IC Mentor Panel

The IC Mentor Panel has been developed to provide a breadth and depth of expertise to IC Members. An IC Mentor is someone that offers pro bono guidance, advice and support to a business using the relevant experience they have in a particular industry sector.

The Mentor Panel is supported and guided by the Mark Paddenburg, CEO and Dean Alle, Entrepreneur in Residence - also both highly experienced in providing business mentoring and advice to IC Clients.

Please contact Dean if you would like to pursue mentoring services from anyone on the IC Mentor Panel - dean@innovationcentre.com.au or 07 5450 2600.


Dean Alle

Entrepreneur in Residence, Innovation Centre Sunshine Coast

Dean Alle brings a wealth of experience in entrepreneurship, commercialisation and intellectual property management to the role of Entrepreneur in Residence.

Dean co-founded RADIM in 2001 and founded BwiseIP in 2005. These companies were formed to service the growing need for contract commercialisation and IP management. BwiseIP grew to become Australia's largest truly independent business consulting company in this space. Dean Alle as CEO of BwiseIP has led major technology commercialisation projects with Australian Universities and Research Centres, spin-off and start-up companies, and corporates. Prior to this Dean worked as a Patent Examiner for IP Australia and then as Intellectual Property Manager for several start-up companies at the Australian Technology Park Sydney and strategic advisor to commercialisation centres. Dean has a PhD in Atomic and Molecular Physics from the Australian National University.

Dean has a unique collection of skills and expertise spanning the research, legal and commercial aspects of technology commercialisation. Dean believes managing creative people to achieve business relevant outcomes is the critical aspect for harnessing the benefits of innovation. Dean realises the importance of strategic management of technology to extract the greatest value from Intellectual Assets, and that this value may not be purely monetary.

E: dean@innovationcentre.com.au
P: 07 5450 2600


Greg Beaver

Greg uses his experience as co-founder of a number of start-ups to mentor and support other early stage enterprises. He is currently the Principal of 20 20 Innovations and Investments, an advisory service dedicated to sponsoring the successful commercialising Australian innovation, and the founder and executive director of The Pioneer Development Fund, a Federal Government registered Pooled Development Fund, specialising in investing and supporting seed, start-up and early-expansion companies.

He is also a recently retired senior partner of Altezza Partners, a specialist accounting and advisory firm. Greg is an active angel investor and mentor to a number of start-up companies and has seen the full gambit of what works and what doesn’t. He has a track record of bringing together the expertise, networks and capital to commercialise innovation and how to position them for international success.

View Greg's LinkedIn profile


Jimmi Bradbury

Jimmi has extensive experience in the strategic management of businesses. He has managed the international business of Cyril Sweett Group Plc, growing the international arm from 4 to 1,200 staff over ten years. Under Jimmi’s leadership, Cyril Sweett Group Plc now has 44 offices in 18 countries across Europe, Middle East, North Africa, India, Sri Lanka, North and South East Asia and Australia. In addition the company has a further 1,600 people in 26 countries through alliances formed during this same period in Europe, Asia and North America. Much of this growth was achieved through a combination of Mergers & Acquisitions, Joint Ventures, Alliances and Organic growth, all of which was actively managed by Jimmi.

View Jimmi's LinkedIn profile


Tim Eldridge

Tim works directly with the CEO's of established companies, as well as start-up entrepreneurs, to assist them with business development goal setting, strategy development and stakeholder engagement.

He has had over 20 years' experience in working with famous global brands and Fortune 1000 clients at senior levels, and has developed supremely customer-orientated view of their business. Tim helps these companies review their strategic marketing choices, and advises them how to put winning strategies into motion.

View Tim's LinkedIn profile


Sally Ernst

Dr Sally Ernst, founder of the UK and Australian Cyber Security Networks, has over 10 years corporate venturing, internationalisation and governance experience in tech companies, including as part of the start up team of Australia’s largest webhosting service at the time. This experience spans Australia, the UK, China, the Philippines, and the US. Sally has held a number of Board positions, contributed to a number of Government-led forums and roundtables, and is part of an angel investor group.

