Media ReleaseFlourishing Oceans06 Mar 2019

Brigitte Smith to lead Minderoo Foundation’s Flourishing Oceans initiative

Brigitte Smith has been announced as the chief executive of Minderoo’s Flourishing Oceans initiative.

Brigitte-Smith-headshot
Flourishing Oceans chief executive Brigitte Smith

Minderoo Foundation is pleased to announce Brigitte Smith as the inaugural chief executive of its Flourishing Oceans initiative.

Ms Smith joins Minderoo from life sciences venture capital firm GBS Venture Partners, where she was co-founder and managing director for twenty years.

Minderoo Foundation chairman Andrew Forrest said an extensive search had identified Brigitte as an ideal leader for Minderoo’s mission to tackle the critical human and environmental challenges facing the world’s oceans.

“I have no doubt Brigitte has the experience, talent and personal values required to lead and build the Flourishing Oceans vision,” Mr Forrest said.

“Her knowledge of building new businesses based on leading-edge science from around the world makes her uniquely equipped to lead the growing team and drive positive, lasting change.”

Minderoo Foundation launched the $100 million Flourishing Oceans initiative in July 2018. The initiative aims to drive ocean clean-up operations, develop comprehensive data and recommended actions on global fisheries, and establish Western Australia as a hub for world-class marine conservation research.

Ms Smith, who commenced in the role last week, said she was attracted to Flourishing Oceans because of its big and important environmental purpose.

“I am incredibly excited to lead a team that is committed to delivering world class research and has the heart and ability to take on some of the most important challenges of our time,” Ms Smith said.

“My vision for Flourishing Oceans is to harness the energy and resources of the incredible team to define and implement solutions to improve the long-term health of our oceans.”

Ms Smith has a Bachelor Chemical Engineering (Honours) from the University of Melbourne, and as a Fulbright Scholar completed a MBA (Honours) from the Harvard Business School and a Master of Arts in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, both in Boston, USA. 

Minderoo Foundation
by Minderoo Foundation
Established by Andrew and Nicola Forrest in 2001, we are a modern philanthropic organisation seeking to break down barriers, innovate and drive positive, lasting change. Minderoo Foundation is proudly Australian, with seven key initiatives spanning from ocean research and ending slavery, to collaboration in cancer and community projects.
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