Speakers 2013

2013 Forum Speakers

Paul Barratt AO B.A., B.Sc. (Hons), FAICD, FCDA

BarrattPaul Barratt has an Honours Degree in Physics from the University of New England, an Arts Degree (Asian Civilisation and Economics) from the Australian National University, and successfully completed a 16-week intensive course for graduates in science and engineering at the Australian Institute of Nuclear Science and Engineering at Lucas Heights NSW. After a 25 year career in the Commonwealth Public Service, mainly in areas relating to resources, energy and international trade, in 1992 he became Executive Director of the Business Council of Australia, a body consisting of the Chief Executive Officers of about 90 of the 100 largest companies in Australia.

In 1996 he returned to the Public Service, becoming Secretary to the Departments of Primary Industries and Energy (1996-98) and Defence (1998-9).

He now runs his own consulting business, with interests in defence, natural resource management and public policy, and is a Principal of AADI Defence Pty Ltd (www.aadidefence.com), a defence technology and advisory company he and three colleagues founded in 2010.

He is Deputy Chairman of the Cooperative Research Centre for Advanced Composite Structures (www.crc-acs.com.au), Chairman of Australia 21 (www.australia21.org.au), a non-profit company dedicated to stimulating research and development on issues of strategic importance to Australia in the 21st century, and has just completed his maximum two terms as a director of UNE Foundation Ltd, a company established to raise and invest funds for the support of scholarships, research and teaching at the University of New England.

In 1997 he received a Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of New England.  In 1999 he was made an Officer in the General Division of the Order of Australia in 1999, for service to public administration, public policy development, business and international trade.

James Batley

jamesbatleyJames Batley joined AusAID as Deputy Director General of the Asia, Pacific and Program Enabling Group and the agency’s Executive Committee in February 2011. Before joining AusAID, James headed the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (external website)’s Consular, Public Diplomacy and Parliamentary Affairs Division.

James joined the Department of Foreign Affairs in 1984 and early in his career served in Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, and Indonesia. From 1997 to 1999 he was Australian High Commissioner to Solomon Islands, concurrently serving terms in 1997 as Deputy Leader of the regional Truce Monitoring Group in Bougainville and in 1998 as Chief Negotiator of the Group’s successor, the Peace Monitoring Group.

From 1999 to 2002 James served as Australia’s senior diplomatic representative in Dili, East Timor, and was appointed Australia’s first Ambassador to East Timor at independence in May 2002. In 2004 James was appointed Special Coordinator of the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands, a position he held until 2006. From early 2007 to late 2009 he served as Australia’s High Commissioner to Fiji, with concurrent accreditation to Tuvalu and Nauru, and as Permanent Representative to the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat.

James also held a range of senior positions with the department in Canberra. He was awarded the Public Service Medal in 2002.

Roger Beale AO
Commissioner, Climate Commission

RogerBealeRoger Beale AO is an economist and public policy expert, and currently Principal at Pricewaterhouse Coopers. He is a former Secretary of the Department of Environment and Heritage and was a lead author for the UN’s Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report.

Mr Beale was made a Member of the Order of Australia in 1995 in recognition of his contribution to economic reform and was awarded the Centenary Medal for leadership of the environment portfolio in 2001. In 2006 he was promoted to Officer of the Order of Australia in recognition of his contribution to the development of national environment policy.

Pablo Berrutti
Head of Responsible Investment Asia Pacific, Colonial First State Global Asset Management (‘CFSGAM’)

PBerruttiIn his role, Pablo is responsible for supporting our investment teams and working across asset classes in the Asia Pacific region. Prior to joining CFSGAM in July 2012,  Pablo was the Head of Responsible Investment for Perpetual, Sydney. In this role Pablo was responsible for the design, implementation and maintenance of Perpetual’s responsible investment framework.

Pablo brings 10 years financial services experience, including 5 years in risk management roles with the Commonwealth Bank Group and Perpetual. Pablo is the current Chair of the Investor Group on Climate Change Research Working Group, and Chair of the Responsible Investment Association of Australasia. He has a diploma  of superannuation and a Certificate 4 in financial planning.  He is currently studying a graduate certificate in sustainability at the Harvard Extension School.

Dennis C. Blair
Former United States Director of National Intelligence retired United States Navy Admiral

dennisblairDennis Blair serves as a member of the Energy Security Leadership Council of Securing America's Future Energy and a member of the Aspen Homeland Security Council.   He is on the boards of  Freedom House, the National Bureau of Asian Research and the National Committee on US-China Relations.  Blair is an advisor to Lockheed Martin Space Systems, and the European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company, North America.

From January 2009 to May 2010, as Director of National Intelligence, Blair led sixteen national intelligence agencies, administering a budget of  $50 billion and providing integrated intelligence support to the President, Congress and operations in the field. 

From 2003 to 2006, Dennis Blair was president and chief executive officer of the Institute for Defense Analyses (IDA), a federally funded research and development center based in Alexandria, Virginia that supports the Department of Defense, the Department of Homeland Security and the Intelligence Community.

