HerStory Archive

BARKER, Joanna

Also known as: Jo

Special Achievements:

Jo Barker was the first Australian President of World Federation of Occupational Therapists (1986-1990); the first occupational therapist in Australia to be awarded a Ph.D. (1988);  in 1983, she was the first woman board member of Perth's Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, and subsequently, first woman Chair; retired 2001, becoming Chair of Mandurah performing Arts Centre for 10 years and was awarded an honorary Life Membership; 2008: awarded Chamber of Commerce & Industry's Alcoa Business Excellence Award for Enterprising Women for the leadership role she played in supporting cultural change in Mandurah; from 2012-2015, she chaired the Independent Public Schools (IPS) board for John Tonkin College; from 2014 - 2017, she was the Ambassador for the Patrons Program at the Mandurah Performing Arts Centre; and in 2016, an advocate for Alzheimer's WA.

Additional Information:

Since 1969 Professor Barker worked within the mental health field, helping hospital outpatients to regain daily living skills.  She joined Curtain University in 1979 taking on the role of Head of Occupational Therapy and held this position until 1993.  Professor Barker throughout her career sought to fulfill her vision to have occupational therapy recognised as a field of major importance in the health sector.


Resources

  • Image - JC Medallist Jo Barker

    2012 John Curtin Medal Recipient


  • Image - Jo Barker

    Image courtesy of Jo Barker, NPWHF collection