We were back bigger and better than ever this year in our hunt for Australia’s Proudest Woman in Trades. You may have seen our winner and runners up, but now it is time to really get to know them.
Finalist – EJ Zyla
EJ is a painter and mural artist who loves that she is able to push the boundaries in her position. She is a strong believer that the more women that have roles in trades, the more opportunity this creates for future generations to see themselves in these positions. For EJ, she loves that she can be a strong female role model!
Give her a follow on Instagram to check out all of her incredible works of art.
Finalist – Shae
Shae is a fourth year electrical apprentice who is so grateful that she gets to be an inspiration to other women thinking of entering trades, as well as the LGBTQ+ members of the industry.
Her role is constantly challenging but as such, is incredibly rewarding. For Shae, being a woman in trades is all about breaking down stereotypes. Now that is an attitude we can get behind!
Finalist – Jane Low
Jane is a sous chef who has worked and honed her skills all over the world, with a passion for using sustainable ingredients.
She works in a heavily male-dominated industry and believes in recognising and celebrating the talents of women in the kitchen, especially. Jane knows that incredible things can be achieved when women lift each other up!
Finalist – Sarah Madigan
Sarah is a live audio engineer and is part of the only 5% in her industry that are women. Despite this, she relishes in the hands-on and challenging nature of her work.
She had to carver her own path when she began 13 years and hopes that her potion will increase female representation and inspire other women to take the first step.
Finalist – Amy Jane
As a woodworker, Amy loves the entire process of taking something unwanted, and creating something beautiful.
She teaches women’s woodworking classes to equip women with a new skill and the ability to find joy in the job. Her goal is to ensure that women know it is a career option, as well as showing women that it is never too late to make the jump and do work that brings you genuine happiness.
Check out Amy’s Instagram channel to take a peek at her work.
Our winner: Madi Moriarty
Madi is an apprentice carpenter who, after seeing some incredible women in cabinet making factory, took the leap! She absolutely adores her job and envisions a world where women in trades aren’t an anomaly, that they are just accepted as equal contributors. She is incredibly passionate about spreading the word about women in trades in every way she can. By normalising her role, Madi hopes she can make the path for other women in trades just that little bit easier.
“When I entered the Australia’s Proudest Woman in Trades competition, I really wanted to show my passion for recognising the talents of women in trades,” she says. “I want the next generation of trades people to see these talents as equal to those of men, so women don’t have to constantly fight for their job. When I saw that I had won, it only made me more excited to keep empowering women in trades.”
Like most women in trades, Madi has had challenges being taken seriously in her role. “My biggest challenge at the moment is turning up to a client’s house to do work for them and getting questions like, “Are you sure you can work on the roof?” “Can my husband help you?” In some cases, clients will call my boss and express that they don’t want a female working for them. I can’t remember the last time I went a whole day without hearing one of these things. It’s frustrating and repetitive but I’m encouraged when I see a client change their assumptions once I’ve completed the work with them.”
As far as her presence on Instagram goes, Madi wants to use her platform to share her experience and normalise woman on the tools. “I hope through Instagram, women can feel comfortable talking to me about their trade and asking for advice,” she tells us.
Speaking of advice, Madi has some for other women interested in getting into trades. “Just start! Be aware that there are challenges, but they make the job so much more rewarding. You may be doubted sometimes, but when you excel and love your job, you’re already a step ahead of most people!”
You heard it here first, dive right in and get paid to do a job you love – you can’t ask for much more than that!
This competition has been an amazing way to showcase the achievements of woman in trades paving the way for future generations. We can’t wait to do it all again next year and meet even more proud tradies!