Join us (virtually) in Canberra!

Please note, all scheduled walks will now take place online. Physical walks will return once government restrictions are lifted.

You have just taken a huge step towards addressing your career challenges by learning from Australia’s most influential business women – so trust us when we say you’re in good hands!


On the day you will be grouped with a mentor and one other mentee in a private online meeting room. You will then talk for an hour discussing your career questions as a small group.


Each mentee must come with a question that they’d like to discuss with their mentor. You’ll be asked to submit this when you book your ticket.


If you ‘re not sure what to ask, here’s some ideas:

What makes a great leader?
I’m a start-up. How do I take my business to the next level?
I want to change my career. What steps should I take?
How do I ask for a pay increase?


Just know, there is no issue too big or too small. You can come to talk about anything!


If you have already registered as a mentee, please click the below

Please note we are unable to take full time students as mentees

2020 Walk Dates

COVID-19 UPDATE: Due to national health guidelines, all Mentor Walks will be virtual until further notice.

14 February 2020
6 March 2020
29 April 2020
15 July 2020
16 September 2020
23 October 2020
2 December 2020

Mentor Walks Canberra is presented in partnership with

Our Canberra Mentors

Our mentors are senior executives, thought leaders, business owners, boundary pushers and high achievers at the top of their field.

Each event brings together a group of mentors from diverse industries where they are already established role models. Our mentors can choose to be involved in this event as a one-time commitment or on a regular basis.

We recognise that our mentors lead very busy lives, which is why their names are not disclosed prior to each event and there is no obligation to share contact information outside of Mentor Walks.

Susan Proctor
Founder, Proctor Legal

Susan Proctor is a commercial property lawyer and company director with over 20 years experience. Throughout this time Susan has held roles as Managing Partner, Non executive Director on a number of Government Boards and as founder of her own boutique law practice.

Susan sits on a number of boards and is a fellow of the institute of company directors. Susan is an accredited specialist property lawyer and regularly speaks on issues relating to governance and management structures within layered communities.

Gai Brodtmann MP
Shadow Assistant Minister for Cyber Security and Defence

Gai Brodtmann has extensive experience in the public, private and community sectors. She was elected the Member for Canberra in August 2010, and was re-elected in both 2013 and 2016.

She ran her own small business for ten years and therefore understands the challenges faced by small business owners. Prior to this, she was a federal public servant, primarily with Foreign Affairs and Trade and Attorney-General’s.

Gai has worked on a range of international and national issues, from Indigenous youth development and climate change, to defence capability, tax and foreign policy.

As a volunteer director on the board of ‘The Gift of Life’ and ‘Our Wellness’, Gai has helped to lift the profile of organ donation and has raised funds for better health services in Canberra. She is a former director and audit committee member of the Cultural Facilities Corporation and ACTTAB, and a former director of the National Press Club.

She is the founding Co-Chair of the Parliamentary Friends of Small Business, Parliamentary Friends of Defence and Parliamentary Friends of Endometriosis groups. She is also the founding Chair of the Small Business Caucus Committee, and founder of ACT Labor For Small Business.

Leanne Joyce
Head of Government Relations, Australian Red Cross

Leanne Joyce is the Head of Government Relations with Australian Red Cross, where she is responsible for public policy and government relations.

She has over 25 years’ experience across the government, corporate, and not-for-profit sectors in executive management, government affairs, media relations and issues management, and stakeholder relations.

Prior to joining Red Cross, Leanne was consulting in government relations and external affairs, and was a leading member of the International Association of Business Communicators both in Canberra and across the Asia Pacific region. Most recently Leanne served on the Mentoring Taskforce for communications professionals around the world.

Leanne’s previous experience includes Marketing and Communications Director for Austrade and prior to that, she was NSW Trade and Investment, Corporate and Government Affairs for Telstra, similar roles in Tax and Health, and was CEO of the Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations. Leanne has qualifications in Public Policy, Professional Writing and has studied towards an MBA.

Dr Stephanie Fahey
CEO,  Austrade

Dr Stephanie Fahey is the Chief Executive Officer of Austrade, the Australian Government agency responsible for promoting trade, investment and international education, and tourism policy, programs and research.

She has over 30 years’ experience both as an academic and executive working in Australia and overseas.