Prior to retiring from the Navy in 2002, Admiral Blair served as Commander in Chief, US Pacific Command, the largest of the combatant commands. During his 34-year Navy career, Admiral Blair served on guided missile destroyers in both the Atlantic and Pacific fleets and commanded the Kitty Hawk Battle Group.  Ashore, he served as Director of the Joint Staff and held budget and policy positions on the National Security Council and several major Navy staffs.

A graduate of the US Naval Academy, Admiral Blair earned a master’s degree in history and languages from Oxford University as a Rhodes scholar, and was a White House fellow at the Department of Housing and Urban Development.  He has been awarded four Defense Distinguished Service medals, three National Intelligence Distinguished Service medals, and has received decorations from the governments of Japan, Thailand, Korea, Australia, the Philippines and Taiwan.

Jeffrey Bleich
USA Ambassador

Jeffrey BleichJeffrey Bleich was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on 20 November 2009, to be the U.S. Ambassador to Australia and presented his credentials in Canberra on 26 November 2009. Mr Bleich previously served as Special Counsel to the President at the White House. From 1995 to 2009, he was a litigation partner in the San Francisco office of Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP, where he was recognized as one of the nation's top lawyers. Outside of his legal practice, Mr Bleich has had a long-standing commitment to international law. After clerking for Judge Howard Holtzmann at the Iran-U.S. Claims Tribunal and acting as Special Rapporteur to the International Court of Arbitration, he assisted the Special Prosecutor for the International Tribunal for the Former-Yugoslavia. He has taught international human rights at UC Berkeley's School of Law, and written and lectured extensively on the international criminal court.

In 2008, he served simultaneously as the Chair of the California State University Board of Trustees and as the President of the State Bar of California. Mr Bleich also represented the ABA before the United States Supreme Court in several matters including the Medellin case concerning the Vienna Convention on Consular Rights. He recently chaired both the ABA's Amicus Curiae Committee and the subcommittee on Corporate Social Responsibility. Mr Bleich served as an officer or member in numerous foreign policy organizations including the Council on Foreign Relations, the ABA Section on International Law, the Pacific Council on International Policy, the International Law Association, the American Society of International Law, and Human Rights Watch.
Mr Bleich received his B.A. from Amherst College, his Masters in Public Policy from Harvard University, and his law degree from the University of California at Berkeley School of Law. He received his certificate in Public International Law from the Hague Academy in 1993. Following graduation from law school, he clerked for Chief Justice Rehnquist on the United States Supreme Court as well as Judge Abner J. Mikva of the D.C. Circuit.

Mara Bun

marabunMara Bun began her colorful career as a Financial Analyst with the international investment bank Morgan Stanley, spending five years in their New York and San Francisco practices where she specialized in high technology corporate finance. In 1989 she joined a World Bank Nepali earthquake reconstruction project in Kathmandu, then moved to Australia embracing leadership roles with Greenpeace Australia and CHOICE in the 1990s.

Mara returned to investment banking as Senior Internet Equities Analyst at Macquarie Bank in 1999, covering Internet equities during the dotcom boom and its demise. She was a Director in the Allen Consulting Group’s Sydney public policy economic consulting practice, and later joined CSIRO as Director of Business Development and member of CSIRO’s Executive Management Council.

Mara is founding CEO of Green Cross Australia (www.greencrossaustralia.org). Green Cross Australia helps people adapt to our changing climate, catalysing business, research and community partnerships that empower the community to take practical actions that advance sustainability and community resilience. Green Cross excels in digital communications through six interactive platforms that reach 300,000 Australians. Its primary school environmental education program ‘Green Lane Diary’ has inspired 78,000 students around Australia since 2010.

Green Cross Australia’s new social venture www.everyrooftop.org.au offers households and businesses a way to go solar with no money upfront, while reducing electricity bills. The program promotes solar leasing through a peer-to-peer network, building on a successful US model plus an Aussie twist.

The Hon Greg Combet AM MP
Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency. Minister for Industry and Innovation

GCombetGreg Combet comes from a wine making family, growing up at Penfold's Minchinbury cellars in the western suburbs of Sydney. He studied mining engineering at the University of New South Wales, working in the coal industry and later in community organisations. After working in the field of occupational health and safety, he went on to become a union official, at the same time graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Sydney. He also has a Graduate Diploma in Labour Relations and the Law.

After working for the Waterside Workers Federation for some years, Greg joined the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) in 1993 and was leader of the ACTU from 1999 to 2007. During his time at the ACTU, Greg oversaw numerous national wage cases to secure pay rises for low-paid Australian workers.

Greg also led the union movement in the high profile 1998 waterfront dispute, the union campaign that secured employee entitlements for 16,000 workers after the collapse of Ansett, and the campaign that secured a multi-billion dollar settlement for Australian asbestos victims from James Hardie. As ACTU leader he conducted the successful “Rights at Work” campaign against the Howard Government's workplace relations laws.

