We are delighted that these speakers will be joining us at the Technology Safety Summit this year. More speakers will be added as they are confirmed, so check back soon.

Keynote Speakers

Ginger Gorman, Social Justice Journalist

Ginger Gorman is a fearless and multi award-winning social justice journalist. She has an innate ability to connect and communicate with some of the most interesting and marginalised people in our community. Ginger works hard to translate those untold stories into powerful and insightful journalism.

As a result of a story she published via the ABC back in 2010, Ginger and her family became the subject of an international online hate campaign.

Once the stream of cyberhate – and the fear –  died down, she decided to find and interview serious Internet trolls. Ginger was shocked to discover the ways in which cyberhate can wreck women’s lives.

This strange journey into the underbelly of the Internet has made her in-demand as an expert on the topic. Not only has Ginger written extensively about trolling and social media self-defense – especially for women – last year she presented a TEDx talk on the subject. She also featured in Tara Moss’ “Cyberhate” series on the ABC.

Ginger’s most recent four-part investigation into cyberhate and online misogyny for Fairfax mastheads was published to a hail of media and public commentary, firmly focusing the Australian public’s attention on cyberhate and how to stop it. She’s now writing a book on the topic, which will be published by Hardie Grant in 2019.

Sami Makelainen, Telstra

Sami has been involved in building the online and mobile worlds since mid-1990’s. Having participated in design and development of one of the first full-service online banking platforms, Sami spent a number of years hands-on with various aspects of the mobile business, from developing mobile payment solutions in North America to defining network systems architectures for Nokia in Finland. Since 2009, Sami has been at Telstra Corporation in Australia, currently in charge of Technology Foresight at the Chief Technology Office. Sami holds an MSc degree in Computer Science from the University of Helsinki and lives with his family in Melbourne.

Julie Oberin, National Chair, WESNET

Julie Oberin is the CEO of Annie North Women’s Refuge and Domestic Violence Service in regional Victoria, Australia.  She has worked in the domestic and family violence sector for more than 25 years. Julie has published, delivered conference papers nationally and internationally on domestic and family violence and homelessness, and undertaken important research on women’s domestic and family violence services across Australia.  She is an experienced practitioner both working with women and children who have experienced violence, and also with men who have used violence against family members.

Julie is the National Chair of WESNET (the Women’s Services Network), Australia’s leading women’s organisation working on the elimination of domestic and family violence. She is also the contract manager of AWAVA, the Australian Women Against Violence Alliance. Julie currently chairs or sits on a range of other committees and boards including the Victorian Statewide Steering Committee to prevent violence against women and their children; Chair of the Loddon Campaspe Family Violence Advisory Committee; Regional Chair delegate on the Victorian Statewide Family Violence Advisory Committee; and Australian Board member of the Global Network of Women’s Shelters.

She was a member of the COAG Advisory Panel on Violence Against Women and co-chaired the Technology Round Tables. Julie also regularly attends the Commission on the Status of Women at the United Nations and has presented at several side events on technology-facilitated abuse and its intersection with violence against women.

Erica Olsen, Director of the Safety Net Project, NNEDV

Erica Olsen is the Director of the Safety Net Project at the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV). Since joining NNEDV in 2007, Erica has advocated on behalf of survivors of intimate partner violence by educating and advocating victim service providers, policy makers, and technology companies on issues of technology abuse, privacy, and victim safety. She has provided trainings to technologists, attorneys, law enforcement, victim advocates, and other practitioners in the United States and internationally. Erica leads the team’s ongoing efforts to address how technology impacts survivor’s safety and privacy.

Erica’s prior work at the NYS Coalition Against Domestic Violence included writing curriculum and training statewide on a project focusing on the intersection of domestic violence and disabilities. She also worked in local domestic violence and homeless shelter/housing programs, conducted research on welfare reform initiatives, taught GED classes for individuals who were court ordered into a mental health facility, and participated in several international social work programs. Erica has a Masters in Social Work from SUNY Albany and a Certificate in Non-Profit Management from the Center for Women in Government and Civil Society.

