Office of the Queensland Chief Entrepreneur

The Office of the Queensland Chief Entrepreneur (OQCE) is the first of its kind in Australia with a strong goal – to make Queensland the number one #startupstate in the country.

The OQCE plays a vital role in building and promoting the importance and contribution of entrepreneurship and investment in Queensland.

The role of the OQCE is to:

  • support the development of Queensland’s start-up ecosystem by working with incubators, accelerators and coworking spaces
  • connect with regional and remote Queensland to encourage and foster state-wide entrepreneurship
  • showcase Queensland startup and entrepreneurial talent to local, national and international audiences
  • stimulate and attract local, national and international investment and venture capital to Queensland
  • support local entrepreneurs, startups, and small businesses across the state by connecting them with the right opportunities, people, places, and spaces to help them grow, scale, and create jobs.

On 16 June 2021, Wayne Gerard was appointed Queensland’s Chief Entrepreneur.

Innovation Advisory Council

The Innovation Advisory Council (IAC) was established to champion innovation, connect ecosystem stakeholders, attract investment and build the resource base for accelerating innovation through entrepreneurial action, across Queensland, for better community and economic outcomes.

The IAC is chaired by Professor Rowena Barrett, and together with Queensland’s Chief Entrepreneur, they focus on maximising the support available to help open doors to the expertise and networks our innovation community needs to succeed in the new economy.

The members of the Innovation Advisory Council are:

  • Professor Rowena Barrett – Pro Vice-Chancellor, Entrepreneurship at Queensland University of Technology
  • Mr Aaron Birkby – Entrepreneur in Residence at Queensland University of Technology and Co-founder of Peak Persona
  • Ms Monica Bradley – Director of Purposeful Capital
  • Professor Bronwyn Harch – Executive Director, Institute for Future Environments (IFE) and Professor, Applied Statistical Science, at Queensland University of Technology
  • Ms Sue Johnson – Group Executive Queensland at Transurban Group
  • Mr Nicholas Guest – Principal, Global Private Capital at the Queensland Investment Corporation
  • Ms Julia Spicer – Goondiwindi entrepreneur and Founder and Business Consultant of Engage and Create Consulting
  • Mr Dan Argent – Founder and Chief Executive Officer of UrbanX
  • Ms Amelia St Baker – Young entrepreneur and Digital Strategist at the St Baker Energy Innovation Fund
  • Ms Natalie Cook OAM OLY – Olympic gold medallist and Executive Director Elite Success and Partnerships at the Department of Tourism, Innovation and Sport
  • Dr Christine Williams – Chair Life Science Queensland Ltd and Executive Director for the Women in Economics Network Queensland
  • Mr John Lee – Director-General, Department of Tourism, Innovation and Sport

Former Queensland Chief Entrepreneurs

Leanne Kemp was Queensland’s Chief Entrepreneur from 2018-20, following on from Steve Baxter who held the position in 2017-18, and Mark Sowerby who held the position in 2016–17.

Further information

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