Greg is a former director of Members Equity Bank and the $30 billion superannuation fund, Australian Super. He was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia in 2006. Following the Labor Party’s Federal Election win in November 2007, Greg was appointed Parliamentary Secretary for Defence Procurement in the Rudd Labor Government.

In February 2009 he was appointed the Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Change and in June 2009 was appointed Minister for Defence Personnel, Materiel and Science and the Minister Assisting the Minister for Climate Change. On 26th February 2010 he was awarded additional responsibility within the Climate Change and Energy Efficiency portfolio, giving him the direct responsibility for winding up the insulation program.

After the 2010 Federal Election, the Gillard Labor Government was formed on 7th September. Greg was promoted to Cabinet in the role of Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency. In December 2011, Greg took on the additional responsibility as the Minister for Industry and Innovation.The Prime Minster made changes to the Ministry on 25th March 2013 announcing that Greg was the Minister for Climate Change, Industry and Innovation.

Greg is a keen student of Australian labour history, a long time fancier of Gouldian finches and has a natural interest in the méthode Champenoise as it is applied to the production of sparkling Shiraz.

Reverend Tim Costello AO
Chief Executive Officer, World Vision Australia

Tim CostelloAs CEO of World Vision Australia, Tim leads an organisation of about 560 staff, with an annual income of about $350 million, and 400,000 children overseas sponsored by Australians. Tim has long been the voice of social conscience for many Australians, having led debates on issues such as gambling, urban poverty, homelessness, reconciliation and substance abuse.

Tim studied law and education at Monash University, followed by theology at the International Baptist Seminary Rueschlikon in Switzerland, and a Master’s in Theology at the Melbourne College of Divinity. He has been a Baptist Minister in St Kilda, and in the city at Collins St Baptist Church. Tim continued to serving the local community by successfully running for Mayor of St Kilda in 1993, ending with the State Government's disbanding of councils shortly afterwards. He founded Urban Seed, a not-for-profit Christian outreach service for the urban poor.

In July 2004, Tim was named Victorian of the Year 2004. In June 2005, he was made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO). Tim is currently Chairman of the National Australia Bank's community advisory council, a member of the Alcohol Education and Rehabilitation Foundation, and Chairman of the Community Council for Australia, a peak body for the Not For Profit sector.

Dr Steve Dovers
Director, Fenner School of Environment and Society, The Australian National University

stevedoversSteve is associated with the national adaptation research networks in settlements and infrastructure, disasters, and social science. He is Associate Editor of Environmental Science and Policy and the Australasian Journal of Environmental Management, and a member of the editorial board of Global Environmental Change.

Steve Dovers was originally trained as an ecologist and natural resource manager, and worked in local government and heritage management. Over time, he studied geography, environmental law and environmental history, and gained a PhD in environmental policy in 1996. He became and academic member of staff at the then Centre for Resource and Environmental Studies at the ANU in 1997. Since 2009, he has been Director of the Fenner School of Environment and Society at the ANU.

Stephen Dunne BBus, MBA, CFA, F Fin
Managing Director, AMP Capital Investors

StephenDunneStephen Dunne joined AMP Capital Investors in 1994 and was appointed Managing Director in 2004.  He has over 25 years experience in investment management, both in Australia and in the United Kingdom.  AMP Capital Investors is a specialist investment manager which manages funds across a range of asset classes including equities, fixed interest, property and infrastructure.  AMP Capital Investors has offices in Australia, Bahrain, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, the UK and the USA, with a strong focus on Asia Pacific.

Prior to being appointed Managing Director, Stephen held a number of roles within AMP Capital Investors, including Director of Client and Marketing for Asia Pacific and Director of AMP Asset Management for Australia and New Zealand.  Before he joined AMP Capital Investors, Stephen held a number of managerial roles at National Mutual Funds Management.  Stephen is a Chartered Financial Analyst, holds a Master of Business Administration from Monash University and is a Fellow of the Financial Services Institute of Australasia (Finsia). 

Other Directorships/Appointments

  • Member of CFA Strategic Advisory Board
  • Member of St James Ethics Centre Advisory Council
  • Chairman of the Banking & Finance Oath Limited
  • Woolworths Corporate Responsibility Panel

Michelle Edge
Chief Executive Officer, Australian Meat Processor Corporation

MichelleEdgePrior to becoming CEO Michelle worked at the Department of Primary Industries Victoria designing the National R,D&E Strategy. Other roles included working for the State Government; developing the Victorian Livestock Management Act; working as a research scientist in animal welfare; animal production science and ethology; industry extension, education and training; livestock management policy and regulation. Michelle also has considerable experience in various R&D capacities including Executive Officer, research officer and other industry technical roles.

Nathan Fabian
Chief Executive Officer, Investor Group on Climate Change Australia/New Zealand

Nathan FabianMr Nathan Fabian is the Chief Executive Officer of the Investor Group on Climate Change Australia/New Zealand. He previously headed Environmental Social and Governance Research in an investment research and corporate engagement company. In other former roles, he was founding partner of a financial services and IT start-up company advisory firm, a corporate governance policy adviser, an organisational change consultant and a market analyst in the IT sector.