Cindy Southworth, Executive Vice President, NNEDV

Cindy Southworth, Executive Vice President at the U.S. National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV).  She joined NNEDV in 2002 after founding the Safety Net Project in 2000 to address technology and violence against women. Ms. Southworth has worked closely with over 30 corporate leaders including 3M, Airbnb, Avon, Facebook, Google, Twitter, and Verizon. She has presented internationally in Australia, Austria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Lithuania, Mexico, the Netherlands, Portugal, United Kingdom, and at the United Nations. She makes frequent media appearances on CNN, MSNBC, and other major radio, television, and print media outlets.

Through the Safety Net Project, Ms. Southworth works with private industry, state and federal agencies, and international groups to improve safety and privacy for victims in this digital age. She has presented over 500 trainings to more than 43,000 advocates, technologists, corporate employees, and justice professionals, including over 50 international presentations and keynote addresses. She has testified before Congress and is on many task forces and committees that address justice, privacy, technology, and safety.

Ms. Southworth has a Masters Degree in Social Work and has worked to end violence against women for over 25 years at national, state, and local advocacy organizations. She is a founding board member of the Global Network of Women’s Shelters and co-led the 2nd World Conference of Women’s Shelters in February 2012. She has spent the past 19 years focusing on how technology can increase victim safety and how to hold perpetrators accountable for misusing technology. Ms. Southworth serves on the Trust/Safety Advisory Boards of Facebook, Airbnb, Uber, Pinterest, and Twitter.


Susan Anderson, General Manager, Australia & New Zealand, Uber

Susan is General Manager for Uber, responsible for leading Uber’s ridesharing business across Australia & New Zealand. With a diverse background spanning marketing, strategy consulting, retail, tech and startups in Australia and the UK, Susan is a proven global leader with a passion for innovation.

Susan joined Uber in late 2016 as General Manager for Uber Eats Queensland, spearheading the company’s rapid ANZ expansion strategy and launching 10 cities in nine months. Most recently she has been Uber Eats General Manager, ANZ Cities, delivering exceptional growth, enhancing customer experience plus building an engaged and high-performing team.

Prior to joining Uber, Susan was UK Country Leader for Amazon Prime Now where she was responsible for launching and overseeing Amazon’s one hour delivery service. She also led a number of senior roles in Amazon’s Consumables business, including Baby Category Leader and Subscribe & Save program lead. Before a period at Bain & Company in both UK and Australia, Susan started her career in the UK in consumer finance marketing.

Susan holds a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Economics and Management from New College, University of Oxford.

Karen Bentley, National Director SafetyNet Australia, WESNET

Karen Bentley is the National Director of Safety Net Australia, WESNET, which examines the intersection between domestic violence and technology. Karen helped establish the program in Australia in 2011 by working with the US-based Safety Net program. A tech enthusiast and strong women’s advocate, she combines both passions to lead and manage WESNET’s work on technology safety. Major projects include the WESNET-Telstra Safe Connections program, which provides smartphones to women impacted by domestic and family violence; and the Safe Technology for Women project that provides advanced technology safety training to frontline agencies.

Karen has been working with the violence against women sector for nearly 20 years. Karen’s career began in the Australian Public Service where she worked in different departments over 14 years, including as a senior executive in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, where she managed the Partnership Against Domestic Violence program. She went on to run a successful management consultancy business for 10 years, working predominantly with government and NGOs. She has held board positions in domestic/family violence or sexual assault services. Between 2008-2012 she also worked in a high security women’s refuge in central Victoria.

Travis Bright, Thorn

Travis leads Thorn’s (wearethorn.org) work focused on building safety systems to help apps and services find and remove child exploitation content. He worked as a PM at Microsoft and Amazon, and more recently at Facebook and Google, where he created anti-abuse systems with a focus on protecting vulnerable groups. He believes technology can make the world safer with a personal goal of creating a “no-fly zone” across the entire Internet to eradicate child sexual exploitation.

