We’re excited to bring you a diverse range of speakers, from all industries and sectors, to share their insights and expertise around the applications of data science and AI for business. 

Adam Spencer

Triple J Presenter, Mathematician, Author

Well loved Triple J presenter, Adam Spencer as been one of Australia’s best and foremost event hosts, keynote speakers and facilitators for over two decades. His attention to detail and ability to improvise are the hallmarks for which he has been regularly invited back to many events.

Adam has shared the stage with every Australian Prime Minister since Whitlam, but he is equally adept at bringing to life the everyday stories of ordinary people who deserve acknowledgement for their achievements.

Adam’s greatest strength is his versatility. There is virtually no topic he doesn’t enjoy getting his head around and presenting. That said, given his background in mathematics, Adam is particularly strong at presenting on science, technology, digital innovation, medicine and health.


Prof Toby Walsh

Chief Scientist at UNSW.ai, Author

Toby Walsh is an ARC Laureate Fellow and Scientia Professor of AI at UNSW and CSIRO Data61. He is Chief Scientist of UNSW.AI, UNSW’s new AI Institute.

He is a strong advocate for limits to ensure AI is used to improve our lives, having spoken at the UN, and to heads of state, parliamentary bodies, company boards and many others on this topic. This advocacy has led to him being “banned indefinitely” from Russia.

He is a Fellow of the Australia Academy of Science, and was named on the international ‘Who’s Who in AI’ list of influencers. He has written three books on AI for a general audience, the most recent is ‘Machines Behaving Badly: the morality of AI’.

Lily Serna

Television Presenter, Mathematician, Data Analyst

Math whiz Lily Serna is a mathematician with an unrivalled passion for education, particularly in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) advocacy. Her passion for numbers has led her to not just a highly successful career in maths, but she’s also a sought-after presenter, media personality and author.

As an insightful and engaging presenter, Lily quite simply inspires and delights audiences with her unique perspective on numbers.

Lily is currently a data analyst at Atlassian, specialising in building mathematical and statistical models. But she is likely best known for her professional media host work on programs such as SBS’s television program ‘Letters and Numbers’ with David Astle and Richard Morecroft where she appeared as the show’s resident numbers expert.

Hon Stephen Dawson MLC

Minister for Emergency Services; Innovation and the Digital Economy; Science; Medical Research; Minister assisting the Minister for State Industry Development, Jobs and Trade.

Stephen was elected to represent the Mining & Pastoral Region at the 2013 state election. He served as Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for the Kimberley, Pilbara, Gascoyne and Goldfields-Esperance regions before being promoted to the position of Shadow Minister for Mental Health; Disability Services and Child Protection in September 2013.

Stephen has been a Chief of Staff to a number of Government Ministers in Western Australia and Victoria and immediately prior to his election to Parliament, he worked as the WA State Manager for Essential Media Communications.

Prof Peter Klinken

Chief Scientist, Western Australia

In 2014 Peter was appointed as the Chief Scientist of Western Australia, after stepping down as Executive Director of the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research (formerly the Western Australian Institute for Medical Research – WAIMR). Peter was honoured to be recognised as a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC) in 2017 for contributions to medical research and for promoting science and innovation in Western Australia.

Peter obtained his PhD in Biochemistry from The University of Western Australia in 1982 and was a Fogarty International Fellow at the US National Institutes of Health in Washington, between 1984 and 1986. In 1989, Peter became a Lecturer in Biochemistry at the University of Western Australia, then Senior Lecturer before being appointed Professor in Clinical Biochemistry in 1994.

Linda Dawson

Deputy Director General – Industry, Science and Innovation

Linda Dawson is a senior executive with more than 25 years’ experience working in large Australian and multinational organisations. 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.  

She holds a Master’s 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.

Grant Dusting

Director of Strategy, McCrindle

Grant Dusting is a social researcher and the Director of Strategy at the internationally recognised McCrindle.

With a background in public policy, community engagement and boardroom experience in the NFP sector, Grant is experienced at advising organisations on how to respond strategically to current and future trends.

Grant brings a wealth of research experience to his engaging presentations and consulting. He loves providing data-led insights so decisions can be made with wisdom and stories told with clarity.

