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Department of Premier and Cabinet

Prudence (Pru) Bonham

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Pru Bonham

Awarded for service to the Community, Local Government and Science

Born: 1948

Entered on roll: 2013


…admirable constancy despite her job taking her off on long sea voyages.

Pru Bonham was born in Sydney in 1948. Pru is the former Deputy Lord Mayor of Hobart who, despite time away as a marine biologist, has provided a sense of constancy as an active community volunteer.

Pru was a Hobart City Council Alderman from 1990 to 2002 and Deputy Lord Mayor between 1994 and 2002, serving on nearly every Council committee, including Chairman of Parks and Customer Services. She also served on many external bodies such as Chairman of the Wellington Park Management Trust, and Trustee of the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens.

As an Alderman, Pru worked tirelessly for the community and attended many community and progress association meetings. She advocated for residents on a variety of issues and problems that arose.

Since retiring from Council, Pru is a Life Member of the Australian Local Government Women's Association (ALGWA) Tasmania Branch, and has been a leading force in supporting and mentoring women (and men) who wish to represent their community.

Pru spent 26 years as a marine biologist with the CSIRO conducting essential environmental research. Marine expeditions have taken Pru from the Antarctic to the tropical waters of Papua New Guinea and Western Australia.  Pru's research included identifying plankton, ecological studies of microscopic ocean flora and fauna, and water quality studies in the Huon Estuary and D'Entrecasteaux Channel. She has also worked in meat science and in pathology testing human cell samples.

Recognised for her considerable people skills, Pru has volunteered for a number of years at the Mission to Seafarers Hobart Station making international seafarers feel welcome in Hobart. Pru's computer skills are valued by seafarers, who have little English, and are assisted to connect with their family.

Pru has been a Fellow of Jane Franklin Hall, University of Tasmania since 2006, providing advice and support to students as they begin their university studies.

 Tasmanian Honour Roll of Women