Meet the selected WILD 2022 cohort

Alison Thistlewaite – Operations Manager, MecRx Pty Ltd

Alison is the Operations Manager at MycRx, where she has worked since 2020. Prior to joining MycRx Alison held both project and scientific management roles at the Centre for Drug Candidate Optimisation (CDCO, Monash University), where she developed project management expertise and over 15 years of experience in lead optimisation of small molecule therapeutics to treat cancer and neglected diseases.

Early in her career Alison worked as an industrial chemist for Caltex Australia and also for a start-up biotech working on synthetic scale-up of small molecule APIs. Alison holds a PhD (organic chemistry) from QUT and also a Masters of Medical Science (Drug Development) from UNSW.

Allira Hudson-Gofers – Practice Group Leader – Engineering and ICT Patents – Spruson & Ferguson

Allira Hudson-Gofers is a Principal of Spruson &Ferguson and heads up the Engineering and ICT Patents Practice. She has extensive experience and a keen interest in medical devices, providing intellectual property and regulatory advice to her clients in this space. Her qualifications and expertise also span robotics and control systems, engineering, sport and health technologies, transportation, consumer products, building construction, mining, agriculture, and manufacturing.

Allira supports her clients to achieve sustainable competitive advantage by aligning intellectual property strategy to commercial objectives. Allira also has substantial experience in sport through state and national representation and involvement in club and state committees.

Amanda Buttery – National Manager Clinical Evidence, National Heart Foundation of Australia

Amanda leads the National Heart Foundation’s strategic clinical evidence agenda. She manages the development of evidenced-based clinical guidelines, position statements, policies and their implementation to improve heart health for all Australians. She has 25 years of international health care experience and has a PhD in Gerontology from King’s College London. She has held previous roles as an Innovation Fellow in the Academic Health Science Network in London and Cambridge.

She has served as a panel reviewer on the Innovate UK led Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) to select the most promising ideas in healthcare for acceleration and implementation at scale.

Dr Angela Montgomery – Director, Cortext

Dr Angie Montgomery is a health psychologist and workplace psychological safety and mental health and wellbeing specialist. Angie’s work and research has focused on system-level and individual factors that contribute to mentally healthy workplaces. She has contributed to the development and evaluation of health promotion initiatives and projects for both broad and targeted populations and developed national-level organisational Psychological Safety strategy for government organisations.

A special interest of Angie’s is data analytics and interpretation. She is passionate about the role of data in formulating best practice approaches, evaluation and using data to inform continuous development of strategic initiatives.

Anne Conlon – Senior Development Manager, Sita Aerospace

Anne Conlon – Senior Development Manager at Sita Aerospace, holds a BSc in Computer Applications (Hons). A seasoned software engineering leader with many years experience in building  award-winning teams and delivering successful solutions in border management, banking, publishing and telecommunications.

As a lifelong learner, she is committed to a culture of continuous improvement and as part of the Sita Sydney graduate programme which she developed, now in its third year, she focused on inclusion, diversity and developing new talent. She promotes women in software engineering, and has tutored with girls programming network (GPN) and is a mentor with Project F.

Branwen Morgan – Mission lead, CSIRO

Associate Professor Branwen Morgan is currently leading the Antimicrobial Resistance Mission for CSIRO. Previously, she was based at the University of Technology Sydney where she was the managing director and co-founder of the OUTBREAK project. Branwen is best known as a science strategy and corporate affairs consultant and has worked for a wide variety of not-for-profit and industry organisations in the UK and Australia– including the Garvan Institute of Medical Research and AstraZeneca.

Her strong interest in research translation saw her being employed as a journalist and communications professional by Springer Nature, the ABC, and Innovation Science Australia.

