Occasional Address speakers - April Graduation 2017
A highlight of each graduation ceremony is the Occasional Address. In April, Western Sydney University graduands and their guests will have the opportunity to hear from a range of distinguished guest speakers.
Ceremony 1 - 9.30am, Friday 7 April
Executive Director Nursing and Midwifery and Clinical Governance, Western Sydney Local Health District
Joanne is accountable for optimising health outcomes provided by nurses and midwives in Western Sydney Local Health District (WSLHD).
Additionally, she is responsible for the WSLHD Clinical Governance Unit and WSLHD Research and Education Network.
In January 2017, Joanne commenced as an ex-officio member of the Western Sydney Local Health District Board. Joanne's qualifications include a Master of Nursing. This is complemented with extensive professional experience at an executive level including the roles as Director of Nursing and Midwifery at Westmead, Royal Prince Alfred and Liverpool Hospitals – all major tertiary referral facilities in NSW.
Clinically, Joanne spent her formative years in operating theatres.
She has particular interests in the continuous improvement of health care with a strong focus on supporting systems that promote patient safety and practice improvement.
Joanne is very proud to be called a nurse and aspires that care at WSLHD is of the highest quality and delivered with compassion.
Ceremony 2 - 12.00pm, Friday 7 April
Director of Nursing and Midwifery Services, Camden and Campbelltown Hospital
Karen has worked in public health for 38 years, including as a senior nurse for over 10 years within the South Western Sydney Local Health District (SWSLHD). She holds a number of qualifications including a Bachelor of Nursing from University of New England, and Master of Health Administration from the University of New South Wales.
Karen commenced her nursing management career as a Nursing Unit Manager, initially at Royal South Sydney, then at Westmead Hospital, and then becoming Operational Nurse Manager at Liverpool Hospital.
Karen has worked as a Director of Nursing and Midwifery in a variety of hospital settings, including Liverpool, Dubbo, Wagga, and Bowral, and is currently the Director of Nursing and Midwifery Services of Camden and Campbelltown Hospital.
Karen is committed to leading and contributing to person-centered care for our community as well as developing effective workplace cultures that support the recruitment and retention of committed staff and allow for the provision of holistic, safe, high-quality patient care.
Ceremony 3 - 2.30pm, Friday 7 April
Former Deputy Secretary, School Operations and Performance, NSW Department of Education
The University is pleased to be awarding Gregory Prior an Honorary Fellowship as part of this ceremony, in recognition of his outstanding contribution to education in New South Wales, and for service to the University.
Gregory has made lifelong contributions to the field of education, having provided unwavering support to Western Sydney University and championed the development of teachers from the Western Sydney region and Greater New South Wales.
Beginning as a teacher in 1978, he was appointed Principal at Tyalla Public School in 1994. His subsequent senior appointments with the Department of Education included Chief Education Officer; School Education Director; Director, School and Regional Operations; and Regional Director, Western Sydney.
In November 2010, he was appointed as Deputy Director-General, Schools and Communities, responsible for driving strategic direction and policy across Public Schools in NSW.
He led the implementation of significant initiatives including in curriculum and assessment, literacy and numeracy, Aboriginal education, quality teaching and organisational effectiveness. Gregory assisted in the development of the Research Orientated School Engaged Teacher-researcher Education (ROSETE) program, a unique collaboration between the Department of Education, Western Sydney University and the Ningbo Municipal Education Bureau in China.
Throughout his career, Gregory has emphasised the importance of strengthening teacher and leadership capability in order to meet the educational challenges of the future.
Ceremony 4 - 5.00pm, Friday 7 April
Western Sydney Director, Sydney Business Chamber
The University is pleased to be awarding David Borger an Honorary Fellowship as part of this ceremony, in recognition of his distinguished service to the University and to the Western Sydney region.
The Western Sydney Director of the Sydney Business Chamber since 2012, David is integral in promoting discussion that contributes to economic activity and growth in Western Sydney. Before public life he worked as an urban planner and adviser to the Minister for Planning. At age 30, he became the youngest ever Lord Mayor of Parramatta, serving three terms from 1999–2007.
In 2007, David was elected to represent the Granville electorate in the NSW Parliament. While in Government he served as Minister for Western Sydney and Minister for Roads, as well as Assistant Minister for Transport, and Minister for Housing, during his time in Government.
Following the 2011 election David, along with business partner Adam Byrnes, established Think Planners, a planning firm with a focus on Western Sydney. He currently serves as a non-executive director on the boards of the Sydney Festival, the Westmead Medical Research Foundation, and Evolve Housing.
