2018 WiT Life Sciences Ambassadors

Dr Carrie Hillyard, Chairman - Fitgenes

Dr Carrie Hillyard is currently an Angel investor and Chairman of Fitgenes and FizzioFit and Deputy Chairman of the Mater Medical Research Institute. She is also a member of the Entrepreneurs’ Program Committee of Innovation and Science Australia and a director of the Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE). Previously, she was a co-founder of venture fund, CM Capital Investments, a director of several of its investee companies and led its Life Sciences group for over 10 years. She has commercialised products from laboratory bench to market and is an inventor of a number of patented technologies. Her previous experience was in medical and diagnostics research in the UK and Australia. Carrie has also mentored entrepreneurs, assisted with commercialisation and licensing and served on a number of government, public and private company boards, including membership of the former Industry Research and Development Board and ANSTO. Dr Hillyard has a PhD from London University and is a Fellow of ATSE and of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. She is a recipient of a Centenary medal, the inaugural Women in Technology Biotechnology Star award and the AusBiotech Excellence award for her contributions to the biotechnology industry.

Prof. Colleen Nelson, Chair Prostate Cancer, QUT; Director Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre, QUT ihbi

Professor Nelson is recognised as a leader in programmatic translational prostate cancer research and for strategic development of international collaborative research Centres and networks accelerate the translation of scientific discoveries into clinical and commercial applications. She founded and directs the Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre- Queensland, where she leads 80 transdisciplinary Faculty and researchers. Prof Nelson has made significant contributions to prostate cancer translational research, specifically in characterising androgen action, identifying novel potential therapeutic targets; their validation and translation into the clinic. Her greatest impact has been on androgen targeted therapies and uncovering mechanisms underlying castrate resistant prostate cancer. Over her career she has been awarded more than $214M in international funding, and has organised, chaired, and presented at numerous international meetings and holds executive positions on prostate cancer advisory boards and committees. Prof Nelson has 21 international patents, 7 book chapters, 150 peer-reviewed publications, >200 conference abstracts, >7,000 citations and an H Index of 45 derived from > 20 years of prostate cancer expertise. She has been an invited speaker at 118 national and international conferences including the American Society of Clinical Oncology, Endocrine Society, European Association of Urology, ASCO-Genitourinary Cancers Symposium, American Society of Andrology, UK Prostate Cancer Forum, Prostate Cancer Foundation, Australian Society of Medical Research, Pfizer Oncology Forum, Discovery Science & Biotechnology Australia, World Microarray Congress and World Prostate Cancer Congress.

Prof. Neena Mitter, Theme Leader Agricultural Nanotechnology - The University of Queensland

Prof Neena Mitter at Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation, the University of Queensland (UQ) is one of Queensland’s leading biotechnologists, having been involved in molecular biology and biotechnology in Australia and India for over 20 years. She has won prestigious awards like Women in Technology Queensland Biotechnologist Award, Queensland International Fellowship and Young Scientist Award by the Prime Minister of India. She is internationally recognised for her leadership in innovative, cross-functional research and exceptional industry engagement to address global challenges of agriculture and food security. She leads a passionate, motivated and impactful research group of 22 staff and students to deliver global innovations at UQ, namely ' Non-GM and Non-toxic BioClay spray for crop protection’, ‘Single dose- shelf stable Nanovaccines for animal health and "Clonal propagation of avocado using plant stem cells". These are ground breaking platform technologies impacting agricultural production, environmental sustainability and socio-economic dynamics of farming community. Her high quality research has merited 40 publications in the last 5 years even within the landscape of commercial confidentiality. She is actively championing Ag-Nano innovations establishing UQ and Queensland as front-runners in providing global leadership for a better tomorrow.

2018 WiT ICT Ambassador

Bernadette Hyland, Founder

and CEO of 3 Round Stones Inc.

Bernadette has over 20 years’ experience deploying enterprise data solutions in financial services, healthcare and federal governments in Australia and the U.S. She has an exceptional ability to translate complex business requirements, map them to innovative cloud-based solutions and deploy applications on time, on budget. Prior to co-founding GeoHealth US and 3 Round Stones, Bernadette successfully led the growth of three tech startups including Plugged In Software Pty Ltd started in Brisbane in 1996, and Tucana Technologies Inc, (acquired by Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems 2005). Her early career included being a systems manager at Goldman Sachs where she developed real-time trading and settlement systems in New York and Tokyo. Bernadette has led information architecture projects for pharmaceutical and medical products companies, and national libraries. She is author of over a dozen publications on best practices for publishing complex data on the Web, including several published by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). A trusted adviser to senior executives, journalists and researchers, Bernadette is invited to speak at national and international fora on digital innovation and entrepreneurship. Mother of two teenagers, Bernadette is a 1st degree black belt in Aikido, a non-violent Japanese martial art and spends any available extra time mentoring kids and teachers at a MakerSpace she helped launch in early 2015. In 2017, she began full-time PhD research at the University of Queensland to advance the cause of publicly funded science data and addressing complex climate change policy. Expertise: Cloud computing, enterprise information management, Web Data Exchange Standards, Open Data, Linked Data, Open Source, Lean Startup, Agile programming, STEM education & robotics mentoring. Richons for teaching, research and service activities.


Our Previous Ambassadors


Pamela Russell
Heidi Uytendaal
Helen Murray

Anne-Marie Birkill

 Elizabeth Harper Selena Bartlett Maree Adshead Judith Clements

 Dimity Dornan
Richi Nayak


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