Women in Data Science Wellington

Women in Data Science Wellington 2019 was organised by:

Kate Kolich

Kate Kolich is the Director of Data Systems and Analytics at the Social Investment Agency, where her team supports data and analytics capability for the social sector by acting as an integrator through the provision of the secure data exchange and developing analytical methods and products to measure outcomes for social wellbeing. 

Kate has over 20 years experience in data and analytics and is the co-ambassador for Women in Data Science Wellington for 2019.  Kate has been involved in the Global WiDS program since 2017 when she was a speaker at Sydney WiDS.  Kate is passionate about creating opportunities for people to thrive and innovate, she is active in promoting women in STEM through her work as a Global Women in Data Science Ambassador where she hosted the inaugural NZ Women in Data Science Conference at The University of Auckland in 2018 .  Kate has been an active member of the MIT Sloan Center for Information Systems Research – Data Research Advisory Board and volunteers as an industry mentor at Victoria University of Wellington.   Kate is described as a role model, trend setter and as ‘having endless energy’ which inspires those around her. She holds a Masters in Information Management from Victoria University of Wellington.

Mary Ellen Gordon

Mary Ellen Gordon is a Senior Lecturer in Information Management and Director of the Masters of Information Management Programme at Victoria University of Wellington. Her academic research focusses on organisational data capabilities and marketing technology. Mary Ellen also has extensive experience working in applied research and data-related roles, including:

  • Founding and leading the team that implements Apple-branded surveys to support marketing of Apple products world-wide.
  • Heading research at Flurry, where she mined insights from app analytics data collected from more than a billion smartphones and tablets each month.
  • Dissecting data coming from a variety of third-party data sources for Apple’s iAd group.
  • Founding and leading organisations that provided research and analytics consulting (Market Truths), data-driven content marketing (Story in the Data), and data training services (Analytics for Us).


Mary Ellen has a PhD from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and Bachelors and Masters’ degrees from Babson College.