Bridget Loudon has smashed the age record on the ASX 200 for a non-executive director by years, becoming an example of a company seeking something different from an independent board director.
According to reports by the AFR and Forbes, Loudon is 32 years old.
But it’s not just age; it’s a different kind of experience that Bridget brings to the board. She’s a tech entrepreneur, as the founder of Expert 360, which she started in her mid twenties following a career at Bain Capital.
Nor does she follow the usual trajectory of an ASX board director — Loudon wasn’t actually seeking out a role. Instead, she was approached by Telstra chair John Mullen more than a year ago.
On her appointment, Mullen said Loudon will bring a unique perspective to the board and highlighed her expertise in transformation, notably as Telstra is embarking on massive organisational change through its T22 strategy.
“Her youth and entrepreneurial start-up experience in particular will provide a fresh and unique perspective to ensure we are considering a range of views as we navigate Telstra through the next period,” he said in a statement.
Expert360 is a marketplace of freelance jobs for skilled consultants which has just secured an additional $12 million in funding.
In 2014, the platform saw Bridget named Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year at the Women’s Agenda Leadership Awards. She has since gone on to win numerous other awards. In 2017, she was one of just two women to make the Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia list.
“Bridget understands and is a leader in how organisations transform themselves to capture the opportunities presented by developments in technology,” Mullen said.
“Her passion for solving customer problems and entrepreneurial thinking is also evident and critical for Telstra in today’s environment.
“Throughout this time, her professional drive was matched by an impressive desire to create positive outcomes for society using technology, something we are absolutely focused on at Telstra.”
Bridget said she is “humbled” to be part of the Telstra journey, but added that she is still fully committed to Expert360 as its CEO.
The AFR reports that Bridget is the youngest non-executive director by 12 years. She’s 23 years younger then the previous youngest Telstra board member. Afterpay chief revenue officer Nick Molar is 30, but he’s an executive director.
There are three other women on the Telstra board: Elana Rubin, Nora Scheinkestel and Margaret L Seale.
Bridget’s role started last August 14.