Previously she was EY’s lead Partner for education in the Oceania region, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Global Engagement) at Monash University, and Director of the University of Sydney’s Research Institute for Asia and the Pacific. Stephanie brings an international perspective to her work and a wealth of experience across business and academia.

She’s Austrade’s first female CEO, and has served on the Australia China Business Council, the Australia China Council, the NSW International Education Advisory Board, the Board of Canberra Institute of Technology, the Foreign Affairs Council and the Australia Korean Foundation. She was also previously Vice President of the European Australian Business Council.

Stephanie holds a PhD from the Australian National University and BA (Hons) from the University of Sydney. She speaks Melanesian Pidgin. She was inducted as a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors in 2012.

Nadine White
Director, Human Resources, ANU

Nadine is an accomplished senior HR Director with 20+ years of experience in large complex organisations. Nadine is experienced in leading and managing high performing, diverse teams, projects and budgets. Nadine is also an experienced Company Director and Deputy Chair in both public companies and not for profit organisations. She is professionally qualified as Company Director with the AICD and holds qualifications in business and law and a PhD.

Catherine Carter
Director, Catherine Carter Consulting

Catherine Carter is Owner and Director of Catherine Carter Consulting which provides specialist advisory services with a focus on urban environments, city building, new forms of collaboration and diversity. She has deep experience in policy development, advocacy and strategy and is a sought-after media commentator and columnist. In 2018 she founded Salon Canberra which brings together thought leaders, influencers and opinion makers to discuss, debate and dissect issues that influence the future of the nation’s capital. Catherine was the recipient of the Telstra Business Women’s Community and Government Award in 2010 and the NAWIC Crystal Vision Award in 2017 for her work to improve career opportunities for women in the property and construction industry.

Michelle Melbourne
Co-founder, Intelledox

Michelle is a technology and innovation specialist with over 25 years of global business experience. She is an active mentor for senior executives whose mandate is to have impact and drive outcomes through embracing change, leading a new culture of action, and by fearlessly implementing the new normal.


Naomi Flutter
Executive General Manger, Corporate Affairs, Westfarmers

Naomi joined Wesfarmers as Executive General Manager, Corporate Affairs in August 2018. Before Wesfarmers, Naomi worked for Deutsche Bank for 20 years in public sector mergers and acquisitions, equity capital markets and business management. In 2013, she was appointed the Bank’s head of Global Transaction Banking for Australia and New Zealand, responsible for the delivery of commercial banking services to local clients. In 2016, she assumed additional responsibilities, leading the Bank’s Trust and Agency business across seven Asian markets.

Natalie Walker
Founder and Managing Director,  Natalie Walker Executive Search

Natalie Walker is the founder and Managing Director of Natalie Walker Executive Search.  Natalie has extensive experience as an executive search and human resources consultant in Australia and the UK. She works across the public and private education, health, government, not-for-profit, media and arts sectors as well as with ASX-listed companies.

Prior to founding Natalie Walker Executive Search, she was a senior partner with a global executive search firm where she led the firm’s Australian Human Resources Practice with a focus on diversity and inclusion. Her early career in Australia and London spanned retail and merchant banking, structured finance and capital markets. Her personal commitment to social justice has included working with the UK Refugee Council to deliver classes on presentation skills, interview training and resume writing. She has also provided mentoring and employment skills training to female domestic violence victims. Natalie is a member of the Australian Human Resources Institute.

Jane Dahlstrom OAM
President, IAP / Executive Director of Pathology, ANU Medical School

Jane is the Executive Director of ACT Pathology for Canberra Health Services and Chair and Professor of Pathology at the Australian National University (ANU).

From July 2017-Jan 2019 she was the Interim Dean of the ANU College of Health and Medicine.

She is president of the Australasian Division of the International Academy of Pathology (IAP).

She is a board member on the RCPA foundation.

She enjoys teaching and is an active researcher. Jane is a mother and breast cancer survivor.

