Simon AdcockManager, Customer, Information and Technology (CIO), Wollondilly Shire Council
Simon has been working in IT since 1997. With a focus on customer service and business improvement Simon has helped many organisations through digital transformation. Now at Wollondilly, one of Australia’s fastest growing councils, Simon is improving efficiency, productivity and customer experience through the implementation of the very best available technology.
Jacqui AllenDirector Connected City , City of Hobart
As Director, Connected City at the City of Hobart, Jacqui’s responsibilities include Community Programs, Economic Development, Smart and Sustainable Cities and Environmental Health, with an emphasis on strategy and programs that bring together the three pillars of economic, social and environmental activity.
A key focus is the continuing implementation of Smart City strategies for community and economic benefit through innovative and integrated technology and advancing a sustainability agenda to support Hobart’s goal of being one of the world’s best small capital cities.
Starting her working life in performing arts management, Jacqui draws on this background alongside extensive experience in the public sectors of Western Australia and Tasmania. Prior to commencing with the City, Jacqui was responsible for delivering economic stimulus support to the Cultural, Creative Industries, Events, Tourism and Hospitality sectors during COVID-19 as a Deputy Secretary at the Tasmanian Department of State Growth.
A passionate advocate for the importance of effective public sector organisations, Jacqui is recognised nationally as a practitioner in public value strategy development and delivery.
Jacqui has a Bachelor of Arts, Postgraduate Diploma of Business and an Executive Masters of Public Administration.
Anne AndrewsExecutive Manager – Growth and Investment, Broken Hill City Council
Anne’s passion is to cultivate opportunities and relationships at a local, State and Federal level, attract investment, grow the economy of Far West NSW and showcase the benefits of living in rural, regional and remote Australia.
Anne has a vast portfolio that includes economic development, City liveability, grant management, coordinating Council’s role in the visitor economy and film industry liaison. Anne is part of a committed team that works to scale big city solutions to meet the needs of a smaller community.
With more than 25 years’ experience in business, media, events, and communications across a range of industries, Anne is energised by projects that improve the capacity of local regions, create sustainable social change through individual and group action and build on leadership opportunities and diversity in regional communities.
Kendall BanfieldSenior Transport Planner, Inner West Council
Kendall grew up in Sydney and has had a lifelong interest in urban planning and sustainability issues, leading him to gain university qualifications in environmental management and urban planning. His career of several decades has been in the areas of land use planning, transport planning and sustainability management. In this time he has worked for local councils, NSW Government agencies, universities and planning consultancies. Kendall is now a Senior Transport Planner at Inner West Council where one of his projects is the development of a new Council parking strategy. In undertaking this project he is interested in how parking policy reform can further Council’s aims to make the Inner West more liveable, affordable and sustainable.
Paul BarnesCoordinator - Resilient Futures Collective, University of Sydney
Dr Paul Barnes is the Judith Neilson Research Fellow (Disaster Resilience) at the University of New South Wales and Coordinator of the ‘Resilient Futures Collective’ - a cross-faculty initiative.
He has experience from specialist roles in applied emergency and risk management, and policy development, at both State and Federal levels and as a tenured academic.
He also serves as a visiting Professorial Fellow attached to the Torrens Resilience Initiative at Flinders University, Adelaide, an adjunct Associate Professor within the School of Engineering & Information Technology at UNSW/ADFA, and as a Senior Fellow at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute.
He is a Member of the International Military Council on Climate & Security (Washington DC), the World Economic Forum Expert Network on Risk & Resilience, and a (Non-Resident) Associate Fellow of the Geneva Centre for Security Policy.
Jack BartonManager, Geospatial Research Innovations and Development, University of New South Wales
Dr Jack Barton manages the Geospatial Research Innovation and Development (GRID) lab at the University of New South Wales undertaking research into Digital Twins, LiDAR applications and 3D urban decision support systems. Jack is a Chief Investigator on the ARC Resilient Intelligent Infrastructure Systems Industry Transformation Research Hub, ARC Centre for Next-Gen Architectural Manufacturing and an Adjunct Professor at the Far Eastern University, Manila.
Jack is experienced in working in a cross-disciplinary, multi-stakeholder engagement environments and collaborates closely with research, industry and government stakeholders nationally and internationally, having worked as a Senior Research Fellow, City Futures Research Centre (2004–2010), Urban Data eResearch Facilitator at the Australian Urban Research Infrastructure Network (AURIN, 2013–2017) and as Associate, Digital Delivery at SGS Economics and Planning (2018–2019).
Jack completed his PhD in Architecture (2008) developing a 3D Spatial Decision Support System for the Management of Public Housing. He has managed his own consultancy for over two decades specialising in urban modelling/simulation and 3D geospatial analysis. Contracts include working as 3D Project Manager for the 15th Asian Games Doha 2006 with Spinifex Interactive, 3D scoping reports AURIN (2012), City of Sydney (2006), Sydney City Map 2000, winning East Darling Harbour (Barangaroo) competition entry with Hill/Thallis/Berkemyer (2006) and visualisations for Sydney Sustainable 2030 (2008) and Car-free George St. (2010).
Jack sits on Scientific Committees for Urban Data Management Society (UDMS) and International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ISPRS). He has presented keynote addresses at OSGIS (Nottingham, 2014), SIMPI (Manila, 2016), co-convened the International Climate Change Disaster Management conference (GI4DM2020), 3DGeoInfo22, convened MicroSimSym14 MicroSimulation Symposium with the National Centre for Economic Modelling (NATSEM). Jack was on the AURIN Management Committee and Academic Subcommittee (2013–2017) and actively participates in the Smart Cities Council Australia New Zealand Digital Twin Challenge.
Matthew BlackmoreMayor, Strathfield Council
Elisa BourkeDeputy Program Manager, Intelligent Water Networks
Elisa Bourke is the Deputy Program Manager for Intelligent Water Networks where she oversees a number of projects that trial and showcase new technologies, innovations and thinking for water corporations and provide development opportunities for their emerging leaders.
Elisa is an experienced Manager, with a demonstrated history of working in the utilities, food and beverage industries
Sharon BowmanManager, Technology and Transformation, Hornsby Shire Council
Sharon is a service focused ICT leader, with a passion for transforming customer and user experiences and improving business processes and outcomes using technology. Sharon joined Hornsby Shire Council in January 2020 to lead the IT Operations and Business Transformation functions.
While a relative newbie within local government, Sharon was previously a business consultant for 20 years, working primarily for Local Government clients. She led various projects including strategies, service and process reviews, procurement and contract negotiation, project and change management.
Hon. Geoffrey BrockMinister for Local Government, Minister for Regional Roads, Minister for Veterans Affairs and Minister for Executive Council, South Australia Government
Geoff Brock was born in Frankston, Victoria but was raised in the Mid North of South Australia where he has spent more than half his life working towards a better future for the residents of the Port Pirie region.
