Advisory Board

Chairperson – Tess Mateo

Ms. Tess Mateo is an integral investor serving on the Advisory Board of AQAL Capital, a Special Advisor on Gender and Climate to the United Nations, and a strategic advisor to the Joint US China Collaboration on Clean Energy (JUCCCE).  She chairs BPW International’s STEM Taskforce and has launched a real estate group, technology company, and novelty clothing line. As Director in the Office of the Global CEO of PricewaterhouseCoopers she helped co-lead the World Business Council for Sustainable Development’s (WBCSD) Vision 2050 initiative. Having witnessed up close the US and global financial markets restructuring from her position atop an accounting industry leader, Ms. Mateo understands the critical path for transformative collaborative action. With over three decades of restructuring, turnaround and start-up experience advising senior executives across several industries in dozens of countries, she brings innovative solutions and global networks to drive green and inclusive growth. Contributions include The Internet of Women (River Press 2016), Achieving Sustainability: Vision Principle and Practices (Macmillan Reference 2014), Vision 2050, Business New Agenda (WBCSD 2010) and The Roadmap to 2020 Fueling the Growth of Women’s Enterprise Development (Quantum Leaps 2010).  Ms. Mateo holds degrees from University of Michigan and Columbia Business School.

Sue Hurley

Sue Hurley has an MBA from the University of Melbourne and a Masters of Creative Writing from UTS. After almost 20 years in senior management roles in Corporate and Government Organisations such as PWC and KPMG, Sue published her first novel and a number of pieces of short fiction, while making significant contributions to a number of community organisations. Until 2019, she was a proactive Director of Dymocks Childrens’ Charities – an organisation that seeks to improve literacy by providing new books of choice directly to disadvantaged children and schools around Australia. In 2015 she initiated a strategic review that has resulted in a revised Board Structure and significantly improved program delivery. In FY17 Dymocks Childrens’ Charities delivered 33,449 new books, an increase of 47% over the previous year. These books benefited 18,463 children, an increase of 34% over the previous year. She also created and co-ordinate a team of active volunteers from her local community who regularly provide lunches, administrative support and other resources to clients of the Asylum Seeker Centre Sydney in Newtown.

Neil James

Neil has more than 30 years executive management experience with public and private enterprise businesses, across NZ, UK, UAE and Australia. Specialising in technology and innovation, Neil has also developed business, financing and re-structuring plans for businesses in a wide range of industries.

His specialist interest is in the use of technology to add real value to business activities ensuring that it’s the business that gets the value! To support this he has also been actively involved in both capital structuring and capital raising activities for a number of startups including negotiations with bankers and other financiers.

These skills have also lead Neil to be directly responsible for the market and business development of a number of new technology solutions. This unique blend of technical, finance and sales experience has proved invaluable in the ability to creatively solve and articulate solutions to complex business challenges which is reflected in his strong problem solving and business analytical skills.

He has been actively involved in the Entrepreneurship education and research activities at the Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane. He has previously held a fractional position as the Executive Manager, External Relations for The Australian Centre of Entrepreneurship Research, and also lectured in new venture Strategy, Venture Capital and New Venture Growth on the QUT MBA program.

Since 2012 Neil has been actively involved in the Mining Sector, working for 5 years in a number of senior management roles for a Mining Services Contractor, HSE Mining, and since 2017 as a contractor on change, innovation and technology projects for BHP.

Neil has completed an MBA at QUT, with a specialisation in entrepreneurship and innovation.

Alok Kulkarni

Alok founded Cyara with the vision that an easy-to-use CX Assurance platform could help enterprises be confident that they were delivering great customer experiences each and every time, even in a world with rapidly changing customer expectations and an ever increasingly complex technology ecosystem.

Prior to Cyara, he was Director, Solutions Engineering, at Genesys where he led the team that architected contact center solutions for the Asia Pacific market, driving Genesys to the top position in that market. He also held various engineering roles at National Australia Bank, NEC, Lincolne Scott, and Boral Building Technologies.

Alok has an MBA in Entrepreneurship and Technology from Melbourne Business School and a Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical and Computer Systems Engineering from Monash University, Australia.


Juliette-Marie Somerset

Juliette-Marie Somerset is CEO & Managing Partner at Somerset Capital based in Menlo Park, California where she is an investor in early-stage global startups. She is on the Board of Advisors at UniRock Partners, an investment firm, based in Brisbane, Queensland. As a woman in tech leadership she has seats on the Board of Directors and Board of Advisors of technology companies. She is an Advisor at the Norrsken Impact Accelerator in Stockholm, Sweden. Juliette-Marie is a Milestone Maker mentor at the Nasdaq Entrepreneurial Center based in San Francisco and also a mentor at CV Labs based in Switzerland’s Crypto Valley. She is currently a guest lecturer at ESCP Business School in Berlin and recently joined the Board of Advisors at UniRock Partners based in Brisbane, Queensland.

As a global tech investor, she has a focus on three areas of disruptive technology at the heart of today’s global startup ecosystem: AI, Blockchain Technology applications & Fintech and social impact. Disruptive technologies can be used to empower people to drive innovation.

Educated at Yale University and Columbia University she thrives on being a collaborative partner with ambitious company builders and promoting opportunities in technology for women, minorities and LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs. Juliette-Marie shares a passion and commitment to creating a culture of innovation and equality to unlock human potential, particularly in inclusion and diversity. Today, successful global entrepreneurs and tech unicorns are using partnership and collaborative alliances to disrupt new markets and create social value.


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