Media Release, 17 September 2014

Ten women playing leading roles in the economic development and social fabric of the Territory were named today as finalists for the 2014 Telstra Business Women’s Awards.

They include Irish-born Sandra Howlin, a project manager with construction engineering company IrwinConsult and local pioneer in the growth of environmentally sustainable design, and Lisa Collis, who is responsible for quality and compliance management at work placement training organisation GTNT (Group Training Northern Territory).

Women leading social change that have been honoured this year include Suzanne Kendrick, who spent three decades in the NT Police Force before moving to head Mission Australia’s community services delivery last year, and former airline executive Jillian Ritherdon who now leads service programs for disadvantaged youth and families as Executive Director of YWCA of Darwin.

The 2014 finalists join a prestigious list of Telstra NT Business Women Award winners, ranging from optometrist Helen Summers and public servants Anne Bradford and Janet Buhagiar, to airport manager Katie Cooper, Save the Children Australia program manager Nancy Jeffrey and seafood business owner Yvonne Bradley.

Young business women recognised this year include PR company manager Natalie Bell, who is also President of Business and Professional Women Darwin, and occupational therapist Shannon Hallatt, who launched OT for Kids NT to provide services to help children with learning disorders.

Other finalists include former Deloitte partner and newly-appointed NT Auditor General Julie Crisp, Pilates trainer and studio owner Katie Crane, beauty therapist Debby Bell, and Cathryn Doney, founder of booking business Darwin Holiday Apartments and cruise company Sail Darwin.

Kate McKenzie, Telstra Chief Operations Officer and Telstra Business Women’s Awards Ambassador said, “The diversity of our 2014 Northern Territory finalists shines a light on Australian business women whose innovations and leadership are changing the industries and communities around them.

“As the longest standing national business awards program for women in Australia, the Awards have uncovered stories of amazing business women at all stages in their careers.

“The 2014 NT finalists join a long list of incredible alumni who have inspired us with their individual achievements, and done so much collectively for the promotion of women in the Australian business world,” she said.

As a partner of the Telstra Business Women’s Awards, Vanessa Nolan-Woods, General Manager of Commonwealth Bank’s Women in Focus network, said: “For 20 years, the Telstra Business Women Awards have provided a high profile platform that celebrates the achievements of successful women. The Awards create positive role models for other aspiring women.
“Women in Focus is proud of our partnership with the Telstra Awards, and the role we have played together to create a supportive network of women to inspire future trailblazers,” she said.
Winners of the 2014 Telstra Northern Territory Business Women’s Awards will be announced on Friday 3 October in Darwin. The Territory winners proceed to the national finals in Melbourne on 26 November.

For finalists across Australia the awards offer a chance to share in $650,000 in cash and prizes.

Finalists for the 2014 Telstra Northern Territory Business Women’s Awards are:

Business Owner Award
Debby Bell Ella Baché Fannie Bay Fannie Bay
Katie Crane Encore Pilates Coconut Grove
Cathryn Doney Darwin Holiday Apartments Darwin City

Private and Corporate Sector Award
Julie Crisp Deloitte Darwin
Sandra Howlin Irwinconsult Pty Ltd Darwin

Community and Government Award
Suzanne Kendrick Mission Australia Palmerston
Jillian Ritherdon YWCA of Darwin Inc. Darwin

Business Innovation Award
Lisa Collis GTNT Darwin
Julie Crisp Deloitte Darwin
Cathryn Doney Darwin Holiday Apartments Darwin
Sandra Howlin Irwinconsult Pty Ltd Darwin
Suzanne Kendrick Mission Australia Palmerston
Jillian Ritherdon YWCA of Darwin Inc. Darwin

Young Business Women’s Award

Natalie Bell Associated Advertising & Darwin
Promotions Pty Ltd
Lisa Collis GTNT Darwin
Shannon Hallatt OT for Kids NT Darwin

More information on the Telstra Business Women’s Awards can be found on the Women's Award Website.