Mr Brock was first elected to the Port Pirie Regional Council in 1989, has been a JP since 1993, and served on numerous community committees before being elected mayor in May 2003.
From his arrival in Port Pirie in 1976, Mr Brock worked in Port Pirie's lead smelter, which was eventually acquired by Nyrstar. Prior to that, he was a manager for BP Australia at Port Augusta, covering nearly 80% of the northern areas of South Australia, before becoming an owner-operator of a roadhouse at Port Augusta.
Mr Brock is the Independent State Member for Stuart and was elected on the 19 March 2022. Prior to this, he retired from Nyrstar in September 2007, and in 2009 was elected to the seat of Frome as an Independent Member in a 2009 by-election until a redistribution leading up to the 2022 state election.
Since March 2022, Mr Brock has served as the Minister for Local Government, Minister for Regional Roads and Minister for Veterans Affairs in the Malinauskas Labor cabinet. From 2014-2018, Mr Brock served as the Minister for Regional Development and the Minister for Local Government in the Weatherill Labor Government.
Mr Brock and his partner Lyn have 12 grandchildren between them.
Melissa BurrageManager, Climate Change and Sustainability, Mornington Peninsula Shire Council
Melissa Burrage is an environmental manager whose career has included working in private business, State and local government, in Victoria, interstate and oversees over the past 30 years. She has been with the Mornington Peninsula Shire Council since 2014. During this time, she has delivered award winning programs for the Shire regarding Climate Change and stormwater and water management. She is an Al Gore trained Climate Reality Leader and is driving the change within Mornington Peninsula Shire to deliver on the Climate Emergency.
In 2019, Mornington Peninsula Council declared a Climate Emergency and 12 months later the Council and community focussed Climate Emergency Response Plan was before Council for adoption. This plan was one of the first half dozen Climate Emergency plans adopted in Australia. It won the 2021 Ambition award at the Cities Power Partnership’s Climate Awards and was featured by Carbon Neutral Cities Alliance regarding how communities are using the Climate Emergency to make big new moves to decarbonize locally. It targets net zero GHG emissions for the municipality by 2040 and has 5-year interim emissions targets to keep things on track. It is now into the 3rd year of delivery.
Benjamin BywaterSocial Media Advisor, City of Parramatta
Cindy CassidyDirector, SNSW Drought innovation Hub, Charles Sturt University
Cindy Cassidy has a 25+ year career in science and agriculture including in research and business management at some of Australia’s largest agribusinesses, along with working in regional NSW as CEO of a not for profit farming systems group – Temora based, FarmLink Research.
Cindy is currently the Director of the Southern NSW Drought Resilience and Innovation Hub, where her extensive networks and long history in agriculture are being called on to help shape this next phase of innovation in the sector. She is also a Director with Agrifutures Australia and sits on their Audit Committee.
In 2015 Cindy received the RIRDC (Agrifutures) NSW/ACT Rural Women’s award and used the award to explore national and international approaches to agricultural innovation.
Cindy Cassidy has a Bachelor of Science and Master of Agriculture.
Charles CasuscelliChief Executive Officer, Western Sydney Regional Organisations of Councils (WSROC)
Charles Casuscelli is the CEO of the Western Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils (WSROC) representing the collective interests of Local Government in Western Sydney.
Charles is also appointed as an Australian Defence Force Liaison Officer (Army) and provides advice to the NSW State Government on Emergency Management.
Formerly he was the State Member for Strathfield (Legislative Assembly) between 2011 and 2015, and was appointed Chair of the NSW Parliament’s Transport and Infrastructure Committee.
Charles has held a number of senior executive appointments in the public and private sectors. In particular Charles worked at the NSW Roads and Traffic Authority as the NSW Transport Management Centre’s Project Director/GM and was responsible for the operational management of the NSW road network.
Claire Chaikin-BryanSmart Cities Lead, Lake Macquarie City Council
Claire Chaikin-Bryan is the Smart Cities Lead at Lake Macquarie City Council where she is implementing numerous initiatives to support Council operations and the community. Claire is a qualified Town Planner and Civil and Environmental Engineer with a background in construction planning and project controls, visual arts, graphics design, digital engineering and computer programming. She has been working in the Smart Cities space since 2016 and was the Australia/New Zealand 2020 Smart Cities Emerging Leader.
Nancy ChangExecutive Director - Regulatory Policy, Initiatives and Advice, EPA NSW
Nancy Chang leads the EPA’s Regulatory Policy, Initiatives and Advice Division, responsible for EPA’s operational policy and practice advice.
Prior to joining the NSW EPA in early 2020, Nancy was the Executive Director, Early Childhood Education at the Department of Education and oversaw the NSW Regulatory Authority for Early Childhood Education and Care Services in NSW.
Some of Nancy’s key achievements in the NSW Government include her contributions to the establishment of the National Disability Insurance Scheme, funding for 600 hours of early childhood education in the year before school and major child protection reforms.
Nancy holds a Bachelor of Economics (Economics & Econometrics) and Bachelor of Laws.
John CrawfordChief Information Officer, Wingecarribee Shire Council
An accomplished leader with a background in information technology, I have achieved a strong record of success in driving change and realising innovation through my expertise in technology, strategic leadership and stakeholder engagement. Experienced across end-to-end project and change management, I have successfully leveraged my leadership skill to achieve business and IT development and transformation across numerous roles. Committed to continuous improvement and growth, I have worked across the private and public sectors to build team capabilities, enhance IT functionality, deliver improved client services and implement strategies for future success.
With over 15 years of professional experience providing empowering leadership and strategic direction, I have built a diverse set of skills across information technology, corporate services, project management, risk management, operational governance and staff management. Having completed a Master of Business Administration and Master of Public Administration, in addition to qualifications in PRINCE2, ITIL Systems Engineering, SQL and Windows Server, I am consistently broadening my skill set and complementing my experience with ongoing education.
Elspeth CroninExecutive Manager, Customer Service, Northern Beaches Council
Elspeth Cronin is responsible for Customer Service at Northern Beaches Council. Her career has encompassed senior customer-focused roles in both the private and public sectors, specialising in customer experience and transformation.
Greg CurcioChief Customer and Transformation Officer, City of Stonnington
Greg has had a diverse 20-year career in transformation, digital services, technology, product management, customer experience and operations. An innovative digital product designer and manager across many industries, including owned start-ups, where he bootstrapped his own digital products, delivered go-to-market strategies and grew to new & established industries.
Greg is passionate about customer experience and how technology can play a pivotal role in building a trusted brand – even in the government sector. Key achievements have included launching and delivering new CX teams and cultures, delivering and scaling digital experiences and developing talent for sustainable success.
