Meet MBS Academy Trainers

We have attracted experienced industry experts from companies such as Microsoft, PwC, government and private sectors who bring years of expertise and knowledge in the areas of Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things, Cybersecurity, Blockchain and Digital Transformation.

Mr Mario Bojilov

Areas of Teaching: Big Data, Cybersecurity, Digital Transformation


Mario has worked in the area of Data Analytics and Business Improvement since 1994.  He is a Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) and a Lecturer in Accounting Information Systems; IS Control and Governance; Enterprise Resource Planning; Systems Analysis and Design.

Over the last 12 years, Mario Bojilov has taught over 1,500 university students and 300 professionals in the areas of Finance, IT, Risk and Audit. He has delivered industry training courses in Australia, UAE, Singapore and Malaysia.

Mario founded Meta Business Systems in 2004 of which he is the current Chief Data Strategist. The company is focused on business improvement, performance monitoring and data governance.  A number of Government and Higher Education organisations, such as Griffith University, Brisbane City Council, Queensland Urban Utilities and Queensland University of Technology have used solutions designed and implemented by Meta Business Systems.  Projects managed by Mario Bojilov covered a variety of key business processes, such as Payroll, Finance, Procurement, Revenue Management, Treasury, HR and others.

Mario Bojilov holds a Master of Engineering Science Degree from the University of Queensland, a Graduate Diploma of Applied Finance and Investment from the Financial Services Institute of Australasia (FINSIA) and is currently a PhD Candidate with research topic in the area of Using Artificial Intelligence for Cybercrime Detection.

Mario Bojilov has co-authored the following articles: Privacy and Big Data and Continuous Auditing and Continuous Monitoring in ERP Environments: Case Studies of Application Implementations.

Mr Mario Bojilov

Areas of Teaching: Big Data, Cybersecurity, Digital Transformation

Ms Melissa Kaplan

Areas of Teaching: Blue Ocean Strategy, Digital Transformation


Melissa assists senior business leaders in imagining, envisioning and designing their future digital state, as a digital transformation evangelist within Microsoft and the wider business community. This is done through relationships with the CxOs of Microsoft clients, existing and new, guiding them through establishment and delivery of transformation programs, in partnership with Microsoft, to ensure exceptional outcomes.

Melissa has over 20 years experience designing and implementing leading-edge digital and technology solutions and strategies across a wide range of clients in multiple industries and government, in Australia, the United States and Europe.

Melissa has worked as a global product manager for Australian and multi-national technology companies, managing clients on the Forbes 100 list. This experience has provided her with the in-depth knowledge required to deliver large complex solutions to meet client requirements. Her expertise in digital, knowledge, information and data systems means she is able to create innovative outcomes for her clients founded on proven technologies and platforms.

Since 2009 Melissa has focused on the development and delivery of digital customer communication solutions. These solutions focus on anywhere personalised messaging ensuring an engaging customer experience.

Melissa is passionate about digital and new media innovation. She has published papers on the application of digital technologies on the customer experience and the impact of digital on the future of information management.

She has presented at multiple industry and technical forums on the application of new and future technologies to improve the customer experience.

Ms Melissa Kaplan

Areas of Teaching: Blue Ocean Strategy, Digital Transformation

Dr Adrian McCullagh

Areas of Teaching: Blockchain


Adrian has degrees in Computer Science and Law(Hons) as well as a PhD in IT Security.  He obtained his PhD from the Information Security Research Centre at the Queensland University of Technology. He has been practising in IT law for more than 30 years.  He is a member of the Queensland Law Society and a member of the American Bar Association.  In 1999 he was the QUT Faculty of Information Technology Alumnus of the year.  Even though in private practice he continues to undertake research matters with academics at Griffith University and the University of Queensland and has published in a wide variety of academic journals in the USA, UK and Australia. He is a member of:

  • the Intellectual Property and Information Technology Committee for the Queensland Law Society;
  • Standards Australia Technical Committee investigating Blockchain standards (IT-041);
  • Digital Commerce Association Intellectual Property Blockchain Committee.

