UWA DEFENCE AND SECURITY INSTITUTE
MASTERCLASS SERIES AUKUS: PILLAR I
The UWA Defence and Security Institute and partners have designed this essential course for those seeking to gain a greater understanding of AUKUS Pillar I (nuclear powered submarines) and the impacts for Western Australia and beyond.
Who should attend?
This 2-day Masterclass has been designed for those who need to understand the impact and opportunities created by Australia’s acquisition of nuclear powered submarines, including employees
of Defence, defence (and related) industry, national, state/territory and local government, education and training institutions, and workforce agencies.
Why will this course benefit you?
The presenters will be leading Australian and international policymakers, experts and practitioners, from Defence, government, industry and universities.
Upon completion of the course participants will understand:
- The role of government and industry in creating and supporting the national nuclear-powered submarine ecosystem, including workforce development needs and plans; safety and security, social licence and community benefits, and our nuclear stewardship responsibilities and non-proliferation obligations.
- Critical issues and supply chains, what the challenges and opportunities are for WA industry and state/local government, how government interventions can help, and how this applies to WA.
- The regional security dynamics and national security drivers of the AUKUS enhanced technology sharing partnership and in particular Pillar I (acquisition of nuclear powered submarines).
- The response to and implications of the Defence Strategic Review, with a direct focus on those that relate to the AUKUS partnership Pillar I.
- How nuclear propulsion works as differentiated from currently utilised (diesel) submarine propulsion
- Acquisition processes and advantages of nuclear submarines.
This 2-day course, comprising approximately 13 hours of content delivery from national and international experts, may be suitable for attendees looking to claim Continuous Professional Development (CPD) credit with their professional member body such as Engineers Australia (EA), The Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia (CAANZ), CPA Australia, Psychology Board of Australia (PsyBA), or other relevant bodies. A certificate of participation can be issued for these purposes; please indicate during the registration process if a certificate is required.
This is an in-person event only and will not be livestreamed.
Please note that in order to receive a certificate of participation you will need to check in with us at the start and end of each day. Please also note that award of credit will be subject to justification according to your individual learning needs and the requirements of your particular professional body and we are unable to guarantee approval upon submission of this certificate to claim credit.
Keynote speakers and panellists
Confirmed speakers and panellists* —
*listed in alphabetical order by surname.
Carol Adams OAM
Mayor, City of Kwinana
Carol has been a councillor for years, served as Deputy Mayor from 2005 to was elected first female Mayor in May 2006, a position she has held for over 17 years.
Carol holds a law degree and was practicing in most jurisdictions until July 2011 when she transitioned to the role of full time Mayor.…[read more]
Carol is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, a Rotary Paul Harris Fellow and awarded an Order of Australia Medal June 2019 for her service to the economic development of Kwinana and the wider Community of Perth via her participation in various boards and committees.
Carol is a State Councillor on the WA Local Government Association and current Chairperson of the Perth South Metropolitan Alliance, representing six local government authorities in the south metropolitan region of Perth. Carol has a keen interest in the economic development of Kwinana
Dr Miles Apperley
Group Executive Nuclear Safety, Security and Stewardship, Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation
As Group Executive Nuclear Safety, Security and Stewardship, Miles has responsibility for all nuclear safety, security and safeguards operations at ANSTO as well as coordination of all nuclear security science capabilities that support the Department of Defence and other national security agencies. …[read more]He leads ANSTO’s engagement with the Australian Submarine Agency to support the establishment of the nuclear-powered submarine enterprise. Miles joined ANSTO in 2016 with initial responsibility for the organisation’s entire portfolio of Landmark and National Research Infrastructure. He has been planning, operating and leading collaborations between government, industry and universities for more than thirty years.
Peta Arbuckle MVO
Executive Director, Defence West
Peta Arbuckle was recently appointed Executive Director Defence West, a career public servant serving the Commonwealth and Western Australian governments over 25 years.
Peta’s career includes the Department of Defence – International Policy Division and the Defence Intelligence Organisation. …[read more]Her overseas assignments included missions to Bougainville, Cambodia and a posting to Papua New Guinea as First Secretary Defence, the Department of Education – postings to Taiwan and Japan (with responsibility for the Republic of Korea).
Peta’s experience includes 10 years at the Department of Premier and Cabinet, including Deputy Chief of Staff in a ministerial office. Peta assumed the role of State Director Royal Visit during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in 2011 and was made a Member of the Royal Victorian Order by Her Majesty, The Late Queen.
Peta has also served on various federal government taskforces.
She holds a Bachelor of Economics and Politics (Honours) degree from Monash University and a Masters of Strategic Studies and International Relations from the Australian National University.
The Honourable Kim Beazley AC
Former Deputy Prime Minister and leader of the Labor Party; former Ambassador of Australia to the United States; 33rd Governor of Western Australia
The Honourable Kim Beazley AC was the 33rd Governor of Western Australia (2018-2022).
Prior to being installed as Governor on the 1st May 2018, Mr Beazley had dedicated almost three decades to a career in Federal Parliament, representing the WA seats of Brand and Swan.
