The Institute Public Service Excellence Awards

Mon 15 October 2012

Further information and media available here.

On the 15th October, IGPA was privileged to have the Hon. Gary Gray AO MP, Special Minister of State Minister for the Public Service and Integrity give a lecture on the Future of the Australian Public Service. It was nearly a full house in the Ann Harding Conference Centre at the University of Canberra, a sign of the caliber of the guest lecturer. After a warm introduction from the Vice Chancellor, Professor Stephen Parker, Hon. Gary Gray touched on many areas which he believed were the key to sustainability of the APS including the importance of collaboration and the avoidance of short term cost cutting measures. He also stressed the value on drawing on APS employee’s capabilities to remain agile and innovative. He provided some insightful ideas to really get the audience thinking.

Following the conclusion of the Hon. Gary Gray’s lecture, IGPA hosted the inaugural Public Sector Excellence Awards, a celebration of achievement for 6 public servants at different levels of governance whose contribution to their respective fields has been exceptional. Master of Ceremony, Professor Mark Evans introduced and congratulated each recipient with the audience loudly applauding at such deserving winners. This year, all the recipients were women, all of whom will perhaps help set a benchmark for their male colleagues to aspire to. The women all work in areas where the Institute has itself been involved in recent times, but reflect the depth of talent across the public sector. The recipients of the awards were:

Glenys Beauchamp PSM

Adjunct Professorship for outstanding public sector leadership
Glenys was appointed Secretary Department of Regional Australia, Regional Development and Local Government on 21 December 2010. Prior to this appointment she was Deputy Secretary, Governance, in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet. In this role she was also the Commonwealth Co-ordinator General oversighting the rollout of the infrastructure components of the Government’s Stimulus Plan.
Her other Commonwealth appointments include as Deputy Secretary in the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA) with responsibility for child support reform and early development of the paid parental scheme and, coordinating Australian Government support to the 2009 Victorian bushfires (Glenys was awarded a Public Service Medal for this work).
Prior to joining FaHCSIA in 2002, Glenys was Deputy Chief Executive of the ACT Government Department of Disability, Housing and Community Services and Executive Director with the ACT Department of Health. Other executive positions in the ACT Government involved transport reform, electricity, gas and water reforms, environment policy, and housing.

“Glenys has been awarded this excellence award for the outstanding leadership skills that she has consistently exhibited in different roles at different levels of Australian government. Glenys has played a central role in attempting to solve some of Australia’s most difficult public policy problems and she has done this with great skill, diligence and integrity”.
Professor Meredith Edwards (Chair, IGPA's Public Service Awards panel)

Pam Davoren

Adjunct Professorship for the promotion of public sector excellence in combating social exclusion and enhancing strategic policy capability in state government.
Pam is the Deputy Chief Executive in the Chief Minister and Cabinet Directorate of the ACT Public Service in Canberra and has wide ranging experience in public sector governance and public policy development. She has played a crucial role in developing and facilitating policies to combat social exclusion in the ACT. In addition, she is playing an important role in change management following the implementation of the Hawke Review.

“Pam has been awarded this excellence award for the outstanding work that she has done in both combating social exclusion in the ACT and in enhancing policy capability in state government. Pam’s creative policy leadership has been integral to the government’s recent successes in this thorny area of public policy.”
Professor Meredith Edwards (Chair, IGPA's Public Service Awards panel)

Ruth Goldsmith

Honorary Fellowship for excellence in the promotion, design and implementation of sustainable development planning at the local level.
Ruth Goldsmith is the Local Planning Manager of Penrith Council. Ruth has led by example in developing and sharing better practice in sustainable development in municipal local government. This has involved advocacy of a broader understanding of sustainable development which moves beyond narrow cost benefit analysis to quality of life and wellbeing issues. She is a past winner of the Excellence in the Environment Award and is currently setting national standards in the development of livability measures for metropolitan cities.

”Ruth has the crucial ability in good policy-making of taking a contested academic concept - in this case sustainable development - and turning it into something of practical use which improves the lives of members of her community. This is a unique quality which we are celebrating today”.
Professor Meredith Edwards (Chair, IGPA's Public Service Awards panel)


Megan Lancaster

Honorary Fellowship for excellence in collaborative governance with citizens and stakeholders
Megan Lancaster is currently Director of Stakeholder Engagement at the Murray Darling Basin Authority. Megan has worked at all levels of government including Local, State and Federal, as such she has a unique perspective on how different levels of government view their roles in engaging with local communities and the challenges of doing this effectively.

