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Her commitment to serving the local community led to her decision to stand as the LNP candidate for McPherson and she was elected at the 2010 election. Karen was re-elected with an increased majority in 2013.
Karen has a history of being prepared to fight for what she believes in. As one of only two female graduates in Mechanical Engineering at QUT in 1983, and later working at power stations and petrochemical sites in regional Queensland and interstate, Karen knows that it takes hard work and determination to succeed in sometimes difficult circumstances.
Having run her own Human Resources and Industrial Relations Consultancy, Karen understands the pressures of owning and running a small business. She is a strong advocate for local businesses as the powerhouse of our local economy.
Karen brings her trademark drive and determination to her job representing southern Gold Coast residents in the Federal Parliament. Following the 2013 election, she took on a leadership position as Chair of the House of Representatives Joint Standing Committee on Public Works – one of the oldest investigatory Committees of the Parliament, and a “watchdog” on Government building and works programs.
She served in this capacity until December 2014, when she was appointed to the Abbott Ministry as Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Industry and Science. Having served 9 months in this role, she was appointed Assistant Minister for Science in September 2015 in the Turnbull Ministry.
As a long-term advocate for the study of maths, science and technology, Karen comes to the role with a passionate interest in promoting and advancing the scientific sector. She brings her experience in engineering, small business, and industrial relations to the task of helping create jobs by assisting Australian industry to grow and become even more competitive.
A long-term resident of the southern Gold Coast, Karen understands the challenges and pressures of raising a family. She is married with three children attending school and University.
Brenda Aynsley is the ACS National President.
Brenda has two passions in this life: to promote the value of professionalism as a necessary condition for all practitioners of ICT and to promote the Internet as a communications medium that can enable and empower citizens and communities.
In 1995 Brenda opened the first Internet café in South Australia and was instrumental in establishing the SA Internet Association, a group that championed the cause of Internet access for all users and providers. In those early years she presented at various Internet workshops and conferences, provided evidence to Senate Select Committee Hearings and served on the Australian Broadcasting Authority’s 1998 Children and Content On-Line Task Force.
In 2000 Brenda established the long running ACS PC Recycling Special Interest Group to help bridge the Digital Divide by providing low cost computers to those in the community who otherwise would not have access to one. This SA based group of volunteers has distributed over 5000 computers to where they were needed most in Australia and continues its work today.
She served as ACS SA Branch Chair in 1999-2001 and 2005-2006 and as National Vice President for 2002-03 and 2010-2011. In early 2010 she chaired the ACS Ageism Task Force which released its “IMPROVING AGE DIVERSITY IN THE ICT WORKFORCE” report in July 2010.
As ACS Vice President Membership Boards, she championed the adoption of the Skills Framework for the Information Age and the implementation of the ACS Certification Program.
It was natural for her to take on the role of Chairman of the International Professional Practice Partnership of IFIP (IP3) and has been active participant in the WSIS Forums and the Multistakeholder participation program leading her delegation in Geneva.
Brenda is an advocate of life long learning and has a Bachelor of Arts in politics and sociology, a Diploma in Social Sciences and a Graduate Diploma in Applied Science (Computing), and Certificate IV in Security Risk Management and Certificate IV Assessment and Workplace Training.
She was made a Fellow of the ACS in 2003 and was awarded an ACS Honorary Life Membership in 2006.
In 2014 she was admitted to the Order of Australia and awarded the Order of Australia Medal (OAM) for her service to the information and communications technology sector.
Brenda is the managing director of a consultancy business in technology to the SME sector.
Kim Wenn is Chief Information Officer with Tabcorp Holdings, a publicly listed company on the ASX and is one of the largest gambling and entertainment groups worldwide. She is a member of the executive and reports to the CEO and attends all board meetings. Kim has been with Tabcorp since 2005 as CIO Wagering. In December 2011, Kim was promoted to group CIO. Kim is responsible for the management of Technology for all Tabcorp Business Units. This includes developing and managing the strategic direction and operational effectiveness of Information Technology to support and achieve the objectives of the organisation; participating in major corporate long and medium term decisions and strategies. As a member of the Executive Senior Management team, Kim is responsible for positioning the company technologically ahead of competitors, particularly focusing on current and anticipated requirements.
Kim has over 30 years experience in the software/IT industry, starting as a software developer, moving into project management and, for the last 20 years, has held various senior executive positions in IT, Operations, R&D, and Product Management.
Kim is a customer focused, outcome driven leader, passionate about leading and building teams that deliver business results. She has expertise in using technology to influence business change and strategic direction, building valued business relationships, leading and managing transformational programs and implementing solutions that grow an organisation’s revenue.
Kim holds a Bachelor of Computer Science, Masters of Management and Technology, and Harvard Advanced Management Program graduate.