Keynote Speakers



Conference Keynotes brought to you by our Gold, Silver, and Bronze sponsors:

Opening Keynote: Tanya Ha

Tanya Ha is an award-winning Australian environmental campaigner, author, broadcaster, science journalist and sustainability researcher.

She is an Associate at the communication agency Science in Public and the Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute at the University of Melbourne. She was an ambassador for National Science Week in 2009 and now, through Science in Public, is the national publicity manager for Science Week. At the University of Melbourne, she is part of the teaching group for the subject Human Behaviour and Environment.

Tanya has worked in the media, advocacy, corporate communication and stakeholder engagement. Tanya was a science reporter for the ABC’s flagship science show Catalyst, and was the host and main reporter for the WIN Tasmania show Warm TV, for which she won the UNAA Media Award for Environmental Reporting. Tanya has also had roles in public policy and stakeholder relations, including over six years on the board of the state government agency Sustainability Victoria.

Tanya now consults on science and environmental engagement and communication for several organisations, companies and research institutions. She is also a regular contributor to ABC Environment and has just commenced as a sustainable cities and business contributor for The Guardian.

Closing Keynote: Kurt Fearnley

Kurt is one of Australia’s most well known & respected athletes, and three-time Australian Paralympic gold medalist.

Winner of some of the worlds most prestigious marathons, in London, Paris, Rome, Los Angeles, Chicago & New York. The latter two, 4 & 5 times. He won the Paralympic men’s wheelchair marathon in Athens in 2004 and retained his title in Beijing in 2008. In Athens he also won gold over the 5000m on the track.

In London in 2012 he picked up a bronze medal in the marathon and a silver on the track over 5000m. In total Kurt has eleven Paralympic medals spanning across 4 games. He’s also a 6 times world champion from 800m to the marathon. His marathon personal best is 1hour 18minutes & 51seconds set in Boston in 2011.

Off the racing circuit Kurt has been a winning crew member of the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, taking line honours in 2011 on board the yacht Loyal. However he is most well known for his amazing feat of crawling the 96km Kokoda track.

Conference MC: Nigel Collins

Nigel created his first business at the age of twenty and sold it at twenty-one. He then went on to build Absurd Entertainment, one of Australia largest entertainment design companies. He worked extensively on the 2000 Olympic and Paralympic Games, and holds the accolade of being show director for Australia’s largest ever corporate event in 2005. Having passed the baton on by selling the Absurd in 2004, he moved into the world of consulting, advising his clients and speaking on driving consistent business growth step by step.

​In 2013, armed with a video camera, Nigel set off on an initiative to travel throughout Australia, solo on his motorbike, to discover ingenious Australians and share their stories. Through ‘Ingenious Oz Project’, his quest was to inspire the ideas of a Nation. In 2014, as an ambassador of Start-up Australia, he interviewed over 50 of Australia’s top entrepreneurs and business leaders. These initiatives and the unique research they offered led Nigel to establish ‘Game of Inches’. An organisation committed to helping businesses grow through a tested and pragmatic process of small changes leading to big results.