In 2001 his service to the people of Western Sydney was recognised with a Centenary Medal "for service to the community through local government".
Ceremony 5 - 9.30am, Saturday 8 April
Academy Director, GWS Giants Football Club
John's career coaching elite athletes has spanned more than 30 years over a variety of sports.
Previous roles held by John include sprints and relay coach for the Australian track and field team at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games and head fitness coach and high performance manager for Essendon Football Club from 1998 until 2008.
In 2014 John was diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disease – Limbic Encephalitis. The initial prognosis was one of dire consequence. After months in hospital and professional care, John emerged from this condition with an even stronger determination for changing people's lives.
This determination saw John return to sport as the Academy Director of the GWS Giants. He also established two separate Exercise Physiology Clinics in Sydney and Melbourne.
An accredited Sports and Exercise Physiologist, John holds a Master of Science and Technology (OHS) from the University of New South Wales.
Ceremony 6 - 12.00pm, Saturday 8 April
Marcus Blackmore AM
The University is pleased to be awarding Marcus Blackmore AM an Honorary Doctor of Letters as part of this ceremony, in recognition of his distinguished service to business, charity and the broader community.
Marcus has had a long and distinguished career in business, industry and charitable organisations.
Chairman of Blackmores since February 2009, and a Director since 1973, he currently serves as a Director of the Young Endeavour Youth Scheme, an honorary trustee for the Committee for the Economic Development of Australia, and the Vice-Chair, Defence Reserves Support Council.
He founded the National Nutritional Association of Australia (now the Complementary Medicine Association) and, under his leadership, the domestic complementary medicines industry has grown dramatically in the last five years.
Marcus is involved with various charitable and business organisations, and has received many awards for his contribution to industry and the community.
In 1998, he was made a Member of the Order of Australia for services to business and the community. He was inducted into the Australian Traditional Medicine Society Hall of Fame in 2011; made an Honorary Fellow, Heart Research Institute in 2014; and inducted into the Australia New Zealand Regional Young Presidents' Organisation (YPO) Hall of Fame in 2015.
Ceremony 7 - 2.30pm, Saturday 8 April
Professor Mary O'Kane AC
NSW Chief Scientist and Engineer
The University is pleased to be awarding Professor Mary O'Kane AC an Honorary Doctor of Science as part of this ceremony, in recognition of her distinguished contribution to the fields of science and technology in Australia.
Appointed by the NSW Premier as the inaugural NSW Chief Scientist and Engineer in 2008, Professor O'Kane is also a company director and the Executive Chair of O'Kane Associates.
She is also Chair of the boards of the Cooperative Research Centre for Spatial Information, the Space Environment Management Cooperative Research Centre, and the Institute of Marine and Antarctic Studies at the University of Tasmania.
From 1996–2001, Professor O'Kane was Vice-Chancellor and Rector of the University of Adelaide, the first woman to be elevated to the position in that University's 125-year history.
She was also appointed as the inaugural chair of the Group of Eight universities.
As NSW Chief Scientist and Engineer, Professor O'Kane has produced a large number of high-profile reports containing government-commissioned advice on various policy issues, including the Review of Coal Seam Gas Activities in NSW in 2014.
In 2016 she was appointed a Companion of the Order of Australia.
Ceremony 8 - 5.00pm, Saturday 8 April
Professor James Arvanitakis
Dean, Graduate Studies, Western Sydney University
Professor James Arvanitakis is the Dean of the Graduate Research School at Western Sydney University, where he also lectures in Humanities and is a member of the Institute for Culture and Society.
His areas of research include citizenship, resilience, piracy and the future of universities. Professor Arvanitakis is also a regular media commentator appearing on ABC TV and local radio.
He was also the founding Head of The Academy at Western Sydney University spearheading its principles of future-proofing education, and inter-disciplinary and ethical leadership.
Professor Arvanitakis was a former banker and advocate for free trade but having witnessed child and indentured labour, he has helped to develop sustainable, socially just and equitable economic policies as a human rights activist throughout the Pacific, Indonesia and Europe.
In 2012 Professor Arvanitakis was awarded the Prime Minister's University Teacher of the Year Award and received an Australian Research Council Discovery Grant in the same year.
In 2015 Professor Arvanitakis was named an Eminent Researcher by the Australian Indian Education Council.
Ceremony 9 - 9.30am, Monday 10 April
Professor Timothy Rowse
Adjunct Professor, Western Sydney University
The University is pleased to be awarding Professor Timothy Rowse the title of Emeritus Professor as part of this ceremony, for his distinguished contribution to the teaching and research of Australian history and Australian studies, and for his service to the University.
