Jennifer Conley is founding CEO of the Geelong Manufacturing Council, an initiative of a group of highly innovative companies and organisations aimed at accelerating the growth of the advanced fibre and composites industries in the region.
Jennifer has studied and implemented successful collaborations between industry, research and government since her immersion in the challenging world of free trade negotiations in the early 2000s. Following a career as a journalist and senior writer for Australian newspapers, she became a business advocate in Singapore and Melbourne, plunged into the sphere of international trade policy and influence. It was the beginning of an enduring passion for improving conditions for Australia’s small and medium sized enterprises, and especially for the nation’s innovation economy. From 2011 until 2017, she was chief strategy designer, then inaugural Executive Director for the Australian Advanced Manufacturing Council, the first program to raise awareness of the value of Australia’s advanced manufacturing sector. Her experience in government relations, trade and diplomatic communications, and thought leadership programs, has inspired a deep respect for the power of cross-disciplinary and cross-cultural collaborations. She was appointed CEO of the Cluster in May 2019.