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BHERT Governance


The BHERT Board is comprised of vice-chancellors and senior representatives from industry. The current Board of Directors are:

Susan Bannigan, B/HERT Board Member

Susan Bannigan, President
Chief Executive Officer, Westpac Bicentennial Foundation

"An environment where industry and academia actively engage will accelerate the path to technological, scientific and economic breakthrough for Australia".

Susan has over 25 years' experience in the financial services industry in Europe and Australia. She joined Westpac in 1995 and has held senior roles in finance, treasury and business leadership across the Westpac Group.

From 2007-2012 Susan was the Chief Financial Officer of RAMS with responsibility for the IT, finance, legal and compliance functions. Susan became Executive Officer of the Westpac Foundation in February 2012 where she worked closely with community groups, social entrepreneurs and the business sector.

In 2014 she was appointed CEO of the Westpac Bicentennial Foundation. The Westpac Bicentennial Foundation has an exclusive focus on the education of Australia's next generation of leaders. Leaders who will address the key challenges and opportunities facing our nation by backing research, innovation and social change that will shape a better future for Australia.

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Professor Caroline McMillen, B/HERT Board Member

Professor Caroline McMillen
Vice-Chancellor, University of Newcastle

"Strong and productive partnerships between universities and business, which translate world-class research into innovation with impact, are essential for Australia's future".

Professor Caroline McMillen joined the University of Newcastle as Vice-Chancellor and President in October 2011.

Professor McMillen has served in senior leadership positions at Monash University, the University of Adelaide and the University of South Australia. She has held national and international roles in industry engagement, medical and health research, strategy and policy development.

Professor McMillen is a Business Event Sydney Ambassador, and was a member of the NSW Innovation and Productivity Council from 2014-2015. She has served on a range of international disciplinary bodies. Industry groups and boards, including the national Automotive Industry Innovation Council, and the South Australian Premier's Climate Change Council. Professor McMillen has also been Convenor of the New South Wales Vice-Chancellor's Committee.

As a medical researcher, Professor McMillen is internationally recognised for her work on the impact of the nutritional environment before birth on the risk of developing cardiovascular disease and obesity in adult life. Professor McMillen's research group has been funded continuously for two decades by both the Australian Research Council and the National Health and Medical Research Council. She has published more than 200 publications and been invited to present at more than 70 international and national meetings.

Over her career, Professor McMillen has trained more than 50 Honours and PhD students who have gone on to win national honours and fellowships and made significant contributions in diverse careers, including research, industry, medicine, dentistry, veterinary science and education.

Professor McMillen is passionate about developing the relationship between Australia and the Asia-Pacific region and committed to building collaborative partnerships between universities, government, industry and communities that directly contribute to the economic, environmental, social and cultural health of Australia

Professor McMillen is an inaugural Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences, and a Bragg Member of the Royal Institution, Australia. She holds a BA (Honours) and Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Oxford, and completed her medical training graduating with an MB, B Chir at the University of Cambridge.

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Professor Colin Stirling, B/HERT Board Member

Professor Colin Stirling
Vice-Chancellor, Flinders University

"Universities are a vital part of the innovation ecosystem but must do more to connect with business in order to maximise their impact".

A highly awarded academic who has taught and researched at some of the world's leading universities, Professor Colin Stirling joined Flinders University in January 2015 for a 5 year term as its eighth Vice-Chancellor.

Professor Stirling has more than 12 years' experience of university senior management, including Vice-President of the University of Manchester (UK) and Provost and Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Curtin University, Western Australia.

Born and educated in Scotland, Professor Stirling's qualifications include a Bachelor of Science (Microbiology) with first class honours from the University of Edinburgh and a PhD in genetics from the University of Glasgow, Scotland.

He consolidated his distinguished academic career as Professor of Genetics at the University of Manchester where he was awarded several prestigious research fellowships and prizes.

Throughout his academic career, Professor Stirling has established a record of leadership, innovation and successful change management in Higher Education.

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Ken Boal, President B/HERT

Ken Boal
Vice-President, Cisco Systems Australia Pty Ltd

“If you’re a business leader and […] you’re not tapping into the science and research capacity in our research ecosystem, you’re going to miss out”.

As Vice President of Cisco Australia and New Zealand, Ken sets out a clear roadmap for customers and partners to take advantage of market transitions, such as the Internet of Everything and cloud, increase productivity and create competitive advantage through the innovative use of technology.

On joining Cisco in 2004 Ken led the company’s public sector engagement with Australia’s federal, state and territory governments, defence, education and healthcare. This role was then expanded to include growth and development in the private sector.

Ken is committed to working with the higher education sector to enhance Australia’s role in the knowledge economy. He has also held a leadership position within Cisco’s primary education initiative, the Cisco Networking Academy, where he manages the team responsible for the delivery of an ICT training program that helps to improve the career and education opportunities for over 20,000 Australians and New Zealanders annually.

Ken holds a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering (Communication & Electronics) from the University of Queensland.

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Professor Ashley Goldsworthy, B/HERT Board Member

Professor Ashley Goldsworthy AO OBE KM
Director, GTA Human Resources Ltd

"There's an enormous potential for industry and business to derive increased value from links with universities, and for universities similarly to benefit from increased clarity on the needs and motivations of its relevant stakeholders".

Ashley has an extensive business career extending over 50 years, as a CEO, Chairman, or Director of large companies, both domestic and international, covering banking, insurance, finance, housing, construction, information technology, property development, hospitality and gaming.

He is a past member of the Business Council of Australia and Former Director of Economic Statistics for the Australian Government. In 1996 the Peoples Republic of China honoured him by electing him a Fellow of the Chinese Institute of Electronics.

His extensive career in information technology includes serving as the World President of the International Federation for Information Processing.

Currently Chairman of companies in finance, education and training, information technology, and human resources, Ashley was also Former Dean of the School of Business and Professor of Leadership at Bond University.

He was Past Federal President of the Liberal Party of Australia and Founder of B/HERT in 1990 and Past President and Executive Director.

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