PROF PETER SHERGOLD AC (CHAIR)
Professor Peter Shergold AC has a distinguished academic and public service career that spans over three decades.
As the Secretary of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet from 2003-2008, Professor Shergold was the nation’s most senior public servant. In two decades as a senior public servant he served four Prime Ministers and eight Ministers in both Labor and Coalition governments.
Professor Shergold has a Bachelor of Arts (First Class) from the University of Hull in the United Kingdom, a Master of Arts in History from the University of Illinois and a PhD in Economics from the London School of Economics. In 2005, Professor Shergold was elected a Fellow of The Academy of Social Sciences in Australia.
Professor Shergold serves on the Boards of AMP and Corrs Chambers Westgarth. In the not for-profit arena he is on the Boards of the National Centre for Indigenous Excellence and the General Sir John Monash Foundation. He also Chairs the Board of the National Centre for Vocational Education Research. He has headed the Ministerial Expert Group on Gambling.
Most recently New South Wales Premier Barry O'Farrell has appointed Professor Shergold to be Chair of a new NSW Public Service Board. In January 2011, Professor Shergold was elected Chancellor of Western Sydney University.
PROF TALAL YASSINE OAM (COMPANY SECRETARY)
Talal is an experienced Non-Executive Director, CEO and Multicultural Australia advocate.
Talal spent 10 years at PricewaterhouseCoopers and Dunhill Madden Butler as a Director and legal strategist before joining investment firm Babcock & Brown Ltd in the Corporate Finance Group and later in the Technical Real Estate Division.
Currently, Talal is the Managing Director of Crescent Wealth, an Australian pioneer and Islamic wealth manager, which launched the world's first Islamic compliant superannuation fund.
In a non-executive capacity, Talal currently serves as Chairman of First Quay Capital, a Director on the Media Diversity Australia Board, a Director of the Whitlam Institute and Member of the Western Sydney Foundation Council Board.
In November 2012, Talal was also appointed as a Vice Chancellor’s Professorial Fellow within the Crawford School of Public Policy, Australian National University and in 2014 was appointed Adjunct Professor within the School of Business, Western Sydney University.
On Australia Day 2010, Talal was awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for his service to business and to the community through a range of education, health and multicultural organisations.
MS TASNEEM CHOPRA OAM (DIRECTOR)
A Cross-cultural Consultant, Tasneem addresses the management of diversity and intersectionality in leadership and communication across Australian institutions.
For her efforts in cultural competence and community engagement, she was
acknowledged with an OAM (Order of Australia Medal) in 2020. This follows her
being named an Anti-Racism Champion by the Australian Human Rights
Commission in 2019.
In addition to her Consultancy, Tasneem is a Director for The Australian Centre for
the Moving Image (ACMI), the South Asian Australia’s Researching Ideas (SAARI)
and an advisor to InTouch Multicultural Centre Against Family Violence and the La
Trobe University School of Humanities. She has also enjoyed governance affiliations
with Ambulance Victoria, the Luke Batty Foundation, NOW Australia, the Australian
Muslim Women’s Centre for Human Rights and Lentil As Anything.
A TEDxMelbourne presenter, Tasneem has featured on BBC World, Al Jazeera and
ABC’s Q&A, The Drum and Radio Melbourne where she is a regular panellist and
sought after commentator. She is a published author and has written for The
Guardian, SBS Voices & The Age as well as several academic publications. As an
international festival and conference presenter, Tasneem’s most recent appearances
include: the IABC World Conference (Bahrain), the Bradford Literature Festival, (UK)
and The Concordia Forum, (Canada).
MS VANESSA LIELL (DIRECTOR)
Vanessa is a Chief Executive Officer and corporate affairs professional with over 25 years' experience in strategic communications leadership roles. As co-founder and CEO of Herd MSL, Vanessa led the growth of one of Australia's largest and most awarded public relations agencies acquired by global top five advertising group Publicis in 2017.
Vanessa currently acts as Chief Strategy Officer for Crescent Wealth, Australia’s only Islamic superannuation fund and Executive Director for Commtract, a digital technology platform that connects highly skilled marketing and communication experts with project work.
Vanessa is a long-term women’s and human rights advocate and spent two years in Asia and Geneva with Australian Volunteers Abroad to facilitate the development of a UN funded non-governmental human rights platform. The result was a APAC wide NGO position on human rights, women’s rights, national security laws and internally displaced people delivered to the 54th Session of the UN Human Rights Commission in Geneva.
Vanessa is the winner of B&T's Women in Media PR Leadership Award, Fellow of the Public Relations Institute of Australia and an inaugural Walkley Foundation Women in Media mentor. Industry recognition includes multiple Cannes PR Lions for Creativity, Australian Agency of the Year awards and 30+ campaign awards.
Qualifications: Masters of Business Administration (MGSM), BA Communications.
MR DENG ADUT (DIRECTOR)
Deng Adut is one of Australia’s best known lawyers for his work in the court room and as a community leader. He is the 2017 NSW Australian of the Year and a recipient of the prestigious Law Society President’s medal.
In 2016, Deng also published a critically acclaimed memoir, Songs of a War Boy, about his journey to become one of Australia’s best lawyers, and was the subject of a portrait that won the People’s Choice at the Archibald Prize. Having come to Australia as a refugee, following life as a child soldier in Sudan, Graduating from law at the Western Sydney University, and has become a formidable advocate.