Stephanie DaviesCouncillor, Cardinia Shire Council
Stephanie Davies is the elected councillor for Toomuc Ward at Cardinia Shire Council.
She’s also a mum of 3 children and works part time as a civil engineer.
As a councillor, Stephanie is keen to deliver in these areas; improved community wellbeing, smart infrastructure, planning and development; and to listen. As a councillor, Stephanie sees her role as representing local interests, helping constituents connect with Council services, and raise feedback or concerns on community members behalf.
Matthew DavisSustainable Resources Engagement Officer, Blacktown City Council
Donna DavisLord Mayor, City of Parramatta
First elected to City of Parramatta in 2017, Cr Donna Davis was elected Lord Mayor in January 2022, and is the third female Lord Mayor in its 160-year history. She is proud to lead this inclusive and diverse Council, which includes eight female Councillors.
As Lord Mayor, Donna is committed to working with the community to ensure the City continues to flourish and evolve, building on the work that has been done over consecutive terms of Council.
Donna is passionate about including the community in Council’s decision making and would like to provide more opportunities for public input. She would also like to ensure appropriate development that complements and respects the existing built and environmental heritage across the City of Parramatta. She is very aware of the pressures on our City and is a strong advocate for the delivery of increased open space, infrastructure, and essential services.
Another priority for the Lord Mayor is cementing Parramatta as the premier arts and culture destination outside of the Sydney CBD through the redevelopment of Riverside Theatres and harnessing the significant local talent that calls Parramatta home in Council’s events, arts, and cultural programming.
Donna has a degree in Arts with Honours and has worked for a number of Federal and State Members of Parliament over the past 10 years. She held positions in the former Department of Employment, Education and Training and was previously involved in establishing funding for regional indigenous communities in Tasmania.
Beck DawsonChief Resilience Officer, Resilient Sydney
Known as the "person paid to worry for Sydney", Beck Dawson champions urban resilience and systems thinking for cities, connected to the global Resilient Cities Network. The Resilient Sydney Office uses robust community research to identify community risks to inform public policy and city-wide action. The Resilient Sydney strategy was launched on 24 July 2018 with five directions and 35 actions for disaster risk reduction and better resilience planning for people in Sydney.
The Resilient Sydney program began in 2015 and is a collaboration of all 33 local government councils in metropolitan Sydney with state government, business and the community. A metropolitan steering committee oversees the funding and operations of the Resilient Sydney Office, which is currently hosted by the City of Sydney.
Mathew DickersonMayor, Dubbo Regional Council
Mathew is a self-made award-winning businessman having started six successful small businesses over a thirty-year period. Mathew’s background has a technological slant and, in addition to his business success in this field, he also communicates widely on the topic. With his weekly column, ‘Tech Talk’, appearing in 120 newspapers across Australia and his weekly radio segment, ‘Tech Talk’, which airs on three regional radio stations.
Brook DixonManaging Director, Delos Delta
Brook is Managing Director of Delos Delta, leading smart city, innovation, economic, sustainability, data, and digital programs for clients around the world.
Expert in both smart tech and sustainability policy, Brook works at the intersection of these fields to drive better environmental and 'green economy' outcomes.
Brook is a former president of the Australian Smart Communities Association, and former Executive of ACT Government.
As a Churchill Fellow, Brook has visited and studied the drivers of digital transformation in Asia, Europe, and the Americas.
Hon. Victor Dominello MPMinister for Customer Service and Digital Government, New South Wales Government
Victor Dominello is a senior Minister in the New South Wales Government and has held various portfolios over the last decade including Aboriginal Affairs, Innovation and Finance.
In 2019 he was appointed the inaugural Minister for Customer Service and in 2021 was also appointed the inaugural Minister for Digital Government.
Victor firmly believes the use of real-time data and technology are the most powerful ways to improve quality of life and reduce suffering.
Victor was a member of the original Crisis Cabinet which led the NSW response to Covid-19 and now sits on the Covid-19 and Economic Recovery Committee.
His particular focus has been on delivering digital solutions such as the Service NSW QR code check-in feature and the real-time data analysis which has informed the state’s decision making.
Victor has been the driving force behind the roll out of the Digital Driver Licence, the establishment of the $2.1b Digital Restart Fund and the rapid expansion of the Service NSW app to include QR code check-ins, the voucher programs, such as Dine and Discover, Covid-19 test alert notifications and the registration of positive rapid antigen tests.
In addition to digital, technology and customer experience, Victor is also obsessed with Batman
David FarmerChief Executive Officer, Central Coast Council
David Farmer commenced in his role as Chief Executive Officer of Central Coast Council on 12 April 2021.
An accountant by profession, David has nearly 40 years’ experience in Local Government in New South Wales and Queensland.
He has been the Chief Executive of four Councils over the past 23 years, being Mudgee in Western NSW, Cairns City in Far North Queensland, his home town of Wollongong and recently as the CEO of Ipswich City Council, the fastest growing Council in Queensland.
Each of his last three roles have involved major challenges in governance and finance. David has assisted an elected Council successfully return from a period of Administration at both Wollongong and Ipswich. At Cairns he oversaw the recovery of the organisation, taking over 5 years after a poorly implemented merger. This involved turning around a deteriorating financial situation and correcting a failed IT systems implementation.
Two of his proudest achievements are the major foreshore projects of the Cairns Esplanade and Wollongong’s Blue Mile.
Across these diverse locations he has been able to partner in developing major industry growth in sectors such as tourism, agribusiness- particularly wine, and urban development. In Wollongong he led the city as it successfully transitioned from its dependence on its traditional industries of coal and steel making into tertiary sectors such as financial services and international education.
David is married to Andrea and together they have four adult children.
Peter FilmerRetired Manager, Events & Sister Cities, Blacktown City Council
Peter is a recently retired Manager in Local Government. He retired in July this year after 45 years of consecutive service both at Blacktown and Penrith Councils.
Commencing in finance Peter changed his career direction in the nineties and was appointed to the Community Relations Officer position which first introduced him to Sister Cities. From there he made Sister Cities one of his passions ultimately achieving Life Membership of Sister Cities Australia. Peter had stewardship of Council’s Sister Cities program for over 20 years partnering with cities in New Zealand, South Korea, China, The Philippines and Liverpool Plains in rural New South Wales. This program has delivered some wonderful commensurate benefits and outcomes.
In terms of community, Peter was responsible for Council’s extensive events program including iconic celebrations for Australia Day, Blacktown City Festival, Blacktown Medieval Fayre, Cities Marathon and more recently developed Council’s Central Business District Activation Strategy.
Peter also has a passion for sport being a former NRL first grade referee, A grade cricketer average golfer. Peter has been President of a number of sporting organisations and is currently serving on the Boards of both the NSW Rugby League Referee’s Association and Springwood Golf Club.
