Written by Geena Dunne

I joined Tattersalls Club earlier this year, and within one day, I received an email from Camille with the Events at Tattersalls pack. Never did I think that scanning over that document would lead to the first Women Who Innovate taking place within those walls.

We planned to put on an event for leading women in tech, sports, impact, fashion and business, during the week of SXSW Sydney (an iconic US tech and culture festival). We scoped venue after venue, looking for the right location, energy and partner to support a full day of festivities. It wasn’t until I sat down for dinner in the bar with my membership proposer, Linda Rudd, that I started thinking that an inner-city member’s club coming up on their 10th anniversary of welcoming women as members… this might be the place.

To say Des and the team were interested was an understatement. The enthusiasm and support for the event were enough to seal the deal that day. We wanted to work with people who understood the purpose and the vision of Women Who Innovate and the Tattersalls’ team were ready to jump on board.

My one request was simple: we temporarily cover the portraits of men and horses with iconic Australian women.

The day was jam-packed and energetic from the jump. We had speakers from Football Australia, Mecca, Cartier, VaynerMedia, SIR, Impact.com and Forbes. We had futurist Dr Catherine Ball and VOGUE’s innovator of the year, Grace Brown (who brought her companion robot, Abi). We had creatives like Rachel Burke, entrepreneurs like Essence Smith, Edwina Sharrock, Tara Croker, Gaby Rosenberg and Izzy Jensen, philanthropists and international development experts from The Aminata Maternal Foundation, The Hunger Project, UN Women, The Cova Project and the Judith Neilson Foundation.

We even had Chance The Rapper stop by to support his co-founder Essence Smith who was speaking on their foundation, Social Works, which supports the arts in schools across Chicago. I never thought I’d see Chance The Rapper in Tattersalls, but here we are…

The feedback has been spectacular with quotes like:

“I loved it and felt very uplifted and inspired. It was a room filled with like-minded and open women. I just loved it. Best ‘networking and speaking’ event I have been to for professional and creative women.”

As organisers, we are so grateful to Tattersalls for helping us host such a brilliant day. It was a proud moment showcasing the Club and the first-class hospitality of the team to over 150 powerhouse women. Many thanks to the club and members for supporting our temporary takeover and allowing us to showcase Tattersalls to an audience that was impressed and delighted.

We can’t wait for the next one!