Australia Unlimited: Global Talent

26 Jan 2013

Author: Australia Unlimited



Australia Day is a time to reflect on what it means to be Australian, and to celebrate the achievements of Australians from every State and Territory. It’s also a time to think about Australia’s place in the world, and the contributions of our expatriate community.
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Around 1 million Australians are offshore at any one time, most of them on a long-term or permanent basis. Far from being a brain drain, our ‘gold-collar’ diaspora plays an important role in Australia’s interaction with the world.  They share Australian expertise, ideas and ways of doing things, project a compelling image of Australia and provide networks and connections for Australians and Australian organisations.   

Australian expats tend to be well educated, well connected and successful. Some of Australia’s most talented, productive and motivated citizens chose to spend time building their careers away from home. Many retain a strong sense of Australianness and plenty of good-will towards their country of birth. The warmth is returned by Australians at home who are generally very positive about expats, and value the economic and reputational benefits the Australian diaspora brings.  

Some of our most successful countrymen and women are household names. But most are not. The Australia Unlimited: Global Achievers list recognises 50 Australians living and working abroad who have come to our attention.

Some are at the pinnacle of their careers and others are just starting out. What they have in common is creativity, energy and an Australian passport.

Tech entrepreneurs, executives with multi-nationals, investment bankers, journalists, artists, designers and advertising creative, humanitarians, academics and exporters all feature on this impressive list.

From 29 year-old big data entrepreneur Ben Keighan, to 82 year-old Stuart Devlin known as the world’s best silversmith, Australians are achieving extraordinary things in every corner of the globe.   

There are of course many, many more than those list here. And we’d love to know who they are. Send us your suggestions: @AusUnlimited.



Amelia Lester      USA

Managing Editor The New Yorker   


At the tender age of 26, Amelia Lester was named Managing Editor of The New Yorker. Her job is to make sure that one of the world's most respected magazines comes out in the best possible shape.  Formerly an editor at The Paris Review, Amelia graduated from Harvard University and lives in Brooklyn. 


Andrew Biggs   Thailand

Journalist, author and TV personality, Andrew Biggs Academy  


Australian journalist Andrew Biggs arrived in Bangkok in 1989 on a two-day stopover and has been there ever since. In the past 24 years he’s become a high profile Thai-speaking farang (foreigner) working as a journalist, radio commentator, TV host, author, publisher and founder of English language school, the Andrew Biggs Academy. In 2005 Biggs was the first foreigner awarded the Phetch Siam Award for excellence in using the Thai language, evidenced by some 16 books he’s written including the 1997 bestseller How to Speak Thai Like a Farang.


Annette King     Singapore

President and CEO Manulife Singapore

Annette King got an early start in the financial services game with Australian firm Colonial at the age of 17. Relocating to Singapore in 2004 as Chief Financial Officer with AXA Singapore, Annette King was appointed as President and CEO of Canadian insurance giant Manulife’s Singapore operation in 2010.  With extensive knowledge of the Asian marketplace, Annette oversees 200 staff and more than 1,000 financial planners across life insurance, financial advice and wealth management.


Annie Meyer      Hong Kong

Asia CEO, Transtar International Freight Limited

As Director and Asia CEO of Transtar International Freight Limited, Annie manages some 95 staff in China, South East Asia and the Regional Head Office in Hong Kong where she is based full-time. Appointed to the role in 2007, Annie is responsible for driving new business and implementing an aggressive expansion plan throughout the region.


Anthony Goldbloom     USA

Founder and CEO Kaggle


Anthony Goldbloom taught himself how to code using a 'for dummies' book and in doing so, took the first step in creating Kaggle. It’s a big success in the big business of big data. By providing an online marketplace of 75,000 of the smartest scientific minds in the world, Kaggle is helping to tackle tricky data-related issues such as mapping the HIV virus and predicting the winner of the Eurovision song contest. At just 29, Anthony Goldbloom has nurtured Kaggle from Melbourne to Bondi and all the way to Silicon Valley, where he’s managed to raise more than $US11 million. Unsurprisingly, he was named in Forbes Magazine’s 30 under 30. 


