Annual CQUniversity Alumni Awards

CQUniversity takes great pride in the achievements our alumni are making in their world. Their accomplishments benefit both society and the University, advancing the common good and inspiring others. The annual Alumni Awards acknowledge and celebrate these achievements by our outstanding alumni in their professional field or community service activities.

Learn more about CQUniversity's alumni award receipients below and be sure to listen to their individual stories on CQUniversity's How To Change a Life podcast.

Alumni Awardees 2023

Outstanding Alumnus of the Year

Headshot of Bevan Slattery smiling
Bevan Slattery
Tech Entrepreneur
Honorary Master of Business Administration, 2007; Bachelor of Business, 2014

This award recognises a graduate of CQUniversity who has made an exceptional contribution to society and demonstrated the achievement of excellence in a professional context.

Bevan Slattery is one of Australia’s leading entrepreneurs, having founded some of the nation’s biggest technology success stories. His entrepreneurial success is highlighted by having listed a record five companies on the Australian Stock Exchange and receiving many industry awards being inducted into the Commsday and ARN Halls Of Fame. In 2019, Slattery was appointed a member of Australia's Cyber Security Industry Advisory Committee.

In addition to his commercial telecommunication operations Bevan co- founded Biopixel, Australia’s leading production service provider for natural history and animal behavioural sequences; and also the BioPixel Oceans Foundation doing important marine research on the Great Barrier Reef.

Bevan is now focussing more of his time on his philanthropic initiatives through Soda Sustainability including developing 1 million square meters of environmentally tolerant reef to help restore the Great Barrier Reef and other essential ecosystem restoration work including endangered seagrasses and mangroves.

Alumnus of the Year for Industry Achievement

Headshot of Patrice Brown smiling
Patrice Brown
Founder & Director, CQG Consulting
Bachelor of Science (Applied Chemistry), 1992

This award recognises a graduate of CQUniversity who has achieved to a high standard or made an exceptional contribution in their industry or profession.

Patrice Brown is commended for demonstrating significant leadership and resilience to develop an award-winning enterprise and strong knowledge-sharing and capacity-building partnerships in complex and specialised areas.

Founded by Patrice in 2003, CQG is now one of the largest regional environmental consulting businesses in Queensland. Their niche services include impact assessments and approvals, ecology, coordinating waste management following natural disasters and salt field and sugar industry advisory services.

In 2019, Patrice co-founded Tunuba, a Central Queensland Indigenous business which is 50% owned by the Darumbal People to provide employment, training and business development opportunities for Darumbal People.

Patrice is an advocate for protecting environmental and cultural values through partnerships with Traditional Owners, researchers and regional communities, and shares her decades of experience through State and Commonwealth government advisory boards.

Alumnus of the Year for Social Impact

Headshot of Param Singh smiling
Param Singh
Founder & CEO, MoooFarm
Master of Information Systems, 2005

This award recognises a graduate of CQUniversity who has made a sustained positive contribution through their collaborative social innovation work OR who has demonstrated significant social impact to a community or the University through volunteering.

Param Singh is commended for his significant achievements in helping farmers in India with technology and tools to move them out of poverty. In 2022, Mooofarm won the prestigious Dairy Innovation award in the socio-economic category at the World Dairy Summit. The MoooFarm mobile application has been downloaded by more than 1.8 million farmers to connect with qualified veterinarians, order farm inputs, access financial services, manage their farm & cattle and engage with subject matter experts to make dairy profitable.

During COVID-19 lockdowns in India, Param also launched the Tech for Good charity (Australia) and partnered with Canva’s Force for Good initiative to train and support 15,000+ young girls in digital skills. Param’s work has contributed skills transfer to tens of thousands of people and are providing tangible financial outcomes through enhanced employability and increased profitability to lift people out of poverty in India.

Alumnus of the Year for Early Career Achievement

Headshot of Clarissa Sempel smiling
Clarissa Sempel
Associate Lawyer, Access Law Group
Bachelor of Laws, 2019

This award recognises a graduate of CQUniversity who has demonstrated significant career achievements or positive impact on a field of endeavour or community cause within five years of graduation from CQUniversity.