Rear Admiral Matthew Buckley, CSC, RAN
Head, Nuclear Submarine Capability
Matt Buckley was born in February 1972 in Sydney Australia, and spent his school years growing up on the NSW South Coast. He joined the Royal Australian Navy in Jan 1990 and graduated from the Australian Defence Force Academy in December 1992. As a Junior Maritime Warfare Officer he first served in Surface Combatants before specialising as a Submariner in 1996. …[read more]Matt completed his Junior Officer Postings serving in Oberon class submarines home ported in Sydney, and later on exchange with the Royal Canadian Navy as a Submarine Navigator based in Halifax Nova Scotia. Matt returned to Australia in 2001, completing the Submarine Warfare Officers course, receiving the Sword of Excellence for Warfare Skills, this was followed by a posting to HMAS Farncomb
As a Lieutenant Commander, Matt served as the commissioning Operations Officer, and later as Executive Officer, of HMAS Rankin. Matt completed the Netherlands Submarine Command Course (Perisher) and the United States Navy Submarine Command Course in 2006. He was selected for Command of HMAS Collins, which he undertook on promotion to Commander throughout 2007 and 2008. Matt served as Commander Sea Training Submarines for eighteen months before commencing his tenure as Executive Officer of the Navy’s Maritime Warfare Training Establishment HMAS Watson from July 2010 to September 2012. Matt’s sea service was extensively in the Western Pacific, fostering a deep interest in the region.
Promoted to Captain in October 2012, Matt served as Director Submarine Capability in Navy HQ for two years, before assuming Command of the Australian Submarine Force in September 2014. He completed this very rewarding appointment in November 2016. Matt completed the Defence and Strategic Studies Course in 2017, receiving the Secretary – Chief of Defence Force Award. He was appointed as the Director General Maritime Operations in December 2017 on promotion to Commodore, where he served for two years in HQ Joint Operations Command. In December 2020 Matt was offered a different opportunity with appointment as Director General Navy People where he served until August 2021. Matt was selected as the Head of Nuclear-Powered Submarine Capability in September 2021 on promotion to Rear Admiral. With the launch of the Australian Submarine Agency on 01 July 2023, Matt became the Head of Nuclear Submarine Capability.
Matt Buckley was awarded the Conspicuous Service Cross in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in June 2015 for his contribution to the Submarine Capability.
He has been awarded a Bachelor of Arts and a Masters of Strategy and Policy from the University of New South Wales, and a Masters of International Relations from Deakin University.
Matt is married to Ingrid and they are blessed with three sons, Xavier, Joel and Marcus. Matt maintains a keen interest in global affairs and enjoys casual BBQ’s with family and friends. He is an enthusiastic participant in a range of outdoor adventure sports and activities, including trail running, mountain biking and surfing.
Associate Professor Paul K. Bergey
Director, Centre of Business Analytics, The University of Western Australia Business School
Paul K. Bergey is Associate Professor and Director for the Centre of Business Analytics at the University of Western Australia Business School. He earned a Ph.D. in Management Science and Information Technology from Virginia Tech, MBA from the College of William and Mary and Bachelor of Science in Marine Engineering from the United States Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point.…[read more] Dr. Dr. Bergey has extensive industry experience as a project engineer at Newport News Shipbuilding for new construction nuclear power attack submarines built for the US Navy. He is also the past Editor-in-Chief of IEEE Engineering Management Review.
Director, Western Australian Defence Science Centre (DSC)
Michele Clement is the Director of the Western Australian Defence Science Centre (DSC) within the Department of Jobs, Tourism, Science and Innovation. The DSC aims to build strong collaborations across Defence, universities and industry, facilitating defence-relevant research and technology connections that supports defence and national security outcomes. …[read more]
It supports the commercialisation of defence-related research and cultivates a competitive local defence industry that will diversify and strengthen the State’s economy and create new jobs.
Prior to this Michele was the Director Innovative Science, in the Department of Commerce; supporting research and innovation and promoting science and technology as major drivers of Western Australian economic, social and environmental growth.
Michele spent nine years working for the Commonwealth in the then Department of Innovation, Industry, Science, Research and Territory Education undertaking both program delivery and policy roles and also managed the Department’s budget process involving the securing of federal funding for a number of new programs and initiatives.
Michele has a background in banking and finance, particularly investment in small technology and bio-technology businesses. Michele holds a Masters in Business Administration.
Noongar Elder, Welcome to Country
Uncle Neville Collard is a highly respected and locally well-known Nyungar Elder, self-employee since 2012, providing cross-cultural training programs to mining companies and other businesses, advocating for Nyungar values in cultural tourism, environmental rehabilitation and schools education programs. Neville is a widely sought ceremonial leader and is noted for his storytelling gifts and generosity in building bridges to reconciliation. …[read more]
Neville is a direct descendant of William Thomas Bennell (Yelakitj) (1908-1989). Hs other teachers include Bill Winmar, Harry Nannup, late Dennis Davey One Arm Point, second father late Mr Stewart and Rogie Davey (Warburton Ranges). Neville traces his heritage back to Yellagonga, Nyungar leader at the time of colonisation. Besides his family links throughout Whadjuk country, Neville has strong Ballardong connections. As a story custodian and Noongar community leader, he works in partnership with Rottnest Island Board on cultural matters and Whadjuk burial sites redevelopment; he was previously responsible for developing the Noongar Outreach Service (Nyoongar Patrol).
