November 3, 2017
December 1, 2017
February 2, 2018
March 2, 2018
April 6, 2018
May 4, 2018
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Each event brings together a diverse group of mentors from industries where they set a senior precedent and are established role models. Our mentors can choose to be involved in the series as a one-time commitment or as a regular mentor. Recognising the busy, and often travelling life of our mentors, mentor names are not disclosed prior to each event and there is no obligation to share contact information outside of our events.
Jemma Wong is a strategic marketer, brand storyteller and life-learner. Leading with an audience-first purpose, disruptive spirit and always designing for growth, she has ten years of specialist marketing experience within the Australian Entertainment and Non-Profit industry working for City of Sydney, Sydney Opera House, Cricket Australia, The Australian Ballet and now the Australian Football League. In 2016 she led the marketing and audience strategy for AFL Women’s, building brand change for the sport.
In 2017 Jemma won the MUMBRELLA Under 30 Achiever of the Year Award and in 2015 the Cannes Young Lion Award for Marketing, competing internationally amongst the top marketers around the world in France.
She is the creator of the community, Girls Who Brand, and is passionate about diversity within marketing and giving young women more opportunities to empower narratives in marketing, content and creative
Libby Owens is the CEO of Champion Data, formerly holding roles at Cricket Australia and the Australian Communications and Media Authority. Keen interest in Technology, Media and Sport and the
application of Leadership and Strategy within these sectors. Advocate for STEM and women’s advocacy in this area.emma Wong is a strategic marketer, brand storyteller and life-learner. Leading with an audience-first purpose, disruptive spirit and always designing for growth, she has ten years of specialist marketing experience within the Australian Entertainment and Non-Profit industry working for City of Sydney, Sydney Opera House, Cricket Australia, The Australian Ballet and now the Australian Football League.
For over 25 years, Bec Brideson has made the recognition of women’s influence and financial power her personal mission. One of advertising’s most lauded and youngest female Creative Directors, Bec started her own agency to reset the standard for marketing to women. Now she is consulting directly with clients on bringing the innovative female lens across the broader spectrum of business. She has just written her first book Blind Spots on the new female economy.
Kate Morris is the Founder and CEO of Adore Beauty. From its inception in Kate’s garage in 1999, Adore Beauty is now Australia’s leading online beauty store, winning multiple awards and picking up an investment from retail giant Woolworths in 2014. Kate is a two-time winner at the Telstra Business Women’s Awards, and in 2017 was the first woman to receive the Industry Recognition Award for e-commerce at the StarTrack ORIAs. Kate is a passionate advocate for gender diversity in leadership.
Katherine Rau is an innovative People & Culture thought leader renowned for delivering solutions to complex challenges particularly around attracting, scaling, and retaining talent in digital/tech startups undergoing rapid growth.
Katherine’s career includes roles with some of Australia’s most exciting companies – People Strategy Director at Unlockd and GM Human Resources and Recruitment at Catch Group including websites during her tenure Catchoftheday, Scoopon, Vinomofo, and Eatnow). She has also worked for prominent recruitment agencies including Michael Page and
With a combined passion for HR Tech and a personal mission to solve the current hiring and referencing/validation challenges faced by both companies and candidates (experienced first-hand for many years),
Katherine and her husband Aaron Rau founded the social sourcing platform Endorser. After 6 months of operation Endorser merged with BetterView to build a reputation platform powered by an algorithm where companies can see beyond the resume and look at meaningful endorsement data on a candidate upfront in the hiring process.
Karen Mahlab been an innovator in opening the channels of connection between communities, not-for-profit organisations, volunteers, philanthropy and business. She is a passionate believer in the power of community and connection
She established Pro Bono Australia in 1999 as a for-purpose business. Since then it has developed into the major national “hub for the common Good”, with close to one million Australians who want to volunteer, give, get a job or the latest news and information about Australia’s civil society using Pro Bono Australias services. Pro Bono Australia became a registered BCorp in 2014.
Karen sits on a wide variety of private and not for profit boards and committees.
