Outstanding Queensland women working in the resource industry took centre stage today on International Women’s Day (8 March) as $20,000 in Queensland Government funding was announced for a mentoring program to support younger women to follow in their footsteps.
Minister for Women Di Farmer announced the new mentoring program for girls in the resource sector at the 14th Annual Resources Awards for Women at an International Women’s Day breakfast today.
Presented by BHP Billiton in partnership with the Queensland Resources Council (QRC) and Women in Mining and Resources Queensland (WIMARQ), the awards recognise outstanding Queensland women working in the resource sector.
“Queensland is home to so many outstanding women, and today’s awards underline that,” she said.
“Congratulations to all the finalists, and especially the winners.
“I am so pleased that some of these awards especially recognise the achievements and potential of some young Queensland women – and that’s why we’re funding this mentoring program in the resources sector.
“When our outstanding women nurture and mentor the next generation, we are making sure that we will continue to support the progress of outstanding women into the future.”
Award winners were:
- Exceptional Woman in Queensland Resources – Jennifer Purdie
- Excellence in Diversity Programs and Performance – South32
- Exceptional Young Woman in Queensland Resources – Alicia Hurkmans
- Exceptional Trade/Technician/Operator – Alanna Dennien Kommatsu
- Gender Diversity Champion – Rob Jackson
- Exceptional Woman in Exploration – Sue Slater, and
- Exceptional Female Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy (QMEA) Student – Madison Curran.
Ms Farmer also acknowledged the Queensland Resource Council for its actions to progress gender equality in the resources sector.
“What better time and place than on International Women’s Day, during Queensland Women’s Week and at this Awards ceremony, to announce our financial support of the inaugural Girls Mentoring Program.
“I am delighted $20,000 has been allocated to the Queensland Resources Council and Women in Mining and Resources Queensland to establish this program – the first of its kind.”
Ms Farmer said 20 girls from 60 Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy schools across the state had been selected to take part in the girls mentoring program.
“I’m so pleased to see girls selected from across the length and breadth of Queensland,” she said.
Chief Executive of the QRC Ian Macfarlane said the QRC acknowledged the long-standing support of the Queensland Government for their education and gender diversity programs.
“The Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy and the mentoring program have had proven success in encouraging young women into resources-related careers and moving the dial on the retention of women in the industry,” he said.
“The Queensland resources sector offers rewarding career paths for women in all parts of our state, and we look forward to continuing to work with the Queensland Government to attract new resources projects and create new jobs.”
The Queensland Government also supports the QRC and WIMARQ women’s mentoring program with more than 200 Queensland women having successfully completed it.
“The women’s mentoring program has had a very positive impact on their careers with many participants attributing their advancement to the excellent mentoring they received from their resources sector mentors, both male and female,” Ms Farmer said.
“In an industry that has long been male-dominated, I am thrilled to hear of their successes.”
Ms Farmer said $15,000 had been provided to the QRC to assist five women working in the Queensland resource sector to attend the Awards ceremony today and the following Inspire! professional development workshops.
The women include mechanical fitter and turner Tegan Fatnowna; administration supervisor Julie-Anne Bridge; metallurgist Roxanne O’Donnell; train driver Jody Sainsbury and rail logistics leader Evelyn Cornell Mackay.
Minister for Child Safety, Youth and Women and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence
The Honourable Di Farmer