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Department of Premier and Cabinet

Communities, Sport and Recreation Tasmania

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Tasmanian Women's Council membership


Annette Rockliff (Chair) - North West
I grew up in Devonport, the eldest of five children blessed with a close family - and a very large extended family network. My husband and I are the extremely proud parents of two adult children.

I believe, having lived my whole life on the North-West Coast, my life experiences, my work roles, my community commitments and most recently my role as Alderman on Devonport City Council, give me insight into a wide range of issues facing women in regional Tasmania.

I have served as Treasurer of the Tasmanian branch of the Australian Local Government Women's Association for the past five years. As part of my Alderman role, I have served on several committees which focus on the needs of women and families including Chairing the Building Families Committee, membership of the Maritime Museum Working Group, Arboretum Management Committee and several other committees, all of which work to understand the needs and improve the facilities and services in the city. In the past I have served on various community organisations which eventually led me to standing for Local Government.

My current working role (eight years) is Office Manager of a not for profit organisation which offers counselling, specialising in suicide prevention training, suicide intervention counselling and post-vention support, so I have a very realistic view of the challenges facing women in our regional community.

Amanda Quealy (Deputy Chair) - South
I have had an executive career that spans over 25 years in the health and ageing sector. Prior to taking up the CEO role of The Hobart Clinic Association, I was Head of Strategy and Development for Australian Unity looking after their retirement living, aged care and community care business division.

As President of the Tasmanian Private Hospital Association, I represent Tasmania on the National Council. I am Chair of the Tasmanian Alcohol and Drug Tribunal, Member of the Ministers Health Services Establishment Advisory Committee Council and Vice President of the Australian College of Health Service Managers (Tas Branch).

In 2010, I won the Telstra Business Women's Award and in 2013 was named in the 'Top 100 Women of Influence' by the Australian Financial Review and Westpac. I am currently completing my Master's in Business and Corporate Governance.

Alywn Friedersdorff

Alywn Friedersdorff - North West
I have been well informed and actively involved with women’s issues throughout my career path and leisure pursuits and have a good understanding of the many issues that confront women. My service on a number of Boards is a means of continuing to serve my community, yet at the same time keeping my brain alert, informing my awareness of issues and as a challenge to ensure that older women are accepted as part of the mix on Boards.

I am proud to become a member of the Tasmanian Women’s Council knowing that I have much to contribute having been an educator, a local government elected member, a mentor, and an advocate for rural and remote women.

Dr Nicola Goc

Dr Nicola Goc - South
I grew up in Berriedale Bay long before Mona made the suburb a draw-card for tourists and visitors. The greatest message my parents imbued in their three daughters was the importance of an education and today I am dedicated to empowering women and girls through education and life-long learning. I am a Senior Lecturer in Journalism, Media and Communication at the University of Tasmania and came to academia after a career in journalism and media.

I see compassion as the greatest driver of change and I have a fundamental belief that the media has a social responsibility to fairly, effectively and compassionately inform society on all issues of inequality and injustice. I am also an advocate for the ethical use of social media as a tool of citizen empowerment in the global digital age.

My research is focused on media history, ethics and representation, particularly female representation. I was a 2014 Fellow at the National Sound and Film Archive researching post-war migrant media. My current research project received a 2015 Tasmanian Community Fund Grant to research Tasmanian migrant women and their use of family photography as social media in the pre-digital era.

I have a passion for telling women’s stories, particularly stories about disadvantaged and marginalized women, and have written several social history books as well as academic texts. I am founding President of Convict Women’s Press Inc., a not-for-profit publishing company dedicated to publishing histories of convict women.

It is indeed a great honour to be given the opportunity to contribute to addressing the issues facing women and girls in Tasmania today, in particular those pressing issues outlined in the Tasmanian Women's Plan 2013-18.

Heidi La Paglia

Heidi La Paglia - South
I was brought up primarily by my mother who has run successful Art businesses while at the same time fulfilling her role as a mother and working as a full-time nurse. I think this is what led me to take an interest in gender inequality. I was never socialised to accept the notion that women are inferior to men.

In recent years, I have pursued this interest in my university studies. I am currently completing an Arts degree majoring in Gender Studies and Sociology. I am proud of my achievements and love taking the opportunity to chat about feminism and social issues. In addition to this, I've had a lot of involvement with social justice organisations and feminist movements. I am currently on the State team of VGen Tasmania, working on empowering youth to take action on Global Poverty.

I also write articles for online magazines about social issues and I am the Women's Officer for the Tasmanian University Union. Through this role I have a lot of contact with other female students as well as organisations such as the Women's Shelter and Women's Health Centre.

