Gender Equity and Diversity

As a medical college dedicated to women’s health, it is clear we must ensure that our diverse membership is fairly represented within the RANZCOG leadership. This includes elected positions on the Board and Council, and appointed positions on RANZCOG committees.

The RANZCOG Board recognises that having an organisation that is composed of men and women with the relevant blend of differing skills, experience, perspectives, age and cultures leads to more opportunities for effective leadership, stronger decision-making and better outcomes for our patients.

In November 2018, the RANZCOG Board appointed a Gender Equity and Diversity Working Group (GEDWG), with the objectives of creating policies and enacting processes that would improve gender equity, inclusion and diversity within our College.

In 2019, the College released its Gender Equity and Diversity Report, providing the guidance and practical steps towards achieving this goal.

Progress and Initiatives

On 10 August 2020, GEDWG Chair Dr Gillian Gibson updated members and trainees on the work to improve gender equity, inclusion and diversity.

Read the update here and watch Dr Gibson’s video message below:

Gender Equity from RANZCOG on Vimeo.


Working Group Members

You can meet the Gender Equity and Diversity Working Group Members below:

Dr Gillian Gibson – Chair

Dr Gillian Gibson is a generalist obstetrician and gynaecologist at Auckland District Health Board (ADHB) and has a private gynaecology practice. Her special interest is sexual and reproductive health. She is Clinical Director for the Auckland Regional Gynaecology Day Service, which includes provision of abortion care.

A Fellow since 1997, Gillian has for several years been involved with College work. She was elected onto the RANZCOG Board in 2018, having been a New Zealand representative on the 9th and 10th RANZCOG Councils 2014–2018, a member of the O&G Magazine Editorial Advisory Group 2011–2018, and a New Zealand Committee member 2005–2011 including a two year term as Chair.

Dr Nisha Khot – Deputy Chair

Dr Nisha Khot is the Clinical Director of Obstetrics at Djerriwarrh Health Service in Victoria. She trained in India and the UK before moving to Australia. She is currently one of four Victorian RANZCOG Councillors and is a member of the Women’s Health and SIMG committees. She is Chair of the Maternity e-Handbook Subcommittee and a member of the Insight Committee of Safer Care Victoria.

Her experience across three countries and three different cultures and health systems has led her to question the lack of gender equity in leadership positions. Along with gender equity, Nisha is also passionate about achieving diverse representation in all medical leadership positions.

Dr Alicia Mulligan

Biography TBC

Dr Alison Fung

Dr Alison Fung is a maternal fetal medicine (MFM) subspecialist at the Mercy Hospital for Women. She has been a Victorian Councillor on the RANZCOG College Council since 2016, is the deputy chair for the MFM subspeciality committee, and previously chaired the Victorian Regional Committee for 6 years from 2012–2017. 

Ali is a surgical member of the Victorian Fetal Therapy Service that offers advanced fetoscopic procedures. She also works as a consultant for PIPER at the RCH.


Prof Caroline de Costa

Professor Caroline de Costa is professor of obstetrics and gynaecology at James Cook University Cairns. She studied medicine in Dublin, graduating in 1973, and later undertook her specialist training in Ireland, the UK and Papua-New Guinea. She was has a particular interest in the health of Indigenous and immigrant women.

Caroline has been a Fellow of RACOG, and later RANZCOG, since 1981. She has been a member of College committees since 1983, and represented the College on various NSW, Queensland and national committees since 1982, including the NSW Maternal and Perinatal Mortality Committees 1982–1999. She was part of the Editorial Committee of O&G Magazine 2003–2013, and member and then Chair of the RANZCOG Research Foundation 2008–2013. Caroline is currently Editor-in-Chief of ANZJOG, Honorary Curator of the College Collection, and a member of the Sexual and Reproductive Health and Women’s Health Committees of RANZCOG, as well as being a member of the Gender Equity and Diversity Working Group.

Dr Fiona Langdon

Dr Fiona Langdon is a newly graduated private obstetrician and gynaecologist based in Perth. She is the immediate past Chair of the RANZCOG Trainees’ Committee and sat on the immediate past RANZCOG Council. Fiona is a mother of two boys, both born during her FRANZCOG training. She is a fierce supporter of trainees’ welfare and keen to develop strategies to facilitate and support women and parents in our trainee and specialist workforce. She is excited to be part of this working group and part of a College that is leading the way in gender equality.

Dr Helena Obermair

Dr Helena Obermair is a resident medical officer at Liverpool Hospital in South-West Sydney. She completed her MD at the University of Notre Dame in Sydney and her Masters of Public Health at the University of Sydney. She has a strong interest in women’s health and advocating for women’s rights and equality.

Dr Judith Gardiner

Biography TBC

Dr Kirsten Connan

Dr Kirsten Connan has training and specialist experience in rural, regional and international locations. She underwent tertiary training and specialist practice at the Royal Women’s Hospital (Melbourne) and specialist practice at both the Royal Darwin and Royal Hobart Hospitals. She currently practises as the lead specialist obstetrician, gynaecologist, and sonologist in a multi-disciplinary private practice (TasOGS) in Tasmania, with a strong interest in pelvic pain, endometriosis and laparoscopic surgery. In 2016 Dr Connan was awarded the Telstra Women’s Business Award (Entrepreneurial) for her business leadership in this practice.

