Yassmin Abdel-Magied

Yassmin-Abdel-Magied-WOW-Brisbane-2015-SpeakerThe 2015 Queensland Young Australian of the Year, Yassmin Abdel-Magied is a mechanical engineer, social advocate, writer and petrol head. She advocates for the empowerment of youth, women and those from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. Yassmin is also deeply passionate about diversifying public voices, connecting people and catalysing change. At sixteen, Yassmin Abdel-Magied founded Youth Without Borders, an organisation focused on enabling young people to work for positive change in their communities. In 2012 she was named Young Leader in the Australian Financial Review and Westpac’s inaugural 100 Women of Influence Awards. Born in Sudan and moving to Australia at the age of two, she graduated top of her university year in 2011 with a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering (First Class Honours), and was a recipient of the University of Queensland’s Dean’s Excellence scholarship. In 2007, Yassmin was named Young Australian Muslim of the Year for her work in the community and in 2010 Young Queenslander of the Year. She has served on various state and federal councils and currently sits on three NGO Boards as a non-executive director. For her day job, she works as a FIFO engineer on oil and gas rigs. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, having a yarn, football (Liverpool FC!), Formula 1, boxing and is saving for her first V8. Visit Yassmin’s website

Davida Allen

DavidaAllen (2)Davida Allen is a Queensland artist. As a student at Brisbane’s Stuartholme Convent in the 1960s, she had Betty Churcher as an art teacher and later at the Brisbane Central Technical College she studied under Roy Churcher. Since 1999 she has shown with Philip Bacon Galleries. Allen’s work has been exhibited nationally and internationally. A solo retrospective was held at MOCA Brisbane in 1988, and solo exhibitions have also been held at the National Gallery of Victoria in 1983 and 1987. In the 1980s she gained notoriety with a series of erotic works depicting actor Sam Neill. In 1986 she won the prestigious Archibald Prize with a portrait of her father-in-law, John Shera, watering his garden. She has written and illustrated two books, The Autobiography of Vicki Myers: Close to the Bone and What is a Portrait?, and she wrote and directed the loosely autobiographical feature film Feeling Sexy in 1999. Her work is held by the National Gallery of Australia, Art Gallery of South Australia, Art Gallery of Western Australia, Queensland Art Gallery/Gallery of Modern Art, and National Gallery of Victoria. (Photo: Russell Shakespeare)

Skye Anderton

SKYE-ANDERTON-Ruby-Olive3 (2) photoMy love of travel, colour and exploring global cultures and crafts paired with my passion for designing and admiring beautiful products inspired me to launch Ruby Olive Jewellery & Accessories. I previously lived in London and worked as a designer, product developer and buyer of fashion accessories for 8 years. I arrived back home to Brisbane in 2010 and decided to work towards my own label rather than work for someone else. I knew in this current economic climate I had to launch an affordable range and I wanted to market this range towards people that appreciate something a little different. I am passionate about using sustainable raw materials and producing products that have an ethical heart. I was recently awarded the 2014 Telstra Young Business Woman of the year (QLD) and was named one of Queensland’s Best and Brightest for 2014. I am a campaigner of International Woman’s rights and heavily support The Hunger Project (a global project helping to end the cycle of poverty in developing nations) and Mummy’s Wish (a local Australian charity supporting mums with cancer).

Steve Austin

Steve Austin_15 photoSteve Austin is a Brisbane-based broadcaster and presenter. After completing a degree in Journalism he decided that Townsville was a good place for dugongs and came south to join ABC Television. As a researcher for the state 7.30 Report, then producer, he was there when the momentous announcement came. “Welcome to the new National 7.30 Report. Oh by the way you’ll also be producing the local Stateline program”. After 12 months he became the first full time producer of ABC Television Queensland’s Stateline Public Affairs program. Brief stints in ABC radio news and other assorted areas of the media and journalism led him to realise that Nick Cave probably had the right idea. If you want to change the world, Sing! He is the presenter of the Mornings program on 612 ABC Brisbane.

Indu Balachandran

Indu Photo smallIndu Balachandran was inspired by her grandmother’s story, and used cultural development processes to envision this project. She moved to Sydney from Mumbai at the age of eleven. Beginning her professional life in corporate finance, Indu moved into community development. Working on the ground in cultural community development inspired her bring to light the stories of women like her grandmother, artists, female, with an inspiring tale of challenge, resistance and dedication. A collage of stories emerged, resulting in ‘Her Inner Song’. Indu performs and teaches veena and vocal music in the Indian Carnatic tradition, and is based in Sydney.

Bianca Beetson

Bianca Beetson photoBianca Beetson is of the Kabi Kabi people of the Sunshine Coast. Her work is instantly recognisable as she always uses the colour pink. She is a member of the Campfire Group as well as the ProppaNOW artists group, both based in Brisbane. She has shown her work in a number of exhibitions including the ‘2nd Asia Pacific Triennal’ at the Queensland Art Gallery in 1996/1997, ‘Black Humour’ at the Canberra Contemporary Art Space in 1997, as well as the 2001 exhibition “Gatherings, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art From Queensland Australia” in Brisbane. Furthermore, Bianca’s work is concerned with her individual identity as an indigenous Australian, as well as the identity of Australia as a nation in terms of its history and governance. Other areas of reference include the co-modification of Aboriginal Culture; the demarcation of Art, artefact and Kitsch; critique of the social and cultural structures; and the critique of the beauty and the feminine. More recently, Bianca has found a passion for pottery and ceramics. Bianca’s latest series of work explores issues of growing up a fair skinned Urban Aboriginal woman, it looks at issues surrounding the loss of traditional culture through the process of assimilation and the Aborigines Protection act.

Kylie Blucher

Kylie-BlucherKylie Blucher has an extensive knowledge of both the radio and television industry after more than 25 years working with both the Austereo Radio Network and the Nine Network. She has held various promotion, sales, marketing and publicity positions to become a highly respected and sought-after authority in the media industry. Blucher held various positions within Austereo, including Promotions and Marketing Director of B105 FM where she was involved in the strategic planning for the station. From this role she was promoted to the role of Promotions Manager at 2Day FM in Sydney – Australia’s largest radio market. Blucher then worked at the Triple M Network in the role of National Sales Promotions Director. Her responsibilities included creating and implementing network-based promotions nationwide. This involved working with some of the biggest agencies and clients in the country. Returning to Brisbane, she moved into the television industry at Nine Queensland in 1997 where she has moved through the ranks as Marketing Director to Programming and Marketing Director, before taking on her current role in 2010 as Managing Director. During her career Blucher has been instrumental in securing and maintaining Nine Queensland’s major sponsorships such as the Royal Brisbane Show (EKKA), Brisbane Broncos, Gold Coast Titans, Surf Life Saving and brought the prestigious Major Brisbane Festival back to the Nine Network. Blucher has held Board positions with the Surf Lifesaving Queensland Foundation, Riverfestival and the Major Brisbane Festival Board which was created after the amalgamation of the Riverfestival and Brisbane Festival Boards. Blucher was Deputy Chair of MBF when she resigned from the Board in 2007. In 2013 she took up a position as a Director on the Boards of the Queensland Eye Institute Foundation (previously the Prevent Blindness Foundation) and Youngcare and most recently, in 2014, has taken up a position on the Board of the Queensland Performing Arts Trust.

Cath Bowdler

Cath Bowdler photoCath Bowdler is the Director of Godinymayin Yijard Rivers Arts and Culture Centre in Katherine in the Northern Territory. She is an arts administrator, curator and academic who has worked extensively with Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities and artists over the last 20 years. She has been Director of 24HR Art in Darwin, Lecturer at Charles Darwin University, Director of Wagga Wagga Art Gallery and lecturer at Charles Sturt University. She holds a PhD from the Australian National University in the field of Aboriginal art and culture. She has written extensively about Australian art in journals such as Art Monthly, Artlink and Broadsheet. She is a co-director of WOW Katherine 2013 and 2014.

Elizabeth Broderick

Elizabeth-Broderick-WOW-Brisbane-2015-SpeakerElizabeth Broderick was appointed for a five year term as Sex Discrimination Commissioner in September 2007. The term has been extended to September 2015. She was also the Commissioner responsible for Age Discrimination from September 2007 until July 2011. During her term, she has been committed to improving gender equality through her advocacy in preventing violence against women and sexual harassment, improving lifetime economic security for women, balancing paid work and unpaid caring responsibilities, promoting women’s representation in leadership and strengthening gender equality laws and agencies. Elizabeth has been a key advocate for Australia’s national paid parental leave scheme and domestic violence reform. She has championed the changes to the ASX Corporate Governance Principles to increase the number of women at decision making level. She has developed the Male Champions of Change strategy and worked with the Australian Government to strengthen gender equality laws and agencies. In April 2011 she led the Commission’s Review into the Treatment of Women in the Australian Defence Force, and she now leads the Commission’s collaborative work with the Australian Defence Force on embedding cultural change across Navy, Army and Air Force. Elizabeth is Global Co-Chair of the Women’s Empowerment Principles Leadership Group, a joint initiative of the UN Global Compact and UN Women; a member of the World Bank’s Advisory Council on Gender and Development, a member of the Australian Defence Force Gender Equality Advisory Board and Supply Nation.   Elizabeth is an Ambassador for the Foundation to Prevent Violence Against Women and their Children and the overall winner of the 100 Women of Influence Awards for 2014.

Quentin Bryce

Quentin-BrycecroppedThe Honourable Quentin Bryce is the former Governor-General of Australia and former Governor of Queensland. Ms Bryce has held a significant number of esteemed positions in the areas of human rights and equal opportunity, some among firsts for women in this country. Most notably Ms Bryce was the Federal Sex Discrimination Commissioner, Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission; the Convenor, National Women’s Advisory Council; founding Chair and CEO, National Childcare Accreditation Council; and Director, Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission, Queensland. Ms Bryce has just completed a role as Chair of the Special Taskforce on Domestic and Family Violence in Queensland.

