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Top 100 : 2012
Peter Brecht, 56 President, Australian Constructors Association (ACA), Sydney Civil engineer, University of Newcastle PETER BRECHT is president of the organisation that represents Australia s biggest construction contractors. Col- lectively ACA member companies have combined annual revenue in excess of $50 billion and employ over 100,000 people in Australia and overseas. Brecht is also managing director of Lend Lease s Australian construction busi- ness. He also recently became a member of NSW Council for Women s Economic Opportunity. "Good communication skills are important in order to be an influential engineer. You need to be able to effectively communicate with a range of internal and external stakeholders including your own team, clients, suppliers and the general public," he said. "I entered the construction industry through my engineering degree. As I progressed into more general manage- ment roles, the discipline I developed as an engineer has helped me to identify and work through a range of business issues." Stephen Durkin, 46 Chief Executive, Engineers Australia, Melbourne Civil engineer, Monash University STEPHEN DURKIN commenced his role as chief executive of Engineers Australia in January. The organisation numbers 100,000 members from many engineering disciplines. "As engineers, we are trained to analyse data, make fact-based decisions and deliver outcomes in complex situations," he said. "I believe that successful engineers in the modern world demonstrate a broad range of attributes such as innovation, creativity, teamwork and leadership. Effective com- munication is another critical skill for engineers. The most influential engineers in my mind are those who are providing leadership not only in the organisations where they work, but across the profession as a whole. These influential leaders are often helping us to connect the role of the engineer through to the communities that we are a part of. "The international recognition of the Australian engineering teams and the global expansion of many Australian engineering companies is something that all Australian engineers should be very proud of." David Hood, 68 National President, Engineers Australia, Brisbane Civil engineer, University of Queensland DAVID HOOD was officially installed as national president of Engineers Australia in November 2011. He has identified sustainability as a priority for the engi- neering profession and believes that "we may at last be realising the importance of doing something substantial about implementing sustainability and taking action to both mitigate the causes of, and adapt to, climate change." "I have been blessed with a remark- able career, transitioning from large infrastructure projects in my early career, through facility management, into driving the uptake of sustainability in the built environment. My engineering studies and experience have enabled me to see sustainability holistically from a systems point of view, and to apply logic and an outcomes perspective to its implementa- tion," he said. "To be influential you must have pas- sion, and a very clear vision of where you see the future. Of course, good communi- cation skills, enthusiasm, energy, and the ability to instil hope and excitement for a changed future are also crucial." TOP 100 COVER STORY 35 ENGINEERS AUSTRALIA | JUNE 2012 Associations (L-r) David Hood, Peter Brecht and Stephen Durkin.