Meet the amazing leaders from the International community; small  business, corporates and government


Kistin Gunnis

COO of Business in Heels, today she works with professional & business women to understand and articulate their value and how to make a difference in their profitability.

Kistin Gunnis has worked internationally and domestically in the Telco Industry and knows how hard it can be to succeed as a woman and on your merit. 

Kistin is passionate about supporting women to get the rewards they deserve. With over 25+years of experience within Operations Management, she has seen it all.

She is an experienced mentor working with professional women to carve out the career they desire and encouraging them to negotiate for the rewards they deserve.

Jodie Bruce-Clarke

Confidence Expert she is Co-founder of RiSe Women is a business dedicated to helping women build their confidence, stand tall and achieve by teaching them that confidence is not something that only ‘lucky’ people have – it’s accessible to everyone! The right information, practical techniques and the will to do (and be) more, is all you need. The greatest joy in life is speaking to women about techniques to increase their confidence!

Now let’s get this straight… I was not born with truckloads of confidence, I was not bestowed with a magical gift, nor did I have some super-human genetic code. My confidence is a result of many years worth of growth, learning, mistakes and practise.  It’s something I work on daily, using practical techniques that now, through RiSe Women, I can share with you

Jodie is passionate about empowering women to be confident

Lisa Sweeney

She is the CEO of Business in Heels, daily she works to fast-track women on their journey. She has 4 1/2 years of small business experience and well understands the transition from corporate to business owner.

Her expertise includes strategic planning, marketing, expansion through digital marketing, she is a strategic connector.

Her background is 25 years of corporate buying experience with expertise in strategic planning, sourcing, online retail,  negotiation and she well understands the hurley burley of a corporate career.

She is passionate about making a difference for women & on a daily basis works to find solutions to levelling up the playing field. This year having launched mentoring, access to new women’s professional indemnity & superannuation solutions.

Amanda Tay

is Head of Small Business NAB, NSW. She has worked in the finance industry for over 18 years, and currently oversees the NSW Small Business division for National Australia Bank. In addition, Amanda is a trained Executive and NLP practitioner, served on many community boards, and champions or chairs several women’s networking events both domestically and internationally.

Amanda has navigated her leadership team through tough restructures and changing economic environments with top tier results. She boasts a wealth of experience and knowledge that stems from her commitment to growing through adversity.

One of Amanda’s greatest joys is helping women develop critical emotional, business and leadership skills to thrive in their environment.

Natalie Burrows

She is the Head of Corporate Sales at Medibank.  She is a self-motivated and driven Sales Leader with over 20 years of sales experience.  As an empathic leader, Natalie chooses to lead from the front and in doing so has had the opportunity to work in several industries managing diverse groups of people.  She is an example of how good leadership skills can be transferred from one industry to another and highlights the importance of an open mind.

Natalie’s great passions are personal development, constant learning and health and fitness.  She is always looking for opportunities to learn and develop both personally as well as a leader.  Her current role merges her passions and gives her the platform to engage with organisations on how best to support their employee’s health and wellbeing.


Natalie is also an active member of her community volunteering her time when she can.  She is the President of the P&F committee at Mentone Grammar where both her boys attend, and she gives her time to help develop the school community.

Mrinalini Venkatachalam

She is the Regional Director for South-East Asia and Oceania at WEConnect International, a global nonprofit network that works with multinational corporations and multilateral organizations to generate market-access opportunity for women’s business enterprises in over 125 countries through supplier diversity

The organization identifies, educates, registers, and certifies women’s business enterprises based outside the U.S. that are at least 51% owned, as well as managed and controlled, by one or more women, and then connects them to qualified buyers across the globe. WEConnect International’s network of corporate members, primarily Fortune 500 companies, represent over $1 Trillion in annual purchasing power.

Over the last twelve years, Mrinalini has engaged with large corporates, government agencies, SMEs and community organizations to provide them with a platform to create measurable social impact. She speaks regularly at community events, corporate events, and conferences about the role that gender equality plays in achieving a more sustainable world for everyone. 

Mrinalini has been awarded the Singapore Women’s Weekly’s Great Women of Our Time award in the Public Service and Education category and has been nominated as one of Cleo Singapore’s 2016 top ten Changemakers.

Jo Plummer

 She is an experienced Chair and board executive working across a portfolio of positions including Barwon Water, Deakin MBA Advisory, Barwon Asset Solutions, South Melbourne Market and Geelong Regional AICD Advisory Committee. She was recently made a Fellow of the AICD and is a graduate of the Company Directors and Mastering the Boardroom courses. 