Jane Caro

Jane-Caro-WOW-Brisbane-2015-SpeakerJane Caro is an author, novelist, journalist, broadcaster, columnist, advertising writer and social commentator. She spent 30 years as an advertising writer and her creative work has won many national and international awards. She is in high demand as a speaker and conference facilitator. Her second novel Just a Queen, the sequel to her first Just a Girl, will be published in April 2015. She is currently working on a memoir for Pan MacMillan called Plain Speaking Jane. It will be her eighth book. She writes regular columns for Management Today magazine, Mamamia and Sunday Life. In 2013 she created, wrote and presented a 6 part radio series for ABC Life Matters For Better, For Worse. In 2015 this series will be recreated as a 4-part TV special on ABC Compass. Jane appears regularly in the media including Sunrise, Weekend Sunrise, The Gruen Transfer and Planet, Q&A, The Drum and The Project.

Victoria Carthew

PhotoVictoria is a highly respected journalist, presenter, broadcaster, producer and emcee, and has more than two decades of media experience. Currently a presenter with the Seven Network’s popular travel and lifestyle program, ‘Queensland Weekender’, Victoria is also a regular guest on both Radio 4BC and ABC 612. As the host of Broncos TV, she is a familiar face at Brisbane Broncos rugby league games and is the team’s preferred emcee for awards and events. (Victoria emceed the farewell event for popular player Darren Lockyer at Suncorp Stadium…to an audience of almost 51,000!) As an expert sport commentator, Victoria was the AFL’s first female boundary rider and is passionate about supporting and increasing participation in sports. In recent times, she has hosted events for the Queensland Firebirds, Surf Lifesaving Queensland, small business and tourism breakfasts, and facilitated sports forums for the State government. She is also a director for Stadiums Queensland and is on the Advisory Council for the Sporting Wheelies Association. In addition to her passion for sport, Victoria is also sought after for her views on lifestyle issues including travel and food, news, family and fashion. Victoria has hosted glamourous events interviewing high-profile guests such as Mark Bouris, Celebrity Apprentice Australia and Chairman of Yellow Brick Road and international bestselling author Kathy Lette as well as Melbourne Cup soirees and corporate cocktail events.

Christine Castley

Christine Castley photoChristine Castley has 20 years’ experience in the public sector. During the course of her career with the Queensland Government, Christine has worked for a number of departments, covering a range of areas including industrial relations, state development and natural resources. Christine joined the Department of the Premier and Cabinet in September 2000 and has worked in the Environment and Resources Policy Unit and the Law and Justice Policy Unit. In January 2014, Christine was appointed as Senior Executive Director, Social Policy with the Queensland Department of the Premier and Cabinet – in this role, she deals with a cross-portfolio of social issues including health, child protection, disability services, justice and policing, community safety, social housing, public works and national parks, sport and recreation. She holds a Bachelor of Laws, Bachelor of Arts (English and Communications) and a Master of Public Administration from the University of Queensland. Christine has had a varied career in the Queensland public service, spanning a number of social and economic policy projects, including leading the 2008 review of Queensland’s Public Service Act, the 2009 Right to Information Project, implementation of the Queensland Government’s response to the Queensland Floods Commission of Inquiry and developing a Queensland Government action plan on alcohol-related violence. In August 2014, Christine was appointed to head the Secretariat for the Special Taskforce on Domestic and Family Violence In Queensland, chaired by the Honourable Quentin Bryce AD CVO, a review which culminated in the landmark report “Not Now, Not Ever: Putting an End to Domestic and Family Violence in Queensland.” The report made 140 recommendations for a violence free Queensland and provides a foundation for long term reform.

Laura Chalmers

Laura Chalmers photo v2Laura Chalmers has been working in the media and communications sector for more than a decade, both as a journalist and as press secretary to former Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Senator Penny Wong. She joined The Courier Mail newspaper in late 2013, covering health and social policy for the newspaper before becoming assistant chief of staff in 2014. Prior to her ministerial experience, she worked for seven years as a journalist with News Limited, both in Adelaide and in Canberra in the federal press gallery covering federal politics. She has a Bachelor of Laws with Honours and a Bachelor of Economics from the University of Adelaide. She is a committee member of Women in Media Queensland.

Helen Conway

Director of the Equal Opportunity for Women in the Workplace Agency (EOWA) Helen Conway Helen Conway has 30 years’ experience, primarily in business and, more recently, in the public sector. She spent 10 years in private legal practice, including 7 years as a partner in a major law firm in Sydney, and then moved into the corporate sector where she worked as a senior executive in the insurance, transport, energy, retail and construction industries for 18 years. At the same time, she undertook various directorships in the health, transport and superannuation sectors. In March 2015, Helen completed her term as CEO of the Australian Government’s Workplace Gender Equality Agency. During her term, she stewarded the seamless implementation of new legislation governing the Agency and led the development of the Agency’s strategic vision and long-term change agenda for driving improved gender equality outcomes in Australian workplaces. This included delivering world-leading unique standardised benchmark gender data, and conducting bold change campaigns and developing innovative educational resources. Helen has a long track record of undertaking a broad range of voluntary activities including those in support of women. She was a member of the New South Wales Equal Opportunity Tribunal for 10 years including 3 years as its Senior Judicial Member. She is an expert in workplace gender equality. In 2005, Helen was awarded the Australian Corporate Lawyer of the Year by the Australian Corporate Lawyers Association and in 2015 was inducted into the National Australia Bank/ Women’s Agenda Hall of Fame.

Sam Cook

SamCookImage300dpiListed in the worlds Who’s Who of Women, Sam Cook is cross-artform practitioner, educator, arts management executive and leader. A retired musician she is the founder of Nomads Palace, the worlds first green designed travelling multi-arts venue and was the Director of The Dreaming Festival and a programmer of the Woodford Folk Festival. Artistically, Sam is a playwright, writer, visual artist and graphic designer. Administratively, Sam started working in publishing ahead of becoming the CEO of a leading Australian Theatre Company before launching her company KISSmyBLAKarts which has tentacles into Artist Management and Apparel. Recipient of the UK Arts Council Fellowship in 2007 and 2011, alumni of Melbourne Business School and creator of the #SOSBLAKAUSTRALIA campaign, Sam was the inaugural Aboriginal arts columnist for Tracker and Artshub, and is founder of Australia’s Blak History Month.

Anne Coombs

Anne Coombs photoAnne Coombs is a writer and social entrepreneur. She is a member of the board, and past chair of GetUp! and spent a decade as the executive director of the Becher Foundation, which supported progressive and innovative social projects, particularly in the area of indigenous policy, refugees and regional communities. In her philanthropic work, both through the foundation and privately, she has supported female leadership in the not-for-profit sector. Anne was one of the founders of Rural Australians for Refugees, an effective refugee advocacy organization from the post-Tampa era that has recently been reactivated. She has hands- on experience in network building, message-shaping and promotion and has been involved in many community activist initiatives at both a local and national level. Anne is the author of three books on contemporary social history and two novels. She is also an alumnus of Sydney Leadership.

Lisa Edwards

Lisa Edwards photoLisa Edwards is a Brisbane born and bred architect, who also happens to be a paraplegic after sustaining a spinal cord injury in a construction site fall when she was 27. As a public servant in the State Government designing social housing for the last 13 years, she loves working for the people of Queensland, and enjoys the challenge of making comfortable, people-friendly built space with a limited palette of materials and a low budget. With 27 years’ experience in the architecture business in small/medium sized private practices, in partnership with fellow UQ graduates, and in the public sector, Lisa believes that making architecture is a team effort and empathy with your fellow teammates is key. She took the opportunity to strap on a tool belt and work as a labourer on residential projects for 4 years after completing the first part of her architecture degree, which was an invaluable experience. Her own personal perspective of getting around on wheels gives her an insight into the design of accessible built spaces that treat people with disabilities with dignity. Lisa is particularly interested in the Universal Design movement which uses the idea that good design works for people of all abilities and ages, and has been spreading the word about inclusive design as an architecture tutor, guest critic and occasional lecturer at University of Qld, Griffith University and QUT. Lisa has been a keen artist since she could hold a pencil, and bemoans the dying out of the art of hand drawing in architecture. Wheelchair tennis is her sport of choice and she likes taking on challenging terrain in the bush and getting into some salt water at the beach, particularly at her favourite locations on the Sunshine Coast.

Faiza El-Higzi

Faiza imageFaiza El-Higzi is an active community member who has been living in Australia for the past 20 years. She is of African, Mid-Eastern descent. Faiza has worked in Australia and overseas, in the public, private and the NGO sectors and has  more than ten years public sector experience in Australia providing strategic policy advice at both the State and Federal levels. She is currently the National Human Rights Advisor for the National Council for Women and was the Economic Advisor for the Queensland Chapter. Faiza holds four post graduate degrees in science, education, project management, and international business. She is currently the Manager of the Romero Centre, a drop-in community centre in Brisbane for refugee and asylum seekers’ support.

Julie Ewington

Julie-EwingtonJulie Ewington is a well-respected curator, writer, and broadcaster specialising in contemporary art. In the 1970s, Ewington helped to found the Women’s Art Movement, set up to support and promote women artists. She commenced working at Queensland Art Gallery in January 1997, as Curator of Australian Art to 1970, and was appointed Head of Australian Art, with responsibility for Contemporary Art, in 2001. In 2008 she was appointed Curatorial Manager, Australian Art, heading a team working on all aspects of Australian art from European colonisation to the present. In 2012, Julie led the curatorial team for Contemporary Australia: Women at Queensland Art Gallery/Gallery of Modern Art (QAGoMA), a major exhibition that celebrated contemporary Australian women artists. In 2005 she curated a solo exhibition of the work of Fiona Hall titled The Art of Fiona Hall, and wrote the accompanying monograph published by Piper Press. In 2013, she wrote the first major book dedicated to the work of Del Kathryn Barton, also published by Piper Press. She is an expert on contemporary Southeast Asian art as well as contemporary Australian art, and contributed to QAGoMA’s Asia-Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art (APT) from 1996 to 2012. (Photo: Natasha Harth)

Minister Shannon Fentiman

shannon-fentiman (2)Shannon holds a Bachelor of Laws (First Class Hons) from QUT and recently completed her Master of Laws at Melbourne University. She was admitted as a Legal Practitioner in 2007. Shannon is committed to social justice and throughout her career has worked to improve the lives of working people. She is passionate about fighting discrimination and unfairness at work and in the community. Prior to her election to the Queensland Parliament as the Member for Waterford, Shannon worked as a solicitor for Hall Payne Lawyers. She has considerable experience in employment law having previously worked as an industrial advocate for the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union. She has also worked as a Judge’s Associate in the Supreme Court of Queensland to her Honour Justice Atkinson. Shannon has also been a board member of the Logan Women’s Health and Wellbeing Centre, Secretary of the Centre Against Sexual Violence in Logan and the Duty Solicitor at the Beenleigh Neighbourhood Centre.

