Prominent AGSM Alumna receives Honorary Doctorate

Wednesday, 30 May 2012  Features

In an address to a graduating class of Australian Graduate School of Management students, Lucy Turnbull AO spoke about the importance of family, philanthropy, and how studying at the AGSM empowered her to achieve in the business world.

Lucy Turnbull was recognised by AGSM in a graduation ceremony at the University of New South Wales on Friday, where she received an Honorary Doctorate of Business.

"I think that studying for my MBA gave me the confidence to think I could tackle many things in the wider world than I would have had if I had not gone beyond my law degree, or legal practice. For me, studying an MBA was really empowering," said Mrs Turnbull.

An urbanist and supporter of Australian technological innovation, Mrs Turnbull described how a strong desire to live a meaningful life had inspired her to work in the philanthropic sector. "I currently chair an Australian ASX listed biomedical company which is rolling out a large 800 patient trial across three main geographical areas - Australasia, North America and Europe. The product being developed is CVac, a treatment for women with ovarian cancer, which, we hope, will be able to significantly extend the lives, and the quality of the lives of the women with this condition."

Mrs Turnbull provided insights into leadership and management: "Management is about how well you can engage, understand and communicate with others - and that depends on nurturing a high level of emotional intelligence and empathy- to be part of the team and at the same time have the focus and drive to help to lead your organisation in the direction it needs to go.

"One thing I would encourage everyone in this room to think about is this..... always keep an open and curious mind, never stop learning and challenging the way you do things, and the way things are done," she said.

Since completing her MBA at AGSM in 1984, Mrs Turnbull has become a very prominent Australian business woman and company director. She was the first woman to be elected Lord Mayor of Sydney and held this position from 2003-2004.

Mrs Turnbull has also been active in the not-for-profit sector. She Deputy Chair of the Committee for Sydney, Deputy Chair of the Biennale of Sydney and is a board member of the Redfern Foundation. For many years she chaired the Sydney Children's Hospital Foundation and also chaired the Salvation Army's Red Shield Appeal. She is a board member of the Australian Technology Park, Redfern and the Sydney Metropolitan Development Authority.