Both Sally’s MBA and Doctorate specialise in corporate and tech entrepreneurship in a radical innovation context. She has spoken regularly these on topics, more recently with a business perspective on cyber security risk, for world leading Universities, medical schools, industry bodies; and, VC, banking, corporate finance and accounting firms.

Sally is further interested in research having developed and led the Global Entrepreneur Indicator with Entrepreneurs’ Organisation and Standard Chartered, which was regularly quoted in the international press, including the Wall Street Journal, and Financial Times.

View Sally's LinkedIn profile


Mark Ferris

After practicing commercial law in South Africa, Mark spent the bulk of his career in Tokyo, Japan. Over an 18 year period, he founded or co-founded ventures offering services and solutions in Information Technology, Business Process Outsourcing, Market Research and Marketing Solutions. He developed skills in business development, corporate strategy, fund raising and team building and, on three occasions, sold these assets to third party investors resident in USA, Hong Kong and Japan.

After relocating to Australia in 2012, Mark has been active as an angel investor, business mentor and board member. Outside of business, Mark advises a charity he co-founded, composes music and spends family time with his wife and 12 year old daughter.


Matt Forman

Matt is an entrepreneur and senior Internet executive with over 17 years leadership experience. Matt has been the founder and lead entrepreneur with 5 digital start-ups with experience in capital raising, leadership, technology, sales, marketing, product development and business modelling.

Currently he is the Managing Director at Traffika, a highly respected Queensland company specialising in Digital Business Generation for high growth, medium and large enterprise. Matt is also the co-founder and non-executive director of HEARIS, a social media management and analytics SaaS platform for large brands.

View Matt's LinkedIn profile


David Foster

David Foster has had an extensive career in Financial Services spanning over 25 years. This time was spent in a variety of strategic and functional areas and covered a number of geographies in Australia and offshore. His most recent role until December 2013 was CEO of Suncorp Bank, a role he commenced in September 2008 at the height of the financial crisis and involved rebuilding the organization, working out problem assets and regaining momentum and profitability in the business operations whilst achieving leading customer and staff results. 

Prior to his role as CEO of Suncorp Bank David lead Suncorp’s strategy function which included numerous Merger and Acquisition activities including one of Australia’s largest Financial Services transaction – Promina.

David has extensive experience in most areas of Business and Financial management including Distribution, Marketing, Risk, Governance, Financial and Capital Markets. David now based on the Sunshine Coast has commenced a new phase in his career covering a portfolio of activities including Non Executive Directorships and advisory work to small and large businesses.

View David's LinkedIn profile


Peter Grant

Peter has over ten years experience running start-ups as well as a long (20 year plus) history in executive roles across corporate and government. He has worked in various Chief Information Officer positions, as a State Director for Microsoft and as Vice president of Gartner Consulting. Currently Peter is working as an executive coach on 'interesting' consulting assignments. He also provides advice to a number of advisory boards in the university and government sector.

Peter is a Fellow of the Australian Computer Society. He is an Adjunct Professor at Queensland University of Technology and the University of Queensland. He holds a Bachelor of Business and a Research Masters Degree in Information Systems.

View Peter's LinkedIn profile


Nigel Hall

Nigel has an extensive international business background in biotechnology, telecommunications and finance and has lived and worked in the UK, Germany, USA and South Africa before relocating to Australia in 2006.  His first degree was in business and economics and he has a MBA from Clemson University in South Carolina. He was CEO of Highway One, a German Telecommunications business that sold to Telefonica. He has a been involved in raising over $200m finance for fast growing businesses, previously ran a seed capital fund in South Africa and is currently on the advisory board for Terra Rossa Capital, an Adelaide based venture capital fund.

View Nigel's LinkedIn profile


Steve Huff

Steve is a respected entrepreneur and start-up specialist with over a dozen successful start-ups to his credit including Typefi Systems and Sixty Second Parent. He has significant experience growing companies in both Australia and the US, and was named one of America’s most Innovative CEO’s by Forbes Radio in 2008. Steve sits on the board of various organizations, including Typefi Systems, Sixty Second Parent, Online Medical and Xcorio. He holds a Masters Degree in Business and Organizational Development from Western Carolina University and a B.A. in History from Greensboro College.

