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Westpac 200 Women exhibition and book featuring Ann Sherry

25 October 2017

From the moment Westpac opened its doors strong women have been at the core of what we do. Women such as Mary Reibey, an emancipated convict and successful business woman, she was Westpac’s first landlord when the bank opened its doors in 1817.

Now in our 201st year we’re proud to continue our support of our 200 Women, storytelling project, designed to provoke thought about diversity and equality through the stories of 200 women from around the world.

New Zealand-based publishers Geoff Blackwell and Ruth Hobday travelled the world collecting the stories for 200 Women: Who will change the way you see the world (Chronicle Books, 2017). The women’s portraits were captured by celebrated photographer Kieran E. Scott.

The project has been accompanied by an interactive exhibit, which first showed at Sydney Opera House Forecourt last year, and podcasts to which you can listen.

All the stories in the book belong to the women themselves. Some are confronting, many uplifting, all authentic. And, while we accept that not everyone will agree with all views, we are proud to begin a conversation about a range of issues that are important to women and men alike.

Pictured here: Executive Chairman Carnival Cruises and former CEO Westpac New Zealand Ann Sherry. An edited extract from her 200 Women story follows.

Ann Sherry Ok

Ann Sherry AO was born in Gympie in Queensland, Australia. Sherry has headed Australia’s Office of the Status of Women and represented Australia at United Nations fora on human rights and women’s rights. She became chief executive officer of Carnival Australia in 2007, having previously been chief executive officer of Westpac New Zealand and the Bank of Melbourne. In 2004, Sherry was awarded an Order of Australia for services to the community through the promotion of corporate management practices and policies that embrace gender equity, social justice, and work and family partnerships. In 2015, Sherry was named Australian Financial Review Westpac’s Women of Influence overall winner.

Q. What really matters to you?

“It matters to me that I do what I do with purpose. I’m always looking for opportunities to create change. Almost every day I see something and think, ‘We could do that better.’ That matters to me, because I couldn’t think of anything worse than getting to the end of my life, only to look back and go, ‘All those opportunities I had and I did nothing.’ So I’m determined that – when I get there – I’ll look back and feel that, even if I’ve not done everything the way I may have wanted, I gave it all a good crack.”


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