Our female leaders are the business

By Tilly Brooks

25 February 2020

3 minute read

Update 30 April 2020

Congratulations to Dr Sarah Pearce who today has been announced as 2020 Telstra NSW Business Woman of the Year, and winner of the NSW ‘Public Sector & Academia’ category.

Sarah is delivering world-leading facilities for the international astronomy community and supporting the growth of the Australian space sector in her role as Deputy Director of CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science.

“I strongly believe in trying to leave the world a better place, and that my route for this is through science and technology,” Sarah said.

Well done Sarah!

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Loud and disruptive drum roll please…two of our female leaders have been nominated for this year’s Telstra Business Women’s Awards.

Congratulations Dr Sarah Pearce and Zoe Piper!

Now in its 25th year, the Telstra Business Women’s Awards recognise the most outstanding women who are disrupting the way we do business. Selected from 22,000 nominations, our female stars are using science and technology to solve the greatest challenges.

woman looking at camera in office

Dr Sarah Pearce, Telstra Business Women’s Award nominee 2020, in her office with the ASKAP photo on display

Dr Sarah Pearce, astronomer and space scientist

Nominated for Public Sector and Academia Award, New South Wales

Dr Sarah Pearce is deputy director of our CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science business unit. She is focused on growing Australia’s future in space.

Her career journey has been driven by a talent for bringing people together and turning possibilities into realities.

Sarah leads our involvement in the international Square Kilometre Array (SKA) project to build the world’s largest radio telescopes, and was Australia’s science negotiator for the SKA international treaty.

“I vividly remember wanting to be an astronomer at age 14,” she said.

Sarah also leads CSIRO’s space research program, which includes our Centre for Earth Observation and our share of the NovaSAR-1 satellite facility operations.

And, if that isn’t enough to inspire you into a science career, she was previously a science advisor to the UK parliament. Sarah holds a PhD in X-ray astronomy from the University of Leicester and an undergraduate degree in Physics from the University of Oxford.

Good luck Sarah!

Zoe Piper, tech innovator

Nominated for Public Sector and Academia Award, Australian Capital Territory

Zoe Piper started her career with us in 1998, joining as a Year 11 work experience student. Her work continued with our Information Management and Technology team, right up until 2005.

Zoe spent the next decade working across private equity, procurement, security risk management, industry productivity and manufacturing. She returned to Team CSIRO in 2016.

Zoe lead the development of the IC Global platform, which currently profiles more that 70,000 experts from all fields of research. Her team collaborated with more than 70 partners from industry, research and government in developing the platform.

“We’re on a mission to catalyse innovation by connecting industry challenges with relevant research expertise,” Zoe said.

In addition, the FindHer filter developed for Expert Connect allows anyone to easily find and connect with top females in their specialty.

Go Zoe!

Congratulations to both of our finalists for this fantastic achievement. We wish you both the best of luck.