Meet the Innovate Queensland Team
Innovate Queensland Project Director Brian Ruddle is the Managing Director of Impact Innovation Group, which he established in 2006 to serve an unmet need for independent specialist commercialisation services. He has since helped form four start-up companies based on university technologies, which have raised between $450,000 and $2 million in seed rounds.
Cameron develops strategies for meeting the rapidly changing marketplace all business finds itself in. He is an experienced professional who has helped numerous inventors, start-ups and SMEs with business model development and capital raising; and empowered not-for-profits to generate commercial success and sustainability. He has clients from high growth start up to global organisations and specialises in turning ideas into thriving businesses or new products.
Alexandra Connors is an open-minded and driven opportunist with a background in customer service management and delivering effective project management. As an integral part of the Innovate Queensland team, Alexandra brings an enthusiastic approach and an all-inclusive understanding of financial, social and natural environment aspects of a firm’s activities to achieve sustainable and innovative outcomes.
Emily Cullen has been involved with helping SME’s and startups since 2015 when she helped start the Startup Mackay organisation in Mackay, Queensland. Her aim has been to create an inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem and enjoys facilitating and hosting events, connecting entrepreneurs and providing innovative repeatable and scalable ideas that accelerate growth. She also holds a Bachelor of Business & Professional Communication, Diploma of Accounting and Cert IV in Frontline Management and is currently completing a Master of Information Technology through Deakin University.
Isaac brings to the Impact Innovation team a comprehensive understanding of the unique aspects involved with science translation and commercial development pathways. He specialised in Nanotechnology and Innovation Management while completing his Biotechnology Honours in Bio-Insecticide development at The University of Queensland. This generated a myriad of experiences in the worlds of science, technology and entrepreneurship. He is passionate about developing novel biotechnological solutions to impact real-world problems using his strengths in both the chemical and biological spaces.
Karissa’s strength lies within growth and development, building solid relationships with all her clients and creative problem solving though being flexible in a constantly changing environment. Prior to joining Impact Innovation Group, Karissa worked in global organisations providing services in client relationship management, project administration and sales support. Karissa pairs her specialisation in Human Resource Management from the University of Queensland with her ability to manage strategic partnerships to build a strong and credible reputation within the industry and amongst her peers.
Facilitator and Advisor
Kellie is a creative and enthusiastic person with a diverse range of experience. Kellie has applied her highly regarded skills in business, technology, and innovation to supporting large infrastructure organisations, small and medium-sized businesses, academia, and other research centres. Kellie is a certified Innovation Facilitator and is both a graduate and member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Facilitator and Advisor
Dr Lewis Atkinson is a unique innovation and design-thinking professional and international Strategic Management facilitator. He has 30 years’ experience in knowledge production and transfer through both commercial and public-good innovation pathways to market. He started his boundary-spanning career in FMCG operations, planning and research with Unifoods Australia.
Facilitator and Advisor
Howard helps build sustainable businesses and communities and has designed and facilitated large scale national projects engaging multiple levels of industry, community and government. He has also facilitated local projects to meet the challenges of innovation, climate change and deep human engagement in social and economic progress.
Howard is one of the few ‘specialist generalists’ in the sustainability field and facilitates the innovative Sustainable Startup Hub as part of an Advance Queensland initiative. His work has been recognized by appointment as a Global Advisor to the United Nations Global Compact Cities Programme. Howard has conducted review and development processes with government, business, educational institutions and communities. His approach is inclusive and optimistic and is underpinned by the most recent neuroscience and change management strategies. He has been both CEO and board chair of a national network of social enterprises and other community-owned businesses and has had a number of board membership roles.
Leanne is the founder and lead trainer of Presence Communications, a specialist corporate communications training and services consultancy for the innovation and technology transfer sector as well as government and SME clients. Leanne supports Impact Innovation Group’s delivery of Innovate Queensland, commercialisation services, innovation programs, and client ventures.
Stephanie is a Chartered Mechanical Engineer with over 20 years of experience developing innovative products for global markets, within companies ranging from large multinational enterprises to venture capital funded start-ups. She has particular expertise in energy-related technologies, having worked on hydrogen fuel cells in Canada and Germany, automotive engine systems in France, solid state hydrogen storage systems and lithium ion battery materials in Australia.
Anne-Marie brings a first-hand understanding of entrepreneurs’ needs through her immersion in the startup sector as; a founder; former Community Manager one of Queensland’s leading innovation hubs, and via the University of Southern Queensland as part of the development team of an entrepreneurship program for women. Anne-Marie’s knowledge is supported by 20+ years’ experience in corporate, small business and community ventures.
Dr Tracy Stanley is a Social Scientist with expertise across intrapreneurship, organisational change and employee engagement. She has worked across Asia Pacific and Europe in consulting and senior human resources management roles. More recently she has been a mentor for Start-up Weekend at River City Labs and Women in Digital. Always keen to learn, she’s a speaker and participant in events within the Queensland innovation ecosystem and was chuffed to be a member of a winning team at the department of Transport and Main Roads, Bike Hackathon. She has a number of start-up projects and loves helping others to be successful with their entrepreneurial activities.
Suzy is a trusted consultant, coach and facilitator to top 100 ASX companies, government and entrepreneurial businesses. Her passion is creating innovative, high-performing, customer-focused organisational cultures, with a strong focus on developing strategic, authentic leaders.
Steve has assisted hundreds of Australian and international innovators, start-ups, early stage companies, research organisations, federal and state government departments, industry associations and large companies to understand and transition through their innovation and commercialisation paths. He has worked with companies across diverse industries and sectors to develop and execute commercialisation strategies for new products, services and technologies.
Pushpa brings over 25 years has honed her skills on international stages in Government, Education and Multinational companies. Her Directorship and Governance strength has demonstrated her abilities developing industrial relations and long-term partnerships with associated projects. With know-how in compliance and sitting on various Boards both profit and non-profits, Pushpa reported to diverse Executive Committees, Council, Government and Stakeholders. As a Coach, Speaker, Author and Transformational Leader, Pushpa’s mission is to inspire, lead and transform organisations through their people. She provides mentoring in Entrepreneurial and Innovation Leadership to Corporates, SME’s, Professionals, Millennials, Women, and Individuals resulting countless successful outcomes.