Technology is transforming industries all around the world – and none more so than the media and marketing sector. The COVID-19 pandemic has seen digital transformation go from a nice-to-have to must almost overnight. To add to this, it has also led to the biggest shift in consumption habits of a lifetime and has seen many media businesses forced to change their entire business model.
Driving this technological change are talented and creative individuals that understand how technology can be used to help the industry progress. Unfortunately, technology remains a heavily male-dominated industry. According to the European Commission’s Women in Digital Scoreboard from 2019, only 17 per cent of ICT specialists are women, while women in ICT earn 19 per cent less than men on average.
To help create the change that is needed to address these inequalities, we’re bringing back our Women Leading Tech Awards again in 2021. By recognising all of the brilliant female tech talent in our industry, we hope that these women will no longer be excluded from the conversation.
We again thank all our sponsors for supporting this incredibly important initiative and look forward to seeing you all for the awards on the 20 April 2021!
Open to companies who have supported the cause of getting more women into tech.
They could be rocket scientists if they so desired, yet instead they are explaining our world in ones and zeroes.
This category is open to any tertiary education provider which offers STEM based degrees/courses, and has demonstrated a holistic and long-term commitment to the recruitment and retention of female students.
This category is open to women who are currently in roles such as lecturing, researching or teaching within a technology discipline at either high school, tertiary or post graduate levels.
This category is for the coders and builders. Not only are they curious and passionate, they have some serious technical skills to boot.
The women who provide guiding hands and encouraging words to help others be a part of an incredibly diverse and inclusive tech future.
If a product sits on a shelf (or the other side of a payment gateway), does it really exist?
5pm AEDT, 1 March, 2021 - $99 + GST per entry
5pm AEDT, 8 March 2021 - $149 + GST per entry
12-3pm, 20 April, 2021 - Doltone House - Jones Bay Wharf, Sydney
As well as an awards presentation over lunch, attendees will also hear from these inspirational speakers.
Rae Johnston is a multi-award-winning STEM journalist, Wiradjuri woman, mother, broadcaster, voice actor and MC. Rae is the first ever Science and Technology Editor for NITV, host of That Startup Show and voices “Janali Banks” in the upcoming children’s animated series for ABC & Nine, Space Nova.
Rae is a founding mentor with The Working Lunch program, supporting underrepresented entry-level people in STEM. At the recent Australian Game Developer Awards, Rae was the recipient of the first “Lighting The Way” award for advocacy and support of the local games industry.
Rae is a part of the prestigious “brains trust” Leonardos group for The Science Gallery Melbourne, and an Ambassador for St Vincent De Paul.
Founder & CEO – Lumachain
Jamila Gordon founded Lumachain in 2018 and quickly partnered with Microsoft, having taken part in the tech giant’s first scaleup program. Within 18 months she had raised funding of $3.5 million to develop the business via a funding round led by Main Sequence Ventures, the manager of CSIRO’s Innovation Fund.
Jamila’s background includes roles as Group Chief Information Officer of Qantas Airways and Leighton Holdings/CIMIC. Prior to this, she was a global executive with IBM based in Europe. Jamila has also worked with AXA Insurance and ABN AMRO Bank.
Jamila’s professional success is made more remarkable by her personal story. Born in Somalia, Jamilla was forced to work from the age of five, rather than getting an education. At 18, she escaped the Somali civil war alone and found her way to Kenya and then on to Australia. Jamila set about learning English and then studied IT at La Trobe University, before commencing a career that has taken her around the world.
Director of Marketing, Australia and New Zealand, Google
As Google’s Director of Marketing, across Australia and New Zealand, Aisling looks after the Google and YouTube brands, connecting Aussie and Kiwi consumers and businesses with the range of Google’s products. This includes products like Search and Maps, YouTube, Pixel and Nest, and Google’s ads platforms.
Aisling has over 20 years marketing experience across telco, tech and media sectors. Joining Google nine years ago in Europe, she helped to grow the Android ecosystem in its early years and driving consumer engagement with core Google apps like Search and Maps.
