AABC (Vic) Committee Executive 2014
President: Di Fleming
As director of the Dūcere Foundation and president of the Australia Africa Business Council (Victoria), Di brings a wealth of leadership experience across education, industry, innovation and trade. As Australia is engaging with Africa across diverse sectors, Di has many stories to tell, challenges to wager and principles for adult and student leadership to share. Previously, Di was director and associate professor in Digital Design at RMIT University where she established and developed the Victorian Government’s Centre for Excellence in Digital Design. Di was also CEO and founding director of Digital Harbour Holdings Pty Ltd, which won the bid to develop the Commonwealth Technology Port Precinct at the Melbourne Docklands.
As Principal of Kilvington Girls' Grammar (1993 - 2001), Di was the first educator to achieve the Telstra Victorian Businesswoman of the Year Award and the National Telstra/AusIndustry Award. In 2001 Di Fleming was featured in the Federation Celebration Exhibition Ordinary Women, Extraordinary Lives a chronology of significant woman across the previous one hundred years. Di began her career as an educator and a director of Fleming Flight Services, a most successful small business.
Since 1976 she has given over two hundred and fifty keynote presentations, workshops, university lectures and after-dinner addresses for both public and private sector organisations throughout Australia, Europe, the United States of America, Canada, China, the United Kingdom, Indonesia, New Zealand, Japan and Africa.
Vice Presidents: N'ana Owusu-Agyemang and M'ark Greeff
Secrtariat: Elisabeth Aloni
Six years ago Elisabeth, a keen traveller went on “The trip of a lifetime” which took her to Africa. Since that trip Elisabeth has maintained a keen interest in the Continent. She sees her membership on the committee of the AABC as a way of contributing to the development of business between Australia and Africa, building stronger relationships between the two continents, not only from the business perspective but from a social and cultural perspective as well. She is also keen to promote within the organisation opportunities to contribute to existing aid organizations with a focus on helping disadvantaged youth.
Elisabeth started working in corporate life after gaining experience as a small business owner. Originally working for an IT company as their CFO, she moved to consulting and most recently works for Freudenberg Filtration Australia adding value to the sales team and ensuring existing customers are well looked after. In her free time she is studying for her MBA.
CEO and Treasurer: Nana Owusu-Agyemang
Nana is an internationally experienced commercial and finance executive with over 25 years experience across Financial Services, Manufacturing, Mining and Technology based businesses. Most recently he was a Director in Deloitte Strategy & Operations practice.
Nana has held a series of senior executive roles at ANZ Bank including CFO Technology and Head of Global Sourcing (CPO) (Melbourne, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Jakarta).
Before this he was the CPO for Norske Skog the world's then largest Newsprint producer (Auckland, Vancouver, Oslo). Additionally, an experienced Chartered Accountant, with over 10 years at Ernst & Young in London, Bermuda, Auckland.
Secretary: Ray De Jersey
Committee for 2014
Gemma was invited and joined the Victorian AABC Committee in 2012. She considers her role as a serving Committee member as a privilege that provides the opportunity to work with, meet and learn about exciting commercial and trade synergies between the two continents of Africa and Australia.
Gemma currently works for Sinclair Knight Merz (SKM), a leading projects firm, with global capability in strategic consulting, engineering and project delivery. SKM operates across Africa, Asia Pacific, the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Africa delivering services in Mining and Metals, Water and the Environment, Buildings and Infrastructure and Power and Energy. Gemma works in the Business, Economic and Commercial team, consulting on a variety of energy, resource and infrastructure projects for both the Victorian and Commonwealth Government as well as the Corporate sector.
Gemma has a keen interest in working collaboratively with stakeholders to align Community, Environmental and Economic objectives to achieve sustainable investment and development outcomes. Prior to SKM, Gemma assisted the establishment of the operational and strategic formation of the inaugural United Nations Global Compact Principles for Social Investment Secretariat (PSI) in Melbourne. This organisation has a mandate to promulgate how the private sector can leverage investments to produce both a financial and social return. In this role, Gemma built key relationships with Australian multinationals from the mining, banking and telecommunications sectors
Heddie is the Honorary Consul for the Republic of Botswana in the State of Victoria as well as a Committee Member of the Australia Africa Business Council and a Director of several family companies focussing on investment.
In 1974, Heddie was a director in, and served on the board of her family companies, which were involved in the earth moving and construction areas, as well as being responsible for the management of retail and commercial property investments.
She has lived in Botswana for between 2 – 4 months each year since 1994. She was a director of family companies in Botswana involved in the concrete industry, quarrying and manufacture of concrete products for more than 12 years. Because of her strong connection with Botswana, she was invited to become the Honorary Consul for Botswana in the State of Victoria and was appointed as such in May 2007. She joined the Committee of the AABC in 2008 and since then has been involved in assisting the AABC in pursuing bilateral trade between Victoria and the African continent.
In her role as Honorary Consul, she also helps in promoting trade and investment between Australia and Botswana, promoting Tourism to Botswana, and assisting in the welfare of the many tertiary students from Botswana studying in Victoria.
Born in the United Kingdom and schooled in Zimbabwe, Rugare moved to Australia in 2001 and successfully obtained a double degree in Law and Arts Honours (European Studies and French) at Monash University.
In 2009, he was admitted as a Barrister and Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Victoria and the High Court of Australia. As a lawyer, he acquired specialist knowledge in the property industry. Rugare enjoys being the client's trusted advisor and providing commercial solutions to complex legal problems.
His leadership roles, community engagements and commercial experience in Asia Pacific, Africa and Europe have exposed him to working with a wide range of people from diverse backgrounds. From Ambassadors, CEO's of big business to asylum seekers. This experience led to his appointment as Director of Corporate Affairs at Dūcere, an organisation that provides educational programs in Leadership, Management and Governance all around the world.
Kailesh has over 10 years of experience in the Australian Education sector having served as an academic, a manager and more recently in a business development and innovation role. He has worked at James Cook University as a lecturer in Economics, Statistics and Global Business in the MBA program as well as a consultant and researcher. Kailesh has managed a private RTO in Melbourne with 5 campuses and over 2000 students whilst taking an active part in student recruitment and growth of the business. More recently, he managed the research development and business development for the Faculty of Education at Monash University in Melbourne focusing on coordinating research contracts, consultancies and commercial activities and intellectual property management.
In his current role as Manager, Innovation & Development at Victoria University, Kailesh is responsible for leading and driving Innovation & Development, Research Consultancy and Commercialisation, Intellectual Property Management, Knowledge and Technology Exchange and Engagement and Partnerships. A Mauritian by birth, Kailesh has worked as an Economist at the Mauritius Export Processing Zone Association (MEPZA) and as a Management Consultant at Deloitte & Touche, Mauritius. He completed his secondary studies at the Royal College Curepipe and holds a BA Economics and a Masters of Economics and African Development Studies from the University of Mumbai, a Graduate Certificate in Adult Teaching from James Cook University, an Advanced Diploma in Management and Leadership from Victoria University and a Masters of Enterprise (Executive) from the University of Melbourne.