Ben Keighran   USA

CEO and co-founder Chomp


Ben Keighran was just 22 when he packed up and moved from Sydney to the tech-heart of the United States. He’d already founded a mobile messaging business called bluepulse in Australia, but it was in Silicon Valley that he really thrived. In 2007 he raised US$6.5 million from US investors and was named one of America’s top entrepreneurs under the age of 25 by BusinessWeek Magazine. Two years later he founded his next startup, Chomp. Focused on making it easier for smartphone and tablet users to find useful apps, Chomp was eventually bought by Apple in 2012.  A few years ago the idea of Australian startups attracting such deals was almost unheard of, but Keighran helped start a trend that other Australian entrepreneurs have been quick to take advantage of.


Bobbi Dunphy     USA

Chief International Officer, LifeGivingForce


Social entrepreneur Bobbi Dunphy appreciates the simple things in life. Like access to clean water.  This comes from spending most of her time working in challenging places such as Haiti where, as Chief International Officer of LifeGivingForce, she is spearheading a bold initiative to get clean water to those in need.


Bryce Lowry   UK

Publisher Australian Times


When Bryce Lowry arrived in London he envisaged a brief fund-raising layover before continuing his round-the-world trip.  That was 12 years ago.  A self-confessed politics junkie, he is the publisher of the London-based Australian Times. First launched in 2004, the Australian Times is now available across 350 locations in London with a weekly print distribution of 18,200, a flourishing website and a popular eNewsletter. It editorialises on the legal, career and personal ramifications of being an expat and is thriving despite tough economic conditions.  


Chadden Hunter    UK

Producer/Director, BBC Natural History Unit


Dr Chadden Hunter is a producer and director with the BBC’s Natural History Unit. He is best known for his work with Sir David Attenborough on the internationally acclaimed series’ Planet Earth and Frozen Planet. Chadden Hunter is passionate about sport, a respected academic, conservationist, wildlife biologist and documentary maker.


Chris McCormak     Eurpore/USA



Chris McCormack won the Ironman World Championship in 2007. He backed that up with another win at 39 in 2010 making him the oldest ever athlete to do so. With an uncanny ability to grab headlines and more than 150,000 twitter followers, McCormack’s reputation as a talented and tactically brilliant competitor is matched by his skills as a communicator.


Craig Bavinton     Brazil

MD Kangaroo Tours and Kangaroo Education

Craig Bavinton was working as a plumber in Melbourne in the 1990s when he first went to Brazil for a holiday. He saw that Brazilian tourism to Australia was virtually non-existent and so returned a year later and built Kangaroo Tours from scratch to become the country’s premier agency for travel Down Under. Staff numbers are continuing to grow with more than 50 people in four offices in Brazil and Chile. He attributes his success to a strong Australian work ethic and a willingness to invest in staff.


Damien Mander    Zimbabwe

Founding Director and Chairman, International Anti-Poaching Foundation


Damien served as a Special Operations Sniper and Clearance Diver in the Australian Defence Force. Whilst deployed in Iraq he project managed the Iraq Special Police Training Academy, overseeing training of up to 700 cadets at one time. Following three years on the frontlines of the Iraq war he departed in 2008 with no new direction in life. A trip to Africa left him face-to-face with the horrors that the world’s wildlife is facing. Liquidating his personal assets, he founded the International Anti-Poaching Foundation. The organisation focuses on ranger training, operations and integrating modern solutions, such as drone technology, into conservation. 

Today, he is a soldier turned environmental activist living in Africa. He spends several months each year back home in Australia with family and spreading the word about the environmental struggle the world is facing. Damien's work has had extensive media coverage including National Geographic Magazine, 60 Minutes, Animal Planet and Good Weekend Magazine to name a few.


