Kate Bisshop-Witting | Alison Booth | Valerie Braithwaite | Dorothy Broom | Carole Brown | Val Brown | Kylie Catchpole | Hyaeweol Choi | Mary Kilcline Cody | Marianne van Galen Dickie | Gaye Doolan | Cressida Fforde | Nadia Frankham | Debjani Ganguly | Shirley Gregor | Judy Hodgins | Tamara Jacka | Lena Karmel | Lorrae Van Kerkhoff | Lisa Kewley | Jacqueline Lo | Kamalini Lokuge | Isabel McBryde | Heather McEwan | Elizabeth Minchin | Pam Morrison | Lyn North | Molly O’Brien | Helen O'Neill | Robyn Petch | Kate Reynolds | Marian Sawer | Marion Stanton | Cecily Stewart | Sue Stocklmayer | Kelly Strzepek | Sylvie Thiebaux | Emmeline Taylor | Mandy Thomas | Margaret Thornton | Iwu Dwisetyani Utomo | Ranka Videnovic | Helena Zobec


Kate Bisshop-Witting, Senior School Administrator, School of History and School of Philosophy, Research School of Social Sciences, ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences

Nominated by Angela Woollacott, Manning Clark Professor of History, Research School of Social Sciences, ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences; Louise Knox, Research Management Coordinator, ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences.

Angela Woollacott nominates Dr Kate Bisshop-Witting who is the founding Senior School Administrator for the joint School of History and School of Philosophy in the Research School of Social Sciences, in the ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences. In this role Kate has put together and manages a very efficient team who run these two internationally-ranked Schools. Angela worked closely with Kate during her term as Head of the School of History and says that ‘Kate brings a brilliant mix of efficiency, strategy, diplomacy and humour to her work. She juggles the endless demands on her with foresight, skill and energy, and is the backbone of both Schools, covering all aspects of their work from their undergraduate programs, to their research functions, seminars and visiting fellows.’

Louise Knox also nominates Kate for being instrumental in providing a clear line of communication between the College administration areas and the academics in her School which, says Louise, she does consistently in a friendly yet professional manner. ‘She is highly regarded and highly valued,’ explains Louise.

Alison Booth, Professor of Economics, ANU College of Business and Economics

Nominated by Stephen Green, Marketing Officer, ANU College of Business and Economics

Alison Booth has been a professor of economics at ANU since 2002. Before that, and since, she has contributed to her broader disciplinary field as President of the European Association of Labour Economists (EALE) for three years from 2006 to 2008, serving on the Council of the European Society of Population Economics and on the Executive Committee of the Royal Economic Society, and as editor-in-chief of the journal Labour Economics from 1999 to 2004. She has published widely, particularly in her specialist field of labour economics and behavioural economics. But of just as much interest to Stephen Green who nominated her is Alison’s publishing success in fiction. Her first novel, Stillwater Creek was enthusiastically received and highly commended in the ACT Book of the Year in 2011. Her second novel, The Indigo Sky was published in 2011, and a third, A Distant Land, completing a trilogy set partly in the fictional South Coast town of Jingera, is due to be published in June this year.

Professor Alison Booth at ANU Research

Professor Valerie Braithwaithe, Regulatory Institutions Network (RegNet)

Nominated by Kyla Tienhaara, Research Fellow, Regulatory Institutions Network (RegNet); Kathryn Henne, Research Fellow, Regulatory Institutions Network (RegNet)

Professor Valerie Braithwaite has worked at the ANU as a teacher, mentor, leader and world-class researcher for over 30 years. She has a passionate sense of the value of policy-oriented law and society research on regulation and restorative justice and has been instrumental in the creation of an inclusive community of scholars working on these issues at the Regulatory Institutions Network (RegNet). Her work is truly interdisciplinary, path-breaking and inspirational to her colleagues. But Kyla Tienhaara and Kathryn Henne do not nominateher solely for her intellectual contributions to the ANU. Equally important, they tell us, is her compassion and concern for the well-being of her colleagues. ‘As foreigners,’ say Kyla and Kathryn, ‘we are particularly well-placed to attest to her ability to make everyone feel welcome and at home in an institution that can often be confusing and difficult for newcomers to navigate.’

Kyla and Kathryn nominate Professor Briathwaite in particular for her support and mentorship of early career researchers like themselves, but she is equally inspirational to ANU PhD students who comment on the supportive working environment that she builds for students and staff and her unwavering generosity, kindness, and ongoing encouragement which is a particular source of strength and inspiration students. Kyla and Kathryn point out that Professor Braithwaite’s commitment to honesty and respect is central to her contributions to the ANU—both in terms of her research and service. They find her particularly inspirational, however, because ‘as women in the academy, we know that it is easy to succumb to the normative—and masculine—behaviors fostered by the competitive environments of research and administration. What sets Val apart is her successful career and her caring and compassionate personality.’

Valerie Braithwaithe at ANU Research

Dorothy Broom, AM, Emerita Professor, National Centre for Epidemiology & Population Health, ANU College of Medicine, Biology & Environment

Nominated by Margo Saunders, Public Health Policy Researcher/Writer

Professor Broom is a health sociologist who has made major contributions, over more than three decades, to our analysis and understanding of issues around the gender dimension of population health. Unlike many whose work on ‘gender’ tends to focus on one particular gender, Professor Broom has taken a wider view which means that her work is of relevance and value not only to those with an interest in women’s health, but also in men’s health and in the ways that gender influences health in terms of prevention and primary care. Her research and thoughtful analysis in relation to some of society’s most important health and gender issues - including obesity, preventive health, chronic conditions, and parental employment and children’s health - have made her a respected authority on health inequalities and the social dimensions of health and illness. From the edited book, Unfinished business : social justice for women in Australia, published in 1984, to her more recent work on obesity and the drivers and barriers for health and wellbeing, Professor Broom has been an inspiration to women in public health. When Margo Saunders first met her in 1982, she was struck not only by Professor Broom’s sharp mind, but by her sense of humour and unfailingly friendly and outgoing nature. ‘She is one of those hard-working, bright and successful people who is also able to avoid being too serious for too much of the time,’ says Margo, ‘ How many academic editors would title the collected proceedings of a women’s health research workshop, From Hysteria to Hormones?’

Carole Brown, Manager, Centre for Career Development, Human Resources Division

Nominated by Kate Hulm and Kyanne Smith, Senior Consultants, Centre for Career Development, Human Resources Division

Kate Hulm nominates her manager at the Centre for Career Development, Carole Brown, because she is ‘a passionate and transformational leader with great vision’. Kate explains: ‘As Manager of the Centre for Career Development and National President of the CDAA, she has worked tirelessly to advance the practice of career development for ANU, Australia and the world. As a supervisor, she genuinely cares for her people, their development and wellbeing. I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with Carole and have grown immensely as a result of her wisdom and guidance.’

