For over 20 years Christina Ryan has been an active leader in the Australian disability community. She has worked at an international, national and local level to change the diversity agenda, while mentoring and supporting numerous people with disabilities to their own leadership success. Christina established the Disability Leadership Institute in 2016 as a professional hub for leaders with disabilities to build & support our disability leaders. She aims to grow the presence and recognition of disability leaders across all sections of our community. Christina is also a regular keynote speaker and commentator.
An executive and management coach (organisational development specialist) who embeds inclusion and ethical frameworks across organisational structures & culture, Christina has held CEO, senior management & team leading positions across both government & non-government sectors for 20 years, is a high level strategic thinker & noted innovator, using design thinking & collaboration to build new approaches.
Christina has sat on government advisory bodies for women, disability and the community sector. She has sat on non-profit boards including as chair and deputy-chair and is regularly consulted for advice on change management, human rights, human resources, good practice governance and management, and employing people with disabilities. Christina builds strong teams and culture.
She has been a member of Women with Disabilities Australia (WWDA) for 20 years and pioneered the use of mainstream forums by women with disabilities at the United Nations. She now mentors and teaches effective use of the UN for rights activists globally and acts as a leadership coach for both people with disabilities and those working with them.
Christina represented WWDA on the Australian NGO delegation to the UN CEDAW Committee and was a member of the official Australian Delegation to UN Commission on the Status of Women 55 where she succeeded in having language about multiple disadvantage and intersectionality included in CSW outcomes for the first time. At the International Conference on Women with Disability in Madrid in 2012 Christina delivered the keynote address on WWDA’s campaign to end forced sterilisation.
In 2013 Christina was acknowledged as one of 100 women of the Canberra Centenary. She was a finalist in the 2014 ACT Telstra Businesswomen’s Awards, and was awarded the Lifetime Achievement in Inclusion at the 2015 ACT Chief Minister’s Inclusion Awards. Christina was a 2017 Westpac Social Change Fellow.