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Speakers list for PacINET 2014, Rarotonga

PACINET, Rarotonga Cook Islands, 22 – 26 September, 2014


AliAli AlMeshal, ISOC Bahrain

Mr. Ali AlMeshal is currently the Business Relationship Manager at CrediMax. In this role, he is responsible for managing, directing and participating in growing the merchant base through different channels (E-com & Others) and business volume, continuing to coach and develop staff to ensure quality of output in all sales and operations efforts, tracking market performance to ensure meeting the assigned targets in increased business turnover. He is also responsible for establishing and maintaining current top tier client accounts and acquiring new major potential client relationships.  Prior to this, Mr. Ali AlMeshal was Head of IT and Project Manager at CrediMax – Bahrain, responsible for the IT infrastructure and all other business IT related projects. Mr. AlMeshal obtained his B.S. degree from Bahrain University in Business information systems and his MBA from New York Institute of Technology. He has 20 years of experience in the Credit Card Business in general by working in Bank of Bahrain and Kuwait as well as the current job in CrediMax.  As a special assignment, he managed the setting up of a new joint venture company in Bahrain called Global Payment Services (GPS) which was a third party processor for card business”. Mr. AlMeshal is a Board member of the Bahrain Internet Society (BIS) & Director of Strategic alliance, recently appointed as Vice Chair of APRALO and also elected as a board Member for AMAG. Mr. Ali is also Certified Bullet Proof Manager. He participated in many conferences and forums around the world as a speaker. Also he was part of the jury of the Bahrain eContent award and eGov Excellence award. Moreover Ali has done some lecturing on MIS with Ernst and Young on free-lance basis.


Anonga TisamAnonga Tisam, ICT Consultant

Anonga is a Masters student who has worked for Education and the Office of the Prime Minister in the area of Information Systems. He is currently working independently on a Cook Islands Maori Language database with the assistance of a grant from the ISIF Asia Award through APNIC.  Awardees recently attended a meeting at the APNIC conference in Brisbane just before this PacINET.

The Cook Islands Maori language has been identified as one of the languages at risk of extinction if there is not a more concerted effort to ensure that the language is encouraged, especially among the young. It is with this focus that Ano has developed an application, and is promoting it using social media, to address the issue among those who most use the technology – our young people of the Cook Islands.

During his presentation, Ano will also introduce a database programme that he designed that has a range of uses in all types of applications. This database is called Viviki.


Don HollanderDon Hollander, General Manager, APTLD

Don Hollander has been the Chair of 2020 Communications Trust, the General Manager for the Asia Pacific Top Level Domain Association, the Global Coordinator for the Pacific Internet Partnership and is a member of the New Zealand Digital Development Council. He has also been the Regional Coordinator of the Global Knowledge Partnership.

He has also worked in the following postions: Regional Coordinator for Oceania at Global Knowledge Partnership (GKP); Global Coordinator at PIP – Pacific Internet Partners; Member, Communications Sub-Commission at UNESCO (NZ); CEO at Computer Services Ltd – Samoa; CIO at Computerland New Zealand; CIO at ComputerLand (Ceritas) New Zealand Ltd; GM IT&T at Transpower; Councillor at InternetNZ; Chair at TUANZ; General Manager – New Media at INL

He lives in Wellington, NZ, and is the Owner of Book Haven, an online second-hand bookstore. Don studied at the Georgia Institute of Technology and University of California, Los Angeles.

(from icannwiki.com)


Ellen Strickland - InternetNZ
Ellen Strickland – InternetNZ

Ellen Strickland, Vice Chair Policy – PICISOC Board, InternetNZ

Ellen has recently been reelected to the Board of the Pacific Islands Chapter of the Internet Society. This will be her third term of elected office where she has held the position of Secretary to the Board and is currently Vice Chair Policy. She stood for the Board again because she believes that PICISOC is an important regional organisation, with a wide range of members who support the development of the Internet for the Pacific Island region.

Ellen is currently Collaboration and Community Lead at InternetNZ, which manages the New Zealand ccTLD and is a charity which works with and for the Internet Community to promote the Internet and its benefits and protect its potential, including through hosting the NZ Internet Governance Forum initiative called NetHui.

Ellen is a Founder of Oceania Women’s Network Satellite, a company recently set up to support the development of the Internet in Oceania, which is focused on investing in new technologies, research and development and supporting innovation to enable all communities in our region to benefit from the Internet.

She has recently submitted her PhD thesis on Pacific Island regional ICT policy which was completed through the Centre for Communication and Social Change at the University of Queensland and will be presenting a report on her work at PacINET Rarotonga. Ellen has been involved in Pacific Island internet research, training and community projects since 2003, when she was working for the NZ UNESCO National Commission and completed a Masters in Communications at Victoria University on Pacific Island Telecentres.