Professor Rowse is a major figure in the field of Australian history, particularly Indigenous and postcolonial history.
Recognised as one of the most important writers on Indigenous affairs in Australia, in 2003 he was awarded a Centenary Medal for his contribution to Australian and Indigenous studies. He is a Member of the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies, a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Humanities, and a Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia.
His first book, Australian Liberalism and National Character (1978), discussed Australian traditional non-fiction writing. His interests then shifted to focus on the twentieth-century history of central Australia and the colonial inclusion of Aboriginal people.
From 2003-2004 he served as the Professor of Australian Studies at Harvard University.
In 2009 he accepted a professorial appointment in the Centre for Citizenship and Public Policy at Western Sydney University, and co-founded the Centre's PhD program.
He has also been an active member of the University's Institute for Culture and Society.
Ceremony 10 - 12.00pm, Monday 10 April
Professor Jane Goodall
Adjunct Professor, Western Sydney University
The University is pleased to be awarding Professor Jane Goodall the title of Emeritus Professor as part of this ceremony, for her distinguished contribution to teaching and research in performance studies, contemporary arts and creative writing, and for her service to the University.
Professor Goodall is a major Australian scholar and author with an outstanding international reputation.
Now a freelance writer and critic, her research has centred on performance studies, contemporary arts, English, and creative writing.
Professor Goodall has written extensively on arts in the modern era, focusing on the relationship between the arts and sciences.
She was the joint winner of the Calibre essay prize, awarded by the Australian Book Review and the Copyright Council, for her essay Footprints.
In 1995 she was appointed Associate Professor in the School of Humanities at Western Sydney University (Hawkesbury), serving two periods as Head of School. She was then Research Director in the College of Arts, Education, and Social Sciences, and then Research Coordinator for the School of Contemporary Arts.
In 2005 she was seconded to research within the Writing and Society Research Centre. She continues to serve as an Adjunct Professor with the Centre, having left the University in 2009.
Ceremony 11 - 2.30pm, Monday 10 April
Professor Robert Lee
Adjunct Professor, Western Sydney University
The University is pleased to be awarding Professor Robert Lee the title of Emeritus Professor as part of this ceremony, for his distinguished contribution to Australian transport history and for his service to the University.
Professor Lee is one of the pre-eminent international authorities in the field of transport history, with special expertise in railway history.
First appointed in February 1979 as a lecturer in Australian and Asian history, he has served Western Sydney University for 35 years.
He was promoted to Professor in December 2011 and retired from the University in December 2014. During his tenure, he made many significant contributions to University governance and to the field of transport history.
He has written many books on transport, including The Railways of Victoria 1854-2004, shortlisted for the NSW Premier's History Award in 2007.
Between 1999 and 2007 he was invited to undertake three missions for UNESCO's International Council on Monuments and Sites in India, to assess successful applications for three mountain railways to be listed as World Heritage sites.
The Institution of Engineers Australia awarded him the Engineering Excellence Award in Heritage and Engineering for his book, The Greatest Public Work: The New South Wales Railways, 1848-1889.
Ceremony 12 - 5.00pm, Monday 10 April
The Honourable Brian Thomas Sully AM QC
Adjunct Professor, Western Sydney University
The University is pleased to be awarding The Honourable Brian Sully AM QC an Honorary Fellowship as part of this ceremony, in recognition of his distinguished service to the University.
His Honour is a former Justice of the Supreme Court of New South Wales, a position he held for 18 years, from 1989 to 2007.
He studied law at the University of Sydney, graduating in 1959. He was admitted to the Bar in 1962, and appointed Queen's Counsel in 1979.
While serving as a Justice of the Supreme Court of New South Wales, His Honour was the Deputy Presiding Member of the Legal Profession Admission Board from 1994–2007; and the Chairman, Legal Qualifications Committee from 1997–2000.
Since his retirement from the Supreme Court, His Honour has served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Western Sydney University. In this role, His Honour lectures undergraduate law students in advocacy, and coaches students in mooting for the internal Witness Examination Competition.
In 2015, His Honour was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia for his significant service to the judiciary, and to the law, particularly through legal education in New South Wales.
Ceremony 13 - 9.30am, Tuesday 11 April
Senior Technical Program Manager, Tesla
In 2012, as an undergraduate student at Western Sydney University studying Engineering (Robotics and Mechatronics), Jay Manley led the University's inaugural solar car team in the prestigious World Solar Car Challenge.
Starting with just $500 and the support of two fellow students, Jay grew the team to more than 20 students with a budget of $300,000 by the time race day came around.
