Media release

ATSE announces new chief executive

4 November 2019

Following a national executive search, the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering (ATSE) is very pleased to announce the appointment of Ms Kylie Walker to the role of CEO.

Kylie Walker will succeed Dr Margaret Hartley FTSE, who has provided outstanding leadership over the last 11 years. The Board selected Ms Walker confident that she will build on the tradition of excellence, established by Dr Hartley, in advocating for the growing strategic and economic importance to Australia of leadership in technology, engineering and applied sciences.

Ms Walker is a highly respected advocate for the STEM sector. She brings strong experience in guiding national policy to nurture thriving and diverse STEM sectors, as well as considerable governance, strategic planning and financial management capabilities to the role.

She is well regarded for her skills in catalysing public discussion and awareness, and will leverage these across ATSE’s technology, engineering and applied science sectors.

KylieWalker landscape - card

Recently named in the Australian Financial Review’s 100 Women of Influence list for 2019 for her work to improve equity, diversity and inclusion in STEM, Kylie Walker is also Chair of the Australian National Commission for UNESCO and a visiting Fellow at the Australian National Centre for the Public Awareness of Science.

Kylie Walker leaves her CEO role with peak body Science & Technology Australia, where she achieved considerable success, to take on the CEO role with ATSE.

The President of ATSE, Professor Hugh Bradlow FTSE, said: “We are well into the 21st century where the impact of technology and engineering will transform our future like never before.

“ATSE is delighted to have appointed the highly regarded Kylie Walker to this critical role of working with our learned Fellows, government, sector partners, academia and industry to drive towards a bright, technologically-based future for Australia.

“At the same time, we sincerely thank Margaret Hartley for her inspired leadership over the past decade. Margaret has served as the right hand of four Academy Presidents – Robin Batterham, Alan Finkel, Peter Gray and myself.

“She has tirelessly promoted the Academy and its research and policy outputs, building strong relationships with Fellows, government officials, other learned Academies, professional associations, the research sector and industry.”
Ms Walker said that she was honoured to lead ATSE and build on its national and global reputation for fostering and recognising excellence in technology, engineering and applied science.

“One of my mandates is to further empower the Academy to lead crucial national conversations and strategy towards a thriving, healthy and connected Australia.

“I’m also excited by the prospect of working with the ATSE team, Board, Fellowship and partners to build positive change for a more inclusive and diverse STEM-qualified workforce that is ready and able to tackle the big national and international challenges and opportunities.”

ATSE has 880 learned Fellows who are thought leaders and who input into national policies around matters including climate change, a transforming energy sector, the digital economy and an ageing population.

Professor Bradlow added: “Like many sectors of the economy, technology, engineering and applied science are experiencing a time of rapid growth and change. This is a positive trend but also means that we need to build our STEM skills to serve this new economy.

“With outstanding skills in communication and collaboration, a track record of strategic growth, an international perspective, and a strong commitment to authenticity and equity, the ATSE Board believes Kylie Walker is the right leader to guide the Academy to flourish through the years ahead.”

Ms Walker will commence the role at the end of January 2020.