IMAA Announces ‘Female Leaders Of Tomorrow’ Mentees In Sydney And Melbourne

Industry’s top CMOs and media leader mentors to be matched to mentees

Independent Media Agencies of Australia (IMAA), the national, not-for-profit industry association for the independent media agency industry, has announced 16 mentees in Sydney and Melbourne as part of its Female Leaders of Tomorrow programme, that will match the industry’s best mentors to coach these up-and-coming leaders.

The programme is part of the IMAA’s commitment to fostering long-term diversity and inclusivity across independent media agencies nationally.

Female Leaders of Tomorrow launch events were held in Sydney and Melbourne at oOh!media’s offices. Mentees and mentors undertook “speed networking “sessions where each mentee had the opportunity to sit down with each mentor for four minutes to introduce each other and to determine who would be their best fit.

The 16 IMAA Female Leaders of Tomorrow mentees are: 

  • Zoe Amos – Kaimera 
  • Angela Brand – Hotglue 
  • Sue Cant – Affinity 
  • Elly Catchlove Half Dome 
  • Hayley Clarke – Hotglue 
  • Denize D’Silva – Media Republic 
  • Eleni Endt – Adenium 
  • Lenka Kleinova – Hatched 
  • Sally Lawrence – Engima 
  • Kimberley Leopoldo – Hatched 
  • Erienne Lette – Slingshot 
  • Annie Marendaz – The Media Store 
  • Jana Mehrtens – Admatic 
  • Mattie Mould – Apparent 
  • Samantha Murphy – Assembled Media 
  • Olivia Scott – Kaimera

“The media industry isn’t immune to the same issues at large, where there simply isn’t enough representation of women at a senior level. Mentees have the chance to help shape themselves within the independent media community and the world more broadly by taking this opportunity and working with their mentors to become a stronger more effective leader, to be proud of who they are and what they can offer those around them,” IMAA DE&I Council Chair, Angela Smith, said.

“I would like to thank our mentors for their generosity which will make a world of difference to our mentees. We are blessed to have such an impressive group of women in this programme.”

In Sydney, mentors are Cathy O’Connor (CEO at oOh!media), Lauren Joyce (Chief Strategy & Connections Officer at ARN), Nikki Rooke (Sydney Sales Director at Nine), Lara Brownlow (Head of Channel Sales APAC at LinkedIn), Mark Fairhurst (Executive General Manager at QMS), Liam Loan-Lack (Head of Marketing APAC & Canada at CMC Markets), Melinda Petrunoff (Country Manager at Pinterest) and Gaye Steel (Marketing and Content Director Consultant and Academic Lecturer at Torrens University Australia).

In Melbourne, mentors are Andrea Salmon (National Head of Audio Sales at SCA), Peter Whitehead (Chief Commercial Officer at ARN), Natalie Warren-Smith (General Manager – Brand and Channel at Stockland), Emma Fulford (Head of Marketing at Smiggle), Rachel Page (Network Digital Sales Director at the Seven Network) Amanda Connors (Global Chief Marketing Officer at Total Beauty Network), Karl Winther (Chief Marketing Officer at Kogan) and Andrew Wills, (Commercial Director at NOVA).

IMAA CEO, Sam Buchanan, said: “I’d like to sincerely congratulate each mentee who has been accepted into our Female Leaders of Tomorrow programme. Our evaluation panel had the privilege of reviewing many outstanding applications against a set of criteria, and it was a tough decision to finalise the mentees. We were genuinely impressed by the calibre, dedication, creativity, and passion we have within the independent sector, and we are looking forward to watching these women become our leaders of tomorrow.”

The six-month programme aims to create a support network between accomplished industry leaders and their mentees by matching mentors with up-and-coming women in indie media agencies for knowledge-sharing and professional development opportunities.

Through a series of online and face-to-face sessions, mentees will have the chance to learn from the experience of their mentors, while gaining valuable industry insights, expanding their professional networks and enhancing their skill sets.

The programme will be facilitated by Wendy Gower, the trainer and coach behind WeGrow, which specialises in mentoring for the communications industry.

Female Leaders of Tomorrow is exclusively available to IMAA members and designed for individuals who currently hold manager/director positions, with a minimum five years’ experience in any media agency discipline.

Further information is available at:


For further information contact: 

Rochelle Burbury
Third Avenue Consulting
0408 774 577

About Independent Media Agencies Australia

The IMAA was established in February 2020 as a new, national industry body that represents Australia’s independent media agencies. The IMAA promotes the benefits of working with independent media agencies, build awareness and respect for the sector, create a knowledge sharing forum and help build the Australian economy through supporting 100% Australian owned businesses.