Len Neist | Chief Engineer
Public Transport Victoria | Australia

Len Neist, Chief Engineer, Public Transport Victoria

Len Neist is an executive manager and experienced senior systems engineer.  He has extensive experience in facilitating an understanding of the risks associated with change and putting effective management strategies in place.  Whether it is organisational, technology, process or operational change, Len has exercised leadership accountability with great success.  Len has experience and training in enterprise and strategic risk management, integrated logistic support, safety systems engineering, safety management system maturity assessment, aerospace engineering, systems analysis and definition, major incident investigation and executive coaching.  He has gained this experience working in aerospace, defence, national security, surface transport and workplace health and safety environments.
Len graduated from UOW with a BE(Mech) specialising in thermal power and complex systems control.  He worked in the RAAF as an aerospace engineer serving in roles such as transport logistics base engineer, propulsion systems engineer, aircraft maintenance engineer and manager maintenance policy.  After completing a MSc in logistic/systems engineering management Len established the systems engineering requirements for the F111 Avionics Upgrade project and was the Project Manager for the F111 Automatic Test Equipment project.  He then was responsible for development and management of Air Force engineering policy and published policy on Systems Engineering, Software Engineering, Configuration Management, Airworthiness Management, Weapon Systems Integration and Reliability – Availability – Maintainability Management.  His final role was reporting to Chief of Air Force as the Director Airworthiness Coordination and Policy.
After leaving the RAAF Len consulted in defence systems engineering, rail technology systems, risk management and project requirements definition.  For the Australian Rail Track Corporation, he assisted in development of the Advanced Train Management System requirements and was the program director for the NSW train control consolidation projects.  During this time, Len was selected to be the project director for the organisational safety assessment  of the rail operator and safety regulator as part of the Waterfall rail disaster Special Commission of Inquiry.  He was also selected as the principal risk advisor to the  SCOI. 
In recognition of his work in identifying improvements in safety regulation, Len was appointed to the Advisory Board of the NSW Independent Transport Safety Regulator.  Len was later appointed as Chief Executive of ITSR by the NSW Minister for Transport.  Whilst performing this role he provided regulatory oversight over several major rail projects including the Epping-Chatswood development, the Waratah rolling stock procurement, the North-West Metro project and the creation of the TfNSW Asset Standards Authority. During this time, he was also selected to be risk advisor to an international working group commissioned to assist Abu Dhabi Dept of Transport in the development of a 30 year strategic surface transport safety and security strategy.  He was also directly appointed by the Abu Dhabi DoT to assist in development of the Emirate’s surface transport safety and security legislation.
After assisting in the establishment of the Office of National Rail Safety Regulator and the development of the NSW Service Level Agreement with ONRSR, Len took up a position as Executive Director Health & Safety, WorkSafe Victoria where he was responsible for 300 staff and a $42m annual budget to encourage improvement and enforce legal compliance in respect to workplace health and safety in Victoria.
Len was appointed as Director Shadow Operator for Melbourne Metro Rail which in 2015.  In July 2016 he was appointed Chief Engineer Public Transport Victoria responsible for Network Integrity and Assurance.
Master of Science (Logistic Management)  Air Force Institute of Technology, Dayton Ohio USA
Bachelor Engineering (Mechanical)  University of Wollongong, NSW Australia
Member Australian Institute of Company Directors
Master Project Director   Australian Institute of Project Management
Lead Investigator  ICAM process   Safety Wise Australia
Apollo Root Cause Analysis processes


Day One @ 14:00

Defining transport capability using systems engineering to assure asset integrity

Applying a system of systems approach to whole of life asset management of transport capabilities ensures new technologies and changing transport assets can be assured and accepted without compromising transport network integrity. This presentation will discuss how these disciplines are being introduced into the Victorian public transport sector to assure the significant infrastructure projects under development.

Day One @ 14:20

PANEL: Key considerations in Asset Renewal – Balancing Investment, Risk and Cost

  •     As mature rail operators in the region are facing the issue of aging rail assets, a decision has to be made between refurbishment and replacement of assets. What are the key factors that need to be taken into account before a decision is made?
  •     What are the best practices in life cycle costing and asset renewal planning?
  •     How do we structure cost, funding and investment effectively to ensure the sustainability of rail assets?
  •     How will rail asset management evolve with the application of new technology in the next 5-10 years? 

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