Queensland's first ever Chief Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Officer has been welcomed to her historic role with a traditional smoking ceremony on Tuesday morning.
Haylene Grogan will lead the newly created Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Division, which will drive efforts to improve health equity and outcomes for First Nation Queenslanders.
Deputy Premier Jackie Trad welcomed Ms Grogan to the role.
"This is an historic occasion because Queensland has never before had a Chief Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Officer," Ms Trad said.
"This role will lead the development and delivery of Queensland Health's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander policies and programs - making real changes to close the health gap.
"She is an accomplished leader and a passionate advocate with a wealth of experience in the health sector."
Minister for Health Steven Miles said Ms Grogan would be a champion for Queensland's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workforce and will embark on a state-wide tour to understand the issues.
"I look forward to working with her and the new health division to improve health equity and outcomes for First Nation Queenslanders," Mr Miles said.
Ms Grogan was greeted with a traditional Welcome to Country, a smoking ceremony and performance by the Mabuyag Dance Group.
Ms Grogan is a a Kuku Yalanji and Tagalaka woman who began her health career with Wuchopperen Health Service in Cairns in 1982.
She has since held senior positions in the federal and state governments, including in Queensland Health, in service delivery, policy development, program implementation and project management.
Ms Grogan has held senior roles in representative bodies including the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Officials; National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Equality Council; Public Service Commissioner's Indigenous Reference Group; and Queensland Health Training Advisory Council to the Minister.
"My first priority will be to visit communities across the state to speak with local residents, health staff and other key stakeholders to understand the most urgent issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait people," Ms Grogan said.
"I want to make sure I hear from the people who rely on our services and my colleagues on the frontline who deliver health care."