Entrepreneur Of The Year
2017 Eastern region judges
- Josephine Sukkar, Principal and Co-Owner, Buildcorp (Chair of Judges)
Josephine Sukkar is Principal and Co-Owner of Buildcorp, which was established in 1990, with a turnover of $500 million. She is currently a director of Opera Australia, the Centenary Institute, the Australian Rugby Foundation and the Sydney University Football Club Foundation, and is Chair of the Buildcorp Foundation.
She has previously been a director of The Trust Company and the YWCA NSW, where she served as Co-President. In 2015 Mrs Sukkar conducted a governance review of NSW Rugby Union and the Waratahs Rugby. She serves on the Nominations Committee of the Australian Rugby Union and is President of Australian Women’s Rugby.
Through Buildcorp she has been a major sponsor of men’s and women’s rugby for over 25 years. She is Chair of the Salvation Army Doorknock Appeal for the Sydney East Area and through the Buildcorp Foundation has been a major donor to Lifeline.
Having trained as a high school science teacher, she is passionate about diversity in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). She serves on the Property Council’s Diversity Committee and is an active member of Chief Executive Women.
- Melinda Cruz, Founder, Miracle Babies
Melinda Cruz is the Founder and a Board Director of Miracle Babies Foundation; Australia’s leading organisation supporting premature and sick newborns, their families and the hospitals caring for them.
The incredible difference Melinda has made to thousands of families and her impact as a successful leader has seen her win numerous awards including being named the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year, 2011 National Social entrepreneur. In 2013, she was inducted into the Australian Business Women's Hall of Fame and was a finalist in the 2015 NSW Premier’s Award.
Melinda is a highly-regarded consumer expert to medical professionals and in 2012 was awarded an Honorary Research Associate by the University of Sydney. She was the first consumer to be invited as an Associate Investigator on a neonatal trial and in 2017 was part of an award-winning global trial improving the lives of millions of premature newborns.
Melinda is a published author, a highly sought after international speaker and is a regular on radio and TV.
- Michael Malone, Non-Executive Director, Seven West Media Ltd
Michael founded iiNet in 1993 and continued as CEO until 2014 as the company grew from the garage into a major telecommunications provider listed on the ASX with revenues of over a billion dollars.
Michael was a founding director and deputy chairman of Autism West, which developed out of FOCAS, an organisation with a long history of assisting families who are familiar with ASD. He was the founding Chairman of the .au Domain Administration (auDA) and has served on the Commonwealth Consumer Affairs Advisory Council, the Western Australian State Training Board, and SciTech, WA’s leading centre for the promotion of STEM for children (and enthusiastic adults!).
Michael has been recognised with a raft of community and industry awards including the 2012 Australian EY Entrepreneur Of The Year; the Telsoc Charles Todd Medal; the 40 under 40 First Among Equals; the Comms Alliance Communication Ambassador, and the Australian Customer Service CEO of the Year. He was also a finalist for the WA Citizen of the Year.
Michael presently sits on the board of various public companies including the Australian National Broadband Network (nbnco), Seven West Media (ASX:SWM), SpeedCast (ASX:SDA), Dreamscape (ASX:DN8) and Superloop (ASX:SLC). He is also the founder and current Chairman of Diamond Cyber, a cyber security advisory business, and sits on the Advisory board of Market Eye, which is focused on investor relations.
- Andrew Vesey, CEO, Managing Director and Board Member, AGL
Andrew (Andy) Vesey has over 30 years’ experience in the energy industry including strategic and commercial leadership of large energy organisations, and working in complex regulatory and political environments. His experience extends across the energy supply chain, including power development, generation, distribution and retail businesses.
He was COO, Global Utilities for AES in 20 countries, led the Utility Finance and Regulatory Advisory Practice at FTI Consulting Inc., a Partner in the Energy, Chemicals and Utilities Practice of Ernst & Young LLP, and CEO and Managing Director of Citipower Pty Ltd in Melbourne. Andy has served as AGL Energy Limited’s Managing Director and CEO since 12 February 2015.
In October 2016, the Climate Alliance recognised Andy’s leadership in addressing climate change opportunities and risks by awarding him with the Business Leader of the Year 2016 award.
In 2017, Andy was selected to participate as a mentor in the Westpac Businesses of Tomorrow programme.
- Mark Wilson, Partner, Archer Capital
Mark Wilson is a Partner at Archer Capital, one of Australia’s leading mid-market private equity firms. The firm is currently managing its fifth fund of $1.2 billion.
Prior to joining Archer, Mark was a founding Partner of Fisher Capital Partners, an Australian based private equity investor focused on Australian small to mid-market companies. He has also held the position of Managing Director and Head of Private Equity at Goldman Sachs Australia & Partners, responsible for the private equity activities of the firm in Australia and New Zealand, and Co-Head of the Principal Investment Area (PIA).
Prior to Goldman Sachs, he was involved in private equity at both Rand Merchant Bank and Macquarie Bank. Before entering private equity, Mark was in the Equity Markets division of Macquarie Bank and in Macquarie’s central financial risk management division.
Mark is the Chairman of Aspire2 Group, one of New Zealand’s largest private vocational education providers and Chairman of Autopact, a leading Australian auto dealership group. Mark is also a Director of Supercars and a member of the Archer Capital Investment Committee.