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PhD Econ, M Phil Econ, JD Law, BA Econ
Alberto was appointed Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Orica on 19 May 2015. He is a former Group Executive and Chief Executive of BHP Aluminium, Nickel and Corporate Development, Chief Executive Officer of Cerrejón Coal Company and Colombian oil company, Ecopetrol. Prior to this, Alberto was an Executive Director of the International Monetary Fund, held senior roles in the Colombian government, and has been a Board member of a range of private, public and non-government organisations.


Born in Marulan, New South Wales, she is an Economics/ Law graduate from the University of Sydney. She later obtained a Master's Degree in International Development (RMIT University) and a Master's Degree in Evaluation from the University of Melbourne.


Sophie worked initially as a lawyer and then in facilitation and personal development. She later worked in the international development sector for 12 years, with international NGOs and also the Australian Government, working in Guyana, Costa Rica, PNG, the Solomon Islands and Southeast Asia, mainly Vietnam and the Philippines.


She worked in Peru for three years (2012 to 2015), initially as the regional manager for the Government of Australia’s Latin America aid program and later as Deputy Chief of Mission for Peru and Bolivia. From 2016-17 she was Director for climate change negotiations for the Australian government in Canberra. In June 2017, she was appointed Australia’s Ambassador to Colombia and in February 2018 as Concurrent Ambassador to Venezuela. She currently resides in Bogota, Colombia with her husband and three children.

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The Hon. Tony Pagone is the President of the International Association of Judges.  He retired from the Federal Court of Australia at the end of March 2018 where he had been the national co ordinating judge of the Taxation National Practice Area.  Before his appointment to the Federal Court he was a judge of the trial division of the Supreme Court of Victoria and had been the judge in charge of the Commercial Court of that Court.  


He graduated from Monash University in 1979 with a Bachelor of Laws and from Cambridge University with a Master of Laws in 1983.  In 2014 he was awarded an LLD from the University of Melbourne for his research and published work on anti tax avoidance provisions.  He was admitted in Victoria as a legal practitioner in 1980, signed the roll of counsel in 1985, and was appointed Queen’s Counsel for Victoria in 1996.  


He practised widely in taxation law, commercial law, administrative law, constitution law, public and human rights law during his career at the Bar.  He was also Special Counsel to the Australian Taxation Office between 2002 and 2004.  He is a professorial fellow of the Melbourne Law School and lectures in several post-graduate courses at the Melbourne Law School and from time to time in the Law Faculty at Monash University


Catalina is an experienced political reporter for the Network Ten. Catalina was previously an Associate Producer, reporter and presenter for Channel Nine in Sydney and also a news reporter, journalists and presenter for Channel 7 both in Dubbo, NSW and in Canberra. She also worked as a news reporter for WIN television in the Australian Capital Territory. 

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Stephen was an Australian Senator from 1990-1995 when he chaired both the Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade and the Senate Regulations Committee. Before his Senate service, Stephen was General Secretary of the Australian Labor Party NSW Branch (1983–90) and ALP National President (1991–92). Stephen is now Chair of the Advisory Board of Thales Australia and a Director of O’Connell Street Associates.  

He's immediate past chair of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, where he is now a Senior Fellow. He is also a Visiting Fellow at the University of Sydney’s United States Centre. In addition, Stephen is as a Corporate Councillor of the Asia Society (Australia) and on the Salvation Army Territorial Advisory Board.


He is also a commentator on Australian and US politics for Sky News; writes for The Australian, The Spectator (Australia) and The Strategist. Stephen has previously served on the Boards of CoverMore Travel Insurance and the Australian-American Leadership Dialogue, as well as the Advisory Boards of Veolia (Australia/NZ), Crescent Capital and the Woomera Prohibited Area.


Andrew co-founded Aspen Medical in 2003 with his business partner, to provide outsourced health solutions for Government and other large Organisations. Today, Aspen Medical is a highly successful International Company employing some 2200 personnel in Australia, the Pacific, West Africa, the Middle East, the UK and the USA.

Business Review Weekly (BRW Fast 100, October 2007) placed Aspen Medical as the fastest growing company in Australia in 2007; in 2008 Aspen Medical was named Australia’s “Coolest Company” and in 2009, “Australian Private Business of the Year”. In addition, Aspen Medical has won multiple for exporting including National Exporter of the Year (Small to Medium Business Category Winner) in 2011 and National Health and Biotechnology Exporter of the Year 2013.  In 2015, the company won the Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM) Overseas Humanitarian Aid Project of the Year.


In 2014 Andrew was inducted into EY’s Entrepreneur of the Year Global Hall of Fame. In October 2016, EY named Andrew Australian Entrepreneur of the Year. Andrew is the Past-Chairman of the Melbourne Chapter of the Young Presidents Organisation. He has graduate and postgraduate qualifications in Medicine and Medical Science from Newcastle University and on graduation won the AMA Prize for 1986.


