The National Police, Defence and Emergency Services Leadership Summit is a major annual event for women at all levels to connect, share ideas and build their leadership skills. Created by Australia’s leading authority on women’s leadership, Women & Leadership Australia, the Summit has been developed in consultation with a broad range of stakeholders across these sectors. 


Of attendees strongly agree
summit presenters are highly
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summit content is useful in their
everyday role​


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summit content was appropriate
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This significant annual event represents a key national platform for women in police, defence and emergency services organisations to enhance their leadership knowledge and capacity. 

The purpose of the Summit is to contribute to the development of resolute and effective women leaders through skills development, expert advice and strategic industry based networking. The 2019 Summit will provide a unique opportunity to learn from a wide variety of personnel from on the ground front-line managers to inspirational senior decision makers.


Wing Commander Cheryl Neal

​Deputy Director Military Recruiting (Attraction), RAAF

Fatima Abbas

Deputy Commissioner, NSW State Emergency Services

Commissioner Katarina Carroll

Commissioner, Queensland Fire and Emergency Services

Amna Karra-Hassan

Organisational Development Coordinator, Lebanese Muslim Association; Former Communications Officer, Australian Federal Police

Lauren Hepher

A/Paramedic Educator and Intensive Care Paramedic; Ambulance Tasmania; Mental Health Advocate

Senior Constable Sarah McGuinness

Sergeant, Security and Counter Terrorism Command, Queensland Police Service; 40 under 40 IACP Award Winner

Stephanie Rotarangi

Deputy Chief Officer, Country Fire Authority VIC; Highest ranked female officer in CFA history

Liz Ellis am

One of Australia’s highest profile elite athletes and most successful netballers ever; Broadcaster; Author



Director, Leadership and Advocacy,
Women & Leadership Australia 

With over twenty years of leadership development experience, Suzi brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her role as WLA’s Director of Leadership and Advocacy. Over an exceptional career, Suzi has built a reputation for designing and delivering quality professional development with a particular focus on transforming the performance of women leaders and their teams. As a development consultant, Suzi has worked across all levels of leadership and management in partnership with many of Australia's leading organisations.

Working alongside Australia’s highest achieving women, as well as personally guiding hundreds of individual female leaders to career success, has enabled Suzi to develop a deep understanding of, and appreciation for, the challenges women face in the workforce today. This extensive insight is critical in enabling Suzi to design and deliver highly impactful development programs with a focus on practical and achievable outcomes.

Passionate about nurturing talent in others, Suzi takes great pride in her work with WLA and is deeply committed to helping more women step up into leadership positions across all facets of the workforce and broader community. She is consistently acknowledged for her ability to connect with diverse audiences and create innovative learning environments focused on inclusivity and collaboration.

Suzi regularly speaks at local and international conferences about her lifelong passion for developing and empowering female leaders. Her academic studies and ongoing research help to inform a rigorous, evidence-based approach to her work.



During the Summit, participants will hear from a number of inspirational speakers about their leadership/career journeys and the key elements that have contributed to their success. Armed with this valuable insight, participants will identify their own unique gifts and talents and begin to create their personal brand and message.

Inspiration and Insight: My Leadership Journey​

Navigating Your Path​

Redefining Your Why

How full is your bucket? Mental health and resilience

Your personal brand is not only about who you are and what you want to be known for. It also relates to what you want to achieve and how you aim to achieve it. Create a pragmatic and purposeful plan for on-going professional and personal achievement. Establish a personal vision, prioritizing investment in professional development and identifying and achieving key career goals

Most of us live our lives by accident—we live as it happens. Fulfilment comes when we live our lives on purpose. Once you discover your WHY, you are better able to align your beliefs with every choice and action you take, in order to find greater fulfilment in all that you do. Find out how to make more intentional choices for your career and your life.

Personal and professional resilience is not only about strength through adversity but the ability to grow and adapt as a result of disruption. In this way we learn to move forward stronger than before. Participants are asked to consider resilience at both a personal and strategic level and through their leadership build resilience in their teams and manage challenging situations more effectively.


Venue: Federation Ballroom Hyatt Hotel, Canberra
Date: Friday 29th March 2019
Start/Finish: 09:00am - 05:00pm

Federation Ballroom Hyatt Hotel, Canberra
Friday 29th March 2019

Lieutenant Colonel Jasmin Diab

Base Commander, Campbell Barracks, Australian Army; Vice-President of Women in Nuclear Australia; Australian Representative on the Women in Nuclear Global Committee

Donna Adams

Deputy Secretary, Department of Police, Fire and Emergency Management; 2014 Tasmanian Telstra Business Women's Award Business Innovation Award Winner