Overwhelming Response For CPA Congress

Response for participation at the annual CPA Australia-Fiji Branch 2015 Congress has been overwhelming, says branch president, Shaneel Nandan. The annual congress get underway today at Sheraton Fiji Resort on
20 Aug 2015 10:53
Overwhelming Response For CPA Congress
CPA Congress speakers: Sashi Kiran, Allison Mooney, Justin Smirk, Stacey Ashley, Ben Ryan, Dr Jone and

Response for participation at the annual CPA Australia-Fiji Branch 2015 Congress has been overwhelming, says branch president, Shaneel Nandan. The annual congress get underway today at Sheraton Fiji Resort on Denarau Island in Nadi.

Mr Nandan said latest registration numbers showed well over 500 delegates registered.

“It has gone bigger and better every year. From the time we started, we have seen more than 100 per cent increase in number of delegates,” he said.

“This in itself speaks a lot about the quality and delivery of the congress.”

The keynote speech will be delivered by the Minister for Finance and acting Prime Minister, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.

The theme for this year’s congress will be Business, Strategy, Leadership.

This event will feature a total of 14 speakers of which 10 are from overseas.

Following on from yesterday, the rest of the speaker profiles have been listed below.


Sashi Kiran, Founder of home grown NGO, the Foundation for Rural Integrated Enterprises & Development (FRIEND)

  • She has been involved in development of adult education programmes on good governance, financial literacy, food security.
  • This includes backyard garden establishment, large scale commercial production of grains, signature production of gourmet food products as income generation programme for rural women, youths including deaf and rural farmers.
  • Since its inception, FRIEND has won many international and National awards for its ground breaking work on development and implementation of poverty alleviation programs in the under- served communities.
  • Since the past five years, the organization has been piloting medical outreach programme screening and providing after care for patients of non-communicable diseases, the largest killer in Fiji.
  • This program has received accolades from the World Health Organisation. FRIEND celebrates 13 years of existence this year.
  • Ms Kiran has undertaken post graduate studies in development studies after working in print and radio media.
  • Over the past seven years she has also served on the Advisory Board of the University of the South Pacific Lautoka Campus and serves on the board of Asia South Pacific Bureau for Adult Education (International NGO).


Allison Mooney, CSP

  • “The people interpreter” Allie’s vibrant, entertaining and informative presentation “Pressing the Right Buttons” has made her an international speaking success having wowed audiences world-wide.
  • In the past three years, she has spoken over 50 times in cities around the world.
  • As a multi award winning speaker and author, she has won many sought after prestigious awards such as 3 times winner of Speaker of the Year NSANZ-Auckland.
  • Her list of clients is vast, where as a keynote speaker, she has set conferences alive and buzzing because she helps people think about who they are.


Justin Smirk, Senior Economist – Westpac’s Economics Research team

  • He has close to 20 years of experience in Australia’s Financial Markets. He joined Westpac in 1999 following his early training as an Economist at the Reserve Bank of Australia.
  • He has had a varied experience with Westpac working with and advising traders and dealers, as well as Westpac’s institutional, corporate and small business clients.
  • Mr Smirk spent time in Westpac’s London office as Senior International Economist and had a 12 month secondment as Chief Economist at St.George Bank.
  • He also spent some time as a member of the advisory board of the Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics.
  • Mr Smirk’s areas of interest include the labour market and prices but he also keeps a keen eye on the international economy and in particular the Asia/Pacific region, commodity markets plus the resources and energy sectors.


Stacey Ashley, Managing Director of Ashley Coaching and Consulting

  • Ms Ashley is a Master Coach and leader within the Australian coaching community and holds an impressive array of national and international accreditations.
  • She is also a certified trainer and she regularly shares her expertise with others by delivering the most highly accredited workplace & business coaching programs in Australia.
  • She works with executives, senior management and teams from many of Australia’s leading corporations, along with private clients.
  • Ms Ashley believes we can all achieve our potential and focuses more and more on the creation of Coaching Cultures in organisations, and Happiness at Work, enabling leaders and individuals to bring out the best in themselves and the people around them.
  • Her passion lies in the personal and professional development field, where she utilises the latest thinking in neuroscience and positive psychology combined with ancient wisdom to support the development of complete leadership.
  • As part of her on-going self-development she is also the only coach within Australia to hold three specialised practitioner qualifications in the emerging fields of The Science of Happiness at work, Story Coaching and mBraining.
  • She has an outstanding track record for leading and developing teams across a multitude of disciplines.
  • She is a speaker and corporate story teller who will raise your awareness, equip you with new skills and inspire you to take action.


Ben Ryan, Born in Wimbledon and is the current Fiji Rugby Sevens team head coach.

  • He is the former coach of the England sevens team.
  • He graduated from Loughborough University with a BSc in Sports science.
  • He is a former member of Thames Valley Harriers Athletic Club, where he was a very successful sprinter at school boy level.
  • He is a former Master at St Edward’s School, Oxford where he was master in charge of Rugby and Athletics.
  • During his time at St. Edward’s he successfully introduced A-Level Sports science, was head of the physical education department.
  • As coach of Fiji, Mr Ryan has won six tournaments, two in the 2013–14 season and four in the 2014– 15 overtaking the record set by a former coach, Waisale Serevi who won four Cup titles with Fiji.
  • In May 2015, Fiji was crowned the overall winners of the 2014–15 Sevens World Series after defeating South Africa in the Cup Quarter Final of the 2015 London Sevens giving Mr Ryan his first ever Rugby Sevens World Series title.


Dr Jone Hawea

  • Dr Jone Hawea attained his secondary education at Marist Brothers High School in Suva. His hobbies are hiking, camping, fishing, gardening and cooking.
  • In 2003 he attended Fiji School of Medicine at the University of the South Pacific.
  • In 2011 he furthered his studies in Dip Gen Surgery at the Fiji National University.
  • He is an Associate Director at the Foundation for Rural Integrated Enterprises & Development (FRIEND).


Rajitha Udayanga, Head of data and network security of Bharti Airtel, the third largest mobile operator in world based on subscribers

  • He is responsible for information security policy and governance, risk management and framework design.
  • Mr Udayanga has worked across industry sectors with large organisations, by helping them to design, implement and review security solutions and security and risk management frameworks.
  • He has authored number of research publications.
  • He has a Bachelor in Technology in Engineering from The Open University of Sri Lanka, and an MSc in Information technology from University of Colombo.




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