Inductees 2015

WA Women's Hall of Fame Inductees


Her Excellency the Honourable Kerry Sanderson AO,Governor of Western Australia

Mrs Kerry Sanderson AO has had a distinguished career in government and business and was named an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2004 for service to the development and management of the port and maritime industries in Australia, and to public sector governance in the areas of finance and transport in Western Australia.

From 2008 to 2011 Mrs Sanderson was Agent General for Western Australia based in London. Immediately prior to taking on the role of Governor Mrs Sanderson was Chairman of Gold Corporation and the independent chair of the State Emergency Management Committee.

She was also a non-executive director of listed companies Downer EDI and Atlas Iron, and a board member of the not-for-profit St John of God Healthcare and of the International Centre for Radio-Astronomy Research.

She was also on the Board of charities Senses Australia and the Paraplegic Benefit Fund and a patron of children’s charity Variety WA as well as patron of the Australian Branch of the Women’s International Shipping and Trading Association. She chairs the alumni of the Committee for Perth.

Mrs Sanderson was installed as the 32nd Governor and the inaugural female Governor of Western Australia on 20 October 2014.


Dr Sue Boyd

Sue Boyd was elected the first woman President of the UWA Student Guild in 1969 (beating good friend Kym Beasley). She was possibly the first woman to head such a body at any Australian University.

She went on to a stellar 34-year career in Australia’s foreign service, one of the earliest woman Ambassadors. She made significant contributions to Australia’s aid program; export business and the development of foreign policy.

Since returning to WA in 2003, Dr Boyd Sue has contributed to WA as member of the UWA Senate and leader of the successful 2013 centenary celebrations; as a non executive Director of Gold Corporation and Volunteering WA; as the first female independent director of the Gelganyem and Kilkayi Aboriginal Trusts in the East Kimberley; and from 2004 to 2012 served as President of the Australian Institute of International Affairs.


Mrs Doolann-Leisha Eatts

As we saw in the film presentation, Doolann-Leisha is a proud Whudjuk Ballardong Elder who dedicates herself to teaching the history of her people to keep their culture alive.

She has contributed her knowledge to heritage and educational programs for 30 years to highlight the Nyungah history of Perth.

Doolann-Leisha a most respected elder who is popular as a speaker and for her moving Welcome to Country, which she sometimes performs with her husband Wally or other family members.

She is one of a few remaining members of the community who can tell the story of her people’s lives in the area around Mt Eliza from the early days of white settlement.

Mrs Eatts is Member of many non-Aboriginal and Nyungah committees, Patron and Member of Yellagoongah House in Joondalup. Worked on Koombah-Jenn personal development programs to improve literacy/numeracy, self-esteem and personal skills for Aboriginal youth.

Doolan-Leisha worked with the state govt for 12 years on programs for young Aboriginal offenders and families. She is a Co-Founder of Aboriginal Urban Services Inc. and Vice-Chairperson since 1987

Her book Our Country, My Nyungah Home includes her family life and grandmother’s story and she has also worked with Murdoch University and the City of Stirling on projects to record traditional knowledge and sites of cultural significance.

She has received several NAIDOC awards and was presented with the ‘Torch-Bearer Medallion’ for forty years of “creating harmony within the Northern Suburbs among People of all Nationalities”.


Ms Tracey Horton

Tracey Horton was the Dean of the Business School of the University of Western Australia (April 2004 to September 2011).

The Academic board of the University with the lifetime award of Emeritus Professor has acknowledged Ms Horton’s contribution - a title usually reserved for tenured professors of greater than 10 years service.

Tracey also contributes pro bono to secondary education in Western Australia as Chairman of the Presbyterian Ladies College (PLC) Council.

As the elected President of the WA Chamber of Commerce and Industry she represents the interests of 9,200 WA companies. (October 2012 to current). Prior to election she served as Vice-President.

Tracey is the Chairman of the Perth Fashion Concepts Incorporated that delivers the annual Perth Fashion Festival that showcases and celebrates WA and national designers.

She is a former Chairman of the Western Australian Museum Foundation and Trustee of the WA Museum and is currently an Ambassador for the cultural institution.

Tracey has been recognised by membership of Chief Executive Women and her current ASX listed directorships are with Automotive Holdings Group, Skilled Group and Navitas.