Professor Bronwyn Fredericks

Bronwyn-FredericksProfessor Bronwyn Fredericks is a Murri woman from south-east Queensland (Ipswich/ Brisbane) and a strong advocate for all forms of education and training. As the Pro Vice-Chancellor (Indigenous Engagement) she responsible for the operations and strategic direction of CQUniversity’s Office of Indigenous Engagement. The Office provides teaching, research and support activities to improve outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and communities. As well as CQUniversity’s Pro Vice-Chancellor (Indigenous Engagement), Professor Fredericks also holds the role of BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance (BMA) Chair in Indigenous Engagement. Bronwyn is a recipient of a numerous awards and fellowships and is a member of the National Indigenous Research and Knowledges Network (NIRAKN) and the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS). She holds a Diploma of Teaching (Secondary), Bachelor of Education, Master of Education – Leadership & Management, Master of Education Studies and a PhD (Health Science), along with VET qualifications in Training and Assessment and Community Culture.

Sophie Galaise

Sophie Galaise photo smallSophie Galaise, one of the world’s leading orchestra executives, was appointed CEO of Queensland Symphony Orchestra on 3 June 2013. Most recently Ms Galaise has led the Orchestre Symphonique de Québec (Quebec Symphony Orchestra), one of Canada’s leading orchestras, for five years, driving a turnaround in financial and market performance and re-establishing it as a cultural institution of renown. Originally an orchestral musician (flautist), Ms Galaise brings a great depth of understanding of the artistic aspects of an orchestra, together with strategic management and leadership capabilities. Sophie’s credentials include an Executive MBA from McGill University, Canada (2012); PhD, Musicology from the Universite de Montréal, Canada (2003); MA, Musicology from the Universite de Montréal (1991) and a Bachelor of Musicology in 1987. In 2009 the Minister of Culture, Communications and Status of Women named Ms Galaise a member of the Commission des arts de la scène et de la diffusion (Advisory Committee on Arts and Dissemination) where she served until 2012. Ms Galaise became a mentor to young executives of cultural organisations, and served on many boards such as Orchestras Canada and the Centre for Local Development of Quebec. Ms Galaise has presented more than 20 public lectures and is the author of more than 50 leading articles and three books.

Laura Geitz

LauraGeitz photoLaura Geitz grew up in the small town of Allora on the Darling Downs. Her first taste of netball came as a social player filling in for sister Carla’s team and her Dad, Ross came home from the game saying Laura would play for Queensland. Laura Represented Darling Downs School Team in 2002. She started playing netball at the age of 13 at Warwick Netball Association. Laura was Recruited to represent Queensland and Australia at 17/U level and earned a scholarship at the Institute of sport and her first captaincy role with the AIS Darters at the age of 18 in the Commonwealth Bank Trophy. Laura led the 21/U State team in 2006 and made her debut at the Firebirds in 2008 in the first year of the ANZ Championships. She made her Australian Netball Diamonds debut in 2008. In 2011 she undertook a leadership role with the Firebirds stepping up to be captain following the season-ending injury of Lauren Nourse. She helped lead the team to a record-breaking undefeated season in 2011 and ultimately bringing home the ANZ Championship trophy to Queensland. Geitz has been the official captain of the Firebirds since 2012. Geitz then led the Firebirds to two ANZ Championship Grand Final appearances in 2013 and 2014. She was named Queensland Firebirds Player of the Year in 2010, Player’s Player in 2011, Member’s Player of the Year in 2013 and MVP alongside Romelda Aiken in 2014. In 2013 she was named as only the second Queenslander to captain Australia’s most successful women’s sporting team in its history. She led the Diamonds to Gold Medal victory in the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. She has 53 Test Caps for Australia and has recently been reappointed as Captain to lead the Diamonds as the Netball World Cup in Sydney in August 2015.

Jane Gleeson-White

Jane-Gleeson-WhiteJane Gleeson-White is a writer with degrees in economics and literature. She is the author of Six Capitals: The revolution capitalism has to have – or can accountants save the planet? and Double Entry: How the merchants of Venice shaped the modern world (2011). Double Entry won the 2012 Nib Literary Award for excellence in research, and was shortlisted for the 2013 NSW Premier’s Literary Awards, the 2012 Age Book of the Year and the 2012 Queensland Literary Awards. Gleeson-White’s other books are about literature: Australian Classics (2007) and Classics (2005). She is currently a PhD student at the University of New South Wales and blogs at bookishgirl.com.au.

Heather Griffin

Heather Griffin photoHeather Griffin was born in 1949. She has, throughout her career, found herself in occupations which were, at the time, considered “male professions”. She trained in the 1960s in geology and began working for the Geological Survey of New South Wales in 1970. She married the same year. Women had only just been given permission to accompany the men on field work. It was still illegal at that time for a woman to go down a mine in New South Wales. When her children came along, and with little available in the way of good child care facilities especially during periods of field work, she decided that being a stay-at-home mum was going to be the best option. While her children were young, she undertook a research Master of Science degree in geology. In the 1980s she retrained as a maths-science teacher and taught initially in the Queensland education system, but soon found herself working for Griffith University who had employed her to develop, co-ordinate and work alongside teachers at Logan College of TAFE in a course designed to provide access to people from low socio-economic backgrounds into science and information technology degree programs. While working for Griffith University, she took up studying theology “as a hobby” because she had a great longing to deepen her faith. In 2001 she was ordained as a minister in the Uniting Church in Australia. She has served in three placements – Holland Park St David’s Uniting Church, Sherwood Uniting Church and then Brisbane Valley Uniting Church (Esk, Toogoolawah, Moore). She is retiring at the end of June 2015 but intends to continue her voluntary work with the church on the Synod Interfaith Relationships Committee as the need to continue to increase understanding and minimise fear is something very close to her heart.

Kirsty Sword Gusmao

Kirsty-SwordAustralian Kirsty Sword’s gift for languages introduced her, as translator and researcher, to the people of Timor-Leste, its occupation, and its struggle for independence. Working in Indonesia as a teacher and human rights campaigner, she became deeply involved in that struggle, and the conduit for its communications with the outside world. She met its charismatic leader, Xanana Gusmao, (ultimately the first President of the new nation) while he was in jail in Indonesia, and married him in 2000. They have three sons. As First Lady, she dedicated herself to the reconstruction of the ravaged nation, founding both the first library with resources in the four key languages, and the Alola Foundation, an organisation to assist women victims of violence. The Foundation, of which she is Chair, encourages girls to complete their schooling, and through education on breast feeding, has transformed the infant mortality rate in the country. In 2007, she was appointed Goodwill Ambassador for Education, and continues in that role to champion education, and to rehabilitate schools in the countries remote regions.

Susan Handley

Susan croppedSusan Handley is a deeply committed Baha’i who has lived and worked on four continents. Over the past decade she has actively promoted interfaith harmony in Brisbane, and organises a World Religion Day event on the third Sunday in January each year. She loves the following quote “Let your vision be world-embracing, rather than confined to your own selves” (Baha’u’llah)

Brenna Harding

Brenna-HardingOne of Australia’s most exciting young actors, Brenna Harding is best known for her role in the hit television series Puberty Blues alongside Australian acting veterans Claudia Karvan, Susie Porter and Dan Wyllie. For her role as Sue Knight she was awarded the 2012 Logie for Most Popular New Female Talent. She was also nominated for the Graham Kennedy Award for Most Outstanding New Talent and the AACTA Award for Best Young Actor. Brenna’s other television credits include the award-winning ABC TV children’s series My Place and Packed to the Rafters and is about to begin filming on the third season of A Place To Call Home. Brenna is currently performing in Jumpy a co-production between the Melbourne Theatre Company and Sydney Theatre Company. Brenna’s film credits include the short film Cockelshell directed by Tony Ayres. Which premiered at the 2012 Melbourne International Film Festival as part of the feature film collaboration The Turning, based on the Tim Winton short story collection of the same name. Brenna has spent five years working with youth run anti-homophobia organisation ‘Wear it Purple’ and is currently an ambassador for the feminist organisation ‘Young Vagabond’. In 2014 Brenna was awarded the Marie Bashir Peace Prize for her contribution to social justice.

Pauline Harvey-Short

Pauline Harvey Short photosmallPauline Harvey-Short is the current Dean of School at Brisbane Girls Grammar School. She has a background in Health and Physical Education teaching and is a former Chair of Womensport Queensland and a former board member of Bicentennial Youth Foundation. She has published work on the history of Health, Physical Education and Sport at Brisbane Girls Grammar School and has represented Queensland and Australia in Softball.

Kelly Higgins-Devine

Kelly Higgins-Devine_14 photo SMALLKelly Higgins-Devine loves seeking out the ordinary in the extraordinary and the extraordinary in the ordinary. The 2007 ABC Local Radio Broadcaster of the Year, Kelly’s career in radio started at 4VL in Charleville, a leaping pad to stations in Cairns and Shepparton and then back to Brisbane where she worked in commercial radio newsrooms for a few years before finding her way into the soft, warm arms of 612 ABC Brisbane. Starting her ABC career with a stint in NewsRadio in 1999, Kelly was picked up by the radio newsroom where she spent five years wonderful years as a journalist, senior sub-editor and newsreader. She was offered the statewide Afternoons program in 2004, moved to 612 ABC Brisbane Drive in 2006 and in 2012 returned to her home turf of Afternoons. Kelly was awarded “Best Use of the Medium” at the 2011 ABC Local Radio awards for her overnight broadcast during the hours that Category 5 Cyclone Yasi crossed the northern coast of Queensland. Hundreds of people rang, sent letters, cards and emails praising Kelly for her calm, encouraging manner that night, with many of them saying she had saved their life. “There are so many wonderful aspects to my job,” says Kelly, “especially spreading my love for the Brisbane Lions and for the song Devil Went Down to Georgia to the largest number of people possible. “Seriously though, I relish what I do because I’m able to explore the issues of the day with the major players, and then to open up discussion with an audience that is opinionated, insightful and intelligent”. Kelly can be heard on ABC Local Radio from 1-3pm weekdays.

