Our Ambassadors

The following people have committed to help us achieve our objective and achieve 50/50 gender representation in Australia’s parliaments.

Diana Ryall AM

“As an ambassador for Women for Election Australia, I will have more opportunity to encourage and mentor women to seek office in our various levels of government.

“Without a more equal representation of women in our government, we are wasting the talent of women and  losing the advantages of diversity of voice and thought in our community.

“Women bring not only a better understanding of the issues affecting women but also a broad perspective of the issues that will affect the future of Australia.  I hope that my involvement will support more women to enter government which will in turn make our government more inclusive.”

‘I am driven by the desire to make Australian society and workplaces more inclusive for my grandchildren’

  • Founder:  Xplore for Success – driving Gender Equality and Inclusion
  • AFR 100 Woman of Influence 2018
  • Telstra Business Women Award 2016 – NSW Finalist
  • Ambassador:  Women for Election Australia – encouraging more women to stand for political positions
  • Ambassador:  Honour a Woman – increasing focus on national awards for women
  • Ambassador:  Dress for Success Sydney – supporting disadvantaged women achieve employment
  • Ambassador:  Good Return – Working with Disadvantaged people in Asia to regain self-sufficiency

Ann Sherry AO

I have signed on as a WFEA ambassador to help make sure the face of Australia is fairly reflected in our political system. To achieve this we need to increase the number of women in all our elected forums across all political parties.

We currently have too few women in parliaments and governments across Australia and we have even poorer representation of women in key portfolio positions in state and federal politics in particular. The outcome is lack of voice, lack of role modelling for young women and mono cultural debates and discussions leading to poor outcomes.

I believe we need interventions to change this as incremental change is too slow. It requires cultural change in political parties, it requires the setting of hard targets to be achieved in pre-selections (quotas) and it requires a regular refresh of sitting members so they do not get an entitlement mentality to their positions when refresh is needed.

As a WFEA ambassador I will be able to help drive this change.

  • Ann Sherry is one of Australia’s leading business executives with a career that spans Government, Banking and Cruise Tourism.
  • Ann is the Chair of UNICEF Australia and currently holds non-executive roles with National Australia Bank, Sydney Airport, Palladium Group, Infrastructure Victoria, Rugby Australia, Cape York Partnerships, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia.
  • She is an Advisor to and the former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Carnival Australia, the largest cruise ship operator in Australasia and a division of Carnival Corporation & Plc.
  • The Australian Government awarded Ann the Centenary Medal in 2001 and in 2004 she was awarded an Order of Australia.
  • In 2015, Ann was named as the overall winner of the Australian Financial Review 100 Women of Influence Award.
  • Ann devotes considerable energy to her passion for women’s rights (currently as convenor of the MCC STEM group), supporting opportunity for Indigenous communities, personal philanthropy and support of the arts.

Anna Bligh, AC

I am honoured to be a WFEA ambassador to be part of the change needed to see more women elected across all levels of our political system.

I know first-hand the challenges women face in public life, particularly in the first few steps of seeking and achieving election.

The 50/50 target that is set is ambitious however I believe not only is it achievable, it is necessary to ensure a strong voice on the key issues confronting our country.

Dr John Hewson

Academic, economist, businessman, politician, columnist and commentator.

I am honoured to be an Ambassador for WFEA.

I consider gender inequality to be one of the most important economic, social, and ethical issues of significance in Australian society today.

Women urgently need to have an equal and effective voice in Parliament and in government and I can hopefully contribute, through WFEA, to help make this happen.

John is currently finishing two books – ‘ Public Policy Book’ and another as a Collection of major public policy columns and speeches etc.

  • He is currently a Professorial Fellow at Crawford School, Australian National University
  • Professor and Chair, Tax and Transfer Policy Institute, Crawford School.
  • John is an adjunct Professor at UTS Business School
  • Adjunct BCEC Professorial Fellow Curtin University
  • Professorial Fellow, Thinker-in-Residence, and Member Advisory Board, Institute of Applied Ecology at the University of Canberra.
  • He is currently a director at The Sir Ronald Wilson Foundation at ANU.


  • Fellow, Academy of the Social Sciences of Australia (FASSA)
  • Fellow, Australian Institute of Company Directors (FAICD)
  • Fellow, Finance and Treasury Association (FFTP(Hon))
  • Affiliate, The Securities Institute of Australia (ASIA)
  • Fellow, The Hong Kong Management Association
  • Member in the Order of Australia Centenary Medal
  • Woodrow Wilson Fellow
  • Lifetime Achievement Award University of Regina, November 2009
  • Order of Merit, Australian Olympic Committee May 2010