Clarissa Sempel is commended for exemplary early career achievement including leadership through coaching and mentoring, pro-bono activities and personal and workplace development.

She exemplifies the experience of many CQUniversity graduates in having to overcome difficult circumstances to follow her study and career plans. She began working for Access Law Group at the same time as starting her Bachelor of Laws at CQUniversity, progressing from a full-time administration position while studying, to being appointed to the role of Associate Lawyer in 2021. In 2023, Clarissa started a new position as a Lawyer at Our Lawyers.

In addition to her legal career, Clarissa is dedicated to supporting others through her association with Junior Chamber International (JCI) - a global, non-profit organisation for young people to develop leadership skills, and make an impact in local communities through volunteerism aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Clarissa has progressed from membership and leadership roles in her local branch to being the President of the National Board.

We congratulate all Alumni Award winners for their outstanding contributions and achievements. If you know alumni who are making a difference in their industry, role or community, please let us know so we can recognise them. Alumni can also be nominated by others or self-nominate for the awards using the Alumni Award Nomination Form.

Outstanding Alumnus of the Year - Dr Marjad Page Bachelor of Human Movement Science 2002

Commended for influencing public policy, participation in and contributions to ground-breaking medical research, and activism and mentoring in the medical community.

Alumnus of the Year (Industry Achievement) - Aidan Baron Bachelor of Science (Hons ) 2017, Graduate Certificate in Clinical Ultrasound 2018

Commended for contributions to best practice, evidence-based patient diagnosis and care; and leadership in research and translation of knowledge, in the field of Emergency Medicine & Paramedicine.

Alumnus of the Year (Social Impact) - Selina Tomasich Master of Management (Human Resources) 2007

Commended for sustained positive contributions to improved quality of life and career opportunities for those in impoverished circumstances, through the provision of hairdressing skills and resources.

Alumnus of the Year (Early Career Achievement) - Nareeta Davis Bachelor of Laws 2017

Commended for achievements in the legal sector, representative roles across Queensland and impact through volunteering.

Outstanding Alumnus of the Year - Sheila Doyle Master of Information Systems, 1996

Commended for her influential leadership in global organisations, championing change, innovation and technology to deliver impressive solutions.

Alumnus of the Year (Industry Achievement) - Kumar Parakala Master of Business Administration 2000, Master of Information Systems 1993

Commended for driving growth as a global leader in Digital Transformation, and Information and Communications Technology (ICT), with a focus on modernisation.

Alumnus of the Year (Social Impact) - Tandi Kuwana Graduate Diploma of Mental Health Nursing 2017

Commended for her advocacy in the field of mental health, specifically for people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Alumnus of the Year (Early Career Achievement) - Jodie Mlikota Graduate Certificate of Social Innovation 2018

Commended for her entrepreneurship and energy in founding a successful and innovative start-up business ‘Gathar’.

  • Outstanding Alumnus of the Year - Mr Sean O'Donnell Master of Business Administration, 1996

Commended for his role in promoting good governance and inclusiveness throughout his career in the banking and information technology sectors, and his significant leadership contributions to philanthropic causes and community organisations.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Industry Achievement) - Mrs Tanya O'Shea  Bachelor of Psychology, 2011 and Master of Business Administration, 2016

Commended in recognition of her significant contribution to regional employment, disability, mental health, and training services through exceptional leadership and management, including the implementation of social innovations.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Social Impact) - Mr Leslie Lowe Bachelor of Environmental Science, 2015

Commended in recognition of his work to preserve cultural knowledge, and to develop modern business models to share this knowledge through education and sustainable Indigenous industries.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Early Career Achievement) - Dr Do Van Huong Doctor of Philosophy (Sciences, Engineering and Health)

Commended for his contribution to research, education and innovative practical application of cattle embryo transfer technologies, and enhanced relationships between the Vietnamese and Australian beef industries.

