Fortescue’s CEO for a Day challenges others to look beyond

Oct 26, 2017

171026 CEO for a Day (1000x600)

An Aboriginal woman with a strong personal drive and a sense of responsibility to her family and community has been selected as Fortescue Metals Group’s (Fortescue) tenth CEO for a Day.

Janelle Woodley, a Ngarluma Yindjibarndi woman from the Pilbara, joined Fortescue in 2009 as a cleaner at the Vocational Training and Employment Centre in Pundy. Eight years on, the mother of nine and grandmother of two is now a Supervisor Civil Infrastructure at Fortescue’s Port Operations.

Fortescue Chief Executive Officer Nev Power said Janelle’s career progression demonstrates her commitment to career development and acquiring leadership skills.

“I have been very impressed with Janelle’s journey at Fortescue from VTEC through to her present role at Hedland Operations,” Mr Power said.

“Her strong leadership, positive attitude and engagement with the local community is admirable and she is widely respected across the business.

“We are proud to be able to provide Aboriginal leaders such as Janelle with the opportunity to thrive and succeed at Fortescue.” 

Janelle said the key to her success was her determination to take opportunities when offered and the mentoring she has received from Fortescue leaders over the years.

“I love the family feel of being a part of Fortescue, no matter the role,” she said.

“In order to be both an active mother and strive to be a leader in the workplace, I rely on the support from my mentors and family. With their support I feel I can achieve more than I ever expected – maybe even CEO one day.”

“By taking training and employment opportunities, Aboriginal people can provide a better way of living for our families and communities.”


Inspired by GenerationOne’s CEO for a Day competition, Fortescue’s CEO for a Day program sees Chief Executive Officer Nev Power host an aspiring Aboriginal leader at each quarterly results release. Participants are given the opportunity to work closely with Mr Power and the executive team to experience how the business operates at the highest level.