Meet our 2020 speakers
The Hon Julie Bishop
Julie Bishop has served as the Member for Curtin, Western Australia in the House of Representatives since 1998. In 2013 she became Australia’s first ever female Minister for Foreign Affairs. Julie also served as Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party from 2007 to 2018.
As Minister for Foreign Affairs Julie spearheaded the single largest expansion of Australia’s overseas diplomatic presence in 40 years, introduced the New Columbo Plan to support Australian undergraduate students to study and undertake internships in the Indo-Pacific region and established the innovationXchange within the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to develop bold and creative solutions to longstanding development challenges.
Julie also promoted Australia’s interests at the United Nations Security Council, playing a leading role in the international response to the downing of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 over Ukraine, for which she was awarded the Commander of the Order of Merit of the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Julie previously served as Minister for Education, Science and Training and as the Minister assisting the Prime Minister for Women’s Issues.
Shane Delia is best known as Chef and Owner of restaurants Maha, Maha East, Maha Bar and Biggie Smalls. Shane is a television presenter, host of his own TV shows Spice Journey and Recipe For Life, author of Maha Middle Eastern Home Cooking and Spice Journey: Adventures in Middle Eastern Cooking and a charity & brand ambassador.
Shane’s larger than life personality and enthusiasm for food and Australian culture is captured in his acclaimed television program, Spice Journey. After a successful third season, Spice Journey has aired in 135 countries, across 5 continents and continues to be an Australian and international success.
In 2018, Shane was personally selected by Joseph Muscat, the Prime Minister of Malta, to become a member of the Council for Maltese Living Abroad. Shane is extremely passionate and proud of his Maltese heritage. As part of the Council, Shane protects and promotes the right and interest of Maltese living outside of Malta by providing advice to the Minister about foreign affairs.
Whether headlining corporate conferences, mesmerizing audiences in 20,000- seat stadiums, or leading volunteer excursions for youth and adults, Spencer’s words and actions have encouraged millions to stand up, face challenges and embrace change. Everyone leaves with pertinent lessons they can apply to redefine what their possible is.
Spencer’s incredible story is documented in both film and print. His journey is featured in the documentary Redefine Possible: e Story of Spencer West, which debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival and in his book Standing Tall: My Journey.
Demi Lovato invited Spencer to open her show on her world tour across North America, where he spoke to and inspired thousands of her fans. He has appeared countless times in the media (ABC News, 60 Minutes, CTV, BBC, TMZ and CNN).
As a featured speaker and co-host of WE Day he has graced over 60 WE Day stages across Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. He has spoken alongside luminaries and performers such as Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Prince Harry, former U.S. Vice-President Al Gore, Mia Farrow, Martin Luther King III, Jennifer Hudson and Natalie Portman, to name a few.
Before founding the highly acclaimed social enterprise Code Like a Girl, Ally Watson spent the first 8 years of her career as a software engineer. Despite her love for the field, she often experienced first-hand the isolation and barriers associated with being a woman in a male-dominated industry.
Code Like a Girl was born out of Ally’s desire to meet like-minded women who code. She hosted a casual meetup and was overwhelmed by the response. She quickly saw the opportunity to positively impact the lives of many women who code. Ally never approached it with the intention of finding “the next big thing”. She only knew that there was a need and she could fill it.
What started as a supportive networking meet-up quickly grew into an education startup that is having a measurable impact on tech’s gender imbalance. The rapid growth of the organisation is greatly attributed to Ally’s authentic vision and contagious passion for the challenge that lies ahead of our industry.
In her own right, Ally has become a valued voice and thought-leader for diversity in tech. When she’s not supporting her team at a code camp or networking event, Ally is workshopping a new deliverable with her exec team or jetting around the globe to compel others to share her vision for equal representation in Technology. Her schedule is absolutely chockers. But because Ally truly believes you can’t be what you can’t see, she still finds time to speak at her local primary school about the jobs of tomorrow and to demonstrate to the next generation that the face of success is a diverse one.
A renowned sneaker freak and hip hop junkie, YO! MAFIA has been killing them on the wheels of steel for a whopping 20 years. Having grown up at the fruition of Hip Hop in the late ‘70s/early ‘80s, YO! MAFIA became FLUORO BREAKER after falling in love with Boogaloo Shrimp in Breakin’.