As the custodian of dreamtime stories told to him by his Elders, he is a tireless advocate of place interpretation through story-telling, providing tourism and heritage culture services in all facets of Nyungar culture (primary, high school, adults) and in a wide range of locations, including Rottnest, Fremantle, Herdsman Lake, Point Walter, Fremantle, Scarborough, Joondalup, Wanneroo, Perth, Lake Monger, Swan River Upper Swan, Mandurah and a number of mining companies and government agencies.
In 2004 he established the Nyungar Know How program, which has been presented in schools all over metropolitan area. A particular achievement has been his award-winning cultural programs at Bold Park Community School and the Herdsman Wildlife Centre in Wembley. In 2008 he established the Yelakitj Moort Nyungar Association with a mission to ‘To develop a suite of services that will benefit the indigenous community and enhance mutually beneficial partnerships with other Australians, regional communities, business, government and non-government agencies.’
British Deputy High Commissioner, Canberra
Nick took up his appointment as British Deputy High Commissioner to Australia in January 2021. Nick has worked in UK Civil Service since 2002, working in a variety of roles across the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, the Home Office, the Cabinet Office, HM Revenue & Customs and UK Border Agency. …[read more]He has served overseas for the British Government in Accra and Delhi – as well as now in Canberra. Prior to the Civil Service, Nick began his professional career in investment banking. Nick is originally from London and has an MA in International Relations and an MSc in Development Studies.
Director of the Western Australia State Office, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Sally Dawkins commenced as Director in January 2022. In this role Sally leads the Department’s engagement with its diverse stakeholders in Western Australia, including government, business, academia and the community. Sally has served overseas with the Department in Geneva (United Nations), Paris, West Africa and most recently in Ankara, as Deputy Head of Mission at the Australian Embassy in Turkey. …[read more]
In Canberra, Sally has worked on a number of initiatives to support Australian businesses overseas, including the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement, the Africa Down Under mining conference, and the Shanghai World Trade Expo. She has also worked as an Adviser to the Minister for International Development and the Pacific.
In 2017-19, Sally managed government relations and social investment for Newcrest Mining in Papua New Guinea, based in Port Moresby. In this role she sat as a Director of Newcrest’s subsidiary corporations, and represented Newcrest at the PNG Chamber of Mines & Petroleum.
Sally graduated with Honours in Bachelors of Laws and Arts from the University of Western Australia, and is an admitted solicitor. She speaks fluent French.
Deputy Director General Industry, Science and Innovation, Department of Jobs Tourism Science and Innovation
Linda Dawson is a senior executive with more than 25 years’ experience working in large Australian and multinational organisations across the resources and utilities sectors. Over Linda’s career she has led corporate services, community development, human resources, health safety and environment, corporate affairs and operational functions.…[read more]Linda currently works for the Department of Jobs Tourism Science and Innovation in the Western Australian Government, as Deputy Director General Industry Science Innovation.
Linda has a strong belief in equality and respect for all in society, learning from our First Nations people, empowering women and giving back to the community. She has been a Chair of the MCA Indigenous Community of Practice, mentor with WIMWA and a past Chair of the CMEWA Pilbara Regional Council.
Linda is currently a Board Member of Workpower, Vice Chairperson of Midland Women’s Health Care Place and a Member of the Sir Charles Gardiner and Osborne Park Hospital Human Research Ethics Committee.
She holds a Masters of Education and Bachelor of Physical Education from the University of Western Australia, is a Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, Certified Professional of the Australian Human Resource Institute and Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management.
Technology Director, L3Harris Integrated Mission Systems Australia (IMSA)
As a proud Western Australian, Scott Elson, is currently the Technology Director for L3Harris Integrated Mission Systems Australia, a subsidiary of L3Harris Technologies, Inc. based in Perth, Australia. Scott started with Nautronix in the late early 2000’s which has is now IMSA.…[read more]
Current duties include the strategy and sovereign development of maritime research and development projects which include underwater acoustic communications, coastal security monitoring software and secure communications. Recent focus has been on technology transfer within L3Harris under AUKUS and alignment with Australian projects related to submarine, autonomy and maritime surveillance.
Dr. Richard Freer, OBE
Managing Director, Bechtel Public Infrastructure Australia
Richard graduated from Oxford University with an MA in Chemistry (1989) and a PhD in Semiconductor Physics (1994).