Jo also holds an MBA majoring in Strategy, Planning, Leadership & Communication and is a Business in Heels Ambassador.

Jo is known for her optimistic, energetic style and has been affectionately coined the ‘positive provocateur’. She is relentless in her drive to focus on and positively shape the futures of the organisations with which she is engaged. Her trademark is aligning customer and community expectations with sound commercial, social and environmental outcomes.

Nicola Wojcik

She is the Manager, Strategic Health Programs – Innovation & Insights – WorkSafe Victoria. Nicola has worked in communications and stakeholder engagement for over 20 years for a variety of industry sectors and locations across Australia and overseas.

Nicola spent the majority of her childhood living and being educated in south east Asia (Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia) before moving to Perth, Australia where she completed her schooling and a degree in Asian Studies, with a double major in marketing and Japanese along with further studies in undertaking a Graduate Diploma in Education.

She has spent time working in the energy, water and mining sectors and in trade & investment with those roles seeing her work in Perth, London, Port Hedland, Melbourne and now Geelong. She has been working in Geelong for over 5 years now and very quickly established an understanding of the Geelong business community through her role as Manager, Stakeholder Engagement & Communications for WorkSafe Victoria.  She played a large part in the project team for integration of  WorkSafe to Geelong and was heavily involved in all local partnerships.

She is now the Manager for Strategic Health Programs in the Innovation & Insights division with a current focus on an emerging disease effecting many stonemasons, silicosis.  She loves to be active and takes her love of sport to the Boardroom where she is entering her 5th year as a commissioner for AFL Barwon.

She has been involved in the judging for the Give Where You Live grants, Pako Festa and enters her third year as a Geelong Chamber of Commerce, Geelong Business Excellence Awards judge. Outside of working life, Nicola enjoys spending time with her family, reading and traveling.

Elizabeth Mulhall

She helps organisations realise their growth, cost, and customer experience agenda, within large Scale environments, as well as enterprise organisations (programs >$500M). Her operational and commercial leadership experience includes establishing and running large EPMO’s, program and project management, establishing onshore capabilities and operational readiness.


Elizabeth has a wealth of experience helping organisations deliver end to end operational digital transformation, build robust operating models, take advantage of emerging technologies, and successfully transition to new ways of working as part of significant scale or change programs. These initiatives result in the introduction of new capabilities, organisational models, governance and commercial frameworks, financial management, and, enhanced customer and staff experience. 

Natalie’s qualifications include a Master of Management, Diploma of Business, Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, Registered Nurse Division 2 and Fellow CEO Institute.

Fiona Cromarty

She is the Branch Manager, Partner Program at National Disability Insurance Agency. She has had a long career leading a range of strategic programs primarily focused on improving the outcomes of people who have sustained long-term disabilities due to motor vehicle accidents. She currently leads the Research team at the Transport Accident Commission (TAC), where she oversees the organisation’s investment in health, disability and compensation research. 

Prior to this, she held senior management roles at the TAC in the areas of Business Intelligence, Partnerships and Claims Services.

Committed to building her community, Fiona serves in a number of volunteer roles. These include participating in the Industry Mentoring Program run by La Trobe University, where she connects with students as an industry professional in a 12 week guided but flexible mentoring relationship. 

Students are matched with mentors based on key interests, education and career aspiration alignment. Fiona also supports the Office of the Public Advocate’s Community Visitors program, where volunteers visit disability accommodation services, supported residential services and mental health facilities. In this volunteer role, Fiona visits residents living in specialist disability accommodation to talk with them about the care and support they receive. 

All visits are unannounced and a brief report is written at the conclusion discussing observations, recommendations and issues. The reports are discussed with facility management and compiled for an annual report to the Victorian Parliament.

Sheetal Pillai

She has spent a major portion of her career life in the United Arab Emirates as a serial entrepreneur & a creative thinker. She has been contributing to the creative advertising & events technology industry for the last 23 years, with her current position as the Global Executive Vice President @option1live.


Besides her professional career, her passion for arts & craft is showcased through her brand, Candescent Art Connoisseur; an artistic candle company. Sheetal’s creative mind has helped her pave her path in the entertainment industry catering to corporates & government entities through Option 1 Group, an illustrious events technology & content company. 


Being part of the founding member of this organization has helped her grow and explore her entrepreneurial skills over the past 2 decades as she actively contributed to the global growth and spearheaded several business verticals.Her passion and exposure to the knowledge and experience in the industry has motivated her to facilitate women empowerment and guide those who need a little boost to increase their confidence in being successful. 


Sheetal has a knack for making meaningful connections with audiences and an insatiable appetite for helping others maximizes her potential, to rock a platform, connect with a crowd and provide guidance so that others can effectively do the same.

