The search is on again for Coffs Coast Woman of the Year

Women from across the Coffs Coast gather to celebrate the IWD Woman of the Year awards. Photo: Kirsty Fikkers Photography.

NOMINATIONS are now open for the 2024 International Women’s Day (IWD) Coffs Coast Woman of the Year Award to recognise outstanding women in the region who demonstrate innovation, commitment and a significant contribution to empowering members of the community within the local area.

This initiative of the IWD Planning Committee, since 2015, was established to acknowledge the positive contribution of women in the region of the City of Coffs Harbour and Bellingen Shire.

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It aims to recognise nominees who are involved in work of a voluntary, community, business or professional nature, and who, within that arena, display vision and initiative in their role.

The Awards honour a woman who makes a key contribution in enhancing and improving the lives of fellow citizens, promotes their economic, cultural and or social wellbeing and is actively engaged with the local community in either a voluntary, community, business or professional capacity.

Past award winners include Christina Monneron (2015), Charlotte Young (2016), Jane Tavener (2017), Aunty Bea Ballangarry (2018), Shelley Lowe (2019), Lily Isobella (2020), Emma Aspden (2021), Jade Naidu (2022) and Doris Cowan (2023).

In 2018 a runner up Award was introduced, won by Kyla Holley (2018), Kamla Ruthnam-Webb (2019), Auntie Kerrie Burnet (2020), Lisa Nichols and Angelika Aulerich (2021), Jodie Wood (2022) and Yvonne Richards (2023).

The Award will be announced at the IWD Breakfast, now in its 25th year, on Friday March 8 2024.

The three major women’s groups in Coffs Harbour (the Zonta Club of Coffs Harbour Inc., Business and Professional Women (BPW) of Coffs Coast and the Coffs Coast Business Women’s Network Inc. (BWN)) collaborate to organise the IWD Breakfast, to acknowledge the positive contribution of women and girls in the region of the Coffs Coast, and to recognise the winner, and runner up of the Woman of the Year award.

The two Awards consist of an inscribed trophy and publicity for the women and their cause.

The major Award Winner will receive $1500, co-sponsored by The Physio Movement (TPM) and the Hoey Moey.

The Runner Up will receive $1000, sponsored by One Agency Coffs Harbour, contributing to both winners to advance their objectives.

IWD Breakfast Committee Member Cath Fowler told News Of The Area, “Coffs Coast women make an important contribution to our local region whether it be in a volunteer, community, business or professional capacity, so it’s great to be able to continue once again to recognise and shine a spotlight on the wonderful contributions women make to improve the lives of our local community.

“For 2024 nominations, we’ve streamlined the process so you can now submit a nomination electronically, at our new website.”

Nomination Forms are now available at, by email from and via the IWD Coffs Coast Facebook page.

The closing date is December 15 2023.

By Andrew VIVIAN

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