2013 Telstra Business Women’s Awards WA

Event Date: 
27 September 2013
Perth Convention & Exhibition Centre


Two young colleagues working among the mines owned by the world's largest gold producer, Barrick Gold Corporation, are among 22 leading business women named as finalists for the 2013 Telstra Western Australian Business Women's Awards.

Johanna Cowell, Underground Manager at Barrick's Granny Smith Mine near Laverton, and Emma Jones, who is responsible for ground control of Barrick's nine mining operations across Australia and Papua New Guinea, are two of four finalists vying for the Young Business Women's Award.

Ms Jones is also one of seven finalists for the Private and Corporate Sector Award, joining successful finalists from small businesses and larger corporations, including BOQ, Rio Tinto and Virgin Australia Group of Airlines. Another finalist is Alex Cearns, part owner of Houndstooth Studio that exclusively focuses on pets and animal photography.

The finalists for the Business Owner Award include Julie-Ann Harper, who launched her own publishing business Pick-A-WooWoo from an old tin shed after being unable to find a suitable publisher for her spiritual books for children. The business not only manufactures and sells high quality 'mind body spirit' books and e-books worldwide but supports other authors to self-publish professional, eye catching publications.

Other Business Owner category finalists include Chantal Haskett whose recruitment company has changed the traditional commission based billing model, and Donna McColl who established Happy Feet Fitness to motivate young children to be physically active.

Ms McColl is also a Business Innovation Award finalist, joining four other innovators including HALO Medical Devices founder and CEO Hayley Warren, who developed a new device that measures joint movement and helps recovery from injury, called a goniometer. The goniometer is currently undergoing evaluation in up to 15 clinical studies and is already used by many professionals.

Kate McKenzie, Group Managing Director Telstra Innovation, Products and Marketing and Ambassador of the Telstra Business Women's Awards, said the Awards celebrated the hard work and determination of business women in Western Australia.

"For 19 years we've run the Awards to inspire leading business women to realise their potential and celebrate their success. We believe the 2013 Western Australia finalists are entrepreneurs, innovators and managers who can inspire our nation and the following generation," Ms McKenzie said.

CommBank's Women in Focus program, which opens doors to opportunity for women across Australia, is an Official Partner of the Telstra Business Women's Awards.

Karen James, General Manager, Women in Focus and Affiliate Business Banking said: "Partnering with the Telstra Business Women's Awards for the fifth year is vital to our purpose. The Alumni inspire the community through speaking at our events, sharing their story and expertise online, and mentoring women in the community."

Previous winners of the Telstra Western Australia Business Woman of the Year Award includes three women who also won the Telstra Australian Business Woman of the Year title – Denise Goldsworthy, Managing Director of two Rio Tinto subsidiaries, Hancock Prospecting Chairman Georgina Rinehart, and WildChild founder Leanne Preston.

Winners of the 2013 Telstra Western Australia Business Women's Awards will be announced on Friday 27 September in Perth. The Western Australian winners proceed to the national finals in Melbourne on Thursday 14 November.

For winners across Australia the awards offer a share in $200,000 in cash and prizes.

Finalists for the 2013 Telstra Western Australia Business Women's Awards are:

Business Owner Award

Julie-Ann Harper Pick-a-WooWoo Pty Ltd Nannup
Chantal Haskett Aston Corporation West Leederville
Janelle Marr StepBeyond Business Advisors Subiaco
Donna McColl Happy Feet Fitness Secret Harbour
Rebecca Oates Rebecca Oates Pty Ltd Subiaco

Private and Corporate Sector Award

Tracey Barnes BOQ Perth
Alex Cearns Houndstooth Studio North Perth
Cindy Dunham Rio Tinto Perth
Emma Jones Barrick Gold Corporation Perth
Merren McArthur Virgin Australia Group of Airlines Welshpool
Angie Taylor Element WA Pty Ltd Highgate
Katie Valentine Momentum Partners Perth

Community and Government Award

Amy Barrett-Lennard Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts (PICA) Perth
Sonja Cox Department of Corrective Services Perth
Jane Ensor Department for Child Protection & Family Support East Perth
Fiona Forbes Australian Special Education Principals Association Port Kennedy
Dr Sue van Leeuwen Leadership Western Australia Perth
Margaret Thomas Retirees WA Inc East Victoria Park

Business Innovation Award

Tracey Barnes BOQ Perth
Julie-Ann Harper Pick-a-WooWoo Pty Ltd Nannup
Dr Sue van Leeuwen Leadership Western Australia Perth
Donna McColl Happy Feet Fitness Secret Harbour
Hayley Warren HALO Medical Devices Subiaco

Young Business Women's Award

Johanna Cowell Barrick Gold Corporation Laverton
Kelly Haywood Royal Australian Navy Rockingham
Emma Jones Barrick Gold Corporation Perth
Sarah Kemp Nintirri Centre Inc Tom Price

More information on the Telstra Business Women's Awards can be found at


Telstra Business Women’s Awards
1800 817 536
Add event to my calendar