Featured Speakers in 2020

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Addressing a wide range of topics including gender equality, leadership, career advancement and life fulfillment, the Symposiums offer an important opportunity for Australian women to stay abreast of current local and international trends. Designed to encourage interaction and collaboration, the events create a setting for women leaders at all levels to reflect on their experiences, envisage a future to which they are entitled and draw inspiration for the journey ahead. 

... And be inspired!

Showcasing the country’s most respected and celebrated female talent the Symposiums annually attract over one hundred inspirational guest speakers and presenters. Richly diverse in their achievements and fields of endeavour, Symposium speakers are universally recognised for their vision, resilience and capacity to influence change. By sharing their unique skills and knowledge, Symposium speakers encourage participants to unlock their innate strengths and talents and pursue their own unique vision of success.

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Drawing participants from every corner of the nation, the Symposiums offer an unrivaled opportunity for participants to extend their networks and develop lasting friendships and alliances. Through the sharing of personal experiences, participants unlock a spirit of camaraderie which typically extends far beyond the events themselves. Each year women from highly diverse backgrounds are drawn together through the Symposiums leading to powerful opportunities for collaboration on important national issues.

Planning for success through sharing success

An opportunity to step back, reflect and focus

Attended by a veritable who’s who of Australian organisations, the symposiums represent an accessible platform for businesses to remain connected to the gender equality debate and compare the latest thinking and strategy.

Showcasing celebrated and respected women from every field of endeavour, the events are synonymous with excellence and achievement across all facets of business and community leadership.

Michelle Dalzell

Michell Wool Pty Ltd

The inspiring speakers have ignited the urge to make changes in my work and personal life upon my return home.

Julie-Ann Gray

City of Albany

Today was very inspiring and motivating. I am currently undergoing the WLA Executive Ready Program, and this day has added value to the learning.

Lorna McCarthy

Victoria Police

I really enjoyed everything about this symposium. The keynote speakers were absolutely fantastic and relevant.

Vinu Thomas

Teachers Mutual Bank

Best two days of my life!

Very inspiring and thought provoking!

Bec Condon

Logan City Council

There have been so many ideas that I can take back to my management team to drive an improved and increased diversity awareness. Thank you, thank you, thank you!​

Pam Ronan

Catholic Education SA

It is so rare to be immersed in a professional program that encapsulates the value of women and how it really matters in the world.

The Australian Women's Leadership Symposiums are a national series of events focused on the experiences of women leaders in the contemporary workforce.

Held annually, in every state and territory, the Symposiums have been running for over ten years and have become the most highly attended women's leadership events in the country. 

Connecting, Empowering and Celebrating Women Leaders

The Australian Women’s Leadership Symposium

Both participants and speakers share their leadership journeys and experiences at the WLA symposiums.

WLA Symposiums – Participant Impressions

WLA symposium participants share their experiences and impressions of their time at the event.

Gold Sponsor

Platinum education Partner

 THE AUSTRALIAN WOMEN'S LEADERSHIP

sYMPOSIUM

2020 Tickets on sale Now

Justine
Saunders APM

Deputy Commissioner ABF Support, Australian Border Force

Dr Tammie
Matson

Zoologist, Author, Conservationist and Entrepreneur

Yumi
Stynes

Broadcaster, Writer, Author and Social Commentator

Brooke
Boney

Journalist; Radio Presenter; Entertainment Reporter, Nine’s Today Show

Amna Karra-Hassan

Organisational Development Coordinator, Lebanese Muslim Association; Board Member, Go Active Women

Kristal
Kinsela-Christie

Managing Director, Indigenous Professional Services; Non-Executive Director; Entrepreneur

