Thursday 26 August – 9.45am – 10.30am

Shane Fitzsimmons
Commissioner | Resilience NSW

Resilience NSW



Learn more about Shane

Shane Fitzsimmons was appointed as the inaugural Commissioner for Resilience NSW and Deputy Secretary, Emergency Management with the Department of Premier and Cabinet from 1 May 2020.

He is currently the chair of the State Emergency Management Committee (SEMC), the State Recovery Committee (SRC), Board of Commissioners (BOC) and the National Emergency Medal Committee (NEMC).

This appointment followed a distinguished career with the NSW Rural Fire Service of over 35 years, serving as both a volunteer and salaried member.In 1998 he was appointed an Assistant Commissioner with the RFS andhas held portfolio responsibilities for Operations, Strategic Developmentand Regional Management. 

He has most recently been announced as the 2021 NSW Australian of the Year, and the Australian Father of the Year 2020 through The Shepherd Centre.

The role of the ARIC, it’s requirements and expectations of councils

Wednesday 26 August – 9.00am – 9.45am

Stephen Coates
President | Institute of Internal Auditors

What a modern Audit Risk & Improvement Committee looks like, including scope of work, wider stakeholder expectations, main responsibilities, membership, operations and reporting. Considering independence, breadth of coverage, skills required of Councillor and independent members, and specific attributes for the ARIC Chair.

Learn more about Stephen

Stephen is in the business of helping Boards, Committees, and executive leadership make good decisions. He Chairs and is an independent member of a number of Audit Risk & Improvement Committees.

With a background as an experienced internal audit professional, he now engages with governments, leading companies, and not-for-profit organisations as non-Executive Director, Board / Committee Chair, Chief Executive, and Company Secretary.

Currently Immediate Past-President of IIA-Australia, a member of the IIA-Australia Board, a member of the global International Internal Audit Standards Board (IIASB), and the Executive Committee of the Asian Confederation of Institutes of internal Auditors. Stephen leads Boards towards strategy, in line with transparent and accountable governance. He works with organisations to protect & enhance value.

Stephen’s early career involved leading teams in both a private and public-sector context. He has held Partner level roles in advisory and consulting services, technology risk consulting, and assurance services.

Today, as well as strategic Boardroom guidance, Stephen’s focus is on authoritative, independent, and confidential advice to enterprise and technology leadership on delivering strategy, risk, technology and systems and operations performance.



Against all odds – The Beaconsfield Mine Rescue

Wednesday 26 August – 11.00am – 12.00pm

Darren Flanagan
Explosives Expert | Motivational Speaker

On the 25th April 2006 Australia and the rest of the World were stunned to hear about a major mine collapse in Beaconsfield Tasmania. At 5.45pm on the 30th April, rescue workers discovered that Todd Russell and Brant Webb were still alive. What followed was an incredible coordination effort by dozens of rescue workers who were now focused on getting the miners out.

Sitting at home watching this unfold was explosive expert Darren Flanagan. That Sunday night Darren received a phone call that would change his life for ever. So began one of the most amazing rescue attempts in history.

Through story and incredible experience, Darren will show how to incorporate “Reducing Risk” as a way of life. 

Leadership and High Performance in the new normal

Wednesday 26 August – 1.30pm – 2.15pm

Gavriel Schneider
CEO & Principal Consultant | Risk2Solutions

Banking royal commissions, bushfires and COVID-19, we have certainly seen enough demonstrations that the world we live in is VUCA1 – an acronym originally used by the American Military. It stands for Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous. The global stock market meltdown which was a result of the spread of coronavirus reinforces the view that we need to respond better in the future to these unforeseen events as it seems VUCA is here to stay. A VUCA world requires a business’s leadership and strategies to move past simplistic management theory; it is no longer a case of finding the one solution or management tool.

In this session you will learn:

  • Why leadership starts with an internal narrative
  • Understanding social and tribal aspects around leadership and high performance
  • Adaptive strategy and capability development
  • The requirement for strategic and tactical skills sets (STactical development)
  • Developing Dynamic Risk Equilibrium
  • Building a mindset for presilience

    Learn more about Gavriel

    Dr Gav is an acknowledged business leader and specialist in the field of human based risk management and the psychology of risk. He is the creator of the Presilience approach and is a serial entrepreneur and has been running his own businesses since 2001. He has conducted business in over 17 countries and provided a wide range of services for a very diverse client base, ranging from heads of state, to schoolteachers. He is a leading academic and subject matter expert in his field and is a much-sought after International speaker. He has, over the last decade, had extensive experience as a CEO, Trainer and Consultant as well as a Director and Board Member of; for profit, not for profit and community organisations.

    Innovation, Risk Management and Climbing that Icon

    Wednesday 26 August – 3.20pm – 4.05pm

    Simon Pitkethley
    Head of Health, Safety, Environment, Quality and Security | Sydney Bridgeclimb

    Providing an insight into the approach BridgeClimb Sydney takes to innovate and create new products, enhance current tourism activities and keep each and every climber safe.

    The Sydney Harbour Bridge is iconic globally, but as a working bridge and some 89 years old, it has its challenges and this presentation will give you a sense of the pragmatic approach BridgeClimb Sydney takes to manage the risks we face.

    Learn more about Simon

    Simon is a safety practitioner with over 20 years experience having held executive roles in many industries such as Security, Facilities Management, Banking & Finance, Casinos, Hospitality and Tourism, He has a proven track record of developing and delivering strategic change, improved performance, wellbeing, engagement and a robust safety culture.

    Simon relishes the process of growing a prevention culture within an organisation, built on leadership, innovation, credibility, relevance and simplicity; all underscored with a commercial focus that provides pragmatic solutions to operational issues and the momentum towards organisational strategic goals.

    Simon joined BridgeClimb Sydney in January 2019 as part of the executive team and has positioned the organisation to work through the challenges of Covid-19 and Bushfires that both had significant impacts on the Tourism sector.


    Legal Update

    Thursday 27 August – 11.45am – 12.45pm

    Nikki Cassar
    Special Counsel Insurance | Mills Oakley

    Nikki will be talking about the practicalities, realities and legal repercussions to councils when using labour hire employees. She will also provide an update on some interesting judgments handed down since last year.

    Learn more about Nikki

    Nikki has been advising Councils and Statewide Mutual for over 19 years on all things Council, liability and risk management. Over the years, Nikki has acted for Councils on a vast range of matters including disputes arising out of development applications, nuisance (stormwater and tree roots), fallen trees/branches, systems of work, sale yards, contaminated land, slip/trips and falls, dog attacks, road accidents and accidents in playgrounds and skate parks. Nikki also assists Councils with proactive risk assessments and is a regular on the Statewide mock trial circuit held throughout NSW each year.

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