A commitment to advance opportunities for women and a determination to advocate for gender equality has been recognised by Monash Council with Sakshi Thakur winning the Sir John Monash Award for Outstanding Leadership at a glittering event at the Monash Gallery of Art.
Sakshi began volunteering in Monash as a 17-year old-taking on the role of Chair of the Monash Young Persons Reference Group and campaigning on numerous issues affecting young people including homelessness, youth mental health and gender equality. She actively contributed towards Council’s Gender Equity Committee and played a leadership role in our Empowering Women strategy.
Mayor Paul Klisaris said 41 nominations had been received for the annual awards and choosing winners had been a challenging task for the committee but Sakshi’s advocacy and determination had stood out for the judges.
“Sakshi and her fellow nominees are wonderful examples of the extraordinary community spirit that we enjoy in Monash,” Cr Klisaris said.
“We are so fortunate to have the calibre of people that we do in Monash, who so readily and generously give back to the community in many ways whether it’s championing gender equality for women and men, helping those from other cultures to feel at home or championing the rights of all to live in safety and freedom. I am honoured to acknowledge these heroes of our community and be able to thank them for their tireless work.”
The winners and finalists in all eight categories of the awards:
- Multicultural Champion—Shashi Kochhar. High Commendations—Deon Manasis, Xin Jun Shan Chinese Library.
- Active Monash—Phil Cook. High Commendations—Barry McDonald, John Allison.
- Outstanding Advocate of People with Disabilities—Kaye Speed.
- High Commendations—Balmoral Men’s Woodworking Group.
- Sustainability Leadership—Venkata Kalva. High Commendation—Geoff Peterkin.
- Youth Leadership Award—Wesley Chen. High Commendations—Debbie Clark, Rida Khan.
- Volunteer of the Year—Mohamed Mohideen. High Commendation—Norman Hyland, Dr Senake Perera, Wanda Egerton.
- Inspirational Women’s Leadership—Sakshi Thakur. High Commendation—Yohana Jury.
- Positive Ageing Leadership—Zhang Hu. High Commendations—John Jarvis, Liming Cao.
The winner of the Sir John Monash Award for Outstanding Leadership, Sakshi Thakur, was chosen from among the category winners. Each winner will be profiled in the Monash Bulletin newsletter over the coming year, so people can learn more about their special contributions.
Awards recognising members of the local community and honouring Sir John Monash have run in Monash since 1998 when Norm Gibbs won the inaugural Sir John Monash Community Leadership award.