In 2015 he was appointed a Conjoint Professor of Practice at the Newcastle University’s School of Medicine. He also has an MBA from The University of Melbourne. Andrew won the University of Newcastle Alumni Award 2016 for National Leadership. In 2010, with business partner, Andrew founded the Aspen Foundation, a charity aimed at improving the health of Australia’s Indigenous communities. The Aspen Foundation has targeted its efforts at helping to eradicate trachoma and Rheumatic Heart Disease (RHD) from the Aboriginal community and has formed strategic alliances with the Fred Hollows Foundation and One Disease at a Time.


Peter Jennings is the executive director of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) a position he has held since May 2012. Peter has worked at senior levels in the Australian Public Service on defence and national security. Career highlights include being Deputy Secretary for Strategy in the Defence Department (2009-12); Chief of Staff to the Minister for Defence (1996-98) and Senior Adviser for Strategic Policy to the Prime Minister (2002-03).  Since May 2012 Peter has expanded ASPI’s role from its original high-quality research on defence to include research on cyber security; policing and international law enforcement, border security, national resilience and counter terrorism studies.


Now with around 40 staff and close working relations with Government, Parliament and industry, ASPI is Australia’s leading think-tank on national security. Peter’s research interests include Australian and regional defence policies, military operations, crisis management, government decision making and future defence capabilities. Peter studied at the London Business School in 2000–2001 as a Sloan Fellow and was awarded a Masters of Science (Management) with Distinction.


He has a Master of Arts Degree in International Relations from the Australian National University (1987) and a BA (Honours) in History from the University of Tasmania (1980–1984). He has been a Fulbright Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1985). Peter taught politics and international relations at the University of New South Wales/ADFA (1987–1990). Peter was awarded the Public Service Medal in the Australia Day 2013 Honors list for outstanding public service through the development of Australia's strategic and defence policy, particularly in the areas of Australian Defence Force operations in East Timor, Iraq and Afghanistan. In February 2016 Peter was awarded the French decoration of Knight in the National Order of Legion d’Honneur.




After managing reptile farms in Colombia for more than a decade, Giovanna moved to the Northern Territory. Today, Giovanna is a highly respected crocodile farmer, and together with Grahame Webb, runs one of Darwin’s most popular tourist attractions, Crocodylus Park.  Giovanna houses 10,000 crocodiles, undertakes research projects and educates 60,000 visitors each year.


A successful business woman, Giovanna’s crocodile skins are sold to high-end European fashion houses and manufactured into handbags.  Committed to creating employment opportunities for Indigenous people, Giovanna has developed a pilot program that is training Indigenous women in the skills they need to build sustainable businesses in the crocodile industry.  Giovanna is introducing her trainees to a wide range of crocodile farming activities and has already helped communities generate income by incorporating crocodile skins, teeth, and eggs into their unique artwork to transform crocodile by-products.


Telmo was elected to the Victorian Parliament in 1999 and is the State Member for Tarneit. Born in Montevideo, Uruguay, Telmo is the first Member of Parliament in Australia to have been born in a Spanish speaking country. Following his involvement in the student and union movements in the 1970s, Telmo was exiled in Argentina and later migrated to Australia in November 1974, during the Whitlam government.


Telmo is committed to the Western Suburbs of Victoria and has served in the former electorate of Sunshine before its abolishment and re-division in 2002 then Derrimut before being elected to represent the people of Tarneit in 2014. It was under the policies of Gough Whitlam that Telmo was able to complete his education; learning English in his early 20s before becoming the first in his family to graduate from university under the Tertiary Education Allowance Scheme.

Telmo served the Australian Trade Union Movement and a number of federal Labor MPs, including the former Deputy Prime Minister of Australia Brian Howe under the Hawke–Keating Governments. He is a passionate soccer fan - supporting Melbourne Victory - and enjoys open sea swimming, music, languages and cultures.


Mr. Elbert Prado has been a Group Executive at Nufarm since July 2013 and more recently since 2018, he has been acting as General Manager for Latin America. Elbert has comprehensive experience in crop protection manufacturing and related areas. He served as Senior Safety Executive for the Rohm and Has organization and has had broad exposure and interaction with commercial aspects of the business.


He has spent most of his career with Rohm and Haas, with stints in Colombia, Brazil and Mexico before assuming responsibility for all Latin American operations, based in Miami. He then moved to London, assuming a European Regional Director role. In 2007, he was promoted to the position of Global Manufacturing and Supply Chain Director for the Rohm and Haas process chemicals and biocides business, with responsibility for 11 manufacturing sites in Europe, Asia and the Americas and global supply chain.


Most recently, he has been employed in a senior operations role with the UK based trading group, ED&F Man Holdings. He is a Colombian national and US citizen with extensive international experience in senior operations roles within the chemical industry. He served as a Director of Sociedad de Inversiones Campos Chilenos S.A. Mr. Prado has a Degree in Chemical Engineering.