In 2014 Peter was awarded the Order of Australia for service to sport and the community and upon retirement from Council was awarded the Key to the City of Blacktown.
Considering all of the above Peter’s most important achievement is the love of his family, 3 kids and 3 grand children.
Carmel FosterDirector, Corporate Strategy and Resources, Wingecarribee Shire Council
Carmel Foster is the Director, Corporate Strategy and Resourcing. Carmel has held senior management and leadership roles in local government and has also worked in state government and private sectors.
Most recently, Carmel was the Corporate Services Group Manager at Port Stephens Council responsible for finance and procurement, ICT systems development and support, business improvement, human resources, risk management, statutory and commercial property functions and the holiday parks including the recently constructed Koala Sanctuary at Anna Bay.
Carmel is passionate about delivering valued services to the community with a strong focus on business improvement and customer service. Ms Foster has post graduate and master’s Degrees in urban planning and property, is a qualified property valuer and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Naren GangavarapuChief Information Officer, Northern Beaches Council
Naren is an award winning Business Technology Leader with over 20 years’ experience of aligning technology strategies with business outcomes and customer needs. He is an expert at managing the strategy and delivery of large digital business solutions and transformation initiatives in complex services environments, securing positive outcomes and implementing new technologies with commercial value.
Naren is passionate about driving change and helping strengthen an organisation's digital mindset, cyber resilience and innovative culture across the whole of the business and deliver even better value for our customers by making the right investments into the future
Naren has delivered many achievements during his career, including winning the WHICH-50 Digital Experience award for best in community innovation, the 2016 Secretary’s Award for Innovation and the Secretary’s performance award for outstanding performance and commitment to the Department of Planning and Environment.
Brad GrayManager – Sustainable Future, City of Canterbury Bankstown
Jacqueline HiddlestoneIT Innovation Program Manager, Canterbury-Bankstown City Council
Jacqueline is a highly motivated business professional with over 30 years’ strategic business experience successfully delivering flawless execution and operational transformation with a wealth of experience across the public and private sector. She also had experience in academia, teaching and mentoring students to achieve their best.
Jacqueline has a genuine passion for developing vision and strategic directions, and developing solutions to deliver improvements that impact significantly on business’ operations. She is quick to assimilate new ideas, concepts and cutting-edge technologies whilst demonstrating an analytical approach to solving complex problems and responding to the needs of the business.
Developing professionally has been key to my success. She is currently a Doctorate in Business Administration candidate; hold an Executive Graduate Diploma in Business Administration, Graduate Diploma in Company Secretary, Bachelor’s Degree in Commerce and Diplomas in Computing, Financial Planning and Financial Services.
Mark HiggsExecutive Director, Digital Services, NSW Department of Customer Service
Mark Higgs leads the NSW Government digital channels team, focussed on creating customer centric digital experiences.
Mark oversees the OneCX program, working with 10 NSW Government clusters and over 750 websites to build nsw.gov.au as the single location for customers to source information. The website has played a pivotal role during the COVID-19 pandemic making it easy for customers to find the information they need from across government in one place.
Before joining the public service in 2015, Mark managed several award-winning engagement, communications and digital projects for global brands such as Vodafone, Nestlé, nudie, Commonwealth Bank, Woolworths, Weet-Bix, ING Direct, and the Palm Jumeirah Dubai.
Ian HillManaging Director, Adelaide Economic Development Agency
Ian leads the Adelaide Economic Development Agency (AEDA), a fully owned subsidiary of the City of Adelaide, which was established in 2021 to:
• To accelerate economic growth in the City of Adelaide by attracting investment and supporting businesses, festivals and events, as well as visitor, student and residential growth
• To promote the City of Adelaide as destination and ‘magnet city’ and increase its visitation and use by residents, workers, visitors and the community in general; and
• To position the Rundle Mall as the State’s premier retail and commercial shopping precinct in order to sustain retail, business and economic viability
To meet these objectives, AEDA works closely with businesses, industry groups and the State Government.
Ian joined the City of Adelaide in 2018 as the Director Growth and had oversight responsibility of a diverse portfolio encompassing Economic Development and Sustainability, Marketing and Communications and management and strategic development of Council’s $500m property portfolio. A key feature during this time was the delivery of Ten Gigabit Adelaide, Australia’s first city-wide fibre optic network, connecting 1,000 buildings across the CBD and North Adelaide.
Prior to joining the City of Adelaide Ian was the Executive Director for Enterprise Canberra (Australian Capital Territory Government) responsible for marketing the ACT as a tourism destination to national and international audiences, attracting and developing events, growing and promoting arts in the ACT and overseeing the Territory’s sport and recreation program including sporting infrastructure, elite sporting teams and participation programs.
Ian is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and received a Public Service Medal for his contribution to Canberra’s visitor economy.
Greg HoffmanExecutive Director, North West Queensland Regional Organisation of Councils
Greg Hoffman PSM is one of Australia’s leading local government professionals with 50 years’ experience working in State and local government across three states and the Northern Territory. He has held positions of CEO, Commissioner, Managing Director, policy analyst, advocate and industry representative. In his current role as Executive Officer of the North West Queensland Regional Organisation of Councils (NWQROC), Greg’s focus is on the people, policy and politics of the State’s remote and productive North West Region. He is also a co-founder of the Western Queensland Alliance of Councils (WQAC), a collaboration of the three regional organisations of councils covering 22 local government councils in Western Queensland
Greg is passionate about regional Queensland and has devoted a lifetime assisting councils, regional bodies and communities to ensure their voices are heard and that they receive a fair return for the contribution they make to the State and national economies.
Greg holds qualifications in accounting, management, public policy, media and company directorship. He has been recognised for his outstanding contribution to local government having received a Public Service Medal in 1993, a Centenary Medal in 2002 and a National Emergency Medal in 2011 for his contribution to Australian society, government and emergency services.
Sam KernaghanDirector of Resilience Program, Committee of Sydney
Sam Kernaghan is the Director of Resilience Programs at the Committee for Sydney – an organization passionate about the future of Sydney. Over the past 20 years Sam has worked with more than 50 cities across Asia, New Zealand, Australia and the US, to build resilience to growing shocks and stresses – risks that are being intensified by climate change, urbanization and globalization. Sam has led the development and implementation of climate and disaster resilience programs with the Rockefeller Foundations’ 100 Resilient Cities, the Asian Development Bank, and the New York State 2100 Commission. Sam was instrumental in designing Arup’s city resilience index and the characteristics of safe and resilient communities with the International Red Cross. Sam holds a bachelor of economics and a masters of environmental management.