(from picisoc.org)


Elly Tawhai, Senior Internet Resource Analyst, Oceania & Pacific, APNIC

For the past eight years Elly has been working at APNIC as an Internet Resource Analyst. She also co-ordinates APNIC’s liaison activities within the Pacific, New Zealand and Australia. Elly is one of the longest serving employees of APNIC having started in September 2000.

She is responsible for working with resource holders to process resource allocation requests, which is the core operation of APNIC. As a senior internet resource analyst her role extends to evaluating and analysing network plans from members and the community and making appropriate decisions for the distribution of the Internet resources throughout the region.

In her liaison role, Elly uses knowledge of the Pacific region, networking with existing members, seeking liaison opportunities with potential members and actively participating in Liaison events. She is also occasionally required to work closely with the training team to conduct training within the region.

Prior to joining APNIC, Elly worked in a range of roles in Systems Administration. Her previous role included working with the University of Queensland, Australia and Queensland Parliament House, Australia.

(from apnic.org)  


Graham Hassall, Victoria University, Wellington, NZ

Graham Hassall isan Associate Professor in Public Policy and Public Management in the School of Government at the Victoria University of Wellington.    After completing a PhD in Pacific Islands’ history at the Australian National University in 1990, he has taught in Australia, Papua New Guinea, Switzerland, Fiji, and now New Zealand.  Graham’s interests focus on government systems, public administration and public policy in the Pacific Islands (in addition to global governance and global public policy). He is currently researching eGovernment in the Pacific Islands in collaboration with Rowena Cullen.

Presentation topic: “Researching eGovernment in the Pacific Islands: preliminary findings”

(from www.victoria.ac.nz)


Gunela  AstbrinkGunela Astbrink, GSA InfoComm, Australia

Gunela Astbrink has worked in disability and technology policy and research for 25 years both in Australia and internationally.

She led projects at the Telematics and Disability Centre of Telia (Swedish Telecom) and the European Union-funded project, COST 219 (Telecommunications: Access for Disabled and Elderly People) in the 1990’s. Gunela was part of the Smart Internet Technology Cooperative Research Centre’s user-centred design group and led a project on multi-modal mobile devices.

For over 10 years, Gunela was National Coordinator of TEDICORE (Telecommunications and Disability Consumer Representation) ensuring that people with disability participated in policy and standards development to improve telecommunications accessibility.

Gunela is participating in the EU-funded project CARDIAC to develop a research roadmap for future funding of accessible ICT and assistive technology.

Gunela Astbrink is Director on the Board of the Internet Society of Australia and a member of the Advisory Board of the International Center for Disability Resources on the Internet as well as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. She holds an adjunct senior research position in the Institute for Integrated and Intelligent Systems at Griffith University.

(GSA InfoComm from Telsoc.org)


Holly RaicheHolly Raiche, ISOC-Au, Australia

Holly is a member of the Executive team of the At-Large Advisory Committee of ICANN, a non-Executive Director of the Internet Society of Australia and the Deputy Chair of the Australian Communications Consumer Action Network (ACCAN), Australia’s peak body for consumer advocacy in communications. Previously, she was the Chair of the ICANN’s regional advisory committee for the Asia-Pacific region, APRALO, and the Executive Director of the Internet Society of Australia.  She has also been and Policy Advisor at the Communications Law Centre and Policy Advisor with the Communications Law Centre, a public interest advocacy centre specialising in communications law.

Holly has a BA, an MA and an LLB, and teaches Communications Law at both an undergraduate and graduate level at UNSW and at UTS.  Holly has written widely on telecommunications issues, and most relevantly, is the author of the chapters on the policy background and consumer protections in the only text on telecommunications, the Australian Telecommunications Regulation.  Holly is a Visiting Fellow at the Cyberspace Law and Policy Centre and Research Associate at the Communications law Centre.


john turnbullJohn Turnbull, Sales Director, O3B Networks

John is a Telecommunications professional with 20 years national and international sales management and commercial contract negotiation expertise within wholesale, retail, ISP, corporate and government sectors. His expertise is in fibre networks across entire sales and stakeholder negotiation, commercial assessment and construction cycle.

His specialties include: Sales strategy development, key account management, leadership of high performing sales teams, delivery of tailored customer solutions for voice, data and mobile technology, national/international contract negotiation, stakeholder management.