Kyanne Smith also nominates Carole for similar reasons: ‘In addition to her substantial professional expertise, Carole is a great leader of people – both at ANU and in the career development profession. Her vision for career development at ANU and in Australia is ambitious and inspiring. She leads with courage, kindness and a very strong sense of purpose. Carole is quite simply the best manager I have had and I have experienced great professional and personal development with her guidance. She supports people to flourish and acknowledges others generously and often. It is a privilege to work with her – she is an excellent role model and mentor to many.’

Ron Watts works with Carol in his role as Director of Human Resources. He describes her as an extremely capable and very well liked manager and leader. As Ron explains: ‘Her team recorded the highest staff survey satisfaction results for the Division as she actively practices what she preaches in terms of leadership. She has led the team in the development of new leadership and supervisor programs and a wide range of other programs for academic and professional staff that are well supported and valued by participants and the Vice-Chancellor. She has also been successful in working with her team to win an external consultancy to design a leadership program for the Australian Public Service Commission to undertake leadership development for the Senior Executive of the Australian Public Service based on programs developed for the ANU, which is testimony to the world class quality of the material which has been developed. It is a pleasure and privilege to work with her and to be challenged by her creative and innovative ideas and approaches and to see the success of her approach with her team.’

Carole Brown at ANU Human Resources

Val Brown, Visiting Fellow and Director, Local Sustainability Project, Fenner School of Environment and Society, ANU College of Medicine, Biology and Environment

Nominated by Nicholas Mortimer, ARC Laureate administrator, ANU College of Asia and the Pacific

Nicholas Mortimer very much wanted to nominate Emeritus Professor Val Brown. Having read much of Val's foundational work in human ecology during the course of his undergraduate degree Nicholas recently had the pleasure of having Val give a guest lecture. ‘I found Val a most inspiring person,’ he says, ‘whose physical presence and persona was matched by the esteem and respect given to her by all who know her. She is generous with her time and knowledge and a strong advocate on issues of sustainability. At an age when most others would be slowing down Val is a passionate, energetic and engaged leader in her field at well deserves any accolades or recognition that comes her way.’

Val Brown at the Fenner School of Environment and Society

Hyaeweol Choi, Foundation Professor of Korean Studies; Director, Korea Institute; School of Culture, History and Language

Nominated by Kim Rubenstein, Director of the Centre for International and Public law, Convenor of the ANU Gender Institute

Hyaelweol Choi is the Foundation Professor of Korean Studies here at the ANU and Director of the Korea Institute. She has been nominated by Kim Rubenstein who is excited to see a young woman leading a research centre at the ANU, and encouraged by the university’s commitment to Australia’s position in Asia in having a young Asian woman in such a vital role. Kim is particularly inspired by Hyaelweol herself who ‘exudes energy and enthusiasm’.

Hyaeweol Choi at ANU Research

Kylie Catchpole, Research Fellow, Centre for Sustainable Energy Systems, ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science

Nominated by Professor Andrew Blakers, Director, Centre for Sustainable Energy Systems (CSES), ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science

Dr Kylie Catchpole currently leads the nanostructures for photovoltaics research group in the Centre for Sustainable Energy Systems (CSES). Kylie won a University Medal for her undergraduate physics degree from ANU and earned her PhD from ANU as well. Before taking up her appointment in CSES she was a post-doctoral fellow at the University of New South Wales and the FOM Institute for Atomic and Molecular Physics in Amsterdam. From her physics background Kylie has brought her understanding of plasmonics to the study of solar cells and her work is creating more efficient cells that are cheaper to produce so that solar power can be more competitive with fossil fuels. In 2010 Kylie's work on nanophotonic light trapping was listed as one of MIT Technology Review's '10 most important emerging technologies'. Kylie is also an episode winner on ABC television's 'New Inventors' and her work has been featured in the news sections of Science magazine and The Economist.

Kylie Catchpole at ANU Research

Mary Kilcline Cody, Lecturer, School of Culture, History and Language Convenor, Master of Asia-Pacific Studies Core Courses, Convenor, Vice Chancellor's Creating Knowledge Course

Nominated by John Monfries, Visiting Fellow, ANU College of Asia and the Pacific

John Monfries nominates his colleague Dr Mary Kilcline Cody who, he tells us ‘is liked and respected by all here at the College of Asia and the Pacific. She was described by the previous head of CAP, in a formal reference for her, as a “delightful person”, a widely shared judgement’. Mary has recently been awarded her PhD which appeared in an article by Ian Warden in the Canberra Times on 12 July 2012 as ‘Empire-shocking killing inspires thesis’. Quite apart from her PhD studies, Mary has been trusted with running one of the Vice-Chancellor's special courses, ‘Creating Knowledge’, which she is now doing for the second time. Last year, when she took it up for the first time, the course had languished, and she had the difficult task of resurrecting it which, John says, she did with much skill and dedication. She is also assisting with the important Master of Asia-Pacific Studies program, also for the second time.

John says that Mary ‘is well-known as a sympathetic but firm teacher and supervisor of students, and is an excellent networker’. He finds particularly inspiring the festschrift she edited (with Jan van der Putten of University of Singapore) in honour of her now deceased supervisor, the late Dr Ian Proudfoot. Titled Lost times and untold tales from the Malay world (NUS Press, Singapore, 2009), it involved a great deal of marshalling, coordinating and editing of a string of papers from a roll-call of international experts on Malaya. Mary and Jan managed to keep the project secret from Ian Proudfoot himself (who was already known to be ill) almost until the actual book launch. ‘This exercise,’ says John, ‘was both a significant landmark in Malay scholarship and a tribute of inspiring kindness to a well-liked but retiring and modest man.’

Mary Kilcline Cody at ANU Research

Marianne Van Galen Dickie, Migration Law Program Sub-Dean, ANU College of Law

Nominated by Ilona Van Galen, Marketing & Communications, ANU College of Law

Ilona van Galen describes Marianne Dickie as the ‘highly inspirational lynchpin’ of the ANU Migration Law program, which runs the Graduate Certificate in Australian Migration Law & Practice and a number of short courses associated with migration law. Marianne’s personal drive and expertise is responsible for the dedication and commitment of 33 practitioner teachers who work off-campus and teach on-line. These practitioners are some of Australia's best qualified migration lawyers and migration agents. Marianne has been able to persuade and motivate these practitioners to add online teaching to their already busy professional lifestyles, ensuring that the ANU is able to deliver programs of the highest value for students. She brings this same drive to her small team working within the Legal Workshop at the College of Law. In addition, Marianne established and still runs an outreach program for migrants in need of assistance they cannot find or afford elsewhere. The service now operates on campus at the ANU (Westland House) one day a week, and the pro-bono migration advice offered by Marianne and other members of her staff fills an important gap in legal services provision in Canberra. As a fierce advocate for refugee and asylum seeker human rights she makes submissions to senate enquiries, guest lectures to teenagers in high schools, publishes opinion pieces and works tirelessly for the rights of her pro-bono clients. She has personally sponsored and supported a number of refugee families and individuals, as they adjust to life in Australia. Last year Marianne was recognised with an ANU International Women's Day Award, an ANU Media Award for her contribution to public debate, and she was an ACT finalist in the Australia Day awards. All this whilst completing her Master of Higher Education at ANU.

