Online Symposium 2022

Online Interactive Event

Friday 8th July 2022

All times listed are in Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST)

Panel Members

Professor Kate Warner AC

28th Governor of Tasmania

Aminata Conteh-Biger 

Founder & CEO, Aminata Maternal Foundation

Tammy Barlette

Retired Lieutenant Colonel and Fighter Pilot, U.S. Air Force; CEO, Athena's Voice

Dr Terrance Fitzsimmons

Managing Director, Australian Gender Equality Council; Director, AIBE Centre for Gender Equality in the Workplace

Jahna Cedar OAM

Executive Director, IPS Management Consultants

Cathy Ngo

Founder & Storyteller, Keynoteworthy

We all know that diverse and inclusive workplaces benefit individuals, organisations, teams and society and they have a significant impact on trust, commitment, performance, reputation, and financial performance. But what do inclusive workplaces and teams actually look and feel like? What are the practices of today's inclusive leaders? In this session, our expert panel will discuss the practices and principles that have supported their journeys as inclusive leaders and their stories will give you the knowledge and confidence in enacting these ideas to create a more inclusive workplace.

The Practices and Principles of Inclusive Leadership

Panel Discussion

10:50 - 12:20​

Teela Reid is Wiradjuri and Wailwan woman, lawyer and storyteller. She is the inaugural First Nations Lawyer in Residence at the University of Sydney Law School and is currently a Senior Solicitor at Chalk & Behrendt practicing in Aboriginal Land Rights and Native Title. Teela is also a co-founder of @blackfulla_bookclub on Instagram, a platform that celebrates First Nations Ancestors as the original storytellers. Teela was awarded the UNSW Young Alumni of the Year for her advocacy on the Uluru Statement from the Heart and contributions to the design of the NSW Walama Court Model. She was recognised at the 2021 Time Out leader in Civics, and the recipient of the Daisy Utemorrah Award for her manuscript: Our Matriarchs Matter. She has also written a number of essays published in the Griffith review, including 2020; the year of reckoning, not reconciliation, The Heart of Seeding First Nations Sovereignty and The Power of the First Nations Matriarchy; Warrior Women reckoning with the colony. 

Tammy Barlette is the founder of Athena’s Voice, a speaking collective featuring female pilots from around the United States. She herself is a fighter pilot who served in the Air Force for over 20 years, retiring in September of 2018 as a Lieutenant Colonel. She has flown multiple aircraft, including the T-37 Tweet, T-38 Talon, A-10 Warthog, MQ-1 Predator, and MQ-9 Reaper, accumulating more than 3000 total flying hours and over 1500 hours of combat support time assisting and protecting troops on the ground in both Iraq and Afghanistan. She is also a graduate of the prestigious US Air Force Weapons School and has a Master of Arts in Christian Ministry. Tammy is married to a Federal Agent and has three children.

Esther Simbi was both in South Sudan and spent years living in extreme hardship before coming to Australia in 2005 as a refugee and settling in Adelaide. She contracted polio as a child and lives with post-polio syndrome. Her strong beliefs in access to quality education and that disability is not inability empowered her to complete her master’s degree. Esther has worked with Families SA, Disability SA, and YWCA in many roles and is currently a Project Officer for JFA Purple Orange. She is also a published author, having written two books “Beyond Calamity” and “Blessed”. In 2014 Esther ran for parliament with Dignity Party SA in the state election, becoming the first African Refugee Women to run for parliament in Australia. Esther is a two-time community volunteer award winner for her extensive work with African Refugee Women and African Women with disabilities. She is a single mother to two beautiful daughters.

Growing up in Freetown in civil war-ravaged Sierra Leone, Aminata enjoyed a relatively charmed childhood until 1999 when a devastating consequence of the civil war changed things forever. Rebel forces from the Revolutionary United Front stormed Freetown and the Contehs’ home, kidnapping 18-year-old Aminata. Held captive for months, Aminata was finally freed as part of a negotiated prisoner exchange. However, not long after her release, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) recognised that one of Amanita’s captors posed a continued and serious threat to her safety. With the support of the UNHCR, Aminata became one of the very first Sierra Leonean refugee women to be settled in Australia. After the difficult birth of her daughter Sarafina, Aminata started the Aminata Maternal Foundation (AMF). Her goal is to increase the Australian public’s awareness of Sierra Leone, its challenges and its extraordinary beauty, and boost fundraising to expand a maternity hospital in Sierra Leone in 2021.

