Meet our team
Chief Operating Officer
Alan is fortunate enough to have a role that crosses all aspects of the incubator and is involved in both the day-to-day running of the building and supporting the Cicada team in making Cicada the home of deep tech in Australia.
Alan has a finance background and has worked for global companies in senior roles located in Australia, Germany, Luxembourg and the UK.
Facilities Operations Manager
AJ is responsible for all aspects of facilities management here at Cicada. For over 18 years AJ has overseen the daily operations of building maintenance, suite refurbishments, major infrastructure projects and managing the various trades and services to ensure compliance is met across this awesome heritage building.
AJ collaborates with the Cicada team to ensure our residents needs are met and that Cicada is the place to be if you're a deep tech startup.
Director External Engagement
With over 15 years at Cicada Innovations, Britt understands all facets of incubator management. She is responsible for curating relationships with key stakeholders to ensure valuable connections are made across the ecosystem to support our residents and the development of the Australian deep technology sector
Prior to Cicada, Britt held management positions spanning media, technology and government, gaining significant experience in the implementation of greenfield support centres, business process re-engineering, event, contract, operations and project management.
Cristina Casaprima Ferrer
Community & Events Manager
As part of the community team, Cristina writes about the magic that happens within the four walls of Cicada and beyond. Her goal is to support residents and community in every step of their journey by creating meaningful experiences and events for them to connect and learn.
Communication has been at the heart of her career, working first as a journalist and later discovering her true passion of communications and startups. Back home in Spain, she helped build Europe's first industrial startup accelerator.
Director Partnerships & Business Development
Ingrid leads Cicada’s commercial and strategic partnerships, developing new business opportunities with government and industry partners that will benefit Cicada and the deep tech ecosystem we support. Ingrid is an economic development professional with twenty years experience working within state and federal government at a strategic level, developing sector strategies and at the coal face delivering practical support to assist business growth.
Ingrid vast experience spans industry development, innovation programmes and international trade and investment.
James is the number guy. Responsible for the accounting operations of the Cicada, ensuring efficient finance resource allocation towards the necessities of our highly valued deep tech resident companies. From preparing monthly management financial reports to ensuring financial controls and compliance are always adhered to. James manages the company’s tax affairs, performs and manage accounts payables and receivables functions effectively, and last but not least, makes sure we all get paid on time.
Head of Space Tech
Julie talks all things space and leads the National Space Industry Hub, the home of the growing space ecosystem in Australia. When she is not running our space commercialisation programs or on the look for exciting new space startups, you may find her at one of our many space events, connecting the ecosystem and advocating for Australia's growing space industry.
Julie has an engineering background and experience working on innovation projects and supporting space entrepreneurs for organisations like Airbus and ESA.
Head of Technology
Leading Cicada’s Climate & Industry Tech, Hebbat has worked within areas of Heavy Industry, FMCG, MedTech and Life Sciences from product inception to launch.
Hebbat has over 20 years experience in innovation and business transformation with a proven track record in successfully implementing large-scale complex engineering, marketing, commercial and digital strategies to deliver value and growth with strength in stakeholder alignment.
Program Coordinator: Space & Deep Tech
Hela supports our Space and Deep Tech programs and startups. With an engineering background, a master’s in communication, and a passion for design, Hela curates the programs to the needs of innovators, combining both technical and commercial knowledge.
With experience in international development, Hela has worked with government agencies and entrepreneurship ecosystems in the United States, Tunisia, Morocco, Jordan, Senegal, Dubai & Angola to drive entrepreneurship and innovation.
Head of HealthTech
Katja overseas all our activities across the health sector, which covers new innovations and companies in therapeutics, diagnostics, medical devices and software as a medical device. As a researcher and founder herself, Katja understands the challenges of marrying science with entrepreneurship and shares her lived experience to help other healthtech innovators succeed.
A collaborator at heart, she enjoys opening the right doors for people to step through to make a real impact with their ideas and projects. Katja believes that knowledge should be accessible for people to be able to continuously innovate and grow.
Lilli De Kantzow
Health Program Manager
Lilli is passionate about building the customer-centric, sustainable, and socially-conscious businesses of the future. At Cicada, she is part of the health tech team and dedicated to bringing Australia’s world-class health and medical research to the international stage through the successful commercialisation of health tech innovations.
You'll find Lilli designing and organising the many workshops, courses, and seminars we run to support health innovators. Prior to Cicada Lilli held a number of program manager roles and was a startup founder.
Reception & Office Coordinator
Mat is your first point of contact when you arrive at Cicada Innovations. He provides concierge support for all our residents needs, as well as looking after the day to day running of the incubator and supporting the entire Cicada.
Previously Mat has worked in sales and supporting roles across film, television, and entertainment and for NBC Universal, Fox, AFTRS.
Chief Executive Officer
Our team is headed up by our CEO, Sally-Ann Williams who previously spent 12 years with Google Australia’s R&D team where she was responsible for leading Google’s efforts in startup engagement and research collaborations.
Sally-Ann is an experienced Non Executive Board member currently serving on the boards of Cicada Innovations, Qudos Bank, Data61, NSSN, and AusOcean, Chair of the Computing Advisory Board at ANU, as well as the advisory board member of the Heavy Ion Accelerator NCRIS Facility, a member of the Centre for Entrepreneurial Agri-Technology governance committee, and a member of the NSW Government Tech Central Advisory Board.
General Manager – Community & Communications
Sian leads our community and comms efforts, supporting deep tech startups, connecting the broader ecosystem, and celebrating and spotlighting deep tech innovation and achievements.
Sian has 13 years experience building and working technology startups; as a founder, operator, coach, and community builder in Australia and the UK. Day to day you’ll find her meeting with founders, making introductions, designing community experiences, and writing articles and content to help educate founders and the broader ecosystem.
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