Advance Appoints New CEO to Drive Expat Connections with Australia

The Board of Advance is delighted to announce the appointment of Maria MacNamara as Chief Executive Officer, effective today. Maria takes up the role vacated by former CEO, Serafina Maiorano who resigned earlier this year after 10 years of dedicated service.

Advance Chairman, Yasmin Allen said: “We are delighted Maria is joining Advance. Her experience in digital transformation, innovation and entrepreneurship – along with her deep understanding of domestic and international policy will help drive Advance’s mission.

“Under Maria’s leadership, Advance will continue to identify Australian ingenuity across the diaspora and more actively link it to our public and private sector organisations, innovation ecosystem, research institutions and universities. We look forward to working with Maria to build on Advance’s success.”

Maria MacNamara said: “Advance is an organisation with a compelling mission. It’s an honour to work with more than one million talented expats, excelling in their chosen fields , who embody the curiosity, tenacity and grit needed to compete on the world stage. I am very much looking forward to seeing what we can achieve together for the benefit of all Australians. Our most immediate challenge is to connect the diaspora with opportunities to showcase their work and where possible, inspire and encourage others to emulate their success.”

MacNamara has been an advisor to Senator the Hon. Arthur Sinodinos AO, Australia’s incoming Ambassador to the US. She worked in the Turnbull Government’s Digital Transformation Agency within the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and the Workers Compensation Independent Review Office (WIRO), in the NSW Government’s Department of Customer Service. MacNamara has over 25 years leading the marketing and business development programs of legal and accounting firms, has launched three startups and exited two. She has also advised a number of founders of high growth companies as they have scaled into global markets and currently sits on the boards of the Australia-Israel Chamber of Commerce, Spark Festival and the International Women’s Forum in Australia.

Last year she was recognised by her peers and awarded the Community Most Valuable Person Award at the 3rd Annual Australasian Startup Awards at Startcon.