The Women in Technology (WiT) association has elected a new president and is preparing to launch its CIO Pathways Program after a successful trial last year.
After the annual general meeting this week, the Brisbane-based WiT appointed Teresa Murphy as its new president.
WiT was formed 1997 to provide networking and professional support to women in the ICT industry, but has since expanded to embrace technology in its broadest sense.
Murphy says WiT first saw a need to promote non-traditional careers for women and to support women moving into decision-making leadership roles, which has led to programs like the WiT Board Readiness Program and then the CIO Pathways Program.
“For those of us that have an influence on the visibility of various career choices, making the most of opportunities when people from industry or research take time out to tell us about their work is mandatory,” Murphy said. “Seeking out the various industry associations, subscribing to their newsletters and going along to some events are all excellent strategies to connect with real people in work to find out more about their jobs and how they got there.”
Murphy is herself a successful technology professional as the general manager of education solutions at local software company TechnologyOne.
“The CIO Pathways Program is designed to provide women and men with a strategy for career progression and prepare them for the challenges they will face and ultimately as future CIOs and business leaders,” she said. “It’s a unique professional development workshop designed to provide IT professionals with a strategy to drive change in themselves, their teams and their workplace.”
“The program was piloted in 2009 and received immense support and positive feedback and it will again be run in 2010.”
Sue Johnston, another WiT board member and former government CIO, has been appointed coordinator of the 2010 Pathways Program. Her day job is general manager of IT consulting and solutions company MicrogenX.
“Sue has also chaired the Queensland government innovation committee and sat on the board of the Queensland government CIO executive council,” Murphy said.
“Her story provides a glimpse of the remarkable professional opportunities for women when they dare to follow non-traditional career paths. Dig deep and there are always challenges, but the vast majority of the female members within WiT would agree that they love what they do and find ways to overcome any obstacles.”
Johnston has worked in IT since the early 1990s and was appointed CIO at the Queensland Department of Premier and Cabinet in 2002, where she was one of only a few women CIOs in the public sector.
More recently, Johnston held the position of national government industry manager at Microsoft Australia where she established the Queensland Government Innovation and Microsoft Fund Committee, which managed a funding program of about $9 million.
“She has been successful at bridging the gap between business and technology and has a burning ambition to represent women in both an ICT and business management capacity and to see their career progression up to the senior ranks of this male-dominated industry,” Murphy said.
“For this reason Sue now leads the successful WiT CIO Pathways Program.”
The WiT association can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org or online: www.wit.org.au.