Keynote Speakers


Hon Trish White

National President and Chair of the Board of Engineers Australia

Trish is National President and Chair of the Board of Engineers Australia.  A professional company director, she serves on the boards of CHL group of companies and chairs boards in the insurance, property, manufacturing and university sectors. As an executive director of professional services and business advisory firm, Slingsby Taylor, she provides business advisory services to boards and executives of both commercial and not-for-profit organisations.

Formerly, Trish was Executive Strategic Advisor for WorleyParsons Ltd, working in the global resources and energy industries. That followed a career as a cabinet minister in the South Australian government, where she served in the infrastructure, development, transport, science and education portfolios.

Previously, her career had been in applied research with the Defence Science and Technology Organisation. Prior to that, she managed national infrastructure projects in Canberra. Trish is an experienced professional company director, having served on the boards of several large Australian companies. She is a Fellow of the College for Leadership and Management and fellow of the AICD.

Dr. Cathy Foley

Chief Scientist, CSIRO

Dr Cathy Foley, CSIRO Chief Scientist, has made distinguished contributions to the understanding of superconducting materials and to the development of devices using superconductors to detect magnetic fields and locate valuable deposits of minerals.
Dr Foley has made significant contributions to the scientific community as president of several scientific societies and as a member of committees such as PMSEIC giving advice to Government on scientific and technological matters. Cathy was awarded the `Woman of the Year’ by the NSW Government in 2013 and the International IEEE Award for Continuing and Significant Contributions to Applied Superconductivity 2014. In 2015 was awarded the Clunies Ross Medal of the Australian Academy of Technological Science and Engineering and in 2016 the Australian Institute of Physics Medal for Outstanding Service to Physics.
As a leader in CSIRO, Cathy is working to help existing Australia to transform to be globally competitive by engaging with Australian researchers and to build new companies and enterprises to assist with the translation of research for economic prosperity.

Speakers – Panel Discussions and Workshops


Ms. Anna-Maria Arabia

Chief Executive of the Australian Academy of Science

Prior to her appointment as Chief Executive of the Australian Academy of Science, Anna-Maria was Principal Adviser to the Hon Bill Shorten.

Anna-Maria brings with her experience as General Manager of Questacon – the National Science and Technology Centre; and CEO of Science & Technology Australia.

Anna-Maria has worked in senior policy roles in both social and economic portfolios. She has worked extensively with parliamentarians, the business and community sectors, and the media.

Anna-Maria was recently a Director of the Board of Spinal Cord Injuries Australia, an organisation committed to creating independence, dignity and unlimited opportunity for people living with spinal cord injury.

She is a passionate advocate for science, social justice and gender equity.

Anna-Maria obtained her Bachelor of Science (Hons) from the University of Melbourne and has undertaken medical research in the field of neuroscience both in Australia and abroad.

Ms. Anne Kealley

CEO at CAUDIT – the Council of Australasian University Directors of Information Technology

As Chief Executive Officer for the Council of Australasian University Directors of Information Technology (CAUDIT) (a NFP Member Association), Anne guides and facilitates initiatives which support CAUDIT’s 62 members as they lead the application of digital capabilities to transform education and research in higher education and research. Anne brings extensive experience in higher education, state government and secondary education to connecting, enabling and challenging CAUDIT’s members.

Personal interests include combining leadership and the application of new technologies with strategy to find new ways to achieve goals along with connecting people with common interests.

Amongst other activities, while at the Australian National University (ANU) Anne designed, brought together and led shared services for more than 1,500 academic and professional staff across the two science colleges. At the University of Western Australia (UWA) Anne facilitated UWA’s participation in the Western Australian Energy Research Alliance (WAERA) – an exciting research collaboration between UWA,Curtin University and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) with private enterprise in oil and gas engineering.

She is a graduate member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD), Vice-President (Membership) of the Coalition of Higher Education Information Technology Associations (CHEITA) and Co-Chair of the Australasian eResearch Organisations (AeRO).

Ms. Emily Hughes

Chief Engineer, Boeing Phantom Works International

Emily Hughes was appointed Chief Engineer with Boeing Phantom Works International in June 2018.