Danny Kennedy     USA

Co-founder of Sungevity


Danny Kennedy, co-founder of Sungevity, aims to do for solar technology what Amazon did for books.  His vision, shared by co-founders Andrew Birch and Alec Guettel, helps people harness the power of the sun through solar panels. Sungevity is the fastest growing provider of residential solar installations in the US, employing about 250 people in California. Kennedy was honoured with an Innovator of the Year award from the US PBS television program Planet Forward.


David Droga     USA

Creative Chairman, Droga5


David Droga has turned his Australian creative credentials into a lucrative career as one of the world’s most successful advertising executives. His journey from Thredbo to New York led to the founding of Droga5 in 2006, now a three-time U.S. Agency of the Year winner. As its Creative Chairman, Droga has overseen the agency's growth to a second office in Sydney and built a client roster that includes Prudential, PUMA, Mondelez International, Coke Zero, Kraft Foods Group, Hennessy, Newcastle Brown Ale, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Unilever, Qantas, Woolworths and the United Nations, among others. 


Dion Beebe     USA


Oscar-winning Australian cinematographer Dion Beebe got his first big break as the director of photography in the film Holy Smoke, starring Kate Winslet. A graduate of the Australia Film, Television and Radio school in Sydney, Beebe has always been drawn to strong scripts across shorts, feature films and documentaries including Crush, Praise and What I Have Written.  The lure of Hollywood took Beebe to Los Angeles to try his luck, but it was his talent rather than luck that secured his first Oscar nomination for the musical Chicago. In 2006 he won the Academy Award for Cinematography for Memoirs of a Geisha, his official stamp of approval from the film industry.


Elias Bizannes     USA

Founder and Leader, StartUpBus


Elias Bizannes moved from Sydney to San Francisco to develop a project that aimed to make it easier to move data between social networks. But it was through the real-world Silicon Valley contacts that he made his mark. In 2010, he jump-started the StartUpBus to take 25 entrepreneurs on a business-building road trip to South by Southwest Interactive, a technology conference in Austin. By 2012 the numbers had grown to 1200. Bizannes is now developing StartupHouse, an incubator to fund the people he finds through StartupBus that provides them with access to his extensive networks in the investor community.


Emily Harrison     India

Entrepreneur & Humanitarian, Innovaid Advisory Services

Based in Mumbai, entrepreneur and humanitarian Emily Harrison couldn't be further away from the cattle farm she grew up on in rural New South Wales. She is the founder of Innovaid Advisory Services, a company providing strategic advice and management services to celebrities, high net worth individuals and corporates on their India-focused philanthropy and corporate social responsibility.  Her clients include cricketing stars, Bollywood actors, Indian Royalty and corporations.


Genevieve Bell     USA

Director of Interaction and User Experience, Intel


As head of Interaction and Experience Research at Intel Corporation, anthropologist Genevieve Bell is helping drive the future of people centred technology and reinventing how we experience computing. She has been named one of 25 women to watch by AlwaysOn, and one of the 100 Most Creative People in Business by Fast Company magazine. In 2012, Genevieve Bell was inducted to the Women In Technology International Hall of Fame.


Ido Leffler and Lance Kalish     USA

Co-founders, Yes To Inc



A never-say-die attitude and a desire to create an iconic brand saw Lance Kalish and Ido Leffler’s budding friendship at the University of Technology Sydney blossom into a formidable partnership which has led to enormous success with a natural beauty line, Yes To. Now sold in 29 countries and almost 30,000 stores throughout the world, Yes To fills a gap in the beauty market for ‘young, urban, mini-driving, virgin-flying, Apple-using individuals’ and is the number two natural beauty product in the world's biggest market - America.


Janet de Neefe     Indonesia

Founder of Ubud Writers Festival Ubud Writers Festival.


The Ubud Writers and Readers Festival is the brainchild of Australian Janet De Neef who came up with the idea in the wake of the Bali Bombings. From humble beginnings the Festival has grown to become one of the peak literary festivals in the world, with over than 20,000 event attendees and more than 100 visiting writers, playwrights, poets, song writers, academics, journalists and essayists over four days of literary conversations. This year will mark the 10th Anniversary of the Ubud Writers Festival


Jason Dundas     USA

TV Host


Jason Dundas got his break as a 21 year old when he won a nationwide competition to be the face of MTV Australia. He went on to become a popular host of Getaway before moving to New York last year to be the co-host of Vh1’s Big Morning Buzz Live, a pop-culture show filmed live daily in Times Square. A Sydney boy at heart, Dundas employs his Australian character to interview actors, musicians, celebrity chefs and sports stars and charm American audiences.