Kylie Brosnan, Independent Social Researcher, Ipsos

Kylie Brosnan an independent social researcher for Ipsos who spends lots of time listening to people who have experienced violence in their homes, within their families or communities. Kylie has designed and managed complex data collection methodologies using innovative, technological solutions and in particular has used digital technologies to overcome language and literacy barriers with Humanitarian Migrants, Prisoners and Remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to enable them to have a voice and have their views considered in Government policy and decision-making. Her research interests include the advancement of knowledge in digital survey research methods and interactive techniques used to collect data from mainstream and vulnerable target audiences. Currently working in remote Indigenous communities in Queensland, Australia to support a community-led research and co-design of a ‘Safe at Home’ project. This is funded under the Women’s Safety Package of the Australian Government, a program to help reduce domestic and family violence across the Nation, commissioned by the Queensland Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women. Kylie has an undergraduate degree in business and is currently a PhD candidate with the University of Queensland.

Ella Bourke, WESNET

Ella is a member of the WESNET Safety Net Australia Team, where she contributes to program design, delivery and management, and provides tech-safety advice to front line workers and survivors via 1800 WESNET. Over the last two years, she has played a key role in growing the reach and impact of the Telstra Safe Connections smartphone program and managing the national network of participating organisations.

In addition, Ella holds a Bachelor of Laws/Bachelor of International Relations and supports the National Director with stakeholder engagement, communications, and strategy. Ella has also led the development of WESNET’s research project with the University of Melbourne examining the extent to which family violence practitioners believe abusive technology behaviours are fear and distress inducing, and indicators for physical relationship violence or partner homicide.

Before joining WESNET, Ella worked in competition regulation and consumer protection for over five years, including as a senior investigator in enforcement operations.

Helen Campbell, Executive Officer, Women’s Legal Services NSW

Helen Campbell is the Executive Officer of Women’s Legal Service NSW, a state-wide specialist community legal centre for women. She is a lawyer with over 20 years’ experience in the community and public sectors. In addition to her legal qualifications she is a Master of Women’s Studies and holds a Diploma in Frontline Management.

In 2011, she obtained funding to establish an online legal support service for community workers assisting women escaping domestic violence. This innovative model, now known as Ask LOIS, is now an effective way of connecting with workers in rural regional and remote areas, with over 200 active members. Ask LOIS is free to join here: http://www.asklois.org.au

In 2014, she received a grant from the Australian Communications Consumer Action Network to research and produce information guides, training and resources to assist women experiencing technology-facilitated stalking and abuse. These resources can be accessed here: http://www.smartsafe.org.au/legal-guides

Libbi Cunnington, Disability Technology Manager, 1800RESPECT

Libbi Cunnington is the Disability Project Manager for 1800RESPECT and has been responsible for developing an app for women with disabilities to respond, recognise and seek assistance for violence and abuse. Libbi has an extensive background in the not for profit sector, have managed a community legal service, and large family violence project in the housing estates in Melbourne’s inner north, and was Regional Manager for The Big Issue Street Soccer for half the nation’s street soccer programs.

Over the last three years, Libbi managed AAPLAY a referral service that links people with disabilities into sport and recreation programs through web, social media and chat options and over the last twelve months worked in collaboration with Women with Disabilities Australia, WWILD an expert advisory group of women with disabilities and the digital agency Tigerspike.

Libbi is passionate about identifying best practice and inclusive engagement with women with disabilities to deliver tech products that can increase women with disabilities safety, independence and connectedness and encouraging women with disabilities to take on their own careers in the tech and IT sector.

Jessica Di Blasio, Image Based Abuse Program Manager, Office of the eSafety Commissioner

Jessica is from the Office of the eSafety Commissioner, which launched an image-based abuse portal in mid-October last year. Jessica is in the Image Based Abuse team as a Senior Investigator. This team receives reports about image-based abuse from Australians and endeavours to quickly remove intimate images that have been shared online without consent. Jessica previously worked for a period in the U.K. investigating complaints about the condition of social housing and in a similar role back in Sydney, registering Native Title claims. Jessica is legally qualified.

