More than a third of Australia's 'most influential' engineers based right here in NSW

28 Jun 2013

Chief Scientist & Engineer, Professor Mary O'Kane, has declared New South Wales a "state of engineering excellence" – with more than a third of the nation's 'most influential' innovators based here.

Peak engineering body, Engineers Australia, has released its 'Top 100' list of influential engineers for 2013.

The list is spread across 11 categories: academia/research; associations; community groups; contractor/service providers; consultants; innovation/expertise; manufacturing; politics; public service; utilities; and industry, which covers all other business sectors.

38% are currently working across a variety of sectors in NSW.

Professor O'Kane says it's further evidence NSW is a state of engineering excellence and has more than its share of successful innovators.

"To have so many talented and highly-skilled engineers working across such a vast array of sectors is a real boost for our state," Professor O'Kane said.

"Good engineering involves innovation and creativity, which are critical elements to increasing productivity and achieving long-term economic growth.

"With so many of this country's best and brightest engineers based right here, NSW really is a state of engineering excellence and is very well placed going forward," she said.

Professor O'Kane singled out Sydney-based electrical engineer Dr Simon Poole as just one of those on the list whose innovative work has reaped broad economic and social benefits.

"Simon and his colleague Dr Steven Frisken received this year's ATSE Clunies Ross Award in recognition of their breakthrough optical fibre technology that has shaped the internet worldwide," Professor O'Kane said.

"They've bridged the gap between research and the marketplace, and their revolutionary technologies have been sold to major telecommunications equipment manufacturers in Europe, the United States and Asia.

"In the past 12 years, Simon and Steven have grown their business from a seven-person operation to a team of nearly 300. They operate out of state-of-the-art facilities in inner-city Waterloo and have generated more than $200 million in exports," she said.

Meanwhile, 37% of those on the list were educated in NSW tertiary institutions, including the University of NSW (23), University of Sydney (7), University of Technology Sydney (3), University of Newcastle (2) and University of Wollongong (2).

They also specialise in a range of engineering disciplines: civil (34%); electrical (18%); mechanical (18%); chemical (13%); and other (17%).

"It demonstrates just how successful New South Wales universities have been at producing top-notch engineers, who have gone on to be among the very best in their particular field," Professor O'Kane said.


'Influential' engineers educated and/or based in New South Wales

Academia/Research

Graham Davies, Chemical physicist, University of Wales

Position: Chair Group of Eight Deans of Engineering, Sydney

Adi Paterson, Materials engineer, University of Cape Town

Position: CEO Australian Nuclear Science & Technology Organisation (ANSTO), Sydney

Judy Raper, Chemical engineer, University of NSW

Position: Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research), University of Wollongong, Wollongong

Alex Zelinsky, Electrical engineer, University of Wollongong                                                           

Position: Chief Defence Scientist, Defence Science & Technology Organisation, Canberra

Peter Lee, Chemical engineer, Monash University                                                                     

Position: Vice-Chancellor, Southern Cross University, Lismore

Hugh Durrant-Whyte, Nuclear engineer, University of London 

Position: CEO, NICTA, Sydney                                       

Andrew Vann, Civil engineer, Nottingham Trent University

Position: Vice-Chancellor, Charles Sturt University, Bathurst                                                          


Associations

Jamie Shelton, Structural engineer, University of NSW

Position: National President, Consult Australia, Sydney

Marlene Kanga, Civil engineer, Indian Institute of Technology

Position: President, Engineers Australia, Sydney


Community

Elizabeth Taylor, Civil engineer, University of NSW 

Position: Chair, RedR International, Sydney

John Grill, Civil engineer, University of Sydney 

Position: Chair, John Grill Centre for Project Leadership, Sydney

Bill Phippen, Civil engineer, University of Sydney                                                                        

Position: President, TAD Disability Services (NSW), Sydney


Contractors/Services

Richard Leupen, Mechanical engineer, University of NSW                                                               

Position: Managing Director and CEO, UGL, Sydney

Dan Labbad, Civil engineer, University of Technology Sydney                                                     

Position: Group Chief Operating Officer, Lend Lease, Sydney

Guy Templeton, Electrical engineer, University of NSW                                                             

Position: President & Chief Operating Officer Asia/Australia-Pacific/Southern Africa, Parsons Brinckerhoff, Sydney