That same determination to succeed has taken Jay from Western Sydney to Silicon Valley, where he now works as Senior Technical Program Manager for Tesla.
Before joining Tesla, Jay worked as a Project Support Officer in the School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics at Western Sydney University.
Jay's story featured in the University's 'Unlimited' advertising campaign,(opens in a new window) which showcased the remarkable stories of Western Sydney University graduates.
Ceremony 14 - 12.00pm, Tuesday 11 April
Richard Kell AM
Former Chairman, Cardno Group
A chartered civil engineer, Richard graduated with a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) from the University of Sydney in 1959. He has spent his working life as a consulting engineer in infrastructure engineering.
Formerly Chairman of major Australian based international consultancy, Cardno Group, an ASX listed company with over 8,000 staff, Richard continues to work with Cardno consulting on bridge, highway, marine, water and building projects in Australia and internationally.
Richard was made a Member of the Order of Australia in 1998, for services to bridge and international engineering and was awarded a Centenary Medal in 2002.
Richard is an Honorary Fellow of Engineers Australia (EA), and received the EA John Connell Medal for structural engineering in 2000. In 2016 he received EA's premier award, the Peter Nicol Russell Medal.
Ceremony 15 - 2.30pm, Tuesday 11 April
Jim Marsden OAM
Senior Partner, Marsdens Law Group
The University is pleased to be awarding Jim Marsden OAM an Honorary Fellowship as part of this ceremony, in recognition of his distinguished service to the Western Sydney region.
Jim has practised in property and commercial law, with an emphasis on property development, for over 30 years, serving as Senior Partner at Marsdens Law Group for the past 14 years.
A member of the Urban Development Institute of Australia since 1992, Jim has been a generous supporter of the School of Law at Western Sydney University.
The support of Marsdens was influential in developing the Moot Court when the School of Law was established at Campbelltown in 1995. The Moot Court has proven invaluable in training Western Sydney University law students.
Jim is Foundation Chairman of the Macarthur Club, Chair of the Macarthur Economic Development Plan Review Advisory Group, Member of the Risk Management Committee of Lifeline Macarthur, and a Board Member of the Ingham Institute. He is also a current Member of the AFL Community Advisory Group.
In 2011 he received a Community Service Award from Campbelltown City Council.
In 2013 he was awarded an OAM for service to the community of Campbelltown.
Ceremony 16 - 5.00pm, Tuesday 11 April
Professor Louise Young
Western Sydney University
The University is pleased to be awarding Professor Louise Young the title of Emeritus Professor as part of this ceremony, for her distinguished contribution to research in the field of business marketing, and for her service to the University.
Professor Young is an eminent scholar in the fields of marketing and data collection research methods at Western Sydney University.
As Professor of Marketing in the School of Business since 2008, and Director of Research from 2013 to 2015, she has made a substantial contribution to the University through her research.
Professor Young is a Fellow of the Royal Society of NSW, and a Fellow of the Australia and New Zealand Marketing Academy (ANZMAC), awarded Distinguished Researcher of the Year by ANZMAC in 2015.
She has published numerous highly-cited works on business-to-business marketing relationships and research methods investigating evolving social and business systems. Her research has been funded by business, government and the Australia Research Council.
Professor Young pioneered the use of text analysis software, enabling meaningful analysis of business discourse, considerably influencing research direction in the business-to-business academy.
She has worked to invigorate the research culture of the School and to link it to the strategic priorities of the University.
Ceremony 17 - 9.30am, Wednesday 12 April
Professor Bronwyn Davies
Independent scholar and Professorial Fellow, University of Melbourne
The University is pleased to be awarding Professor Bronwyn Davies the title of Emeritus Professor as part of this ceremony for her distinguished contribution to social sciences including the sociology of education, and for her service to the University.
Professor Davies is a pre-eminent international scholar in the field of critical psychology, social sciences, and the psychology of education.
Her substantial contributions have been extensively recognised through multiple honours, awards and citations, and keynote invitations. She has long been a world authority on feminist poststructural research, influencing the fields of pedagogy, sexualities, gender and social action.
]Professor Davies has a total of over 9,000 citations listed in Google Scholar for her 10 most cited publications, evidence of her impact as a world-leading academic.
Professor Davies has an impressive list of publications at both the national and international level, including 17 books and 130 book chapters, scholarly papers, as well as non-fiction and children's books.
Her status as a world-leading academic authority is reflected in her appointments as a visiting professor at more than 12 universities spanning six nations.
Professor Davies was appointed Professor of Education at Western Sydney University in May 2003. She served as the Director of the Narrative, Discourse and Pedagogy Research Group until her retirement in 2009.