Sheryl Thai started her career in the IT&T industry. During the economic downturn her IT Consultant role was made redundant and as a result she sought out to achieve her dream of owning her own cupcake business and left the IT industry to do so. Starting modestly in September 2009, she started her online cupcake business and baked at home with little capital. The business started to flourish as name of “Cupcake Central” spread through word of mouth and orders starting flowing through.
As demand increased, the decision to open up her first cupcake store became imminent and as a joint venture with her business partner, Thin Neu, Cupcake Central’s first storefront in Hawthorn opened their doors in August 2010.
Over the last 5 years, Cupcake Central has grown to four stores around Melbourne with a fifth store scheduled to open in August 2016. With a social media following of over 70k people and strong customer base, Cupcake Central continues to grow slowly but steadily year on year. Sheryl has also won the Entrepreneur of the Year 2013 award by the Australian Startup Awards. She was also a finalist for the Telstra Business Women’s Award, entrepreneur category in 2016.
Since December 2015, Sheryl has taken onboard the role as CEO of the League of Extraordinary Women, an organisation she co-founded in 2011. The League has launched in 9 cities across Australia and in July/Aug 2016 has launced in 4 cities in the United States. The League is currently raising seed funding to scale their web platform worldwide.
As Executive General Manager, Business Direct and Small Business, Leigh O’Neill leads a team of more than 900 people comprising direct and digital business customer services – including specialised services such as Transactional Banking, Foreign Exchange and Trade Finance – and relationship management for NAB Small Business customers.
Leigh has more than 15 years’ experience in financial services across the UK, US and Australia, most recently holding the position of Executive General Manager, Micro and Small Business at NAB. In this role she established the NAB Small Business Customer Advocacy Council, a group of industry influencers, representatives and business owners who provide strategic advice on NAB’s small business customer strategy and issues facing business customers.
Prior to holding the role of Executive General Manager, Business Direct and Small Business, Leigh was General Manager, NAB Private Wealth Victoria; leading the team to provide highly personalised wealth solutions to high net worth clients.
Leigh is a strong advocate for corporate responsibility and has been a proponent for many of NAB’s programs around diversity and financial empowerment for women. Passionate about the arts, she is currently Chair of contemporary dance company Chunky Move and a Director on Melbourne Theatre Company’s Foundation Board. She is also a keen runner and has completed several marathons.
Leigh holds a Bachelor of Science (Hons) from Nottingham University, Financial Planning Certificates and an Australian Diploma of Financial Services. She is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Adriana Colaneri is National Managing Director of The Story Lab Australia. She is an outcomes focused communication specialist with over 20 years’ experience in the industry working in Australia’s top agencies with leading clients and brands. She is a progressive and creative thinker who can combine this skill with analytical and commercial acumen. Her expertise includes team leadership, marketing and content strategy, media-led content partnerships, B2B marketing and social media strategy. Her experience spans a diverse portfolio of FMCG, Retail & Fashion, Toys & Gaming, Finance, Beauty and Luxury categories. International and Australian clients include; Schweppes, Cadbury, L’Oreal, Garnier, Myer, Just Group, Longines, Omega, Mattel and Bet365. Adriana is a passionate advocate of gender diversity and inclusion at Dentsu Aegis Network and in the wider industry.
Experienced Chair with a demonstrated history of working in the hospital & health care industry. Strong business development professional skilled in Public Speaking, patient centred care, healthcare culture change, arts in health and patient safety.
Experienced Chair with a demonstrated history of working in the hospital & health care industry. Strong business development professional skilled in Public Speaking, patient centred care, healthcare culture change, arts in health and patient safety.
Annette is Global Growth Markets Leader and Asia Pacific Accounts Leader at EY. She is a member of EY’s Asia Pacific Executive and Global Practice Group (comprising EY’s top 100 senior leaders). With more than 30 years professional and commercial experience, her executive career has included a range of senior roles with EY and with the International Accounting Standards Board. She has extensive local and international experience in designing and implementing large, complex and disruptive transformations. Annette is also passionate about empowering women and supporting entrepreneurship. In 2012 she co-founded with Carol Schwartz and Susan Oliver Australia’s first seed capital organisation, Scale Investors, focused on equipping women as investors. Scale provides these investors with education and deal flow opportunities to invest in early-stage, female-led businesses. It is rapidly empowering women entrepreneurs and the women who invest in them. She also established in 2015 the EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women™ program, Asia Pacific. This year-long program supports women entrepreneurs from across Asia Pacific to think big and globally scale their businesses to their full potential.