Mrs Pat Morris AM

Pat Morris has served her community, local government, WA, and Australia with great distinction. For over twenty years as an elected local government member, she has tirelessly and selflessly worked to improve services to her community and opportunities for its people.

In this time, Patricia became the City of Gosnell’s first female Mayor and the first woman to be awarded the WA Local Government Medal.

Under her leadership as mayor from 1989 to 1993 and since 1999, the City of Gosnells has received numerous local and international accolades for its best practice, innovation, vision, and financial management.

In 2001, for example, the city was awarded the International Planning Award in New York for New Urbanism – Better Cities Planning, the first time this award had ever been presented to any organisation outside the USA.

Pat has also provided civic leadership in the local Girl Guides, cricket club, football club, schools, and retirement village and, as a Justice of the Peace since 1981.


Professor Cheryl Praeger AM FAA

Professor Cheryl Praeger, AM FAA, is Australia’s most cited pure mathematician. Also one of the stars of our film presentation, Her contribution has been made not only here in Western Australia, but across Australia and internationally.

In 1996 she was elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science and in 2014 the Academy elected her as Foreign Secretary.

Professor Praeger is Professor of Mathematics at the University of Western Australia. At the end of 2007 she was the first pure mathematician to win an Australian Research Council Federation Fellowship.

Additionally from 2011-2013 Professor Praeger was appointed a member of the Australian Research Council College of Experts, she is also the foundation board member of the Australian Mathematics Trust, Chair of the Australian Mathematics Olympiad Committee, past president of the Australian Mathematical Society, past Chair of the Australian Council of Heads of Mathematical Sciences, and was 2009 Western Australian Scientist of the Year.


Honourable Christine Ann Wheeler AO, QC

The Honourable Christine Ann Wheeler AO, QC is a former judge in the Supreme Court of Western Australia. From 2005 to 2010, she was an inaugural judge of the Court of Appeal.

She retired from the Supreme Court on 25 February 2010. She served as an Assistant Crown Solicitor from 1984 to 1988, heading the Policy and Law Reform Unit. From 1988 to 1994 she held the positions of Senior Assistant Crown Solicitor and Senior Assistant Crown Counsel.

In 1994 Wheeler was a part-time Judicial Registrar of the Industrial Relations Court of Australia. She took silk in 1994, becoming the first woman in Western Australia to be appointed as a Queen's Counsel. She sat as a Commissioner in the District and Supreme Courts of Western Australia in 1995 and 1996 and was appointed to the bench on 30 October 1996, becoming the first female Justice of the Supreme Court of Western Australia.

In 2005 Justice Wheeler was made a judge in the Supreme Court's Appellate Court.

Outside law, Wheeler was Pro-Chancellor of the University of Western Australia from 2001 to 2005. She was made an Officer of the Order of Australia in the 2013 Australia Day Honours.


Mrs Nanette Williams

Nanette Williams is the Chief Executive Officer of the Pilbara Community Legal Service and shows an exceptional commitment and dedication to the health, safety and wellbeing of the communities in the Pilbara.

Nanette has been part of the Karratha community for the last 32 years and continues to play a role in its development.

Her achievements include Introduced numerous services – mammography, employment and disability services introduction. Established the Pilbara Social Justice Council. Served as a Councillor. Established the Karratha Community Theatre. Represented the Pilbara on the WA Homelessness Council. A long-term member of Soroptimist. She is a longstanding member of Soroptimist International and has turned the Pilbara Community Legal Service into a one-stop shop in areas of legal, financial counselling, domestic violence support and tenancy support.


ROLL OF HONOUR - Margaret Hubery

The late Margaret Hubery was a forward thinking individual who was a groundbreaker with strong commitment and dedication to the aged care and health sectors.

Margaret was on the Southern Cross Care Board from 1985 to 2005 and was it’s first female member. She was Chairman of the Board from 1997 to 1999.

Margaret’s significant contribution was recognised with the naming of the Margaret Hubery House residential care facility and retirement complex in Shelley in 2000.

During her career she also held the high profile role of Director of Nursing at Royal Perth Hospital during which time she also served as Acting CEO.

She was the first female President of Silver Chain’s Board of Management; Vice President of St Anne’s Hospital; a member of the Divisional Council of Red Cross, President of the Friends of Royal Perth Hospital and Chairperson for the Committee for the Aged Sisters Margaret was recognised for her service to nursing and the community in 1993 receiving the honour of Member of the Order of Australia.