Claire Rosenberg

Claire Rosenberg – Senior Manager, Global Supply Chain & Digital Transformation, The LEGO Group

Claire Rosenberg has over ten years of experience in Supply Chain and Technology in Australia, Asia, and Europe. She holds a Master’s degree in engineering from the University of Cambridge and a Bachelors’ degree in commerce from the University of Melbourne. Based in Melbourne, she is the Global Senior Manager of Supply Chain and Digital Transformation at The LEGO Group, leading a team of information technology engineers to build digital products to enable future business growth, across manufacturing and supply chain.

In parallel to this, Claire is a member of The LEGO Group’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee for Global Operations.

Elise Needham – Associate Director, Biopharmaceuticals, Product Management Operations, Boehringer Ingelheim

Elise is Associate Director of Biopharmaceuticals Product Management for Boehringer Ingelheim, Germany and is building her own health-related start-up company. Previously, Elise was Scientific Advisor, Immunology with Bristol-Myers Squibb, Australia and Commercial Manager at Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute. Elise has a Bachelor of Science (Honours) from Monash University, a PhD in neuroscience research and a Graduate Diploma in Intellectual Property Law, both from the University of Melbourne.

The WILD for STEM program is a highly valued opportunity for Elise to reach a long-held goal of serving on boards in the Australian health sector to contribute her experience.

Emily Harris – Senior Civil Engineer, Aurecon

Emily Harris is a highly motivated chartered senior civil engineer with engineering company Aurecon. Emily’s strong interpersonal and communication skills have enabled her to successfully deliver some of Victoria’s key infrastructure projects. She is also passionate about sustainability and is involved in initiatives to embed this within the transport sector. Emily is a strong advocate for her industry evidence by her involvement in mentoring programs and volunteering on the Civil College Board at Engineers Australia.

Outside of engineering, Emily is captain of her local footy club where she helps grow the skills and nurture a diverse group of women.

Emma Lucia – Deputy Director Development (STEM), Monash University

Emma is a passionate climate advocate working at the nexus between technology and people. She leads the development of partnerships with academia enabling the creation of novel solutions to the challenges of the age. An Arts(Italian)/Mechanical Engineering graduate with a Master in Sustainability, Emma forged a career in sustainability focusing on the built environment and renewable energy. Trilingual with an entrepreneurial spirit, Emma is mission-driven and impact oriented.

Emma is keen to demonstrate that non-traditional career pathways result in well rounded leaders able to tackle the ambiguity of our changing world with confidence.

Claire Rosenberg

Hannah Crowther – Deputy Transport Manager, Kellogg Brown and Root

Chartered Engineer and Manager, former Army officer, and National Sporting Organisation committee member; experienced operations leader within engineering, construction, resources, management consultancy and learning and development sectors. Experienced in program, project and risk management to deliver and implement large scale capital projects. Excellent communication, organisational and analytical skills combined with a desire to build deep relationships and drive improvements; tested under exacting complex operational conditions which required adaptability and flexibility in all dimensions.

Strong natural leadership and key team player working with local, national and international teams. Thrives on using coaching and mentoring skills to develop others and manage performance.

Kate Porter – Chief Operating Officer, Crux Biolabs

Kate Porter is Chief Operating Officer at Crux Biolabs, an immunology contract research provider supporting medical research. Trained in virology and molecular biology, Kate has over 14 years’ experience drug discovery, as well as environmental biology expertise. With a PhD from the University of Melbourne, Kate moved into drug discovery in the Regulatory and Quality group at Amrad. She conducted drug target discovery research at Biota, studying pathogenic viruses and bacteria, before joining Noxopharm as a pre-clinical director for oncology drug discovery.

Kate brings passion for life sciences home through explorations into sourdough baking, cheese making and permaculture.

Kathryn Jowett – Senior Business Performance Manager, AusNet Services – Mondo

Currently working for AusNet Mondo, Kathryn is part of the Infrastructure team that builds new high-voltage electricity transmission connections for renewable generation sources and grid-scale energy storage. Part of the management team, she is responsible for improvement, governance, reporting and supporting the team in the development of growth strategies. Kathryn has had roles in medical research before moving into client facing roles in R&D Advisory at KPMG and independent consulting, within industries ranging from biotechnology to engineering to IT.

