Inaugural Women in STEMM Chair announced

Wednesday, 7 November 2018


Professor Billie Bonevski has been appointed as the University of Newcastle’s inaugural Women in STEMM Chair to provide leadership and a voice for the University’s gender equity action plan, in particular STEMM focused initiatives.

Professor Billie Bonevski

A behavioural scientist in the Faculty of Health and Medicine and current leader of the NHMRC-funded Tackling Nicotine Together (TNT) program, Professor Bonevski has is a known advocate for other women and was a passionate Chair of the Faculty’s first Gender Equity Committee (Jan 2015 to Dec 2017). She remains a committed and active member of a Committee which, under her leadership, set the tone for challenging the status quo, advocating for change and deploying strategies to assist women progress in their careers.

Professor Bonevski will assume the role of Women in STEMM Chair for the next three years and will play a key role in leading the initiatives outlined in the University's SAGE Athena SWAN submission, which have been absorbed into the institution's overarching Gender Equity Strategy – Progress to Equity.

"Advancing gender equality demands active, committed and visible leadership and the appointment of a Women in STEMM Chair is a significant development for our institution," Professor Lee Smith, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Faculty of Science said.

"In this pioneering role, Professor Bonevski will be a powerful advocate and I hope she will receive broad support as she establishes what we all hope will be an ongoing and highly sought after role for future leaders."

To complement this role and to support other important diversity and inclusion commitments across all Faculties, such as increased representation of Indigenous staff, each Faculty will establish a new role - the Assistant Dean, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion.  This will ensure that equity, diversity and inclusion commitments remain a priority and an integral part of Faculty planning and decision making.