Read more about Marianne’s advocacy work

Read Marianne’s profile of the Australian of the Year 2012 website

Gaye Doolan, Indigenous Project Officer, School of General Practice, Rural & Indigenous Health, ANU Medical School

Nominated by Ian Martin, Senior Consultant, Indigenous Employment, Diversity & Inclusion Unit

Ian Martin nominates Gaye Doolan, the Indigenous Project Officer in the School of General Practice, Rural and Indigenous Health at the ANU Medical School and an active member of the Indigenous Health Interest Group. Gaye has made significant contributions to devising and implementing strategies and programs to increase the participation rate of Indigenous students, particularly in the Medical School. In 2011 she was recognised for her work with Indigenous Australians, and was awarded the Vice Chancellor's Award for Reconciliation.

A key feature of these programs is the personal connections that Gaye, herself an Indigenous woman from Tasmania, makes with the students and their families. She maintains regular contact with prospective students, offering important personal support and encouragement. Gaye has particular skills not only in engaging with young Indigenous students and their families, but also working with and mentoring, medical students with an interest in Indigenous health. This has been critical to the successful recruitment of the medical school’s two Indigenous students, and the increasing numbers of prospective applicants, and those who go on to apply. Gaye has also been involved in research and evaluation projects and has made a number of formal presentations at national conferences, on behalf of the ANU Medical School. At the General Practice Education and training conference in 2010, she presented two papers for the ANU one in conjunction with Ms Julie Tongs, CEO of Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health Service.

Gaye plays a key role in supporting and encouraging students and staff in mutual understanding in building and promoting reconciliation.

Gaye Doolan at ANU Medical School

Cressida Fforde, Deputy Director, National Centre for Indigenous Studies

Nominated by Kerrie Doyle, PhD candidate

Kerrie Doyle nominated Dr Cressida Fforde the new Director of NCIS who has recently moved to the ANU from AIATSIS and, according to Kerrie, ‘has picked up the reigns of PhD supervisor in record time!’ But there is more to Cressida than that. As Kerrie puts it: ‘She is encouraging without bullying. She demonstrates integrity in all her work – if she doesn’t know an answer to your question, then she will work to find out for you. She has an ability to see a big panoramic picture, and works to introduce you to bigger ideas. She believes in you. She is brilliant as well! Her contributions to students will make a considerable difference not only in our lives, but in our communities as well.’

Dr Cressida Fforde at AIATSIS

Nadia Frankham, Director, Acton Early Childhood Centre

Nominated by Johanna Hood, Postdoctoral Fellow, Australian Centre on China in the World, ANU College of Asia and the Pacific; Sarah Belling, Work Environment Group, ANU Human Resources Division and President, AECC Parent Committee; Shameem Black, Research Fellow, School of Cultural Inquiry, ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences

Nadia Frankham is the skilled and experienced director of the Acton Early Childhood Centre (AECC) who guides her team in the provision of care to children whose mums or dads working at the ANU and surrounding areas. The AECC provides such exceptional care it has a waiting list of approximately 350 children. Nominator Johanna Hood feels extremely fortunate to have her child under Nadia’s leadership. ‘Nadia is an incredible person,’ explains Johanna. ‘She is compassionate, inclusive and caring, and commands the respect of parents and children alike. She leads her team by example, is firm yet gentle and patient with all the children, and listens to and does her best to address the wishes of parents. I always am learning from Nadia. The tasks that take me minutes to achieve with my child, she accomplishes in seconds. Without the level of care my child receives under her directorship, I simply could not function as a full time researcher at the ANU.’ As Johanna points out the importance of childcare to the achievements we make as students, academics and professional staff is often unacknowledged, yet Nadia’s contributions to the ANU community ‘are immense and occur on a daily basis’.

Sarah Belling tells us that Nadia has supported countless woman on campus over the years by being firstly a pre-school teacher and running the preschool program at AECC and now in her capacity as director. ‘While this is a hidden role,’ says Sarah, ‘it is one that is critical to the function of campus life and yet totally overlooked by decision makers and those in authority on campus. Women working in an academic or professional environment need to feel their children are in a safe, caring environment to achieve their best. Nadia has offered that reassurance over her many years working on campus. She is a conscientious person who consistently helps families by working with them to achieve outcomes in the best interest of the family and child. Nadia always expects the best from the staff of the Centre and aims to achieve the highest standards possible. The job of Director of a childcare centre is one of the hardest I can think of in terms of expectations of others on the position. Nadia maintains utmost professionalism while dealing diplomatically with the high expectations of parents and regulators, and the realities of ensuring the welfare and education of the children who are the future of Australia and the ANU.’

Shameem Black echoes these sentiments. ‘Nadia,’ she says, ‘is full of warmth and compassion, someone who makes AECC seem like an extension of a home. I'm very grateful to her and all the other educators at AECC for creating a nurturing environment at the university that allows children to thrive.’

Debjani Ganguly, Associate Professor, English; Head, Humanities Research Centre, Research School of the Humanities & Arts, ANU College of the Arts & Social Sciences

Nominated by Elen Turner, PhD candidate

Elen nominated Dr Debjani Ganguly as a personal inspiration for a number of reasons. ‘Firstly,’ she says, ‘as an academic Debjani has achieved a lot in a relatively short career, having written and edited books, articles and journals, as well as heading the Humanities Research Centre. She is a very encouraging and supportive PhD supervisor, as well as being appropriately critical when necessary to help me achieve my best work. She has combined these academic successes with raising her children, and coming to Australia to do her PhD from India when her children were young.’ This is a key point for Elen. ‘As a young woman,’ she explains, ‘it would be easy to fall into the trap of believing that one must make a choice between career and family. I would not like to presume that such a balance is easy (or even always a balance!), but to me Debjani demonstrates that success is possible on multiple fronts!’

Dr Debjani Ganguly at ANU Research

Shirley Gregor, Professor of Information Systems, ANU College of Business and Economics

Nominated by Stephen Green, Marketing Officer, ANU College of Business and Economics; Lynette Johns-Boast, Lecturer, Research School of Computer Science, ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science

Stephen Green tells us that Shirley Gregor was made an Officer of the Order of Australia in the Queen’s Birthday Honour’s list in June 2005 for services as an educator and researcher in the field of information systems and in the development of applications for electronic commerce in the agribusiness sector. She had already spent a number of years in the computing industry in Australia and the United Kingdom before beginning an academic career. At the ANU Shirley is the Foundation Professor of Information Systems and a Director of the National Centre for Information Systems Research where her work regularly attracts funding for large applied research projects. Outside ANU Shirley is a Fellow of both the Australian Computer Society and the Association for Information Systems; she was inaugural president of the Australasian Association of Information Systems; Region 3 (Asia/Pacific) Councillor for the Association of Information Systems; a senior editor for MIS Quarterly; and she is now editor-in-chief of the Journal of the Association for Information Systems.

