Our People

The Australia–Japan Youth Dialogue is made up of a broad range of Delegates, Speakers and our volunteer team, bringing emerging Australian and Japanese leaders together to learn, share and contribute to the strong relationship that exists between the two countries.




Essay Contest Winners

 Penny Alexander
  • Delegates
Penny is a Managing Associate at the law firm, Allens Linklaters and a member of the firm’s Energy, Resources and Infrastructure group. Penny specialises in both advisory and transactional work in...
 Shimon Ando
  • Delegates
Shimon Ando is senior adviser of technology integration for Rio Tinto. He is based at their Centre of Excellence for Automation in Perth, Australia. His work is at the forefront of “data science” –...
 Professor Rumi Aoyama
  • Speakers
Rumi Aoyama is Professor at the Graduate School of Asia-Pacific Studies at Waseda University, and director of Waseda Institute of Contemporary Chinese Studies. She has been a visiting scholar at...
 Sonia Arakkal
  • Speakers
Sonia Arakkal is a Policy Fellow at the Perth USAsia Centre. In addition to planning and coordinating a range of program and research initiatives, Sonia directs the Centre's India programs and...
Kira Atkins
  • Essay Contest Winners
Kira Atkins is in her second year of a bachelor's degree of Asia Pacific Affairs at The Australian National University. She is also lead editor at East Asia Forum. Essay title: Fish resource...
 Professor Admiral Chris Barrie, AC, RAN (Ret’d)
  • Speakers
After nearly 42 years in the Navy Chris Barrie retired in July 2002 at the end of four years in command of the Australian Defence Force. Since then he has worked on strategic leadership issues as...
Fran Baxter
  • Speakers
Fran is committed to helping build intercultural competence as a means of increasing deeper understanding amongst groups and individuals, and the value of diversity. She is an intercultural...
 Julia Bergin
  • Delegates
Julia Bergin is a Senior Research Reporter with First Draft APAC. She has worked across digital media as a journalist, audio producer, and researcher with a focus on influence operations and...
 Professor Nick Bisley
  • Speakers
Nick is the Executive Director of La Trobe Asia and Professor of International Relations at La Trobe University, as well as Editor-in- Chief of the Australian Journal of International Affairs, the...
Chris Blackerby
  • Speakers
Chris joined Astroscale as Group COO in August 2017 and leads the global strategic development for the company. Prior to joining Astroscale, Chris served as the NASA Attaché for Asia, the senior...
 Bonnie Bley
  • Delegates
  • Speakers
Bonnie is one of the principal researchers behind the Lowy Institute Asia Power Index, a data-driven project first launched in 2018. The Asia Power Index is the largest comparative assessment of...
 Melanie Brock
  • Speakers
Melanie is Managing Director of Melanie Brock Advisory. With over two decades of commercial experience in Japan, Melanie has developed an excellent network of contacts in Japan’s corporate,...
 D'Arcy Butler
  • Team

D'Arcy Butler »

AJYD Alumni Officer

D’Arcy was a founding member of the AJYD Committee in 2016 and at different times has occupied recruitment, logistics and alumni engagement positions for the 2017, 2019 and 2021 dialogues. D’Arcy...
 Joshua Cabaj
  • Team

Joshua Cabaj »

AJYD Sponsorships Officer

Joshua is a Business Development Manager (Investment Analyst) at the Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade) based in Osaka, Japan. Austrade’s Osaka post operates the...
Dr Sarah Cannard
  • Speakers
Dr Sarah Cannard is an experienced Senior Engineer and Project Manager with over 15 years of demonstrated history working for Nova Systems in the defence and space industry. Sarah is currently the...
 Heather Chai
  • Delegates
Heather is an international relations, advocacy and public relations professional. A former diplomat, she has represented Australia in Tokyo and in Vientiane, as well as at the United Nations. In...
 Claudia Chan
  • Team

Claudia Chan »

AJYD Partnerships Officer

Claudia is a partnerships team officer for Australia-Japan Youth Dialogue who is currently based in Sydney. Furthermore, Claudia is a professional qualified Chartered Accountant specialising in...
Ashley Chandler
  • Delegates
Ashley is a lawyer in the Brisbane office of global law firm Jones Day where she practises in commercial litigation and international arbitration. Ashley has maintained a strong connection to...
 Hayley Channer
  • Speakers
Ms Hayley Channer is the Senior Policy Fellow at the Perth USAsia Centre. Based in Canberra, Hayley produces analysis on foreign and defence policy in the Indo-Pacific, engages with key Australian...
 Meira Chen
  • Delegates

Meira Chen »

MA Graduate

Meira is a MEXT scholar alumni, recently graduating with a Masters of Arts in International Relations from Waseda University. She advocates for empowering and fostering Asia-engaged young...

© 2021 Australia-Japan Youth Dialogue
ABN: 37 614 763 218