I am a Civil Engineer with Traffic and Transport as my areas of expertise. I started my career in the UK working on a mix of civil design projects and traffic studies, including a large O&D study where we had the police stop the traffic so that we could interview the drivers.
What is your current role?:
I am currently a sole practitioner but I have long term relationships with a few companies that I contract to on a casual basis. This gives me great flexibility in working hours and lets me pick and choose the work that I find interesting.
What first attracted you to get involved in the transport industry?
I am a classic engineer and love puzzles and building things. I still build Lego models including the Bucket Wheel Excavator, which is the largest Lego Technic set. So I started by designing and then constructing roads but quickly moved towards more of the planning side of things. I found I had a good understanding of traffic and it went from there.
Could you explain some key opportunities in your career and how they contributed to your development?
That is a very good question. Early in my career, Ranford Road Station Precinct was the preparation of a report into the possible location of a transport interchange on Ranford Road, Canning Vale. It included a preliminary design of the transport interchange to give land requirements for a change to the MRS. This was a key opportunity as it gave me some responsibility for a project as a Consultant and exposure to Public Transport Authority, who were pleased with my work, and I have worked on a lot of public transport projects since.
Sometimes it is simply taking opportunities, not necessarily for a work project, which show others your strengths. So being on the AITPM committee and organising a successful technical presentation can be important to your development. Budgeting your time and organising other people are important skills.
What has been/will be your involvement with AITPM?
That is an easy question to answer, as I include this in my CV when appropriate.
I have been a member of AITPM since July 2007.
I served on the AITPM WA committee in 2008 and 2009, which included assisting the 2008 organising committee for the National Conference in Perth.
I presented one of the 21 papers at the 2008 National Conference. I subsequently presented at the 2014 and 2015 National Conferences.
I also attend technical presentations when I can.
What has been a memorable moment in your career?
In October 2002 I was part of a team traveling to Dili, Timor Leste, to investigate the suitability of Timor Leste as a location for an onshore supply base for the proposed development of the Sunrise gas field. I was responsible for investigating the condition of the infrastructure, including transport facilities for road, ship and air, and power supply. The week-long visit to Dili included meeting government officials and inspecting the infrastructure, in particular transport facilities, road, ship and air, and power supply.
What I remember is that things are not always as they seem. The road system was surprisingly good but only because of previous occupying forces from the Japanese in World War II through to the Indonesians.
I also remember watching the news the week after I arrived back in Australia and there was a bombing in Dili right where we had been, so you never know what is going to happen.
What are your personal and/or professional career plans for the future?
My personal goal is to have the skill and strength to ski Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
My professional goal is to help train the upcoming engineers and planners to understand the importance of self-checking. I have been trying to do this for the past 20 years with mixed success but it remains a fundamental part of being a professional.
Do you have any advice you would like to share to professionals in the transport/traffic industry?
Don’t neglect pedestrians, they have different needs to cyclist. Every journey has some part as a pedestrian and includes people of all ages and levels of mobility.
Do you have any advice or reflections a career in transport and traffic for women in the industry?
Surround yourself with people, both personally and professionally, who are supportive of you and your ambitions.