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Katrina Fanning nominated for ACT Australian of the Year

Women's rugby league pioneer and Canberra Raiders Board member Katrina Fanning has been nominated in the 2020 ACT Australian of the Year awards.

Ms Fanning joins Menslink CEO Martin Fisk among the nominations, with Mr Fisk nominated for his work with Menslink, which the Raiders are proud to be involved with as a charity partner. 

Other awards include ACT Senior Australian of the Year, ACT Young Australian of the Year and ACT Local Hero. The winners will be announced in a ceremony on 28 October 2019 at the National Gallery of Australia.

ACT recipients will then join other state and territory recipients for the national awards ceremony at the National Arboretum on 25 January 2020 when the nation celebrates the 60th anniversary of the awards.

Katrina Fanning
Katrina Fanning

The four nominees for 2020 ACT Australian of the Year are:

Katrina Fanning – a women’s rugby league pioneer for over 25 years. The Wiradjuri woman became only the third woman to be appointed to the Canberra Raiders Board of Directors this year. The 2014 Canberra Woman of the Year has lived and breathed rugby league, and following a successful career as a player, she was appointed as manager of the Indigenous Women’s All-Stars team. She has also been the Chair of the Australian Rugby League Indigenous Council and President of the Australian Women’s Rugby League Associations.

Martin Fisk – the much-loved Canberran, Martin Fisk is the CEO of local organisation Menslink, which offers free counselling, mentoring and advice for young men and their families. In 2012, he designed the award-winning Silence is Deadly campaign, encouraging tens of thousands of young men to seek help during tough times. This year alone, Menslink has helped nearly 1,000 young men, up from around 150 at the beginning of the decade.

Mary Kirk AM – a longstanding and dedicated advocate for women, children and midwifery, Mary Kirk has made a significant impact on maternal health and family support, both locally and internationally. As Director of Nursing and Midwifery and Executive Officer of the Queen Elizabeth II Family Centre from 1997 to 2019, Mary supported the establishment of a Scholarship and Research Fund for staff, partially funded by her board and consulting fees. Earlier this year, she was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

Hugh Mackay AO – a prominent social research pioneer and psychologist, Hugh Mackay produced The Mackay Report for 25 years. A prolific writer, he has published books on social analysis, ethics, social psychology and communications. A believer in the intrinsic goodness of humanity, Hugh is a founding member of the St James Ethics Centre and is currently a patron of the Asylum Seekers Centre.

National Australia Day Council CEO Karlie Brand said the sixteen ACT nominees were leaders in their fields and in the community.

“The 60th anniversary of the Australian of the Year Awards is a particularly special time to be nominated,” Ms Brand said. “The 2020 ACT nominees are influencing our society and communities in many positive ways, focusing attention on those in need and helping to shape a better future for us all.”

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