UQ ChangeMakers: How can you join Australian leaders fighting the sustainability crisis?

Around the world, we’re seeing the increasing incidence of extreme weather events and natural disasters as the impact of our changing climate becomes more apparent.

However, the research is in – and there are solutions to these challenges. We just need to be brave enough to take them on.

Follow a debate about environmental sustainability with four leading members of the UQ community who are leading the response in their industries – working across mining, e-mobility, education and conservation.



Professor Deborah Terry AC

Vice-Chancellor and President
The University of Queensland

Professor Deborah Terry AC is Vice-Chancellor and President of The University of Queensland (UQ). Prior to commencing this role in August 2020, she served as Vice-Chancellor of Curtin University, in Western Australia (from February 2014 to July 2020). 

Professor Terry was made an Officer in the General Division of the Order of Australia (AO) in June 2015, in recognition of her distinguished service to education in the tertiary sector.

She is also Chair of the Board of Universities Australia; a Fellow and past President of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia; an appointed member of the Australian Research Council Advisory Council; and serves on the Australia and New Zealand School of Government Board and Australia's Academic and Research Network Board. 

Having grown up in Perth and Canberra, Professor Terry completed her PhD in Social Psychology at the Australian National University in Canberra. From there, she commenced her distinguished career at UQ in 1990, initially as an internationally recognised scholar in psychology. During her 24 years at UQ, Professor Terry progressed through a number of senior leadership roles to become Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor, before leaving for her role as Vice-Chancellor of Curtin University in early 2014.

Mr Mick Wilkes

Non Executive Director

Mr Wilkes is a seasoned mining professional with 35 years experience in the industry, mainly in gold and base metals. He has specialized in project development, construction, and operations throughout his career.

In the past 20 years he has been responsible as both a senior site manager and  executive for the successful greenfield development of 4 major gold and copper mines, each creating substantial value for shareholders, local communities and Governments with aggregate annual production of over 600koz of gold and 200kt of copper. These developments included the Sepon Gold/Copper Mine in Laos, the Prominent Hill Copper/Gold Mine in South Australia, the Didipio Gold/Copper Mine in the Philippines, and the Haile Gold Mine in South Carolina, USA.

Most recently Mr Wilkes was the President and CEO of Canadian and Australian listed OceanaGold Corporation, building the Company from a junior producer in New Zealand to a multinational mid-tier producer with 4 operations across 3 countries and a strong growth pipeline.

He was recently a member of the Board Administration Committee for the World Gold Council and is currently a member of the Advisory Board for the Sustainable Minerals Institute at the University of Queensland.  He is also a Non-Executive Director of Kingston Resources Limited.

Ms Jane Hunter

Chief Executive Officer
Tritium Pty Ltd​

Jane was appointed as CEO in March 2020, after joining Brisbane-based technology company Tritium in 2019 as Chief Operating Officer and Deputy CEO.  Tritium Pty Ltd is a global technology leader in the design and manufacture of fast DC chargers for electric vehicles.

 Tritium Pty Ltd has about 90% market share in Australia, 20% of the European market and 15% of the US electric vehicle charging market. They are headquartered in Brisbane at Murarrie and have offices in Los Angeles and Amsterdam. Prior to moving across to  Tritium Pty Ltd, Jane was the Chief Operating Officer for Boeing’s international advanced technology arm known as Phantom Works, responsible for developing the Loyal Wingman, the first Australian designed and built aircraft in 50 years.

This Boeing Division is also headquartered in Brisbane, with sites in Saudi Arabia, India, Korea and the UK. Whilst at Boeing, Jane was also a Company Director of Boeing Defence Australia and Boeing Distribution Services and Chaired the South Queensland Defence Advisory Board.

Jane has previously been independently recognised for her work, having received the award for Outstanding Contribution to the Aviation/Aerospace Sectors – Women in Aviation/Aerospace Australia at the A18 Airspace Awards, as well as the Women in Defence Award – Project Management category for the Australian Defence Magazine in 2019.

Ms Brooke Williams

PhD student
The University of Queensland

Brooke Williams is a PhD candidate at the University of Queensland in the field of Conservation Biology. Her research focuses on systematic planning and identifying priority areas for achieving conservation objectives. Her PhD is currently on hold for a few months to work on various spatial planning projects. In 2018 she was part of the prestigious Global Scholars Program at the University of Queensland.

ChangeMakers Moderator

Professor Anita Heiss

UQ Professor of Communications, The University of Queensland

Prof Anita Heiss is the award-winning author of non-fiction, historical fiction, commercial women’s fiction, children’s novels and travel articles. She is a proud member of the Wiradjuri Nation of central NSW,  an Ambassador for the Indigenous Literacy Foundation, the GO Foundation and Worawa Aboriginal College.

Her adult fiction includes Not Meeting Mr Right, Avoiding Mr Right, Manhattan Dreaming, Paris Dreaming and Tiddas. Her most recent books include Barbed Wire and Cherry Blossoms which was longlisted for the Dublin International Literary Prize and was named the University of Canberra’s 2020 Book of the Year.

The anthology Growing Up Aboriginal in Australia which Anita edited, was named the Small Publisher Adult Book of the Year at the 2019 Australian Book Industry Awards.

In 2004 Anita was listed in The Bulletin magazine’s “Smart 100”. Her memoir Am I Black Enough for You?  was a finalist in the 2012 Human Rights Awards and she was a finalist in the 2013 Australian of the Year Awards (Local Hero).

As an advocate for Indigenous literacy, Anita has worked in remote communities as a role model and encouraging young Indigenous Australians to write their own stories. On an international level she has performed her own work and lectured on Aboriginal literature across the globe at universities and conferences, consulates and embassies in the USA, Canada, the UK, Tahiti, Fiji, India, New Caledonia, China, Spain, Japan, Austria, Germany and New Zealand.

Anita is a board member of the State Library of Queensland, the University of Queensland Press and Circa. Anita is a Professor of Communications at the University of QLD and artist in residence at  La Boite Theatre, adapting her novel Tiddas for the stage.

Anita enjoys eating  chocolate, running half-marathons and being a 'creative disruptor'.


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