International Women’s Day Great Debate 2018 – Brisbane


South Bank, Brisbane

date & time

08/03/2018 - 12:00 pm to 2:30 pm

Institute of Managers and Leaders is delighted to announce the International Women’s Day Great Debate is back in 2018!

After this year’s unforgettable event, join us on Thursday 8 March 2018, to celebrate the achievements of women nationally and internationally.

This old school, long-lunch style debate sees six hand-picked, interesting and opinionated Australian leaders debating ‘The future is female’. Equality. Diversity. Progress, in two teams (the negative and the affirmative), our equally interesting and witty MC, Corinne Grant who will be on hand to keep things clean, on-topic and, of course, to stop too much fur flying.

In short, it’s a whole load of debating fun over a longish lunch to celebrate an internationally significant, diversity-focused day.

View photos of the International Women’s Day Great Debate 2017 here!

Event flyer available here.

Book your tickets today!

Silver Partner

Venue Partner

Charity Partner

Corinne Grant (MC)

Corinne got her TV kick-start as a regular Good News Week panellist back in 1999, and in no time became one of the most familiar faces on Australian television. Corinne was as an original cast member of Rove, first shown on Channel Nine, before moving with Rove Live to the Ten Network in 2000. In 2001 she became a founding member of ABC-TV’s The Glasshouse continuing with the show until it wrapped in 2006.

Corinne is an accomplished stand-up, MC, presenter, writer and broadcaster and has performed both nationally and internationally. She has appeared on everything from Spicks and Specks to Dancing With The Stars to Good News Week. She has co-hosted successful national radio shows, performed countless solo live shows and appeared everywhere from the Sydney Opera House to the Kalgoorlie Arts Centre. Her natural, down-to-earth charm and her quick wit have made her one of Australia’s best known, and most warmly regarded performers.



Jade Collins

Jade has over 19 years’ global experience in corporate executive human resources and management consulting roles in the mining, energy and aerospace industries, leading large scale, complex change management programs. Jade finds the combination of her HR, psychology and MBA qualifications and her leadership experience is invaluable for creating networks and engaging others to increase gender equality in leadership across industries.

Jade is a member of the Queensland Government’s Strategic Advisory Group for the Toward Gender Parity: Women on Boards Initiative. As a Director of Femeconomy, Jade is calling on women, who make 85% of purchase decisions, to shop brands with female leaders to create gender equality. This unique approach to advancing gender equality supports top-down strategies within corporate, government and not-for-profit sectors.


Karni Liddell

Karni Liddell’s journey to become one of Australia’s most successful Paralympians began a lot differently than most elite athletes. She was born with a neuro-muscular wasting disease and her parents were told that their first-born child wouldn’t walk, crawl or live past her teenage years. Karni broke her first World Record at the age of 14 and she went on to win Paralympic medals at every Paralympics she competed at and she regards being captain of the Number 1 team at the Sydney 2000 Games her greatest achievement.

Karni is the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) QLD Ambassador, sits on the United Nations Women’s board, a member of Dame Quentin Bryce’s Domestic and Family Violence Council, a radio broadcaster, a social commentator on Channel Nine’s ‘Chat Room’ and has just been appointed the Patron of the International Day of People with a Disability.


Anne-Marie Birkill FIML

Anne-Marie Birkill is a Managing Partner in OneVentures, a venture capital firm that invests in healthcare and technology companies that serve large, high growth global markets. The firm currently manages $320M.

Her previous roles include CEO of i.lab Incubator, various senior management appointments at UniQuest and Director of public (ASX listed) energy storage company RedFlow Limited. Anne-Marie has 15 years’ experience in leadership roles in agri-business companies developing and commercialising new cultivars of ornamental, aquatic, food and forestry plants.

An active member of the innovation community, she is an Industry Fellow with The UQ Business School, a member of the Investment Committee for the $40M Queensland Government Business Development Fund, and a Director for Creative Enterprise Australia and AVCAL. She is a strong advocate for improving the participation of women in technology and entrepreneurial careers.


Lance Hockridge FIML, GAICD, FILTA

Lance Hockridge is a private sector member of the Australian Government’s Department of Defence Gender Equality Advisory Board and a founding member of Queensland’s “Male Champions of Change” group that is leading diversity initiatives in the workplace in Queensland. He also won the Australian Human Resource Institute Diversity CEO Champion of 2014. He is Deputy Chairman of the Queensland Government Domestic and Family Violence Implementation Council.

Lance retired as Managing Director & CEO of Aurizon in November, 2016. Through his leadership, Aurizon has an empowerment partnership with Australian National Committee of United Nations (UN) Women. Lance has spoken at UN Women business events in Sydney, Brisbane and Perth. He has signed on behalf of Aurizon the UN’s Women Empowerment Principles. He was awarded a UN Empowerment Award in March 2016.

He is also the Chairman of The Salvation Army’s Queensland Advisory Board.


Stephanie Oates

Stephanie has nearly 2 decades of professional expertise dealing with managing and leading people through the various roles she has had in her career as an educator, business analyst, sustainability and project manager, management consultant, and now current director of Broad Aperture based in Brisbane.

With 5 degrees under her belt, Stephanie has a passion for translating strategy to benefit industries and communities.  As an MBA student, she spearheaded a charity project – Kinder Bleep – aimed at developing the musical interests of long-term patients at the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital. A highly experienced cultural change agent, Stephanie started her first consultancy in 2011.

She continues to follow her passion for leading change and disrupting industries on a global scale with a new initiative in promoting the role of women in the red meat industry.


Andrew Fenlon

Andrew co-created the Women Into Leadership program with his daughter to help organisations add significant value and drive results through increased diversity. A major ongoing focus has been helping to promote and develop women through coaching, mentoring and leadership programs which inspired the origins of Women into Leadership.

Andrew is a Chartered Accountant, a graduate of the AICD and holds an MBA. He has over 20 years of professional experience in building and improving both public and private sector organisations. He now uses his extensive experience in his roles as a Director of Women Into Leadership and Founder of Fast Track Leadership Pty Ltd.

As well as his Australian work, Andrew draws on his wide-ranging international experience in Europe and America to enhance outcomes and projects. Andrew loves a challenge and creating solutions to complex and intractable issues.


Event flyer available here.


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Venue Phone: 07 3308 3000

Venue Website:

The Great Hall, Merivale Entrance, Cnr Merivale and Glenelg Streets, South Bank, Brisbane, Queensland, 4101, Australia