Save the date – AER to host lecture in honour of Dr Gill Owen on 7 February 2018

On 7 February 2018 the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) will host a lecture to commemorate Dr Gill Owen and her contribution in helping the AER to improve consumer participation in our decisions setting network revenues.

Ms Sharon Darcy, Director of Sustainability First in the United Kingdom, will deliver the keynote address. The theme for the lecture will be on improving consumer participation in utility decision-making, particularly given the transformation of the energy sector. This was the focus of much of Dr Owen’s work with the AER.

Dr Owen was instrumental in helping us to establish our Consumer Challenge Panel and was also a founding member. She was also involved in many other projects focussing on sustainability and vulnerable consumers.

The lecture will be held in Melbourne and attendance is free of charge. All interested stakeholders are welcome to attend. Registration details will be provided shortly.

In the meantime, we invite you to please save the date.

Date: Wednesday, 7 February 2018
Time: 3:30 pm – 6:00 pm (lecture and networking)
Venue: TBC – Melbourne
Contact: General inquiries – AERInquiry@aer.gov.au

About Sharon Darcy

Sharon is a champion of consumer concerns in energy and water. Sharon was elected to the Council of Which? in January 2015 and was formerly a long-standing board member of Consumer Futures and its predecessor bodies (Consumer Focus and energywatch). She is a member of the UK Regulators Network Expert Panel, a board member of the Solicitors Regulation Authority and a member of Ofgem's Consumer Progress Panel that has been set up to provide advice on the implementation of the CMA energy market investigation remedies.

A qualified accountant, Sharon began her career working on value for money studies in the privatisation and regulation team at the National Audit Office. Until 2016, Sharon was a Trustee of the new workplace pension provider NEST where she chaired the Risk Committee, and until March 2017 a lay member of the Standards Committee of the House of Commons. For the last six years, Sharon was a member of Ofgem’s panel to assess the network innovation competitions, plus a member of the Ofgem ‘Consumer Challenge Group’ (ensuring that the consumer interest is represented in setting prices for monopoly energy businesses). She was a member of Ofwat’s Customer Advisory Panel for the 2014 water price review and the previous Ofwat Future Regulation Advisory Panel. Previous roles also include chair of a Citizens’ Advice Bureau.

Issued date: 
20 December 2017
AER reference: 
AC 185/17
Contact: 
AER General inquiries AERInquiry@aer.gov.au