I am looking forward to contributing to the Tasmanian Women's Council.

Dr Suzanne Martin

Dr Suzanne Martin - North
I am a veterinarian and have worked in mixed rural practice in many rural and regional communities in Tasmania and northern Australia and feel very privileged to call the beautiful Meander Valley home.

I am a graduate of the Tasmanian Leaders Program and the Australian Rural Leadership Program and have recently completed a Graduate Certificate in Australian Rural Leadership through James Cook University. I have held roles on the executive committees of the Australian Veterinary Association (Tasmanian Division) and Tasmanian Women in Agriculture and am a current member of the Legal Profession Disciplinary Tribunal.

Having worked all my professional life in rural and remote Australia I have a practical understanding of the vital role communication, medical and educational services are to the survival of these communities and the industries they support and the challenges (and rewards) of living, working and raising children in rural areas.

I am excited to have the opportunity to make a contribution towards addressing some of the issues of relevance to women in Tasmania and have a particular interest in the areas of education, literacy, community development and resilience, environmental issues and youth mentoring and support.

Julie Marsaban

Julie Marsaban - South
Born in Jakarta, I spent 5 years of my formative years in Sydney when my father was posted as the Education and Cultural Attaché in Sydney where and when I had learned and mastered English as my third language (Indonesian and Javanese being my first and second). I earned my Bachelor degree in Psychology at University of Indonesia (1974) and MBA at the University of Massachusetts, USA (1983).

I worked in aid projects in the aftermath of the Aceh "Boxing Day 2004" tsunami with Soroptimist International of Jakarta and also with an AusAID tsunami recovery project (2005-2006) ensuring that women are included in the reconstruction planning.   Before moving to Tasmania in 2010 I was the Communications Advisor the to Indonesian President's Special Envoy on the MDGs.

Over 35 years I have worked throughout the Indonesian archipelago mainly in health education and advocating for women's and girls' right to education and reproductive rights.

I am now President of Soroptimist International of Hobart and the Honorary Secretary of The International Wall of Friendship and The Tasmanian Indonesian Business Council.

Holly Mason

Holly Mason-WhiteSouth
I grew up in Tasmania, completing a combined Law/Arts (Political Science) degree before leaving the island for work. Pursuing a career in human rights took me to diverse parts of the world and provided me with opportunities to better understand the interplay between gender, discrimination and disadvantage. I also gained experience in the application of human and child rights programming, both at an international level, and on the ground working with homeless children and adolescents in Mongolia.

It was always my hope, however, to return to Tasmania, as I believe that our state offers unique opportunities and a high quality of life.

I currently work within policy at the Sexual Assault Support Service (SASS), turning my mind to a large variety of gender-based issues including legal reform, policy formulation, social change and advocacy. I also work as a consultant for the peak national Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander child and family services organisation, focusing on family support and early childhood education. I am currently completing a Masters in community development and anthropology, specialising in gender studies.

Through my work for the not-for-profit sector I have gained experience across a range of social policy sectors. I am passionate about utilising my skills and experience to give a voice to vulnerable and marginalised groups within our society.

Alison Overeem

Alison Overeem (nee Smith) - South
I am a Proud Palawa Woman from south east Tasmania. I am the single mum of two adult children.  I have a degree in early childhood education and management.  I was director of the Aboriginal Children's Centre from 1989-2013.

I am currently community development officer at Leprena, Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress (UAICC Tasmania).  I believe we can walk together as
luna rrala  (strong women) in compassion and respect for our unique stories, and sharing of stories. I am driven by culture, family, empowerment, and creating safe spaces to build hope and dignity.

Kate Beer - North West

I was born and raised in Devonport. After living interstate for a number of years I returned to raise my daughter in Tasmania.  Previously I have run my own small business and have been the Manager of Devonport Community House for the past 10 years.

I love community development work, advocating and facilitating the opportunity for people to work together to deliver change in their local area.  I enjoy participating in statewide forums and am currently President of Neighbourhood Houses Tasmania and a representative on the Australian Neighbourhood Houses and Centres Association.  I am also a member of Soroptimist International Devonport participating in advocacy, fundraising and awareness of female rights in line with Soroptimist’s ethos of aspiring to realise potential.  I am excited to be a part of a group of women working towards equality and participation for all women.

Leonie Stewart -  North West

Further Information

For more information about the Council and applying please contact Communities, Sport and Recreation.

All correspondence to the Chair to be addressed to:

Tasmanian Women’s Council
GPO Box 123
HOBART   TAS   7001