07 June 2022

Ms TRISH DOYLE (Blue Mountains) (18:21): I warmly congratulate Maree Cairns on receiving the Blue Mountains Senior Citizen of the Year award. I hold Maree in the highest regard, as an educator of excellence, a mentor, a supporter of community organisations, a tireless volunteer and an advocate for change in the field of gender equality. She has had a lifetime of service in public schools throughout New South Wales, making a significant contribution to the lives of families in the Hazelbrook community over many years as a classroom teacher and assistant principal.

Maree has always been a catalyst for change. She played a critical role in bringing the Zonta club to the Blue Mountains. Maree and the Zonta team helped assemble birthing kits for women in developing countries and funded cards with valuable phone numbers to help women in domestic violence situations. She is a founding member of the Blue Mountains and Penrith Districts Women in Educational Leadership network, organising many events to support women in and aspiring to leadership in education. Since retiring, Maree has immersed herself in many community organisations, including the National Trust and Friends of Norman Lindsay Gallery. I thank Maree for all her amazing work. This recognition, which I proudly supported, is well deserved.