Detective Brian Franke, President and Founder 2C Solutions, LLC

Detective Bryan Franke is a 30-year veteran of the Longmont Police Department. He is currently assigned to, and was instrumental in forming, the Cyber Crimes Unit, as well as the development of the Boulder County Computer Forensics Lab; a combined computer forensics lab made up of personnel from four agencies. He has been qualified as an expert witness multiple times. Detective Franke has performed forensic examinations on computers, cell phones, GPS units and other portable devices such as tablets, external HDD and various types of flash storage. He is the President and Founder of 2C Solutions, LLC; an organization dedicated to training other professionals on how to investigate, prosecute, and proactively monitor the use of technology by probation clients, as well as how to deal with various digital crime/technology based investigations. 2C Solutions, LLC

Heidi Guldbaek, National Trainer, WESNET

Heidi Guldbaek is a National Trainer for the Safety Net Project at WESNET, where she provides education and expert consultation to practitioners on technology-safety issues that impact survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. Heidi contributes to technology safety curriculum and content, and advocates for the needs of survivors in policy development and legal reform.

Heidi has worked in the anti-violence against women sector as an educator, advocate and activist since 2007. Prior to joining WESNET, Heidi worked towards overcoming women’s structural oppression and injustice in her role as the National Law Reform Coordinator for Women’s Legal Service Australia. She has extensive experience in working with victims and victim advocates to ensure that the voices of women escaping violence are heard in policy, program and legislation development.

Heidi is also a member of the Everywoman Everywhere Coalition; an international coalition of practitioners and survivors. She serves on the Mandatory Training and Prevention Education Sub-Committee, working to advance a grass-roots driven international convention on the prevention of violence against women.

Heidi has a Bachelor of Behavioural Science and a Master of Human Rights degree.

Diarmaid Harkin, Criminologist, Deakin University

Dr. Diarmaid Harkin is a criminologist and Alfred Deakin Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Deakin University. Dr Harkin is currently investigating the consumer spyware industry with Dr Adam Molnar (Deakin University) in a project funded by the Australian Communication Consumer Action Network (ACCAN) and partnered with WESNET. This project explores the emerging world of consumer spyware with a goal of developing counter-spyware strategies to ensure digital privacy and autonomy. His other research projects include an investigation into the work of private security companies with family violence services. Since 2015, Dr Harkin has been cataloguing and examining the various collaborations between security companies and family violence services across Australia, inquiring as to whether these experimental new partnerships improve the safety and security of victims/survivors of family violence. Dr Harkin also has an active project exploring the challenges and difficulties facing police organisations when responding to cyber-crime.

Kara Hinesley, Head of Public Policy, Government, and Philanthropy, Twitter

As Twitter’s Head of Public Policy, Government, and Philanthropy for Australia and New Zealand, Kara Hinesley works with government policymakers, regulators, and civil society groups on a diverse range of tech and digital issues. She holds legal credentials in the United States and Australia, is an accredited mediator, and was previously a media and policy adviser with over ten years of experience working within the digital start-up and technology sector before joining the team at Twitter.

Kaofeng Lee, National Trainer, WESNET

Kaofeng Lee is a National Trainer for WESNET Safety Net Australia, where she provides education and expert consultation to practitioners on technology-safety issues that impact survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. Kaofeng develops technology safety curriculum, writes resource guides for practitioners and survivors of abuse, and has trained more 10,000 practitioners in the United States, Australia, and internationally on issues of technology abuse, privacy, and victim safety.

Prior to joining WESNET, Kaofeng was a Deputy Director of the U.S. National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) Safety Net Project. In her nine and a half years with NNEDV, Kaofeng worked with victim service providers, technology companies, and policymakers to improve safety and privacy for victims of intimate partner abuse. She has written Congressional testimony, administrative regulatory comments, and participated on committees that address privacy, technology, and safety.

Kaofeng’s previous professional experience included working as a bilingual advocate for a local domestic violence program, editing for a publications and design agency, and providing project management for a top 5 accounting firm, where she learned that listening is most important, the Oxford comma should reign supreme, and obsessing over details is totally okay. Kaofeng has a Masters in International Relations from American University and a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Communication from Iowa State University.

