Keynote Speakers

Dr David Kershaw

Title: Science and Technology Support for Naval Shipbuilding.


David Kershaw started in Defence as a Cadet Engineer with Navy Material in 1987 and transferred to the then DSTO in 1989 following completion of a B.Sc(Hons) in Physics and a B.E in Electrical and Computer Systems Engineering. From 1989 through to 1999 he worked in the area of torpedoes, torpedo defence and undersea warfare, covering circuit analysis through signal processing to operations research. During this time he also completed a PhD in Tracking Systems.

Dr Kershaw was appointed as Head of the Torpedoes & Torpedo Defence Group in 1999 before also assuming responsibility for Undersea Warfare Operations Analysis in 2002.  During 2003 and 2004 he was the Navy Scientific Adviser before returning to DSTO Edinburgh as the Air Warfare Destroyer S&T Adviser in 2005 and 2006. From September 2006 through January 2007 he was acting Research Leader in Surface Ship Operations with a focus on Combat Systems.

In 2007 Dr Kershaw was appointed as Head of the Torpedo Systems Group within the Undersea Sensors and Weapon Systems Branch in Maritime Operations Division.  In this role he had responsibility for all DSTO support to torpedoes and torpedo defence for the RAN. He then became Head of the Submarine Combat Systems Group in May 2010 before assuming the role of Research Leader Submarine Systems and SEA 1000 (Future Submarine) S&T Adviser in July 2011.  He was promoted to the position of Research Leader Undersea Command and Control in July 2014.

David was appointed as Chief Maritime Division with Defence Science and Technology in May 2016.

Dr Margaret Law

Title: How Innovation can change a submarine business performance paradigm.


Dr Margaret Law has a PhD in physics and over 20 years experience in science and technology leadership within the Defence industry. Margaret began her career as an Opto-Electronics Scientist for Vision Abell, later Tenix Defence and was instrumental in the delivery of bespoke laser and electro optic systems that were at the forefront of technology for the time.

After 11 years with Tenix, Margaret joined ASC Pty Ltd. At ASC, Margaret has held a number of different roles, all with a focus on innovation and capability development. In her current role as Submarine Capability and Strategy Manager, she has established ASC’s Science and Technology Outreach program and sought to identify and implement future innovation, capability development and technology enhancements.

Mr Paddy Fitzpatrick

Title: Australia's Naval Shipbuilding Project - an Update.


Paddy Fitzpatrick graduated from the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland in 1986. His first job was with Short Brothers of Belfast working on the SEACAT Missile project including the variant fitted to the Royal Australian Navy ships. After working on various missile and aircraft projects, Paddy moved to the USA to work for Boeing Commercial Aircraft.

Since that time, Paddy has worked in engineering, project management and executive roles for a number of companies including Airbus, Agusta Helicopter and Gamesa Aeronautica in various locations in North America, Europe and Asia.

In 2004 Paddy and his family moved to Australia to take up work with GKN Aerospace. In 2012 he joined Defence in the role of Program Manager Amphibious Deployment and Sustainment, before the Maritime Acquisition area was created in 2013, encompassing LHD, ADAS, Future Surface Naval Shipbuilding projects and Present Maritime Upgrade projects. In early 2015 Paddy took on the role of Director General Future Frigates.