Friday, 23 February 2024
OIU News is delighted to announce that David Ballhausen (OR80) has taken over the role of CEO at CANA this February. David has been involved with Cana for well over 25 years as a volunteer and, more recently, a Board member. He is a seasoned NFP leader with a background in leadership roles with organisations such as The Smith Family, Life Education Australia, and the Disability and Community Housing sector. In recent times, he was the inaugural CEO of Street Side Medics.  

Speaking recently to OIU News, David remembers his first visit to Cana with some affection.  "I was not aware at all of Cana or the work they did. I said to myself, why me? Why an Old Boy contact would tap me on the shoulder and say, "Come and meet these two people and find out more about Cana". I was captivated by what they did when I met them. I feel I have come full circle after all these years, since that day I met Sister Anne Jordan and Father Brian Stoney."

The OIU has of course been involved with Cana for over 40 years.  A Riverview mother, Tori Taranto, who was very involved with Sister Anne in the early days in Sydney, moved to Perth with her family where they ultimately set up a Cana outpost.

David spoke of this notion of "what's in it for me", for young people these days. Even more so today. "They're searching for real meaning in their work and their life. You don't just leave Cana after you have experienced the people and their good works. Once you join the community, you're there for life."

We are sure David's experience and leadership will underpin Cana’s continued progression and reputation as an organisation that creates inclusive communities and nurtures dignity, hope and belonging for those most in need. 

On behalf of the OIU, we congratulate David on his appointment and wish him well in the role.