Sian is a regular volunteer mentor with:

  • Institute of Managers and Leaders ANZ
  • Business in Heels.

And is a Committee Member for Melbourne Business Network, supporting all business across Melbourne and Victoria.

Melanie Colling

She is the Founder of Purpose Driven Projects, co-founder of Experts On Air – Podcast Booking Agency, host of the Business Connections Podcast and Amazon International best-selling co-author of ‘You Are A Genius’. Melanie is a successful entrepreneur, mum of 1, avid podcast listener, voracious business book reader, loves meeting new people and learning about what they do and why they do it and just can’t help connecting people and having fun!

She is passionate about helping business leaders and experts succeed and accelerate their businesses by developing valued connections to become leaders in their field, industry and/or niche. She believes entrepreneurs will make the change in the world we want to see and need, not governments. So is committed to supporting and connecting entrepreneurs to empower change! This is why she gets up every morning!

‘It’s always the best time to build your finance and business knowledge, create a collaborative cost-effective engaged team and business culture, and achieve your goals personally and professionally. And when you need support, it’s ok to ask…’Sian has travelled extensively and enjoys experiencing new cultures and embracing difference and diversity. She has worked in the UK, across Europe, in Russia, and in the UAE. Sian ran her own business from 1997 – 2017, and now heads up the learning development business within Enhanced Group.

She has enjoyed being:

  • Finalist for B3000+ Female Entrepreneur of the Year 2020 (City of Melbourne) 
  • First Women in Management Board Member for The Chartered Management Institute UK (Wessex Region)

Sian is a regular volunteer mentor with:

  • Institute of Managers and Leaders ANZ
  • Business in Heels.

And is a Committee Member for Melbourne Business Network, supporting all business across Melbourne and Victoria.

Amanda Barnard

Talent Development at Adobe APJ, is a strategic business executive with extensive experience creating and delivering impactful people and organisational change outcomes that build success. I have built a strong reputation for delivering value to the business with a professional approach that is commercial, creative and collaborative.

Talent Development at Adobe APJ, is a strategic business executive with extensive experience creating and delivering impactful people and organisational change outcomes that build success. I have built a strong reputation for delivering value to the business with a professional approach that is commercial, creative and collaborative.

I have worked in Australia, the United Kingdom, Europe and across Asia with multi-national businesses and iconic Australian organisations.

Kylie Hull

Kylie Hull has been Head of Regional Branches for Gallagher Australia Broking operations since April 2021. Based in the regional town of Dubbo, Kylie brings not only over 30 years of insurance experience to the role but a deep understanding of the intricacies of rural broking.

An experienced sales leader with deep insurance industry experience and a strong track record of embedding a high-performing sales culture, Kylie has been able to develop new accounts through effective prospecting and networking initiatives, and cultivating relationships with key decision makers. Her passion and dedication have enabled her to drive organic sales growth for the Australian business and motivate her team to deliver year-on-year growth which she now brings to her new role.


Along with a strong rural background Kylie has had more than 30 years’ experience in delivering insurance solutions for a diverse range of clients. She believes that success comes from leading from the front and inspiring through example to achieve organic growth goals and client service excellence.

Kylie’s dedication, passion and results have seen her recognised by the business for key awards such as, Branch Manager of the Year for Australia in 2016 & 2019, Best Leader of the Year in 2018 and attendance at the elite Gallagher Presidents Club held in Chicago in 2019.

Professional Experience

Kylie began her career in 1988 with Commercial Union Insurance. Her roles there included claims executive and technical farm underwriter, before she made the move to a broking role in 1995.

She joined Gallagher in 2012 as Dubbo Branch Manager and was promoted to Area Director for the region in 2016. Using deep insight into what it takes to make a branch successful and working from the ground up she is dedicated to fostering an inclusive and goal-oriented culture.

Kathy Wilton

I have 25yrs leadership experience in the not for profit sector This includes working with new leaders to support them to develop their leadership style, to understand why they lead the way they do and to see what else is possible.

As a mentor I enjoy listening to the stories of others, supporting them to think about what else is possible, asking powerful questions that challenge their thinking and give some examples within my experience that relate to the issue the mentees wants support with. This includes where I have got it wrong, where I have got it right and those in between.

I want to be a resource to others, a tool in their tool kit. A support that can identify with the mentee their strengths and provide some practical outcomes that work for the mentee. I will be agile in my mentoring, that is I can change my style to suit the mentee. I will be open, honest and respectful. As a mentor I want the mentee to come away with, new skills, understanding their values, have clarity about their direction, and be curious about what is possible in the future.

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