09:00 - 09:30

Welcome & Acknowledgment of Country

Program Director, Women & Leadership Australia

Dr Janet Smith

09:40 - 10:10

Keynote Address

Retired Lieutenant Colonel and Fighter Pilot, U.S. Air Force; CEO, Athena's Voice

Tammy Barlette

First Refugee of African descent to run for Parliament in the Upper House; Author; Social Worker; Disability Advocate

Esther Simbi

Teela Reid

Senior Solicitor, Sydney Law School Lawyer in Residence, advocate for the Uluru Statement, co-founder @blackfulla_bookclub

Program Director, Women & Leadership Australia

Dr Janet Smith

13:20 - 14:10

Development Session

12:20 - 12:50

Lunch

Suzi Finkelstein

16:10 - 16:20

Closing Comments

Chief Executive Officer, Women & Leadership Australia

15:30 - 16:10

Keynote Address

Founder & CEO, Aminata Maternal Foundation

Aminata Conteh-Biger

Program Director, Women & Leadership Australia

Dr Janet Smith

09:30 - 09:40

Welcome Address

Chief Executive Officer, Women & Leadership Australia

Suzi Finkelstein

Bree Gorman

Managing Director, Bree Gorman Consulting

Founder & Storyteller, Keynoteworthy

Cathy Ngo

Cathy Ngo (she/her/hers) is an entrepreneur, speaker and Inclusion Communications expert. She's also the founder of social enterprise. It’s mission is to solve the problems that event organisers have in finding and engaging speakers that reflect the diversity of gender, sexualities, abilities, ethnicity and ultimately, the perspectives that event-goers and sponsors are increasingly looking for. Cathy is well-known for pushing the boundaries and the agenda for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI). Her thought leadership is featured across media, including the Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, ABC, SBS, Women's Agenda, and radio. Cathy is degree-qualified in Business, majoring in Human Resource Management. She spent over a decade of her career in HR, Corporate Affairs and Communications roles for top listed companies before starting her own practice.

What is Inclusive Leadership and Why does it Matter?

Inclusive Leadership involves embracing and practicing both Diversity and Inclusion. This Development Session will build on the Panel Session by further exploring the signature traits of Inclusive Leaders and highlighting strategies and practical actions needed to create psychological safety and reduce unconscious bias in the workplace.

Bree Gorman is a Diversity and Inclusion consultant working with organisations to create sustainable and meaningful change. Prior to launching Bree Gorman consulting, they worked as a Diversity and Inclusion manager at Deakin University. Bree’s expertise is in using data to design and inform Diversity and Inclusion strategies. They have lived experience as a minority gender in the sciences and as a genderqueer bisexual.

Managing Director, Bree Gorman Consulting

Bree Gorman

Teela Reid

Senior Solicitor, Sydney Law School Lawyer in Residence, advocate for the Uluru Statement, co-founder @blackfulla_bookclub

Dr Terry Fitzsimmons is a Senior Lecturer in leadership, human resource management and change management teaching into the MBA Program at the University of Queensland Business School. He is the Director of the AIBE Centre for Gender Equality in the Workplace. Dr Fitzsimmons has led on several major reports into gender inequality in Australia including ‘Filling the Pool’, a major report into gender inequality in Western Australia with The Committee for Perth; ‘Hands Up for Gender Equality’ an examination of the origins of gender segregation in Australia’s Workforce with the Alliance of Girls Schools Australasia; and ‘Employer of Choice for Gender Equality: Leading Practices in Strategy, Policy and Implementation’, detailing leading change practices towards workplace gender equality with the Workplace Gender Equality Agency. 

