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Top 100 : 2010
COVER STORY -- TOP 100 AUSTRALIA S MOST INFLUENTIAL ENGINEERS Collin Elliott, 52 Global President, Infrastructure and Minerals, KBR, Brisbane Electronics engineer, Bendigo Institute of Technology As head of KBR s global Infrastructure and Minerals (I&M) business unit, Colin Elliott is responsible f the performance of more than 2000 employees worldwide. e business unit s activities span Austral the Middle East, Europe including Britain, and the Americas. In the role since late 2009 when the I&M business unit was established, Elliott is in charge of the compan activities in the four areas of facilities (including buildings, event management and industrial), miner transport (aviation, roads, rail and maritime) and water. Elliott believes the two most signi cant leadership challenges ahead are the fast-tracking of the I&M ness s growth and the transfer of the company s systems and processes already in use in its industrial pro its infrastructure projects. One of the largest Australian projects KBR is involved in at present is the $4 Regional Rail Link program in Victoria. On the international stage, the Qatar Bahrain Causeway is its largest infrastructure project. Elliott believes that one of his biggest achievements as a leader was to have steered the Australian infrastructure business through the global nancial crisis, with relatively minimal impact on both the business and sta . Ross Hitt, 57 Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of SMEC Holdings, Melbourne Civil engineer, Gordon Institute of Technology/Deakin University Ross Hitt has been the man- aging director and CEO of SMEC Holdings since last year. With 3800 employees the com- pany -- originally the Snowy Mountains Engineering Corpora- tion -- is now a major Australian and international engineering and development consultancy. It has more than 20 subsidiary and associated companies and 41 permanent o ces in 26 countries across Australia, Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Asia Paci c. An unlisted public company, SMEC is principally sta -owned following privatisation in 1993. A signi cant portion of its international work is for public infrastructure projects funded through international finance institutions such as the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank. e remainder of the public infrastructure work is funded by governments and through various other private and public funding mechanisms. Two of the company s largest projects at present are Bakun Dam in Malaysia and Ipswich Motorway in Queensland. A main challenge ahead for Hitt is "to continue to grow the busi- ness in a tough post GFC market". He sees as a major achievement taking on his new role in the middle of the crisis and steering the company through it. He said the skills shortage has been with the business for a num- ber of years and "we continue to work within these constraints". Hitt has worked and lived in a number of countries throughout Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia and the Middle East. In his leisure he likes walking, shing and watching football. Roger Olds, 54 Managing Director of Coffey International Limited, Melbourne Civil engineer, Monash University Co ey International came out of the global nancial crisis strongly but has seen a slow-down in 2010 as global nancial uncertainty returns and impacts the con - dence of decision makers for new projects, according to the com- pany s managing director Roger Olds. He expects the Middle East to be a region of growth in the short to medium term and also expects the resources sector to continue to improve. Two key leadership challenges for him are the continuing ex- pansion of the business globally as well as managing it through these periods of global economic uncertainty. For the 2009/10 nancial year the company expects revenue to come in at around $800 million. Its sta number stands at 4000. One of the company s most interesting projects at present is the Tatweer Project in Iraq. Supported by USAID, Tatweer is a agship e ort to rebuild and redirect the government of Iraq s administrative capacity to deliver core services to the Iraqi people, Olds said. MSI, a Co ey subsidiary, is the prime contractor for this project and has been working in Iraq since 2006. Tatweer has been extended to run through to January 2011. One of his activities outside work is fund raising for the Monash University Engineering Foundation and a motor neuron disease charity. for ia, ny s rals, busi- ojects to 4.3 billion 52 ENGINEERS AUSTRALIA | JUNE 2010