View Steve's LinkedIn profile


Alan Johnson

Alan is an executive and company director with 30 years experience applying technology to complex business challenges often in safety critical environments. Alan’s key strengths include leadership, executive management, strategic planning, complex procurements, public and private sector markets, mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, Government relations and international business.  Alan has been involved with a number of acquisitions where a larger organisation purchased small enterprises.

View Alan's LinkedIn profile


Brook Kitson

As a qualified engineer with 13 years of professional experience in civil and structural engineering, Brook has extensive expertise in project management, people management and project development. His broad-based design background encompasses civil works for large-scale residential developments as well as structural design for residential, industrial and commercial projects. He is also experienced in hydraulic and hydrological pre-development investigations, engineering planning and financial management, subdivision design and administration.

View Brook's LinkedIn profile


Paul L'Estrange

Paul has a long history of implementing strategies and developing IT organisations for Fortune 500 Companies. He has been Chief Information Officer and Chief Technology Officer for Bacardi Limited, and Director IT, Global Strategy Development for Philip Morris International Management. Paul is a specialist in delivering IT solutions for business transformation, organisational redesign on an international level and running organizations in a culturally diverse environment. He has a proven track record of implementing business models to support growth and cost control strategies.

View Paul's LinkedIn profile


Macushla Montell

Macushla has a successful track-record of building and running businesses, including property portfolios, restaurants, dance studios and fashion labels. Macushla began her first business at 16 years of age and became a property millionaire in her 20s. She is a determined and driven individual with entrepreneurial flair and the skills and passion to make a real difference. Most recently, Macushla has been coaching and training individuals, business owners, entrepreneurs and managers to motivate, inspire and empower.

View Macushla's LinkedIn profile


 Mark Paddenburg

CEO, Innovation Centre Sunshine Coast

Mark has strong experience in business, innovation and regional economic development. As CEO of the IC, Mark works to ensure it meets key objectives and assists the growth and development of innovative, entrepreneurial businesses on the Sunshine Coast.  Prior to joining the IC, Mark managed the Services team at Invest Queensland, the Queensland Government’s investment attraction unit. Over the last two decades, Mark has assisted or worked with Dascom (now owned by IBM), quickbeds.com (now owned by Flight Centre), Tracknology, CAE, Unisys, Lockheed Martin, Digicel Pacific, Youi, Sandvik, ABB, Firewire, Talisman Energy, Air Asia X, Pratt Industries, Venture Commander, Shell, Peregrine Capital, Venture Commander and The Office of Economic Development for the City of Brisbane Ltd.

View Mark's LinkedIn profile


Gideon Shalwick

Gideon is an expert in developing revenue-generating customers through online media, particularly blogs and video content. He is empathetic to the challenges facing emerging entrepreneurs, having bootstrapped five start-ups of his own. Gideon currently runs one of the top blogging training brands in the world and is working on a new business that will assist main stream video content producers create better videos and reach bigger audiences.


Heather Smith

Heather is a Management Accountant, writer, presenter and business mentor. She writes for numerous business publications and is the author of Learn Small Business Start-up in 7 Days, Learn MYOB in 7 Days, and is working on her third book Xero for Dummies; a guide to the cloud accounting solutions. Heather assists businesses to understand their numbers, monitor management reports and key performance indicators (KPI’s) in line with strategic goals. She utilises remote technology to connect with the businesses and is able to provide education, training and support across Australia and beyond. She has a bachelor of commerce from Griffith University in Queensland and is a Fellow and an ambassador of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). Heather is a Certified XERO and MYOB consultant and Registered BAS Agent. 

View Heather's LinkedIn profile


Paul Stewart

Paul is a specialist in small business development having started, resurrected and/or developed five successful businesses of his own over the past twenty plus years. He has experience in running businesses both as the sole owner/director and in partnership with others. He has completed two successful trade sales. Paul holds a Master of Entrepreneurship degree from Adelaide University and a Graduate Certificate in Commerce from Charles Sturt University. Paul’s skills include new business start-up, strategy development and implementation, operations and systems development and implementation, marketing, small business mentoring and coaching, business acquisitions, site selection and lease negotiations.

View Paul's LinkedIn profile