Deng is a co-founder and partner at AC Law Group, practising in the areas of criminal and immigration law. Prior to starting his own firm, he not only worked at three reputable Sydney criminal law firms but has also demonstrated a remarkable commitment to social justice having worked at Blacktown Local Court as a liaison officer to the local Sudanese community and at Parramatta Community Justice Clinic, which operates to provide disadvantaged members of the community access to the legal justice system.
Deng regularly acts as a spokesperson for the Sudanese community. Deng is committed to making a positive difference and in doing so, devotes many hours of his personal time every week to activities such as mentoring, advising and supporting members of the community.
MR MATTHEW GRIBBLE (DIRECTOR)
Matthew is Regional Managing Director for PageGroup Australia. With over 24 years’ experience with the Group across Australia, New Zealand, the Middle East and Africa, Matthew is a passionate connector of people and has committed his career to empowering businesses to succeed through enabling them to source the best possible talent and to empower professionals to advance their careers through access to carefully matched job opportunities.
Matthew is passionate about leading PageGroup Australia’s dedicated team working to support greater representation and inclusion for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples through their Reconciliation Action Plan, as well as leading a national partnership with The Smith Family to help disadvantaged children break the cycle of disadvantage through education. As a father of 4, Matt has a true passion for Australia to be an inclusive, open and progressive society. His passion for an inclusive Australia is what led him to join the Crescent Institute Board, where he can contribute to working towards a lasting social impact.
MR HUGH RIMINTON (DIRECTOR)
Hugh is an award winning journalist, humanitarian, news presenter and foreign correspondent of many year's experience. Currently a senior reporter for Network Ten, Hugh has been a foreign correspondent for CNN and the Nine Network and the political editor at Channel Ten.
He is a foundation board member of Soldier On, which supports Australian Defence personnel who have suffered through their service in recent wars, and a foundation board member of the John Mac Foundation, a charity set up by NSW Australian of the Year Deng Adut to honour his brother by promoting peace in South Sudan and providing scholarships for people from refugee backgrounds.
Hugh has received numerous awards, including two Walkleys, a Logie, honours from the Human Rights Commission and the UN Association Media Award.
MR AFFY BHATTI (DIRECTOR)
Affy is a Director at Deloitte and provides trusted advice to managers, executives and ministers to support their strategic and complex initiatives, navigating uncertainty. He is an expert in business transformations and major capital projects with a proven track record over 19 years across the UK, Australia and New Zealand.
Affy is passionate about bringing positive change to Australian communities and is a Board member of the Crescent Foundation, actively supporting causes to provide scholarships to refugees and the Crescent Institute, making Australia's most recognised leaders more accessible to professionals.
Affy is also the co-founder of the Muslim Professional Network and has previously held advisory roles for the Australia Day Council of WA, celebrating the extraordinary contributions of Australians to society and for the WA Minister for Citizenship and Multicultural Interests Multicultural Advisory Committee.
MS SARA MANSOUR (DIRECTOR)
Sara is a lawyer, poet, co-founder and director of Bankstown Poetry Slam (BPS). BPS is Australia's largest poetry slam which provides a platform for people of all ages across Western Sydney to express themselves through a number of award winning poetry programs and events. BPS is regarded as the largest regular spoken-word event in Australia.
Sara graduated from a Bachelor of Laws from Western Sydney University in 2016, and is a practicing lawyer and board member of NOW Australia and Monkey Baa Theatre Company.
Sara has been recognised for her achievements, winning the Young Citizen of the year in the Canterbury- Bankstown region and also Outstanding Youth Leader at the ZEST Awards in 2017. In 2018, she was selected to be a mentor for the Sydney Writers Festival Youth Curators program, and also delivered a TEDx Talk in Parramatta on the inception of the Bankstown Poetry Slam. In that same year, she was selected to partake in the Youtube Creators for Change project, alongside other members of the Bankstown Poetry Slam group.
In 2019, she was selected as a writer for the upcoming ABC iView show Halal Gurls, and was nominated for the Young Woman of the West Award.
MR GEOFF MORGAN AM (DIRECTOR)
Geoff sits on several Boards including McTavish Surf International Pty Ltd, The World Scout Foundation and The World Scout Committee and in early 2020 completed his tenure as Chairman of LiveHire Ltd, an HR Tech public company.
He is also the joint Chairman of the World Scout Foundation, Australian Chapter, sits on the Queens Scout Scholarship Selection Committee and the Lord Baden Powell Society Management Committee and is a Branch Member of the Scouts Australia’s National Council.
Geoff was co-founder of Morgan & Banks in 1985 and grew the company to become a dominant global recruitment force. Morgan & Banks was publicly listed prior to its acquisition by TMP/Monster.com. Talent2 was then established in Australia and grown to be a global business which was acquired by Allegis Group – the largest private talent management firm in the world.
People are a passion for Geoff and for over 35 years he has immersed himself in the work environment and employment industry globally. Geoff has been a great mentor to many people, particularly in the Indigenous Community and more latterly around the areas of refugees and asylum seekers. His other great passions include Australian Indigenous Affairs, motor racing, cycling, travel and most importantly his family.