Michael Batchelor, Civil engineer, Monash University                                                            

Position: Chief Executive, Aecom, Sydney

Robert Care, Civil engineer, University of NSW                                                                                 

Position: Chair for UK, Middle East and Africa, Arup, London

John Douglas, Civil engineer, University of Adelaide                                                                          

Position: Managing Director, Coffey International, Sydney

Santo Rizzuto, Electrical engineer, University of Sydney                                                                    

Position: Chief Executive, SKM, Sydney


Industry

Chris Raine, Mechanical engineer, University of NSW

Position: President and CEO, Alstom Australia and New Zealand, Sydney                                               

George Savvides, Industrial engineer, University of NSW

Position: Managing Director, Medibank Private, Melbourne                                                       

Bob Every, Metallurgist, University of NSW

Position: Chair, Wesfarmers, Perth                                                                         

Ralph Waters, Mechanical engineer, RMIT University

Position: Chair of Woolworths & Fletcher Building, Sydney                                                             

Mark Cutifani, Mining engineer, University of Wollongong

 Position: Chief Executive, Anglo American, London                                                           


Innovation/Expertise

Rose Amal, Chemical engineer, Univesrity of NSW

Position: Director, ARC Centre of Excellence for Functional Nanomaterials, University of NSW, Sydney                                                                 

Stuart Wenham, Photovoltaic engineer, University of NSW

Position: Director, ARC Photovoltaics Centre of Excellence, University of NSW, Sydney                                                      

Richard Tamba, Mechanical engineer, University of Technology Sydney

Position: Senior Vice-President – Passenger Car Transmissions, AVL, Sydney                                    

Matt Barrie, Electrical engineer, University of Sydney

Position: Founder and CEO, freelancer.com, Sydney                                                                       


Manufacturing

Chris Roberts, Chemical engineer, University of NSW  

Position: Chief Executive & President, Cochlear, Sydney                                                     

Rob Sindel, Mechanical engineer, University of Queensland                                                           

Position: Managing Director, CSR, Sydney

Chris Jenkins, Mechanical engineer, University of NSW                                                             

Position: Managing Director, Thales Australia, Sydney

Mick Farrell, Chemical engineer, University of NSW                                                                                          

Position: Chief Executive, ResMed, San Diego USA

Geoff Lilliss, Electrical engineer, University of Newcastle                                                             

Position: Managing Director and CEO, Ampcontrol, Newcastle

Ian Smith, Mining engineer, University of NSW                                                                                   

Position: Managing Director and CEO, Orica, Melbourne

Julian Segal, Chemical engineer, Israel Institute of Technology, Israel                                                

Position: Managing Director & CEO, Caltex Australia, Sydney


Politics

Greg Combet, Mining engineer, University of NSW                                                                      

Position: Former Federal Minister for Climate Change, Industry and Innovation, Canberra

Campbell Newman, Civil engineer, University of NSW                                                            

Position: Premier of Queensland, Brisbane


Public Service

Mary O'Kane, Computer engineer, Australian National University                                                          

Position: Chief Scientist & Engineer, NSW Government, Sydney

Michael Uzzell, Electrical engineer, University of NSW                                                              

Position: Head of Navy Engineering, Royal Australian Navy, Canberra

Les Wielinga, Civil engineer, University of NSW                                                                             

Position: Director-General, Transport for NSW, NSW Government, Sydney

Warren King, Electrical engineer, University of NSW                                                                   

Position: CEO, Defence Material Organisation, Canberra


Utilities

Peter McIntyre, Electrical engineer, University of NSW                                                                

Position: Managing Director, TransGrid, Sydney

Grant King, Civil engineer, University of NSW                                                                              

Position: Managing Director, Origin Energy, Sydney

Roger Massy-Greene, Mining engineer, University of Sydney                                                        

Position: Chair, Networks NSW, Sydney

Mike Quigley, Electrical engineer, University of NSW                                                                   

Position: CEO, NBN Co, Sydney

Kevin Young, Civil engineer, University of Newcastle                                                                     

Position: Managing Director, Sydney Water, Sydney


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