  • Outstanding Alumnus of the Year - Mr Jason Titman Bachelor of Business, 1991

Commended in recognition of his entrepreneurial spirit and business acumen across multiple industries, and significant community contributions.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Industry Achievement) - Mr Wayne Blair  Bachelor of Business, 1994

Commended in recognition of his significant contribution to Australian film and performing arts.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Social Impact) - Mrs Jade Collins  Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Business, 1999 and Master of Business Administration, 2008

Commended in recognition of her work to create gender equality in business leadership through consumer empowerment and social change.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Early Career Achievement) - Dr Lily Ishak Doctor of Philosophy (Sciences, Engineering and Health), 2017

Commended for her contribution to research, education and innovative practical applications of environmental sustainability.

Awarded for his exemplary legal career and significant community contributions.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Industry Achievement) - Mrs Tanya Orman Bachelor of Arts, 1997    

Awarded for her significant contribution to Indigenous Media, advocacy and role modelling for Indigenous people in Australia and Internationally.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Social Impact) - Mr Robin Amatya Bachelor of Business, 2008

Awarded for his work to empower Nepalese women through Social Enterprise opportunities.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Early Career Achievement) - Mr Paul Tabone Bachelor of Music Theatre, 2008

Awarded in recognition of significant success in pursuing an international Opera and Musical Theatre career.

Alumni Awardees 2017

No awards this year due to realignment of award timing

Alumni Awardees 2016

Graduate Diploma of Management, 1992 and Master of Business Administration, 1993

Commended for leading with integrity and a commitment to excellence in governance, and for his role in expanding humanitarian programs across his organisation to make a significant impact in India.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Industry Achievement) - Mrs Sherene Devlin

Bachelor of Nursing, 2003

Commended for her outstanding contribution to the field of nursing and primary health care, recognised as the first nurse practitioner to specialise in Psoriasis Management in Australia.

Master of Business Administration (General Management), 2000

Commended for his long-term volunteer leadership in Education and the Arts, and for advancing the commercial relationship between Australia and Hong Kong through his significant contributions to the Australia Chinese Association of Hong Kong.

Bachelor of Music Theatre, 2006

Commended for her outstanding achievement in regional performing arts through the creation of a successful online children’s educational entertainment platform.

Alumni Awardees 2015

Graduate Diploma of Management, 1988

Commended for his work and enduring commitment to advancing the well-being of communities, with a particular focus on the most vulnerable members, in Australia and internationally.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Industry Achievement) - Ms Joan Warner
  • Master of Business Administration (General Management), 1999

Commended for her leadership, recognition of opportunities, drive for innovation, and advocacy activities in the Australian and Asia-Pacific commercial radio industry.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Volunteer Contribution) - Mr Joel Buchholz
  • Bachelor of Education (Honours-Secondary), 2003

Commended for his significant and beneficial volunteer contributions of time, energy and knowledge to the betterment of CQUniversity and regional communities.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Early Career Achievement) - Dr Aleicia Holland    

Bachelor of Science (Biology) (Honours), 2009 and Doctor of Philosophy (Sciences, Engineering and Health), 2014

Commended for her significant early career achievements, and contribution to policy advancement and practical improvements in a field of research of international importance.

Alumni Awardees 2014

Graduate Diploma of Management, 1997

Commended for passionate advocacy and a history of strong leadership for women's and children's rights worldwide.

Master of Learning Management, 2006 and Bachelor of Science (Psychology), 2016

Commended for her commitment to developing leadership potential in the education sector, and for her focus on continuous improvement and innovation throughout her career.

Bachelor of Engineering (Civil), 1992, Graduate Diploma of Management, 1994 and Master of Business Administration, 1996

Commended for his significant and beneficial volunteer contributions of time, energy and knowledge to CQUniversity, the Central Queensland region and the Engineering community.

Bachelor of Engineering (Co-op), 2005

Commended for his significant leadership in the Engineering industry, and his continued involvement with the CQUniversity Engineering program, early in his career.

Alumni Awardees 2013

Master of Sustainable Development, 2007

Commended for exemplary participation on the Rockhampton Regional Engagement Committee as a member and Chair. His ideas have created improved accessibility to CQUniversity for our communities.

  • Alumnus of the Year (Early Career Achievement) - Mr Chris Shields

Bachelor of Engineering (Co-op), 2004

Commended for his commitment to pursuing development opportunities, leading to outstanding achievements early in his career. Chris is acknowledged as an excellent role model with natural leadership abilities and immense potential to continue to excel in his vocation.