(from au.linkedin.com)


Mana Etches, Emergency Management Cook Islands

Mana has worked in a variety of ICT roles within government and brings a wealth of skills in the area of database development to his new role in Emergency Management. He has created a Geo-Portal which can identify significant data patterns layered on top of  geographic maps. He will be demonstrating this during his presentation.


Maureen HilyardMaureen Hilyard, Chair of the PICISOC Board

Maureen Hilyard is currently the Board Chair of PICISOC (2012-2014) and was Vice Chair (2010-2011). She is an elected member of the ICANN At Large Advisory Committee (ALAC) and also of the ALAC Leadership Team and APRALO Executive. She is the ALAC Liaison to the ccNSO and is currently on several working groups associated with the interests of the At Large Community. In the Cook Islands, she founded the Cook Islands Internet Action Group which advocates for internet policies and infrastructure development and is the Cook Islands UNESCO Commissioner for Information and Communication.  In June, 2014, she was selected as one of ten Pacific participants to attend a Geneva Diplomacy Programme organised by the Diplo Foundation. She has participated in several regional and global IGFs.

She is an ex-teacher and also holds a Master of Management degree from Massey University, NZ. As a day job she has recently been appointed as the Australian Aid-funded Project Manager for the Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment Project with the Ministry of Internal Affairs.  She formerly project managed two UNDP projects – eGovernment in the Office of the Prime Minister and Persistent Organic Pollutants with the National Environment Service. Was a Development Programme Coordinator with the NZ High Commission on Rarotonga before becoming an independent consultant. Was an eLearning Coordinator for USP; a project manager for a social services website and associated social media activities and training; coordinator for an outer island telecentre project;  and… co-project managed a canoe building project on behalf of the Cook Islands Canoeing Association. Other community activities include being Past-President of the Rotary Club of Rarotonga and  past VP of the Pan Pacific South East Asia Women’s Association.


michaelalexMichael Alex, Kacific

Michael Alex is the director of customer and sales engineering at Kacific and an experienced satellite industry professional. For Kacific, Michael is responsible for the technical aspect of sales and is acting as the primary liaison officer for all customers in the Pacific Islands and New Zealand. Prior to Kacific, Michael was a business development manager at Supremesat, the Sri Lankan satellite operator, where he notably brokered a large satellite bandwidth deal in South Asia. Before Supremesat, Michael was a business consultant in the telecommunication and satellite industry, where he contributed to market research for customers including O3b Networks. Michael holds a Bachelor of Computer and Telecommunications Engineering from the Mendeleev University in Moscow and is fluent in English, Tamil and Russian.


nurul islam romanNurul Islam Roman, APNIC

Nurul Islam Roman is currently the Senior Training Specialist at APNIC.  Nurul maintains the APNIC training lab network and is involved in delivering  technical training for the APNIC community. He possesses specialized skills in designing and running IPv4/IPv6 routing and switching infrastructure for service provider and enterprise networks. Prior to his current role he looked after the IP and AS number allocations for the APNIC members. Following graduation from the UK in computer science technologies, Nurul gained lots of experience working in the ISP industry in the UK and in Bangladesh.

Areas of Interest:
Internet Resource Management, IPv6, Routing and Switching, MPLS, BGP, Security, Internet Routing Registry and RPKI, ISP Services and Internetworking.

Nurul will be accompanying Elly Tawhai to take the technical training programme for engineers. Nurul was a member of the training team that attended our PacINET in Tonga last year.


 Peter Dengate-ThrushPeter Dengate-Thrush

Peter Dengate Thrush is globally recognized as a leader of Internet infrastructure and governance organisations.  He has ardently defended the Internet from singular points of control and capture. A free Internet, he believes, is instrumental for encouraging self-expression, innovation and fundamental economic growth.

This passion has defined his career since 1995 when he agreed to help a fledgling Internet association, InternetNZ, then recently formed, to assume responsibility for the .nz Top Level Domain as President of InternetNZ, and Chair of its International Affairs Committee. As a respected intellectual property barrister he made substantial contributions to the WIPO work done in 1999-2000 on domain names, and was instrumental in developing the UDRP – a global, compulsory arbitration process applying to generic domain names.

He served as Chairman of ICANN, the Los Angeles-based global governance authority of the Internet, between 2007 and 2011. At ICANN, he led the process to replace the direct US Government oversight of ICANN with accountability to the global Internet community.  He also led the introduction of internationalised (non-english) domain names, the de-regulation of the registry/registrar market, increased security for internet users via the addition of DNSSEC (cryptographic security) to the root of the Internet, and the introduction of a market-driven process for adding new generic Top Level Domains (gTLDs). These innovations are cumulatively the biggest changes to the Internet since its inception.