Dr Connan’s passion for gender equity and leadership development led her to being awarded a Master of Clinical Teaching from the University of Melbourne for her thesis titled “Gender and Leadership in O&G in Australia and New Zealand”. This thesis included RANZCOG members' views on leadership, gender bias and quotas use, and has provided invaluable data to support the formation of this committee.  

Dr Leigh Shenton Duncan

Biography TBC

Dr Marilla Druitt

Dr Marilla Druitt is an obstetrician and gynaecologist in the regional centre of Geelong in Victoria. She works in private and public and is a Clinical Senior lecturer at Deakin University. She has a special interest in Pelvic Pain after a laparoscopy fellowship, was on the MBS review committee for Pain Management and on the International Liaison Committee for the International Pelvic Pain Society. Marilla is a Victorian representative on RANZCOG Council with the O&G Magazine Committee and Engagement Committee. She also helped design the #shegivesbirthyougiveblood campaign for the Australian Red Cross Blood Service. 

Marilla has always been interested in gender equity and will be part of RANZCOG working toward an intersectional approach.

Dr Marilyn Clarke

Dr Marilyn Clarke is a proud Worimi woman from Port Stephens area north of Newcastle. She has practised as an obstetrician and gynaecologist on the north coast of NSW since she gained her Fellowship in 2007. She enjoys all aspects of work as a Provincial Fellow and is currently working in private practice as well as in the public hospital at Coffs Harbour and Grafton. She chairs the RANZCOG Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Women’s Health Committee and is passionate about social equity issues including gender, Indigenous and rural regions.

Dr Rachael Hickinbotham

Dr Rachael Hickinbotham is an obstetrician and gynaecologist who is based in Sydney. Her career in healthcare spans over 20 years. Before studying medicine, she was an Intensive Care Nurse. As well as maintaining a busy obstetrics practice, she holds a clinical lecturer position at the University of Sydney and is an active member of the RANZCOG NSW Regional Committee. Rachael believes that our profession has a responsibility to start talking about gender equity and also to be agents of change. She is proud that our College is one of the first to take on this important challenge and is excited to be a part of such a dynamic team.

Dr Rebecca Mackenzie-Proctor

Biography TBC

A/Prof Rosalie Grivell

A/Prof Rosalie Grivell is a clinical academic and Maternal-Fetal Medicine subspecialist. She has held several positions in RANZCOG for the past 10 years and is passionate about the critical importance of providing broad and high-quality training to our future specialists. She firmly believes that as the College for women’s health, RANZCOG should be at the forefront of advocating for and providing equity for women in all domains of life, including leadership.

Prof Steve Robson – RANZCOG Immediate Past President

Prof Steve Robson is immediate Past-President of RANZCOG and has been a member of Council and the College Board for 13 years. He is passionate about equity and has been a very public champion for gender issues across his entire professional career. He founded the maternal health charity Send Hope Not Flowers and was inaugural Chair of the Migrant and Refugee Women's Health Partnership.

Dr Talat Uppal

Dr Talat Uppal is a Sydney-based obstetrician and gynaecologist. She is a Clinical Senior Lecturer in obstetrics and gynaecology at Northern Medical School, University of Sydney; and a Fellow of the Australian Association for Quality in Health Care and the Australasian College of Health Service Management. In College governance matters, Talat is past Chair of the NSW State Reference Committee and the NSW RANZCOG Education Subcommittee; as well as Clinical Co-Coordinator of Diploma (DRANZCOG) OSCE examination. She received the RANZCOG conspicuous service medal in 2018.

Talat is fluent in three languages and has much overseas exposure with volunteer teaching work. She believes that to achieve gender equity we need to embrace diversity at all levels; making untapped potential visible. A topic close to her heart, she is proud to be part of RANZCOG’s vision to be a proactive agent of good change. It is great that this is such a topical issue now. ‘Better tomorrows’ start with having a discussion today.

Dr Vijay Roach – RANZCOG President

Dr Vijay Roach is a Visiting Medical Officer in obstetrics and gynaecology in both public and private practice in Sydney. His first role with the College was as Chair of the NSW Training and Accreditation Committee 20 years ago, a position that he held for nine years. He has been Chair of several College Committees, including the Training and Accreditation Committee and Continuing Professional Development Committee.

Vijay is the former Chair of the Gidget Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation promoting the importance of emotional wellbeing among expectant and new parents. Vijay was elected President in 2018, having previously served three terms on the RANZCOG Board.


RANZCOG Gender Equity and Diversity Report

Download the RANZCOG Gender Equity and Diversity Report

More information

Please contact:

Sabrina Hanna, Manager, Office of the President and CEO
Phone: +61 3 9412 2983

Bec McPhee, Executive Officer, Office of the President and CEO
Phone: +61 3 9412 2905



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