In this role, she is responsible for strategic leadership and ensuring technical excellence and regulatory compliance for all programs within the division. She also provides engineering and program leadership and advice, including the introduction of new technologies, best practices and the identification of appropriate performance metrics to the Phantom Works International team.

The Phantom Works mission is to engage customers to understand their needs, and the development of resulting prototypes of new products and systems.

Prior to this, Hughes was Senior Systems Engineer for Project Currawong (LAND 2072), which is delivering a networked Battlespace Communications System to the Australian Army and Royal Australian Air Force.

Before joining Boeing, Hughes spent over ten years in defence aerospace in the UK and Europe. She was Assistant Chief Engineer – Future Capability for BAE Systems, as well as holding key technical roles on fast jet aircraft, Tornado, Harrier and Hawk, the Nimrod MRA4 maritime patrol aircraft and a number of large unmanned air vehicles.

Hughes holds a degree in Aeronautical Systems from the University of Salford, United Kingdom. She is passionate about changing the stereotype for the next generation and supports a range of STEM initiatives. Her proudest moment was when her young daughter asked, “Mummy, can boys engineer too?”.

Ms. Belinda Watton

Chief Transformation Officer, Energy Queensland

Belinda is an experienced Director and Senior Executive with a track record of transforming cultures and delivering strong business performance in complex public, private and not for profit organisations. As the Chief Transformation Officer with Energy Queensland, she demonstrates experience in strategic visioning, planning and execution, building high performance teams, and leadership of business transformation, mergers and acquisitions.

Belinda holds directorships with Ergon Energy Retail, Energy Skills Queensland, the Electrical Safety Office and HELP Enterprises.

She has Bachelor of Commerce, Masters of Applied Law, qualifications in finance and is a graduate member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Ms. Julie Martin

General Manager (QLD, WA, NT, PNG) at EIC Activities

Julie Martin has over 20 years’ experience as an electrical engineer, having played a key role in a variety of large-scale infrastructure projects within Australia and internationally.  She is currently the General Manager (QLD, WA, NT, PNG) at EIC Activities, the CIMIC Group’s engineering and technical services business.  Prior to joining EIC, Julie held the position of Power Site Manager with CPB Contractors (formally Thiess) responsible for the delivery of QGC’s Surat North Project high voltage infrastructure.

In her role as HV Power Package Manager at Thiess, Julie was responsible for the delivery of the high voltage traction substations to support the supply of the new Moreton Bay Rail Link and was recognised with the Queensland NAWIC 2016 Award for Achievement in Construction (General Building).

Julie’s extensive experience also includes key design, project engineering, management and commissioning roles on rail projects in Australia and internationally.

In 2008 Julie won the Women in Community/Public Sector – Engineering category of the Smart Women – Smart State Awards for her work in the TrackStar Alliance program in South East Queensland.

Julie is the Chair of the Powerlink Board’s People, Culture and Remuneration Committee.

Ms. Katie Rowney

Senior Communications Officer, The University of Queensland

Katie Rowney is a senior communications officer at The University of Queensland, with a special focus on social media. Much of her job entails teaching academics with no social skills how to share their findings with the world. She co-authored the book Media Strategies, published by Allen & Unwin this year. Prior to joining UQ, she worked as a journalist, and in communications for Queensland’s emergency services, plotting new ways to evacuate towns with a single tweet. In 2015 she was invited by the White House to assist with a social media campaign for US President Barack Obama’s Queensland visit, and she takes every opportunity she can to brag about this.

Dr. Jyoti Sharma

Senior Scientist at Department of Science & Technology, India

Dr. Sharma has a professional career spanning more than 15 years of experience from handling technology lead interventions for rural population specially for Women and Weaker section to implementation of science and technology cooperation among different nations. Her profile and experience include the Conceptualization, Formulation and Implementation of Science Communication programs, Gender Initiatives for women scientists/technologists, quality assurance and quality control in vaccine manufacturing, drug regulation and implementation of Good Laboratory Practices (GLP) in contract research organizations and pharmaceuticals.