Richard spent 25 years working for the UK Defence Department. Highlights included writing the 2006 White Paper on renewing the UK nuclear deterrent, operational tours in Bosnia and Afghanistan and 3 years as the Prime Minister’s defence/foreign policy advisor.…[read more]
Richard joined Bechtel in 2013, and has worked on the Hanford Waste Treatment Plant, at Sellafield, and in Canberra supporting implementation of the First Principles Review. He managed Bechtel’s international nuclear and defence business and spent 3 years in Taiwan as Asia-Pacific Regional President. In March 2023 he moved to Sydney, managing Bechtel’s Public Infrastructure business in Australia, focused on public transport and defence.
Chief Security Officer and Director, Defence & Space, Curtin University
‘Gary is the first Chief Security Officer (CSO), and Director for Defence & Space, appointed at Curtin University. This role is charged with building a resilient University that drives sustainable world-class science and innovation partnerships, including the development of nationally significant sovereign capability for Australia. …[read more]This includes management of Foreign Risk, the Defence Industry Security Program (DISP), as well as our growing Defence and Space portfolio in partnership with our government and industry stakeholders.
Prior to this, Gary held a number executive positions across start-ups and large global systems integrators including leading the development of Cisco’s new markets in cyber security, digital media, defence, satellite & space systems, and emergency communications. Prior to this he was in the RAAF where he led high-value capability development programs in aerospace and C4I.‘
Mayor, City of Rockingham
Deb is passionate about the City of Rockingham. She was elected in May 2005 as a Councillor, contributing in the role as Deputy Mayor for eight years before becoming the City’s first popularly elected Mayor in 2021. Professionally, her career has focused on education, working for Murdoch University from 1978 to 2016. …[read more]
She has been a commissioner on the WA Grants Commission, Vice Chair of the Library Board of Western Australia, a Deputy State Councillor and Vice Chair Governing Council South Metro College of TAFE. Deb was recognised at the Local Government Honours Awards in 2017, receiving the Long and Loyal Service Award.
Director General, Department of Training and Workforce Development
Karen Ho was appointed to the role of Director General at the Department of Training and Workforce Development in December 2021, after holding Executive Director roles in both Policy, Planning and Innovation and Service Delivery.…[read more]
Karen has more than 30 years of public sector experience in a range of portfolio areas including vocational education and training, education and justice. She has expertise in labour market and educational research, program and policy evaluation, strategic policy and planning, legislative reform and service delivery. Karen graduated from the University of Western Australia with a Bachelor of Science (First Class Honours in Psychology) and completed a Graduate Certificate in Management from Curtin University.
Mayor, City of Cockburn
Logan was popularly elected as mayor at the March 2009 local government extraordinary election and again in October 2009, 2013, 2017 and 2021. He is passionate about Cockburn, it’s people, history, cultural diversity and its future as a place where dreams and aspirations can be realised.…[read more]
Logan is a Justice of the Peace, Western Australia Local Government Association Board member, Fellow of the Australian College of Health Service Managers, has proven executive level experience, represented Industry and small business at state and national levels and previously served nine years as a councillor (1990 to 1999).
CDRE Ivan Ingham, AM, RAN
Senior Officer, Western Australia
Starting his seagoing career in the Royal Navy in 1980, Commodore Ingham is a graduate of Britannia Royal Naval College and the Royal Naval College, Greenwich. Serving in every class of warship from Patrol Vessel to an Aircraft Carrier, he experienced repeated operational deployments to the South Atlantic, …[read more]Mediterranean, Adriatic, Middle East and Asia during a twenty-year RN career prior to transferring to the Royal Australian Navy in 2001.
Experiencing a similarly lengthy seagoing career in the Royal Australian Navy, he served in the Gulf during the Iraq War before commanding HMA Ships Townsville, Toowoomba and Perth, during which he conducted Border Protection and Counter-Terrorism and
Counter-Piracy operations which also involved the first operational deployment and employment of the RAN’s ASMD and MH60R helicopter capabilities in the Middle East.
Since promotion to Commodore he has fulfilled the roles of Commodore Warfare, Commodore Flotillas, Deputy Commander of Australia’s Deployable Joint Force Headquarters and
Director General Joint Capability & Operational Futures at Headquarters Joint Operations Command (HQJOC).
Commodore Ingham holds a Masters of Arts in International Relations (Salve Regina) and is also a graduate of the senior command program of US Naval War College. As a Star-Ranked Officer he has undergone professional development through the Australian Defence Force’s Senior Leadership study programs. He was awarded a Commendation for Distinguished Service in warlike operations (2003) and was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in 2011.
Commodore Ingham assumed the role of Senior Officer Western Australia, representing the Chief of Defence Force in all matters of strategic interest to the Department, in November 2021.
The Honourable David Johnston
Chair, UWA Defence and Security Institute
The Honourable David Johnston was educated in Perth in Western Australia, David attended Wesley College from 1967–1973 and then graduated from The University of Western Australia in 1981 with the law degrees B.Juris and LLB. David was elected to the Australian Parliament as a Senator for Western Australia in 2001 and served in that role for 15 years.
The Honourable Matt Keogh MP
Minister for Veteran’s Affairs, Minister for Defence Personnel, Member for Burt
The Hon. Matt Keogh MP is Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Personnel and the Federal Member for Burt. Matt was first elected to the House of Representatives for Burt, Western Australia in 2016.