Joanna KubotaExecutive Director, Western Parklands Council
Joanna joined the Western Parkland Councils in January 2021 to drive City Deal projects and facilitate collaboration across all three levels of government to deliver the vision for the Western Parkland City and unlock opportunities for our communities in education, business and employment. An entrepreneurial and determined executive with over 26 years’ experience driving Australia’s economic growth, Joanna had previously provided leadership and strategic advice to Local, State and Federal Governments in the design and implementation of economic development, industry expansion and innovation advancement programs, including the design and implementation of 24 economic development programs, the establishment of a leading start up incubator and the implementation of the Entrepreneurs’ Programme.
Ryan MacVeighManager Digital Solutions Advisory Manager, WSP
Ryan MacVeigh has been championing the adoption of location intelligence for over 12 years’ with diverse clients around Australia and New Zealand. His expertise is in strategic GIS planning, leading implementation of GIS infrastructure and advising on the right tools to deliver innovative, engaging, and informative ways to tell meaningful stories through the use Location Intelligence. He now takes these skills to deliver impactful digital spaces as WSP’s Digital Solutions Advisory Lead.
With experience delivering Digital Twins ranging from singular asset to state-wide scales, Ryan’s expertise and knowledge is sought after by agencies who want to ensure their solutions are future proof, leverage from robust data structures and platforms and, above all, become places where people want to explore and engage.
Jannat MaqboolInterim Chief Executive Officer, Australia and New Zealand, Smart Cities Council
Jannat Maqbool is an Australian-born Punjabi and mother of three based in Waikato, New Zealand. She is a CPA and former CIO with a Masters in Digital Business and is actively engaged in the Australian and New Zealand technology ecosystem. With a focus on leveraging technology in innovative ways to benefit people and the planet, Jannat is the Executive Director at Smart Cities Council Australia New Zealand.
Elyse MarcolinResource Recovery Education Officer, Penrith City Council
Elyse Marcolin is passionate about sustainability and resource recovery and believes in empowering individuals through education. As a Macquarie University, Bachelor of Commerce (Major in Marketing) and Western Sydney University, Master of Teaching graduate, her knowledge of both Marketing and Education have led to a strength in communication, with a unique ability to tailor messages to specific needs and personalities. Elyse commenced her professional career in Marketing, specialising in ethical, social services, and transitioned to work in the Education sector for the next five years. Seeking a career that aligned with her values, she began work as a Resource Recovery Education Officer at Penrith City Council in 2020 and has since worked on diverse projects such as the ‘Never Waste a Chance’ marketing campaign, authored Council’s social media Waste and Resource Recovery communications including the ‘Waste Tips’ series and the "Go Plastic Free" behaviour change movement, and led Waste and Resource Recovery partnerships including work with Council’s City Activation Department to coordinate murals for the Re-Animate Festival.
Leon MarskellManager – City Standards and Compliance, Campbelltown City Council
Leon Marskell is the Manager City Standards and Compliance at Campbelltown City Council.
His career has expanded over 30yrs in Local Government across both New South Wales and Queensland with extensive experience in the implementation and development of innovation and technology in parking.
Some of his achievements to date have been;
• Macquarie Park Parking Scheme (Greenfield site)
• Birtinya Parking Scheme
• Randwick City Council Smart Parking Program
Leon has been very active in the parking technology space having past held Committee positions on both the Australian National Parking Committee and Australian Institute of Local Government Rangers.
He is also qualified in Business Management, Security And Risk, Public Safety (Emergency Management), Work Health and Safety, Project Management and has completed an extensive 16-week Leadership and Management Course through Newcastle university.
Being a qualified Trainer and Assessor, he has travelled the length of the country providing learning and development opportunities to hundreds of local and state government employees.
In his spare time, he enjoys researching technology companies in the hope of one day having solved the “total integration system” for Local Government.
Katie McDermottExecutive Director, Digital Services, Service NSW
Katie brings a wealth of business and leadership experience to Service NSW, with a particular passion for growing and empowering people.
In her current role as Executive Director, Digital Services, Katie leads a diverse group of teams responsible for end-to-end digital customer experiences.
Under Katie’s leadership, Digital Services teams power the Service NSW website, mobile app, and all supporting platform and security architecture. Product teams continually develop innovative new digital experiences for customers, for example, the Dine and Discover program, COVID Safe Check-In, and NSW/VIC Border Permits.
Katie previously led the Projects division as Executive Director, during which time she oversaw revolutionary programs like the Digital Driver Licence and Mobile Service Centres. Prior to joining Service NSW Katie was Director, Central Policy Office and Chief Executive of the Mine Subsidence Board at the NSW Department of Finance, Services, and Innovation.
Before joining the NSW Government Katie was Services and Transformation Manager at Rio Tinto, where she was responsible for human resources, industrial relations, health and safety, and community relations.
Scott MckenryExecutive Officer, Eastern Alliance for Greenhouse Action
Scott McKenry has been EAGA’s Executive Office since the Alliance’s inception in 2013. Over this time, Scott has delivered numerous high profile and innovative climate change mitigation and adaptation projects. Many of these initiatives have extended beyond EAGA’s eight member councils to include the whole local government sector with significant state-wide impacts.
Lisa McLeanChief Executive Officer, NSW Circular
Lisa is a circular economy and zero-carbon business transformation leader. She has been successfully advising industry and governments in developing new policy frameworks and regulations that bring about market change to enable the circular zero-carbon economy over the past 14 years.
This work has covered the energy, water, waste and mobility sectors in the UK and Australia.
Lisa established and led the Open Cities Alliance, a peak industry association with unique membership from government to private sector and research organisations. Open Cities advocates for the circular economy, prosumer rights and new local utility and mobility precinct approaches.
In Australia, Lisa initiated and established the Australian Solar Thermal Association (AUSTELA), advised electric mobility providers, and worked with Flow Systems from a start-up sustainable water utility to its major role in shaping a new sustainable water and now multi-utility market.
Starting her career as a political journalist working in the national press gallery, Lisa moved to advising ministers and premiers on education and climate policy, before heading to the UK to help establish the Clinton Climate Initiative.
Anna MitchellExecutive Manager, Sustainability and Resilience, City of Sydney
Anna leads the City of Sydney’s Sustainability & Resilience team, which sets the vision, targets and action plans for environmental sustainability and urban resilience; and works with internal and external stakeholders to deliver against these goals.
Anna is driven to help organisations become more effective at delivering environmental and resilience outcomes. She enjoys working in a collaborative style to address complex sustainability challenges, using her strengths in project management, change management, facilitation, and communications.
Before joining City of Sydney, Anna worked in the finance sector, state government and consultancy in sustainability and community engagement roles.
Clover MooreLord Mayor, City of Sydney
Clover Moore was elected Lord Mayor of Sydney in 2004, the first popularly elected woman to lead the City of Sydney. She is also the longest serving Mayor since city government incorporation in 1842, elected for her fifth term in December 2021.
