Q. What’s your link to Townsville?
Townsville is where I developed my career in Social Work after studying at James Cook University.
Q. Where are you now?
I work in public policy for the Federal Government in Canberra. One of my opportunities is working on issues of national importance, and developing social policy that has the potential to positively impact the lives of all Australians – not just confined to one region or community.
Q. What project are you currently working on?
After university, I worked for Government in the UK and facilitated the first intercountry adoption between the UK and the US. It was a landmark case-law precedence and exposed me to the interconnectedness of social policy, law and human rights. I then gained a Master of Human Rights and Master of Politics and Public Policy, so I could legitimately draw linkages between the two.
Since then I’ve worked in areas of sex discrimination, tackling gender inequality, disability discrimination and housing policy. I’ve also worked with Indigenous communities in remote and regional Australia, and written some academic pieces on this work. I’ve drawn from my combination of research, policy and project work to volunteer my skills to non-government organisations as a Board Director. I currently sit as Chair and Board Director for Australia’s longest running women’s refuge and sit as an advisor to the ACT Government’s Ministerial Advisory Council for Women.
Throughout my time I’ve learned the meaning of ‘hustle beats talent, when talent doesn’t hustle’. In other words, success isn’t just down to talent – so much of it boils down to having a positive attitude, applying yourself and setting clear goals.
Q. Do you still come ‘home’ to Townsville to visit?
I was in Townsville recently to receive an Outstanding Alumni Award from JCU, which was a great honour.