Mr Fabian is also a director of the Thermometer Foundation for Social Research on Climate Change, a founding member of the International Young Professionals Foundation, a Vincent Fairfax Fellow, a member of Finsia's Sustainability Advisory Council and a member of the Government's Business Roundtable on Climate Change.

Paul Freeman
General Manager, Liveable City Solutions, Sydney Water

Paul was appointed as General Manager, Liveable City Solutions in July 2012. Prior to this, Paul was General Manager, Asset Management from July 2000, with stewardship for the management and planning of Sydney Water's assets.

Paul joined Sydney Water in 1978 as a trainee mechanical engineer. He completed a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the then NSW Institute of Technology (now University of Technology Sydney) in 1983, with first class honours and the Institute medal.

Paul is a Graduate Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, a Board Member of the Australian Water Association and Deputy Chair of the Industry Advisory Network for the Faculty of Engineering and IT at UTS.

Dr Paul Hardisty
Director of the Climate Adaptation National Research Flagship, CSIRO

phardistyDr Paul Hardisty is the Director of the CSIRO National Climate Adaptation Research Flagship which aims to equip Australia with practical and effective adaptation options to climate change and variability. 

Previously, Paul was Global Director of EcoNomicsTM and Sustainability at the international engineering services company WorleyParsons. He has more than 20 years experience in the environmental and sustainability fields, with recognised global expertise in the resources and industrial sectors and advising corporations and governments.

Paul holds a PhD in Environmental Engineering from Imperial College, University of London, and has been a visiting Professor in Environmental Engineering at the College since 1999. He is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Western Australia School of Business, where he teaches sustainability and climate change to MBA students, and is a Director of Green Cross Australia, an NGO dedicated to helping empower resilient communities.

Paul has a strong scientific publication record and has published two books, most recently, Environmental and Economic Sustainability. He lives in Perth with his wife and two sons, and for fun competes in Ironman triathlons.

Dr Brian Keating
Director, CSIRO Sustainable Agriculture Flagship

bkeatingBrian Keating is Director of the CSIRO Sustainable Agriculture Flagship. This National Research Flagship draws on the skills of over 300 research scientists across the breadth of CSIRO and together with partners in industry, government and academia, focuses on productivity, greenhouse gas abatement and sustainability challenges in Australian agriculture, forestry and land-use systems. The Flagship also is a focal point for CSIRO’s engagement internationally via research partnerships that supports rural development, greenhouse gas abatement and food security.

Brian Keating has 35 years experience in agricultural and natural resource management R&D. Research activities and leadership roles over this period, including Deputy Chief and then Chief of the Division of Sustainable Ecosystems (2004-2008) and Board member of Sugar, Rainforest Ecology and Management and Tropical Savannas CRCs.  A graduate of the University of Queensland (B Agr Sc 1st Class Hons., 1976 and PhD 1981), his personal research career has focused on sustainable management of farming systems, with deep experience in Australia’s grain and sugar industries and smallholder mixed farming systems in Africa.

Brian has authored over 200 scientific papers covering diverse topics including soil and water management, plant nutrition, soil carbon and nitrogen cycling, crop physiology, farming systems analysis and design, bioenergy, simulation modelling, climatic risk management and food security.  He is a member of the Editorial Board of the international journal, Agricultural Systems and a member of the Australian Government’s Domestic Offsets Integrity Committee for the Carbon Farming Initiative.

Molly Harriss Olson
Director of EcoFutures Pty Ltd

MollyMs Olson is a Director of EcoFutures Pty Ltd, an Australian-based international policy firm working on building sustainable strategies with business, government and civic leaders. Ms Olson is co founder of Earthmark and an internationally recognised leader on sustainability.

Ms Olson was the Executive Director of the President Clinton's Council on Sustainable Development. She was founding President and CEO of The Natural Step, a U.S. a non-profit environmental education organization working with business leaders. Ms Olson has worked extensively in Australia, including as a consultant to the Environment Minister of Australia when she conducted a major review of the Government's funding for the environment.

Ms Olson was the sustainability expert for the Opening Plenary of the World Economic Forum's 2000 meeting in Davos, and has a significant speaking role on a variety of international speaking platforms. She was the Chair of King Carl Gustaf's Business Leadership and the Environmental Symposium, Stockholm, Sweden 1996, and the Myerhoff Visiting Scholar for Global Civic Responsibility, Goucher College, Baltimore, MD. "Business Class" Magazine identified Ms Olson as a "Woman to Watch into 2000". She serves on the Boards of the Green Building Council of Australia, Fairtrade Labelling Organisation International (FLO), and was founding Chair of the Editorial Advisory Board of "Ecos" Magazine (CSIRO Publishers).

