Vale Hazel Goldacre OStJ

Press Release

St John WA has farewelled another extraordinary member of its family, with the passing of Hazel Goldacre OStJ, who was the first woman to reach the rank of Commissioner in Australia and was Western Australia’s next District Commissioner.  

Originally trained in the UK as a Registered Nurse, Hazel emigrated to Australia in 1969 and was a Clinical Instructor at the West Australian School of Nursing (WASON). 

After a brief return to the UK where she joined the St John Ambulance Brigade, in 1979 Hazel returned to WA taking up a position at Royal Perth Hospital and recommencing at WASON as a clinical instructor.   

On her return to WA she continued her St John service and was appointed Division Nursing Office to Morley Division.  

Highlights of her work included the preparation and adjudication of the national competitions at the 1987 Priory Conference in Perth and the establishment of a triage system for the Perth Royal Show.

In 1990, Hazel started teaching senior first aid at WASON, and established new training centres in Morley and Melville, which provided the training for all operations branch members to Advanced and Medallion level.  

The Operations Branch now have a well-established team of well-trained Registered Nurses and instructors. 

Hazel was directly admitted to the Order of St John as an Officer Sister in 1992. 

In June 1993 she was appointed District Commissioner for WA. 

Her time in the office saw an increased emphasis on cadet movement within St John WA and recruitment programs were very successful. 

The Operations Branch in Western Australia in 1997 was better equipped than any time previously. 

This period of Hazel’s career was a time of significant change, and she led several reforms that ensured Event Health Services’ viability.  

This included the creation of standardised training and advanced curriculum for all volunteers, centralised funding for volunteer units, and many other reforms.

Hazel retired in June 1997, although continued to serve St John WA.                                                                                                                                                                                                     

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