Jo Elvin     UK

Editor of Glamour magazine UK


Jo Elvin revolutionised the women’s glossy magazine industry with the launch of the UK’s first handbag-sized magazine in 2001. Today she is the legendary Editor of the highest-selling monthly magazine in Britain and Europe – Glamour Magazine. Not bad for someone that started out as the work-experience kid at Dolly Magazine.  


Jonathan Mills     UK

Director, Edinburgh International Festival.

As Director of the Edinburgh International Festival, Sydney born composer Jonathan Mills is at the helm of one of the most prestigious arts festivals in the world. Not many people had heard of Jonathan Mills when he took up the cherished post in 2006. With six highly successful Festivals under his belt, today he is both well-known and well-regarded.


Julian Savulescu     UK

Uehiro Professor of Practical Ethics, Oxford University


Julian Savulescu loves a good argument. Oxford University’s Professor of Practical Ethics says he doesn’t court notoriety. But he says it’s his job to provoke public debate. The Australian born philosopher has earned a lively reputation as a controversialist for his views on ethically harnessing the power of genetic engineering and stem cell research to enhance human wellbeing. Savulescu is much in demand in the British and international media and has been heard in interviews with the likes of Richard Dawkins and the BBC’s Andrew Marr.


Kate Kendall     USA

Founder and CEO, The Fetch


Kate Kendall founded in 2011 as a place for professionals to share and discover what's happening in their city. The Fetch is now in 10 cities around the globe (covering the US, Asia Pacific and Europe), reaching over 30,000 people and has a community of over 75 contributors. The site's been featured in publications like Harvard Business Review, Lifehacker, Marie Claire and The Age. Based in San Francisco, Kate is an advocate of startups, women in technology and is a regular speaker on these topics.


Kerry Hill     Singapore

Architect, Kerry Hill Architects

Kerry Hill, director of the Singapore-based practice Kerry Hill Architects, has been an influential figure in South East Asian architecture over the past three decades. He has completed some of the most architecturally ambitious and resolved projects to be found in South-East Asia, work which is resolutely modern while in a traditional setting. Kerry’s practice has completed a significant body of work across the region, including a growing list of high quality hotel and resort work, a number of award-winning houses, mixed-use developments, and public projects.  Last year Hill was awarded an Order of Australia.


Kris Fade     UAE

Deputy Programming Head, Virgin Radio


Kris Fade is an Australian-Lebanese entertainer who has become the most popular radio presenter across the Middle East.  With a string of awards to his name, the Kris Fade breakfast show on Virgin Radio 104.4 is the highest rated and billing show across the UAE.  His quick wit, charm and energetic delivery has won him over 1 million listeners every week, along with a strong social media following and a range of high-profile print and broadcast media opportunities.


Lucy McRae     The Netherlands

Body Architect, Lucy McRae


Lucy McRae is a Body Architect – a unique artist straddling the worlds of sculpture, architecture, science, fashion and design. Trained as a classical ballerina and interior designer, she uses the human body as her canvas.  Lucy spent four years at Phillips in the far future design research program. She is a TED fellow and has collaborated with Nick Knight, Aesop and a host of others. Lucy’s work has been exhibited at the Centre Pompidou and Palais de Tokyo. Lucy McRae’s Skin Probe dress was recognised by Time Magazine as one of the Best Inventions of 2007. Fast Company Magazine nominated her in their 50 Designers for the Future list in 2012. She’s currently working on a swallowable perfume.


