Bec Scott OAM - Co-founder & CEO of STREAT
Bec Scott is the Co-founder and CEO of STREAT, a Melbourne-based social enterprise that works with marginalised young people aged 16-24 years and provides them with a healthy self, job and home. STREAT run a portfolio of 11 foodservice businesses, including cafes, an artisan bakery, a catering company, and a coffee roastery. To date, STREAT has worked with over 2,200 young people who have helped serve over 3 million customers. Prior to starting STREAT, Bec spent a decade at the CSIRO working in science communication. Bec is also passionate about the arts and has spent 20 years collaborating with artists, photographers, illustrators, writers, makers and designers. On a weekend you'll usually find her doing an arts side project, pottering around in STREAT's garden with her partner Kate, or playing Lego with their son Will.
Kath Blackham - Founder & CEO, VERSA
With a passion for digital and a mind for innovation, Kath Blackham has been at the forefront of tech solutions for over 18 years. Her experience spans market research at TNS and RedSheriff, Product Management at SEEK and REA before starting her own full service digital agency in 2010 called Deepend Melbourne Pty Ltd, which grew to be one of Australia’s largest independent digital experience and design agencies. Kath has championed local initiatives (Code Like a Girl), and has been an Australian voice for digital around the globe (SoDA).
In 2017, Kath helped spearhead the creation of Australia’s first enterprise-level voice experience (VX) agency VERSA. Most recently, Kath led the merging of Deepend Melbourne and VERSA to create a VX and Digital Design powerhouse.
With a growing client portfolio, including Village Cinemas, beyondblue, Dairy Australia, Nova, Domino’s, Red Cross and Scenic; VERSA is poised to set the pace for VX innovation and large-scale digital design in Australia and internationally.
Kath is exceptionally committed to gender equality, flexibility and the future of work, and is a pioneer in the space with VERSA being the first Australian agency to operate a four-day working week model, to great success. She is dedicated to VERSA’s culture, which is unrivalled - it’s about passion, independence and expertise. VERSA works with its exceptional client partners to deliver connected experiences spanning multiple technologies, platforms, and media-creating positive business impact - a true driving force in the market. VERSA is committed to helping people experience a better life.
Lucy Thomas OAM - Co-founder and CEO, PROJECT ROCKIT
Growing up, Lucy Thomas always figured that “someone should really do something about bullying.” Then she realised: I am that someone. Now, more than a decade after launching PROJECT ROCKIT, Lucy has dedicated her whole life to the cause. As a keynote speaker and facilitator, Lucy has personally worked with hundreds of thousands of young people all over the world, from Wangaratta to Texas, Wollongong to Auckland, Atherton to Perth. Her work has been honoured by UNICEF, The University of Melbourne, The Foundation of Young Australians, the global Family Online Safety Institute and Lucy is recipient of an Order of Australia Medal for her service to youth and the issue of bullying.
But after building her career tackling bullying, Lucy’s life was fundamentally changed when she became the target of an extended pattern of bullying herself. Instead of hiding away, Lucy took this as an opportunity to connect with even young Aussies and launch herself into advocating for her LGBTIQA+ community. She made global headlines in 2016 when she stood up to a homophobic Uber driver and it went viral. Lucy has since wrapped these personal learnings into her widely received TEDx talk, Kindness: The ultimate rebellion against bullying.
With a blended academic background in Psychology and Creative Arts, Lucy is a mighty force of kindness, equipped with the precious ability to creatively engage young people to generate positive social change.
Mary Crooks AO - Executive Director, Victorian Women's Trust
After an extensive public policy career, Mary became the Executive Director of the Victorian Women’s Trust in 1996. She has designed and led ground-breaking community engagement initiatives, such as the Purple Sage Project and Our Watermark Australia. In June 2012, Mary was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia, for her distinguished services to public policy and advocacy for the advancement of women. In 2016, Mary won the Public Policy category as part of the AFR/Westpac’s 100 Women of Influence for her years of work in shaping public policy in Australia
Michelle Battersby - CMO, Keep it Cleaner
With five years corporate experience working for some of the largest financial companies in the world, at age 25 Michelle was approached by the CEO and Founder of Bumble with an offer that was too good to refuse: lead Bumble’s expansion into Australia. With that, Michelle launched Bumble into the Australian Market where it amassed over 3 million users prior to her taking on her next challenge. Inspired by women seeking to positively impact the lives of those around them there was no more logical step than Keep it Cleaner where Michelle is now the CMO and is passionate about what KIC stands for; empowering women to embrace health and wellness in a sustainable way.
Shamini Rajarethnam - Rationale, CEO
Shamini Rajarethnam is the CEO of Australian luxury skincare company RATIONALE, a position she has held since 2017.
Under her leadership, RATIONALE has achieved significant commercial growth and success, expanding from a medical agency only channel to fifteen Flagship Clinics in Australia. She has grown the RATIONALE cohort significantly, building strong teams in each department to support the company’s growth, and has worked closely with Founder Richard Parker to deliver luxury products and experiences to clients world-wide.
Having established her career working in Marketing and Digital departments for media start-ups and fashion brands in Singapore and Australia, Shamini joined RATIONALE in 2011 and was rapidly exposed to many facets of the business, from talent development, to branding, to strategic operations, before being promoted to General Manager in 2015.
She holds a Bachelor Degree in Arts (Linguistics) and a Masters of Commerce.
Shamini lives in Melbourne with her husband Athan and young daughter Asha.