Rae Frances
Dean, College of Arts and
Social Sciences, ANU

Raelene Frances is Professor of History and Dean of the College of Arts and Social Sciences at the Australian National University. She is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia. She has published widely on aspects of Australian social history. Her books include ‘The Politics of Work’, which won the Australian Historical Association’s Hancock Prize, ‘Women and the Great War’ (co-authored with Bruce Scates), which won the New South Wales Premier’s History Prize and ‘Selling Sex: A Hidden History of Prostitution’, which was short-listed for the Ernest Scott History Prize. She is one of the lead researchers on an Australian Research Council Linkage Project on the History of Anzac Day at Home and Abroad. This is a collaborative project in partnership with the Australian Department of Veterans’ Affairs and a range of international historians and cultural institutions, including the National Museum of Australia, the Australian National Archives and the Historial de la Grande Guerre in France. Rae Frances has taught Australian history, women’s studies, New Zealand history and Australian studies at universities in Melbourne, Perth, Auckland and Sydney. She is the recipient of numerous teaching awards, including the Australian Award for University Teaching which she shared with her colleague, Bruce Scates. Together they took Monash University undergraduates on an annual study tour to the battlefields of Gallipoli and the Western Front. She is a former member of the Council of the National Museum of Australia and former Chair of the Advisory Council for the Australian Intercultural Society.

Elanor Huntington
Dean of Engineering and
Computer Science, ANU

Professor Elanor Huntington is the first female Dean of Engineering and Computer Science at the Australian National University. She is committed to raising the profile of Science and Technology in the community and is on mission to encourage young women to get involved in STEM related fields.





Anne-Marie Perret
Board Member

Anne-Marie Perret has had a varied career applying her skills and capabilities with both private and public sector organisations.

Anne-Marie has worked with the Hong Kong & Shanghai Banking Corporation in Hong Kong, Ernst & Young and PwC in Canberra. After nearly 14 years in Big 4 Accounting firms, Anne-Marie is now out on her own assisting high-growth technology clients with their R&D funding needs through access to government incentives, grant funding and investment. Anne-Marie also works closely with many technology companies on their governance and growth. Anne-Marie utilises these skills as a mentor to companies in the Griffin Accelerator program.

In addition to her professional credentials, Anne-Marie is actively involved in high growth innovative and entrepreneurial companies through not only her role in Griffin Accelerator but also as an Angel Investor and former Chair of Capital Angels, a Director of the Griffin Accelerator Holdings Pty Ltd, a member of the ACT Governments Renewable Energy Innovation Fund Business Advisory Board and as a Program Board Member for the ACT Government’s Small Business Innovation Partnerships.

Anne-Marie is President of the ACT Divisional Council Of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, a board member for several of her investee companies and the Vice President of the Heart Foundation, ACT Division Board.

Jennifer Wyborn
Partner, Clayton Utz

Trusted by her clients for her strategic approach to resolving employment and industrial matters, Jennifer Wyborn is known as a “flexible, approachable, responsible and pragmatic” adviser who “really understands her clients’ business” and helps them manage their difficult employment and human resources matters sensitively.

“Jennifer doesn’t look at things from a billing point of view. You don’t feel like you’re a six-minute increment bill with Jennifer. For her, it’s all about getting the best outcome for her clients.”

An accredited specialist in employment and industrial relations, Jennifer brings a savvy and strategic approach to her clients’ problems, whether it’s brokering difficult enterprise agreements or managing workplace safety incidents. And when disputes arise, Jennifer brings them to a successful conclusion, using alternate dispute resolution or litigation in the Fair Work Commission or court.

“One key thing is that Jennifer, having worked in the APS, understands the demands of the Minister’s Office and she understands the politics in play between the various agencies. That understanding means that she’s all over it [when it comes to helping us to succeed].”

Molly Henman
Associate Director, PeopleScape

Capability building HR professional with over 20 years of experience in Australia, the US. and in Asia she has operated across a range of sectors including aviation, defence industry, government, manufacturing, retail and HR consulting. Wide skill set spanning HR operations and strategy, team leadership, operations and sales management and business development. Stimulates high engagement through influencing and coaching leaders to create the connection between leadership, culture and driving performance.

Kelly Ralston
Chief Client Officer, Austrade

Kelly Ralston is the Chief Client Officer at Austrade. In this role, Kelly is focused on driving innovation and excellence in Austrade’s client interactions, creating the experiences that clients need and advocating for the client within the organisation. More specifically, she has responsibility for client experience insights and capability, Austrade’s client contact centre and digital services along with brand strategy, marketing and communications. Kelly has held a number of corporate, strategy and business leadership roles across Austrade since 2001, most recently leading the international marketing and promotion of Australia’s education and training sectors including the creation and implementation of AIE2025 – a long term market development roadmap. From 2011-15, Kelly served as the senior Austrade representative in the Embassy of Australia in Washington, DC. As Senior Trade Commissioner, Kelly was responsible for Austrade’s trade and investment activity in the mid-Atlantic and south-eastern regions of the United States and led the promotion of Australia’s international education in North America. During 2015 Kelly established and led the new Australian Consulate in Houston, Texas, through its initial start-up phase. Kelly holds a Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Tasmania and prior to joining Austrade, held a range of other positions within the Australian government.

