The 2016 Shortlisted Nominees: George Foster

George Foster is one of the most prolific individuals in Australian education. He holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in economics from the University of Sydney and a doctorate from the Graduate School of Business, Stanford University. He taught at the University of Chicago and the Australian Graduate School of Management prior to joining the Graduate School of Business faculty at Stanford University.

His two main areas of research and teaching are Entrepreneurship and Sports Management. Below are some aspects that highlight his dedication to promoting Australia's more global interests on a academic level: 

1. George is active in speaking to multiple political, business and student delegations from Australia over many years. Given Stanford's location and role in Silicon Valley, it's only natural that delegations visiting the U. S. Bay Area seek to have presentations and require networking introductions from Stanford. George has been doing multiple such presentations and introductions working with both the Australian Embassy in Washington and the Consul-General/Trade Commissioner in San Francisco, starting in the 1980's when George Shultz as U.S. Secretary of State called him for a meeting with Prime Minister Hawke. Since then, he has been continuing such efforts on a very regular basis, a recent example being a delegation led by Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop and Ambassador Kim Beazley. Attached is a October 2015 presentation for the Bishop/Beazley delegation.

2. George is active in the Australian American Leadership Dialogue, (AALD) between Australia and the U.S. for over 5 years and has been very involved in the planning and hosting of the Stanford component of the Leadership Dialogue. The participants are a range of political, business and philanthropic leaders as well as Young Leaders. Participants travelling to Stanford have included multiple Prime Ministers, such as Julia Gillard and Malcolm Turnbull. 

3. George is active in attracting Australian Executives to Stanford Executive Programs. Since 1996, has directed a 2 week Executive Program for Growing Companies (EPGC). He recently coded the "Business Challenges" that participants over a twenty year period have submitted  as part of this two week program. After the U.S., Australia was the most represented country with participants attending the program. This due to George's continually seeking as many avenues and levers as possible to attract Australian participants to EPGC. A June 2016 Financial Times survey ranked Stanford GSB as #1 best "MBA program for entrepreneurship." 

4. George has frequent meetings with Australian entrepreneurs, both in the US and in Australia. Due to his Stanford GSB position, as well as being a Board Member of Allen & Buckeridge in the 1990s- 2000's, he has been part of an Australian mafia in Silicon Valley that are often called on by any number of diverse people/groups to give advice to early stage entrepreneurs or Australian companies seeking to set up activities in Silicon Valley.