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The Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) is the world's largest organization serving the professional and business interests of attorneys who practice in the legal departments of corporations, associations, nonprofits and other private-sector organizations around the globe.

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Diana Ryall

We (virtually) sat down with Diana Ryall to learn about her and her session at the upcoming In-House Legal Virtual Conference. Diana is a keynote speaker, author, diversity advisor, innovation leader and entrepreneur who has been disrupting workplaces, and advocating for diversity for more than 30 years. This November, we are excited to welcome Diana to our computer screens where she will challenge our views on diversity in the workplace and asks the tough questions about whether it is possible to “have it all” and how you can achieve it.

Diana began her career as a high school maths teacher and a computer programmer after studying Mathematics and Science at the University of Sydney. Today, Diana is one of Australia’s leading voices and gender equality advocates. She was the first woman in Australia to lead an IT company when she was Managing Director of Apple Australia from 1997 to 2001. The following year, she founded Xplore for Success, a consultancy dedicated to equality, inclusion and diversity. 

“During my career at Apple I became more aware of how few women held senior positions although they often seemed to be an invaluable second-in-charge. After I left Apple and spent more time speaking with other women of all ages, I realised that many women thought if they quietly did an outstanding job, then promotion and remuneration would follow. Unfortunately, many of our workplaces today do not operate that way. It was from these conversations that I was motivated to start Xplore.”

After 18 years, Xplore has provided a range of programs, coaching and inspiration to women and men to develop confidence and take ownership of their careers. More than 16,000 people have benefited from Xplore’s career development programs, including participants from organisations like American Express, CBA, Deloitte, Department of Commerce, GHD, KPMG, NAB and QBE. 

Diana is a passionate advocate and one area she is incredibly passionate about is supporting women in achieving their personal and professional goals. 

“I want to challenge all Australians to embrace equality, better understand personal bias, think differently about diversity and support all people to achieve their goals.”

Despite the progress of gender equality in the western world, there is still a strong argument to be made that parenthood is far more detrimental for a female professional’s career than their male counterparts. Diana’s session, ‘Is motherhood the kryptonite of superwoman lawyers?’, will bring together a panel of fascinating women and ACC President, Justin Coss, to discuss whether it is possible to have a career and family and how it can be achieved. 

“At every stage of your life it is important to stop and reflect.  Having children is a significant commitment and will affect your career progression.  However, many women will work for over 40 years as I did and if your career flat lines for a while and you reach your career goals a little later, does it really matter?”

Diana’s session will enlighten and inspire as she shares important three lessons she’s learnt over the years:

  • Perfection is not the answer to a perfect life
  • Life is not a sprint it is a marathon and as you approach the end of your life you want to be sure that your legacy has given you joy
  • Every day is a gift and if you get up each morning and are not happy with your life then it is time for change.

Register today and be a part of this important discussion


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