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Kirsty Wright Travels from Gold Coast, QLD

Kirsty Wright


  • Achievements
  • Authenticity
  • Female Speaker
  • Inspirational
  • Issues
  • Leadership
  • Management
  • Personal Development
  • Resilience
  • Science

Dr Kirsty Wright is a Forensic Biologist who has worked in Major Crime, assisted in the 2002 Bali Bombings, led the international Thai Tsunami Victim Identification DNA Team, was Manager of the National DNA Database during the national expansion, has worked in academia for over ten years, and is a Squadron Leader in the Royal Australian Air Force helping to recover and identify fallen Australian soldiers from WWI, WWII and current conflicts. 

Kirsty was in the 2012 Courier Mail’s Top 50 Best and Brightest of Queensland, chosen in Australia’s 100 Women of Influence, and was a finalist in the Global Influence category.  She was included in the 2015 Who’s Who of Australian Women list, and received the Queensland Police Commissioner’s Award ‘for valuable contribution to the investigation into the murder of Daniel Morcombe’. 

Kirsty was named The Australian newspaper’s Australian of the Year for 2022 for her work on the Shandee Blackburn murder investigation as part of the number one rating podcast ‘Shandee’s Story’ which triggered the Inquiry into Queensland DNA testing.  The Inquiry exposed the worst forensic disaster in Australia’s history and one of the most serious failures in our national criminal justice system.  Kirsty currently works for the Australian Army developing forensic capability for counter-terrorism and national security needs.

Keynote Titles

  • The Forensic DNA Inquiry
  • After the Wave - DNA Identification of Missing Children from the Boxing Day Tsunami
  • Managing in a Disaster - The Boxing Day Tsunami


An astounding presentation that touched the hearts of all there. Because of her engaging presentation style despite the horrific picture she painted I can today recall many of the points she made on how to build and maintain a cohesive team in extremely trying circumstances which is equally applicable to building a team within our workplaces.

Renal Society Of Australia

Reinforced the importance of leadership in maintaining team cohesion, motivation and supportive care in a stressful work environment. A moving presentation which touched my heart and will leave a lasting impression.

Queensland Health

I attended the talk given by DNA Forensic Biologist Kirsty Wright regarding her involvement with the Boxing Day Tsunami and would like to give you some feedback. I really enjoyed Kirsty's presentation on a number of levels. The scientific detail really appealed to me and was informative but at a level that most lay people would be able to understand. Coupled with the presentation slides, the situation was put into perspective in a compassionate and respectful manner and showed us a side of the tragedy we didn't see after the TV cameras and reporters went home. Kirsty's style was relaxed and approachable and she welcomed questions and engaged with her audience warmly and openly. I felt comfortable asking a question and Kirsty's answer was personal and thought provoking. Kirsty spoke about the team work and how as the manager she supported the team and individuals, methods of handling difficult situations, the importance of recognising participation and the individual, celebrating milestones and focusing on common goals. While the subject matter may be (thankfully) alien to most of us, the concepts and ideas are certainly translatable to our everyday work and personal lives. Glad I attended. Certainly reminds me of perspective.

Logan City Council


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