Angela Lynch, CEO, Women’s Legal Service QLD

Angela is the CEO of Women’s Legal Service in QLD a statewide specialist legal service that provides legal advice, information and advice to women concerning issues of domestic violence, family law, child protection and sexual violence matters.  Across her 24 year career at Women’s Legal Service (WLS) Angela Lynch has made significant front-line contributions to the prevention of domestic violence.

Angela is a member of the Domestic and Family Violence Death Review and Advisory Board that makes recommendations to the QLD Government about systemic issues concerning domestic violence deaths and is on the current Australian Law Reform Commission advisory panel assisting with their inquiry into family law in Australia.

Angela has a passion for law reform and making the legal system more responsive to issues of domestic violence and sexual violence.

Robert Merkel, Lecturer, Monash University

Robert Merkel is a Lecturer in Software Engineering at Monash University.  He has appeared on ABC TV and radio, as well as other national media outlets, as an expert on technology security and privacy issues.  He has advised WESNET on technology safety issues.  He is currently conducting research on spyware detection.

Rosalie O’Neale, eSafety Women, Office of the eSafety Commissioner

Rosalie O’Neale manages the eSafetyWomen program for the Office of the eSafety Commissioner.

eSafetyWomen aims to empower Australian women to manage technology risks and abuse and take control of their online experiences. It provides practical information, advice and tools, as well as training for frontline domestic and family violence specialist and support staff.

Rosalie has many years’ experience in the development and delivery of online safety education programs. Her work has included the development of major content-rich websites and teaching resources. She has also a long-standing involvement in the conduct of research into how children and adults use technology, and how they perceive and manage the risks associated with it.

Most recently Rosalie managed development of eSafetyWomen-online training for frontline workers, to facilitate greater access for frontline workers who may not be able to attend in-person training, particularly those in rural and remote areas.

Rosalie has a particular interest in the development of programs addressing online behavioural issues, the role played by peers and by bystanders, and the development of digital literacy and digital citizenship skills.

Rosalie has on many occasions represented the Office (and its predecessors) in the media, and at conferences in Australia and internationally.

Rosanna Smith, Expert Advisory Group Member, 1800RESPECT

Rosanna Smith lives in Brisbane and is a client at WWILD (Working alongside With Women with Intellectual and Learning Disabilities) and has been involved with WWILD for 6 years. Rosanna has a son who is 7 who is her most important focus.

Rosanna’s passion is to help advocate for people with disabilities to speak up and to have a voice. Sexual assault and violence is Rosanna’s main concern when it comes to women with disabilities and she has been able to use this focus to contribute to this new digital product for 1800RESPECT. Rosanna has been an integral part of the project as a member of Expert Advisory Group and has enjoyed being a part of the strong group of women with disabilities.

This new app is to help those women with disabilities who are at risk or have been sexually assaulted to understand that violence and abuse is never ok and to give these women options for safety . The app is available to many women with disabilities whether they have a vision impairment, learning disability, brain injury, or physical disabilities. Rosanna is looking forward to a future as an advocate and dedicates her life to help others in need.

Elly Stirling, WESNET

Elly Stirling is a member of the WESNET Safety Net Australia Team, where she offers advice and information on technology safety issues to front-line practitioners, stakeholders, and survivors of domestic and family violence and sexual assault. Elly advises on a wide range of issues, including account security, location tracking, and mobile spyware. Elly also facilitates in-person trainings on smartphones and safety to organisations working with women experiencing technology facilitated abuse and family domestic violence and sexual assault.

In addition to providing expert advice and consultation on technology safety issues, Elly supports the Telstra Safe Connections Smartphone Program by working closely with Safe Connections local agencies across Australia, ensuring that each agency has smartphones available for their clients and responding to queries relating to the program.

Before joining WESNET, Elly worked within independent financial services and has years of experience helping Australians manage their finances and work toward achieving their financial goals.