Max Wolff     USA

Design Director, Lincoln

The Ford versus Holden rivalry is intense within the car industry so it was big news when Australian and former Holden young gun, Max Wolff, made the switch to Ford in the USA.  The car designer was a huge Holden fan growing up in Brunswick and got his start with Holden in 1998 working with the team that was designing the VY Commodore.  After a couple of stints in South Korea, Detroit called.  He has now been away from Australia for 10 years and while he’s still a die-hard Richmond supporter, the opportunities offered by Ford to help re-invent the Lincoln Motor Company will keep him where he is for a while yet.


Megan Elliott     China

Director X Media Lab


Megan Elliott is the archetypal 21st Century digital citizen. She grew up in Australia’s outback but is now a global nomad, with a nominal base in China, leading a company connecting creative entrepreneurs with the digital media industry’s leaders. Elliott is a Director of X Media Lab, part conference, part networking event, pitched as a platform to assist companies and individuals around the world get their digital concepts to international markets.  Since starting at the Sydney Opera House over 60 X Media Lab events have been held in 14 countries including China, India, Singapore, Malaysia, Switzerland, Sweden, the Netherlands and the UK.


Melissa Chiu


Museum Director, Asia Society


Born in Darwin to a Chinese-born father and Australian mother, Melissa Chiu is now acknowledged as one of the world’s leading experts in Chinese and Asian art.  What started as an interest fostered by the political and social atmosphere in Australia in 1990s led to the illustrious position of Museum Director of the prestigious Asia Society in New York.  Chiu is also the society’s Vice President of Global Art Programs and is responsible for the exhibitions at its Park Avenue museum in New York and at its recently opened museums in Houston and Hong Kong.



Michael Lynch     Hong Kong

CEO, West Kowloon Cultural District

 The world’s most ambitious arts centre is being built in Hong Kong and Australia’s Michael Lynch is the CEO. Actually, when we say ambitious, we really mean staggering. The West Kowloon Cultural District will include theatres, restaurants, galleries and the centrepiece museum of culture, M+ will surround a vast garden.  Aware of the challenges the job entails, Lynch argues it’s his long career as a cultural problem fixer and his Australian go-get-’em attitude that led to his appointment.  As the traditional Arts axis shifts from West to East, it’s no surprise to find an Australian right there at the centre.


Patrick Grove     Asia

Internet and new media entrepreneur


As well as being the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Catcha Group, an investment group that controls media and entertainment companies in Asia, Grove is the co-founder and Chairman of the ASX-listed iProperty Group in Kuala Lumpur which owns property portal websites in Malaysia, Singapore, India, the Philippines, Indonesia and Hong Kong. Named one of Asia's Best Young Entrepreneurs of 2008 by Bloomberg BusinessWeek and World Economic Forum, Grove is a young media entrepreneur to watch.


Patrick Llewellyn      USA

President & CEO, 99designs


Patrick Llewellyn joined 99designs, the world's largest graphic design marketplace, in 2009 after a decade advising Australian technology and media companies at NexTec Strategic Capital. In 2010 he moved to San Francisco to open a U.S. office and oversee U.S. and international expansion. Shortly after being appointed CEO in January 2011, Llewellyn guided 99designs to a $35 million first-round capital investment led by Accel Partners (Facebook, Dropbox, Etsy). He has since launched 99designs' European headquarters in Berlin as well as localized-language sites in Germany, Italy and France, and has grown the company from a handful of staff to more than 75 in San Francisco, Melbourne, Berlin, Paris and London. To date, 99designs has hosted more than 180,000 graphic design contests and paid out nearly $50 million to its community of more than 200,000 designers around the world.


Paul Kenny     Thailand

CEO Minor Food Group

Based in bustling Bangkok, Paul Kenny has led Minor Food Group PCL as CEO for over 12 years, following various management positions he held in MFG since 1993.  He is responsible for driving the overall strategic direction and growth of the company to where it is today. Currently the company operates more than 15 brands and a network of more than 1,300 restaurants in 16 countries internationally. He is a member of several boards, including Minor International PCL, listed on the Stock Exchange of Thailand.


