ICN appoints New Zealander chief nurse as new CEO

Frances Hughes becomes new chief executive of the ICN which represents 130 nursing organisations worldwide

The International Council of Nurses (ICN) has appointed New Zealander nurse Frances Hughes as its new chief executive.


Dr Hughes is the chief nurse and midwifery officer for Queensland, Australia.

She will take up the new post in February and will work alongside the organisation’s president Judith Shamian.

Dr Hughes has previously worked as the chief nurse for New Zealand as well as a consultant at the World Health Organization.

Dr Shamian said: ‘We are delighted Frances has accepted our offer to be ICN’s next CEO and – together with the board – to lead the ICN, an organisation that has been serving nursing and health for more than 100 years.’

The new chief executive's previous experience also includes being the first professor of nursing at the University of Auckland and commandant colonel of the Royal New Zealand Army Nursing Corps.

Back in 2012 she studied a Fulbright senior scholarship in the USA and studied the lessons that health professionals could learn after a disaster. She was awarded the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to mental health in 2005.

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