ROHAN WORKMANCo-Founder and CEO
Rohan Workman has been an integral part of the Australian startup ecosystem for nearly a decade as a company founder, director and advisor.
Previously, he was the Founding Director of the Melbourne Accelerator Program (MAP) at the University of Melbourne which, under his leadership, was ranked the 8th best program of its kind globally. MAP offers a range of programs, events and activities to up-skill and connect aspiring entrepreneurs.
In 2008 Rohan co-founded RosterCloud which provides HR management software to events companies. He was a Director of RosterCloud until it was acquired in 2016.
Rohan started his career at a boutique corporate advisory firm where he gained experience across a number of industries including telecommunications, agriculture, retail and property. He is a graduate of the Australian American Young Leadership Dialogue and is a former member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia.
Maxine Lee is a leading authority in designing programs that help companies from inception to growth and their first round of funding.
She is responsible for operations, diligence on potential opportunities and supporting founders through business challenges.
Maxine previously spent five years as Accelerator Manager for the Melbourne Accelerator Program (MAP) at the University of Melbourne as one of its first employees. During her time at MAP, Maxine had significant exposure and involvement in building a world class accelerator and managed a portfolio of over 54 companies.
Prior to this, Maxine worked in brand consulting with clients in IT, supply chain and logistics across Australia.
ANTHONY GLENNINGFund Manager
Anthony Glenning is a seasoned Investment Professional and Non-Executive Director with a career spanning 25 years in the software development industry, 14 of those in Silicon Valley.
In 1999, he founded Tonic Systems, a web application development company that was acquired by Google in 2007 as part of the Google doc suite of products. From 2010 to 2018, Tony was the Investment Director for Starfish Ventures, a venture capital firm that specialises in Australian high growth technology businesses. During that time Anthony held directorships at Aktana, Atmail, DesignCrowd, MetaCDN and Nitro Software.
Anthony is also a Non-Executive Director of ASX listed Pro Medicus (ASX:PME) and Azure Healthcare (ASX:AZV). He holds a Bachelor of Engineering (Electrical) and a Bachelor of Computer Science from The University of Melbourne, and a Master of Science (MSEE) from Stanford University in California.
Mei ChessonFinancial Controller
Mei Chesson brings more than 15 years of corporate accounting and finance experience to her Financial Controller role.
Mei qualified as a Chartered Accountant at KPMG and subsequently worked across a diverse range of industries including hospitality, logistics and FMCG. Mei has a keen interest in finance partnering and has a strong commercial acumen which is reflected in the success in her previous roles as Commercial Manager and Finance Partner at Toll Holdings and GlaxoSmithKline respectively.
Mei is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Curtin University.
Sarah abendscheinSeed Program Administration Manager
Sarah Abendschein has extensive experience working in global operations in the startup and technology sector in San Francisco at Australian-founded PDF software company Nitro.
Originally from California, Sarah began her career in San Francisco’s booming technology industry. She has seven years’ experience in program administration, project management, and operations and relocated to Melbourne in 2018. Sarah worked at Nitro for just over five years and saw the company grow from 60 to 200 people.
Sarah oversees company program administration, culture, office and is the Executive Assistant to the CEO.
Jasmin ChiaMarketing Manager
Jasmin Chia brings experience in corporate and project marketing from both private and ASX-listed companies.
Jasmin started her career in marketing and content agencies working with retail and corporate clients before moving client-side to work in property development.
During that time, Jasmin worked across the delivery of 26 residential, mixed-use and industrial projects across Australia and New Zealand, several of which went on to win national and international awards.
With a keen interest in building brand equity and a demonstrated ability to understand market segmentation and target audiences, manage multiple stakeholders and develop engaging communications, Jasmin’s passion for marketing is evident in everything she does.
She holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Marketing/Management) from Monash University.
Ryan Fitzpatrick brings broad experience working with private, ASX-listed and large global organisations in the legal sector.
Ryan began his career in the Mergers & Acquisitions team at King & Wood Mallesons working on domestic and cross-border transactions with market leading companies in Australia and abroad across a range of industries including financial services, healthcare, energy and resources, agribusiness and technology, media and telecommunications.
