The theme of International Women’s Day, 2022, is #BreakTheBias.
Denice Hamid, a 360 member who regularly uses the facilities at Victoria Park Pool is another example of how women can break the bias in the community regardless of their age or ability.
When I was younger, the gym was not for women, I never went there. In my eighties I exercise more than I ever did in my life and I am a women in extreme sports. And there is no bias against me now.
Denice celebrates her 80th birthday this month and she inspires many people to never give up.
When she was younger she never went to the gym because it was portrayed as a place for men and body builders only.
After her divorce, Denice gained weight which lead to some severe health issues. This was the catalyst for making changes to her lifestyle. She started with group exercises and attended a women's gym, then she moved further and enrolled herself in a personal training course at TAFE. She then started her own business with a goal to get more people active, and became a bungee jumping lover at the age of 72.
Watch the full video interview with Denice talking about her love of extreme sports.
The day provides us with an opportunity to shine a light on the contribution and impact that women make on professional life specifically, and society generally, and to heighten awareness of the male-oriented bias, whether intentional or not, that continues to affect the society in which we live and work.
Victoria Goodwin Barlow, Regional Manager - City of Sydney Contract.
Victoria is a leader that sets an example in the industry. We asked her about her professional experience and whether deliberate or unconscious, bias makes it difficult for women to move ahead and what is her message for future women leaders?
My starting point in life is a love of people, a strong sense of fairness and a belief that talent exists in all of us - irrespective of who we are.
I’ve been driven by those things and I think they have contributed to me being respected and supported in taking on leadership positions.
I am aware also that bias does exist and so I think I have an innate resilience (inherited from the amazing role model that is my Mum) and have developed a determination to succeed, to never give up despite the obstacles and it is the strength of my values that has enabled me to overcome the challenges I have faced.
I am also appreciative that the positive attitude of men towards women leaders is important in a quest for equity, diversity, inclusion and judgment without bias.