Rimma Shafikova

Senior Data Scientist, Virtual Gaming Worlds (VGW)

Rimma is a Senior Data Scientist at one of Australia’s unicorn businesses. Over the past six years, she has climbed the ladder from Associate to Senior Data Scientist, significantly contributing to VGW’s data-driven culture. A firm believer in the value of experimentation and scientific approach for decision support, Rimma also appreciates the human penchant for anecdotes, storytelling, and individual data points. Her passion resides in harmoniously balancing these two contrasting elements.

In addition, Rimma is a certified Graph Professional. She is an accomplished public speaker, boasting a list of previous engagements that include YOW! Data, CDAO Perth, DDD, and Latency talks.

Jonathan Neo

Data Engineer at Canva | Founder of Data Engineer Camp

Jonathan is an Analytics Engineer at Canva where he is building data platforms to empower product teams to unlock insights from millions of users.
He has previously worked at EY, Telstra Purple, and Mantel Group, where he has led data engineering teams, built data engineering platforms for ASX-100 customers, and developed new products and businesses. Since 2020, Jonathan has trained over 100 students through data analytics bootcamps and courses. 

In 2022, he founded Data Engineer Camp, a 14-week data engineering bootcamp that empowers professionals to become data engineers with the modern data stack.

He also hosts the Perth Data Engineering monthly meetup group with over 300 members.

Dr Newton Campbell

Director of Space Programs at the Australian Remote Operations for Space and Earth (AROSE) Consortium

Dr. Newton Campbell Jr. is the Director of Space Programs at the Australian Remote Operations for Space and Earth (AROSE) Consortium. Dr. Campbell began his career supporting US Department of Defense (DoD) research programs, primarily with the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). For ten years, he served as Principal Investigator and technical lead of multiple DoD research programs, developing new technologies in the domains of Internet Privacy, Internet-of-Things, and Cyber-Physical Systems. During this time, Dr. Campbell also completed his Ph.D. in Computer Science at Nova Southeastern University. After DoD, Dr. Campbell served as an Artificial Intelligence (AI) subject matter expert on the NASA Langley Research Center OCIO Data Science Team. In this role, he focused on facilitating the ethical use of AI throughout NASA, through strategy, advising, and implementation of R&D programs. 

Glenn Butcher

CEO, Managing Director of Fund WA

Glenn Butcher is a technology company builder with 25 years of experience in senior leadership roles at major companies and organizations. His personal mission is to diversify the WA economy, growing existing innovation industries, and create an ecosystem of innovation in the state. 

Glenn holds board and advisory positions at several startups in Sydney and WA.

Glenn is also a venture partner at a Venture Capital (VC) firm, CP Ventures, which invests in the world’s leading early-stage startups. CP Ventures has invested in dozens of companies in the fields of satellites, GreenTech, AI, BioTech, FinTech, logistics, and marketing automation, from Auckland to Seattle. Glenn assesses early-stage companies, provides strategic advice and contributes to investment decisions for the fund.

Tina Ambrose

Co-Chair Women in Tech WA (WiTWA)

Tina has 15 years’ experience in the technology industry, connecting a range of talent with great organisations across the UK and Australia. She is passionate about improving the Tech [+] landscape through building diverse and inclusive teams for her clients; as well as providing support and advice to candidates through their various career progression stages.

As a regular attendee of WiTWA events since she arrived in Perth in 2016, Tina has always championed the organisation to her network. In January this year Tina officially joined the WiTWA sub-committee to help enhance their social media presence and support their mission to encourage business change to accommodate diversity and provide a network of support for women in technology, science and innovation – Tech [+]. A mission which she truly aligns to.