Stephanie Bansemer-Brown worked in the television and entertainment industry for over 27 years and honed her marketing and communication skills with a 15 year tenure as Network Ten Melbourne’s Head of Marketing and Publicity where she worked with some of Australia’s biggest stars and launched programs such as The Panel, The Secret Life of Us, Australian Idol, MasterChef, Offspring and The Project.Diagnosed with Stage 3 bowel cancer in 2012, Stephanie recalibrated her life and is now a strategic marketing and communications consultant working with organisations such as the AFL, Fremantle media and ARN. Giving back and making real social change is a key priority for Stephanie and she is currently a director on the board of the Cancer Council of Australia. She is passionate about raising much needed awareness for bowel cancer and is both an Ambassador for Bowel Cancer Australia as well as providing strategic communications support to the organisation.
Stephanie’s philosophy is all about, “Living Life NOW”, “Filling Your Bucket” and ironically “Getting Sh#* Done” with the ultimate goal of achieving happiness for you and those around you.
Dr Amantha Imber is an innovation psychologist, best-selling author, and founder of Australia’s leading innovation consultancy Inventium. Inventium has been recognised as one of Australia’s fastest growing companies in the BRW Fast 100 list in both 2015 and 2016, and was also awarded the BRW Client Choice Award for Best Management Consultancy in Australia. In 2016, Amantha was inducted into the Australian Business Women’s Hall of Fame. With a PhD in organisational psychology, Amantha has helped companies such as Google, Coca-Cola, Disney, LEGO, Red Bull, American Express, Virgin Australia, Commonwealth Bank and many others innovate more successfully. Amantha was a finalist in the 2015 Telstra Business Women of the Year awards.
Amantha is the co-creator of the Australian Financial Review’s Most Innovative Companies list, an annual list that Inventium compiles, ranking Australia’s top innovators. Her thoughts have appeared in Harvard Business Review, The Huffington Post, Forbes, and Fast Company and she is the author of two best-selling books: “The Creativity Formula” and “The Innovation Formula”.
Cyan Ta’eed is the Founder of Hey Tiger and the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Envato. Cyan began her career as a graphic designer and in 2006 founded Envato out of her parent’s garage. Envato is a creative eco-system, encompassing the largest digital marketplace in the world. Its 7 million members buy and sell digital stock and services, and Envato has delivered over $500 million dollars of earnings to their community of creatives so far. Cyan was 2015 Telstra Victorian Business Woman of the Year, Australian Financial Review’s 2016 100 Women of Influence Enterprise Winner, and Envato was awarded Job Advisor’s Coolest Company for Diversity in 2016.
Cyan has recently founded Hey Tiger, a social enterprise chocolate company that creates delicious and stylish chocolate that benefits cocoa farming communities in West Africa. She is also the founder of New Day Box, an initiative that mobilises the community to make boxes of skincare and cosmetics for women in domestic violence crisis accommodation. Last year New Day Box distributed over 2,000 boxes to women around Victoria.
Amanda joined PwC (Australia) as the Director of Human Capital for the Consulting business after 4 years with the Richmond Football Club as the General Manager – People, Culture & Performance. Prior to her time in the AFL, she held a number of senior positions at leading corporate organisations such as Medibank, Australia Post, National Australia Bank and Telstra. She is a highly accomplished organisational psychologist and people development professional with significant experience in employee engagement, organisational culture and transformational change. She is also a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Meena Thuraisingham is Founder and Principal of BoardQ, a board-level advisory practice, and TalentInvest, a consultancy that works with clients to strengthen their leadership, succession and talent strategies and practices. She currently advises companies in Australia, UK and Asia on board effectiveness, top team performance, succession and culture. A qualified organisational psychologist, Meena’s extensive corporate and business experience gives her a deep understanding of what drives both personal and organisational change.