Dr John Hewson AM

JohnhewsonDr Hewson has had virtually four careers as an academic and economist , businessman , political advisor and politician and in the media as a columnist and commentator. In economics he has worked for the Treasury, the RBA ,the IMF and as a Professor and Dean/Head of School.

In business he is best known as a Founder of Macquarie Bank, Chairman ABN AMRO Australia and as Chairman/Director of a host of public/private companies and charities. In politics, he worked as an advisor in the Fraser Government and was Leader of the Federal Opposition. In the media, he has written regularly for the BRW, the AFR and comments regularly on radio and television.

Professor Robert Hill AC
United States Study Centre, University of Sydney

roberthillDefence Minister of Australia (2001-2006), Leader of the Government in the Senate (1996-2006); Minister for the Environment and Heritage (1996-2001). After leaving Parliament, Permanent Representative to the United Nations (2006-2009); Adjunct Professor of Sustainability at the US Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, and head of the Carbon Trust. Chancellor of the University of South Australia from 2010.

The Hon Greg Hunt MP
Shadow Minister for Climate Action, Environment and Heritage

Greg HuntThe Hon Greg Hunt MP has represented the Federal Electorate of Flinders since 2001. In December 2007 he was appointed Shadow Minister for Climate Change, Environment and Urban Water, a role which was expanded to include all water responsibilities in September 2008. His role expanded further in December 2009 when he became the Shadow Minister for Climate Action, Environment and Heritage. A Fulbright Scholar, Greg has an LLB with First Class Honours from the University of Melbourne and a Master of International Relations from Yale University. His Honours thesis was about using market forces to reduce pollution. Greg was Senior Adviser to former Foreign Minister Alexander Downer and has also worked at the United Nations Centre for Human Rights and as Associate to the Chief Justice of the Federal Court. He was Australia's Chief Electoral Observer in Cambodia in 1998.

Hugh Jackman

hughjackmanBorn in Sydney of English parentage, and the youngest of five children, Jackman has a communications degree with a journalism major from the University of Technology Sydney. After graduating, he pursued drama at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, immediately after which he was offered a starring role in the ABC-TV prison drama "Correlli" (1995), opposite his future wife Deborra-Lee Furness. Several TV guest roles followed, as an actor and variety compere. An accomplished singer, Jackman has starred as Gaston in the Australian production of "Beauty and the Beast." He appeared as Joe Gillis in the Australian production of "Sunset Boulevard." In 1998, he was cast as Curly in the Royal National Theatre's production of Trevor Nunn's Oklahoma. Jackman has made two feature films, the second of which, Erskineville Kings (1999), garnered him an Australian Film Institute nomination for Best Actor in 1999. Recently, he won the part of Logan/Wolverine in the Bryan Singer- directed comic-book movie X-Men (2000). In his spare time, Jackman plays piano, golf, and guitar, and likes to windsurf.

Peter Jennings PSM
Chief Executive Officer, Australian Strategic Policy Institute and formerly Deputy Secretary of Strategy for the Australian Defence Department

peterjenningsPeter Jennings commenced as ASPI Executive Director on 30 April 2012. Prior to that he was the Deputy Secretary for Strategy in the Australian Department of Defence.

His career has included extensive experience advising Government at senior levels; developing major strategic policy documents; conducting crisis management, and researching, writing and teaching international security.

Peter has previously held a number First Assistant Secretary positions in Defence including First Assistant Secretary International Policy Division, First Assistant Secretary Coordination and Public Affairs and Secretary of the Defence Audit and Risk Committee.

Peter was for a number of years the Director of Programs at ASPI. He wrote and commentated widely on defence policy and international security, and taught postgraduate studies on terrorism at the Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA).

Peter was awarded the Public Service Medal in the Australia Day 2013 Honours List for outstanding public service through the development of Australia's strategic and defence policy, particularly in the areas of Australian Defence Force operations in East Timor, Iraq and Afghanistan.

Dr Andrew Johnson
Group Executive Environment, CSIRO

AndrewJohnsonDr Andrew Johnson is a member of the CSIRO Executive Team and CSIRO’s Group Executive – Environment, with responsibilities for leading the organisation’s water, land, climate, marine, biodiversity, urban sustainability, regional development and natural resource management research. His professional interests are in natural resource planning and policy, public participation in private and public sector decision-making and novel approaches to support rural and regional development.

A Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, Andrew is also a Non Executive Director of Planet Ark Environmental Foundation and Reef & Rainforest Research Centre Ltd.

He is a member of the Prime Ministers Northern Australia Land and Water Taskforce, Chair of the Northern Australia Ministerial Forum Expert Advisory Council, a Member of the Australian Government’s High Level Coordinating Group on Climate Change Science and the Australian Government’s Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development.

Andrew is also Australia’s representative on the Belmont Forum of Global Environmental Change Funders and the Governing Council of the International Institute of Applied Systems Analysis in Vienna.

Andrew was awarded a PhD from the University of Queensland and a Masters Degree from the John F Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University where he was a Rotary Foundation Scholar. His professional interests are in natural resource planning and policy, public participation in private and public sector decision-making and novel approaches to support rural and regional development.