Professor Shirley Gregor at ANU Research

Judy Hodgins, Proprietor, The Gods @ HB

Nominated by Ella Hodgins, Research assistant, Fenner School of Environment & Society, ANU College of Medicine, Biology and Environmentt; John Nguyen, former employee, The Gods

Judy opened The Gods @ HB (the cafe at the Hedley Bull building) about five years ago and has run it since. Before this time, she helped to run The Gods Cafe in Union Court. She has successfully built up a cafe that serves as a professional and social meeting spot for academics, administrative staff and students from the surrounding buildings. The success of her business is in part due to the produce that she sells, but is strongly based on Judy's positive interaction with her customers. As Ella says, ‘She knows almost all of her customers names and remembers not only what they order but what they have been working on or doing in their free time.’ Judy has been through some difficult personal times over the last couple years, but this hasn't affected the kindness and interest she shows towards other people. ‘I have been told countless times by customers of Judy's,’ says Ella, ‘about how much she brightens their day with her infectious energy. In fact, she has been thanked in the foreword of many PhD theses for helping people to get through the hard times! She truly contributes to the university atmosphere and for this reason she is an inspiring woman of ANU.’

Former employee John Nguyen also nominates Judy Hodgins for teaching him to see the brighter side of life, to always keep his chin up and to enjoy and appreciate what you have and to not dwell on the burdens that appear to be holding you back. ‘Just being in her presence is enough to make your day,’ says John. John now lives in Melbourne but when he is in Canberra always drops by The God’s to see Judy. ‘I've never seen so much courage and strength in a person in my life,’ he explains. ‘Judy’s optimism and caring, gentle nature is indestructible. She is an inspiration to me and many others. Her soul is infectious. A little smile goes a long, long way.’

Tamara Jacka, Senior Fellow, Department of Political & Social Change, School of International, Political & Strategic Studies, ANU College of Asia and the Pacific

Nominated by Johanna Hood, Postdoctoral Fellow, Australian Centre on China in the World; Edward Aspinall, Head of Department; Mei-Ling Ellerman, PhD Candidate; Kumiko Kawashima, Postdoctoral Researcher; Department of Political and Social Change School of International, Political & Strategic Studies, ANU College of Asia and the Pacific.

Dr Tamara Jacka is nominated by four of her colleagues. Johanna Hood is inspired by Tamara for many reasons, from her academic and personal achievements and commitment to social justice, to her generosity and kindness. ‘As an anthropologist working on Chinese gender issues,’ says Johanna, ‘Tamara is exceptionally knowledgeable, well networked, and commands respect in her field in Australia, China and abroad. Tamara is the recipient of a Francis K Hsu prize for the best book in East Asian Anthropology for her 2006 work on rural women in urban China, and has graduated a very successful group of PhD and Honors students who now work internationally, for the government, and within academia. As an educator and supervisor, she challenges her students to achieve their full potential, while manages to provide delicate balance of constructive comments, guidance, and encouragement. As a colleague and mentor she is generous with her resources, supportive, principled and fair. Although she is exceptionally busy, Tamara makes herself available and always provides well-grounded guidance and feedback for applications and grants. She never forgets to pass on relevant opportunities and jobs to her students and the early-career researchers she knows. Tamara’s contributions to building communities and including women within them are outstanding and deserving of recognition.’

Edward Aspinall describes Tamara as ‘a remarkable colleague, an exemplary researcher and a wonderful mentor for younger researchers and PhD students.’ He particularly comments on ‘her strong commitment to an ethical standpoint that underpins not only her own research on gender politics and women in China, but which is also obvious in all her dealings with staff, students and others at the university.’ Another of Tamara’s qualities, says Edward, ‘is her commitment to grounded ethnographic research that aims to understand the lives and viewpoints of ordinary people yet which does not shy away from tackling big conceptual and theoretical questions.’

PhD candidate Mei-Ling Ellerman feels that Dr Jacka has been an ideal supervisor, mentor, model and supporter: ‘I have made considerable strides in my academic work as a direct result of her mentorship, where she both supports and challenges me to consistently improve.’

Kumiko Kawashima has known Tamara as both supervisor and colleague and says ‘she is a fantastic role model for me, both professionally and personally. ‘Much of my intellectual and professional growth over the last several years owes to her mentorship.’ Kumiko has glimpsed how Tamara manages her career, family life and friendships sincerely and warmly without shying away from disagreements or difficult discussions. ‘All these professional and personal qualities’, says Kumiko, ‘make her a genuinely inspiring woman, and I believe her presence contributes greatly to the institutional culture of ANU.’

Dr Tamara Jacka at ANU Research

Lena Karmel, former President of ANU Club for Women

Nominated by Julie Gorrell, Senior Projects Manager (Administration & Planning), Office of the Vice-Chancellor

Julie Gorrell tells us that Lena Karmel has had a long association with Canberra and the ANU. Lena spent her childhood in Canberra, going to Telopa School, and later working in the Commonwealth Public Service, including a period as a court reporter at the Tokyo War Crimes Tribunal. In 1946, Lena married the economist Peter Karmel, whom she had met in Canberra.

After a great number of moves around Australia with Peter, Lena and their six children moved back to Canberra in the early 1980s when Peter took up his appointment of Vice-Chancellor. ‘Lena’s support for this office cannot be underestimated’, says Julie. During this appointment and in the period Peter was Chair of the National Institute of the Arts, she played an incredibly important role. Lena’s generosity touched many lives in Canberra and the ANU as many ANU staff and students were welcomed to their home, extending not only great kindness but demonstrating knowledgeable interest in their fields of work. For many years, Lena was President of the ANU Club for Women, which was established to give support to the families of staff, and visitors coming to the University.

Lena’s support for the arts has been enduring. She has built a remarkable private collection consisting of works by Australia’s established and emerging artists and, together with Peter, established scholarships that have supported many former and future students in the Schools of Art and Music at the ANU.

Woven through Lena’s life has been a strong commitment to helping young people and those less advantaged. To acknowledge this lifelong support of others, the ANU has named its newest student accommodation building, the ‘Lena Karmel Lodge’.

Lorrae Van Kerkhoff, Fenner School of Environment and Society, ANU College of Medicine, Biology and Environment

Nominated by Hedda Ransan-Cooper, PhD candidate, School of Sociology, ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences

Dr Lorrae Van Kerkhoff has inspired Hedda Ransan-Cooper, and others she knows for many reasons. ‘Intellectually,’ says Hedda, ‘Dr Van Kerkhoff is original, courageous and open. As my supervisor, I find every meeting with her incredibly stimulating as well as, in a practical sense, very useful. I also think the way she approaches her teaching and research reflects an integrity of spirit that I find truly inspiring. In the field of environmental studies, the material can sometimes be dispiriting but Lorrae manages to always bring in a message of hope and ideas for positive ways forward.

