The recipient of the second 2016 UN Women National Committee Australia MBA Scholarship is a former ministerial advisor, who has devoted her career to improving the lives of women faced with adversity.

The Scholarship, worth over $60,000, was established with the aim of increasing the number of women in leadership roles and furthering gender equality in business.

Adele Langton was awarded the scholarship because she “demonstrated a solid commitment to women’s advocacy work in private volunteering, board representation, public policy and advisory services in the United States”.

“I have always been interested in the issues affecting women including women’s safety, equality, advocacy and empowerment,” said Ms Langton. “With the support of UN Women National Committee Australia and the MBA Scholarship I want to become a better advocate, mentor and voice on these issues.”

A past advisor to Labor Attorneys General Jason Clare and Robert McClelland, Ms Langton has shaped policy for women facing violence and discrimination through amendments to the Family Law Act and the Sex Discrimination Act in 2010 and 2011.

Ms Langton also acts as a workplace mentor for women, and has spent almost a decade volunteering to assist victims of domestic violence in Australia and the United States.

“I was attracted to the Sydney University MBA program in large part because of its commitment to gender equity,” said Ms Langton.

“Through the program I am expecting to gain insights into leadership and a new way of looking at the issues facing women in Australia, as well as allowing me to take a range of business skills to the next level,” said Ms Langton.

Congratulating Ms Langton, Dean of the Business School, Professor Greg Whitwell, said the partnership with the National Committee for UN Women Australia reflected the School’s “strong commitment to diversity and inclusion”.

“Diversity in leadership is morally desirable and can improve organisational performance,” said Professor Whitwell. “It does so because it leads to the surfacing of assumptions. It helps to detect biases. It helps you to be more creative. It helps you look at things differently and therefore leads to better decision making.”

Executive Director of the National Committee for UN Women Australia, Janelle Weissman, commented that the high calibre of applicants for the scholarship demonstrated the growing awareness of the need to empower women in positions of leadership.

“The Business School provides an optimal environment in which women can gain the skills and knowledge necessary to succeed in their career aspirations,” said Ms Weissman.

Director of the MBA program, Professor Guy Ford, also congratulated Ms Langton on the award and her career to date.

“We are looking forward to welcoming Adele back to the University of Sydney and into our newest cohort of the MBA,” said Professor Ford.

“We identify with the passion Adele has voiced on the empowerment of women, and trust that the skills she gains from the MBA will lead her down a path that will enable her to align her career with her passions,” concluded Professor Ford.

This scholarship is open to all women (with Australian citizenship, Australian residency or New Zealand citizenship) who are eligible to apply for the Master of Business Administration (MBA) program at the Business School.