In Opposition, Matt served as Shadow Minister for Defence Industry, WA Resources and Assisting for Small Business.…[read more]
Prior to taking on his portfolio responsibilities, Matt served on a wide range of committees including the House of Representatives standing committees on Economics, Agriculture and Water Resources, and the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Corporations and Financial Services. “change the story” in the area.
Born and raised in Kelmscott, Matt attended school in Armadale and went on to study law at the University of Notre Dame Australia in Fremantle and London.
Before entering Parliament, Matt’s legal career started in a local Kelmscott firm before working as a Federal Prosecutor focusing on corporate crime. Matt then joined the litigation practice of a leading international law firm in Perth specialising in financial services regulatory, anti-bribery and corruption work.
Throughout his legal career Matt worked alongside various organisations to benefit the community including as Chairperson of local family and domestic violence service, Starick, President of the Law Society of Western Australia, a Director of the Law Council of Australia and Chairperson of Law Access WA..
Dr Troy Lee-Brown
Research Fellow, UWA Defence and Security Institute
Troy Lee-Brown is a researcher in regional security, maritime security and international relations with a focus on the Indo-Pacific. He is currently the editor of the ‘Black Swan Strategy Paper’ and the project manager for ‘Blue Security’, a joint DSI-La Trobe Asia-Griffith Asia Institute-UNSW project which focuses on issues of maritime security in the Indo-Pacific.…[read more]Troy’s PhD research was undertaken at the University of Western Australia and his dissertation titled ‘The Rise and Strategic Significance of the Indo-Pacific’ analysed the emergence and significance of the new regional construct.
Before joining UWA, Troy completed a MA in International Affairs at Murdoch University’s Sir Walter Murdoch School of Public Policy and International Affairs in 2014, with a thesis examining the Senkaku-Diaoyu Islands dispute between Japan and China. Troy has authored several journal papers with a focus on security issues in the Indo-Pacific, regionalism and maritime security. His research interests include the Indo-Pacific, India, Japan, maritime security, regionalism and climate change.
Theme Leader Securing Digital Futures and Director, Defence Research and Engagement, Edith Cowan University
Tony Marceddo leads the strategy, growth and development for ECU digital research theme called Securing Digital Futures (SDF). SDF is an interdisciplinary research approach that builds on ECU’s existing strengths in Cyber-Security, Artificial Intelligence, Autonomous Systems, Information warfare, Digital Citizenship and Human Behaviours.…[read more] Tony is also the Director for Defence Research and Engagement for the university and Theme Leader within the Cyber Security Cooperative Research Centre for Network Forensics and Responses to Emerging Technologies.
Dr Todd Mansell
First Assistant Director General, Technical, Australian Submarine Agency
Dr Mansell is an experienced senior executive within the Australian Department of Defence where he is responsible for establishing ASA as an authorised submarine engineering organisation, as well as developing and applying the science, technology and innovation base Australia requires to be a safe and effective independent owner/operator of our nuclear-powered submarine capability.…[read more]
He holds a PhD in Artificial Intelligence from the University of Melbourne and is a graduate of the Harvard Business School, Advanced Management Program (AMP188). With over 30 years experience in submarine research, development, acquisition and operations analysis, Dr Mansell’s contribution to submarines has been recognised with the Minister for Defence, Award for Scientific Achievement.
Prior to his current role, Dr Mansell was posted into The Boeing Company (USA) where he worked alongside the Chief Engineer on engineering realignment, innovation supply chain and R&D transformation.
Dr Mansell has held previous roles across Defence and the public service including leading a national innovation and science taskforce, Acting Chief Defence Scientist, Chief Science Strategy and Program Division, Contestability Division and the National Naval Ship Building Taskforce. He also has experience leading Defence’s Science & Technology programs supporting Air Force, Navy, and the Joint Force Domain.
Assistant Secretary, Strategic Policy and Guidance
Alanna Mackay is Assistant Secretary Strategic Policy and Guidance at the Department of Defence. She has extensive experience in Australian national security policy, with previous roles in Defence, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (including a diplomatic posting to New Zealand), and, prior to her current appointment, …[read more] the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, where she served as Senior Adviser for Defence Capability.
Alanna holds a Masters’ degree in International Relations from the London School of Economics and a Bachelor of Arts in History and Government from the University of Sydney. She is married with two children.
Head of Strategy and Government Relations, Luerssen Australia
Matt is the Head of Strategy and Government Relations for Luerssen Australia. Prior to joining Luerssen Australia, he was the inaugural Executive Director of Defence West. He is an Australian Army Afghanistan veteran and a Walkley Award winner. Matt deployed to Afghanistan as a public affairs officer in 2009 and East Timor in 2007.
Principal consultant, ALARP Solutions
Grant Murray is ALARP Solutions’ Nuclear Powered Submarine education lead for organisations and agencies that will be affected under AUKUS Pillar 1.