Lorrae Van Kerkhoff at ANU Research

Lisa Kewley, Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics, ANU College of Physical & Mathematical Science

Nominated by Sarah Biddle and Rebecca Davies, Undergraduate students, ANU College of Physical & Mathematical Sciences

Professor Lisa Kewley has a wealth of knowledge in her areas of astrophysics. Just as importantly for the student who nominates her, Lisa ‘treats everyone with respect and kindness and is a pleasure to work with.’ Sarah did an undergraduate research project with Lisa in semester one, 2012, and ‘she was very encouraging, and understanding. Lisa showed me all the amazing things I can do in my future studies which was very motivating. She is also taking me to Hawaii for three weeks this July to write up a paper on my project!’ Lisa does all this with a young family and goes home every lunchtime to breastfeed her daughter. ‘I often tell my friends and family,’ says Sarah, ‘how greatly inspiring she is to me as a young woman interested in academia and starting a family, and I think Lisa is the perfect role model.’

Professor Lisa Kewley at ANU Reseach

Jacqueline Lo, Director, ANU Centre for European Studies, ANU College of Arts & Social Sciences

Nominated by Melissa Jogie, PhD candidate, ANU Centre for European Studies, ANU College of Arts & Social Sciences

Professor Lo has made outstanding contributions to the field of humanities as an academic, both in terms of her outstanding publications and her teaching reputation. Her leadership skills at the European Centre are exemplary by comparison. ‘However,’ says Melissa, ‘I nominate her for this award because she is an outstanding role model for all women at the ANU. Despite her accomplished achievements, she is humble and makes the time to assist her students and fellow staff members. She encourages others to seek after their goals and to be brave and confident about the future. She never complains and always forges a way forward without fret and always, always, with a smile on her face.’

Professor Jacqueline Lo at ANU Research

Kamalini Lokuge, Research Fellow, ANU College of Medicine, Biology and Environment

Nominated by Sarah Geddes, Menzies Centre for Health Policy, Crawford School of Public Policy, College of Asia and Pacific

Dr Kamalini Lokuge is an ANU Research Fellow who additionally works as a doctor and medical epidemiologist for international health organisations including Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders), the World Health Organisation, and the International Committee of the Red Cross. She was awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia for her work in 2010. From 2010 to 2012, Kamalini was a member of the Médecins Sans Frontières-Australia Board of Directors.

Nominator Sarah Geddes tells us that Dr Lokuge focuses on conducting implementation research in complex settings in partnership with local communities and health workers. She aims to improve the health outcomes of vulnerable populations, including those affected by conflict, communicable diseases and natural disasters, through practice-driven research and local capacity building. As this nomination is put forward Kamalini is in Uganda investigating an Ebola outbreak. She is passionate about the health and wellbeing of vulnerable populations and makes many personal sacrifices to serve the global community. She is admired by her family, friends and colleagues for the work she does. Sarah says she is just one of many who admire Dr Lokuge and ‘feel lucky to know and learn from her’.

Kamalini Lokuge at ANU Research

Isabel McBryde, Emerita Professor

Nominated by Helen Cooke

Helen Cooke nominated Professor Isabel McBryde who has been an inspiration and mentor to many archaeologists, especially women. Helen gave her reasons by quoting from the Australian Archaeological Association’s biographical article on Isabel McBryde: ‘Few people have created such an enduring legacy for Australian archaeology. She has touched the minds, hearts and actions of virtually the entire Australian archaeological community. She is celebrated by students, Indigenous communities, colleagues and friends.’

Heather McEwan, Marketing Manager, ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science

Nomination by Inge Saris, Manager, Diversity and Workforce Planning

Heather McEwan worked in a succession of advocacy roles – in consumer affairs, for people living with HIV/AIDS and for international agricultural research – before taking up her current position as marketing manager in the College of Engineering and Computer Science. Here she is not only an advocate for the academics in disseminating their research but also an advocate for women in these fields. She has been responsible for outreach programs that encourage girls to think about doing engineering or computing; she has created events and workshops that support women in their disciplines; she has been involved in development of the college’s Affirmative Action Plan for academic women; and is a member of the University Access and Equity Committee and a member of the Diversity Contact Network. Inge Saris, Manager of Diversity and Workforce Planning, who nominates Heather describes her as “a very outspoken supporter for women within the university and specifically in her college. She is a strong advocate for inclusion and has a strong social justice streak. She goes against the stream in her quest for inclusion and fair treatment of women.”

Elizabeth Minchin, Professor of Classics and Ancient History, School of Cultural Inquiry, ANU College of Arts & Social Sciences

Nominated by Fiona Sweet Formiatti, MPhil candidate; Classics and Ancient History Program Students' Society (President Jessie-Kate Watson and Secretary Jonathon Zaspasnik)

Fiona Sweet Formiatti says that Professor Minchin exemplifies the talented professional woman who has met the challenge of striking work-life balance. Married with two children, her determination to secure an academic career in Classics, where very few openings are available, was shown by the 18 years she spent as a part-time lecturer –not out of choice – before securing her first fixed-term, full-time appointment in 1991. She hasn't looked back since. Fiona would also like to point out that Professor Minchin is not only an inspirational female role model to her peers but also to the student population. ‘This is illustrated,’ says Fiona, ‘by the fact that the ANU Classical Students' Society would like to be recorded as a co-nominator. All the Society's committee members are under-graduate students, many of whom are female but Professor Minchin also offers the male students a very positive role model. She combines excellence in achievement in all the facets of academia with that very rare quality that truly inspires those around her.’

Professor Elizabeth Minchin at ANU Research

Pam Morrison, Head of School and Professor of Marketing, School of Management, Marketing and International Business, ANU College of Business and Economics

Nominated by Songting Dong, Research Fellow and Senior Lecturer in Marketing, and Vinh N Lu, Research Fellow and Lecturer in International Business, ANU College of Business and Economics

Her nominators describe Professor Pam Morrison as an inspiration to everyone in the School for her research, education, leadership and active lifestyle. Her research because of its quantity, impact (including the international recognition it has gained) and ability to attract major funding including numerous ARC Discovery and Linkage grants. Her education because of the innovative methods she brings to teaching for which she was awarded an ANU Top Supervisor Award in 2010 and a further nomination for 2011. Her leadership because of her commitment to supporting all her staff in success in research and teaching - under her watch there has been a significant increase in the number of quality research publications and ARC grant applications and staff have been successful in winning teaching awards and education grants. And her active lifestyle because Pam manages to find time for cycling, abseiling, rock climbing, scuba diving, and karate (black belt).’ In short’, say her nominators, Pam is ‘a true role model’.