Fran Kelly

Fran KellyRespected radio presenter, current affairs journalist and political correspondent, Fran Kelly hosts ABC Radio National's agenda-setting Breakfast program. Though Fran has become a feature of the ABC's coverage of local and world affairs on both radio and television, her career may well have taken a very different direction; after studying arts at Adelaide University, majoring in literature and classics, Fran became part of the Adelaide and Melbourne music scenes at the end of the 1970s. She was the singer for several bands, most notably an all-girl new wave band, Toxic Shoc, and worked as the Activities Director for Adelaide's Flinders University.

Her change of tack into current affairs journalism had its seeds in her first foray into radio: also in 1984 Fran worked on Melbourne RRR's Backchat program, which featured women's current affairs, issues and talkback. The experience sparked a desire to embark on a new career.

An unlikely application for a senior current affairs position with the ABC turned out to be her lucky break; though she didn't get the job, Fran was eventually called back to fill in for a few weeks. Then in 1988, she was invited to take up a three month position in Sydney with The Drum, the current affairs program of the ABC's youth radio station, triple j.

Her talent for current affairs was soon spotted by other departments at the ABC and after 18 months, Fran moved to work on ABC Radio's flagship current affairs programs AM and PM, heard then, as now, across Australia via ABC Local Radio and ABC Radio National.

In 1993 she moved to the heart of Australian politics, working for ten years in various roles within the Canberra press gallery. Initially Fran remained with AM and PM and within a year was their Chief Political Correspondent and Bureau Chief. In 1997 she swapped studios, joining ABC Radio National's Breakfast program as the political correspondent.

Another big twist in Fran's career came in 2001 when she took on her first job on Australian TV. In 2001 she became political editor for ABC TV's 7.30 Report. After two years she took up an overseas posting as the ABC's Europe correspondent based in London.

In March 2005, Fran called time on London, returning home to Australia to take up her current position. She revels in Breakfast's wide brief, which has reignited her passion for the arts, sport, issues and travel, and is still in the thick of Australian and world politics.

Ernst Ligteringen
Chief Executive, Global Reporting Initiative

ELigteringenErnst Ligteringen has been the Chief Executive of Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) for over a decade, moving to Amsterdam in 2002 when GRI was established as an independent organization.  Since that time, GRI has grown from a staff of 10 to having a truly global presence through the work of its Secretariat in Amsterdam and ‘Focal Point’ offices in the United States of America, Brazil, South Africa, China, India andAustralia

Prior to joining GRI Ernst worked for more than 20 years in the international development field, helping to lead a number of high-profile non-governmental and international organizations.  This experience included positions as Executive Director of Oxfam International, Director of Programme Coordination of the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, and Consultant to the World Commission on the Social Dimensionof Globalization at the International Labour Organization (ILO).

In addition, Ernst is a member of the World Economic Forum (WEF) Global Agenda Council on the Role of Business, a member of the international advisory board of the ETHOS Institute of Brazil, and a board member of both The International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC), of which GRI is a founding member, and The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB).

A Dutch National, Ernst has lived in four continents and speaks fluent Dutch, English and Spanish.

Dr Simon Longstaff
Executive Director, St James Ethics Centre

simonlongstaffSimon Longstaff is the Executive Director of the St James Ethics Centre. Established in 1989, St James Ethics Centre is a fully independent forum for the promotion and exploration of ethics. Operating both in Australia and abroad, the Ethics Centre provides a neutral, confidential setting in which ethical questions can be raised, ethical problems explored, and ethical dilemmas resolved. Learn more.

Having completed his secondary education at Knox Grammar School in Sydney, Dr Longstaff spent time working on Groote Eylandt in the Safety Department of BHP subsidiary, GEMCO. Following his time in the Northern Territory he returned to take up full-time study, completing a Bachelor's Degree in Education in Tasmania.

Dr Longstaff was inaugural President of The Australian Association for Professional & Applied Ethics and is a Director of a number of companies. He is a Fellow of the World Economic Forum and a member of the International Advisory Committee of the Foreign Policy Association, based in New York. His first book, Hard Cases, Tough Choices was published in 1997. He is currently preparing a second on the role of conscience.

Professor Jose Fernando Martirena Hernandez

MartinerenaBorn 1960. Graduated from Civil Engineering 1983. He took his PhD degree in 1988, and Doctor in Sciences (Dr.Sc.) in 2004 in subjects related to construction and materials. Part of his post graduate education has taken place in Central Europe (Germany and Switzerland).

Professor Fernando Martirena is the director of the Centro de Investigación y Desarrollo de Estructuras y Materiales, CIDEM (Centre for Research & Development of Structures and Materials) at the Universidad Central de las Villas; a world leading institution in the development and implementation of appropriate technologies for the manufacture of ecomaterials in the field of social housing.

