Women make up 60% of the APS, with the majority of these women holding positions at a classification of EL2 and below, peaking at the APS4 level where 70% of positions are held by women. To break through this glass ceiling, almost every department and agency has set ambitious targets to appoint women to senior leadership roles, which means that there is currently a tremendous opportunity for you to move further into leadership.
Stepping up your leadership can be daunting, and the leaders we look up to can seem superhuman from the outside. It’s easy to forget that they are just ordinary people, and that they have learned to harness their strengths to achieve extraordinary things. Learn how you can harness your strengths at the Public Sector Women in Leadership Summit 2021. Join us to gain insights from senior leaders, share experiences with your peers, hear incredible stories of courage and be inspired to lead with confidence.
What will you take away from this summit?• Keynotes, case studies, fireside chats and interactive panel discussions detailing the challenges overcome and lessons learned by women in the upper ranks of leadership
• In depth seminars with practical toolkits to strengthen your resilience and enhance your emotional intelligence
• Interactive group networking sessions with peers from across the sector who face the same circumstances as you
• Excellent connectivity and a tailored online experience facilitated by our premier conference platform and experienced IT, AV and delivery teams
Who will attend?• Current & emerging female leaders in from all types of government organisations
• Manager through to C-Suite, Commissioner & Secretary
• HR, Diversity & Learning & Development Professionals & Leaders
Previous Digital Summit Testimonials‘The experience was outstanding. The speakers were genuine, authentic, open and courageous. The ability to make comments in the chat and see what others were thinking in the moment really heightened the experience for me.’
- Program Manager, Department of Industry Science Energy and Resources, November 2020
‘This conference wasn’t just personal stories, but instead actionable take-away concepts and ideas.’
- Contract Manager, Department of Defence, November 2020
‘Best couple of days training I’ve had.’
- Assistant Director, Services Australia, July 2020
Benefits of attending
- Tap into the valuable lessons learned by senior women in public sector leadership
- Tackle career and leadership challenges head on and actively seek opportunities for growth
- Be inspired by incredible women achieving meaningful change
- Hear stories of vulnerability, authenticity and resilience from senior APS leaders
- OPENING VIP KEYNOTE: Leadership lessons from a career in government & public affairs
- Keynote: Reflections on a career as an Aboriginal woman in leadership
- LIVED EXPERIENCE: Sexual harassment in a non-traditional workplace context and the ramifications of inaction
- FIRESIDE CHAT: Leadership through disaster & crisis – Lessons from the worst bushfire season in history & COVID-19
2021 Australian of the Year
After being groomed and sexually assaulted by her maths teacher when she was just 15 years old, Grace Tame has spent the last 10 years turning her traumatic experience into being an advocate for survivors of child sexual assault and a leader of positive change.
Recognising the injustice of Tasmania’s gag order that prevented survivors from self-identifying publicly, Grace spent several months campaigning with #LetHerSpeak campaign. In 2019, she finally won the court order to speak out under her own name.
Now, 26 and based in Hobart, Grace is dedicated to eradicating child sexual assault in Australia, and supporting the survivors of child sexual assault.
Her focus is around enabling survivors to tell their stories without shame, educating the public around the process and lasting effects of grooming and working with policy and decision-makers to ensure we have a federal system that supports the survivors, not just perpetrators.
She is also a passionate yoga teacher, visual artist, and champion long-distance runner, having won the 2020 Ross Marathon in a female course record time of 2:59:31.
An open book about her experience, but even more passionate about preventing this from happening to other children, Grace speaks from the heart and will have her audience simultaneously inspired and in tears.
She is a regular keynote speaker, media guest and advocacy commentator.
Grace is the 2021 Australian of the Year.
Natasha Stott Despoja AO is the founding Chair of Our Watch (the Foundation to Prevent Violence Against Women and their Children).
Between 2013-2016, she served as Australia’s Global Ambassador for Women and Girls responsible for the promotion of women’s economic empowerment, women’s leadership and the reduction of violence against women and girls. Her diplomatic role included travel to 31 different nations and completing 45 country trips. She represented Australia at the UN, including at the Human Rights Council and addressed the UN Security Council.
This year, Natasha was recruited for the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, marking the first time that an Australian will serve on the Committee in 28 years.
Natasha recently completed a term on The World Bank Gender Advisory Council and served on a 2017 UN High Level Working Group on the Health and Human Rights of Women, Children and Adolescents.
She is a former Senator for South Australia (1995-2008) and former Leader of the Australian Democrats.
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
Cheryl L. Mason serves as the Chairman of the Board of Veterans Appeals (Board). As Chairman, Ms. Mason leads a team of approximately 1200 personnel including Veterans Law Judges, attorneys, and operations and administrative professionals to meet the Board’s mission of conducting hearings and deciding appeals on benefits and services for Veterans and their families.
Ms. Mason is accountable for the efficient and effective management of Board resources and executing a budget in excess of $190 million. The Board is the Secretary’s designee to decide appeals arising from all three administrations: Veterans Benefits Administration, Veterans Health Administration, and National Cemetery Administration as well as the Office of the General Counsel. Ms. Mason is the first woman to hold the position of Chairman.
Prior to assuming her current role, Ms. Mason held several positions at the Board including Deputy Vice Chairman, Veterans Law Judge, and Counsel. She also served as an attorney with the Federal Labor Relations Authority, a Department of the Air Force civilian at HQ United States Air Forces in Europe at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, and as an instructor at Central Texas College in Germany.
Ms. Mason is the spouse of an Air Force veteran, Lieutenant Colonel, USAF (retired), and is the daughter of a World War II Navy Veteran who died by suicide. She advocates for changing the culture and increasing awareness surrounding mental health and suicide awareness/prevention. Chairman Mason also is a key leader in the military spouse employment initiative, working to share best practices to encourage recruiting, hiring and retention of military spouses to support military readiness as well as transitioning Veterans.
Originally from Portsmouth, Ohio, Ms. Mason received her B.A. with Distinction in Political Science and Psychology from Ohio Northern University and her J.D. from Creighton University School of Law. Ms. Mason began her legal career in private practice in Omaha, Nebraska.
Shane Fitzsimmons was appointed as the inaugural Commissioner for Resilience NSW and Deputy Secretary, Emergency Management with the Department of Premier and Cabinet from 1 May 2020. This appointment followed a distinguished career with the NSW Rural Fire Service of over 35 years.
In 1998 he was appointed an Assistant Commissioner with the RFS and has held portfolio responsibilities for Operations, Strategic Development and Regional Management. In 2004, he was appointed the inaugural Australasian Fire Authorities Council (AFAC) Visiting Fellow to the Australian Institute of Police Management (AIPM) for a period of 12 months.
He is a member of the NSW State Emergency Management Committee, the NSW State Rescue Board and a Councillor of the Royal Humane Society of NSW Inc. He was awarded the National Medal in 1999 and Australian Fire Service Medal (AFSM) in 2001.