Until January 31, 2013 Peter was the Executive Chaiman of Top Domain Holdings Limited. TLDH is registered on the London Stock Exchange, (AIM:TLDH.L), and is the only publicly traded company focused exclusively on acquiring and operating new generic top-level domains.  He is also the founder and chairman of the charitable trust that awards the New Zealand Internet Industry Awards.

He has also been invited to the boards of several technology based startups. Currently, he serves on two – dealing with patented facial recognition software, and a new Top Level Domain for New Zealanders.

He is prized for his singular-minded focus and stamina in setting and achieving strategic goals, building, energizing, and guiding management, and balancing diverse and sometimes conflicting stakeholders, to transform small but ambitious organizations into key commercial or non-commercial players on the public stage.

He is familiar with recruiting, counselling and evaluating performance of CEOs, and provides strategic advice to boards on issues facing start-ups. He is accustomed to reaching out to, and working with Heads of State, Ministerial-level elected and Governmental officials around the world, and is a diplomatic and skillful negotiator.


Pua Hunter, Director ICT, Office of the Prime Minister 

Pua has been the Director of ICT for several years and during this time has seen many changes in the Office of the Prime Minister due  to changes in government and leadership roles. The role of the ICT division is diverse in that it requires the division to collaborate with the other sections within the environs of the Office of the Prime Minister.  This currently involves the Office of the Minister of Telecommunications, the National Policy unit, Renewable Energy Project, and the Climate Change Project.  Pua has been integral to an ICT training programme that has been introduced to communities in the outer islands to support communication in the event of a natural disaster, especially in relation to climate change.


Rajnesh Singh, Regional Director, ISOC Bureau, Singapore

Rajnesh Singh is Regional Director of the Asia-Pacific Regional Bureau at the Internet Society where he oversees projects, initiatives and activities across the Internet Society’s functional and programmatic areas in the Asia and Pacific region, including Public Policy, Capacity Building and Internet Standards and Technology.

Prior to joining the Internet Society, Rajnesh played founding and leading roles in several technology and private equity investment firms, and still maintains varied business interests. In his professional capacity, Rajnesh has consulted on communications & power infrastructure, project management and business strategy for medium to large companies and organisations in the Asia-Pacific region. He has also held advisory roles across multiple sectors ranging from governmental organisations to sporting organisations and the private sector.

Rajnesh has worked extensively with the Asia-Pacific Internet community, and has held several leadership roles, including Founding Chair of ICANN’s Asia Pacific Regional At-Large Organisation (APRALO) and Chair of the Pacific Islands Chapter of the Internet Society. He has worked extensively on ICT policy, training and capacity building in the region, including delivering programmes for UN agencies.

Rajnesh speaks multiple languages and is based in Singapore. (from www.internetsociety.org)


Dr Rowena Cullen, Professor, Victoria University, Wellington, NZ

Dr Rowena Cullen is an Emeritus Professor in the School of Government at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, and a former Associate Dean for Research in the Victoria Business School. Her research in the field of e-government is currently focused on effective use of e-government in small island developing states (SIDS) with an emphasis on the Pacific. Past research focused on effective use of government web sites for communication with citizens,s e-participation, privacy and trust. She has collaborated with the New Zealand State Services Commission on several e-government projects and has published over 100 articles and book chapters, many of which are on e-government. She was co-editor and author of several chapters in Comparative Perspectives on E-Government (2006), and has contributed chapters to several other books on e-government. She is on the editorial board of Government Information Quarterly, and the Journal of IT and Politics, and regularly reviews for other e-government journals. Her other research interests are in health informatics and the evaluation of information services.

Save VoceaSave Vocea, Vice President Stakeholder Engagement, ICANN

Savenaca Vocea (Save) is the Regional Vice President for Stakeholder Engagement in ICANN serving the Australia/ Pacific Islands region. He is responsible for outreach, support and engagement with all stakeholders including governments, civil society and private sector in Oceania. Prior to joining ICANN, he was Policy Development Manager at APNIC and was also Manager at the Pacific Islands Telecommunications Association.



William Tuivaga, SRIC Project, Office of the Prime Minister

William is the National Programme Manager for the SRIC programme in the Cook Islands, the goal of which is the enhance sustainability and resilience in our Cook Islands communities in the face of impending changes to our environment due to Climate Change. He previously worked with the Emergency Management Cook Islands (EMCI) so that his experience lies in coping with the risks related to natural disasters. ICT is being employed in both of these organisations in the Cook Islands to mitigate the risks associated with Climate Change and living in an isolated tropical island environment. William is also the Chairman of the PTA of the local Arorangi School which is organising a major centennial celebration in February 2015.

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