Justin Strharsky

Founder and Director of Humyn.ai

Using the power of technical communities, I’ve helped more than 30 $5-15BN companies to achieve $MMs in efficiency, sustainability, and innovation gains, and have built 3 businesses in the process. Now I’m building a global community of AI creators. I believe that we are on the cusp of a massive change in applied intelligence. If the last 10 years were defined by the explosion of data we generate, then the next 10 will be about giving people the power to put this data to use with collective, augmented intelligence. It’s not just about new technology – it’s about organizing our teams in new ways so that people and technology together can solve problems more intelligently than ever before. That’s why I co-founded Humyn.ai – we will give every business the power to solve challenges with data science, and every data scientist opportunities to do great work that makes an impact. We are changing the way people do data science projects, giving them access to skills and talents once reserved for only the biggest technology companies. Previously I co-founded Unearthed with the purpose of turning one of humanity’s biggest challenges into an opportunity. We all rely on materials and energy for our quality of life. Yet producing these comes at significant cost. The team at Unearthed is driven to improve the sustainability of primary industry – we do this by connecting top innovators, startups and suppliers to opportunities with energy and resources companies. Early in my career I worked in Silicon Valley, for both a large network computing company and one of the first companies commercializing artificial intelligence. I have co-patented several novel industrial applications of machine learning.

Using the power of technical communities, Justin has helped more than 30 $5-15BN companies to achieve $MMs in efficiency, sustainability, and innovation gains, and have built 3 businesses in the process. 

Justin is now building a global community of AI creators. 

Previously Justin co-founded Unearthed with the purpose of turning one of humanity’s biggest challenges into an opportunity.

Early in his career Justin worked in Silicon Valley, for both a large network computing company and one of the first companies commercializing artificial intelligence.

Justin has also co-patented several novel industrial applications of machine learning.

Jeya Bevan

Director: Strategy & Planning, idoba

Strategy and transformation professional experienced in leading strategy creation, change implementation and project delivery in the engineering and tertiary education sectors. Experience is underpinned by a strong academic background in engineering and a Ph.D. specialising in systems thinking and renewable energy. Brings considerable management and technical experience in leading multidisciplinary teams, in creating collaborative workplaces and in improving business performance. Worked for large and complex organisations across locations in Australia, Asia and Europe.

Ed Lewis

Director: Data & Analytics, idoba

Ed has been the Director of Data & Analytics for idoba, since 2022. 

Ed’s background as a Geophysicist has led to his strengths in Data Science, Data Analytics, Collaborative Problem Solving and Management, having previously managed teams at Curtin University, PGS and ION GeoPhysical,.

Prof Melanie Johnston-Hollitt

Director at Curtin Institute for Computation & Australian Space Data Analysis Facility

Professor Melanie Johnston-Hollitt is an internationally prominent radio astronomer working in the space between astrophysics, computer science and big data. She is the Director of the Curtin Institute for Computation (CIC), and the Australian Space Data Analysis Facility (ASDAF). With an educational background that includes two undergraduate science degrees – one in theoretical and experimental physics, and the other in mathematics and computer science – she also holds a PhD in radio astronomy.

Professor Johnston-Hollitt leads two multi-disciplinary teams investigating how to best meet the increasing demand for artificial intelligence, machine learning, data analytics, and visualisation, working closely with industry, government, and researchers to tackle problems that are both fundamental in nature as well as industry-focused. 

Nasir David

Director Data and Information Systems at WA Department of Health

I am currently the Director of Data and Information Systems within the Information Systems and Performance Directorate, WA Department of Health. I also head the WA Health Data Linkage service and am also responsible for the wide adoption and support of REDCap within WA Health, with both services greatly assisting research and health innovation across the sector to improve patient outcomes. My team have successfully lead and contributed to significant COVID-19, Vaccinations and RAT data infrastructure projects to assist in the State’s pandemic response. I continue to strive for a positive workplace culture and constant customer focused engagement and improvement in the organisations I work in. I seek to always align and instill these values in my staff, executive and customers to promote better business and well being outcomes.

Alex Bertram

Dad, Innovator, Sustainability Tech

Alex is a proud father of two, working with First Mode to accelerate the decarbonization of haulage in mining globally, alongside his role changing work for the better, in heavy industry with technology together with the Australian Automation & Robotics Precinct in Western Australia.
Alex has over 15 years’ experience working at the intersection of technology, the frontline heavy industry and sustainability with industry leaders like BHP, Microsoft and now Seattle founded First Mode, and is a non-Executive Director of global mining sustainability focussed Not For Profit, CEEC International.

Matt Schneider

Chief Technology Officer, idoba

Matt is the Chief Technology Officer of idoba. He focuses on technological innovation, client engagement, and the establishment of long-term strategic alliances. He designed and developed the award-winning technology platform, AkumenTM, to improve the decision-making process in businesses. The iAwards announced AkumenTM as the 2016 Big Data Innovation of the Year and the overall Innovation of the Year.