After the devastating 2009 Victorian Bushfires Megan worked for the Victorian Bushfire Reconstruction and Recovery Authority (VBRRA) as the Marysville Community Engagement coordinator. Megan said her job description was to coordinate the Community Planning process. In reality she came face to face with the challenges of local leadership, delegated decision making and competing agendas. Megan said she felt privileged to have been given the role and is very thankful to the Marysville community who taught her how much she still has to learn.

“The Awards Panel see Megan as an exceptional example of an emerging 21st century public servant. She recognizes the importance of genuine collaboration in public value creation and that we can only solve many of the intractable problems that we are confronting with the active support and involvement of the citizenry and local communities. She therefore views her role as an empowering rather than a disempowering one. Megan also seeks to develop strong working relationships with knowledge institutions on the basis that the more we know about a problem and how it has been understood nationally and internationally the better our decisions are likely to be”.
Professor Meredith Edwards (Chair, IGPA's Public Service Awards panel)

Carmel McGregor

Adjunct Professorship for the promotion of public sector excellence.
Carmel is the Deputy Secretary People Strategies and Policy in the Department of Defence. She joined the Department in March 2012. Carmel's previous position was that of Deputy Australian Public Service Commissioner (APSC).

Prior to joining the APSC in 2008, Carmel was Deputy Secretary Client and Corporate Services in the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) from 2005. Whilst in DIAC she led global client service reform and a major organisational and cultural change program. In this role, she was responsible for client services, including policy review and service delivery operations for DIAC on and off shore. Carmel also managed a large change agenda in legal services, people services, financial and parliamentary service to support the client service reforms.

Carmel also held the position of General Manager Employment, Disability and Education at Centrelink where she managed delivery of employment and education programs and led the implementation of the Welfare to Work reforms. Prior to this Carmel was General Manager People and Corporate Performance in Centrelink where she re-engineered the human resource, leadership development and organisational design functions to support business delivery for the largest service delivery agency in the APS.

From 1999-2001 Carmel lived in Paris where she worked as a consultant for the Public Management Service of the OECD with key involvement in international for a on modernising government. Carmel is currently Australia's representative on the OECD's Public Governance Committee. She is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management, a Fellow of the Australian Human Resources Institute, Acting President of Institute of Public Administration Australia in the ACT, a member of Australian Institute of Training and Development and a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

“Carmel has been awarded this excellence award for her outstanding contribution to the promotion of public sector excellence and in particular the work that she has done in enhancing the quality of service delivery in Australia and in advancing the position of women in the Australian public service”.
Professor Meredith Edwards (Chair, IGPA's Public Service Awards panel)


Deborah May

Honorary Fellowship for her research and advocacy on gender equity in the workplace
Deborah May is a Fulbright Scholar, graduating from the only business school in the world specifically designed for women, Simmons Graduate School of Management, Boston, Massachussetts, USA. Deborah developed her coaching skills in Boston, while working with diversity firm, Ibis Consulting Group. She is one of Canberra’s most experienced coaches, an alumnus of the Institute of Executive Coaching and Institute of Human Excellence and has a particular passion and expertise in coaching women to achieve career and leadership success.
She is on a number of departmental coaching panels currently coaching individuals at all APS levels, including up to Secretary and Deputy Secretary levels. In addition, Deborah coaches many executive clients across the private and tertiary sectors. In recent times Deborah has conducted research into the perspectives, practices and biases involved in the promotion of women in the workplace, and developed strategies to improve the prospects of women in their careers with a number of agencies, including the Australian Treasury.

Deborah is passionately committed to advancing women and has specific expertise in developing women’s leadership and creating diverse workplace cultures. Her interest in gender and diversity was sparked during her 10 year career with IBM when it was an issue yet to be addressed.

“Deborah has been at the forefront of promoting gender equity in the workplace in Canberra especially at the Executive level through her practical contribution and research in this area which we would like to celebrate here. She has worked as an executive coach to many senior women and their male colleagues, developed and facilitated numerous women’s leadership and gender awareness programs, helped organisations develop more women-friendly, inclusive workplace cultures, and most recently launched an on-line resource site for women. Deborah's research on the mobilization of unconscious bias against women in the workplace is proving particularly influential in helping organizations to develop strategies to ensure that women realize their true potential free from inequitable cultural constraints.”
Professor Meredith Edwards (Chair, IGPA's Public Service Awards panel)


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