In her present job, she is responsible for establishment of bilateral cooperation with many countries as Senior Science administrator with Government of India. She is responsible for conceptualization, planning and coordination of the scientific schemes including their sensitization, inviting applications, analysing the technical & financial content of the proposals and final selection. She is involved in preparation of policy guidelines and formulation of new programs in science & technology and has taken many initiatives to sensitize Women Scientists. She is an active member of different committees and caucus working for gender parity at national and international level.

She had served in vaccine manufacturing company of Government of India and played significant role to make India polio free. She is a qualified vaccine analyst and part of National Good Laboratory Practices Compliance Monitoring Authority (NGCMA) for compliance of OECD principles in pre-clinical studies.

Dr. Sharma is a recipient of ‘M. J. Narasimhan Academic Award’ from Indian Phytopathological Society, ‘SERC fast track young scientist’s award’ from Government of India, ‘Imarti Devi Women Scientists Award’ and Indira Gandhi Life Time Achievement Award’ from Rajiv Gandhi International Science & Technology Association. She has presented papers under Young Scientist’s Award programs of esteemed science academies and published number of research papers on development of transgenics, drug regulations, ‘Women in STEMM’ and education policies. She is a regular speaker in different Conferences, Workshops and seminars on ‘Empowerment of Women Scientists and Technologists’.

Dr. Sharma holds a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry Hons. and a Ph.D. in Microbiology from Indian Agricultural Research Institute, India. Recently, she completed project entitled ‘Retention and barriers of women in STEMM: Policies and programs’ in Queensland University of Technology with common interest of Indian and Australian governments and continue working on education policies of both the countries.

Mrs. Leeanne Bond

BE(Chem) | MBA (UQ) | FAICD | NACD | FTSE HonFIEAUST | CPEng | EngExec NER | APEC Engineer | RPEQ

Leeanne Bond has 30 years corporate experience including over 14 years as a professional company director. As an executive, Leeanne helped establish WorleyParsons’ business in Queensland, NT and PNG.

Leeanne is currently the independent non-executive chair of ASX listed Synertec Corporation Limited (SOP) and a non-executive director of ASX listed Liquefied Natural Gas Limited (LNG), Snowy Hydro Limited, the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, The University of Queensland’s JKTech Pty Ltd and QADO Services Pty Ltd.

Leeanne has previously been a board member of public, private and government entities including Coffey International, Tarong Energy Corporation, Territory Generation, Seqwater, Australian Water Recycling Centre of Excellence, the Board of Professional Engineers of Queensland, the Queensland Building and Construction Commission and was chair of Brisbane Water.

Leeanne has a Bachelor of Chemical Engineering and an MBA from The University of Queensland and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. She is a Chartered Professional Engineer and an Honorary Fellow of Engineers Australia. Leeanne has recently been elected as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering.

Leeanne served as the first female President of Engineers Australia in Queensland in 2002 and is a past Deputy Chair of the Board of Professional Engineers. She was named Australian Professional Engineer of the Year in 2007 by Engineers Australia and recently served on the national board of Engineers Australia.

In addition to her board portfolio, Leeanne is also Executive for Diversity and Inclusion at Downer Mining Energy and Industrial, advising the CEO on improving gender diversity.

Dr. Megan Osmond

Research Scientist, CSIRO

Dr Megan Osmond has managed CSIRO’s participation in the pilot Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) programme since mid-2016. In this position, Megan is using her research science background to develop evidence-based strategies to advance the inclusion of diversity at CSIRO. Prior to this role, Megan worked in the CSIRO’s Nanosafety programme after joining as a post-doctoral research fellow in 2008, with a focus primarily on the biological safety of nanomaterials in consumer products, such as sunscreen and food. In addition to fundamental research, Megan’s work at the interface of science, regulation, and industry gave her insight into working effectively and harmoniously within diverse and multi-disciplinary teams, viewing product innovation through the lens of biological and environmental life-cycle safety and sustainability, barriers to technology transfer, and credibility in the public good sphere. Megan’s overall research aim was that the opportunities inherent in developing responsive and complex materials across a range of applications could be leveraged whilst maintaining a sensible eye on human and environmental health outcomes.