With his innovative solutions, he has worked with clients at the forefront of technology that have achieved world-class competitive advantages. Over the past two decades, Matt has built a reputation as a thought leader in the field of operational consulting and systems development. Among his interests are production chain studies, current and future state studies, operational management systems, artificial intelligence, and optimization.

Andrew Bell 

Director, Innovation Central Perth

Andrew is the Cisco-Curtin Partnership Manager & Director of Innovation Central Perth (ICP), focused on driving the relevance and growth of ICP to support a broader agenda of promoting an open innovation across Western Australia. Andrew leads a team of Cisco and Curtin University resources to partner with WA organisations to digitise processes and advance their digital transformation journeys. Andrew also leads an open innovation ecosystem in Western Australia through a successful membership model, while managing the growth of the other Cisco-Curtin initiatives, including the Cisco-Curtin Centre for Networks and the Cisco-Curtin Learning Futures Lab (launching in 2022).

Schellie-Jayne Price

Partner | Stirling & Rose

Schellie-Jayne (“SJ”) Price leads the AI practice at the law firm, Stirling & Rose. Prior to joining Stirling & Rose, SJ worked as an in-house lawyer in the international resources industry where she championed and project managed AI applications. She is a law school lecturer on technology at Murdoch University and advisory board member for the Centre for Legal Innovation and winner of the WiTWA Tech +20 Award for her work in machine learning. SJ founded and was the inaugural chair of the Legal Technology and Innovation Community for corporate lawyers across Australia.

Parijat (Roy) Roychowdhury

National Solution Lead – Smart Engineering, AI & Data Analytics; Akkodis Australia 

As National Solution Lead – Smart Engineering, Data and AI are responsible for developing service offerings and solutions for multiple industries across Product Engineering, R&D, Digitisation, Automation & Analytics, as an Energy & Utility Consulting Partner contributing to thought leadership and innovation towards a net zero future. 
Other activities include developing software and application services across various domains, including Automotive & Transportation, Clean Energy and Renewables, Telcom, Healthcare, Financial Services, Industrial Manufacturing and Defence. Active participation for end to end pre-sales activities in coordination with cross functional teams such as sales, delivery and marketing. Leading the Analytics, AI & Cognitive Centre of Excellence in Australian geography.

Sarah James

Author, Innovator, Technologist 

Sarah James is a dynamic and energetic author, innovator and technologist. Sarah has 25 years of delivery excellence and experience in Analytics, AI, IoT and Data and their application. Sarah is co-founder of Jacaranda Hill Farm, an off-grid, sustainable farm in the Darling Ranges that uses innovation to be WA’s first tech-focused regenerative farm open to visitors and campers. Sarah has also written a book called Are You Ready to Change the world? Technology Leadership for the Future. 

Sarah is a TEDx speaker and a passionate advocate for Autism. Sarah is on the Curtin University AASQA program board and a mentor at a Neurodivergent Coderdojo club.


Philipp Bayer

Research Officer Computational Biology & AI OceanOmics, Minderoo

Philipp finished a PhD in applied bioinformatics at UQ in 2016 where he worked on genotyping in plants. He then moved to UWA, where during a Forrest Fellowship and half a DECRA he worked on pangenomics and the application of interpretable AI in plant breeding pipelines and genomics. 

In 2022 he has moved to a position at the Minderoo Foundation within the OceanOmics team, where he uses AI to analyse environmental DNA from ocean samples to change how we measure, understand, and protect our oceans. Headshot attached.

Tele Tan AM

Deputy Head of School – Electrical Engineering, Computing and Mathematical Sciences

John Curtin Distinguished Professor Tele Tan AM is a Professor in Artificial Intelligence and Mechatronics at Curtin University.

Tele obtained the PhD degree in Electronics Engineering at Surrey University (UK) in 1993 and spent a decade in defence research before joining academia in 2004. As an engineer, Tele’s vision is to make tomorrow better for the community and sees the importance of collaboration as a tool to help build resilience within our community, both local and global. 