Jackie Huggins

Huggins photo smallJackie Huggins AM, FAHA  is an Indigenous Australian author, historian and Aboriginal rights activist of the Bidjara Central Queensland and Birri-Gubba Juru North Queensland peoples. In addition to being Director of Jackie Huggins and Associates, her other engagements include  Director of the Telstra Foundation and Adjunct Professor, Australian Centre for Indigenous History at the Australian National University. She is also a spokesperson for Recognise. Huggins is a former Co-Chair of Reconciliation Australia, a former Chair of the Queensland Domestic Violence Council, and former Deputy Director of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies Unit (University of Queensland). She has been a member of the National Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation, the AIATSIS Council, and Co-Commissioner for Queensland for the Inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal Children. In 2001 she was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for her work with Indigenous people, particularly in reconciliation, literacy, women’s issues and social justice. In 2007 Huggins was named University of Queensland Alumnus of the Year. She has published a wide range of essays and studies dealing with Indigenous history and identity. She is the author of Sistergirl (University of Queensland Press, 1998), and co-author, with Rita Huggins, of the critically acclaimed biography Auntie Rita (Aboriginal Studies Press, 1994).

Judith James

Judith-JamesJudith James has been a singer, journalist, arts marketer and business owner (listed in order of appearance). She has lived in four countries and managed marketing departments for major organisations such as the Royal Opera House Covent Garden and Royal National Theatre UK.  In recent decades Judith provided strategic planning services for Australia’s cultural sector. Four years ago she retired to care for her husband who has dementia and this is when her story begins. Now confined to their 50-acre property outside Mudgee, a small town in NSW’s central west, Judith considered her options. When she rediscovered her love of singing, the results surprised even her.

Laurel Johnson

Laurel Johnson pictureLaurel is the Director of Laurel Johnson Planning. She offers consultancy services in urban, social, community and transport planning. For the last 3 years, Laurel has been engaged full-time at the University of Queensland designing and delivering planning education and research mentoring for the next generation of urban planners.  As well as these things, Laurel is the main breadwinner in her family. She is a mum to a 10 year old daughter and a step-mum to 19 and 22 year old girls. In the ‘time in-between’, she volunteers at her young child’s school and facilitates a weekly writing group in Inala. Laurel finds Brisbane exhausting for a working mother and imagines a city which balances the private and public needs of its residents- equally respecting both. That is a New World City. A city that considers the many needs of its residents and visitors.

Jude Kelly CBE

Jude-Kelly-WOW-Brisbane-2015-SpeakerJude Kelly was appointed Artistic Director of Southbank Centre, Britain’s largest cultural institution, in 2006. She founded Solent People’s Theatre and Battersea Arts Centre, and was the founding director of the West Yorkshire Playhouse. In 1997, she was awarded an OBE for her services to theatre, and in 2015 she was made a CBE in the New Year honours for services to the Arts. She has directed over 100 productions from the Royal Shakespeare Company to the Châtalet in Paris. In 2002 Jude founded Metal, which provides a platform where artistic hunches can be pursued in community contexts, with bases in Liverpool, Southend-On-Sea and Peterborough. Jude is a member of the London Cultural Strategy Group, and was part of the Cultural Olympiad which was responsible for the ongoing framework for delivering the creative, cultural and educational aspects of London’s Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2012. She created the WOW – Women of the World Festival in 2011, and it is now in its 5th year at Southbank Centre as well as taking place in other parts of the UK and in other countries all over the world.

Debbie Kilroy

Debbie Kilroy photoDebbie Kilroy OAM, MLB, GDFMenH, GDLPrac, BSocWk is a former prisoner and the CEO of Sisters Inside-an independent community organisation in Brisbane, Australia that advocates for the human rights of criminalised women. Kilroy is a strong, active advocate for the implementation and monitoring of human rights within women’s prisons and works against discriminatory practices. Kilroy has participated in several international meetings, including the expert meeting to develop the UN Rules for the Treatment of Women Prisoners and Non-Custodial Measures for Women Offenders (Bangkok Rules) and the Commission on the Status of Women sessions annually. She is the first person convicted of serious criminal offences admitted to practice law in Australia. Her expertise is in criminal defence law.

Jocelyn Klug

Jocelyn-KlugJocelyn Klug is the Secretary General of the Asia Oceania Federation of Sexology, the regional arm of the World Association of Sexual Health, and the immediate past chair of the Society of Australian Sexologists. Jocelyn sees her role as an accredited Clinical Sexologist and Relationship Therapist as being one of privilege, a unique position to work with individuals and couples who strive for satisfying and respectful sexual relationships. Jocelyn believes that the inability to adequately address sexual difficulties within a relationship impacts on communication, causing a decrease in emotional and sexual intimacy. The impact of this extends beyond the couple to family, friends and the broader community. Jocelyn is passionate about the regulation of professionals who work in the field sexual health and facilitating conversations on living healthy sexual lives. She is an advocate for equality, including the rights of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Queer minorities and a strong supporter of same-sex marriage. Jocelyn is a wife, mother of three and enamoured recent grandmother of one.

Krissy Kneen

Sandra-Phillips-Speaker-WOW-WOMEN-OF-THE-WORLD-FESTIVAL-BRISBANEKrissy Kneen is the award-winning author of the memoir Affection (Text Publishing Australia 2009 and Seal Press USA 2010) which was shortlisted for the Queensland Premier’s Literary Award in the non-fiction category, and the 2010 ABIA awards for Biography, Triptych: An Erotic Adventure (Text 2011), the literary fiction novel Steeplechase(Text 2013), and The Adventures of Holly White and the Incredible Sex Machine (Text 2015). In 2014 she won the prestigious Thomas Shapcott award for poetry for her poetry collection Eating My Grandmother (UQP 2015). She has written and directed short films and broadcast documentaries for SBS and ABC television and has had short stories published in literary journals, books and magazines including Griffith Review, Kill Your Darlings, Nerve.com, The Big Issue, Best Women’s Erotica 2014, Women of Letters and The Lifted Brow and The Great Unknown.

Amy Lamoin

Amy-LamoinAmy has around 15 years of professional experience in human rights policy and fieldwork. She has significant experience in policy development, systems building, field coordination, capacity building and monitoring. Her thematic expertise includes minority rights, child protection, cultural rights and gender equality. She has worked in various human rights and advocacy roles in Australia, the Asia Pacific, West Africa and the Middle East. Amy is currently the Chief Technical Adviser, UNICEF Australia. Prior to this she was a Child Protection Specialist for UNICEF on the Syrian border and responsible for coordinating child protection interventions for around 200,000 children.

Michelle Law

Michelle Law photoMichelle Law is a Brisbane writer whose work has appeared in Women of Letters (Penguin, 2011), Growing Up Asian in Australia (Black Inc., 2008), Destroying the Joint: Why Women Have to Change the World (UQP, 2013), and numerous Australian literary journals. She is an AWGIE award-winning screenwriter whose films have screened internationally and on the ABC. In 2014 she co-authored the comedy book Sh*t Asian Mothers Say (Black Inc.). In 2015, she is working on her first stage play with La Boite Theatre.

Kathy Lette

Kathy-Lette-WOW-Brisbane-2015-SpeakerKathy Lette first achieved success de scandal as a teenager with the novel Puberty Blues, which was made into a major film and a TV mini-series. After several years as a newspaper columnist and TV sitcom writer in America and Australia, she’s written 12 international bestsellers in her characteristic, witty voice, including Mad Cows, How to Kill Your Husband – and Other Handy Household Hints (staged by the Victorian opera), The Boy Who Fell to Earth and Courting Trouble. Kathy is an ambassador for Women and Children First, Plan International, the White Ribbon Alliance and the NAS. She lives in London with her husband and two children, and can often be found at The Savoy drinking a cocktail named after her. Kathy is an autodidact (a word she taught herself) but in 2010, received an honorary doctorate from Southampton Solent University. Visit Kathy’s website

Sandra Levy

Sandra-LevySandra Levy AO was appointed as CEO of AFTRS in mid 2007 following on from various roles including Director of Television at the ABC (2001 – 2005), Director of Development at Channel 9 (2006), Drama Producer at Southern Star (1989 – 2000) and Head of Drama at the ABC (1986 – 1989). Sandra has been an eminent television and feature film producer and a board member of significant arts and screen organisations including the Australian Film Finance Corporation, the Australian Film Commission, the Australian Television and Radio School, Deputy Chair of the Sydney Theatre Company and board member for the St James Ethics Centre and the FFC.  She was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from Macquarie University in 2010. In 2014, Sandra was made an Officer (AO) in the General Division for distinguished service to the arts as a film and television director and producer, and through strategic leaderships and educational roles.

Jade Lillie

Jade_colour smallJade Lillie is the Director & CEO of Footscray Community Arts Centre, Australia’s leading and longest running community engaged, contemporary arts centre. A passionate advocate for the arts and social justice, Jade is an experienced community cultural development practitioner, arts executive, educator and facilitator. She firmly believes that arts and cultural development, underpinned by sound engagement and social justice frameworks, are tools for social and systemic change. Jade’s work has taken her from regional and remote communities in Queensland and the Northern Territory to Northern Thailand and SE Asia. She has experience in government (Brisbane City Council, Arts Queensland) and non-Government contexts (SpeakOut, Contact Inc). In 2009, Jade was the recipient of the Kirk Robson Award and was recognised as a young cultural leader in community cultural development practice.

Vanessa Lussini

VThursday 5 February 2015. PhD researcher Vanessa Lussini has been shortlisted in the prestigious 2015 Aerospace Australia Limited Industry Innovation Awards for her work on a project to improve the safety of aircraft and reduce maintenance costs. Photo:QUT Marketing and Communication/Erika Fish. PH:0731385003.anessa Lussini from QUT’s school of Chemistry, Physics and Mechanical Engineering recently became the first women to win a prestigious Aerospace Australia Limited Industry Innovation Awards for her work to improve aircraft safety and reduce maintenance costs. Ms Lussini’s PhD project, being conducted under a scholarship from the Defence Materials Technology Centre, is focussed on using organic compounds to develop sensors to alert maintenance crews when sections of an aircraft need repainting before mechanical strain, direct sunlight, varying temperatures, water, salt and other pressures cause dangerous corrosion resulting in potentially catastrophic failure.