During this time, Ryan completed a number of funding rounds from series A onwards and provided legal advice to various venture capital firms. Having previously worked for a NASDAQ-listed, Australian social media startup in Washington, D.C. and published a paper on the application of competition law to technology markets, Ryan has long had a passion for venture capital and the startup ecosystem.
He holds a Bachelor of Laws (first class hons) and Economics from the University of Western Australia.
Dr Peter BinksPartnerships Director
Peter Binks has worked at the interface between universities and small and large enterprises for 15 years.
Peter started his career with McKinsey & Company, before executive roles with BHP in Melbourne and San Francisco, and Telstra.
From 2003 until 2009, Peter was the inaugural CEO of Nanotechnology Victoria, before leading the General Sir John Monash Foundation from 2009 to 2015. He was CEO at the Business Higher Education Round Table (BHERT) from 2017 to 2019.
He has been active in technology-based startups since 2008, serving on the Board of Ceramic Fuel Cells, and is currently Chair of Smileyscope Ltd and Nucleotrace Ltd. He was on the scientific advisory board of Defence Science & Technology Organisation, and currently is on the Advisory Board of In2science.
Peter holds a Bachelor of Science from University of Tasmania, and a PhD (Theoretical Physics) from Oxford University.
Paul Little AOCo-founder & Chairman
Mr Paul Little is Chairman and Founder of the Little Group.
Formed in 2006, the Little Group focused initially on opportunities in the property sector through Little Projects and Little Real Estate. The Group has since expanded investments across a range of enterprises including aviation and passenger ferries.
In November 2015 Paul and his wife Jane Hansen launched the Hansen Little Foundation, a large-scale, active philanthropic undertaking with the singular objective of leaving a legacy of significant and positive change.
From 1986 to 2011, Paul was the Managing Director of Toll Holdings and oversaw the Toll Group’s rise to become Asia’s pre-eminent provider of logistics services.
Paul has received a Doctor of Business honoris causa from RMIT University.
In 2010 he was awarded an Officer of the Order of Australia for service to the development of the transport and logistics industries, and for service to the community through philanthropic support of sporting and medical research organisations.
Paul is Chairman of the Australian Grand Prix Corporation and Skalata Ventures. He is a Past Chairman of Visit Victoria and the Essendon Football Club and a former Director of Property Exchange Australia (PEXA). Paul is a Fellow of the University of Melbourne, the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport.
Darrell WadeCo-founder & Director
Darrell Wade is one of Australia’s most successful founders and is a recognised leader in entrepreneurship with extensive experience in designing and building significant and sustainable companies.
Darrell is a Co-Founder and the Executive Chairman of the Intrepid Group – the largest adventure travel tour operator in the world.
He was a founding member of the MAP Advisory Board where he was instrumental in assisting the design of the program. He has also been a board member of many not-for-profits and NGOs, including Parks Victoria and Good Cycles. Darrell is on the Executive Committee of the World Travel and Tourism Council.
He was selected as one of the first group of Australians to complete Climate Project training with the Hon Mr Al Gore. In 2016 he was one of 17 Australian business leaders to sign a statement of support for the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
His achievements include winning the NAB SmartCompany Award and being named the 2002 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year.
Carol Schwartz AODirector
Carol Schwartz has a passion for entrepreneurship and is one of Australia’s leading business identities, recognised as an esteemed commentator on governance, social enterprise, gender equality, women’s leadership, business and finance issues.
As Founding Chair of the Women’s Leadership Institute Australia, Carol was the driver of the Women for Media initiative, which aims to increase female representation in the news media. Carol is also Founding Chair of Our Community, working to build strong communities through stronger community organisations.
Most recently, Carol was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from Monash University, inducted into the Australian Property Hall of Fame, made an Honorary Life Member of the Property Council of Australia and inducted into the Victorian Women’s Honour Roll. Carol was awarded a Monash University Fellowship in 2010 in recognition of her professional distinction and outstanding service as a member of the alumni.