Lara
Giddings

Former Premier of Tasmania; CEO, Australian Medical Association - Tasmania

Lisa
Sthalekar

Former Cricketer and Captain of Australia's International Women's Cricket Team

Ann
Sherry AO

Chairman, Carnival Australia; Chair, UNICEF Australia

Carly
Findlay

Writer and Appearance Activist

Dianne
McGrath

Astronaut Candidate, Mars One

Dr Larry
Marshall

CEO, CSIRO

Clover
Moore

Lord Mayor, City of Sydney

Fiona
O'Loughlin

Comedian, Author and Television Presenter

Louise
Taylor

Magistrate of the ACT Magistrates Court

Gill
Callister PSM

Professor (Practice) and Associate Dean, ANZSOG; Former Secretary, Victorian Department of Education and Training

Marina
Go

Chair, Suncorp Super Netball; Non-Executive Director

Daisy
Pearce

Commentator and AFLW Player

Professor Margaret Sheil AO

Vice-Chancellor, Queensland University of Technology

Tess
Walsh

Assistant Commissioner, Victoria Police

Rae
Johnston

Editor, Junkee; Host, That Start Up Show; Award-Winning STEM Journalist

Assistant Commissioner Charysse Pond APM

Assistant Commissioner, People Capability Command, Queensland Police Service

Lisa
Rodgers

Director-General, Department of Education WA

Narelle
Anderson

Founder and Director, Envirobank

Sallyanne Atkinson AO

Former Lord Mayor of Brisbane; Businesswoman

Florence Drummond

Founder, Indigenous Women in Mining Australia

Julie
McKay

Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, PwC Australia; Former Executive Director, Australian National Committee for UN Women

Cassie
Workman

Multi Award-Winning Transgender Comedian

Zali
Steggall OAM MP

Independent MP for Warringah; Former Olympian

Professor Caroline McMillen

Chief Scientist for South Australia

Pat
Turner AM

CEO, National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO)

Terri
Janke

Solicitor and Owner, Terri Janke and Company; 2011 NAIDOC Person of the Year

Virginia
Trioli

Journalist, Author, Radio and Television Presenter

Manal
al-Sharif

​Activist, Advocate and Scientist; Co-Founder, #Women2Drive movement

Libby
Trickett OAM

Olympic Gold Medallist Swimmer; QLD Mental Health
Ambassador

Ita
Buttrose AC, OBE

Media trailblazer, businesswoman, best-selling author, and former Australian of the Year

Catherine McGregor AM

Writer, Broadcaster, Cricket Commentator, Former Defence Force Officer

Gail
Kelly

Business Woman; Former CEO, Westpac; Author

Dr Terry Fitzsimmons

Managing Director, Australian Gender Equality Council

Liz
Cosson AM, CSC

Secretary, Department of Veterans’ Affairs; First Female Major General

Layne
Beachley AO

Eight Time World Champion Surfer & Champion Motivator

Meshel
Laurie

Comedian, Radio and Television Presenter

Renée
Leon PSM

Secretary, Services Australia

Nova
Peris OAM OLY

Olympic Gold Medallist and Former Federal Senator

Lee
Lin Chin

Former SBS Newsreader, Television & Radio Presenter, Journalist

Clare
Bowditch

Musician, Actor, Radio Presenter, Author and Business Entrepreneur

Catherine
Fox

Journalist, Author and Walkley Award Winner; Director of Diversity, WLA

Narelle
Underwood

Surveyor-General of NSW

Natalie
Brennan

General Manager, Muffin Break, Foodco Group Pty Ltd

Sarah
Renner

CEO, Hobart Airport

Catherine Marriott

Commissioner, Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research  

Emma
Bennison

CEO, Blind Citizens Australia

Belinda
Sharpe

First Female Referee, National Rugby League

Dr Misty
Jenkins

Laboratory Head, Walter and Eliza Hall

Select your city to book your tickets 

To discuss sponsorship opportunities please contact WLA’s Head of Events,

Sofia Monkiewicz via phone 03 9270 9095 or email smonkiewicz@wla.edu.au

Advocacy Partner

Leadership development grants for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women​.