After winning every B-Girl competition she entered, YO! MAFIA hung up her knee spin for the turntables after amassing a huge collection of original pressing 12-inch wax from every musical genre known to man. Relying on her acute party savvy ears, YO! MAFIA quickly began mashing up sounds from her beloved Hip Hop, mixing in RNB, electro, Commercial Bangers, Cock Rock and everything in between.
She has solidified her place as one of Australia’s premier Party/Open Format DJs, possessing an incredible ability to blend and mix a variety of genres into one big party set! Her signature genre-smashing sets have seen her named Official Hit FM/ Fox FM’s RNB Fridays Live Tour DJ while also supporting a wide range of A-List artists.
Global Engagement Manager
Australian Investment and Trade Commission (Austrade)
Benson Saulo (32) brings insight, passion and experience that he has develop throughout his working life from across corporate, not-for-profit and government sectors. In 2011, Benson was appointed the Australian Youth Representative to the United Nations in which he undertook a national engagement tour to gain a deeper understanding of issues impacting Australian youth. Benson then represented Australian youth at the 66th Session of the United Nations General Assembly as an accredited member of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
Benson became the founding director of the National Indigenous Youth Leadership Academy (NIYLA), which engages young Indigenous Australians to develop and drive youth-led social action campaigns. NIYLA participants developed and launch ten social action campaigns focusing on suicide prevention, climate change, mental health and welcoming refugee and asylum seekers. Benson was selected to participate in the U.S. State Department’s International Leaders Program that enabled him to engage First Nation’s groups to explore leadership, economic development and cultural opportunities.
Benson was formally the Head of Partnerships - Investments at Australian Unity within their Wealth and Capital Markets business, which explore investing into Indigenous businesses to scale their impact through employment, financial empowerment and governance.
Benson’s work has been recognised as a finalist for Young Australian of the Year (VIC), Human Rights Medal and 2012 NAIDOC Youth of the Year, and becoming a Sustainability Ambassador for City of Melbourne’s Knowledge Week. Benson is also a non-executive director of Innovation Unit ANZ and supports Impact Investing Australia’s Impact Ready Growth Grants and Sidney Myer Family Trust Poverty and Disadvantage Grants.
Mandy Dante is the CEO & Founder of Flourish Girl. Mandy is an ex-speech pathologist and an Australian Accredited Facilitator. Mandy is the first-senior female facilitator at The Rites of Passage Institute and is paving the way for their school programs for teenage girls across Queensland, Victoria and South Australia. She has also worked with alongside leading youth experts such as Hunter Johnson and Arne Rubinstein and within youth-led organisations such as The Man Cave, Game Changers Australia and Little Dreamers Australia. To date, Mandy has worked with over 3700 young people across Australia.
Mandy's passion originated from being a speech pathologist, where she empowered children with a range of communication disorders to find their voice. Towards the end of 2016, Mandy found that the rate of depression, anxiety and eating disorders amongst teenage girls were on a rise and it was in that moment that she found herself shifting her passion and focus towards giving teenage girls a voice.
Dr Ranjit Rao
Dr Ranjit Rao is a Surgeon with a difference. He blends western and eastern; modern and ancient; physical and spiritual in a way that is easy to understand and apply to daily life.
Graduating from Monash University as a Doctor in 1994, he then undertook residency training in General Surgery and Urological Surgery. He currently works as a Urologist at the Epworth Hospital Richmond and specialises in keyhole and robotic surgery.
Though he works as a surgeon, he remains open-minded to a holistic approach, and encourages patients to take control of their lives with proper diet, exercise, yoga, meditation, as well as establishing a sensible and practical way of living. He was first exposed to meditation as a medical student and found it a useful companion during his studies and training.
His deep personal experience as a meditator, culminated in him writing a book, “Meditation & Martini” where he outlines how it is possible to integrate both the material and spiritual lives seamlessly. “Meditation represents the spiritual and martini represents the material” he says, “and the key to a happy life is finding the right balance between the two”.
The theme of his writing is to encourage people to make conscious choices and live a life of balance, rather than being swept away by the collective sway of society.