Professor Fernando Martirena headed the emerging movement for the introduction of appropriate technologies in Cuba and Latin America at the beginning of the 1990’s, with a strong focus on lime-pozzolan binders and its application in low strength concrete.  Through the years this movement has evolved to a network -the Latin American Network for the Sustainable Habitat, ecosur (www.ecosur.org)- that encourages south to south technology transfer, with technologies originating from Cuba.

One of the strengths of Professor Martirena’s endeavour is the strong support of fundamental research behind every new development. This has enabled CIDEM to complete the full innovation cycle, from the fundamental science to the grassroots application with a very strong emphasis on mitigation of poverty and disaster response projects from the point of view of the sustainability. The experience and scientific and practical results have granted CIDEM and Prof. Martirena great credibility at both government and community levels. During the last 15 years he has been advocating for an ecologically friendlier lifestyle in major events in Cuba, Latin America, Europa and Australia. In Cuba, Prof. Martirena has made a contribution to policy making through his advisory service to the Cuban Parliament.

The work of CIDEM and Professor Martirena has been widely awarded. The Cuban Academy of Science granted his team two times (2005 and 2012) its annual Prize of the Academy; the Ministry of Science and Environment granted the National Prize on Innovation in 2007, and the same work was awarded by the British foundation “Building & Housing Foundation” together with the Habitat section of the United Nations with the “World Habitat Award 2007”. In 2011 CIDEM was awarded by the UN-HABITAT section the “Scroll of Honour”, the highest recognition to persons and institutions in the field of human settlements, personally delivered by the President of Mexico on the World’s Habitat Day in 2011.

Robert Milbourne
Partner, Norton Rose Fulbright

RobertMilbourneRobert Milbourne is a cross-border mining and resources corporate lawyer based in Brisbane.

Robert provides innovative and strategic commercial advice to international mining and resources companies across the project life cycle from early stage exploration matters to project development and to procurement, commodity sales agreements and operational matters, financings, mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance and corporate and commercial advice.

Robert's experience has included exploration, project development and operational matters for iron ore, manganese, copper, nickel, potash, coal, rare earths, uranium, and bauxite. In addition to mining projects, he has worked on pellotizing plants, steel mills, geothermal power plants, and other complex infrastructure projects. He also has extensive experience advising with respect to political risk insurance matters. Robert has acted on several landmark mining transactions including the development of the major Moatize coal mine in Mozambique, the development of the world's first deep sea mining operations to be located in PNG, the first foreign investment in the privatisation of a major Chinese coal mine operation, and the development and commissioning of a major longwall underground coal mining operation in Queensland.

Robert is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Queensland TC Beirne School of Law where he teaches Mining Law and is a member of the School’s Advisory Council. He has been recognized in the 2012 and 2013 Chambers Global Directories and in the 2011 Asia Pacific Lawyer 500 as a recommended lawyer within the practice area of energy and natural resources. He has also been recognized by Doyle’s guide as a leading mining and resources practitioner in Queensland. In 2012 he was recognized as one of the leading “hot 40” lawyers in Australia and New Zealand by the Australasian Legal Business Journal.

Sam Mostyn
Director, Member of the National Sustainability Council

sammostynMs Mostyn is a company director and sustainability adviser. Trained as a lawyer, Ms Mostyn spent a number of years in policy advisory roles before serving on the senior executive teams at Optus, Cable & Wireless, and Insurance Australia Group. In her business roles she led teams creating sustainability strategies and programs, incorporating responsible principles into core business practices.

Ms Mostyn serves on the boards of Virgin Australia, Transurban and Citibank Australia, and is a Commissioner of the Australian Football League and the National Mental Health Commission. Ms Mostyn chairs the Stakeholder Advisory Council of CSIRO's Climate Adaptation Flagship, and serves on the board of Climateworks Australia, Australian Volunteers International and the Sydney Theatre Company. Ms Mostyn also serves on the board of and is a community interest representative on the board of the Australia Council. Ms Mostyn is a member of the NSW Climate Change Council and served on the Federal Government's Coasts and Climate Change Council.

Previously, Ms Mostyn was a member of the Chief of the Defence Force's womens reference panel, and most recently served as a member of the Review of the Treatment of Women in the Australian Defence Force. Ms Mostyn was also President of the Australian Museum Trust, a board member of Reconciliation Australia, and served on the Crawford Review of Sports Funding in Australia.

James Neville-Smith
Executive Chairman, Neville Smith Forest Products Pty Ltd

JNSJames has been in the forest industry for over 15 years. Prior to joining the industry in the mid 90s James worked in the financial markets for 6 years. James spent time in all areas of the family forestry business for 5 years before taking over as CEO in 2001. James positioned the business (then the largest hardwood timber operation in Australia) for sale in 2004. The family merged the entire business into publically listed forestry group Integrated Tree Cropping Ltd (ITC). The family took a sizable position in the listed structure and James became the CEO domiciled in Perth. As CEO James oversaw two years of exceptional growth, and subsequently orchestrated the sale of ITC to Elders Ltd in 2006. By 2007 James and the Neville Smith family had sold out of the forestry industry entirely.  In 2011 James led his family back into the forest sector. 18 months later Neville Smith Forest Products Pty Ltd (NSFP) owns and operates all of the previously owned forestry assets in Tasmania. The business employs over 112 people directly and many more indirectly. The family orientated group is passionate about communicating the sustainable nature of forestry and its role in a truly sustainable future. The company is proud of its employees, proud of the safety record achieved to date and proud to be back leading a truly sustainable industry employing hard working Australians.