Mary-Rose MacColl

Mary-Rose-MacCollMary-Rose MacColl’s latest novel Swimming Home (October 2015) tells the story of a young Australian who joins the extraordinary women seeking to be the first to swim across the English Channel in the 1920s. Her last novel In Falling Snow tells the largely unknown story of a small group of Scottish women doctors who established a field hospital staffed entirely by women in an old abbey in France during World War I. MacColl holds degrees in journalism and creative writing. She writes a weekly column in The Courier-Mail’s Qweekend magazine.

Keelen Mailman

Keelen Mailman is the author of her own Memoir (The Power of Bones) published by Allen and Unwin 2014. Keelen speaks about a  troubled childhood of Sexual child abuse, domestic violence, racism growing up in a country town in western Queensland. She is recognised and celebrated in the Queensland Museum 2005 as the First Aboriginal Women to Manage a Cattle Property in Australia and still holds this position today 17 years later on her Traditional Bidjara Country with 190,000 aces. Keelen’s job title carry’s many things, from looking after significant cultural sites,to using chainsaw cutting down trees for posts and rails, fixing fences, servicing and fixing bores, putting out lick supplements for cattle. But the biggest passion and dedication for Keelen is her Culture and looking after Cultural Burial sites and so many others sites of significants on the property and to show that women can do the job as well as any man, if not better. Keelen was a Queensland finalist 2007 Australian of the Year and spent 3 years on the Board of the Australian Land Care Council where she was placed in the Indigenous Committee. Keelen is one of the ten Applicant’s of her Bidjara people, and sits on different boards. Keelen is the Chair of Bidjara Traditional Owners and one of two Director of South West Projects partnership owned Bigambul.

Sarah Mak

Sarah Headshot 1-2 (2)Imagine a world where distance and space are no obstacle to accessing and learning about global healthcare. That’s a world Sarah Mak is trying to create at TheStoryBoxes moving image studio, where her passion is to connect health, storytelling and innovation. With a background in Psychology from the University of Toronto, a Masters of International Public Health from the University of Queensland and a passion for photojournalism, Sarah’s journey has been vast and varied. A Canadian national, Sarah has been supporting children, educators and communities since 2000 as an Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) Consultant. With a passion for travel, Sarah worked as an ASD advisor at the Centre for Children and Adolescent Mental Health in Cambodia where she worked alongside healthcare providers and families learning about the impacts of health promotion in resource poor communities. Since moving to Australia, Sarah has worked in the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu supporting their National Vector Borne Disease Control Programs through health promotion campaigns. Additionally, she worked at the World Health Organisation within their Disability and Rehabilitation Department. Whilst at the WHO, Sarah also worked in the WHO Media and Communications, helping create short films for the 2011 inaugural World Report on Disability. This was her first exposure to using imagery and stories as a powerful and impactful communication tool. Whilst in the field, Sarah saw the power that visual mediums (such as drama, visual arts and photography) had in communicating health messages and starting dialogues that sparked change. The need to personalise these messages, to stir emotion and to connect were evident. It was here that TheStoryBoxes was born. Identifying a need to bridge the gap between health and media, Sarah started TheStoryBoxes two years ago, dedicated to producing cinematic, aesthetic and content rich stories that make an impact across all industries. Their ethos is to create bold stories that engage and connect audiences in innovative ways. Storytelling can evoke powerful empathic responses associated with specific neurochemicals, namely cortisol and oxytocin. These brain responses translate to concrete actions. In addition to creating award-winning storytelling content, Sarah and her team are also developing interactive technology and digital experiences such as virtual and augmented reality to not only connect patients and healthcare workers but to also merge the physical and digital spaces through technology. They’re on a mission to redefine how industries interact with emerging technology, by creating beautiful, intelligent and collaborative digital experiences. Whether it be game-ifying education and training through rich digital experience, or improving the quality of life for those in need, TheStoryBoxes aim to be led by their ideas first, and challenge technology to catch up.

Sandra Mau

NICTA_Sandra MauSandra is the CEO and Founder of TrademarkVision, a disruptive startup at the forefront of visual brand protection. TrademarkVision developed the world’s first visual search engine for trademarks and logos using proprietary image recognition technology. Prior to this startup, Sandra was a Senior Computer Vision Research Engineer at NICTA doing R&D in computer vision, machine learning, and mobile projects. She has also worked professionally as a Commercialisation Analyst in technology transfer where she helped researchers protect their IP and commercialise their innovation. Sandra is very active in supporting the local tech community. She was the Founding Chair of IEEE QLD Women in Engineering, a speaker at the Committee for Economic Development Australia (CEDA) Women in Leadership Forum, and listed as one of Australia’s Top 50 Female Programmers by Pollenizer. She’s a regular participant in hackathons including past GovHacks and International Women’s Day. She holds a BASc in Aerospace Engineering from University of Toronto, a MS in Robotics from CMU, and an MBA from QUT.

Wendy McCarthy

wendy mccarthyWendy McCarthy is an experienced manager and company director who began her career as a secondary school teacher. She moved out of the classroom into public life in 1968 and since then has been an advocate, educator and change agent in Australia and internationally. She currently chairs headspace – Australia’s National Youth Mental Health Foundation, Circus Oz, and McGrath Estate Agents, and is a Non-executive director of Goodstart Early Learning and IMF Bentham. She has held many significant leadership roles in leading national and international bodies including eight years as Deputy Chair of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. In 2009 after 13 years of service to Plan International, she retired from her role as Global Vice Chair. In 2005 she completed a decade as Chancellor of the University of Canberra. In 1995 she established her national consulting business McCarthy Mentoring which specialised in providing mentors to major corporations, the public sector and not for profit organisations. In July 2012 her daughter Sophie McCarthy took over the business and she now works for her when invited. In 1989 she was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia for outstanding contributions to community affairs, women’s affairs and the Bicentennial celebrations. In 2003 she was awarded a Centenary of Federation medal for business leadership and in 2005 she was nominated by the Sydney Morning Herald as one of Australia’s Top 100 Public Intellectuals. In 2011 she was featured in the IWD publication The Power of One which profiled 100 women who have shaped Australia. In March 2013 she was inducted into the Women’s Agenda Hall of Fame for her contribution to the lives of Australian women. She likes writing and speaking and is the author of 7 books including her memoir Don’t Fence Me In published by Random House in 2000.

Dominic McGann

Dominic-McGannIn his working life, Dominic McGann is the Chairman of Partners of McCullough Robertson Lawyers, the Chair of the Brisbane Writers Festival, a director of Flagship Investments Limited and Australian National Development Index Limited and a Queensland Male Champion of Change. In his personal life, Dominic is one of 7 brothers and 1 sister, is happily married and the proud father of 1 daughter and 3 sons. Importantly, much of his approach to his professional life is informed by the lessons he received as a young boy in the sandpit and his wife and children regard his education as a work in progress.

Kelly McIntyre

Kelly_print_9544 (2)SMALLBarrister-at-Law President, Women Lawyers Association of Queensland Chair, Australian Maritime Law Association of Australia and New Zealand, Qld Chapter Kelly is a Barrister and mediator that practices in the area of Building & Construction, Energy & Resources, Corporate & Commercial, Insurance and Personal Injuries. She is the President of the Women Lawyers Association of Queensland and Chair of the Australian Maritime Law Association of Australia and New Zealand, Qld Chapter. She regularly speaks at conferences and events across Queensland advocating for the interests of women in the legal profession and the need for gender diversity.

Natasha Mitchell

Natasha Mitchell croppedNatasha Mitchell hosts the national, daily morning show, Life Matters, on ABC Radio National (ABC RN). She was the founding presenter & producer of the popular science, psychology & culture radio program, All in the Mind, from 2002-12. Natasha served as a board member and then vice president of the World Federation of Science Journalists between 2009-13. Her broadcast work has received accolades internationally, including the overall Grand Prize and 4 Gold World Medals at the New York Radio Festivals, among other awards. Natasha was recipient of a Knight Fellowship at MIT/Harvard in 2005-6, and a Marine Biological Laboratory Journalism Fellowship at Woods Hole. She served on the National Health and Medical Research Council’s Human Genetics Advisory Committee from 2009-11. In 2005, she hosted and coproduced the series, Parched Lands, with the BBC World Service. Natasha has an engineering degree from Monash University, a postgraduate diploma in science communication from the ANU, and her first foray into radio was hosting a punk music show on her university radio station. She regularly chairs public debates and forums around Australia, including her third science dialogue with the Dalai Lama and guests in 2013. She was co-editor of the anthology, Best Australian Science Writing 2013.

Lisa Mumbin

Godinymayin Yijard Rivers Arts and Culture Centre Opening, Katherine 14 July 2012. photo Shane Eecen. Lisa was born and raised in Katherine and she is a Jawoyn representative on the Godinymayin Yijard Rivers Arts and Culture Centre Board of Directors. Lisa’s traditional country is Jawoyn country. Lisa has been involved in Godinymayin over many years to provide cultural assistance throughout the development of the centre. Lisa’s focus is on cultural maintenance, women’s support and youth and in addition to the Godinymayin board she is involved in many organisations such Kalano Community Association, Wurli Wurlinjang Health Service, the Northern Land Council and the NLC Women’s group and ABA Board. Lisa is currently Chair of the Jawoyn Association. Lisa’s involvement in these organisations and committees helps her to provide strong representation and support to her people and help future generations learn the importance of leadership in their communities.

Llane Munau

Llane Munau Photo (2)Llane Munau is the Director of the Bougainville film for the Pawa Meri documentary series of 6 x 26 min films about women leaders in PNG. Llane is from Arawa in Bougainville Province. She currently lives in Goroka and works with the National Film Institute as the Director of Photography. Llane graduated with a Bachelor in Journalism from Divine Word University in Madang, her final year dissertation on the rise and decline of cinematography in PNG. She is passionate about the history of films in PNG and the role that early films played in uniting a country of over 800 cultures and languages. Llane is a self-taught filmmaker and is used to filling all the production roles herself. This is the first directing role were she will be working work with a crew. Llane is looking forward to learning from and collaborating with the production team. She has been passionate about film and television from an early age and feels being part of a group of Papua New Guinea women filmmakers in this project is very encouraging.