Soraya is a Colombian journalist graduated from the Universidad del Valle, with postgraduate studies in Marketing Management and Master in Politics from the Javeriana University in Cali. In her hometown, she worked for different news outlets and television channels, including Telepacifico and Canal Caracol, and public offices such as El SENA and la Personeria Municipal where she had the role of Communication Advisor, before arriving in Australia in 1999. She has been linked to SBS since 2001.


Michael is responsible for the management of Control Risks Bogotá’s operations and the development, management and delivery of projects for Andean region clients and for global clients operating in the region. Additionally, as a Director of Control Risks’ Global Services department, Michael oversees the development of customized, high-end solutions and account management for Control Risks’ clients across South America.

His experience has included delivering a variety of market entry and problem-solving assignments for multinational clients in geographies as diverse as Laos, Suriname, Abu Dhabi, Peru, Papua New Guinea and Somalia. He has worked on major risk and threat assessment tasks, including the operation of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, where he was a key security and risk consultant to the Australian government.


Prior to joining Control Risks, Michael worked as a litigation attorney. At that time, he was authorized to practice
as a solicitor and barrister in New South Wales and the High Court of Australia. Michael attained a Master of Laws, Bachelor of Laws, and Bachelor of Economics through the University of Sydney. He holds Diplomas in Government (Fraud Investigations & Fraud Prevention) from Charles Sturt University. He also completed a Master’s degree in International Relations at Cambridge University - focusing on terrorism and transnational crime- where he received a High Performance under examination. Michael also has a Certificate IV qualification in Risk Management.


Roberto is a lawyer from Externado de Colombia University. He also completed his postgraduate studies in France, where he completed a postgraduate degree in Comparative Law at the University of Paris II Pantheon, Sorbonne. He has dedicated most of his life to the academy, is a member of the Board of Directors of the Externado de Colombia University, dean and founder of the Faculty of Government and International Relations of that same university.


He was Vice Minister of Justice between 1992 and 1994. Then, between 1999 and 2000, he was Secretary of the Office of the Interior of Cundinamarca. Roberto Hinestrosa Rey was also Procurator Delegate for the Economy and the Public Treasury in 2001. Subsequently, he was Delegate Procurator for Decentralization and Territorial Entities between 2005 and 2008. At the end of this position, he was Chief of Staff of the Governor of Cundinamarca in 2008. He was distinguished with the Order of the Congress of Colombia, in the Caballero degree, in 2006. He is currently Council Member of Bogotá for the Cambio Radical party, re-elected for the period 2016-2019.


Jason Stirbinskis is the Managing Director of Andes Resources, a Colombian focussed gold/copper explorer. Jason is a Geologist with over 25-years experience in gold & base metals exploration in America, Africa, Scandinavia, Australia and Asia. He has previously held MD/CEO roles at Philips River Mining; Central Asia Resources and Drake Resources Ltd and is currently a NED of Botswana focused Mount Burgess Mining.  


Jason has an MBA, spent a large portion of his career in strategic consulting and held executive roles in Banking & Finance and in Metallurgical / Engineering Consultancies. Jason was the General Manager of the 2006 Telstra Small Business of the Year and AMP Innovator of the Year; and was a finalist in the 2008 Frontier Explorer of the Year. Jason has held the role of Honorary Consul of Kazakhstan in Western Australia since 2008. 


The story of Sasa Sestic begins long before winning the title of World Barista Champion 2015. From humble beginnings in war-torn Bosnia, Sasa’s family immigrated to Australia in 1997. Driven by a love of sport, Sasa competed for Australia in European Handball in the Sydney Olympics in 2000. However, it wasn’t until he started making coffee in a bakery in Canberra that Sasa’s true passion was realised.

While immersed in the café culture, Sasa’s obsession with coffee and his passion for quality led him to begin roasting coffee beans in a garage, attempting to learn everything about coffee and how to perfect it as a drink. This obsession would soon change his life and the world of speciality coffee.


Sasa saw an opportunity to produce high quality and sustainable specialty coffee in a small café, a plan that was etched onto the back of a napkin while sharing a coffee with friends. Ten years on, Sasa heads a global distribution company, ONA Coffee Wholesale (Canberra) Pty Ltd, and a range of cafés including The Cupping Room, ONA Coffee House and ONA Manuka.

Sasa and his company have won a host of prestigious industry awards. In the Australian 2015 Golden Bean Roasting Competition, ONA Coffee was awarded gold medals in four categories including Espresso/Filter (Pressed), Milk Based, Chain/Franchise Milk and Chain Store/Franchise. In the 2015 TISCAWRBC Competition held in Taiwan, ONA Coffee won the awards for Best Espresso and Best Roaster. Sasa’s personal accolades are equally impressive with a haul of titles including five ACT Barista Champion titles, two ACT/NSW Barista Champion titles, 2015 and 2016 Australian Barista Championship titles and, most notably, 2015 World Barista Champion.