Media Release, 06 October 2014

Julie Crisp, the Territory’s newly-appointed Auditor General and the first woman to hold the role, has been named as the 2014 Telstra Northern Territory Business Woman of the Year.

Until last month, Ms Crisp was a Partner at global professional services firm Deloitte and head of its Assurance and Advisory division in Darwin, specialising in business process improvement and other services for public sector, agricultural, aviation, education and not-for-profit clients.

Ms Crisp was also named Private and Corporate Sector Award winner at the 20th Telstra Northern Territory Business Women’s Awards which were attended by The Hon. Bess Price, MLA, Minister for Women’s Policy, at the Darwin Convention Centre tonight.

Other winners of the NT Awards include beauty therapist Debby Bell; former airline executive and current Executive Director for the YWCA of Darwin Jillian Ritherdon; and occupational therapist Shannon Hallatt, founder of OT for Kids NT.

A Deloitte Partner since 2008, Ms Crisp led an evolution of the business in the NT, from largely providing financial auditing to being a solution provider on business processes, risk management, forensic investigation and other services.

When NT Chief Minister Adam Giles announced Ms Crisp’s five-year appointment as Auditor General in August, he said she had a wealth of professional experience and academic qualifications for the role.

During her 16 years at Deloitte, she was recognised internally for her inspirational leadership, client service and staff development, never missing an annual revenue target and significantly growing service revenue.

Ms Crisp says: “It is an inspirational and energising work environment with an equal emphasis on our clients and our people. We have fun while solving the problems that keep our clients awake at night.

“I identified significant potential for growth in providing business process solutions to centres beyond Darwin – businesses everywhere are seeking to deliver the same outcomes more effectively.”

Ms Crisp has also chaired the Local Government Accounting Advisory Board, been deputy chair of the Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education and lectured in Accounting Theory at Charles Darwin University.

Kate McKenzie, Telstra Chief Operations Officer and Telstra Business Women’s Awards Ambassador said: “As I reflect on the achievements of the pioneering women that have won these Awards over the past 20 years, I am confident that the 2014 Northern Territory winners will continue the proud tradition of being an ambassador for women in business.

“They embody what it means to be a Telstra Business Women’s Award winner, courageous; confident; innovative: leaders we can all aspire to.”

Ms McKenzie said the Telstra Awards judges described Ms Crisp as a high-calibre role model, great communicator and an enthusiastic leader and problem-solver.

“She has a high level of integrity and client focus, has mentored women all over the world at Deloittes, and has a reputation for being collegiate, inclusive and a driver of change management strategies for clients.”

Previous winners of the Telstra NT Business Woman of the Year Award include Fannie Bay optometrist Helen Summers, Alice Springs airport manager Katie Cooper, Berrimah nursery owner Estelle Cornell and public servant Anne Bradford.

The NT winners proceed to the national finals in Melbourne on 26 November. For finalists and winners across Australia the awards offer a share in $650,000 in cash and prizes.

2014 Telstra Northern Territory Business Woman of the Year

Julie Crisp, Deloitte, Darwin

Business Owner Award
Debby Bell, Ella Baché Fannie Bay, Fannie Bay

Debby Bell turned her love for beauty therapy into more than just a business. While running her Ella Baché Fannie Bay business for more than 20 years, she has shared her enthusiasm and expertise with people aspiring to join the industry. A former TAFE lecturer in beauty therapy, she has been active in organising and judging the Australian beauty therapists section of the World Skills event. Now managing a team of nine beauty therapists, Ms Bell takes great pride in mentoring her employees. The Telstra Awards judges said she demonstrated outstanding interpersonal communication skills, connecting on a personal level with her clients and staff. They also noted that her compelling vision and savvy sales management disciplines has led to successful business growth.

Private and Corporate Sector Award
Julie Crisp, Deloitte, Darwin

Community and Government Award
Jillian Ritherdon YWCA of Darwin Inc. Darwin

A former HR Manager with Air France, Jillian Ritherdon has led a wide range of service programs since 2011 as Executive Director and Public Officer for the YWCA of Darwin. She has used her corporate experience to oversee the delivery of safe and sustainable services for disadvantaged youth and families, as well as accommodation services and a breast cancer recovery program. Telstra Awards judges said her personal mantra of kindness and an empathy for people of all backgrounds makes good business sense. They also said that Ms Ritherdon leads by example and was committed to improving lives, impressed by her strong desire to merge business principles with organisational values.

Business Innovation Award
Jillian Ritherdon, YWCA of Darwin Inc., Darwin

Through her vision to empower children, women and families, Executive Director at the YWCA of Darwin, Jillian Ritherdon launched a suite of social enterprises called “For Futures”. Food for Futures is a self-sustaining service targeting corporates and individuals who wish to see the cost of hiring a meeting room returned to the community. Shine for Futures provides clients with training in the cleaning and property maintenance sector and Hands on for Futures – an Indigenous youth employment program – is in development. The Telstra Awards judges praised her strength of character, commercial and social savviness, humility and commitment to community. Judges said she was strategic, visionary and believed in the enormous possibility of individuals and business.

Young Business Women’s Award

Shannon Hallatt, OT for Kids NT, Darwin

Shannon Hallatt began her occupational therapy career in government agencies before creating OT for Kids NT in 2010 to help children and families connect, understand their unique self and grow their potential. Her business provides occupational therapy services to children with learning disorders, including diagnosis and therapy for kids with Autism and a range of other challenges. OT for Kids NT provides outreach services with regular visits to centres outside Darwin as well as running training programs with schools and organisations like the Department of Education. Telstra Awards judges said Ms Hallatt had true entrepreneurial spirit, backing herself by moving from government to private enterprise. She was focused, visionary, and employed a planned approach to business growth and a partnership approach towards clients, suppliers and competitors.

More information on the Telstra Business Women’s Awards can be found at