Beverley was born in Casino, New South Wales. She graduated from the local high school second in the state in physics and chemistry, and studied medicine at the University of Sydney, living at Women’s College for six years. Beverley worked as a general practitioner before becoming a Fellow of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists. She completed her MD at the University of Sydney in 1977.

Beverley was a courageous and passionate leader who was curious about people, medicine and systems of health. She inspired and encouraged those working in mental health, and was a role model for female professionals, with no shortage of time or energy in supporting those aspiring to improve the lives of people affected by trauma or struggling with mental illness.

Beverley was foundation Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Newcastle from 1977 to 1986, Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Queensland from 1987 to 1995, Director of Mental Health for NSW from 1996 to 2005, Professor of Population Health and Disasters at Western Sydney University from 2005 to 2015, and Professor of Psychiatry and Addiction Medicine at the Australian National University from 2006 to 2017. She was Emeritus Professor at the University of Queensland and Western Sydney University. Beverley received numerous awards for services to mental health, including a Member of the Order of Australia in 1984.

A constant and extensive researcher, Beverley contributed broadly to mental health research for children and adolescents, women, war veterans, trauma-affected individuals and populations, disaster-affected communities, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, HIV-affected people and the bereaved, among many others. She transcended conventions and current practices, bravely considering and bringing to fruition new systems and standards nationally and internationally.

Beverley was dedicated to her family, who describe her as having a wicked twinkle reflecting an intelligence and curiosity that played out in her ability to take on the challenges of the world. She was a compassionate friend and colleague, who leaves a substantial legacy for others to progress.

Source: Medical Journal of Australia, with thanks to Cassandra Keller

Vale 21 September 2018

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