Meena has more than 30 years’ experience working at executive and board level with major local and global organisations across multiple sectors including resources, financial services, retail, insurance and professional services. She has advised on and led significant business transformation projects including providing strategic support for restructures, acquisitions and divestments and organisational renewal. A skilled facilitator and coach, she serves on the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) director coaching panel and on the executive coaching panels of several global companies.
Meena’s doctoral research in the emerging field of behavioural governance focused on the impact of board dynamic on decision-making and director effectiveness. She has also published two books on decision-making and executive derailment.
Mim Bartlett is an award-winning leadership coach turned social innovator, commentator and advocate for a new style of work-life integration.
A 2015 Financial Review Westpac 100 Women of Influence winner, her work focuses on connecting people, ideas and resources that can lead to personal fulfilment and social change in today’s world.
Mim challenges audiences to define their unique passion or intersection, maximise their potential and generate positive change for themselves, their work, their families and the communities they serve. A sought-after coach, human rights champion and advocate for gender equality, Mim is a persuasive role model who can captivate and motivate any audience. Her passion and ambition for leading an authentic life at work, and in all parts of her life, is contagious.
Holly Ransom is the CEO of Emergent, a company specialising in disruptive strategy and building the capacity of leaders to execute change. Emergent, has worked with the likes of Microsoft, Virgin, INPEX, Europcar, KPMG, & the AIS, as well as local, state and federal government departments globally.
Holly is an experienced non-executive director across the private, government and non-profit sectors, in a statutory and advisory board capacity. In 2014, the Australian Prime Minister appointed Holly to Chair the G20 Youth Summit, resulting in the first summit to secure its policy demands from G20 leaders. In 2016, Holly became the youngest ever woman appointed to the board of an AFL football club with her appointment as a Director of Port Adelaide Football Club and was also asked by the AFL to serve on their advisory Board for the launch of the AFL Women’s League.
Her corporate career has involved working as Chief of Staff to NAB Wealth CEO Andrew Hagger and for Rio Tinto CEO Sam Walsh, giving her a strong background in complex change strategy, public affairs and risk management, government and stakeholder engagement, and innovation and technology driven performance improvement.
Holly has presented across 6 continents, including delivering a Peace Charter to the Dalai Lama. She has featured on ABC’s ‘Q&A’, Channel 7 News & Channel 10’s ‘The Project’, and is renowned for her commentary on intergenerational economic and social issues. A top-ten age group finisher in her most recent Ironman Endurance Triathlon, in 2016 Holly was listed by Sir Richard Branson as one of his dream dinner guests.
Jo joined SEEK in January 2016 as Director Client Services for the Australian and New Zealand business, and is a key member of the SEEK leadership team.
Prior to SEEK, Jo spent 16 years with IBM where she held leadership roles across strategy, client relationship teams, operations and marketing, across Australia, New Zealand and Asia Pacific. Jo was part of the IBM Australia board, reporting to the CEO and was also a member of the IBM diversity council. Jo’s last role before leaving IBM was Director of Mid Market and Digital.
Prior to IBM, Jo held positions across marketing and client services at Big W, Sony and Cartwright Williams (now part of Leo Burnett).
At SEEK, Jo’s current role is to lead the 200+ client sales and service team to solve hirers’ problems across the human capital marketplace. Jo manages the ANZ P&L and leads business development, account management, customer service, client training and operations. Jo is passionate about solving client business problems and all areas of digital transformation and technology.
Jo holds a Bachelor of Applied Science from University of Western Sydney, and recently completed the Executive Development Programme at The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania as one of two recipients of the 2017 Chief Executive Women scholarships. Jo is also a director on the Victorian Board of the Starlight Children’s Foundation. Jo currently lives in Melbourne, is married with four children and enjoys spending time with family and friends.
Claire commenced work at Arts Centre Melbourne as Chief Executive Officer in November 2014.
Since that time she has steered the organisation through a major restructure to better position the organisation for the future and to assist with its key role as a leader in the cultural precinct and a major contributor to Victoria’s creative economy.
She was instigative in the creation of The Role You Play, the key guideline for organisational success through its people and its business processes.
