Alumnus drives career success

Mark Bernhard (BBus(Acc) 1986), the Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer of Shanghai General Motors, has received the CPA Australia ACAA Banking and Finance Award from the Australia-China Alumni Association (ACAA) in honour of his outstanding achievements in the automotive industry.

The awards are presented as part of the ACAA's annual dinner to recognise the contribution and achievements of alumni from Australian universities who are living and working in China.

"Monash nominated Mr Bernhard as his achievements in business have been significant, sustained and have impacted operations in Australia and internationally," Damien Farrell, Executive Director of External Relations, Development and Alumni said.

Mr Bernhard's 28-year international career began at General Motors Holden in Australia where he worked in various roles in the finance function and gained broad experience over a 10-year period.

He then moved to General Manager International Operations in Zurich, Switzerland and then to Detroit in the US to take up financial planning and analysis roles.

In 1999 Mr Bernhard moved to General Motors' Asia Pacific Head Quarters in Singapore, where his roles included leading analysis and approvals for the Daewoo Motor Company acquisition and equity purchase of Fuji Heavy Industries.

He transferred to General Motors China in 2002 to take up the role of Chief Financial Officer (CFO).

I greatly appreciate the nomination and support from Monash University, and was honoured and humbled to receive the award as the nominees in this category and, in fact all categories, have some remarkable achievements.

Mr Mark Bernhard

Monash Business School alumnus

For the next 12 years, he worked as CFO at GM Shanghai General Motors, GM China and GM Holden, assisting to steer the companies through numerous changes. He was a Board Member of GM Holden from 2007 to 2011. He joined Shanghai General Motors as an Executive Committee member and the CFO in 2011.

Mr Bernhard said receiving the award had allowed him to reflect upon his career and back to his beginnings as a Monash student.

"Working in China and being involved in the tremendous growth of the automotive industry over the last 12 years has been extremely rewarding to me both on a professional and personal level," Mr Bernhard said.

"I greatly appreciate the nomination and support from Monash University, and was honoured and humbled to receive the award as the nominees in this category and, in fact all categories, have some remarkable achievements."

In addition to his Monash qualifications, Mr Bernhard was awarded CPA certification in 1991, a MBA in 1995 and a GAIC from the Australian Institute of Company Directors in 2009.

This article has appeared in Monash News.