Ms Naughty

msnaughty_librarian_fullsize (2)Ms. Naughty is a feminist erotic filmmaker and writer. She has been making and curating porn for straight women online since 2000. Her erotic films have screened at several international film festivals including Cinekink and the Berlin Porn Film Festival and she has won several awards for her films. She has a chapter detailing her work in “The Feminist Porn Book”, edited by Tristan Taormino et al.. Her fiction has featured in several editions of “Best Women’s Erotica”. She runs BrightDesire.com, an adult site that features all her films. It recently won the Best Website Award at the Feminist Porn Awards in Toronto. She is also the founder of ForTheGirls.com, one of the oldest adult sites for straight women on the web. She has blogged regularly about women, feminism, porn and censorship since 2004 at msnaughty.com/blog/ (Note: All of her sites are NSFW.)

Kathleen Noonan

Kathleen NooKN BIO PIC (2)nan is a journalist and columnist with a longstanding interest in what makes a society fair – for everyone. She writes a weekly column ‘’Last Word’’ in Saturday’s Courier-Mail, which has appeared in newspapers throughout Australia. She is on the committee of Second Chance, the only charity in Australia that raises money exclusively for homeless women. It also helps fund the work of Queensland’s domestic violence shelters.

Kristina Olsson

Kris 2 IMAGESMALLKristina Olsson is a Brisbane-based writer and journalist whose books include Kilroy Was Here, the biography of prison activist Debbie Kilroy, and the award-winning novel The China Garden. Her fourth book, Boy, Lost, a family memoir, published in 2013, won the NSW and West Australian Premiers’ Awards for non-fiction, the Queensland Literary Award for non-fiction and the Kibble Prize for women writers, and was shortlisted for the Stella Prize and many others. She is working on a new novel.

June Oscar AO

June-Oscar-WOW-Brisbane-2015-SpeakerJune is the Chief Executive Officer of Marninwarntikura Fitzroy Women’s Resource Centre and a proud Bunuba woman from the remote town of Fitzroy Crossing. June is a champion for Indigenous Australian languages, social justice, women’s issues and Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder. In 2007, she fought successfully for alcohol restrictions in Fitzroy Crossing. Her focus on Aboriginal children and her determination that we do not sacrifice the health of children for the ‘right’ to buy full strength take-away alcohol, made her a role model for all Australia. In 2011, in an article appearing in The Age and Sydney Morning Herald June was named as one of the 50 most influential women in the world for her work in improving the lives of those living in remote Aboriginal communities. June is co-founder of the Yiramalay Wesley Studio School and in 2012 she was appointed as an Ambassador for Children and Young People by Western Australian Commissioner for Children and Young People, Michelle Scott. In 2013 she was awarded an Order of Australia (AO) in the Queen’s Birthday honours. June was the winner of the Westpac and Financial Review 100 Women of Influence 2013 for Social Enterprise and Not for Profit Category.In 2014 June was awarded the Menzies School of Health Research Medallion for her work with Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.

Rhianna Patrick

RhiannaFitzpatrick-photo version2Rhianna Patrick is a Torres Strait Islander woman who spent most of her early life growing up in the bauxite mining community of Weipa on Queensland’s Cape York before her parents made the move back to her birth place of Brisbane. Rhianna joined the ABC in 2002 as a news and current affairs cadet based in the Sydney newsroom. Since then she’s worked in the ABC Tropical North newsroom (Mackay), as the breakfast newsreader for triple j news and as a Researcher/Associate Producer on ABC TV’s now retired Indigenous documentary programme, Message Stick. Rhianna spent five years as the Presenter of the national Indigenous radio programme, Speaking Out, and has worked as a fill in presenter on Afternoons (612 ABC Brisbane) and RN’s national Indigenous arts and culture radio programme, Awaye! In 2015, she was given her own national Local radio programme which was named after her and subsequently has been nicknamed #ABCRhi as she finds it too weird calling the programme “Rhianna”. In her spare time, Rhianna pursues her avid avgeek intentions and also co-presents an ABC digital radio programme, CanvasWings with her husband (and former Speaking Out producer), David White. The programme covers vintage aircraft, Australian aviation history and anyone restoring this heritage worldwide.

Courtney Pederson

Harvest Opening weekend public program We Need To Talk: Feminism and Food Maiwar Green, GOMA Reflect on the relationship between women and food within a contemporary art context, in conversation with members of Brisbane’s LEVEL artist-run initiative and 'Harvest' exhibition curator Ellie Buttrose. Bring along a special recipe or food story to share over a picnic and take the opportunity to connect with local feminist arts practitioners. LEVEL is an artist-run-initiative and feminist collective, co-founded in 2010 by Courtney Coombs, Rachael Haynes and Alice Lang, and joined by Caitlin Franzmann, Anita Holtsclaw and Courtney Pedersen in 2013. LEVEL focuses on providing opportunities for female visual artists and generating dialogue around gender, feminism and contemporary art. This manifests in artist residencies, exhibition projects and exchanges, forums and critical discussions. Informing our approach are models of collaboration and collectivity and a commitment to critical engagement with the diversity of women’s contemporary arts practices. By strengthening relationships between artists, writers and curators, LEVEL seeks to provide a new platform for discussion; LEVELing the playing field. Dr Courtney Pedersen is the Head of Discipline for Visual Arts and Senior Lecturer in Art History/Theory at QUT. Her research interests include gender, creative practice-led research, and visual arts pedagogy. She completed her PhD, an exploration of feminism, genealogy, and social history through public installation art, in 2005. Prior to that she was a practicing artist for over 10 years, having studied photography at the Victorian College of the Arts in the early 1990s. Her work has been exhibited at the National Gallery of Victoria, the Museum of Brisbane, and in numerous Artist-Run Initiatives. Courtney has been writing for the arts press in Australia since the mid 1990s and worked as the Research Officer for the advocacy organisation, Artworkers Alliance in 2001-2. She has been a member of the reviews editorial team for the peer-reviewed Australian and New Zealand Journal of Art. Courtney is currently a co-director of the feminist artist collective LEVEL, and a board member for Eyeline Publishing and Boxcopy Contemporary Art Space in Brisbane. Coinciding with WOW, Courtney has guest curated Quaternary—an exhibition that surveys women graduates of QUT Visual Arts whose works utilise the affective power of colour in compelling ways—for QUT Art Museum.

Mary Philip

Mary Philip photoMary Philip has been reviewing and judging books for twenty years. She is currently a judge for the Queensland Literary Awards, on the Non Fiction panel. She also facilitated bookclubs at Riverbend Books for five years. But more importantly, she has been reading books all her life.

Dr Sandra Phillips

Sandra-Phillips-Speaker-WOW-WOMEN-OF-THE-WORLD-FESTIVAL-BRISBANE Dr Sandra R. Phillips lectures in the Creative Industries Faculty at Queensland University of Technology. Located in the School of Media, Entertainment, and Creative Arts, Sandra delivers curriculum for Creative Writing and Literary Studies. As an industry-trained book editor, Sandra previously worked with Aboriginal Studies Press, University of Queensland Press, and Magabala Books. Published editor of Racism, Representation, and Photography (1994) and Fresh Cuttings (2003), Sandra’s next publication is chapter, ‘Writing Ourselves: pastpresentfuture’ in Knowledge of Life: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australia (forthcoming September, 2015). Sandra has held many arts and culture leadership roles including Trustee of the Queensland Performing Arts Trust Board (2000-2002) and Deputy Chair of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Arts Board, Australia Council (2000-2002). Sandra is currently a director of the board of industry body for contemporary Indigenous dance, BlakDance (2014-), and is literary judge on the annual David Unaipon Award for unpublished Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander writers (2013-).

Hannah Pool

Hannah-Pool-WOW-Brisbane-2015-SpeakerEritrean born journalist, author and commentator Hannah Pool writes regularly in the national and international media. Hannah has written features, interviews and comment for the Guardian for over a decade. Hannah’s work also appears in The Times, The Sunday Times, The Grazia, The Independent, ARISE magazine and others. Hannah is curator of talks and debates at the Women of the World (WOW) and Africa Utopia festivals at the Southbank Centre and is Chair of UKFeminista. Hannah’s book, My Fathers’ Daughter: A story of family and belonging is a memoir of her journey back to Eritrea to find her birth family. Published in the UK (Penguin), the US (Free Press), France, and Holland to critical acclaim, My Fathers’ Daughter was described by the Washington Post as “a significant and moving book.” A regular contributor to BBC Radio, a speaker at TedXEuston, Africa Writes and Africa Gathering, Hannah was the subject of CNN’s African Voices. Visit Hannah’s website. Hannah Pool appears at WOW Brisbane in association with the Brisbane Writers Festival‘s Inspire Festival Brisbane-Writers-Festival

Jenna Price

Jenna Price photoJenna Price is an activist, journalist and academic. Her parents were refugees, which shaped her views on social justice. Jenna began her working career as a cadet reporter at the Sydney Morning Herald in 1982 and moved to the Canberra Times in 1994 as its Sydney correspondent. In 2008, she started work at the University of Technology and is now a senior lecturer who teaches journalism, social media and communication. She writes two columns a week for Fairfax, mostly in a blind fury at heartless decisions made by politicians. In 2012, Jenna cofounded the online feminist action group, Destroy The Joint, to fight sexism and misogyny. Not quite as easy as you might think. There are now 65000 Destroyers who campaign on a range of issues but mostly in three key feminist areas: violence against women, the gendered pay gap and the increasing impoverishment of vulnerable women. Destroyers have successfully conducted a boycott against Sydney radio presenter Alan Jones, persuaded Telstra to provide free private numbers to women who are victims of family violence and persuaded the federal government to overturn cuts to community legal centres. But feminism is ongoing life work and the campaign to stop violence against women in never-ending. In 2014, with the guidance of British campaigner Karen Ingala Smith who began this campaign, Destroy the Joint founded Counting Dead Women Australia, a project to identify every single woman killed through violence. As of June 4, 2015, 41 women were killed violently this year. Jenna is married with three adult children but no grandchildren. She’s working on it. She has absolutely no spare time but feel free to ask her to do stuff.

