Inventor, Designer, Innovation Educator and Futurist
Sally’s experience is steeped in innovative practice and commentary. As an inventor, she has won seven international awards for her products Rainwater HOG and Nest highchair, including Rainwater HOG being named one of USA’s Top 10 Green Building Products in 2008.
The Nest highchair is held in the Powerhouse Museum’s Permanent Collection and the Victoria & Albert Museum in London in recognition of its adaptive concept and design. In 2012 she was named one of Advance Australia’s “50 for the Future” entrepreneurs in the USA.
Sally is also an activist for innovative thinking. She devised the ‘Adventurous Thinking’ strategy to provoke curiosity and multifarious thinking by combining multiple intelligences, design thinking and research. She has been sought after to teach her method at Stanford University, at NASA, and to a broader base of participants through workshops in Brazil, Australia and the USA. She also works with education leaders in Australia and Brazil creating Innovative learning environments. She devised an enhanced STEM learning strategy, named SYSTEMIC, now piloting in Australia and USA.
In Australia Sally is still most recognized for her regular role over six years as a panelist judge of inventions on ABC TV’s long running series, New Inventors. Her love of cars has led to her judging ‘Car of the Year’ for Wheels & Drive for over ten years, and since 2013 Sally has been an Ambassador for Engineers Without Borders Australia.
When asked why she was keen to delve into historical stories of invention, Sally says,
“There is so much to learn from looking at how innovators think up and realise their game-changing ideas. So much of Australia’s history is about making do with limited supplies, and so many of our great inventions came about through the ability of Australians to think laterally, and to repurpose things that we often take for granted. Now we call this frugal innovation, but back in the day it was the only way to get things done.”