Professor Pam Morrison at ANU Research

Lyn North, Functions Manager & Catering, University House

Nominated by Karen Downing, Project Manager, ANU Inspiring Women

In the many conversations that Karen Downing has already had across campus about this project one name kept coming up: Lyn North, the functions and catering manager at University House. For more than 20 years Lyn North has ensured that the warmth and hospitality of University House helps to sustain the intellectual conversation and exchange of ideas that ANU is renowned for. Moreover, Lyn extends this welcome to government, school, commercial and charitable organisations as well as Canberra citizens who find University House the perfect place to celebrate significant occasions. In 2006, Lyn received a Vice Chancellor’s Award for Innovation & Excellence in Service Quality in recognition of the tremendous work that she does.

Molly O’Brien, Associate Professor of Law; Director of Teaching and Learning, ANU College of Law

Nominated by Helen McGowan, PhD candidate; Dr Heather Roberts, Lecturer, ANU College of Law; Melanie Poole, Parliamentary Advocacy Coordinator, CARE Australia

Helen McGowan met Ms Molly O’Brien soon after she had arrived in Canberra to begin her doctorate. Molly had organised at ‘dialogue retreat’ at Kioloa where faculty members and undergraduate law students could reflect on the student experience in the College of Law. ‘We ate well,’ says Helen, ‘and had structured and informal conversations, learning more about each other, generating enthusiasm and collegiality.’ Helen was taken with campfire singing and star watching (the first experience of an ‘Ozzie’ campfire for many students) and particularly by Molly’s wide repertoire of Mexican songs and American folk music. Molly was ‘unafraid and generous’. This experience has fed into Molly’s research and she has published and speaks on what has become a call to action to change the way faculty engage with the student cohort – change that Molly is passionate about. ‘Molly speaks from the heart,’ says Helen, ‘she has integrity and authority.’

Ms Molly O’Brien at ANU Research

Helen O'Neill, Professor, Head of Immunology and Stem Cell Laboratory, ANU College of Medicine, Biology and Environment

Nominated by Pravin Periasamy, Post-Doctoral Fellow; Sawang Petvises, Ying Ying Hey, Vinson Tran and Jang Ji, PhD scholars; Hong Kiat Lim, Honours Student; Immunology and Stem cell Laboratory, ANU College of Medicine, Biology and Environment

Professor Helen O’Neill is the lab leader of the Immunology and Stem Cell Laboratory. She has led a distinguished career as a leading scientist in the field of dendritic cell biology. She has published numerous papers in internationally recognised journals. Of the numerous students she has supervised, most have gone on to be researchers, clearly demonstrating her ability to instil passion for science and research to her students. These former students are in close contact with her and regularly collaborate on research. In addition to being an excellent supervisor who spends time mentoring and assisting her research students, Professor O'Neill is also a well-liked undergraduate teacher. Her course in molecular immunology is very popular and an important course in a medical science degree. It addresses current issues and problems facing society in health and disease and Professor O’Neill keeps its content relevant though her own research and by regularly inviting top researchers from the John Curtin School of Medical Research and Canberra Hospital to give student seminars.

Professor O’Neill has been nominated by numerous members of her lab. Pravin Periasamy, told us that Helen ‘has been nothing short of remarkable’. Sawang Petvises nominated her because ‘she is the best in PhD supervision’, Vinson Tran added that ‘someone like her who is hard working, enthusiastic and humble is very rare to come by’ and Hong Kiat Lim said ‘her enthusiasm in research and her constant motivation inspire students like me to work hard’. Jing Ji said that ‘As a woman myself I am also inspired by her ability to balance her great research career with her family life’ and Ying Ying Hey concluded that Helen ‘inspires me to be the best I can and to chase after dreams I have’.

Professor Helen O'Neill at ANU Research

Robyn Petch, Area Administrator, Research School of Earth Sciences, ANU College of Physical & Mathematical Science

Nominated by Aditya Chopra, PhD candidate, Earth Chemistry, Research School of Earth Sciences, ANU College of Physical & Mathematical Science

Robyn Petch is well known in the Research School of Earth Sciences for her dedication to support researchers and students. She always has a smile and has an exceptional ability to brighten up the atmosphere within the group. She is always willing to assist staff and students through administrative matters and has supported students in particular through the hard days and their personal difficulties. ‘She would be amongst the best,’ says PhD candidate Aditya Chopra, ‘when it comes to organiaing meetings and conferences.’ Robyn is an integral part of the school's scientific endeavour as without her efforts and skill, administrative and purchase processes could easily take twice as long. ‘Perhaps it is the fact that she shares our passion for science and learning,’ explains Aditya, ‘that encourages her to perform superbly in her work environment, often beyond the call of duty. She champions the work ethic of doing the best each day and is an excellent demonstration of an inspiring woman at ANU.’

Kate Reynolds, Australian Research Fellow and Associate Professor, Department of Psychology, ANU College of Medicine, Biology and Environment

Nominated by Luisa Batalha, Centre for Deliberative Democracy & Global Governance, ANU College of Arts & Social Sciences

Luisa has nominated Kate Reynolds because she is ‘a very talented researcher, inspiring, quick and generous and she is not afraid of putting her nose out there in a male dominated environment. It has made all the difference for me to come to the ANU and work with someone that I admire and respect very much.’

Dr Kate Reynold’s profile page at the Department of Psychology

Marian Sawer, Emeritus Professor, ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences

Nominated by Penelope Marshall, PhD Candidate, Politics and International Relations, ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences; Merrindahl Andrew, Research Associate, School of Politics and International; Meredith Hinchliffe, Member, Women’s Electoral Lobby. -->Nominated by Merrindahl Andrew, Research Associate, School of Politics and International; Meredith Hinchliffe, Member, Women’s Electoral Lobby; Penelope Marshall, PhD Candidate, Politics and International Relations, ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences.

Emeritus Professor Marian Sawer’s nominators admire her long term commitment to promoting gender equality both in the university and outside. Marian has combined a high level of research achievement, culminating in her role as head of the Political Science Program in the Research School of Social Sciences, with continuing engagement with equity issues on the national and international stage. She has brought this commitment to her roles as president of the Australian Political Studies Association, Vice-President of the International Political Science Association and as Director of the Democratic Audit of Australia.

They also admire Marian’s pioneering work in equal opportunity programs beginning In the 1980s first at the ANU and subsequently at the Department of Foreign Affairs. Her international work has included promoting good practice through the United Nations, for example as rapporteur for Expert Group Meetings on women’s policy machinery. She has always believed in putting theory into practice and like her friend, the late Clare Burton, with whom she appeared at parliamentary inquiries, did this through active participation in the Women’s Electoral Lobby.

Now an Emeritus Professor at the ANU, Marian continues to supervise graduate students and to mentor early career researchers, with many of whom she has co-published. The issues that led her to co-found the women’s caucus of the Australian Political Studies Association in 1979 continue to receive her attention. In 2012 she co-authored with younger scholars gender monitoring reports on women in political science at both the national and international levels as well as providing oversight for a Women’s Electoral Lobby audit on the quality of gender assessment in the ACT Administration.