Naomi Price

NAOMI PRICE headshot (2)Naomi Price is one of Australia’s leading cabaret and music theatre performers, best known for her performances as pop icon Adele in Rumour Has It and twerk superstar Miley in Wrecking Ball; both award-winning shows written together with Adam Brunes for their production house the little red company touring nationally for the past two years. Originally from England, her extensive performance credits include Wrecking Ball (the little red company), Rumour Has It (the little red company), Gloria (Queensland Theatre Company), The Wishing Well (La Boite Theatre Company/Matrix Theatre), Twilight Concert Series (Brisbane Festival), The Class of 69 (Harbour Agency – national tour), Women in Voice 20 (Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts), and national tours for shake & stir theatre co with Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, Hamlet, Bard to the Bone, Say it To My Facebook, Chop Logic, Vacant and Tragic Magic. Music theatre credits include iconic roles in Jesus Christ Superstar, The Last Five Years,  Songs for a New World, Into the Woods, Rent, and Tell Me on a Sunday. Naomi has also provided backing vocals for artists such as Guy Sebastian, Marina Prior, Troy Cassar-Daley, Luke Kennedy and Max Pellicano. In addition to Naomi’s work as a performer, she is also an experienced producer, production manager and director. Production highlights include projects for the little red company (Wrecking Ball, Rumour Has It and How To Make Snow), The Ten Tenors (US, Australia and Europe), Queensland Performing Arts Centre, Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts (including Acting Program Manager), The Danger Ensemble, The Good Room, Roundhouse Theatre, and Luke Kennedy (Australian tour). Upcoming onstage performances include the little red company’s Wrecking Ball at QUT Gardens Point Theatre for WOW Festival in June, Rumour Has It for Queensland Theatre Company in July, a double bill of Wrecking Ball and Rumour Has It for the Arts Centre Gold Coast in September, and Ladies in Black for Queensland Theatre Company in November.

Kate Rowland

Kate Rowland photo smallKate Rowland, Creative Producer, Director, 2015 Executive Producer and lead on The Last Hours of Laura K, and the Original Drama Shorts. She was the BBC’s Creative Director, New Writing, where she founded BBC Writersroom a pioneering writers resource to champion talent and develop writers for production across television, radio and film for Drama, Comedy and Children’s programmes, she created the TV Drama Writers’ Festival and commissioned The Wire, a radical new writing strand on R3. She led on the Diversity strategy for BBC TV. Kate was Head of BBC Radio Drama, a multi award winning director for theatre, radio and short film, and has worked with many writers: Lee Hall, Jack Thorne, Roy Williams, Mark Ravenhill, Jeanette Winterson, and Tony Marchant. She joined the BBC following experience in education/ theatre: Manchester University, Altered States Theatre Co (which she founded), the Gate and the Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse Theatres.

Professor Julianne Schultz

Professor Julianne Schultz AM FAHA is the founding editor of Griffith Review. Professor Schultz is a member of the Griffith Centre for Creative Arts Research and chairs the Australian Film, Television and Radio School. She sits on the editorial board of The Conversation and is a member of the Australia Council for the Arts’ Pool of Peers. She is an acclaimed author of several books, including Reviving the Fourth Estate (Cambridge) and Steel City Blues (Penguin), and the librettos to the operas Black River and Going Into Shadows. She became a Member of the Order of Australia for services to journalism and the community in 2009 and an honorary fellow of the Australian Academy of Humanities the following year. She is a thought leader on media and culture and an accomplished public speaker and facilitator. She has served on the board of directors of the ABC and Grattan Institute, and chaired and been a member of many advisory boards with a particular focus on education, journalism and creativity, including the Centre for Advancing Journalism, A Companion to the Australian Media, the National Cultural Policy reference group and the Queensland Design Council.

Joan Sheldon

Joan Sheldon photoJoan Sheldon is best known as being a former Deputy Premier Treasurer and Minister for the Arts in Queensland from the beginning of February 1996 until the end of June 1998. She was the first woman in Queensland to hold this position and the first woman in Australia to be appointed Treasurer. She was also the first woman to lead a political in Queensland when she was elected as leader of the liberal party in 1991, a position she held for seven years. She was born in Bundaberg where her grandfather was mayor, was educated at Soubirous College Scarborough and subsequently went to the University of Queensland to become a physiotherapist, owning a number of private practices. She also obtained her licentiate in speech and drama from Trinity College of London and taught speech and drama for some years. Joan has held a number of board positions since her retirement: inaugural Executive-in-Residence for the Australian Institute of Management; fellow of the Australian Institute of Management and the Australian Institute of Company Directors; Chairman of the Sunshine Coast Events Centre, the Queensland Ballet and St. Leo’s College at the University of Queensland; and Director of Forestry Plantations Queensland. In 2008 she was appointed an Adjunct Professor in the School of Business at the Sunshine Coast University and Chair of the Queensland Community Fund board for the Sunshine Coast. Joan was appointed as the inaugural Ethics and Integrity Officer for the Local Government Association of Queensland in 2011. She has been happily married to her husband John for 46 years and has three sons two of whom are lawyers like their father and the youngest is an economist who is now an investment banker.

Lauren Shuttleworth

laurenbiopic (2)cropped smallLauren Shuttleworth is a social entrepreneur and the Founder and Director of Words With Heart – an eco-friendly stationery social enterprise that funds women’s and girls’ education projects. While undertaking a volunteer position at a school in Kenya that Lauren saw first hand the obstacles faced by girls seeking to go to school, and she returned to Australia determined to make an impact. Since launching the company in September, she has gone on to build a strong customer base, forged several corporate partnerships and is currently negotiating a supply deal with a large Australian retailer. Lauren is passionate about empowering women and girls, and about using the model of social enterprise to create incredible change in the world.

Dale Spender

dale-spenderDale Spender is a professional feminist who has written / edited thirty books on aspects of women and language – spoken and written. She is currently completing her latest, which she believes is an underlying and insidious contributor to women’s inequality; A MAN’S WORD counts for more than a woman’s; How did this happen and how can we change it?

Dr Shannon Spriggs Murdoch

Shannon-Spriggs-Murdoch-WOW-Brisbane-2015-SpeakerDr Shannon Spriggs Murdoch has spent the last eleven years with Griffith University’s Mentors in Violence Prevention (MVP) program delivering and developing training across the U.S., in Australia and around the world. She is currently a Research Fellow with the Violence Research and Prevention program at Griffith University in Brisbane, Australia. Since 2010, she has directed the adaptation and delivery of the MVP curriculum, training of trainers, and furthered the introduction of MVP training in Australia. From 2006-2010 she was the Assistant Director for the MVP National program in the U.S. In that role, she was responsible for the day-to-day operations of the program, as well as training delivery and coordination. Shannon has facilitated over 700 training sessions with various groups, including high school and university students and staff, professional athletes, businessmen and women, educators, social service providers and military service members. She also has significant experience developing trainers in the MVP curriculum. She has facilitated dozens of Train-the-Trainer programs, including work as a consultant with the U.S. Military and Australian Army. In 2009, she was part of a team that spent two weeks in Iraq conducting trainings for service members currently in theatre. Shannon received her Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration with a focus on Student Development from Boston College in 2007.

Caroline Stalker

Caroline Stalker photoCaroline is a highly skilled designer, communicator and leader of teams for complex architectural, master planning and urban design projects. Her career spans 27 years and a range of project types, including new communities, city and town centres, universities, public spaces, public buildings, mixed use and multi-residential buildings. Throughout her career Caroline has demonstrated a sustained passion for enhancing people’s lives through better design, focusing strongly on cities. This has been recognised over the years through numerous architecture and planning awards. Caroline has served on and chaired awards juries in both architecture and urban design, and held advisory roles for government. She is a regular speaker promoting the value of design excellence and urban design thinking. Caroline is proud to lead one of the few larger architectural practices in the southern hemisphere which has a gender –balanced directorate, and works to support increasing participation of women at senior levels in architecture and urban design.

Lynne Strong

Lynne Strong Bio pix smallAt its peak Lynne Strong’s award winning family farming operation proudly provided the milk for 50,000 Australian breakfasts every day. Lynne’s role as the powerhouse behind the business has seen her win some of agriculture’s most prestigious awards including the inaugural Bob Hawke Landcare Award, the National Landcare Primary Producer Award, as well as being both a Eureka Prize and Banksia Award finalist. Lynne has a vision for agriculture to be the strong, prosperous and vibrant building block underpinning the health and happiness of Australia’s landscape and people. To help achieve this Lynne is now harnessing her experience and personal fire to ignite and uplift the leaders of the future. Under the banner of Picture You in Agriculture, Lynne has brought together a team of experts to help young people develop the innovative ideas, tools and relationships they need to create the next exciting chapter in the future of Australia’s agri-sector.

Leigh Tabrett

Leigh-TabrettLeigh Tabrett PSM has been a senior public servant in education and in the arts, and has been an advisor to State and Federal Governments in both policy areas. She has worked on affirmative action for women, and on access and equity for people under-represented in the university sector. An experienced Board member and keen student of leadership, she now works as a leadership coach, business consultant and as commentator on arts and cultural policy. Leigh’s involvement with WOW reflects a lifetime of advocacy for women and women’s access to education, and the fact that she is the mother of two daughters. As Director of non profit company Of One Mind, Leigh is working with the Southbank Centre London to develop Women of the World (WOW) Festivals in Australia and the Asia Pacific. Leigh is one of the Executive Producers of WOW Brisbane in June 2015 and involved in the early stages of planning WOW Commonwealth for 2018.

Andrea Tame

Growing up on a dairy farm, Andrea logically intended to pursue a path as a veterinarian but was encouraged to consider joining the defence force by a close friend. With no background in aviation in her family, she was successful in joining the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) as an Air Traffic Control Officer, and was posted to Townsville after her basic training. While working in Townsville she started taking some flying lessons to improve her professional knowledge, caught the flying bug. She applied to become a pilot in the RAAF. On her second attempt, she was successful and trained on PC9 aircraft at RAAF Pearce, Western Australia. Following graduation, she was posted to 37 Squadron at RAAF Richmond to fly the C130 Hercules in a variety of roles including tactical flying, aeromedical evacuation, search and rescue and operational deployments. She also trained with the United States Air Force as an air accident investigator and spent time in that role working in the Directorate of Defence Aviation and Air Force Safety. She left the RAAF in 2007 at the rank of Squadron Leader to fly 176-seat Boeing 737-800 aircraft with Virgin Australia. Her current role is as a Check and Training Captain on the Embraer E190 jet.