Ceremony 18 - 12.00pm, Wednesday 12 April
Director, Resilient Communities, Uniting
The University is pleased to be awarding Doug Taylor a Community Fellowship for his services to charity, and for his contribution to the social development of the Western Sydney community.
Doug has had a highly successful professional career in the social services sector and has been an active volunteer for over 20 years.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from Western Sydney University, and was formerly the Director Strategic Engagement at Uniting, and Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director at United Way Australia.
During his time as the CEO and Executive Director of United Way, Doug was integral to a number of significant projects aimed at improving the lives of the disadvantaged in Sydney, including the 90 Homes for 90 Lives Campaign, The Imagination Library and The Hive.
Doug has served on the Boards of the School for Social Entrepreneurs, the Australian Centre for Social Innovation, the Centre for Social Impact Advisory Board, and as a proud Trustee of the Steve Lawrence Social Innovation Fund.
Doug is also a lay preacher in his local Uniting Church.
Ceremony 19 - 2.30pm, Wednesday 12 April
Commissioner Peter Hastings QC
NSW Crime Commission
Peter Hastings QC is the Commissioner of the NSW Crime Commission, a position he has occupied for four years.
The NSW Crime Commission is responsible for disrupting serious and organised crime within NSW.
Mr Hastings previously practised as a barrister for 35 years and specialised in criminal law, acting in numerous major trials and appeals in Australia.
He was involved in a number of Royal Commissions and Inquiries, including the Wood Royal Commission, Operation Florida conducted by the Police Integrity Commission, and the Kennedy Royal Commission into police corruption in Western Australia.
He is the immediate past President of the Australian Academy of Forensic Sciences, an organisation which aims to bring together esteemed individuals from the broad areas of the law, medicine and science industries which are interested in the forensic application of their disciplines.
He is also Chairman of the NSW/ACT AFL Appeal Board.
Ceremony 20 - 5.00pm, Wednesday 12 April
Paul is a Partner for PwC based in Sydney. He leads a team that works closely with companies to help them deal with the complexities of accounting for transactions.
A married father of three, Paul grew up in Western Sydney's Hills District.
Paul joined PwC in Parramatta in 1994. Straight from school, Paul worked full-time and studied part-time for his Bachelor of Business at University of Technology Sydney. He became a Chartered Accountant in 1999.
Paul has worked for PwC in their Parramatta, Sydney, and Melbourne offices and throughout Asia and the UK in his various roles with PwC.
Paul is a member of a global network of accounting specialists within PwC that works towards the interpretation and consistent application of International Accounting Standards.
Paul is a member of the Australian Accounting Standards Board's Public Advisory Panel on Business Combinations and was recently asked to join the advisory panel for the upcoming World Congress of Accountants to be held in Sydney in 2018.
Paul was also a Director on the Board of Oakhill College in Castle Hill for four years.
Ceremony 21 - 9.30am, Thursday 13 April
Professor Nguyen Dong Phong
President, University of Economics Ho Chi Minh City
The University is pleased to be awarding Professor Nguyen Dong Phong an Honorary Doctor of Letters as part of this ceremony, in recognition of his distinguished service to the University.
He has served at the University of Economics Ho Chi Minh City (UEH) for over 30 years. Beginning as a lecturer, he rose to the positions of Deputy Dean, Dean, Vice President, and finally President of UEH in 2011.
Under his leadership, UEH has garnered worldwide recognition for its targeted internationalisation strategies in academic and applied research, and strategic partnerships.
Professor Nguyen Dong Phong has a PhD in economics from UEH. In 2009, he was awarded the Minister of Education and Training's Medal for Life and received the Vietnamese President's Honour as the Teacher of Excellence for Life in 2011.
He received the Minister of Education and Training's Award for outstanding contribution to scientific and technological research in 2006–2010, and UEH's Award for Research Excellence for 10 consecutive years.
He has been awarded more than 20 different research grants from multiple Vietnamese government institutions. He has also published numerous peer-reviewed journal articles, conference papers and books both locally and internationally, in Vietnamese and English.
Under his leadership, UEH has become a key partner institution of Western Sydney University.
WHAT: April Graduation 2017
WHEN: Saturday 7 April to Thursday 13th April 2017
WHERE: Ian and Nancy Turbott Auditorium (Building EE), Parramatta South campus, corner Victoria Road and James Ruse Drive
6 April 2017
21 graduation ceremonies over six days
4,500 graduating students
34 PhDs awarded to higher degree research students
21 University Medals Awarded to high-achieving students
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