Jane O’Dwyer
Vice-President Engagement & Corporate Affairs, ANU

Jane O’Dwyer leads The Australian National University’s Global Engagement portfolio, encompassing Strategic Communications & Public Affairs, International Strategy & Partnerships, Marketing & Student Recruitment, the Public Policy and Societal Impact Hub, and overseas offices in China, Singapore and North America.

Jane has pursued an interesting and diverse career, with 25 years of Australian and international experience stretching across politics, media, peak bodies and corporate affairs, and has been the establishing Director for the ANU office in Washington DC, and of the ANU Strategic Communications and Public Affairs team.

Prior to joining ANU in 2004, she spent four years in Tokyo working in journalism and public diplomacy. She has previously worked in corporate affairs at the Australian Local Government Association and Sports Medicine Australia, and as a political advisor covering Trade, Regional Development and Resources and Energy portfolios. Jane holds a Master of Management (ANU), a Master of Journalism (Wollongong), and a Bachelor of Arts (Curtin), and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

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Ilea Buffier
Managing Director, Ninetwofive Interiors

Ilea has been a company director for over 16 years. She is an ACT Councillor for the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD), Deputy Chair of Northside Community Service and on the board of Regional Development Australia ACT. She has been Managing Director and owner of Ninetwofive Interiors since 2003 and was awarded Telstra ACT Young Business Women of the Year in 2004.

Ilea is a mentor for the Mill House Social Enterprise Accelerator program, which helps new Canberra businesses whose purpose is to make a positive environmental and social impact. She is also working on her own social enterprise – Evalue8 Sustainability, which builds on a previous business she started – Ninetwofive Sustainability, to help businesses reduce their environmental footprint.

Sally Wheeler
Dean of the College of Law. ANU

Professor Sally Wheeler, OBE MRIA FAcSS is the Dean of ANU College of Law. Prior to taking up this position she was a Professor and Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research and Enterprise at Queen’s University Belfast.

Professor Wheeler was elected to the Academy of Social Sciences and the Royal Irish Academy in 2011 and 2013, respectively. She was the Head of the School of Law at Queen’s University Belfast for several years where she also served as Interim Dean of the Faculty of Arts Humanities and Social Sciences (AHSS), Dean of Internationalisation (AHSS) and, in 2017, Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research and Enterprise. Professor Wheeler is the author or co-author of several books on corporate governance, over 70 articles or book chapters, and she has edited or co-edited nine other books. Professor Wheeler has given major addresses and led workshops around the world, and has also been cited as “one of the world’s leading experts” on the governance of pensions. In the 2017 New Years Honours list, Professor Wheeler was awarded an OBE for services to higher education in Northern Ireland.

Kirsty Dwyer
Chief Executive, People and Diversity. University of Canberra

Kirsty Dwyer is the Chief Executive, People and Diversity at the University of Canberra. Kirsty holds responsibility for the University’s people. The portfolio covers the people and workforce strategy and design, safety and wellbeing, diversity, equity, inclusion and access, talent attraction and retention, engagement and development.

Kirsty commenced at the University of Canberra in February 2014 initially as the Director Human Resources. Kirsty’s experience spans private and public sector organisations across the spectrum of Business Management including operations, line management, people management, sales and account management, financial performance and customer service delivery. A move into Human Resources leadership positions over the past 15 years covers strategy, organisation design and development, transformational change, HR services and issues management, HR systems, analytics and reporting, talent management, workforce planning, industrial relations and recruitment.

Kirsty holds a Bachelor of Business and a Masters in Human Resource Management coupled with accreditations in a range of assessment, development and psychometric testing tools. Kirsty is a Certified Professional of the Australian Human Resource Institute and a past AHRI council representative and holds membership with the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Deb Bowden
Chief Operating Officer, Pharamcutical Society of Australia 

Deborah is passionate about business improvement and governance and has spent the past two years driving structural change in PSA to support the PSA`s Board strategic intent. Over this period Deborah was Acting CEO for seven months.