Lead Facilitator - Achieve Fest
Prior to establishing The Eventful Learning Co, Summer worked across Australia, the USA and Asia with school leaders, teachers and policy makers including work as a teacher and leader in NSW & USA Schools, lecturer at Sydney University and internal innovation consultant at AITSL. Summer has led projects at a national scale working alongside education systems including Northern Territory education, ACT Education Directorate and government agencies including Victoria Police and Zoos Victoria, as well as a range of non-profit organisations.
With expertise in facilitation, learning design, strategic consulting, policy and school teaching & leadership, Summer works with a collective of associates and leverages a broad network of clever connections to enhance the skills, capability and impact of teams.
DAY ONE - Wednesday 24 June 2020
9:00 Welcome to Achieve Fest!
This session will explore the who, what, where, when, why and how of Achieve Fest. Participants will be introduced to facilitators, get excited by what they will experience over the next three days, familiarise themselves with all the techy platform-y stuff and be inspired by a range of industry leaders that will share insights that helped them to achieve.
10:00 Who I Am
Who I Am is the first component of The Prince’s Trust Australia’s Achieve framework. Underpinned by leading local and global research, it serves as an acknowledgement of the significant interests, achievements and contributions young people are already making. Through a range of engaging facilitator-led activities, this session will spark ideas for participants to identify their interests and start to explore how to connect them to potential career pathways.
11:00 Futureproofing Yourself
In this session, we will uncover ten secret ‘futureproofing’ skills that will set you up for success - now and into the future. Also known as enterprise skills, participants will explore these skills, discover why they are so important, and assess how advanced their enterprise skills are! This session includes a skills self-assessment tool that sets up deeply personalized learning for day two and three of Achieve Fest.
11:45 Wrap Up
Check in, share insights, ask questions, wrap up day one and prepare for day two! The session will end at 12:00 p.m.
Day Two - Thursday 25 June 2020
9:00 Panel Discussion: What do you want to be when you grow up?
You’ve surely been asked this question many times at various stages in your life. You’ve probably asked the same question to others. But have you ever considered what you’re asking, why you’re asking it, and what impact it has? As we move into the fourth industrial revolution, where it is predicted that so many jobs in the next decade haven’t even been invented yet, is this question even relevant? Join our all-star panel of local and international leaders, including The Honourable Julie Bishop and Spencer West, sharing pro tips for success and insights to help you unlock potential careers.
10:00 Choose your own adventure (The Twenties)
In this session, participants will be introduced to the second component of Prince’s Trust Australia’s Achieve framework, The Twenties. The Twenties are a range of practical activities that take about twenty minutes to complete and are mapped against ten enterprise skills. Participants will choose one (or more) of The Twenties, complete the activity in real-time, and learn useful life hacks while developing their enterprise skills. This unique portfolio of skills can be referred to, built upon, and used to demonstrate learning.
11:00 Live Q&A and cooking demonstration with celebrity chef, Shane Delia
Building on key insights from earlier today, this is an exclusive opportunity to hear from celebrity chef, entrepreneur, TV presenter and high profile brands ambassador, Shane Delia. In this session, Shane will share how he discovered his passion, built a career, and finds balance between business, health and family. This session will conclude with a live demonstration of one of The Twenties – How to Cook a Meal.
11:45 Wrap up
Check in, share insights, ask questions, wrap up day one and prepare for Achieve Fest day three! The session will end at 12pm.
DAY THREE - Friday 26 June 2020
9:00 Real-world application (TAKE Action)
In this session, participants will be introduced to the third components of Prince’s Trust Australia’s Achieve framework, TAKE Action. Here, we will explore how to activate enterprise skills and knowledge gained through day one and two of Achieve Fest and will focus on the importance of building leadership through follow-ship. Participants will build networks and learn how to contribute to social action alongside organisations who are already doing great stuff and leading change.
10:00 Choice and change – building skills while doing good
In this session, participants will have the opportunity choose from a bunch of sessions designed and delivered by our friends at High Resolves, Zoos Victoria, PROJECT ROCKIT and more! These sessions will enable participants to learn from industry leaders, showcase a range of issues, and show you how to make change through existing social action campaigns and initiatives.
11:00 Celebrating success
This session is dedicated to check ins, shout outs, sharing insights and asking questions. It’s a chance for us all to celebrate our collective successes from the past three days and look at what’s next...
12:00 Achieve Fest concludes