Member for Newcastle, Tim Crakanthorp, has announced Linda Hughes as the 2019 Newcastle Local Woman of the Year.
Linda is dedicated to working towards a socially just and inclusive society where people with disability are included as active and valued citizens. She is an advocate, consultant, board member, mentor, presenter, parent and the co-founder and director of Mind the Gap Disability Matters.
Linda was inspired to establish the not-for- profit group by her son, who himself has a disability, with the vision that each person with a disability should be able to self-direct their support and live their life as they choose. She co-founded the group with Catherin Mahony and they have now assisted several hundred people in the Newcastle and Hunter region to achieve their goals and aspirations.
Linda has made a huge contribution to Newcastle in the disability community. Ms Hughes and Ms Mahony, were also integral in establishing Community Disability Alliance Hunter where she continues on as a member and volunteer peer mentor.
She is a life member of The Institute for Family Advocacy and Leadership Development which is an independent, impartial advocacy organisation that supports families across New South Wales to promote and defend the rights and interest of people with developmental disability. She has also served as a member on Newcastle City Council’s Access Advisory Committee.
In addition to this amazing contribution, she is also an active member of Nobbys Surf Club.
The Woman of the Year Awards showcase inspirational stories of dedication and extraordinary achievement by formally recognising and celebrating the outstanding contributions and achievements of women in NSW. The Awards are run by Women NSW.
“Linda is an inspirational woman who fights for equality and social justice. She goes above and beyond in her pursuit for people with a disability to take their rightful place as active and valued citizens.”
“I am so proud to have Linda as our 2019 Newcastle Local Woman of the Year. “
“Linda embodies the elements of social justice and equality for all. She not only runs a not- for- profit organisation to assist people with disabilities, she then goes on to volunteer more of her time speaking at conferences and contributing to design consultations.”