Melbourne VIC, Australia, 8 June 2016 |


Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley and Jetstar Group CEO Jayne Hrdlicka have co-chaired an historic consultation, bringing together delegates from the worlds of business, sport and not-for-profits to gather vital data for a United Nations report.

The group was tasked with gathering stories and actions for a report to the UN Secretary General High Level Panel of Women’s Economic Empowerment to be handed down in New York in September.

Former Executive Director of the International Trade Centre in Geneva, Patricia Francis, represented the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon’s High Level Panel, and outlined the seven Women’s Economic Empowerment Principles (WEPs) along with the focus of the Panel and encouraged attendees to sign up to WEPs and promote real change within their organisations.

Craig Tiley was delighted to have the opportunity to host this influential group, and is determined to make a difference to the gender equality cause he champions with passion.

“The biggest takeaway for me was to be in a room of such influential people to discuss and agree on actions, and then go and make things happen. This a journey and it’s important to build on the momentum for greater change and better results in gender equality,” Tiley said.

“Where sport contributes, and where we have an opportunity, is that here in Australia it’s both very emotional and very high profile. As leaders in sport, we have an opportunity to set the agenda and to ensure there’s a commitment to equality.”

Co-chair of the event, Jetstar Group CEO and Tennis Australia board member Jayne Hrdlicka is optimistic on the outcomes from the consultation.

“Today is a landmark day in many respects. We have so many movements underway … around business and sport and the political communities to improve gender balance. In Australia we’ve really advanced the dialogue but we are still confronted with slow results,” she said.

Patricia Francis is charged with supporting the High Level Panel delivering the report to the United Nations in September, and was impressed with the engagement of the group, as well as the ideas and initiatives discussed.

“To ensure this report is actually reflective of the reality facing business, in different parts of the world where countries are at different levels of development, it’s important we understand the challenges companies are facing, look at what they are doing to find solutions and what has worked. We want to find good practices … and to explode those … so that others can learn from the experiences.”

Topics covered included parental leave, access and affordability of childcare, equal pay and growing awareness, acceptance of women’s disrupted career paths and support to women owned enterprises.

A common theme of the consultation was that closing the gender gap in the workforce is not just a women’s issue, it’s a talent issue. Equal representation in the workforce will benefit everyone, and provide work/life balance solutions for men as well as women.

The following group joined Craig Tiley, Jayne Hrdlicka and Patricia Francis to participate in the consultation:

Carol Schwartz AM, Women’s Leadership Institute Australia

Emma Petherick, McKinsey

Tammy Medard, ANZ

Ainslie Van Onselen, Westpac

Debra Eckersley, Price Waterhouse Coopers

Brendon Gale, Richmond Football Club

Yolande Foord, Telstra

Holly Ransom, Emergent

Libby Lyons, Workplace Gender Equality Agency Director

Janis Shaw, BPW Australia

Belinda Gibson, Chief Executive Women

Jo Burston, Inspiring Rare Birds and Job Capital founder

Dr Bernadette Whitelum, The Whitelum Group

Emilia Gligorovska, CSIRO

Anne Tesch, WEConnect International

Jodie Haydon, Viva Energy

Alicia Gleeson, Crown Resorts

Jackie Woods, Workplace Gender Equality Agency

Freda Miriklis, Leader developing business coalitions on women’s empowerment

Andrew Medard, AMGE

Melanie Cooper, Coopers

Kate Palmer, Netball Australia

Olivia Philpott, Netball Australia

Andrew Ingleton, Cricket Australia

Annika Freyer, Male Champions of Change

Kim Stirling, Autopia

Simon Hollingsworth, Australian Sports Commission

Georgegina Poulos, HACCI

Rohini Kapapadath, Pitcher Partners Consulting

Wendy Johnstone, Salesforce

Kirsten Lange, Maddocks

Jaquie Scammell, Tennis Australia

Brian Morris, Melbourne and Olympic Park Trust