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Educator Conference – Guest Speakers

Our opening keynote speaker is Professor Lisa Harvey-Smith, Australia’s Women in STEM Ambassador, who will highlight the importance of starting STEM early in a child’s life. These skills are essential for developing critical thinking, creativity and problem-solving skills. After all, they’re facing a world that’s changing faster than ever before – it’s up to us to make sure they have the skills to shape their future.

Also speaking at Sonic Boom are well-known actor, musician and author Justine Clarke, Dyson engineer John Smith and Leanne Gibbs, our MC. As a special treat, Justine will be performing two songs, followed by a photo opportunity for attendees during the morning tea break.

Lisa Harvey-Smith Keynote speaker

Australian Government’s Women in STEM Ambassador
Professor of Practice in Science Communications at UNSW Sydney

Lisa is the Australian Government’s Women in STEM Ambassador and a Professor of Practice in Science Communications at UNSW Sydney. An award-winning astronomer with research interests in the birth and death of stars and supermassive black holes, she previously worked on the mega-telescope project The Square Kilometre Array – a continent-spanning next-generation radio telescope that will survey billions of years of cosmic history.

Lisa is a TEDx speaker, a regular science commentator on TV and radio, and has appeared on stage with Apollo astronaut Buzz Aldrin. Lisa is also a presenter on the popular ABC television show Stargazing Live and author of the popular science book When Galaxies Collide.

JUSTINE CLARKE Guest speaker

Australian entertainer and best-selling musician and author

Justine is a gifted Australian entertainer with a highly accomplished career as both a stage and screen actor, as well as a best-selling musician and author. As an actor, she is known for her roles in iconic productions like Look Both Ways, Blue Dog, Maya the Bee, The Time of Our Lives, Home and Away, Muriel’s Wedding The Musical, and Hedda Gabler. Most notably, she has been a mainstay of Play School for 20 years. Host of the high-rotation ABC Kids program The Justine Clarke Show! Justine is also a chart-busting children’s music artist with platinum and gold-selling albums, two ARIA awards and multiple sell-out national tours.

Tom Mogridge - Dyson Engineer

TOM MOGRIDGE Guest speaker

Dyson Engineer

Dyson is a global technology company that disrupts categories with radical reinventions that solve the problems others often ignore, including poor air quality. Tom is a Senior Design Engineer at Dyson’s Environmental Control division, responsible for developing air purifiers such as the Dyson Pure Hot+Cool™ purifying fan heater.

During the conference attendees will hear Tom speak to the following topics:

  • Showcasing how engineered technology can help educators learn, interpret and demonstrate STEM topics, specifically Air Science and air quality.
  • Sharing his insights on Dyson’s obsessive approach to R&D and in-house testing such as acoustics with its five semi-anechoic chambers across the globe.
Leanne Gibbs

LEANNE GIBBS Master of ceremonies

Leanne has held leadership positions in the delivery of early childhood education, professional development and advocacy. She is currently a PhD candidate at Charles Sturt University in Australia. She holds the position of principal researcher at a large public provider of early childhood education. Leanne is also a consultant on leadership and public policy and is an author, guest speaker leader of professional development programs and a non-executive director.

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