10:40 - 10:50     Break

12:50 - 13:20

Keynote Address

Managing Director, Australian Gender Equality Council; Director, AIBE Centre for Gender Equality in the Workplace

Dr Terrance Fitzsimmons

14:10 - 14:20     Break

15:20 - 15:30     Break

10:10 - 10:40

Northern Territory Award for Excellence in Women's Leadership

Dr Anne Walters

Chief Plant Health Officer, Department of Industry, Tourism and Trade

Executive Director, IPS Management Consultants

Jahna Cedar OAM

Western Australia Award for Excellence in Women's Leadership

14:20 - 14:50

Tasmania Award for Excellence in Women's Leadership

28th Governor of Tasmania

Professor Kate Warner AC

14:50 - 15:20

Esther Simbi

First Refugee of African descent to run for Parliament in the Upper House; Author; Social Worker; Disability Advocate

Dr Anne Walters

Chief Plant Health Officer, Department of Industry, Tourism and Trade

Dr Walters is the Chief Plant Health Officer for the Northern Territory. She is also the Deputy Chair of the National Plant Health Committee and will commence her tenure as Chair in December 2022. Dr Walters has a passion for empowering others, and for the past four years, has led a Northern Territory Government Women’s Leadership Network to help other women. The intent of the Network is to bring women together to inspire and be inspired, to encourage cultural change through positive leadership, to promote female role models, and to provide women with opportunities to develop, network and share. Dr Walters has an undergraduate degree in Aquaculture, a first-class honours degree and a PhD in Ecology, and a Master’s in Business Administration. In 2020, Dr Walters was awarded the 2020 Telstra Business Women’s Award for Public Sector and Academia in the Northern Territory. 

Jahna Cedar OAM is a Nyiyaparli woman from the Pilbara region of Western Australia and is recognised as a strong Indigenous community leader. She has worked for over 20 years advocating for equal rights and reconciliation of Indigenous people and has represented Indigenous Australia at the United Nations in New York, on three occasions. In 2012, Jahna was the youngest person to be elected into the West Australian International Women’s Day Hall of Fame and in 2017 proudly won Business news 40 under 40, First amongst equals. Jahna was also awarded Telstra Businesswoman Awards WA – For Purpose and Social Enterprise Winner in 2017. Jahna is the Executive Director Indigenous Advisory, policy, research and evaluation with IPS Management Consultants and sits on numerous boards, as a way of giving back to community.

Kate Warner was Tasmania’s 28th Governor from 2014 to 2021. Before her term as Governor, Kate Warner was a Professor, Faculty of Law, at the University of Tasmania and Director of the Tasmania Law Reform Institute.  Following her appointment as Governor, she was made a professor emeritus. In her speeches as Governor, she spoke frequently of the need to promote gender equality and tackle the problem of gender violence.  Engagement with the Aboriginal people of Tasmania and their organisations was also a focus of her term as Governor and led to her appointment to the Pathway to Truth-Telling and Treaty project in 2021.  In 2017 she was appointed a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC) for her eminent service to the people of Tasmania. She has held many other roles including Commissioner for the Tasmania Gaming Commission, President of the Alcoso Foundation, and Member of the Board of Legal Education. 

Journalist & Presenter, ABC

Kristy O’Brien has worked as a Bi-media Journalist, Producer and Presenter for various television and radio programs across Australia.  She is currently one of the hosts and researchers for the ABC TV Series ‘Movin to the Country’. She balances this role with her regular duties as the Northern Territory Correspondent for flagship ABC program Landline. In 2018 and 2020, she was named SA/NT Rural Journalist of the Year as well as the Best Overall Television Journalist. She has worked for specialist Current Affairs programming ‘Australian Story’ and ‘Backroads’ and in the Northern Territory newsroom covering major news events for nearly a decade. Kristy is also an accomplished documentary producer and was named Screen Producers Australia’s ‘One to Watch’ for her documentary ‘Tough Ride’ about the issue of brain injury among young people in regional Australia. 

Kristy O’Brien

KRISTY O’BRIEN

Journalist & Presenter, ABC

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