Aisling returned home from London to lead Google’s media buying division across the Asia-Pacific region, ensuring Google marketing delivered best-in-class media strategy and execution.
Prior to Google, Aisling spent 10 years at Telstra, where she held various leadership roles in strategy, finance, marketing, and retail and online channels.
In 2019, Aisling was included in the annual CMO50 list, recognising Australia’s most innovative and effective marketing leaders. Aisling is also a Director on the Board of AANA (Australian Association of National Advertisers).
Aisling lives in Sydney with her husband and their two children. She loves kayaking, travelling, languages and spending time with family and friends. Her vices are chocolate and wine!
Managing Director – Publicis Sapient Australia
Sarah Adam-Gedge is a prominent business leader specialising in digital transformation and technology disruption. Sarah has worked in project and service-based consultancies for more than 25 years across Australia and New Zealand, Asia-Pacific, Middle East, Africa and Latin America. Currently, Sarah is the Managing Director of Publicis Sapient Australia, which is the digital business transformation hub of the Publicis Groupe. Publicis Sapient consists of 20,000+ employees in 53 offices around the world. Publicis Sapient’s expertise spans technology, data science, management consulting and creative enabling the ability to deliver on complex transformation initiatives that accelerate clients’ businesses through the creation of the products and services their customers expect.
Managing Director – AKQA Melbourne
As Managing Director of AKQA Melbourne, Alisia has been a trusted advisor to clients including Officeworks, AustralianSuper, HESTA, NAB & Bunnings, helping them navigate the new normal in a rapidly changing digital world.
Passionate about strategic communication solutions, Alisia brings a wealth of knowledge and experience across all major industry verticals. She operates best in a collaborative environment of diverse thinking, thriving alongside people who challenge conventions.
Alisia is passionate about creating environments where people constantly grow, learn and thrive. She seeks to inspire the 170 strong team in Melbourne to create powerful digital and offline brand experiences for clients, ensuring empathy with the individual remains at the heart of that experience.
CEO & Founder, Code Like A Girl
As founder and CEO of Code Like a Girl, Ally Watson is a passionate advocate for aspiring female coders. Her highly acclaimed education startup empowers women and girls to play an equal part in building the future. Once ‘the only girl in the room’ as a software engineer, she’s now an award-winning entrepreneur and spokesperson for the future of women in technology.
Experience Design and Product Strategist
Shruti has over 10 years of experience, designing, delivering product and service innovations across a variety of award-winning projects for local and global brands such as Toyota, Nike, Google, Macquarie Bank and Telstra.
She’s motivated by the endless possibilities of a better community created by the convergence of culture, human behaviour, design and technology.
She’s also always tried to champion solutions that look beyond biases so more people can benefit from better design. Being a new mum, she’s been recently navigating a whole new world and a new identity, while juggling a job, a pram and a baby. This has furthered her passion in pursuing good design diversity that needs to be empathetic to a broader spectrum of society. Because good design is good business.
Independent Creative Director, Google Creative Lab
Tea Uglow is a writer, LGBTQ activist, and a speaker on innovation, inclusion, and digital futures.
Tea founded Creative Labs for Google in Sydney (2011) and London (2007) and focuses on projects with cultural organisations to enable artists, writers, dancers and other cultural practitioners to digitally augment or interpret their work. As a queer activist she is co-author of the proposal for a trans pride flag emoji, and authored a compilation of LGBTQ activist speeches called Loud and Proud.
Her writing includes: Loud & Proud [Quarto, 2020] and A Curiosity of Doubts [Penguin, 2016]. In 2018 she was awarded a Peabody for digital storytelling for ‘Editions at Play’ a series of digital books with Visual Editions including We Kiss the Screens  & A Universe Explodes .
She currently advocates for mental health and transgender awareness and mentors queer, female and other intersectional creators and writers worldwide. She likes pop-physics, neuroscience for beginners, queer twitter, and shopping.
Her pronouns are She/They.