Mr. Peter Price

Executive, Energy Queensland

Peter Price was appointed to the Energy Queensland Executive in November 2016 and is responsible for leading the Group’s engineering and asset management strategies, which includes the safe and efficient management of the Group’s electricity distribution networks.

Prior to joining Energy Queensland, Peter was a member of Energex’s executive management team for ten years. His career with Energex included managing and leading capital planning and program delivery, asset management, procurement, regulatory issues and the growth of new commercial businesses.

Peter holds both a bachelor (honours) degree and a masters degree in engineering at the University of Queensland, and is a fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Peter is also Chair of Energy Skills Queensland and Deputy Chair of TAFE Queensland.

Professor Chennupati Jagadish

Head of Semiconductor Optoelectronics and Nanotechnology Group, Research School of Physics and Engineering, Australian National University

Professor Jagadish is a Distinguished Professor and Head of Semiconductor Optoelectronics and Nanotechnology Group in the Research School of Physics and Engineering, Australian National University.  He has served as Vice-President and Secretary Physical Sciences of the Australian Academy of Science during 2012-2016.  He is currently serving as President of IEEE Photonics Society and President of Australian Materials Research Society.  Prof. Jagadish is an Editor/Associate editor of 6 Journals (EIC-Progress in Quantum Electronics), 3 book series and serves on editorial boards of 19 other journals.  He has published more than 880 research papers (600 journal papers), holds 5 US patents, co-authored a book, co-edited 11 books and edited 12 conference proceedings and 15 special issues of Journals.

He won the 2000 IEEE Millennium Medal and received Distinguished Lecturer awards from IEEE NTC, IEEE LEOS and IEEE EDS. He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science, Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering, The World Academy of Sciences, US National Academy of Inventors, Indian National Science Academy, Indian Academy of Sciences, Andhra Pradesh Akademi of Science, IEEE, APS, MRS, OSA, AVS, ECS, SPIE, AAAS, FEMA, APAM, IoP (UK), IET (UK), IoN (UK) and the AIP. He received Peter Baume Award from the ANU in 2006, the Quantum Device Award from ISCS in 2010, IEEE Photonics Society Distinguished Service Award in 2010, IEEE Nanotechnology Council Distinguished Service Award in 2011 and Electronics and Photonics Division Award of the Electrochemical Society in 2012, 2013 Walter Boas Medal, 2015 IEEE Pioneer Award in Nanotechnology, 2015 IEEE Photonics Society Engineering Achievement Award, 2016 MRSI Silver Jubilee Anniversary Medal, 2016 Distinguished Fellow of Chinese Academy of Sciences, 2016 OSA Nick Holonyak Jr Award, 2017 Welker Award and 2017 IUMRS Somiya Award.  He has received Australia’s highest civilian honor, AC, Companion of the Order of Australia, as part of 2016 Australia day honors from the Governor General of Australia for his contributions to physics and engineering, in particular nanotechnology.

Ms. Kate Hamilton

Manager People Services and Analytics, Powerlink Queensland

Kate Hamilton is the Manager of People Services and Analytics for Queensland’s Energy Transmission Corporation. Her role includes the leadership of People Advisory, Strategic Sourcing and Recruitment and Insightful decision making through Analytics. Kate’s expertise has contributed to great people outcomes across science and research, financial services, HR & organisational psychology consulting and more recently in the energy sector. Kate is passionate about helping people connect their personal purpose to their working life, and making our time at work meaningful and enjoyable.

Dr. Sue Keay

Chief Operating Officer, Australian Centre for Robotic Vision

Dr. Sue Keay (pronounced “K”), Chief Operating Officer, Australian Centre for Robotic Vision
Recognised as one of RoboHub’s 2018 “Women in Robotics you need to know about”, as one of Queensland’s most influential people (Courier Mail’s Power 100) and as a Superstar of STEM (Science and Technology Australia), Sue combines science with business. She runs the world’s first robotic vision research centre and developed Australia’s first Robotics Roadmap highlighting how advances in robotics will impact on every sector of the Australian economy.