Penny Wilson

Penny Wilson

Senior Partner & Sector Lead, Government and Public Policy

Government & Public Policy | Senior Executive

Penny is a Senior Partner at SHK and is sector lead for SHK across Government & Public Policy.

Penny specialises in executive and board appointments within government and national non-profit organisations. She brings practical understanding, broad cross-sectoral networks and an appreciation of contemporary leadership methodologies. Penny began her professional career in the Commonwealth public service, returning to the Victorian public service as an executive after a series of leadership roles in public policy, research, lobbying, and regulation in community services and peak bodies, including as Chief Executive Officer before joining SHK’s executive search practice in 2015.

As a search consultant, Penny is sought out by clients for her frank advice, considered insight and practical experience, and her flexibility in adapting to the needs of boards and Ministers, particularly in evolving processes related to key policy agendas. Her advisory work includes partnering with non-profit clients in succession planning for C-Suite roles.

Penny has interests in women and leadership, and in assisting internal candidates to participate fully in executive selection processes. She has extensive governance experience, including three terms as a Director of the Adult, Community and Further Education Board of Victoria, a Governor-in-Council appointment.

Penny holds a Bachelor of Social Sciences (Honours) from La Trobe University, complemented by qualifications in business, communication and training. A Williamson Fellow with Leadership Victoria, Penny is also a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Recent appointments

  • Deputy Secretary – state government

  • Chair and Directors – state-wide board

  • Chief Executive Officer – local government

  • Chief Executive Office – institute of TAFE

  • Chief Executive Officer – national non-profit education and advocacy organisation

  • Chief Executive Officer – key regional health provider

  • Commissioner – Australian area, government

  • Commissioner – international, government

  • Executive Directors – state government

  • Executive Director, legal and governance – statutory authority

  • General Counsel – state government

  • State Chief Engineer – state government.