Australia’s leading supplier diversity organisation Supply Nation has appointed Kate Russell as its new chief executive officer to start at the end of this month, replacing Michelle Deshong who has held the position in an interim capacity since February.
Founded in 2009, Supply Nation works to connect 4,300 verified Indigenous businesses on its Indigenous Business Direct platform with more than 740 paid corporate, government and not-for-profit members in every state and territory.
In FY22 there was a 65 per cent surge in total supply contracts enterprises registered and certified by Supply Nation, reaching $3.8 billion.
A certified Supply Nation business must be at least 51 per cent Indigenous owned.
Russell is currently a board director on the NSW Aboriginal Land Council and has previously held government and private industry roles specialising in business relations, knowledge management, minority nation policy, and more.
"Kate Russell brings years of experience in First Nations’ policy, business operations, diversity recruitment, and regional communities, with a proven track record of delivering outcomes," says Supply Nation co-chair Glenn Johnston.
"Kate's background, strategic vision, and passion for driving inclusive business practices positions her well to lead Supply Nation in its mission to champion supplier diversity and promote economic empowerment for Indigenous and diverse-owned businesses."
As the incoming CEO, Russell will be responsible for shaping Supply Nation's strategic direction, expanding its network of certified suppliers, and strengthening relationships with corporate partners.
"I am thrilled to be appointed to lead Supply Nation. My focus will be delivering Supply Nation’s vision of a prosperous, vibrant, and sustainable Indigenous business sector," says the incoming CEO.
"In recent years, we have seen growth in both the corporate and government membership of Supply Nation. I look forward to working with our stakeholders, partners, and the incredible Supply Nation team, to build on this growth."
Are you a founder aged under 40 with an Indigenous or Torres Strait Islander background? If so, we'd like you to know that nominations have opened for the Australian Young Entrepreneur Awards, and we encourage you to apply.
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