Kathryn is passionate about education and mentoring, and contributes as a career mentor with the Industry Mentoring Network in STEM Program.

Krystel Boland – Practice Lead, Senior Experience Designer, and Managing Consultant, Pragma Partners

Krystel Boland is a Human-Centered Designer with strong analytical, communication, and stakeholder management skills. Her design solutions to date have included digital platforms, services, physical spaces, virtual reality tools, strategic models, and learning frameworks. With 13 years of professional experience, Krystel is an experienced Design Leader and lifelong learner, committed to mentoring early-career designers and contributing to the broader design community.

She is incredibly passionate about hackathons, and has organised, facilitated, and participated in several over the last decade as one means of delivering on the promises of technology for a more sustainable future.

Liz Dallimore – CEO, Argenica Therapeutics Limited

Liz has over 20 years’ experience in medical research, innovation, and technology commercialisation, with a strong track record working with technology companies to commercialise novel products. Liz is currently the CEO of Argenica Therapeutics Ltd, a listed biotechnology developing novel neuroprotective therapeutics. She is also Co-Founder and Director of medical device startup Inspiring Holdings Pty Ltd. Prior to this, Liz was the National Director of KPMG Australia’s Research Engagement and Commercialisation Team.

Liz generously gives her time to advise not-for-profits and government on advancing the life sciences industry in WA. She holds a PhD in Neuroscience and an MBA.

Claire Rosenberg

Liz Williams – CEO, Hemideina Pty Ltd

Dr. Liz Williams is passionate about translating science into products that transform lives. Her entrepreneurship began during her PhD at Cambridge University, when she became President of the Technology and Enterprise Club. There she learnt about term sheets, fundraising, and the elevator pitch. After moving to Australia to pursue science commercialisation, Liz co-founded and became CEO of Hemideina, a medical device company, creating a paradigm shift in cochlear implant performance to positively impact the lives of people suffering from disabling hearing loss.

Her leadership potential was recognised with a BioMelbourne Network Emerging Women in Leadership award in 2017.

Dr. Marguerite Evans-Galea – IMNIS Executive Director, Australian Academy of Technology & Engineering

Dr Marguerite Evans-Galea AM is IMNIS Executive Director at the Australian Academy of Technology & Engineering, co-founder and co-chair of Women in STEMM Australia, and Australian Sickle Cell Advocacy chair. Evans-Galea led gene therapy research in the US and Australia, and her leadership has been internationally recognised. She is Australasia editor with Springer-Nature’s Gene Therapy. Evans-Galea represented Australia through APEC, served on SAGE’s Expert Advisory and Victoria’s Ministerial Council for Women, and now serves on the Policy Committee with Science & Technology Australia.

Dr Evans-Galea is a member of the Victorian Honour Roll of Women and the Order of Australia.

Megan Astle – Associate Director, MRFF & Major Initiatives, University of Melbourne

Megan is an experienced higher education and research professional with a background in biomedical research and a demonstrated history of developing and delivering major impact-focused research ventures at the interface of industry, research and education.

She is currently employed at the University of Melbourne in Research and Enterprise Development, supporting new major interdisciplinary research initiatives and Medical Research Future Fund applicants.

Pandora Patterson – General Manager, Research, Policy, & Patient Programs, CanTeen

Pandora is General Manager of Research, Policy & Patient Programs, and part of the executive team at Canteen a national not-for-profit for young people impacted by cancer. Pandora leads Canteen’s Research and Policy teams, having built a globally recognised program of research and translational work in youth cancer.

She also leads the national implementation of Canteen’s clinical trials initiative for young cancer patients and the hospital-based Youth Cancer Service which has transformed the response of Australia’s health care system to adolescent and young adult cancer patients with the provision of nationally coordinated, age-appropriate medical and psychosocial care.