A former serving Royal Navy Submarine Officer, he served as a Warfare Officer in SSNs during North Atlantic and Arctic Ocean operations. …[read more] Engineering sea assignments followed in the SSBN Force conducting deterrent patrols and SSNs, including the conduct of active strike operations and subsequently the RN Sea Training organisation.
Assignments ashore included Submarine training delivery, Astute Combat System acquisition, the Dreadnought SSBN Concept Phase, Defence Nuclear Enterprise Training & Education and Officer Commanding UK Tomahawk Operations.
Grant was assigned by the RN to the Collins Program Exchange Officer position, as Combat System Sustainment Manager prior to joining local Industry, continuing to support the Collins Enterprise, and more recently the ANZAC Class.
U.S. Consul General, Western Australia
Siriana Kvalvik Nair is a career Foreign Service Officer with the U.S. Department of State, currently serving as the Deputy Political Counselor at U.S. Mission Brazil. Prior to her arrival in Brasilia, Ms. Nair served as the Acting Political Counselor at the U.S. Mission in Jakarta, Indonesia, during a time of significant political transition. …[read more]As the Director of the United States’ International Narcotics and Law Enforcement regional office for North Africa (based in Rabat, Morocco), she established and managed multi-million dollar programs in law enforcement, judicial reform, and border security. She has served previous assignments with the Department of State in India, the Philippines, and Washington, D.C.
Prior to joining the State Department, Ms. Nair served as an English teaching fellow in Nanjing, China. She has a Master’s degree in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, and degrees in Political Science and Biology from Wellesley College. She is married to Jai Nair, a fellow Foreign Service Officer, and they have four children.
The Hon. Paul Papalia CSC MLA
Minister for Police; Corrective Services; Defence Industry; Veterans Issues
Paul was born in Bunbury and raised in the small south west town of Burekup. He entered the Royal Australian Navy in 1978 and served in the military for 26 years eventually qualifying as a Navy Clearance Diver, serving in the counter terrorist squadron of the Special Air Service Regiment and deployed on operations to Iraq on two occasions.…[read more]
In the course of his military career, Paul commanded a Clearance Diving Team, a navy patrol boat and the Navy’s submarine escape and rescue service. He was awarded the Conspicuous Service Cross and Commendations from both the Land and Maritime Commanders before leaving the service in early 2004.
Paul and his wife Gillian were self-employed in small business when he was approached to consider pre-selection for WA Labor in the lead up to the Peel by-election in late 2006. Paul was elected to the seat of Peel in February 2007, then elected to the new seat of Warnbro in September 2008 and re-elected to that seat in 2013 and 2017. Paul served in the Shadow Ministry after WA Labor lost office in 2008 as Shadow Minister for Tourism, Corrective Services and Defence Issues.
Professor Gia Parish
Director, UWA Defence and Security Institute
Giacinta (Gia) Parish is Associate Dean, Research, and Professor in the School of Engineering, at The University of Western Australia. She joined UWA in 2001 as an Australian Postdoctoral Fellow after completing a PhD at the University of California, Santa Barbara as a Fulbright Scholar.
President, Australian Industry and Defence Network WA (AIDN WA)
Brett is the Industry Engagement Manager at Austal and in addition to his primary role is the President, Australian Industry and Defence Network WA (AIDN WA). Brett has an extensive career in Government Relations and Industry Engagement, which spans more than 20 years across various sectors, and his passion is around the creation of mutual respect and benefits for both the company and contractor. …[read more]He takes great pride in being able to apply his comprehensive industry insights to negotiate the best outcome for all stakeholders.Since joining Maritime Defence Industry in August 2016, Brett plays a vital role in the education, attraction, engagement and development of relationships in the maritime sector. Encompassing a strong background in procurement and contract negotiation, demonstrated goal-oriented achievement with proven leadership skills and strong analytical capabilities. Strategic thinker capable of identifying and actively rectifying problems, aligning priorities and getting the job done through development, direction and progression of personnel and implementation of quality improvement processes, practices and policies at a local, national and international level.
Professor David Parry
Professor and Dean, School of IT, Murdoch University
Dave Parry is a Professor and Dean of the School of IT at Murdoch University. As Dean he leads a team of 25 Academic staff from all over the world who teach around 1000 students in Perth and overseas. Previously, he worked in the UK and New Zealand in health IT development. …[read more]His research interests include the use of Artificial Intelligence to recognise and understand behaviour from sensor data, user interface design, and information retrieval. He is currently involved in a number of commercially-focussed research and development collaborations with partners in industry and the health sector.
Commodore Tom Phillips
Commander, Submarine Force
Commodore Tom Phillips hails from Brisbane, Queensland and joined the Royal Australian Navy in 1990 as a Maritime Warfare Officer.
Tom is a graduate of the Australian Defence Force Academy receiving a Bachelor of Science in Oceanography. …[read more] On completion of Maritime Warfare Officer Training, Tom served in a number of ships and submarines, both Australian and foreign, and has enjoyed one posting to the United Kingdom with the Royal Navy. In preparation for command, Tom undertook the Netherlands Submarine Command Course ‘Perisher’ in 2006.
