A refresh of the StartupAUS board will see another two female board members help the not-for-profit in advancing the Australian startup industry agenda.
Both Elaine Stead and Rachael Neumann have been appointed to the board in the refresh, along with two men Attila Brungs and Aaron Birkby.
That brings the total number of board members to ten, and makes it 40%, including with the recently appointed chair of the board, Topaz Conway, as well as Teresa Engelhard.
Elaine is the managing director of Blue Sky Venture Capital, where she’s responsible for its venture capital fund and portfolio. She’s worked as a VC and management consultant in Australia and the US, originally training as a stem cell biologist.
Rachael is a mentor and investor at Startmate Accelerator, and a Board Director or strategic advisor to a number of founders and their early stage companies. She was the MD of Eventbrite Australia, and launched the Melbourne-based office of the major tech company.
The not-for-profit StartupAUS is tasked with “transforming Australia through technology entrepreneurship,” believing that a strong home-grown tech sector is vital for the future of jobs and wealth.
Topaz Conway told our friends at StartupSmart that the new board additions bring both “true diversity” and diversity of experience, saying the only representation the board was missing was someone with experience from the big end of town.
“It’s definitely not ‘likethink’ around the table — we’re after that melding of viewpoints to come up with solutions that are a lot more impactful,” she said.
“It’s an impressive group, the only thing missing is someone with deep big industry experience. Big players are the end customer at the end of the day, and everything we do is to serve them in one way or other.
“It’s a huge industry sector that we need as customers, and they need the innovation from the companies we represent to stay competitive.”
StartupAUS will release its 2017 Crossroads Report in December, which will delve into the current state of the startup sector in Australia.
Congratulations Elaine and Rachael.