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Susannah Rooney’s appointment as the Chief Operating Officer of the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute, Australia’s home of heart research, occurred just weeks after the World Health Organisation had declared the COVID-19 outbreak a global pandemic in March 2020. Navigating this new world presented many challenges and also highlighted the critical importance of medical research in the world.

Susannah is a qualified commercial lawyer, who has worked for Allens in Sydney and Clifford Chance in London and then worked in a series of combined legal and commercial senior executive roles with a strong strategic focus in the private sector.

Susannah’s unique set of skills in law and senior management serves the Institute well. As the COO, she has a commercial outlook on running a medical research institute that includes a solution-based approach to the management of competing priorities in a high-pressure environment to achieve the desired financial, strategic and research outcomes.

Susannah has oversight of all the operations teams, the Biocore teams, is the Institute’s Company Secretary, Risk Officer, Whistle-blower Protection Officer and sits on the Institute’s Commercialisation Committee and the Innovation Centre Leadership Committee. She also represents the Institute on numerous management committees with strategic and operational functions with our partners on the St Vincent’s Health Precinct.

Susannah embraces all the scientific aspects of the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute and the medical research sector. Her priority is to provide an environment that enables scientists to maximise their research potential while meeting their significant regulatory and administrative requirements and ensure that the Institute is positioned to achieve its strategic goals.

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