Before joining PSA, Deborah had a diverse career including working in public and private company settings.  Deborah has developed business and governance expertise across a range of sectors including media, health, water resources, research and banking.  In her role at Fairfax Media, she was instrumental in the implementation of the Fairfax of the Future Program which delivered significant structural change and $235m reduction in fixed cost base.  She has also been the architect and driver of implementation for many change programs that have positioned boards and business for future growth.

A highly skilled executive, Deborah enjoys working collaboratively with clients and other stakeholders to drive positive outcomes.  At PSA, she specialises in managing multiple teams and complex projects, including:

  • Strategy
  • Governance
  • Finance
  • Program delivery
  • Risk
Bobbi Campbell
First Assistant Secretary, Legal Assurance and Governance, Commonwealth Department of Veterans’ Affairs

Over 20 years of experience as a commercial adviser and international lawyer gained in top tier lawfirm, major media corporations based in Asia Pacific and most recently adviser on policy development and strategy with the Australian Government and Government Relations lead with the ABC.

Barbara Livesey
Executive Director at GAPP Consulting Services

Barbara Livesey is Executive Director of GAPP Consulting providing executive
coaching, leadership development and other services. Barbara has over 30 years
experience across the government, non-government and corporate sectors working
in Australia, the Solomon Islands and Timor-Leste most recently.
Highlights of Barbara’s career include as the Chief Executive of Reconciliation
Australia where she developed the highly successful Reconciliation Action Plan
program and was runner up in the Innovation Category for the Equity Trustees Non-
Government CEO Awards. She has also held senior executive positions in the private and public sectors and was a consultant to a Federal Treasurer and Ministers. She has in-depth expertise in public policy particularly in social policy, housing and Indigenous Affairs. Barbara has been a member of Government appointed and non-government Boards. She has also spent time living overseas where she mentored and worked with CEOs, seniormanagers and Boards of non-government organisations. Barbara is also an
experienced facilitator and has qualifications as an Executive Coach.

Sally Pitkin
Chair at Super Retail Group

Dr Sally Pitkin is a Company Director and Lawyer with thirty years corporate experience. She has served as a director and board member of ASX 200 companies, Federal Government owned business enterprises, private companies, regulatory bodies and non-profit organizations. Sally is a member of the National Board of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, a Fellow of the Institute, and a former President of the Queensland Division. She holds a Doctorate in the field of governance, and is an Adjunct Professor with the UQ Business School and a Fellow of Bond University. Her skills in corporate governance, risk management, strategy and business planning, organizational culture and stakeholder engagement have been developed from her legal background, twenty years experience as a non-executive director and board member, and doctoral research.

Azra Khan
Director | Community Services Directorate

Azra Khan has worked in several industry sectors including high-end fragrance, cosmetics, confectionary, private health insurance, Autism support, Carers and health registers including immunization, bowel cancer screening and organ donation.  In the Australian Public Service she has held a range of challenging positions across several policy areas in the Department of Social Services, the Health Insurance Commission and the Department of Human Services.

Azra is excited by the opportunity that abounds for managers and leaders in the era of technology based disruption. Azra sees the challenge is not solely in the adaptation and adoption of digital technology but in developing the right business strategy, with people/culture fully engaged and with the business aligned to deliver new and sustainable competitive advantage.

Azra has developed a keen ability to think strategically ensuring policymaking is evidence based. Azra has extensive experience in project management having lead high profile projects and teams in delivering complex reforms, early intervention responses and organisational change. Azra is a leader who has a proven capacity to collaborate, innovate, inspire and motivate individuals and teams to deliver outcomes within enterprise, program, project, policy development and Program Management Office (PMO) environments. She has also had much experience as a marketer in the private sector having held the position of Product Manager for Elizabeth Arden and Ferrero Australia.

More recently Azra was Co-Chair of the ‘One Canberra’ Reference Group. The aim of the Reference Group was to assist with the broader role of the ACT Government in coordinating a whole- of- government approach to issues affecting culturally and linguistically diverse residents. The ‘One Canberra’ Reference Group developed recommendations to the Minister on concrete plans with measurable outcomes to be implemented. Azra is currently Director the of the National Multicultural Festival a major annual event held in Canberra.

