Bond University has appointed Queensland’s Chief Entrepreneur Mark Sowerby as an Honorary Adjunct Professor in the Bond Business School.
Mr Sowerby is the founder of Blue Sky Alternative Investments Ltd, an alternative asset manager investment company which in the last 10 years has grown into one of Australia’s top 300 listed companies, with a market capitalisation in excess of $500 million and 85 staff across two continents.
Mr Sowerby is a strong advocate of innovation and commercialisation, which was recognised by Queensland Premier The Hon. Annastacia Palaszczuk when she appointed him as Queensland’s first Chief Entrepreneur last month.
Executive Dean of Bond Business School, Professor Terry O’Neill said Mr Sowerby had been a long-time supporter of Bond and was an integral part of its industry and community networks.
“Mark has already made a valuable contribution to Bond on many fronts, and we look forward to formalising our relationship with him,” Professor O’Neill said.
“He is currently personally mentoring one of our students, has been a generous supporter of our Indigenous Scholarships Program for many years, and regularly welcomes Bond students in internship and work placement roles in his Blue Sky offices in Australia and New York.
“Mark is an outstanding role model for our students and his reputation as a pioneer and innovator is an excellent fit with the Bond Business Commercialisation Centre and our Entrepreneurship Program.
“In fact, innovation and entrepreneurship are part of our DNA here at Bond University. We were Australia’s first and only truly independent, not for profit university, founded by one of the nation’s most well-known entrepreneurs, Alan Bond.
“We are delighted to recognise Mark’s contribution, and formalise our partnership with him, through his appointment as an Honorary Adjunct Professor in Bond Business School.”
Mr Sowerby said he was honoured by the appointment and looked forward to the opportunity to engage more deeply with the university, its students and alumni.
“I continue to be very impressed with the quality of education on offer at Bond University, the calibre of its students, its research and close ties to industry, and its absolute commitment to give back to the community.
“I’m also very excited by the work Bond is doing around entrepreneurship, and look forward to working with the University to help build more and stronger pathways for young entrepreneurs from university to industry.
“I am a firm believer that investing and mentoring in young start-ups is crucial to successful growth, especially here in Queensland, and as Honorary Adjunct Professor at Bond I will have an even greater opportunity to do this in the future.”
In 2015, Mr Sowerby was recognised as Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year for Queensland, received the University of Queensland’s Alumni Excellence Award, and successfully swam across the English Channel capping of a remarkable year.
Earlier this year, Mr Sowerby handed the business over to the Blue Sky team ten years after it was established to spend more time with his family and to help with projects that have a positive social impact.