Clover also served as an Independent member of the NSW Parliament from March 1988 to September 2012, and was concurrently Lord Mayor and Member for Sydney for 8 years until the State legislated against the one person holding both positions.
Throughout her public life, in both State and Local Governments, Clover has championed progressive policies, achieving reforms which increase government transparency, champion our environment and protect the vulnerable.
As Lord Mayor, Clover initiated Sustainable Sydney 2030, an internationally renowned long term plan to secure Sydney’s future as a leading green liveable and creative city. This plan includes ambitious targets to reduce greenhouse emissions. In 2007, the City became the first government in Australia to be carbon neutral, and in 2014 received the European Solar Prize for its Renewable Energy Master Plan. The City is now using 100% renewable electricity and is on track to meet its 2030 target of reducing emissions by 70% in 2024 - six years early.
Under her leadership, the City of Sydney has developed a global reputation for delivering award winning facilities; protecting and enhancing open space; promoting design excellence for private development; delivering new transport options, particularly safe cycling; promoting and expanding the City’s cultural and creative life and initiating progressive solutions to complex city social problems such as affordable housing and related homelessness.
Michael MosesManaging Director, Australian Parking Consultants
Michael previously managed the Australian Road Research Board nation-wide parking division.
He has 32 years’ hands-on practical experience in parking operations, management and technology throughout Australia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Hong Kong and the United States, holding senior positions with Wilson Parking and the Airport Parking Corporation of America (APCOA).
He has consulted on management of car parking for office buildings, local governments, airports, shopping centres, hospitals and universities and the supply of technology to city councils and the private sector.
His clients include Coles, AMP, Brookfield Multiplex, Colliers and Mirvac In particular, he has provided parking management as well as planning advice to the Cities of Sydney, Adelaide (UPark), Launceston, Newcastle, North Sydney, Stonnington, Melbourne, Launceston, Hornsby Shire Council and Sutherland Shire Council.
Michael completed an update and review of the Austroads Guide to Traffic Management Part 11 Parking (AGTM Part 11) which was published on January 2017.
Michael holds a Bachelor of Business and post graduate marketing qualifications.
Adam MowlamManager Smart Cities, City of Greater Geelong
Dr Adam Mowlam has a wealth of experience leading multidisciplinary teams across all levels of government and a broad range of areas including smart cities, digital twins, spatial sciences, technology innovation, business process integration and data management.
He currently spearheads the Smart Cities Program at the City of Greater Geelong, one of Australia's largest municipalities. Previously he was the Strategic Lead Digital Twins with the Victorian Government and the Manager Smart City Office with Wyndham City Council.
His current role involves thinking beyond the now to develop and deliver smart ‘beyond the curve’ initiatives by fostering a creative and dynamic environment that encourages the creation of new ideas and tests the established thinking. He leads a diverse team heavily focused on addressing transport and environmental challenges and is passionate about data-driven decision making.
Adam graduated from The University of Melbourne with a PhD and both a Bachelor of Geomatics Engineering and Bachelor of Information Systems, he is the current Vice President of Australia Smart Communities Association (ASCA).
Jasmine NguyenMayor, Brimbank City Council
Cr Nguyen was elected Mayor of Brimbank City Council in November 2021; this is her first time as Mayor. She served as Deputy Mayor in her first year in office 2020-2021.
Cr Nguyen is 25 years of age, and has a double degree in Commerce and Economics, speaks English, Vietnamese and German.
Her interests include youth empowerment, multicultural engagement, digital transformation and innovation, climate change and sustainability and mental health.
The daughter of Vietnamese refugees, Cr Nguyen has lived in Brimbank for over 20 years. She was born in Brimbank and proudly attended schools in the local area, and as a youngster she developed a passion for giving back to the West by volunteering and working within the community.
Her parents instilled in her an immense gratitude for being raised in an area that had such rich multicultural diversity. She is passionate about community and driven by innovation, collaboration and grabbing hold of opportunities.
Cr Nguyen decided to run for Council to represent and drive better outcomes for young people and multicultural communities in response to COVID-19; serving and representing almost 211,000 people in one of the largest and the second most disadvantaged municipality in Melbourne.
As a young person of colour and Brimbank Council’s first Vietnamese-Australian Mayor, she also wants to be a role model for future generations. Through her leadership she aims to demonstrate what can be achieved with a willingness to have a go, take every opportunity as a learning opportunity and collaborate with others who are passionate about building resilient and sustainable communities.
Dr Portia OdellDirector, Cities Power Partnership
Portia Odell is Director of the Cities Power Partnership where she leads the delivery of the program’s strategy and impact. She holds a PhD from Curtin University Sustainability Policy Institute and has a history working with communities, startups and governments helping them accelerate their climate projects. She is passionate about advancing the critical work of local governments taking meaningful action on climate change and is interested in the intersection between research, innovation and policy.
Ian OppermannChief Data Scientist, NSW Department of Customer Service
Dr. Ian Oppermann is the NSW Government’s Chief Data Scientist working within the Department of Customer Service. He is also an Industry Professor at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS).
Ian has been recognised as a Global Leader in Data and Analytics (Corinium’s Global Top 100 in 2020 and 2022) spanning the domains of government, industry, academia and standards. Ian has an MBA from the University of London and a PhD in Mobile Telecommunications from Sydney University. Ian is a Fellow of the Institute of Engineers Australia, a Fellow of the IEEE, a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering, a Fellow of the Royal Society of NSW, is a Fellow and Immediate Past President of the Australian Computer Society, and a graduate member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. He is Chair of Australia’s IEC National Committee and JTC1, the NSW AI Review Committee and the NSW Smart Places Advisory Council.
Nuno Pena PiresTransport Planning Coordinator, City of Stonnington
15 years experience in Traffic and Transport Engineering and Planning having worked in both State and Local government in 3 different continents. Worked on major projects such as the Hong Kong – Macau – Zhuhai Bridge, Macau Light Rail, Level Crossing Removals (Melbourne). Has been involved in strategic policy writing (Parking and Cycling Strategies). Very interested in ITS and Technology integration to enable informed decision making.
Shona PorterExecutive Manager City Stategy, Cumberland City Council
An experienced urban planner, Shona leads the City Strategy team for Cumberland City Council. Shona is responsible for the smart places, strategic planning, economic development, place making, community engagement and homelessness functions with a strong focus on delivering outcomes for residents, businesses and industry.
Cumberland City has established a Smart City in Granville and is developing its first community focused Smart Places Strategy. The focus is on achieving benefits for residents and businesses, as well as how smart places can create internal efficiencies within Council.