Her professional experience is complimented with over 10 years of community engagement and volunteer work that has called for a whole lot of grit, perseverance and courage. She has gained valuable experience leading not for profit organisations in turbulent times to bring in grass roots interventions as Chair of the Board, President and as a member of the Executive Committee of several community organisations.

Rosanne Brand
Partner, PwC

Rosanne is a Partner in PwC consulting, where she is a specialist in Transformation Programme Management and Enterprise Architecture (Business Architecture). Her experience spans organisations in Australia and the UK, where she has helped some of the largest private and public sector organisations successfully reform and embrace digital service delivery.

Rosanne is passionate about lifting Australia’s digital infrastructure, and has supported some of the largest Government investments underway in Australia focusing on driving simpler, easier to use and more cost effective government services for citizens.

Sally Mackenzie
Director, Strategy & Stakeholders, Customer Owned Banking Association

Sally Mackenzie is a corporate affairs strategist with strong credentials in advocacy, government relations and stakeholder engagement. As Director – Strategy and Stakeholders at the Customer Owned Banking Association (the industry association for Australia’s credit unions and mutual banks), Sally leads COBA’s lobbying and advocacy agenda, working to achieve a more competitive banking market.
Sally has worked in a diverse range of roles in the public and private sectors across the Asia Pacific. She has worked in banking and finance domestically and off-shore for NSW Treasury and as an advisor to the Thai, Philippines and Mongolian governments. She is also an experienced diplomat, having worked in the Australian Embassy in Jakarta and High Commission in Honiara. Sally is passionate about women’s economic empowerment, financial literacy and a firm believer that business can be a force for good and improve the lives of people and communities. She mentors young women through the Beacon Foundation My Road program and has previously served as Deputy Chair of the Canberra Rape Crisis Centre.

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Liesel Wett
CEO, Australian Pathology

Liesel is an experienced CEO and non-executive Director and is Chair and of Director of Goodwin Aged Care Services in the ACT, the largest not for profit employer and leading aged care provider in Canberra. In 2015, Liesel was appointed to the national Board of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD).

Liesel also holds non-executive directorships with Doctors’ Health Services and Pathology Awareness Australia.

As an experienced CEO and health strategist, Liesel is the CEO of Australian Pathology, the peak industry body for private pathology practice in Australia which represents more than 95% of private pathology services. Previously, Liesel held the position of CEO of the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia, the professional membership organisation for 18,000 pharmacists in Australia.

Liesel holds qualifications in science (BSc.) a Masters by Research (MPH) and an MBA (with Distinction).

Debbie Lutter
Chief Security Officer Public Sector Australia and New Zealand, DXC Technology

Debbie is Chief Security Officer – DXC Technology, she transitioned from a career spanning 36 years as a member of the Defence Force and a Senior Public Servant across ASD, Medicare Australia, Department of Human Services and Department of Agriculture and Water Resources resigning from the public service in January 2016 to take up the Chief Security Officer Role at DXC Technology.
Debbie worked as a senior signal analyst and telecommunications engineer as a member of the Royal Australian Air Force and as a public servant in the Defence Signals Directorate, now Australian Signals Directorate. Debbie has broad service delivery experience in advanced telecommunications engineering and has been was instrumental in driving forward on business transformations across Government, moving Government agencies from paper to electronic platforms in regional and remote environments enabling real time transactions to occur for processes such Cargo clearances and Maritime Arrivals. Debbie spent the last 12 years as an SES Band 1 across many Government departments and felt very privileged to be part of the Digital Transformation over several years.
During her career Debbie was the Deputy Chief Information Officer (DCIO) for the Department of Agriculture. As the DCIO Debbie was responsible for the Strategy, Architecture and Strategic Projects branch and was also the Chief Architect and Information Technology Security Advisor for the organisation. Debbie managed over 85 technical specialists, who delivered the department’s ICT strategic projects. She was responsible for the delivery of over 35 ICT major capital projects for the department’s national and regional offices focussed on modernising the department’s service delivery environment.
Debbie won the WICked Woman of the Year Award in 2014, this award seeks to recognise women who have made a significant contribution to the ICT industry and has acted as a role model or mentor in the ICT industry.
Debbie maintains an active sporting life, including running and going to the gym, often before work, playing golf on the weekends and breeding horses on her property as well as being a mother to 2 adult children and grandmother of 5.

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Alison Tanswell
Head of Product and Advice, Commonwealth Superannuation Corporation

Alison is an experienced financial services professional with expertise across superannuation, financial advice, management consulting, funds management and custody.

