Gunnedah Times journalist Marie Hobson will today be announced as the Local Woman of the Year for the Tamworth Electorate.

The NSW Local Women of the Year are chosen by members of parliament and are recognised for their contribution to their local community.

Member for Tamworth Kevin Anderson will make the presentation at the Gunnedah Water Tower Museum this morning where Marie has dedicated much of her time over many years.

He described Marie as an inspiration to others.

“A charitable and unselfish person, Marie has always been interested in the lives of people, always putting others ahead of herself,” Mr Anderson said.

Having served as president and secretary of Gunnedah & District Historical Society, Marie has a great interest in local history and genealogy. She became one of the archivists for St Joseph’s Parish during the church centenary in 2018. She salutes the women who have gone before her, those who researched and gathered material, meticulously stored it in folders as it made the role of those coming behind so much easier.

Alongside her late husband Glen, she has a long history with the Gunnedah Swimming Club and has been a life member for many years. She taught countless boys and girls for more than 20 years always encouraging them to believe “that they could do anything”. Today she writes publicity for the club and believes every child deserves recognition of their efforts.

Swimming club head coach John Hickey said Marie’s commitment to the organisation was of the highest order.

“They could not have chosen a better person,” he said.

“Marie’s contribution to the club is one of great positivity.

“Her drive to recognise the achievements of our swimmers, to see they get every accolade they deserve, is admirable.

“She has done nothing but support everything we do.”

Over the years Marie served on the boards of St Xavier’s Primary School and St Mary’s College, the Catholic Ball and Deb of the Year Ball run by the swimming club.

Marie is an active member of VIEW who was drawn to this organisation as it was a voice for women that has expanded as times changed.

More recently, she has been an integral part of the Gunnedah Times team since its first publication in November 2020.

Marie says her life has been surrounded by wonderful women, her mother, her grandmother and aunts who “wrapped us in their love”. Through her school years she was taught by the Sisters of Mercy who gave a broad Catholic education to seek full potential. 

Mr Anderson said the award was just recognition for a woman passionate about her Gunnedah community.

“Marie is an outstanding community advocate who has spent a lifetime caring for her community,” he said.

“With Gunnedah so close to her heart, Marie has always had a keen interest in seeing her friends and neighbours do well and for her community to thrive.

“Marie’s dedication to Gunnedah embodies the spirit of the Local Woman of the Year Award and I can think of no more deserving recipient of this award.”

The Local Woman of the Year award forms part of a state-wide presentation to recognise and celebrate the outstanding contribution made by women across NSW.

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