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Keynote speakers

The Hon. Fiona Nash

Regional Education Commissioner

Having grown up in Sydney, Fiona has spent the last couple of decades living and working in regional Australia. For many years she was involved in a farming enterprise in the central west of NSW, which her sons Will and Henry are now running.

She spent twelve years in the federal parliament as a Senator for NSW and also held ministerial positions including Rural Health, and in Cabinet the positions of Regional Development, Regional Communications and Local Government and Territories. She also held the position of Deputy Leader of the Nationals.

From 2018–2021 Fiona was the Strategic Adviser, Regional Engagement and Government Relations for Charles Sturt University.

Fiona was appointed by the Australian Government as the Regional Education Commissioner in December 2021.

Mikaela Jade

Founder and CEO, Indigital Edutech

Mikaela Jade comes from the world’s oldest storytellers. A Cabrogal woman of the Dharug-speaking nations of Sydney, Mikaela is a skilled communicator and connector. Named on The Australian’s 100 Top Innovators List and recognised as the 2021 Indigenous Leader of the Year at the Women in Digital awards, Mikaela Jade is widely recognised as a leader in the technology space.

She has delivered at the United Nations in New York to demonstrate the impact of new technologies in Indigenous communities, is a WEF Global Futures Council member, a delegate on the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, and completed a Master of Applied Cybernetics (with Commendation) at the Australian National University’s School of Cybernetics.

Most recently, Mikaela was announced as one of 15 leaders to be awarded the Schwab Foundation 2022 Social Innovators of the Year award. Her company, Indigital, founded in 2014, is Australia’s first Indigenous edu-tech company. Indigital is built on a belief that together we can use digital technologies – including virtual, augmented and mixed realities – to help preserve and proliferate 80,000 years of human knowledge while engaging First Nations peoples in education that leads to skills, jobs, and wealth creation to build a stronger future for all.

Conference program

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