Jo Scard
Founder / CEO, Fifty Acres – The Communications Agency

As the Founder and CEO, Jo leads the team at Fifty Acres and is involved with all projects offering her insight and highly sought after strategic counsel.

Jo has over 20 years’ experience in communications, corporate and political advisory roles and journalism making her one of Australia’s foremost strategic advisers. A respected former journalist in the UK and Australia Jo has worked with ITV, Associated Press, Seven Network, SBS, ABC and Fairfax. A trained lawyer she is a Member of the NSW Council of the Public Relations Institute of Australia and on the Boards of the Human Rights Law Centre National Justice Project and Hockey ACT.

Jo started Fifty Acres over eight years ago because she wanted to create an agency that supported flexible work and that was motivated by strong values and work in the for-purpose sectors.

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Gretchen Gagel
President, Greatness Consulting

Gretchen has dedicated her career to helping leaders, teams and organisations achieve greatness. Her consulting clients, including GM, Procter & Gamble, Questar Gas, Black & Veatch, and Miller Pipeline, achieve measurable and sustainable change that drives higher levels of performance. Gretchen’s PhD studies in leadership and organisation agility inform both her work with clients and her post-graduate teaching at the University of Denver Daniels College of Business and the Australian National University (ANU) College of Business and Economics. She has been president of two organisations and was formerly assistant dean at the Daniels College of Business.

Irene Quah
COO, Australian Medical Association

Irene is an experienced CPA qualified accountant and Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors with a commercial acumen across various industries accumulated over a career spanning 18 years. Currently the Acting Chief Operating Officer of the Australian Medical Association, Irene has also worked in large corporate organisations, small private companies and the Federal Government.

With professional grounding in auditing, financial and management accounting, Irene also has broader experience in strategic leadership, governance and risk management.

She has also contributed more broadly to the advancement of society by volunteering on various organisation Boards and Committees.

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Jenet Connell
Deputy Australian Statistician / Chief Operating Officer, Australian Bureau of Statistics

Jenet has 16 years in the APS, the last 7 at the Deputy level, and has worked in 6 difference departments/agencies. Prior to the APS she worked in the private sector; prior to that state governments in WA and Victoria.

With a Masters degree in Organisational Psychology, Jenet has a passion for helping organisations achieve their highest level of performance – through their systems, people and processes.

Fiona Jolly
CEO, Ad Standards

Fiona has been CEO of Ad Standards, Australia’s administrator of the advertising self-regulation system, for 14 years. She has transformed the organisation to world leading. Prior to that 15 years in Australian Government including Attorney-GEneral’s Department and FSANZ. Fiona has had more than 20 years as Director and Chair of not-for-profit Boards. Also has 4 boys.

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Phillipa Leggo
Co-Founder / Commercial Director, Scott Leggo Gallery

Phillipa Leggo is the Co-Founder and Commercial Director of Canberra based Australian landscape photography business, Scott Leggo Gallery. An online business for over a decade and now a permanent gallery in Kingston. The Scott Leggo Gallery features Australian made artworks and gifts that are sold locally and worldwide. Phillipa runs the company together with her husband Scott, and heads up all commercial aspects of the business.

Prior to founding Scott Leggo Gallery, Phillipa’s corporate finance career spanned 20 years from audit through to CFO. She worked for some well-known Australian brands including professional services firm KPMG, ASX listed Wesfarmers and luxury travel company Scenic Tours.

Phillipa is an entrepreneurial and outcomes-focussed leader. She is passionate about enhancing customer experience and shareholder value and developing a high performing culture.

Zoe Ferrari
Managing Director, CBRE

Zoe Ferrari has been in the commercial property industry for over 15 years.

She has extensive experience in all aspects of commercial leasing, sales and property management and has more recently moved into the role of Managing Director for the ACT business where she oversees an office of 36.

Her client base consists of large institutional funds as well as local private developers and she has excellent relationships right across the property sector.

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Sarah Rajic
Co-founder/Director, Capital Recruit

Sarah Rajic is a business owner, recruiter and company director. In 2014, Sarah cofounded Capital Recruit servicing clients in government and the private sector in corporate recruitment.

In addition, Sarah is a non-executive Director of the Canberra Business Chamber board and the Canberra Community Bank – Molonglo Financial Services .