Newcastle-based Ampcontrol is a privately owned major supplier of electrical equipment. Peter Cockbain the company’s co-founder is the new National president of Engineers Australia while CEO Dr Alan Broadfoot has been named National Professional Engineer of the Year for 2005.
As president of the society, Cockbain’s key focus will be to further develop collaboration between industry and research organisations to exploit Australia’s intellectual property.
“We need to develop the strategies and implement the incremental changes to transform our intellectual property from a potential resource into a substantial part of our nation’s wealth,” he said.
Dr Broadfoot’s accolade recognises his commitment to the profession, the industry and his community work in the Newcastle and Hunter Region.
He is involved in the issues of the ongoing skills shortage and as chair of the Australian Industry Group Hunter Skills Development Program and is actively involved in the promotion of apprenticeships and traineeships. He has initiated a pilot education training program which provides work experience and forums for industry, business, schools and training providers.
“It is vital that the younger generation is exposed to engineering, particularly during high school to encourage participation at tertiary level. I am committed to providing resources and guidance with the ambition to see graduates complete their studies, enter the workforce and retain their skill base in the local community,” Broadfoot said.
The two men also established ResTech, a research and development company at the University of Newcastle, providing a benchmark for other industry and educational facilities.
Dr Broadfoot has also been instrumental in creating a technical society within Engineers Australia for electrical and mechanical engineers working in the mining industry. Known as the Mining Electrical and Mining Mechanical Engineering Society (MEMMES), it now boasts over 150 members.