Adrian’s current research interests include Blockchain and its uses in supply chain management, Decentralised Autonomous Organisations, Identity Management and the development of Smart contracts in a commercial environment.  He is providing advice to a number of high profile organisations who want to investigate whether Blockchain technology is suited to their business operations.

Dr Adrian McCullagh

Areas of Teaching: Blockchain

Mr Daniel Newby

Areas of Teaching: Data Analytics; Risk, Control and Audit


Daniel Newby: Paid pessimist - eternal optimist.

Risk, assurance, governance, security, and data analytics specialist.

As a paid pessimist Daniel asks 'so what'?'

But as an eternal optimist wants to know 'why not?'

Working in gaming, finance, government, and not-for-profit (health) industries Daniel has too much experience with under-utilised data and over-used jargon.

Having such varied experience, Daniel has the answer to questions most standard assurance programs don't ask, and has developed solutions to problems many risk programs aren't aware exist.

Daniel understands that data lives in a 4D world and many solutions only deliver a 2D view.

He has experience in assessing security risks, and securing environments from both internal and external threats.

Daniel understands that ICT is a piece in the puzzle, and not the panacea to all that ails business.  In fact, he is of the belief that in some cases, relying on ICT may be the problem rather than the solution.

Daniel is the Audit Portfolio Manager - Change and Technology at Brisbane City Council and the ISACA Brisbane president.

Mr Daniel Newby

Areas of Teaching: Data Analytics; Risk, Control and Audit

Mr LaniRefiti

Areas of Teaching: Internet of Things, Cybersecurity


Lani is a 20-year veteran of the information/cybersecurity profession, specialising in emerging technologies such as Internet of Things (IoT) and how they can support our digital transformation initiatives. 

In 2016, he co-founded IoTSec Australia Inc, a not-for-profit research and advocacy initiative to promote secure practices in the Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem and regularly speaks at conferences on the subject. 

Lani is also a Director in PwC's Digital Trust practice in Brisbane.

Mr Lani Refiti

Areas of Teaching: Internet of Things, Cybersecurity

Dr Nick Tate

Areas of Teaching: Digital Transformation, Cybersecurity


Dr. Nick Tate is a CEO and Company Director and has considerable experience at the level of CIO in two London banks and at the University of Queensland (UQ).  He is co-author of “A Director’s Guide to Governing Information Technology and Cybersecurity”, a book published by the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) and has 18 years’ experience as a Company Director in 11 Australian and 2 US companies.

Nick is a Chair of the Council of ICT Associations (CICTA) and chaired the World Computer Congress in 2010. He was the National President of the Australian Computer Society (ACS) in 2012/2013. Nick is also an adjunct professor in IT and electrical engineering at (UQ) and has written and presented widely on cybersecurity, cloud computing and big data.

He worked on the development of antimissile systems and real-time air traffic control systems before spending 20 years working for investment banks in both London and Australia.

Dr. Tate is National Vice-President (Membership) of the Australian Computer Society, Immediate Past Chair of the Queensland branch and President of SEARCC. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in physics from the University of St Andrews in Scotland, a Master’s degree in computer science, and a PhD in Cybersecurity. He is both a Fellow and Honorary Life Member of the ACS.

Dr Nick Tate

Areas of Teaching: Digital Transformation, Cybersecurity

Mr James Ward

Areas of Teaching: Artificial Intelligence


James Ward is a leading thinker and practitioner in the art of applying Artificial intelligence to the challenge of business strategy, with a particular focus on marketing and distribution in Financial Services.

James has practised his craft working as a consultant with McKinsey & Company and other leading consulting firms, as an industry insider working with some of Australia’s largest Financial Services companies in Banking and Insurance, and as a fundamental academic researcher with the Key Centre for Advanced Computing Sciences.

James holds a B.App.Sc. in Computing Science and a M.Sc. in Artificial Intelligence from UTS and is a former BRW Fast 100 Entrepreneur.  His current area of specialisation is Causal Inference.

Mr James Ward

Areas of Teaching: Artificial Intelligence
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