Our Board

The Beyond Zero Emissions Board ensures that we are a well-functioning, sustainable organisation that supports its people while fulfilling its mission.

The Board is appointed by members, and brings diverse skills including investment, philanthropy, energy and climate expertise, communications and engagement and legal. The Chief Executive Officer reports to the Board.

Eytan Lenko, Executive Chair

Eytan Lenko is the Chair of Beyond Zero Emissions and a commissioner on the Northern Territory Economic Reconstruction Commission that is advising the NT Chief Minister on the future pathway for the NT economy.

Eytan has a successful business and entrepreneurship background, he was a founder of Outware Mobile, one of Australia’s fastest growing tech companies which was acquired in 2017.

Eytan co-founded Infrastructure Access Managers, a fund manager that aims to decarbonise Australian unlisted infrastructure and is a director of the Australian Environmental Grantmakers Network.

Eytan is actively involved in the startup ecosystem both as an investor and a mentor. He is an advisor to the Impact Investment Group’s Giant Leap Fund.

Colin Irving, Treasurer

Colin Irving commenced volunteering with Beyond Zero Emissions in 2013, helping the Board of Directors with governance-related matters. He was elected to the Board in 2016 and became Treasurer in 2017. Colin is also contributing to the Zero Carbon Communities and Electrifying Industry initiatives.

Colin Irving is a highly capable manager and director with more than 20 years in the business leadership, consultancy, product development and solution delivery fields. He has led major programs for public, government and private organisations, both within Australia and internationally.

When not assisting BZE, Colin is the Pacific Zone Portfolio Manager for Schneider Electric – a global specialist in Energy Management solutions. Schneider is the leader in many energy technologies; including smart grid, electric vehicle charging, solar power and energy efficiency. Previous roles include Programme Manager for HP/EDS and Software Engineering Manager for Xtralis.

Colin holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree from the University of Western Australia and a Masters of Management degree from Monash University. He is also a certified Project Management Professional.

Colin is married with two children and lives in Melbourne, Victoria.

Dr Anne K Hellstedt

Anne is a leading expert in sustainability, specialising in the built environment. She is the Innovation Precinct Director at ANSTO, and prior to that, was the Project Director for the Melbourne School of Engineering where leading major infrastructure planning, development and implementation.

She has experience on professional industry boards and committees as a member, deputy chair and chair. She has been a recognised engineer and leader, as evidenced by being named Victorian Professional Engineer of the Year by Engineers Australia in 2012 and being invited to become a Fellow of Engineers Australia.

Prior to her current role Anne has been Australian and New Zealand Practice Leader for Applied Research and Sustainability in AECOM’s Building Engineering business line and with Lend Lease providing sustainability leadership to the Victoria/South Australia/Tasmania regional property business.

She completed her BE (Mech)(Hons) in 1992 and her PhD in 2003 at The Melbourne School of Engineering. Anne was Engineers Australia’s Victorian Professional Engineer of the Year for 2012.

Phil Vernon

Phil has over 30 years’ experience in financial services and he is passionate about transforming the corporate model and financial system to better serve society and the planet.  He was the Chair of the BZE Board from November 2016 to April 2019.

For nearly ten years, Phil was the Managing Director of Australian Ethical Investment, Australia’s leading ethical superannuation fund and investment manager with over $2.6 billion in funds under management, until August 2019.

Prior to Australian Ethical he was a senior Executive with Perpetual Limited.

He is currently a Participating Board consultant at ASG, a Director of the Environmental Defenders’ Office, Planet Ark Environmental Foundation and the Responsible Investment Association Australasia.   

Tom Quinn

Tom Quinn is Manager of Stakeholder Strategy and Coordination at Sustainability Victoria and has been a Director of BZE for three years. Tom was the founder and inaugural CEO of the Future Business Council, author of The Next Boom: A surprise new hope for Australia’s economy, and commissioned the Noel Hutley SC legal opinion on fiduciary duties and climate change.  

Tom grew up in rural Victoria and has a background in public policy, research and business innovation with particular focuses on climate change, technology and sustainability.

He regularly appears in the media to discuss the rapid transitions underway in our economy and how we can seize the opportunities the changes represent.

Elisa de Wit

Elisa de Wit is a partner in the Melbourne office of international legal practice Norton Rose Fulbright and heads the firm’s Climate Change and Sustainability practice.  

She has more than 27 years of legal experience and has practised in three Australian jurisdictions and the UK. Elisa is considered one of Australia’s preeminent climate change lawyers and advises clients on policy, regulation and compliance issues.

Elisa is a graduate of AICD and is a Director of the Carbon Market Institute, Australian Legal Sector Alliance and the Grampians Wimmera Mallee Water Corporation.

Cristina Talacko

Cristina Talacko was born in Brazil and migrated to Australia 22 years ago. She is an entrepreneur, owner and founder of SalDoce Fine Foods manufacturing, retailing and exporting allergen sensitive and vegan foods to more than 20 countries.

SalDoce is the proud winner of the 2016 and 2018 NSW Premier’s Export Awards, the 2017 National Ethnic Business and the NSW Business Chamber Award 2019. Most recently Cristina won the Highly Commended 2019 Premier’s Award for Women in International Business.

Cristina is also co-owner of retail organic bulk food stores Naked Foods Northbridge and Naked Foods Indooroopilly promoting zero waste lifestyle.

Cristina has been contributing for many years at Board level on various not for profits: she is a director on the Advisory Board of Multicultural NSW supporting the Minister for Multiculturalism in promoting cohesion amongst diverse communities.

She is the Vice-President of the Australia-Brazil Chamber of Commerce fostering business, trade and relations between Australia and Brazil.  Cristina is also the Chair of the environmental NFP Coalition for Conservation, a member of the Peak Consumer Consultative Council of Endeavour Energy which distributes electricity to Western Sydney, Secretary on the executive committee of the NSW Liberal Energy & Environment Policy Branch and is involved in generous community work as Secretary of One Meal – It Makes a Difference, a charity providing meals to the homeless.

She has a passion for the environment and for empowering women and has completed the Business Program “Women and Power” at Harvard Kennedy Business School in 2017. She graduated from the University of London with an LLB – Bachelor of Law, and a Diploma in Corporate Law at the University of Sydney.  Cristina has also studied Law in Sao Paulo Brazil at the Federal University USP.

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