The Women’s applauds career of leading women’s health advocate

Assoc Prof Les Reti
23 August 2019 | Gynaecology

Friends and colleagues gathered this week to recognise Associate Professor Les Reti’s significant contribution to women’s health as he retires after a career at the Royal Women’s Hospital of over 40 years.

A/Prof Reti is a leader in gynaecology and women’s health as both a clinician and educator – just last year he was honoured for his significant service in this field and was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia (AM).

His knowledge and compassion have seen him develop and champion one of Victoria's most successful and well-regarded programs for vulnerable women, CASA House at the Women’s. This became the model for CASA organisations across metropolitan and regional Victoria, providing support and counselling to women who have experienced sexual violence.

Les is known for his commitment to clinical excellence and has been instrumental in improving the quality and safety of patient care at the Women’s and across the health services sector.  

Chief Executive of the Women’s, Dr Sue Matthews, addressed the crowd at A/Prof Reti’s farewell event.

“We, at the Women’s, have been incredibly lucky to have had Les as a colleague for over 40 years.

“He is highly respected by the Women’s for his clinical expertise, his passion for women’s health and his dedicated leadership. He embodies everything that makes the Women’s a very special organisation.

“But his impact doesn’t stop at our hospital walls. Les has fulfilled many notable roles at the Women’s, the University of Melbourne, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, White Ribbon, RANZCOG and many other organisations. His life’s work has been recognised by RANZCOG (Distinguished Service Medal), the Victorian Public Healthcare Minister (2013 Lifetime Achievement award for health) and the Prime Minister (Member of the Order of Australia).

“I know I speak for all who have worked with Les when I say that it has been an honour to have him as a colleague. And as he steps down for retirement, he can be assured that his work and his impact in women’s health will be admired for many years to come.”

A/Prof Reti said he was touched by the recognition across the hospital.

“Over the years it has been a real privilege to learn from my mentors, my students and from my peers – and lots of wonderful patients. It’s also been a privilege to be able to contribute to this very special hospital. It’s been a terrific journey,” said A/Prof Reti.

“It’s the people who you work with that really makes any contribution possible. I’ve been lucky enough to have worked in some terrific teams over the decades. It’s resulted in many friendships which I still have to this day. For that, and for the opportunities along the way, I will always be thankful.”

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