Claire Rosenberg

Anita Govender – Engineering Manager, UGL Limited

Anita Govender is an influential technical and operational leader with significant experience across South Africa and Australia’s transport sector. Best known for leading multi-disciplinary technical teams to deliver flagship projects such as the iconic Moses Mabhida Railway Station in South Africa for the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup, to design delivery for Sydney Metro’s City and Southwest extension, changing the transport infrastructure in Sydney for generations to come.

Her career portfolio is a platform for Anita’s core value, Ubuntu, ‘I am because we are’, which she has used to improve diversity, equity and inclusion for lasting and sustainable change.

Patricia Vietheer – Director, R&D Strategy & Planning, Biointelect Pty Ltd

Dr-Patricia Vietheer has >18 years of experience in the Life Sciences industry. A specialist in infectious diseases, molecular biology and viral immunology, Patricia’s career began in the research laboratory working on the preclinical evaluation of vaccines collaborating with industry. She has since held a range of roles in business development, project/program management and consulting where she has helped translate scientific ideas into public health solutions.

She holds a Science degree from University of Queensland, PhD in Microbiology at Monash University, an MBA in Strategy & Planning at Deakin University and completed the Molecules to Medicine Internship on Commercialization.

Susan Lloyd – Design Coordinator, Kellogg, Brown and Root

Susan is Civil and Environmental Engineer, who leads level crossing removal design delivery. Commencing as a design engineer she has worked across various infrastructure sectors from securing environmental flows for the Coorong and Adelaide’s water supply to delivering innovative transport and health care solutions. Taking her 14-year design delivery experience, she now finds purpose in creating and managing diverse design teams, able to bring their authentic selves to deliver tangible change for the community.

Her vision is for her nonnegotiable, diversity to become standard practice. Susan holds a Bachelor of Civil and Environmental Engineering (Hons) from the University of Adelaide.

Tamsin Terry – Director, Commercialisation – Life Sciences, UniQuest Pty Ltd

Tamsin Terry is Director, Commercial Engagement – Life Sciences at UniQuest with a particular focus on oncology and infectious disease. Tamsin has an extensive background in Australian and UK research commercialisation and biotech encompassing small molecule drug and biologic development and medical devices with additional experience in vaccine development and gene expression-based diagnostic assays/biomarkers.

Prior to joining UniQuest in July 2018, Tamsin was R&D Director for the Wound Management Innovation CRC, responsible for directing research and development strategy across the CRC’s portfolio of innovative wound-focused research and had previous Research Director roles in small molecule and antibody therapeutics and expression-based diagnostics.

Claire Rosenberg

Tich-Lam Nguyen – Chief Operating Officer, ARC Centre of Excellence in Future Low-Energy Electronics Technologies

With a PhD in Chemistry and a Master of Management, Tich-Lam has 15 years of experience in the higher education sector as a research centre manager and a researcher in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology. As Chief Operating Officer of the FLEET Centre, she is responsible for the Centre’s financial and operational effectiveness. Her mantra is all about making a difference and what excites her is innovative collaborations and connecting expertise to create opportunities.

Tich-Lam also has the privilege to work with brilliant scientists and develop programs and initiatives through FLEET to develop future science leaders and contribute to building an equitable STEM future.

Vanessa Waddell – Head Commercial Operations and Business Development, PolyActiva Pty Ltd

Vanessa is an executive manager with 20 years’ experience in commercialization of pharmaceuticals, biological products, and medical devices. Vanessa is the Head of Commercial Operations and Business Development at PolyActiva, responsible for operational management, finance, HR, and business development. Vanessa has held senior management roles in private and publicly listed biotechnology companies across business competencies including general management, business development, IP management, project management (preclinical and clinical), and finance.

Prior to joining PolyActiva Vanessa held positions with Starpharma Pty. Ltd., PrimaBiomed Ltd., Velacor Therapeutics, & Pathway Therapeutics. Vanessa has a BSc. (Hons) University of Sydney and MBA (Brookes Scholar) Deakin University.