Alumni Award for Social Impact Winner 2015
Dr Diann Rodgers-Healey
Consultant and Academic Executive Director, Australian Centre for Leadership for Women
PhD (Education) 2009 | Graduate Certificate in Business Coaching 2011
Citation orated by UOW alumnus Mr Silvio Rivier
Dr Diann Rodgers-Healey is a pacesetter, advocate and mentor. She has lived the goals of the organisation she founded to “transform, empower and recognise.” Her cause is to give people a chance to realise their talents, to shine and to influence their world.
Diann has an enduring passion for education and its power to enrich and transform lives. She experienced that transforming power herself as she moved from her own career beginnings as a high school teacher to tertiary sector positions. After completing her PhD at this University, she lectured in both Management and Education, receiving a Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Outstanding Contribution to Teaching and Learning. From 2012 to 2014, she was an Associate Fellow of the Australian Institute for Business Wellbeing at UOW. She is currently an Adjunct Professor of The Cairns Institute at James Cook University, and at Notre Dame University, Sydney.
Diann’s academic career complemented her commitment to empowering individuals to take a just and effective role in their communities. She remains a leading and successful activist for the advancement of women, without disregarding the importance of assisting men to define and achieve their goals in society. Her PhD thesis led to the development of a co-existential leadership model for workplaces for both men and women.
In 2000, Diann founded the Australian Centre for Leadership for Women (ACLW). The Centre aims to empower and energise current and emerging female leaders through research and focussed resources, and by coaching and mentoring women on professional and personal advancement.
As the Director of ACLW, Diann promotes its core role in recognising achievement through national leadership awards for female leaders in the community, and for men and women initiating programs for the advancement of women. ACLW’s Flagship Awards Program, including the Sustaining Women’s Empowerment in Communities and Organisations Award, began in 2006. They are judged by eminent women and men, supported by politicians, and have attracted commercial sponsorships from major organisations such as ANZ, Australia Post, and NRMA.
Diann has achieved personal recognition for the Centre and for her leadership in a remarkable portfolio of activities. She has worked tirelessly to organise national campaigns on issues ranging from women’s health and disadvantage to their role in political leadership and on the impact of climate change. She has also excelled as an Executive Business coach and strategist here and overseas. She is a prodigious researcher and the author of evidence-based publications and articles on women’s leadership and activism. In 2009, she was awarded The World of Difference 100 Award from The International Alliance of Women (TIAW). In 2013, she was a finalist in the NSW Premier’s Woman of the Year Award, for excellence in her career and as an inspirational role model for women in NSW.
Diann has established her own global presence through her management roles in London, her publications and as a reviewer for the international journals Advancing Women and the Journal of Women, Politics & Policy. She has also led the Australian Centre for Leadership for Women into the Asia-Pacific region to understand women’s environments, their opportunities and restraints and to build their capacity for leadership.
In the spirit of UOW’s hopes for its graduates, Diann is “able to challenge and cross boundaries”. Diann has sought to give Australian women and men the skills and the strength to face and overcome barriers in their lives and organisations. She has included Australia’s first peoples in her initiatives for women and their communities, and gained the respect of their leaders.
Chancellor, Diann Rodgers-Healey is a champion and guide. Her principles are inclusive and her aim, like this University’s, is to nurture “exceptional people” to lead communities. Diann’s significant contribution to the many communities she operates in is enduring and she is an example to us all.
It is a privilege to present her for the Alumni Award for Social Impact.