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Top 100 : 2011
67 ENGINEERS AUSTRALIA | JUNE 2011 Greg Combet, 53 Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, Federal Government, Canberra Member for Charlton Mining engineer, University of NSW Former trade union leader Greg Combet entered federal Par- liament in 2007 and assisted across the Climate Change and Defence portfolios until after the 2010 federal election when he was appointed to the role of Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency. Since entering Cabinet he has devoted considerable effort towards implementing a carbon pricing mechanism -- considered by some to be the most important economic and environmental reform of this decade. "The risks of inaction on climate change to Australia -- to our economy, to our environment, and to our way of life -- are too big to ignore," he said during a recent address to the Hunter Business Chamber. "What is required is an economic transformation that decouples growth in pollution from growth in our economy." As the member for Charlton, based in the Hunter, Combet has demonstrated his ability to balance the electorate s interests in coal mining with the government s plan for a carbon price. At the last election he retained his seat with 53.2% of the primary vote and a 12.7% margin on a two-party preferred basis. He is a keen student of Australian labour history and in ad- dition to his mining engineering degree he has a Bachelor of Economics and a graduate diploma in Labour Relations and Law. Combet has three adult children and is a Member of the Order of Australia. Elizabeth Taylor, 56 Chair, Board of Professional Engineers of Queensland. She now lives in Sydney. Civil engineer, University of NSW Emeritus Professor Elizabeth Taylor is chair of the Board of Professional Engineers of Queensland, complementing her engagement with several engineer- ing communities. She is also the chair of the board of Engineers Media, the publisher of this magazine, and chair and international representative of RedR (Registered Engineers for Disaster Relief) Australia. She was formerly the Women In Engineering coordinator at the University of Technology, Sydney and pro vice-chancellor and executive dean of the Faculty of Sciences, Engineering and Health at Central Queensland University in Rockhampton. Taylor was recognised as an Officer of the Order of Australia for her contributions to the profession of engineering, including her services to engineering education, which saw her redevelop the engineering curriculum at UTS and promote women in engineering. She will be presenting at the International Confer- ence for Women Engineers and Scientists next month as one of its keynote speakers. TOP 100 COVER STORY