Having worked across different local government areas and private industry, Shona draws on a decade of experience to lead innovative, place based outcomes for the community and deliver sustainable housing and jobs growth.
Shawn RainesDigital Strategy Specialist, Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council
The world is moving so fast. Are your teams ready? Can they accept changes in process, method and culture? It is Shawn Raines mission to aid teams and organisations on their journeys. Shawn Raines had been with the Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council for nearly 12 years and as a Digital Strategy Specialist for nearly 7 of those years.
Jennifer RamsayExecutive Branch Manager, Place Experience and Communications, City Renewal Authority, ACT Government
Jennifer delivers population-wide outcomes through destination marketing, communications initiatives and stakeholder engagement. At the City Renewal Authority, Jennifer’s team is responsible for increasing city centre activity, providing direction and advice on Authority’s diverse renewal projects and managing internal and external relationships. The agency is charged with shaping the growth of central Canberra to make it a highly liveable place. In a partnership with the community, the Authority aims to create a lively and attractive city heart through design-led urban renewal practice with a focus on social and environmental sustainability.
Michael ReganMayor, Northern Beaches Council
Councillor Michael Regan was the first popularly elected Mayor of Warringah in 2008 and was re-elected in 2012 and 2021. Under his leadership, numerous projects such as the completion of the Narrabeen Lagoon trail and the creation of the All Ability Precinct at Collaroy were implemented.
Warringah was awarded the A.R. Bluett Memorial Award, which recognises the best-performing council in the state. The prestigious award acknowledged a wide range of accomplishments including organisational improvements, a sound financial position, collaboration with community groups and a strong emphasis on projects serving the arts community. Council was also recognised for its excellent infrastructure renewal programs including the Forestville Sporting Facilities.
Prior to being elected to Council, Michael worked in the local government sector for nearly two decades in a range of roles including customer service, cleansing and town planning.
Paul RobinsonGeneral Manager, Roadmarking Industry Association of Australia
Paul Robinson is the General Manager of the Roadmarking Industry Association of Australia (RIAA). The RIAA is the peak industry body for road marking and pavement t markings, including car parks, airfields, service stations, warehouses, and so on.
The RIAA works with State Government, Local Government, road safety stakeholders, Australian Standards, and a range of industry regulators. RIAA members are bound by a code of conduct and commuted to professional standards.
Paul has an extensive background in Associations management, events, and public speaking.
James RupraiDirector – City Development, Shoalhaven City Council
Paul SidwellChief Technology Officer, Wilson Parking Australia
Harman SinghSmart Cities and Places Lead, GHD
Harman is the Smart Cities and Places Lead at GHD Digital, where he pursues his passion of developing innovative solutions for Smart Cities, Precincts & Buildings. He brings with him 20 years of global work experience with various technology-related businesses in USA, Dubai, India and Australia. Harman is a Certified Smart Cities Practitioner and a regular speaker on smart technologies, applied innovation and digital transformation.
In the past, he served as the Chief Innovation Officer at Brady Family of Companies, USA, where he led the organisation to be awarded the “Most Innovative Workplace” in North Carolina in 2017. He also led the development of an IoT platform for smart buildings, built on world leading SAS Analytics technology. Harman holds an MBA from London Business School and currently serves on Standards Australia’s committee for Smart City Systems with the goal to foster the development of standards in this evolving space.
Stela SolarDirector – National Artificial Intelligence Centre, CSIRO
Stela Solar is passionate about removing barriers to positive technology adoption and engagement. Over the past 15 years, Stela has cultivated expertise in capturing new revenue opportunities presented by emerging technologies, particularly through business model transformation. With most recent experience as Global Director of AI Solutions Sales and Strategy at Microsoft, Stela's experiences across business development, strategy, ecosystem development, marketing and product management inform her insights surrounding cross-organisational factors affecting an organisation’s ability to capture an advantage.
Stela is returning to Australia after seven years in the US to lead the National AI Centre.
Parul SoodGeneral Manager – Waste Solutions, Auckland Council
Parul is an experienced public service leader, working with a diverse team that is passionate about turning waste to resources and striving for a circular economy. She is currently the General Manager for waste at Auckland Council. Parul has extensive knowledge of local government processes, legislative context and the challenges local government face around waste management and resource recovery. She has worked in local government for almost two decades in New Zealand and understands the issues and opportunities that local government has in trying to achieve the goal of zero waste. Parul is also a board member and Deputy Chair of WasteMINZ.
Amit SrivastavaFormer Local Government Chief Technology Officer, City of Ryde
Amit has 25 years of industry experience, the majority of which is in leading accounts/programs/services/departments of varying complexities and sizes in industries such as local government, state government, disability, health, education, airlines, airports, utilities, and law enforcement in an ever-dynamic world.
He is a MBA (Distinction) from UK, and Masters in Computers from India.
Joy SulimanActing Manager, Library and Community Services, City of Canada Bay
Joy brings together her diverse experience in learning technology, workshop facilitation, research, professional development training, regional outreach, community engagement, and collection management in her role with City of Canada Bay Libraries. After successfully establishing The Learning Space in Rhodes, she now leads a multi-disciplinary team of children’s, youth, outreach, emerging technology and local studies specialists that works alongside the community at City of Canada Bay’s three libraries. Together, they are working to re-imagine a very different kind of public library service with community engagement and programs at its core.
Jay SuvaalMayor, Cessnock City Council
Jay Suvaal is deeply committed to the Cessnock Community. He grew up in Kearsley, where he attended the local public primary school before enrolling at Mt View High School, Cessnock. He now lives in West Cessnock with his wife Emily and their young sons Ethan and Caleb. He is active in the community and enjoys camping, fishing and playing hockey.
In 2016, Jay was elected to Cessnock City Council and in 2021 he became the city’s youngest Mayor. He has brought new ideas and a collaborative approach to the Council to achieve the best outcomes for the community. He is committed to listening to the people to ensure the community benefits from decisions of the Council.
Having had to travel out of the Cessnock area to pursue his own career, Jay is committed to supporting the development of a strong local economy that support business growth and provides employment and opportunities for the people who live in the Cessnock Local Government Area.
Jay has professional experience working for both State and Federal Governments and understands the importance of building strong and positive relationships to achieve good outcomes. He brings this understanding to his role as Mayor.
Alina Tamrakar MaskeyResource Recovery Engagement Officer, Cumberland City Council
Alina is a Project Officer (Resource Recovery) at Cumberland City Council.
Alina has a background in Environmental Science and more than 10 years of experience in local government managing waste management and community engagement projects and sustainability initiatives. In her current role she is involved in developing and implementing resource recovery initiatives including mobile community recycling service, food waste reduction, asbestos awareness, and community engagement programs.
Alina is committed to deliver a holistic program for diverse stake holders ranging from schools to community groups to help achieve their sustainability goals. Alina has strong passion in communicating sustainability through education, knowledge sharing and action.
