Kathryn Harris IWD2021


Kilmore District Health Board Chair


What is your greatest achievement/highlight/story, something that you are proud of?

I think completing my degree and CPA while raising small kids and establishing a business. People often ask how do I do it but honestly if something is important enough to you personally you’ll find a way to achieve it. The thing I’m most proud of in more recent times is the KHD strategic plan. It’s an amazing document and reflects the hard work and dedication of the entire organisation.


Have you overcome any challenges that you have learnt from?

Juggling family, work and study and now my children are nearly all adults I have to admit I’m not sure I did it particularly well! I have learnt to prioritise and not sweat the little things - a clean house is not the be all and end all for me. Time with my family is more important than cleaning. As long as everyone has clean undies I think we are winning. Being a female tax practitioner in what was, and still is, a very male-dominated industry, has presented some challenges but I think it has meant it’s necessary for women to be better and upskill more which is what I’ve done.


Who are the women who have inspired you in your life and/or career, and why?

My Nan, who although she didn’t work for wages outside the home was involved in multiple different governance organisations including political parties and school councils in a time when women weren’t encouraged to be involved. All while raising 6 children!

My mum who inspired my passion for local health care and who is still nursing at 74!

My daughters as I wanted them to see that you can be whatever you choose, opportunities are there for the taking.


What advice would you give to future women and girls in your industry?

Believe in yourself, we know that girls often lose confidence in their abilities as teens due to societal norms. Look for role models - in accounting and governance there are some fantastic ones. You have to see it to be it - find someone in the industry you admire and ask them for guidance. Most importantly as you achieve your career goals make sure you put a hand down to help the next women up.


If you could meet anyone, living or dead, who would you want to meet, and why?

Ruth Bader Ginsburg as she was such a trailblazer in law and women’s and minorities rights in general.


Who is someone you look up to at KDH and why?

The entire staff, especially over the last 12 months. The work they do is so important to our community. I’m amazed at their resilience and teamwork.


What is a quote or saying that you live by?

If he can, I can.