About us

Our Story

Australia’s cultural diverse population is drawn from more than 300 ancestries and is visible in everyday life. But if one views the leadership circles of many major institutions in our nation, the rich tapestry of cultures and ethnicities of representation suddenly disappears.

DAWN is the voice for diversity and inclusion. We aim to connect emerging leaders from culturally diverse backgrounds with senior and executive leaders from mainstream institutions through our online community, face to face events, and workshops in partnerships with corporate Australia and mainstream institutions.

DAWN create genuine and moving experiences in a safe and nurturing environment where emerging leaders can unlock their talent and build the confidence to step up to leadership roles that will help Australia grow and prosper.

Meet our Team

Change Agent

Named one of AFR’s Top 100 Influential Women in Australia, Dai has two decades of storytelling skills and experience working within mainstream institutions. Dai was born in Saigon, Vietnam and spent years in refugee camps in South East Asia before being accepted for resettlement in Australia, arriving with her mother and two younger sisters in December 1979.

As a former award-winning journalist, film-maker and broadcaster with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), Dai has a unique understanding of the challenges that people of culturally diverse backgrounds face in progressing their leadership positions in public and private organisations.

Dai currently serves on the Board of Multicultural NSW and on the Advisory Board of the Australian Vietnam Youth Leadership Dialogue (AVYLD) and Chair of the South West Regional Advisory Council.

Making Ideas Happen

Margaret is a passionate program delivery specialist with a proven track record in bringing to life large scale and critical projects/events in ambiguous operating environments with corporates and social enterprises both locally and internationally. With a strong bias towards action Margaret has a reputation of someone who gets things done.

Margaret has worked both in Australia with her most recent stint at Macquarie Bank and overseas in Events and Logistics. Currently Margaret is a senior member of the Haymarket HQ team. Haymarket HQ is Australia’s first dedicated co-working space with a strategic focus on Asia. A not-for-profit dedicated to showcasing and harnessing Asian-Australian talent, innovation and leadership.

Mr Do It

Mr just do it, a passionate, committed & slightly obsessive individual, who was an early influencer on DAWN. He has rejoined DAWN as a platform to expand “Inclusion” and re-invision the future direction for DAWN in a new era.

As an entrepreneur who runs a boutique Creative Digital Agency Sii Studio Pty. Ltd., with clients like the Westpac group, Rams, St. George, Thredbo, etc, He brings a wealth of Strategic experience from Branding, Marketing, and Executions. Re-focusing DAWN’s effort to provide a platform for diverse voices to be heard.

As a Chief Strategist, the important roles of finding new audience to DAWN’s Platform will be the key. Taking from his commercial experience to enable to switch from targeting converted to un- converted audience.

Number Ninja with a Blackbelt in Microsoft Excel

A practicing Chartered Accountant, Fardad’s passion for business is matched only by his drive to achieve the best outcome for his clients. A strong believer that accountants should do more than just crunch numbers, Fardad’s practical and hands-on approach is what makes him stand out. As a self-confessed “jack of all trades”, Fardad’s experience ranges from all things tax, accounting & audit to business management & consulting.

Fardad has over a decade of experience in his field, helping individuals and business achieve their goals. After joining the One Solutions group, Fardad established One Accounting, and has been changing the way we see accountants ever since.

Working with DAWN, Fardad will be navigating us towards achieving our strategic objectives by ensuring we are well informed when making critical business decisions.

Legal Eagle

Michael is a corporate and commercial lawyer at PwC  Legal with 15 years of experience and a reputation for helping clients navigate complex strategic issues, whether they be mergers and acquisitions, important negotiations or strategic corporate transactions.  He is delighted to use his experience to help organisations which are genuinely contributing to making Australian society a more diverse and integrated place to live.

As the son of a 1st generation migrant, exceptional sole parent and working mother, and the husband (and business partner) of a 1st generation migrant, “boat person”, amazing lawyer and exceptional wife, Michael has grown up with an understanding of the challenges faced by those of diverse backgrounds, lifestyles, wealth and education.  He keenly believes that we all play a part in creating greater opportunities for those of diverse backgrounds, and…when we succeed…. we all reap the rewards.

Meet our Advisory Committee

Katie Calvey is an Australian public policy specialist who has dedicated most of her decade-long career on developing government reforms which have been instrumental in driving social change and positive outcomes. Her experience includes providing strategic advice on complex and diverse issues ranging from education policy, social justice to legal reform.

Katie has advised and worked for a number of high performing organisations including the Office of the Australian Prime Minister, NSW Education Standards Authority and the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses for Child Sexual Abuse. At the Royal Commission, Katie contributed to researching and writing its two volume Interim Report which detailed its work since establishment of investigating institutional child sexual abuse in Australia. As a result of the Interim Report, the Royal Commission successfully persuaded the Australian Government to agree to extend its duration and funding to continue its work of public importance. 

As the daughter of Vietnamese refugees who migrated to Australia in the 1980s, Katie is personally devoted to promoting issues concerning equal opportunity and social justice in society. Since 2015, Katie has been involved in diversity and inclusion advocacy with DAWN through leading initiatives like the Asian Australian Leadership Conversations. 

Sally loves immersing herself in new cultures and has lived and worked in both Asia and the Pacific. She has more than a decade of experience working in media, communications and policy across a range of fields including: employment, ageing, international development assistance and higher education.

Growing up in Cabramatta in Southwest Sydney, Sally had always assumed cultural diversity was an integral part of Australian society. It wasn’t until she started working in politics that she realised the assumption of a thriving multicultural society was not a view held by all Australians. It was during this time she saw how deeply divided the population is when it becomes to immigration.

But it was also during this time that she witnessed the incredible spirit and fight many in migrant communities have, they have fought and clawed their way to Australia for their children to have a better life. In turn they have contributed to Australia’s economic growth and enriched our society. Sally currently has a one-year-old son and she looks forward to the day when she can take him to the Federal and State Parliament Houses to see governments who truly reflective our society.

Katrina grew up in the Liverpool and Mount Pritchard areas.

After completing her tertiary education in Banking and Finance, Kat began to carve out her career with the Commonwealth Bank as a general ledger officer. She later became Head of Operations/Senior Manager with CBA, and was in charge of International Migrant and Multicultural Banking team located internationally and around Australia.

While working full time she managed to obtain her second degree in Business Management/Operational Risk. With over 20 years’ experience across a variety role in Retail Banking and International Financial Services, Kat can be proud that she has managed to establish successful new business units which have generated increased revenue and market share.

Kat specialises in Customer Service Experiences, risk, change and people management with strengths in innovating, inspiring others through coaching and mentoring.

Kat is inspired by the concept of DAWN and felt that it was time to give back to the community, especially in Sydney’s South West where she grew up. Kat wants to see that Australian Asian women are recognised and be able to voice their views, concerns on major policies and decisions that impact the community in which they live.

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