role early January and work closely with Director, Pauline Connelly.

Highly regarded in national and state community services sectors, Pauline has led Centacare since August and was recently appointed for a further 12 months by Catholic Archbishop of Adelaide, Patrick O’Regan.

Currently, Executive Manager – Children’s Services Unit (CSU), Leanne joined Centacare in 2017 and oversees a range of metropolitan and regional-based programs including foster care, reunification and therapeutic multidisciplinary intensive family support services.

She has a genuine commitment to Centacare’s Catholic Social Teaching, and more than 22 years’ experience in operational child protection positions; policy and planning; service design; innovation; learning and development; leadership; and contract and project management.

At Centacare, Leanne has turned at-risk contracts into highly successful programs and led numerous successful tenders and grants. These include the $20.7 million RESTORE Intensive Family Services – the largest service of its kind in South Australia.

Under Leanne’s leadership, CSU was this year highlighted for excellence in service delivery as part of Centacare’s Quality Innovation Performance accreditation review. CSU programs Breathing Space and Dad’s Business received commendations.

“This experience was the highlight of my career, as it demonstrated the recognition of quality services from an independent body that looks at all aspects of service delivery,’’ Leanne said.

“This has made me want to strive for more service excellence to create quality outcomes for the families and individuals we work with.

“Working at Centacare is a vocation and a privilege. I do not see this as a job but a real opportunity to deliver essential services to community.’’

Pauline said she was delighted to welcome Leanne to the Directors Office.

“I know she will be a significant support to me, the executives, the managers and all staff, and I am very grateful for that,’’ she said

“I wish Leanne all the best and look forward to working more closely with her.’’