Bridget Loudon has smashed the age record for a non-executive director on the ASX 200 by 12 years, suggesting some big businesses are seeking something a little different from an independent board director.
But it’s not just age that Loudon brings to the board — it’s a different kind of experience.
She’s a tech entrepreneur, as the founder of Expert360, which she started in her mid-twenties following a career at Bain Capital.
She doesn’t follow the usual trajectory of an ASX board director either — Loudon wasn’t actually seeking out a role. Instead, she was approached by Telstra chair John Mullen more than a year ago.
On her appointment, Mullen said Loudon will bring a unique perspective to the board, and highlighted her expertise in transformation, notably as Telstra is embarking on massive organisational change through its T22 strategy.
“Her youth and entrepreneurial startup experience, in particular, will provide a fresh and unique perspective to ensure we are considering a range of views as we navigate Telstra through the next period,” he said in a statement.
Expert360 is a marketplace of freelance jobs for skilled consultants, which has just secured an additional $12 million in funding.
In 2014, the platform saw Loudon named Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year at the Women’s Agenda Leadership Awards.
She has since gone on to win numerous other awards.
In 2017, she was one of just two women to make the Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia list.
Loudon said she is “humbled” to be part of the Telstra journey, but added that she is still fully committed to Expert360 as its CEO.
The Australian Financial Review reports that Loudon is the youngest non-executive director by 12 years.
She’s also 23 years younger than the previous youngest Telstra board member.
Afterpay chief revenue officer Nick Molar is 30, but he’s an executive director.
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There are three other women on the Telstra board: Elana Rubin, Nora Scheinkestel and Margaret Seale.
Loudon is set to start her new role on August 14.
This article was first published by Women’s Agenda.