ROLL OF HONOUR - Isabelle Lake

As we saw earlier, the life of Isabelle Electra Lake was not long in duration but significant in terms of her personal impact.

Isabelle Electra Lake was born as Nicholas and spent the first 18 years of her life in an unresolved situation. With the support of friends and family she sought resolution of her gender status, which led to her transgender confirmation in 2009.

Following this Isabelle transitioned with complete support from her extended family, her friends and the Freedom Centre.

She later developed an aggressive form of Leukemia that she and her family fought with vigour.

In 2010 she resumed studies at UWA, studying Microbiology, Immunology and History with a passion and intellect that hadn’t sparked in her prior life.

Despite the incredible challenges she had already faced in her young life, it was during this time that Isabelle became an enthusiastic and effective voluntary worker with a range of organisations including the Freedom Centre, the WA Gender Project, Slut Walk Perth and the Equal Opportunity Commission.

However in November 2011 the Leukemia returned and despite another hard fight she succumbed on 28 February 2012. She was passionate, not bitter, in her response to life and very driven to help those impacted by life’s challenges who were not treated fairly. Her star burnt briefly but brightly.

The Equal Opportunity Commission of Western Australia, in partnership with the University of Western Australia, honour Belle’s work and achievements of Ms through the Isabelle Lake Memorial Lecture and the Fund established in her name to assist transgender people is the only one of it’s kind in the world.


ROLL OF HONOUR - Nancy Stewart

The daughter of a school Principal, Nancy Stewart was born in Claremont, in 1919. She and her family moved around the state during her childhood and she trained to be a schoolteacher.

While teaching she attended the University of Western Australia and completed a joint major in English literature and psychology in 1940.

During World War Two, the Commonwealth Employment Service was established to place people in the most appropriate jobs.

Children aged fourteen were tested to assess their capabilities. With her qualifications in psychology Stewart was employed by the West Australian Education Department to help with the testing and was to deal with 'problem children' and provide what was called 'guidance'.

She was then appointed to the Welfare Department, South Australia in 1945, where she went on to become their first full-time psychologist. When the Child Guidance Clinic opened in 1950 she returned to Western Australia where she was appointed the state's first psychologist.

The following year she travelled to London and gained employment as a psychotherapist. While there Stewart studied with one of the founders of child psychoanalysis, Anna Freud and gained a certificate after the course which would be considered as comparable to a Master of Clinical Psychology of University College, London, today.

Throughout her career Ms Stewart was committed to increasing the professional recognition of psychologists. In 1945 she was a foundation member of the Australian branch of the British Psychological Society, which became the Australian Psychological Society in 1966. She was the honorary secretary and chair of the Society at various times and was later made a Fellow. From 1957 to 1979 she was a lecturer in clinical psychology at the University of Western Australia. She died in 1997.


ROLL OF HONOUR - June Williams

All her life, June Williams worked to promote equity in the community, in her many roles: as an activist in the Women’s Electoral Lobby, as a teacher, and conciliator in the NSW Anti-discrimination board.

Her future direction was firmly established in 1972, when she became a co-convener of the Women’s Electoral Lobby.

The Women's Electoral Lobby intervened in the Commonwealth bank officers' case in which the union opposed the employment of part-time workers in banks.

Although pro-rata pay and equal conditions were not achieved, the right to work part-time was.

On her return to Perth, June became the inaugural WA Equal opportunity Commissioner and remained in the position for 17 years.

She consulted widely in the community, with industry and government to ensure that the Act was supported and understood. She was also committed to developing a sound body of case law in the Equal Opportunity Tribunal and rarely forwarded a matter to the Tribunal that did not succeed.

Article Index
Inductees 2015
Her Excellency the Honourable Kerry Sanderson AO,Governor of Western Australia
Dr Sue Boyd
Mrs Doolann-Leisha Eatts
Ms Tracey Horton
Mrs Pat Morris AM
Professor Cheryl Praeger AM
Honourable Christine Ann Wheeler AO, QC
Mrs Nanette Williams
Roll of Honour - Margaret Hubery
Roll of Honour - Isabelle Lake
Roll of Honour - Nancy Stewart
Roll of Honour - June Williams
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