Marian has published numerous books examining a variety of topics. She views everything through a prism of how it will affect women. She is supportive of women, no matter what endeavours they are following, and is particularly supportive of women in the social sciences. In January 1994, Marian was made an Officer of the Order of Australia for service to women and to political science.

Emeritus Professor Marian Sawer at ANU Research

Marion Stanton, Head of Hall, Bruce Hall

Nominated by Hsei-Di Law, Technical Officer, John Curtin School of Medical Research, ANU College of Medicine, Biology and Environment

Hsei-Di Law nominates Marion Stanton who ‘watches over more than 300 residents with kindness, warmth and wisdom. Her job is a Herculean one, navigating young adult issues and managing various “quarter-life crises” on a day-to-day basis. Even the best and brightest of us lose our way and I have watched Marion help so many residents find their feet again and put them back on track. She does this by providing good coaching and adult guidance, but mostly by choosing to believe in the best of us. Marion is an inspiration to me because in her heart, she has room for 300.’

Cecily Stewart, Director, Marketing and Communications, Crawford School of Public Policy, ANU College of Asia and Pacific

Nominated by Jude Blacklock, Senior Development Officer, Crawford School of Public Policy; Professor Tom Kompas, Crawford School of Public Policy, ANU College of Asia and Pacific

Jude Blacklook nominates Cecily Stewart as ‘an inspirational leader and colleague’. In Jude’s words Cecily ‘employs a consultative, creative leadership style, peppered with good humour, empathy and humility. Cecily models a high standard of professionalism and like any great leader, would never ask anyone to do anything she isn’t prepared to do herself. Her endless enthusiasm for the task at hand is infectious. Cecily has a real gift for bringing out the best in people. I have witnessed Cecily encourage and support subordinates to develop their skills and self-confidence, which has enabled them to move onto more challenging roles, even if that often meant she lost them from her own team.’

Professor Tom Kompas also nominates Cecily for her dedication, innovation and the inspirational role she carries out within Crawford School of Public Policy. ‘Cecily,’ says Tom, ‘is the cornerstone of the public profile of School and she brings a mix of strategy, efficiency, skill and enthusiasm which was recently highlighted in the success and delivery of Policy Public: Ideas, Insights and Initiatives an exceptional collaboration between the ANU, Australian Public Service and other leading institutions both domestically and internationally.’ Tom tells us that Cecily manages an efficient and dynamic team and her commitment to equity, transparency and productivity is an asset to School. He says that Cecily ‘epitomizes complete professionalism, her ability to explore creative solutions while still being grounded and realistic has been critical in shaping a successful public profile. She is an engaged, talented and exceptional woman who’s efforts allow for policy translation and impact. We are very fortunate to have such a dynamic woman in our team.’

Cecily Stewart at ANU Crawford School of Public Policy

Sue Stocklmayer, Professor of Science Communication, ANU College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences

Nominated by Lindy Orthia, Lecturer in Science Communication, Centre for Public Awareness of Science, ANU College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences

Professor Sue Stocklmayer is the first professor of science communication in Australia, and one of a small select group worldwide. Sue built the Centre for Public Awareness of Science (CPAS) from a graduate certificate course into an empire of undergraduate, postgraduate and outreach programs, international collaborations, and a steadily building stream of research publications led by her example. Despite her responsibilities as Centre Director, Sue still does face to face teaching, still supervises student research projects and is still the driving force behind the Centre’s hands-on international training and outreach programs. In 2009 a group of science centre staff from South Africa and Lesotho visited CPAS for some postgraduate training. Sue and Professor Mike Gore oversaw their entire training program themselves, to the glowing praise of all participants. That training program will have a lasting legacy in South Africa and Lesotho as those science centre staff go on to build up their own science centre programs. Sue has contributed to science communication knowledge in so many other areas as well, Lindy Orthia tells us, but particularly relevant for this nomination, she says, is her little known work to promote gender inclusiveness in science textbook illustrations and examples. ‘She has championed this cause time and again,’ says Lindy, ‘despite facing sexism and hostility from students and staff members who don't see the problem.’ Lindy says there are few people who can claim to have made their mark on the world ‘while also routinely making time to hear the ideas and concerns of first year students and junior staff members’. Sue’s formal achievements have been recognised by the award of Member of the Order of Australia and a Vice Chancellor's Award for Career Achievement.

Professor Sue Stocklmayer at ANU Research

Kelly Strzepek, PhD candidate, Research School of Earth Sciences, ANU College of Physical & Mathematical Science

Nominated by Lyndsay Dean, Research Assistant, Research School of Earth Sciences, ANU College of Physical & Mathematical Science

Lyndsay Dean nominates Kelly Strzepek for the following reasons: ‘Kelly is a PhD candidate at RSES and not only is she performing cutting-edge scientific research of her own, she’s also curating a scientific blog, presenting at international conferences, helping keep the radiocarbon dating lab running smoothly, AND being the best new bride ever. But beyond that, Kelly is always willing to help people with their own research and writing, and provides unsurpassed academic help and guidance. Telling you exactly what you need to hear, no holds barred, she was instrumental during my Honours year and is a guiding light in my professional development. Kelly is a true inspiration to all women in science, and shows that spectacular things are possible if you’re dedicated enough (and willing to have many balls in the air!).’

Kelly Strzepek’s profile page

Sylvie Thiebaux, Professor, Research School of Computer Science, ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science

Nominated by Professor John Hosking, Dean, ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science

Professor Thiebaux is the first woman professor in the ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science. She is part of the artificial intelligence group which intersects NICTA's research in Machine Learning and Optimisation. During 2009-2011, Professor Thiebaux was the Director of NICTA’s Canberra Laboratory, which comprises 120 staff and students working in key disciplines of information and communication technologies.

Professor Thiebaux received her PhD in computer science from the University of Rennes in 1995 and has held continuing research appointments with the French Institut de Recherche en Informatique et Automatique (INRIA) and CSIRO before joining ANU in 2001. Her research interests are in artificial intelligence, in particular automated planning, diagnosis, combinatorial optimisation, search, and reasoning under uncertainty. Her current research focuses on developing planning and diagnosis techniques that can handle larger and more complex problems featuring uncertainty, time, mixed discrete-continuous dynamics, and coordination among multiple entities. This research has many applications and Professor Thiebaux is currently investigating its use in transforming the way power systems are planned and operated. She is currently the president of the board of directors of the International Conference on Automated Planning and Scheduling (ICAPS), and has held other positions of responsibility in several leading journals and conferences in artificial intelligence.

Professor Thiebaux has two school-aged children and balances her very full home life with what her nominator John Hosking calls "an exemplary research career" which includes leading a group of 10 academic staff and PhD students and actively mentoring many others. This makes her not just admirable but inspirational.