Tom was promoted to the rank of Commander in 2008 and subsequently had the honour of taking command of HMA Submarines Farncomb and later Collins. Post command, Tom was appointed Commander Sea Training – Submarines. During this period, Tom read for his Masters in Project Management at UNSW and was later posted to the Office of the Chief of the Defence Force as the Deputy Chief of Staff.
In 2016, Tom was promoted to Captain and posted to Navy Headquarters as Director Navy Capability Plans. On completion Tom undertook the Defence Strategic Studies Course at the Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies. This was followed by a posting to Headquarters Joint Operations Command as Director of Current Operations.
He was appointed Director General Submarines and promoted to Commodore in October 2020. Tom assumed the appointment of Commander Submarine Force in June 2023.
Dr Maria Rost Rublee
Associate Professor of International Relations, Monash University
Maria Rost Rublee is an Associate Professor of International Relations at Monash University, with expertise in international security, including nuclear politics, maritime security, and diversity in security studies. She is also President of Women in International Security-Australia.…[read more]Her current nuclear-related projects include analysis of the examination of Australia’s nuclear futures, public opinion and nuclear politics, and investigation into the social construction of nuclear energy.
Rublee has received grants from the United States Institute of Peace, the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Australian Department of Defence, the Canadian Department of Defence, the International Studies Association (ISA), the Asia:NZ Foundation, and the Japan Foundation. Her work has been published in a variety of international journals, including Security Studies, Contemporary Security Policy, International Studies Review, Comparative Political Studies, and the Nonproliferation Review. Rublee’s book, Nonproliferation Norms: Why States Choose Nuclear Restraint, received the Alexander George Book Award for best book in political psychology, awarded by the International Society for Political Psychology. She is past Chair of the International Security Studies Section of ISA, an editorial board member of International Affairs, Contemporary Security Policy and the Nonproliferation Review, and a former editor of International Studies Perspectives.
Rear Admiral Richard Seif
Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet
Rear Adm. Seif is a native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is a 1992 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy with a Bachelor of Science in Marine Engineering. He also holds a master’s degree in Business Administration from the College of William and Mary’s Mason School of Business. At sea, he has served aboard five nuclear fast-attack submarines. …[read more]He served as a junior officer aboard USS Newport News (SSN 750), engineer officer and combat systems officer aboard USS Oklahoma City (SSN 723), and executive officer aboard USS Houston (SSN 713). He commanded USS Buffalo (SSN 715), homeported in Guam, from April 2010 to February 2013. During this tour, he conducted extensive operations in the Western Pacific, and the boat was awarded the Navy Unit Commendation, the Meritorious Unit Commendation, two Battle Efficiency awards, and the Arleigh Burke Fleet Trophy. He also commanded USS Jacksonville (SSN 699), bcompleting a U.S. 5th and 7th Fleet deployment, and also served as commodore, Submarine Squadron One and chief of staff to Commander Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet. Ashore, Rear Admiral Seif has served as the military assistant to the Assistant Secretary for Defense for Strategy, Plans, and Capabilities; deputy chief of staff for Operations for Submarine Group Seven/Task Force 74 in Yokosuka, Japan; the Navy’s national director of Submarine and Nuclear Power Recruiting; board member and executive officer of the Fleet Forces Command Nuclear Propulsion Examining Board; and flag aide to Commander Submarine Force, U.S Atlantic Fleet/Submarine Allied Command Atlantic.
Prior to his assignment as Commander, Submarine Forces, U.S. Pacific Fleet he served as Commander, Submarine Group Seven/Task Force 54/Task Force 74. His personal decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal (two awards), Legion of Merit (five awards), Meritorious Service Medal (four awards), Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (five awards), and Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (three awards). He has served with crews that have earned seven Battle Efficiency awards, two Arleigh Burke Fleet Trophies, and various unit and campaign awards.
Captain Richard Small
UK Liaison Officer, Australian Submarine Agency
Captain Rich Small is the UK Liaison Officer to the Australian Submarine Agency and is responsible for ensuring trilateral equities are considered within the AUKUS programme.…[read more]
A career Warfare Submariner, he has served in nuclear powered submarines since 1998 conducting a range of operations, exercises and capability development. He has conducted SSBN deterrent patrols as the Executive and Commanding Officer and was the Submarine Command specialist in the Royal Navy’s Sea Training organisation. Rich was the Submarine Operations Officer in the Maritime Operations Center and has undertaken assignments in the United States as well as roles in the UK Ministry of Defence. He was most recently the Operations Head for the Director of Strategy and Policy in the Naval Staff.
Program Leader Maritime Undersea Combat & Surveillance, Australia Defence Science & Technology
Warren is the Program Leader Maritime Undersea Combat & Surveillance within the Australian Defence Science and Technology Group (DSTG). This role entails leadership and delivery of DSTG’s innovation, science and technology program supporting Australia’s submarine and broader undersea capabilities. He is also DSTG’s senior representative in WA.…[read more]In 1996, Warren joined the Australian Defence Science and Technology Organisation (as it was then) as part of a small team tasked with evaluating the sonar performance of the then new to service Collins class submarines. Since then he has had intricate and increasingly senior roles in Australian submarine innovation, science and technology programs including key international collaborative programs.
