Deputy secretary named Telstra NSW Business Woman of the Year

By David Donaldson

April 8, 2019

New South Wales Department of Planning and Environment Deputy Secretary Lee Shearer has been named the 2019 Telstra NSW Business Woman of the Year.

Shearer, whose full title is Deputy Secretary Central Coast and Resources Regulation Division, is responsible for regulating the mining industry and driving the delivery of the Central Coast Regional Plan, which aims to unlock employment opportunities, fast-track housing and improve infrastructure in the region.

With the Central Coast needing to accommodate an extra 75,500 people by 2036, Shearer is working on coordinating the delivery of this initiative.

“My mission is to create better outcomes for communities through safer workplaces within the mining sector and improving the quality of life for the people of the Central Coast,” she said.

Shearer also took home the NSW Public Sector & Academia Award, which recognises women who have dedicated themselves to making an impact in education or the public service. The other state winners of the public sector and academic awards are:

  • Victoria: Leanne Hill, strategic procurement manager at Melbourne Water Corporation. Her role is is about enhancing community wellbeing, underpinning human health, supporting economic growth and balancing the natural and man-made environment. She sets policies and new directions, embedding diversity and inclusion within the procurement process.
  • ACT: River Paul, chief economist and statistician at the Australian Financial Security Authority. As a passionate advocate for opening government doors to the public, Paul works to empower decision makers, both in households and businesses.
  • Queensland: Australian Federal Police Assistant Commissioner Debbie Platz. In her role, Debbie leads, manages and cares for the resourcing of crimes operations across Australia and offshore.
  • WA: Fremantle Prison Director Paula Nelson. Nelson is the first woman in nearly 170 years to manage Fremantle Prison, the only World Heritage attraction in Perth. As director, she is responsible for delivering conservation strategies for the former prison and its artefacts, as well as tourism opportunities and educational experiences.
  • SA: Professor Zoe Jordan of The Joanna Briggs Institute. Jordan leads the institute to help synthesise research and make it easy to implement into health systems internationally.
  • Tasmania: Katrena Stephenson, CEO of the Local Government Association of Tasmania. Dedicated to building the capability and effectiveness of the state’s 29 councils, Stephenson manages a skilled team to keep councils informed on policy, research and other developments, while developing strategic approaches and practical solutions to a range of issues.
  • NT: Cheryl Wall of the Department Housing & Community Development. Wall considers herself a social landlord, with obligations far beyond tenancy agreements. Working with the Northern Territory Government, she provides housing pathways for the disadvantaged through short term and crisis accommodation, social housing, affordable rentals and home ownership.

The Telstra Business Women’s Awards have recognised and celebrated the outstanding achievements of Australian women in business for the past 24 years.

The national winners will be announced at a dinner in Sydney on May 16. The full list of state winners can be seen here.

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