Several projects embracing important programming and people initiatives have evolved under Claire’s tenure. These include: the ground-breaking Asia Pacific Triennial of Performing Arts (Asia TOPA), delivered in collaboration with more than 30 Victorian organisations from across the cultural sector; the development of the Australian Music Vault, which will bring together the expertise of Arts Centre Melbourne and the contemporary music industry to deliver a permanent free and dynamic exhibition supported by substantial digital and education programs; and the establishment of the Arts Welling Collective, a year-long pilot project which promotes strong individual wellbeing for those who work in the arts sector, currently engaging more than 120 organisations from across victoria.
Claire is a Member of Chief Executive Women – the pre-eminent organisation representing Australia’s most senior women leaders from the corporate, public service, academic and not-for-profit sectors, and she is also on the Executive Council of Live Performance Australia (LPA), the national peak body formed to ensure the long term sustainability of the Australian live performance industry.
Claire is on the Board of The Pinnacle Foundation, established to provide scholarships and mentoring support to lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer and intersex students (aged 16 – 24) who are marginalised or disadvantaged.
She is also a member of the Federal Government’s Australia–Singapore Arts Group.
Kate has over 20 years marketing & advertising experience working locally and in the UK with Facebook, Microsoft Advertising and client side for Sensis, McDonalds and Tabcorp. She leads the ANZ Retail & QSR business at Facebook.
Kate’s passion lies in working with retail clients to understand how the consumer shift to mobile and smart use of data can transform business.
Kate believes Australian business needs to move fast and focus relentlessly on understanding and improving the end to end journey of their customers, or they will not remain competitive.
Kate did not grow up dreaming of working for Facebook, mainly by virtue of the fact it was not even close to existing. Beginning her working life as an accountant, her career path shows the power of remaining open, flexible and being expert in feeling uncomfortable most of the time!
Dale Fisher is Chief Executive of the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, Australia’s only public hospital solely dedicated to cancer treatment, research and education and home to Australia’s largest cancer research program.
Dale led the relocation of Peter Mac in East Melbourne to its new home in Parkville in 2016, as part of the $1.1 billion Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre Project.
Prior to joining Peter Mac, Dale was Chief Executive of The Royal Women’s Hospital for nine years. The Women’s is Australia’s first and largest specialist hospital dedicated to improving the health of all women and newborns. As a specialist hospital, the Women’s is central to the Victorian health system, particularly with respect to advocating for women’s health and leading innovation for the health and wellbeing of women and newborns.
Dale also led the redevelopment and relocation of the Royal Women’s Hospital and Frances Perry Private Hospital from Carlton to Parkville in 2008, the first Public Private Project for a tertiary hospital in the country.
In recognition of her achievements in leadership and promoting excellence in women’s health to the Victorian community, Dale was inducted into the Victorian Honour Roll of Women in 2011 as part of the centenary celebrations for International Women’s Day.
With a passion for innovation and an insatiable curiosity about life, Sarah is a creative curator and an energetic entrepreneur – responsible for igniting awe, wonder, conversation and connection amongst thousands of Australian professionals each year. After a bout of anxiety and a suspected mini stroke, Sarah discovered meditation and mindfulness, and has been experimenting with ways to tap her brain’s capacity and capability for wellness, creativity and productivity since. Sarah worked at Commonwealth Bank for over seven years, during which she dreamt up the vision for Wired for Wonder, Australia’s most innovative event series and worked as one of the first Intrapreneurs in the business. She recently founded The Wonder Tribe, a creative consultancy to work with big businesses to unleash innovative thinking, wonder and curiosity at scale.
Sarah is also founder of Sienna Baby, a baby shoe company inspired by her incredible girls, is an advocate for equality, radical inclusion and flexible working and has a Bachelor of Business from Monash University. She is
a qualified Neuro- linguistic programming practitioner, Design Thinker, Reiki Master and hypnotherapist. She is writing her first book ‘The Wonder Mindset’ and speaks around Australia on innovation, creativity, mindfulness, business, family, wonder, productivity, the future of work and the wonder mindset.ate has over 20 years marketing & advertising experience working locally and in the UK with Facebook, Microsoft Advertising and client side for Sensis, McDonalds and Tabcorp. She leads the ANZ Retail & QSR business at Facebook.