STEM Professional Award

Congratulations to the 2019 STEM Professional Award finalists.

Dr James Tickner

Chief Technology Officer, Chrysos Corporation

Dr James Tickner is Chief Technology Officer and Co-Founder of Chrysos Corporation.

He spent 18 years with the CSIRO where he supervised the research efforts of scientists, students and engineers developing novel X-ray and nuclear technologies to solve challenging measurement and imaging problems. 

He played a key role in building links with industry and successfully oversaw the development, installation and operation of numerous technologies for industrial clients. Key achievements include developing and commercialising the CSIRO Air Cargo Scanner, inventing and implementing new X-ray systems for trace element and mineral analysis, and developing the Chrysos PhotonAssay technology. 

Dr Tickner is a keen advocate of bringing together researchers from different disciplines, countries and particularly from industry and academia. He continues to mentor and supervise the next generation of young researchers. 

He has received numerous awards for his work, including two CSIRO medals, the Australian Academy of Science Frederick White Prize, the Eureka Prize for Science in Support of Defence or National Security, and an ADC Leadership Award.


Dr Gresley Wakelin-King

Consultant, Wakelin Associates Pty Ltd

Dr Gresley Wakelin-King was a graduate geologist in the mid-1980s, making maps in central Australia. Through her fascinating research she learned why 3D spatial relationships are central to geoscience analysis, especially in under-researched remote regions. 

She saw that desert rivers are special, and that landscapes have their own geological story in which events distant in time and space are important to the here and now. The area’s diverse science and pastoral communities taught her about rangelands industries and ecosystems. 

She has worked with the media as an environmental lobbyist and an ABC radio contributor, and later undertook a PhD project on dryland rivers and how they work. She has spent most of her career working in the Lake Eyre Basin, and every new field investigation brings her new river landforms. 

Dr Wakelin-King is passionate about documenting our rangelands geomorphology and believes it will be crucial to future sustainability.

Dr Mark Skanes

Principal Engineer, Dommar Pty Ltd

Dr Mark Skanes has led and delivered STEM-related engineering solutions for more than 39 years, developing startup companies and mentoring STEM professionals and organisations. 

Over that period he has worked in cooperative research centres, senior engineering, senior management, and consultancy positions within defence, electricity and gas utilities, mining and manufacturing, rail, construction, and the public service sectors in South Australia. 

Currently the Managing Director and Principal Consultant for Accu Trax Pty Ltd, Dr Skanes provides innovative STEM-related solutions in engineering management and governance, reliability-centred maintenance, asset management, project delivery and performance improvement. 

Dr Skanes holds a Doctor of Business Administration, an MBA, a Master’s Degree in Maintenance and Reliability Engineering, and an Applied Science degree from the Royal Military College in Canada. He is also a Fellow of Engineers Australia and the Australian Institute of Company Directors and was a finalist in the 2017 University of Newcastle Alumni Awards in the category of National Leadership in business, commerce and infrastructure.

Contact us

SA Science Excellence and Innovation Awards

Department for Innovation and Skills
Ph: (08) 8226 3821

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