The Valley’s business women made the pilgrimage to Coffs today to rub shoulders with their sisters to the north at the 2018 International Womens Day breakfast.
The winner of the 2018 Coffs Coast Woman of the Year was also announced today.
Aunty Bea Ballangarry, the well-respected Gumbaynggirr elder and inspirational mentor to women of all ages on the Coffs Coast, is the worthy winner.
Aunty Bea’s work is in the spirit of the International Women’s Day theme for 2018, #Press for Progress.
She is a core founder of the community initiative, WOW Women Of the World, Coffs Harbour and, as a leader, is incredibly generous with sharing and passing on her knowledge to future elders.
She received a plaque, certificate and cash prize of $1000 towards her work with women and girls.
This year there was also a runner-up award, won by Kyla Holley who established the Australian Centre for Eating Disorders (ACFED).
The Centre aims to improve the education for the support of people with eating disorders and obesity, many of whom are women and girls.
The runner-up prize of $250 awarded to Kyla was sponsored by One Agency Coffs Harbour.
The other three finalists were Ellen Slater, Debbie Leaney and Meena Johnson.
International Women’s Day in Coffs Harbour is celebrated each year and this year, the breakfast attracted 330 attendees, including senior students from our local high schools, and a group from the Nambucca Valley Business Women’s Network.
The Zonta Young Women in Public Affairs, and Pat Funnell Award winners addressed the audience.
The Keynote speaker this year was Augusta Supple who spoke of her journey from Coffs Harbour to performance on the international stage, and how the performing arts are contributing to the push back against sexual exploitation of women.