Paull Young     USA

Director, Digital Engagement, Charity : Water


Paull Young is Director of Digital at charity: water, a non-profit organisation devoted to bringing clean and safe drinking water to those without. charity: water is frequently nominated as one of the leading digital non-profits and, evidence to Young’s expertise, generates 75% of its donations through digital channels. The fundraising site he is responsible for has raised over $20 million in 3 years. Young moved to New York from Sydney in 2007 as a well-known blogger and commentator having started one of Australia's earliest and most influential PR & Marketing Blogs, Young PR, in 2006. He has established himself as a thought leader on digital marketing and communications and online fundraising, and is regularly engaged to speak at events in the US and Australia.


Peter Hall     UK

Chairman and CIO, Hunter Hall

Philanthropist and Hunter Hall Chairman Peter Hall is a great believer in the power of the individual to do really important things. As the founder of Australia’s largest dedicated ethical investment fund he loves making money for his investors. And he loves working to prevent the extinction crisis the natural world is experiencing with a steadfast commitment to conservation, including saving endangered animals such as whales and Javan and Sumatran rhinos, the world’s most endangered large land mammals.


Peter Watts     USA

Founder of - a music-focused social network


Ever since learning to burn a CD, Peter Watts has been fascinated by the merging worlds of music and computing.  His first venture was a website where bands could easily print promotional posters. Now his latest idea has become one of the hottest concepts in the growing market for online music subscription services. is a music-focused social network that enables users of to share their experiences and discover new music. Watts built the original project in just three weeks in mid-2011 while working from his bedroom in Sydney. The latest version came to prominence in February 2012 when it won the grand prize at Spotify’s Music Apps Hack Weekend. It now has more than 100,000 users.


Polly Borland     UK

Photographer Polly Borland

Polly Borland is one of Australia’s most renowned cultural exports. Moving to the UK in 1989, she has earned a reputation as first class portrait photographer. Her editorial work has appeared in the Independent on Sunday Review and the Daily & Sunday Telegraph Magazines as well as Vogue, Elle, Arena and Dazed & Confused in the UK and The New Yorker, Vanity Fair and Details in the US. With a portfolio including her uber-famous image of the Queen, Polly Borland’s work is memorable. She’s in Australia at the moment with a major exhibition called Smudge opening on the Art Gallery of NSW on 31 January.


Ralph Heimans     UK

Portrait Artist


Ralph Heimans is one of the world’s foremost portrait painters. He moved to Paris in 1997 following a commission from the European Court in Luxembourg. His portraits of Crown Princess Mary of Denmark, the French National Rugby Team, Dame Elisabeth Murdoch, Paul Keating, Vladimir Ashkenazy and HM The Queen have won Ralph Heimans critical acclaim around the world.  He lives and works in London


Ryan Junee      USA

Silicon Valley entrepreneur


Ryan Junee is a serial entrepreneur, start-up advisor, investor and technophile.  He is currently CEO and Co-Founder of Inporia, and is a mentor at 500 Startups and StartMate.  His previous startup, Omnisio, developed innovative ways to edit and enhance online videos and was acquired by Google in 2008.  In his spare time, Ryan is an instrument rated private pilot, enjoys snowboarding and playing music.  He splits his time between San Francisco and New York.


Sarah Backhouse     USA

TV host, speaker and sustainability expert, Future360


Sarah Backhouse is one of America’s most recognisable faces in environmental media and clean energy.  When former US vice-president Al Gore gave the final presentation of his epic 24-hour "Climate Reality" event, it was Backhouse who welcomed him onto the stage. The Australian-raised television producer, presenter and emerging media entrepreneur has made it her mission to make clean-tech sexy with her new venture Future360– an online video portal that showcases the very best in clean technology.


Sean Kidney     UK

CEO Climate Bonds


Sean Kidney sees the transition to a low carbon economy as the greatest commercial opportunity of our time – investing in clean energy and low carbon infrastructure. As CEO of The Climate Bonds Initiative he is helping to activate an old fashioned financial instrument to help solve a modern problem.