Ranjeny Thomas

Ranjeny clinical photo 2013 (2)Ranjeny Thomas is clinical Rheumatologist at Princess Alexandra Hospital and head of the Immunology programme at the University of Queensland Diamantina Institute. She did a research fellowship with Peter Lipsky in Dallas, Texas and has been a full Professor at UQ since 2003. Her research is focussed on the study of autoimmune disease and restoration of tolerance. Through this work, she developed and tested the first rheumatoid arthritis vaccine. She has also contributed major insights into the pathogenesis of spondyloarthropathies and autoimmune diabetes, leading to the development of disease biomarkers and therapeutic strategies. Ranjeny is founder and a director of the spin-off company, Dendright, which is developing vaccines to suppress autoimmune diseases.

Aviva Tuffield

Aviva Tuffield photoAviva Tuffield is executive director and co-founder of the Stella Prize, a major literary award celebrating and promoting Australian women’s writing. She is also a publisher at Affirm Press and has worked in publishing for almost twenty years. She was previously associate publisher at Scribe Publications, where she was responsible for building an award-winning Australian fiction list; and prior to that she was deputy editor of Australian Book Review. She regularly appears on panels at writers’ festivals and at publishing-related conferences. She has written literary journalism and opinion pieces for a number of publications including The Age, Sydney Morning Herald, Australian Book Review and the Times Literary Supplement. In 2015 she was a finalist in NAB Women’s Agenda Leadership Awards in the Change Champion category for her work with the Stella Prize.

Dr Casta Tungaraza

Dr Casta Tungaraza comes from Tanzania and migrated to Australia over twenty years ago. She was a lecturer of Development Studies at the University of Dar-Es-Salaam in Tanzania and achieved her Doctorate degree in International Politics from Flinders University in South Australia. She holds a Bachelor of Arts (with Honours) in International Relations and a Master of Arts Degree in Development Studies. She joined the Murdoch University’s Politics Department as a Research Fellow and later was appointed as the University’s Equal Opportunity and Social Justice Manager. She is also the Director of the Australian Academy of Race Relations at Murdoch University. As the founding member of the African Women’s Council of Australia she would like to see the advancement of African women and children in Australia and foster their contribution to the development of Australia by achieving equal participation in social, economic and political life. She is the former Chairperson of the African Community in WA, the President of the Tanzanian Community in WA, and she is currently an Executive Member of the Federation of the African Communities Council of Australia (FACC) which is a national body. Casta has served and continues to serve on a number of Government Advisory Boards for more than ten years – such as the Australian Multicultural Advisory Council (Federal), the Western Australian Citizenship and Multicultural Advisory Council (WACMAC), the Federation of Ethnic Communities Council of Australia’s New and Emerging Communities Policy Advisory Committee (National), and the WA Government’s Anti-racism Strategy Steering Group. She is a member of the WA’s Multicultural Advisory Group to the Minister for Citizenship and Multicultural Interests. The Multicultural Advisory Group plays a key role in contributing to the State Government’s vision to build an inclusive and cohesive society which draws on its cultural and linguistic diversity to enhance the social, economic and cultural development of the State. Dr Tungaraza is currently the Director of the Australian Institute of Kiswahili Language and African Culture. She speaks five languages and takes interest in cultural diversity matters.

Jane Turner

Jane Turner is best known as cJane-Turnero-creator of the multi-award winning comedy series “Kath & Kim”, and for her portrayal of the foxy Kath Day-Knight.  The show premièred on ABC TV in 2002, and quickly became an icon of Australian popular culture. The fourth series, which began on Channel 7 in 2007, attracted an Australian audience of 2.521 million, making it (at the time) the highest rating first episode in the history of Australian television. Kath & Kim has become a pop culture phenomenon, and is a success with audiences nationwide. Internationally, the series has spawned a cult fanbase, and an American version has now been made. The show has been nominated for a British Comedy Award, has won an Australian Comedy Award and three Logies for “Outstanding Comedy Programme” and two AFI awards for “Best Television Drama Series”.

Regina Turner

ReginaTurnerMy name is Regina Turner (nee Dorante), I was born on Thursday Island, the last of seven children. My family consists of five girls and two boys. I am a proud Zenath Kes (Torres Strait Islander), Wagadagam, woman, married, working mother of three and grandmother to six children. I grew up in Weipa, Cairns, Thursday Island and Hammond Island, my father’s community. My mother is from St Pauls Mission, Moa Island. I have recently been appointed with Torres Strait Regional Authority, Culture, Arts and Heritage Program as Acting Cultural Development Officer. Prior to this, I accomplished twelve months experience in aged care sector, providing clients with home care packages and assist carers with respite services. With over 25 years of knowledge and experience in education and training sector, ranging from corporate to teaching, business development and project management. My parents instilled in us, that Education is the key to success. I have been a voluntary board member for several community organisations, fulfilling office bearer positions with Mura Kosker Sorority Inc, Lena Passi Women’s Shelter Inc, Torres Strait Youth & Recreational Sporting Association Inc, since 1992 and more recently founded Kirriri Dorge Mudh Indigenous Corporation. Elected as President in 2011 with Mura Kosker Sorority Inc, Torres Strait Islands peak women’s organisation. The organisation was established in 1986, it aims to prevent domestic and family violence, and promotes healthy and safe communities. In 2010, I successfully completed Diploma of Government with TAFE Qld, which encompasses indigenous government employees in Qld Public Service leadership positions. Topics included, managing performance, support coaching and mentoring, and facilitating change. A founding member and elected Secretary/ Treasurer with Kirriri Dorge Mudh Indigenous Corporation, which means Hammond Island Work House. This established community-based organisation aims to maintain and revitalise Torres Strait cultural traditional practices through planned events, and support economic development initiatives for artists/crafts persons and whole of community. When I am not with family and community, I am supporting my husband who is self-employed artist and operates his small business from our home. I volunteer my time as an arts assistant, sales and marketing, customer service and maintaining his financials. My short term goal is to organise a family re-union (paternal and maternal) with my siblings and extended families, and continue to work with my community to achieve the goals of Kirriri Dorge Mudh Indigenous Corporation, for the betterment of our children and Hammond Island community. I am currently undertaking the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation, 17 months program, and will be attending our very first workshop in Kununurra, Kimberley, Western Australia, from 18-30 May 2015.

Larissa Waters

Larissa Waters photo smallLarissa Waters is the first Australian Greens Senator for Queensland. She took office in July 2011 and is the national spokesperson on Environment and Biodiversity; Women; Resources, Mining and CSG. Senator Waters is an environmental lawyer who worked in the community sector for 9 years advising people how to use the law to protect the environment. In 2011 she was named Australian Young Environmental Lawyer of the Year 2010 by the Law Council of Australia. She is passionate about protecting our environment and public participation, equality for women, and accountability in government. In the Senate she is working to improve federal laws to better protect the Great Barrier Reef, promote renewable energy, and protect good quality agricultural land from incompatible land uses. She lives in Brisbane with her five year old daughter.

Anne-Frances Watson

Anne-Frances-WatsonDr Anne-Frances (Anne) Watson is a Lecturer in Media & Communication in the Creative Industries Faculty at Queensland University of Technology. Anne’s PhD research project examined what young people know about sex and sexuality, and established where they are finding or receiving that information. Anne’s research areas of interest are sex and sexuality, adolescent sexuality, sexuality education, with a particular interest in mediated sexuality and the media as a source of sexuality information.

Janet Wiles

Janet Wiles photoJanet Wiles’ research program involves bio-inspired computation in complex systems, with applications in cognitive science and biorobotics. She completed a PhD in Computer Science at the University of Sydney, a postdoctoral fellowship in Psychology at the University of Queensland, and served as faculty in the Cognitive Science program for 12 years. In 2003 she formed the Complex and Intelligent Systems research group at the University of Queensland where she has been Professor since 2006. She currently coordinates the UQ node of the ARC Centre of Excellence for the Dynamics of Language, where her research focusses on robots and language.

Narissa Wilson

narissaWilson photo smallThe founder and managing director of Narie Creations, Narissa is a leader, designer, networker, facilitator and passionate foodie. She has experienced rural and remote living first hand being born and raised in the mining town of Mount Isa. In 2009 she graduated with a Bachelor of Information Technology (e-commerce & design) and has since led highly productive teams through the daily production of online media and design. Narissa is deeply passionate about people with disabilities having valued roles. She is committed to challenging preconceived attitudes and stigmas of people with disabilities.

Suzy Wilson

Photofor MediaSuzyWilson (2)Suzy Wilson is the owner of Riverbend Books and Teahouse in Oxford St, Bulimba. Riverbend Books has won the Australian Independent Bookshop of the Year Award twice; and the Queensland Independent Bookshop of the Year 7 times. Suzy has received the Dromkeen Award for her efforts in ‘being a catalyst in changing children’s lives through literature”. In 2012 she was appointed as an Ambassador for the National Year of Reading. In this role she worked closely with local schools and parent groups, running workshops about literacy in the early childhood years. Suzy is the founder of, and sits on the board of the national Indigenous Literacy Foundation, which aims to improve literacy for children living in remote Indigenous communities. In 2014 she was honoured in the Australia Day Awards, winning the Queensland’s Local Hero award.

Soniya D. Yambem

Soniya photo smallSoniya D. Yambem is a Vice-Chancellor’s research fellow at QUT. Soniya is a device physicist with extensive experience in fabricating flexible electronic devices. Before joining QUT she worked on CSIRO’s flagship cluster project in flexible electronics at the University of Queensland. In her current role as a VC Fellow at QUT, Soniya is working with a team of highly acclaimed scientists from diverse fields such as tissue engineering, 3-D printing and organic chemistry to pursue her passion in developing the next generation of wearable electronic technology for medical applications.