Carol was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2019 for distinguished service to the community as a supporter of women in leadership roles, to social justice advocacy, and to business. Carol also received the Centenary Medal in 2001 in recognition of her outstanding service as a leading business executive and committee participant.
Together with her husband Alan and four children, Carol established the Trawalla Foundation, which works with individuals and organisations that have a vision for the future of Australian society.
Martin AdamsCo-founder & Director
Martin Adams has extensive experience in the strategic and operational management of high-tech global companies in a range of diverse sectors including online education, renewable energy and digital media.
Martin is the CEO of EMS B&K, which is a global provider of continuous, unattended environmental solutions. EMS B&K is a Spectris plc company (SXS:LSE) and was originally founded by Martin as Lochard in 1990.
Martin was a Co-Founder and the former Chairman of the Melbourne Accelerator Program (MAP) at the University of Melbourne. He was also the former Chairman of the Australian American Leadership Dialogue.
Martin was awarded the E&Y National Entrepreneur of the Year for Technology, Communications, Ecommerce and Life Sciences in 2002 and served on the Growing Technology Based SMEs Working Group of the Prime Minister's Science, Engineering and Innovation Council in 2004 and 2005. He is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
He has a Bachelor of Engineering (Mechanical) degree with honours from the University of Melbourne.
Linda Kristjanson AODirector
Linda Kristjanson is a leading figure in the education sector with a keen interest in entrepreneurial development, having fostered innovation programs and early startup companies throughout her academic career, which spans three decades across Australia, Canada and the United States.
Linda is Vice Chancellor and President of Swinburne University of Technology and is passionate about developing the support needed to help young researchers, graduates and world-class academics optimise their bright ideas.
Under her leadership, Swinburne consolidated its position as an internationally-ranked university known for delivering high quality, relevant research and educating confident, future-ready graduates. With Linda’s guidance, Swinburne established an office in the Silicon Valley in collaboration with CSIRO to provide PhD students with the opportunity to grow and launch in a vibrant innovation precinct. In 2002, Linda was named the Australian Telstra Business Woman of the Year in recognition of her entrepreneurial work in health, science and innovation.
Linda is Chair of the Board of the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre and a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering.
Linda was previously Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research and Development at Curtin University. In 2017, Linda was made an Officer of the Order of Australia, in honour of her distinguished service to tertiary education through leadership and governance roles.
James CroweCompany Secretary & Advisor
James Crowe is a corporate partner at Norton Rose Fulbright specialising in technology-related M&A and venture capital. He has over 25 years’ experience at global firms in Australia and the US.
James has deep technology sector expertise and has acted for global and domestic technology companies, venture capital firms and founders in relation to acquisitions, capital raisings, liquidity events (trade sales and IPOs) and growth strategies. In addition to a law degree (with honours), James holds a degree in computer science majoring in artificial intelligence.
James is a director or advisory board member of a number of early stage technology companies and is an active angel investor. He is the former head of Herbert Smith Freehills’ Melbourne Corporate group.
The Finance, Audit & Risk Management (FARM) Subcommittee
Ian Hanley brings a wealth of diverse experience from more than 25 years in the accounting profession with roles including Chief Executive of a major accounting firm, Partner and Specialist Advisor.
Ian has worked with numerous and varied businesses advising on financing, taxation, business acquisitions, management and operations.
He is the General Manager of Operations and Finance at the Little Group and is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants. He holds a Bachelor of Economics from Monash University and a Graduate Certificate of Financial Planning.
Andrew is a Chartered Accountant and has been a Partner for 12 years with a large accounting firm. He has 25 years’ global experience in the Telecoms, Media and Technology (TMT) sectorsand brings a broad financial advisory and assurance background. He has worked with startup companies through to large multinationals, in areas that include: understanding of early stage business advisory needs, design and operation of detailed systems and controls, privacy, data governance, cash management, going concern focus, stakeholder management, issues resolution, governance and risk management.
He is Chairman of the Board for Good Cycles (a profit generating Social Enterprise which provides employment pathways for disadvantaged youth) and is President of the Sandringham College School Council.