Professor Sylvie Thiebaux at ANU Research

Emmeline Taylor, School of Sociology, ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences

Nominated by Hedda Ransan-Cooper, PhD candidate, School of Sociology, ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences

Hedda Ransan-Cooper nominates Dr Emmeline Taylor because she is inspiring on a number of fronts. ‘To me,’ says Hedda, ‘she’s an example of an early-career female academic who is passionate about her work, and is always ready to share that enthusiasm with students and colleagues alike. One example is that she recently volunteered to spend a weekend with PhD students and shared her experiences openly, without being overbearing or creating the impression that her approach was the best one. Her warmth, and approachability as well as her obvious commitment to her students and her work, encourages me to believe that academia can be a positive career path!’

Emmeline Taylor at ANU Research

Mandy Thomas, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research & Research Training)

Nominated by John Ballard, Visiting Fellow, Research Student Development Centre and Dr Daniela Rubatto, Associate Professor and QEII Fellow, Research School of Earth Sciences, ANU College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences; Johanna Hood, Postdoctoral Fellow, Australian Centre on China in the World, ANU College of Asia and the Pacific.

John Ballard nominated Mandy Thomas because she has been ‘quietly instrumental in advising Margaret Jolly and Hilary Charlesworth on getting the Gender Institute approved and funded’ and because she has been behind many of the other gender initiatives of recent years. ‘I suspect,’ says John, ‘that her influence within Chancellery has been vital not only in encouraging women-oriented programs but in forestalling or reshaping other programs that have been blindly misogynist.’ Daniela Rubatto added her reasons for nominating Mandy, for ‘remaining a supportive and gentle person in a world dominated by strong personalities; for her competent approach to University administration; for always being available to discuss and explain, no matter how big or small the issue; for her commitment to and affirmative action for gender balance in this institution.’

Professor Mandy Thomas at About ANU

Margaret Thornton, Professor of Law, ANU College of Law

Nominated by Melanie Poole, Parliamentary Advocacy Coordinator, CARE Australia

Melanie Poole first came across Margaret Thornton’s research during a Feminist Legal Theory course. Her work had a deep impact and Melanie felt very privileged to go on to have Margaret as her law honours supervisor and subsequently as a friend, role model and mentor. ‘Anyone who has read Margaret’s work,’ says Melanie, ‘particularly her deeply compelling critique of the neoliberalisation of legal education, will know that Margaret is an academic giant. I particularly admire her writing style – she uses powerful, engaging language and avoids esoteric jargon, thus making complicated arguments and concepts accessible to a wide audience. When completing my thesis for Margaret I was consistently challenged and stimulated by her questions and as a result my honours experience was a very enriching learning experience.’

But it is not just Margaret’s intellect that Melanie admires. First and foremost she admires her courage. ‘Margaret’ says Melanie, ‘is not afraid to speak the truth as she sees it.’ She brings to mind Susan B Anthony’s remark that ‘Cautious, careful people, always casting about to preserve their reputation and social standing, never can bring about a reform. Those who are really in earnest must be willing to be anything or nothing in the world's estimation.’ Melanie feels that in today’s ‘publish or perish’ environment, it is rare to come across an academic with as much integrity and courage as Margaret has. ‘There’s no ego about her,’ explains Melanie, ‘and, while she is certainly not an aggressive person (in fact she is the opposite, very gentle and warm), Margaret is also not someone who lets fear or excessive caution silence her when standing up for what she believes.’

Melanie has always found Margaret to be warm, kind and encouraging. ‘She expects you to try hard and she challenges you, but she always has time for you and she always makes you feel like you have something worth saying – no matter how much you’ve still got to learn!’

Margaret Thornton at ANU Research

Iwu Dwisetyani Utomo, Fellow, ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences

Nominated by Lynda K Wardhani, PhD candidate, Australian Demographic and Social Research Institute, ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences; John Monfries, Visiting Fellow, ANU College of Asia and the Pacific.

Dr Iwu Dwisetyani Utomo is a Fellow at the Australian Demographic and Social Research Institute (ADSRI) and Lynda Wardhani is extremely grateful to have her as her supervisor. Lynda finds Iwu inspirational in the work that she does including leading several projects related to demography and reproductive health in South East Asia. As a gender specialist, she has worked with organisations such as the Asian Development Bank, Canadian International Development Agency, Australian Agency for International Development, Australian Reproductive Health Alliance, Marie Stopes International and Care Timor-Leste. Her publications are internationally recognised and cover issues of gender, reproductive health, sexuality, demography, family planning, maternal and child health, as well as social change. Iwu plays a significant role in developing and sustaining the institutional culture and reputation of the Australian Demographic and Social Research Institute here at the ANU. As a supervisor, says Lynda, Iwu offers continuous motivation and encouragement. She gives guidance and direction and shows thoughtful concern for her students’ self-development – ‘she wants them all to excel and succeed both professionally and personally’. Iwu, notes Lynda, is a particular inspiration to her female students.

Dr Iwu Dwisetyani Utomo at ANU Researchers

Ranka Videnovic, Assistant School Administrator, Research School of Management, ANU College of Business and Economics

Nominated by Vinh N Lu, Research Fellow and Lecturer in International Business, ANU College of Business and Economics

Ranka Videnovic has been with the Research School of Management in the ANU College of Business and Economics since May 2008. She was nominated by Vinh Lu who tells us that Ranka is much loved by students and academics for her professionalism, thoughtfulness, cheerful personality, cooking talent, and above all, her loving and caring nature. When I first started my position in mid-2010, says Vinh, Ranka went beyond her call of duty to help me settle in the work place as well as the new life in Canberra. I have not seen her without a smile, which always brightens anyone’s day. It is very clear that Ranka has tremendous enjoyment from interacting with people whilst successfully attending to and managing a wide variety of student matters. Her people and organisational skills are absolutely amazing.’ Vinh goes on to say that Ranka is also a loving mother of three fast-growing children (aged 16, 14, and 9) and, busy as she is, she is undertaking a Graduate Certificate in Professional Accounting at the University of Canberra. This academic pursuit is a life-long passion that she started more than 16 years ago but was disrupted by the Bosnian war. ‘Ranka,’ says Vinh, ‘is more than inspirational’.

Helena Zobec, Manager, Chifley Library

Nominated by Katrina Marson, honours student, ANU V President, staff member in the office of Alumni and Philanthropy

Katrina Marson nominated Helena Zobec, Manager of the Chifley Library, because ‘Helena works very hard to make the busiest campus library a great place for students to come and study, and also a great place to work for her staff. Always diplomatic and modest, Helena is always available to help students with their queries and gives consideration to all opinions and concerns. She treats her staff with respect and care, also. She is a great inspiration!’


Please note that the members of the Gender Institute Management Committee, women in Chancelry, as well as those on the ANU Inspiring Women Project Committee, who were nominated by their peers were excluded from consideration to be profiled in this project.



Updated:  7 November 2012/Responsible Officer:  Convenor, Gender Institute/Page Contact:  Web manager, Gender Institute