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Awarded for service to Industry
Entered on roll: 2005
Sandra Gillanders was born in Fern Tree Gully, in Victoria. Her family owned and operated a horticultural business but she decided to pursue a career in accountancy. She moved into the commercial seafood industry in the early 1990s, initially as accountant, office manager and HR Manager of Poulos Seafood/Tas Crays Pty Ltd. She became General Manager in 1995, a young, female manager in a male-dominated industry.
Sandra has been a significant contributor to increasing the visibility of women in the seafood/fisheries sector. She has encouraged many young people in the industry to develop their skills and was instrumental in establishing the Tasmanian Fishing Industry Council’s first leadership development program in 2004.
Her corporate governance roles include: Director and Treasurer of the Tasmanian Fishing Industry Council (1999-2005); Board of the Tasmanian Aquaculture and Fisheries Institute (2005-current); Australian Maritime College Council (2004-current); Board Member of Seafood Training Tasmania; and the Fishing Industry Training Board (1993-current).
Sandra has received many awards in acknowledgement of her achievements including: being a category winner in the Telstra Tasmanian Businesswoman of the Year (1999 and 2002); Runner up of the Tasmanian Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation; Rural Woman of the Year; a $40,000 scholarship for the Australian Rural Leadership Program; and a Fisheries Research and Development Corporation bursary to represent the Australian seafood industry at the 3rd World Congress of Rural Women in Spain.
She founded WINSC (Women Industry Network Seafood Community) in 1998 in Tasmania. Through this network, she has been able to help other women in the seafood industry build their skills and meet women in similar roles. Her involvement with WINSC has extended nationally, including a period as National President. She has been a strong voice in the National Rural Women’s Coalition, of which she was the National President, ensuring her industry’s issues are heard in these forums.
Sandra’s vision to develop skills for people and mentor their growth ensures that Tasmania will have future leaders to take on the decision-making roles in the seafood/fisheries sector.