Jitendra TomarFounder, Localvolts
Jitendra has worked in a variety of roles in companies serving consumers, utilities, airlines, and governments. He has formed and participated in a number of startups, including Energy Response Pty Ltd, a company that created an electricity demand response industry in Australia and New Zealand. This business is now part of the enel X group.
He earned a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering from McGill University, and a Master of Business Administration from Western University’s Richard Ivey School of Business.
Jitendra is the founder and creator of Localvolts, an authorised retailer operating a peer-to-peer electricity market in the National Electricity Market.
Kate TrumbullHead of Policy and External Affairs, Car Next Door
Kate is the Head of Policy and External Affairs at Car Next Door - Australia's largest peer-to-peer car sharing platform. Before joining Car Next Door, Kate worked to promote sustainable transport with the City of Port Phillip, was a lawyer focusing on carbon reduction and energy projects, and a policy advisor in the NSW Attorney General's department. Kate is passionate about reducing the impact of private car ownership on our cities and our planet through tech-enabled local car-sharing.
Hon. Wendy TuckermanMinister for Local Government, New South Wales Government
The Hon. Wendy Tuckerman MP is the Minister for Local Government and Member for Goulburn.
Mrs Tuckerman has extensive experience in local government after serving 17 years as a Councillor, Mayor and Administrator.
The Minister knows that local councils are crucial to the NSW economy and building strong, connected and resilient communities.
Mrs Tuckerman’s key priority is to guide and support the sector that invests more than $12 billion each year in infrastructure, facilities and services, manages $178 billion in assets, and employs more than 48,000 people across the State.
Elected as a Councillor in 2004 to Boorowa Council, Mrs Tuckerman then become the first female Mayor of Boorowa in 2007. In 2015 she was elected Chair of the Canberra Region Joint Organisation until 2016 when Mrs Tuckerman was subsequently appointed Administrator of the new Hilltops Council. She was again elected as a Councillor in 2017.
Mrs Tuckerman was elected to the Parliament of NSW on 23 March 2019 as the Member for Goulburn.
On 21 December 2021, Mrs Tuckerman was sworn in as Minister for Local Government.
The Minister has a number of responsibilities including Coastal Management, Public Reserves, Graffiti Control, and Companion Animals and guiding and assisting the State’s 128 local councils, 13 joint organisations and nine county councils.
Megan TurnleyManager Yarra CityLab, Strategy and Transformation Lead, Yarra City Council
Megan Turnley is a strategy and transformation specialist. She has delivered national and global change programs across the Engineering, Defense, Science and Innovation sectors. Since 2019 she has been leading the City of Yarra's smart technology hub - Yarra CityLab. Operating as an internal consultant, Megan provides the strategic direction to influence and advance smart city opportunities, and the business and human-centred services which are critical to implement and sustain change. Megan is a Smart Cities Certified Practitioner, a member of the Change Management Institute, and has contributed to several industry boardroom discussions including the Prime Minister’s Industry 4.0 Taskforce and the National Industry 4.0 Taskforce.
Karen TwitchettDirector, Workforce and Technology, Northern Beaches Council
Karen Twitchett is the Director of Workforce and Technology at the Northern Beaches Council and leads the people function, information and digital technology, and strategy and organisational performance divisions. Karen has extensive leadership experience in Australia and Asia Pacific in human resources, corporate affairs, IT deployment, change management, and organisational development. Her career spans multiple sectors including major corporates, blue-collar and non-government organisations. She is also the author of Sweet and Unsavoury: case stories for people managers. This is Karen’s first role in local government and she brings a new perspective to the executive leadership team. While at Council Karen has sponsored the implementation of a workforce management system integrated with payroll, rostering and time and attendance.
Linda Weatherson PSMGeneral Manager – Community City Services, City of Melbourne
Ken WelshTeam Lead - Strategic Transport Planning, Inner West Council
Ken is currently the Team Lead of Strategic Transport Planning with Inner West Council. He has nearly 40 years of experience in both consultancy and local government. Much of his experience and insights have been gained working international in SE Asia, The Middle East, North America, Europe and Africa. Projects have included integrated transport strategies, electric vehicle encouragement policies and guided electric transport, as well as road safety and behavioural change programs.
He has recently stepped down from the position of Director of Future Transport for the, Dubai-based, International Centre for Integrated Urban Planning and Transport after 7 years at the helm.
Ken's passion is technological innovation in transport, with his current focus being autonomous vehicles, electric vehicles and emerging disruptive technologies.
Stephen WitherdenSenior Technical Director, Software Engineering, Beca
With a background in operations research, Stephen has spent the last 2 decades as a software engineer building solutions that bring modelling & simulation, engineering-heavy data and visualisation together to improve organisational decision making. He’s currently obsessed with digital twins and identifying tangible applications of engineering data in operational contexts. Stephen is Technical Fellow for Software engineering at Beca and sits on the Asia Pacific Simulation Alliance expert panel.
Adam WorthingtonData and Visualisation Manager, Penrith City Council
Adam Worthington’s role is to manage the GIS Team, provide direction and support to improve our Geographic Information Systems and improve access to utilize data for both internal and external customers.
Adam has been working in the space of GIS, Information Technology, Surveying and Civil Engineering for approx. 30 years at Local and State Government levels and in the private sector.
Geographic Information Systems and Spatial data is a constantly evolving technology that allows people to view, analyse, measure, and provide insights into the World around us. I really enjoy working in this field at Penrith City Council as the Departments can be very diverse with their GIS data and mapping requirements.
Adam has travelled to many countries and enjoy motorcycle touring, riding to the middle of Australia to visit Uluru was a great experience and I hope to travel as much as possible in future years.
Susan WynneMayor, Woollahra Municipal Council
Susan Wynne has served on Woollahra Council since 2008 representing the Vaucluse Ward. In 2011 she was elected to the role of Mayor and became the youngest female Mayor of Woollahra Council and only the 9th female Mayor in over 150 years. She served as Deputy Mayor for three years from 2015 - 2017 and was elected Mayor in 2017, in 2020 (for a whole 3 months due to Council elections being delayed) and re-elected in 2022.
She is incredibly passionate about local government and is also Junior Vice President of Southern Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils (SSROC).
She has a particular focus on environmental sustainability and supporting local business and has been an active champion for women with the hope of seeing more female representation in local government.
Susan began her career in the corporate sector, holding senior positions in marketing and communications with a key focus on brand and business strategy. She is a Non-Executive Director of ASX listed boards MoneyMe and Clime Investment Management, a business advisor and is a strong advocate for positive social change including being National Chair of Red Cross Society of Women Leaders and a member of the Sapphire Committee focused on ocean conservation.