Review of Zonta’s Centennial

Zonta operates in a two year cycle called the biennium.  The 2018-20 biennium is very special as it celebrates the 100th year of the founding of Zonta on 8 November 1919.  In the last six months the Zonta Club of Perth has celebrated the Centennial in many ways including:

  • Our Club Awards Night where Shakila Rathnayake became the inaugural recipient of our Women in Technology Award, Kimberley Wilde received the University Education Award, Taylah Thompson received the Yvonne Burgu Education Award and Paris McNeil received the Young Women in Public Affairs Award;
  • Establishing the Awards Alumnae – with  Gabrielle Walker successfully tracking down many previous awardees;
  • The Awards Night hosted by Perth Northern Suburbs club where Eloise Ireland was awarded the Area 3 Jane M Klausman Women in Business Scholarship and later went on the receive the District 23 level of the award;
  • Calling the Cosmos where Zonta took over the SciTech Planetarium to showcase the inspiring work of women scientists and celebrate 100 years of Zonta – some attending in historical dress. Hosted by former WA Chief Scientist, Professor  Lyn Beazley, members and guests were enthralled with the presentations made by Dr Natasha Hurley-Walker, Dr Katarina Miljkovic and Dr Ellie Sansom;
  • The publication of the Centennial edition of our club’s history that was launched at the Combined Australia New Zealand Zonta Conference in Brisbane by the Zonta International President, Dr Suzanne Von Bassewitz;
  • Our bottle and bars Quiz Night at Next Gen in King’s Park that raised valuable funds and showcased Zonta’s work; 
  • The State Reception at Parliament House, hosted by the Minister for Women’s Interests, Hon Simone McGurk MLA;
  • Our Centennial Night Celebration on which a worldwide Zonta-thon was held to raise funds for Zonta’s International programs;
  • Club President, Carole Theobald’s, radio interview describing the history of our club;
  • Zonta International Director and club member, Judy Gorton’s, opinion piece in the West Australian highlighting Zonta’s Centennial and our work locally, nationally and internationally;
  • The 16 Days of Activism with social media messages and the splash of orange as members walked on the Silent March through Perth’s streets to end violence against women; and
  • The end of year Christmas Party at the President’s home where we brought frying pans and household items for Starting over Support and launched the new Donation Cards in Centennial colours.

Our meetings have included some excellent speakers including Rishelle Hume AM and Anjie Brook (Board member and CEO of the WA Aboriginal Leadership Institute), Kalien Selby (A/CEO of Sci-Tech), Tania Cecconi (Executive Officer, CEOs for Gender Equity), as well as survivors of domestic violence who bravely shared their stories.

We have welcomed our new Centennial members;  Nastasa Kusmuk, Ping Teo, Lan Tran, Sue Parlour and Helene Jaccomard and have more prospective members waiting in the wings.

Our club is proud of all of its members, and especially so of:

  • Judy Gorton who has been travelling the world as a Zonta International Director and reminding us of our international affiliations; and
  • Sandra Burns who became the District 23 Governor Elect at the Brisbane Conference and is currently in Chicago for her Governor’s training.

Members have been enjoying the summer break and the next meeting is on the earlier date of 6 February.  At this meeting members will explore how we will Walk the Talk of Zonta in 2020.




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