Meet the Team

The Cultivate Sponsorship Story.

Katriina Tähkä

Katriina is an expert in people, culture and creating great places to work for everyone.

An employment lawyer by training she has worked in financial services, infrastructure and the legal profession; leading national talent, diversity and leadership portfolios. A ‘people person’ with a serious commercial spine, Katriina understands what it takes to make real, sustainable change happen.

Cultivate Sponsorhip - Warra team members photo
Left to Right: Carlyn Waters, Rebecca Halliday, Katriina Tähkä, Liam Harte

Katriina Tähkä


Katriina identifies as an Australian Born Finn, making social justice, equality and respect for all people (and nature) a part of her DNA.

Katriina founded Cultivate Sponsorship in 2017 to solve the problem of differential access to career pathways within organisations which perpetuates the lack of diverse leadership in our beautiful country. 

Katriina is a former Director of the Diversity Council Australia (DCA) and appointed by the United Nations Alliance of Civilisations (UNAOC) as an Intercultural Leader for the Intercultural Leaders project. Katriina gives back to her community in her role as Chair of the Board of Finncare.

Carlyn Waters


Carlyn is a Kamilaroi woman who has connections to both NSW and Queensland.

Her passion has always been ensuring that there are First Nations people in all levels within her organisation and the public sector. She is known for her ability to identify and grow talented individuals to reach their full potential inside and outside the Australian Public Service. 

Carlyn has held senior positions in the Australian Government as well as operated a side hustle as a business consultant. She is currently a Senior Fellow in the Practice of Business with The Australian University’s College of Business and Economics and a director of the Foundation for National Parks and Wildlife.

Ashlyn Radford


Yaama my name is Ashlyn and I’m a Kamilaroi woman currently based in Canberra.

I am studying a Bachelors in Business Administration and Biotechnology, and have been working for the Cultivate team since early 2023. I’m the Program Officer for the Warra Indigenous Sponsorship Program.

Australian HR Institute

Katriina and Carlyn are members of the Australian HR Institute. The Australian HR Institute (AHRI) is the professional body that supports HR in Australia. AHRI sets HR standards and certifies HR professionals across Australia.

The Australian Institute of Company Directors

Katriina is a member of AICD. The Australian Institute of Company Directors is Australia’s independent and trusted organization for directors and business leaders, dedicated to improving the quality of governance and directorship.

The National Association of Women in Construction

Katriina is a member of NAWIC. The National Association of Women in Construction vision is to create an equitable construction industry where women fullay participate. They help the industry do this by identifying and creating clear pathways for women to have a career in construction, and encouraging all industry sectors increasing women in leadership positions.

Australian Gender Equality Council

Responding to the unacceptably slow pace of change towards gender equality in Australia, leading organizations have come together to form the Australian Gender Equality Council (AGEC), a national not-for-profit organization.

Is sponsorship in your 2024?

Click below to register your interest in the Cultivate Sponsorship Program for next year! But get in quick as there is only limited spots available for our 2024 intake.