Stuart Devlin     UK

Goldsmith and Jeweller to HM The Queen

Stuart Devlin has been described as the greatest designer in gold and silver since the incomparable Paul de Lamerie in the 18th Century. As part of a generation that included Joan Sutherland, Robert Helpmann, Peter Finch and Patrick White, Stuart Devlin has played an important role in showcasing Australian talent on the world-stage. He is the designer of Australia’s decimal coinage, and has designed coins for 36 other nations. With a slew of Royal Commissions and accolades over decades, his work was recently celebrated as part of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations.  More precious than Devlin’s glittering works is the opening in 2012 of the Goldsmiths’ Centre which he initiated some 7 years ago.


Tabatha Coffey     USA

Author and TV Host


 Tabatha Coffey is the author of ‘It’s not really about hair: The Honest Truth About Love, Life and The Business of Beauty and the host of successful TV show Tabatha Take Over. Tabatha Coffey was only 14 when she turned up to her local salon seeking work as an assistant.  She already knew her career would be in hair.  Fast forward to 2008 when a television show starring Coffey, an Australian hairdresser working in New Jersey premiered on Bravo, an American television network.  Known for her no-nonsense approach and savvy business expertise, Coffey has been widely credited for her ability to help struggling businesses and transform people’s lives. She draws on her own life experiences to offer straightforward advice and the empowering message of inner beauty and strength. Her television show, speaking appearances, and books inspire men and women around the world to take charge of their lives, their businesses, and their futures. While possibly an unusual choice for a US network, this Gold Coast girl has huge crowds tuning in each season, Season 5 of her show will air this Spring.


Tan Le     USA

Co-founder and President Emotiv


Tan Le is a technology entrepreneur. She is the Co-Founder and President of Emotiv, a neuroengineering company that has delivered a breakthrough interface technology that transforms the way humans interact with computers.  Before Emotiv, she co-founded and ran SASme, one of the companies responsible for the creation of Australia's SMS application market. She was a Special Visitor to the United Kingdom as a guest of the British High Commission and Foreign Commonwealth Office, a Goodwill Ambassador for Australia in Asia, and a Patron of the Australian Youth Ambassadors for Development Program. She has been an Ambassador for the Status of Women since 2001, and she's also been appointed to a number of prominent Boards. Tan has been honored by the World Economic Forum as a Young Global Leader since 2009. In 1998, she was named Young Australian of the Year and voted one of Australia's 30 Most Successful Women Under 30.


Terry Hawkins     USA

Founder and CEO of People in Progress


Terry Hawkins was so inspired by a speech from President Barack Obama calling for people to help an ailing America that she acted on a long-cherished dream to move to the US, relocating to Los Angeles in 2010.  Hawkins, one of Australia’s most in-demand motivational speakers and retail trainers, has delivered thousands of presentations all over the globe, as well as writing self-development and kids books. Her work has earned her a slew of accolades including the Radical Woman Entrepreneur for 2012, the President’s Call to Service Award and the 2013 NAPW’s Professional Woman of the Year - Business Education.



Vanessa Pappas     USA

Head of Audience Development at YouTube


Vanessa Pappas is currently Head of Audience Development at YouTube. Her focus is to help their 1MM+ content partners, from independent vloggers to big cable companies, build sustainable audiences on their channels. While at YouTube, she has led a number of key global initiatives including the development of the YouTube Playbook, the definitive resource for building viewership on the platform. Prior to joining YouTube, Vanessa was VP of Audience Development at a New York online video startup company, Next New Networks, which was acquired by Google in 2011. Here she spearheaded their audience growth strategies and oversaw key distribution partnerships that helped drive their total viewership to over 2 billion views. Vanessa resides in Brooklyn, a proud Australian, and lover of all things media and tech.


Yasmin Sewell     UK

Retail, fashion and lifestyle consultant


From agenda-setting retailer at just 22 to leading fashion buyer and globe-trotting consultant at 36, Yasmin Sewell has become one of the best-known and respected faces in the fickle global fashion business. She made her mark with an edgy private fashion store that turned stuffy service on its head and attracted everyone from serious fashion fanatics to big-name celebrities.