Dianne O’Hara
General Manager – Business Development and Strategy ActewAGL

doharaDianne is responsible for development and ongoing review of core strategic plans for ActewAGL. She is also responsible for the realisation of business development opportunities identified within the strategic framework. Dianne holds a Bachelor of Arts in Professional Writing, a Bachelor of Laws (Hons) and a Masters in Public Law.


Richard Rowe

rroweRichard Rowe is Sustainability Manager for BlueScope Steel’s Australian Markets and leads the company’s sustainability professionals within Sales and Marketing. Richard has a strong financial / commercial background and transitioned into the sustainability after a year’s sabbatical where he focused on living sustainably and developing community based sustainability projects. Richard has undertaken post graduate studies in Strategic Foresight and Sustainability.


Dr Michael Smith
Research Fellow, Fenner School of Environment and Society, The Australian National University

michaelsmithDr Michael Smith has been a Research Fellow at the Australian National University Fenner School of Environment and Society since 2006. Dr Smith also co-founded and was Research Director of the Natural Edge Project (TNEP) (2002-2009), an Australian sustainability think tank. He has been assisting the Forum through drafting "Pre" and "Post" Forum reports, consensus policy statements, and co-authoring and launching, with former TNEP colleagues, a number of publications and industry reports.

He is lead author of Cents and Sustainability: Securing Our Common Future by Decoupling Economic Growth from Environmental Pressures (2010), the first publication to provide a detailed guide and realistic strategy, post the global financial crisis, to boost economic and jobs growth whilst reducing environmental pressures and poverty. This publication, co-authored with Karlson 'Charlie' Hargroves (Adelaide and Curtin Uni) and Cheryl Desha (GUT), was recently ranked 5th by Cambridge University in its top "Top 40 Sustainability Books for 2010" list.

Dr Smith has co-authored industry sector sustainability action plans with Philip Toyne, and former TNEP colleagues, including the Australian Council of Infrastructure and Development's 2003 Sustainability Framework and the detailed Sustainability Action Plan by the Australian Timber, Timber Products and Paper Council (A3P). These were formally launched at the Forum in 2003 and 2006 respectively.

Since 2009, Dr Smith has researched and developed the comprehensive Water Efficiency Opportunities Web Portal and new water efficiency best practice guides for the Commonwealth Government. He also finished the research and development of the first ever climate change adaptation online textbook, funded by the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, which he teaches at ANU. He is currently leading a consortium to research and develop energy efficiency opportunity best practice guides for the COAG National Framework for Energy Efficiency and the Commonwealth Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism. This will contribute to the development of the official government "energy efficiency exchange" web portal for business.
Dr Smith was nominated in 2010 by the Commonwealth Government to assist the IPCC with the development of the next IPCC assessment. He also serves as an external expert advisor to the UNEP International Resource Panel.

Siobhan Toohill
Head of Sustainability and Community, Westpac

SiobhanToohillSiobhan Toohill is Head of Sustainability and Community at Westpac where she leads the organisation's sustainability strategy - shaped around addressing pressing social issues including responding to demographic change, economic solutions to environmental challenges and helping customers achieve sustainable financial futures.She is also responsible for community partnerships and the Westpac Foundation. She was previously General Manager, Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability for Stockland. Siobhan is also a director of the Australian Building Codes Board.

Peter Verwer
Chief Executive, Property Council of Australia

PeterVerwerPeter Verwer is Chief Executive of the Property Council Australia, which is the nation’s leading advocate for the $670 billion investment property industry. As well as pursuing its core business of advocacy and public affairs, the Property Council operates learning, research, publishing and networking businesses. Peter’s current political priorities are tax modernisation, sustainability, finance and regulatory reform.

Peter is a member of many public and private sector bodies, including:

  • Chair - Livable Housing Australia
  • Chair - Construction Forecasting Council
  • Chair - NCTC-MGAG Business Advisory Group
  • Australian Statistics Advisory Council
  • Australian Construction Industry Forum
  • Australian Sustainable Built Environment Council
  • Business Coalition for Tax Reform
  • Green Building Council of Australia
  • Investment Property Databank Australia

The Property Council employs 97 people around the country and generates annual revenues of $26 million. The Federal Government has appointed Peter one of six Disability Community Leaders. He is also a Life Fellow of the Green Building Council of Australia, an Honorary Fellow of the Australian Institute of Quantity Surveyors and a Fellow of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors.

The Hon Tony Windsor MLA
Chair, Parliamentary Committee into the Murray Darling Basin Plan


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