Cecily Rawlinson

Director at WA Cyber Security Innovation Hub

I am a committed leader with a firm belief that changemaking is more than just a job. I am dedicated to working with organisations that strive for positive, equitable and inclusive impact. I have a specialised international background, and multi-disciplinary academic training and professional experiences in international hubs including Geneva and Johannesburg. I possess excellent research and analytical skills, and pride myself in my critical-thinking ability and drive to find elegant solutions to complex problems. My strongest asset and true passion is connecting and communicating with people, ensuring excellent client-focus and strong partnerships with stakeholders. I am passionate about Design Thinking and using new methodologies to unlock the creative potential of participants, stakeholders and innovators.

Veli-Matti Vanamo

Chief Technology Officer APAC, Insight Enterprises

Veli started his career with the Digital Equipment Corporation in 1998 as a customer facing consultant, and has since worked in the Information Management field delivering solutions for global enterprise customers. He has worked with Microsoft SharePoint since Tahoe Beta 2 release in mid-2000. Veli was the Lead Technical Architect responsible for HP Services Global Knowledge Management Systems and deployment of Microsoft Office SharePoint Server architecture for HP’s 200,000 users.

Veli has been a member of number of Technical Review Boards, including the Microsoft Developer Advisory Council for SharePoint 2010 and Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 and lead a number of Technical Adoption Programs for early adopter customers since 2003.

Dr Leah Riungu-Kalliosaari

Project Coordinator – Curtin Institute for Computation

Dr Leah Riungu-Kalliosaari is a dynamic and award-winning professional with 15 years of international experience in ICT and digital research. Driven by her passion for advancing science and research, Leah works at the Curtin Institute for Computation (CIC), where she focuses on accelerating knowledge, creativity, and innovation through scientific project management. Leah excels in leading and managing internationally distributed teams in executing R&D projects. She has a strong background in empirical software engineering research and holds a Doctorate in Software Engineering. She is actively involved in African development affairs and has volunteered for various organisations promoting collaboration, diversity, and technology. Leah is passionate about STEM and empowering migrant women and youth.

Chris Hui

VP of Product, Strategy & Operations – Tracked

Chris is a globally recognised Analytics Executive with a remarkable track record in driving data-driven transformations across industries. With extensive experience spanning the entire data life-cycle, Chris has built a reputation for building high-performing analytics teams. He is known for his expertise in cultivating digitally mature organizations and closing the digital skills gap. 

Chris’s notable achievements include spearheading the development of Microsoft and Springboards’ highly reputed Data Analytics Program as well as successfully establishing Data Analytics Programs for industry giants Amazon and Walmart, empowering their workforces through digital upskilling initiatives to face an AI-first world.

Nick Ettlinger

Lead Data Scientist, Innovation Central Perth

As the lead Data Scientist at Innovation Central Perth, Nick helps connect university talent with industry opportunities. He has more than 8 years experience in the data industry working closely with clients and teammates to build high value data products. He has developed throughout the data science value chain, making significant professional contributions in areas including data cleaning and transformation, enterprise reporting, Product Analytics, A/B Testing, KPI definition, and predictive modeling. Nick started his educational journey in data science at Carnegie Mellon University in the USA (QS world ranked #48) and is building on it at Curtin University.

Barry McGuire

Welcome to Country

Traditional owner and Wadjuk Noongar representative will conduct the Conference Welcome To Country on behalf of the Wadjuk people

Hans Boehm

Master of Ceremonies

Hans specialties lie in education and care pedagogy, compliance, management and investment. 

Hans is an experienced facilitator, master of ceremonies and content author. 

You might recognise Hans from the 2022 Data for Business Conference.

David Smith

Centre for Entrepreneurial Research and Innovation (CERI)

David Smith is a passionate technology professional with a diverse background in architectural and computational design, software development, and data science. Holding a Master of Architecture and Data Science with distinction from the University of Western Australia, David has a proven track record of leveraging his unique skill set to solve complex problems, drive innovation, and bridge industry silos to generate value for companies.


Currently working as the Programs and Digital Executive at the Centre for Entrepreneurial Research and Innovation, a non-profit organization focused on commercializing deep technology research, David utilizes his expertise in digital technologies, innovation, and communications to empower the industries of the future.