Chief Security Officer, DUG
Born and bred in Perth, Bryce joined the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) in 1999. In the RAAF, he was an F/A-18 Classic Hornet pilot, Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC), Hawk Qualified Flying Instructor (QFI), and F/A-18F Super Hornet QFI and Flight Commander. …[read more]Whilst in the RAAF he also studied externally and gained his Air Transport Pilot License (ATPL) and Graduate Certificate in Business Management. During his time in the RAAF, he was involved in safety, risk management, project management, personnel management, training and assessment, courseware and development, mentoring, maintenance testing, operational test and evaluation, and standardisation.
In 2012, Bryce left the RAAF but is still currently a Squadron Leader (SQNLDR) Fast Jet QFI in the Air Force Reserves. He went on to become a Hawk QFI for the UAE Air Force, based in Dubai, and then a Senior Supervisor in charge of a Squadron for BAE Systems, based in Saudi Arabia. In 2019 Bryce moved back to Australia and became a pilot for Alliance Airlines, flying the Fokker F100 and F70 based out of Perth.
Rear Admiral Philip Spedding, DSC AM, RAN (rtd)
Western Australian Defence Advocate
Philip Spedding assumed the role of Defence Advocate in early 2023. He provides independent advice to the Western Australian Government and promotes the State’s Defence industry capability and capacity. Philip served for 41 years in the Navy, spending more than a decade in the senior leadership group.…[read more] His final roles were to lead reviews into a possible location for an east coast submarine base and the suitability of conventional and nuclear-powered submarines to meet Australia’s future defence needs.
Running his own consultancy business since 2019, Philip also sits on the management and advisory boards of several defence focused companies.
Head of Operations Strategy, Austal Australia
Ben Wardle is Head of Operations Strategy at Austal. Austal is a global defence prime contractor and world leader in the design, construction and support of high performance defence and commercial ships. Joining Austal in 1996 as Engineering Design Coordinator, Mr Wardle achieved success as lead mechanical designer across a broad range of commercial vessel projects and programs, over ten years.…[read more]
In 2006, Mr Wardle was instrumental in the development and technology transfer of the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) program to Austal’s new shipbuilding facility in Mobile, Alabama in the United States of America.
During the start-up of the LCS Program, Mr Wardle was based in the US and helped introduce world class shipbuilding methodologies, establish local (US) defence industry contracting and a proven project management structure.
Over the past decade, Mr Wardle held a number of senior engineering and management positions at Austal Australia, including Program Manager, Shipbuilding Manager, GM Supply Chain and International Service Manager – playing an integral role in the development of the company’s product portfolio and delivery of major defence shipbuilding programs.
Mr Wardle’s current role has him supporting the development of Austal’s strategic plan and ensuring actions are appropriate to ensure the strategy is executed.
Director of Regional Engagement, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Kate Webb is currently the Director of Regional Engagement in the Defence and National Security Policy Division at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Since early 2022 Kate has – alongside Defence colleagues – managed Australia’s international engagement ahead of the AUKUS optimal pathway announcement and the Government’s response to the Defence Strategic Review. Kate joined DFAT in 2016 and has had overseas postings to Solomon Islands and Myanmar.
Director of Government Relations, Honeywell
Gemma Whiting joined Honeywell at the start of the year as the Director of Government Relations in APAC. Gemma is part of the Core Leadership Team and is responsible for managing and strengthening Honeywell’s relationships with government. She has 15 years of experience working in both Government and industry in the defence and resources sector.…[read more]Prior to joining Honeywell, Gemma was managing policy for the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (AUSIMM) where she created and launched their critical minerals strategy.
Gemma previously led Government affairs for Austal and served as a advisor to former Defence Minister, Senator the Hon David Johnston.
Gemma has a BA/LLB Hons from the University of Western Australia, Executive Education in Strategy and Disruptive from Harvard Business School and is in the final few months of her MBA from Melbourne Business School.
Program Manager Navy Programs
Bechtel Nuclear, Safety and Environmental (NS&E)
James has extensive project and program management experience of large industrial operations centered around the overhaul and repair of nuclear-powered warships. He has managed operations of 37,000 employees and an annual operating budget of $6 billion…[read more].
James’ comprehensive engineering experience spans all management levels of nuclear, mechanical, electrical, and facilities. He values the role people, culture, and organisations play in mission success, and throughout his career invested in building high preforming teams and improving leadership team dynamics.
James has managed large infrastructure projects including modernization, repair, and construction of large industrial facilities, including radiological, piers and dry docks. An advocate for applying lean methodologies to complex industrial processes, James has a track record of implementing significant process improvements and innovation. He has experience developing a range of solutions from the factory floor to complicated systemic problems at the highest levels of the organization.
James has a BS Mechanical Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, and a graduate of the Bettis Reactor Engineering School.