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Australia Day Honours – AM for Top Girl Guide

By Bev Jordan

Rosemary Derwin has spent most of her life in the Girl Guides in one way or another. Rosemafy Derrin Headshot Am Girl Guide Australia Day Honours - Am For Top Girl Guide

The Kellyville resident who is currently Chief Commissioner, Girl Guides Australia started her Girl Guiding journey at the age of seven when she joined the Brownies. Her service to youth through Girl Guides and her Community volunteering work has seen her appointed to the Order of Australia.

Her AM was officially announced on Australia Day, just days after she returned from the annual National Australia Girl Guides Jamboree where she spent a week in Ballarat with over a 1000 Girl Guides and nearly 500 volunteer leaders.

She has been Chief Commissioner, Girl Guides Australia since 2018 and was Assistant Chief Commissioner from 2002-2005.  Her involvement on the national executive level of Girl Guides stems from 1995 and followed on from her involvement at a State level.  She was a Brownie at Baulkham Hills and then moved on to be a Girl Guide.

Among other roles in Girl Guiding, she was Leader of Youth at Baulkham Hills Senior Guides, (1982-1990) and then Crestwood Guides District Manager (1995 to 2002).  Her two older sisters were Girl Guides and so were her two daughters.

But it hasn’t only been about Girl Guides.  Rosemary was part of the RFS Communications team for several years, has been the honorary auditor for at Kenthurst RFS and The Hills RFS Communications for several years and has been honorary auditor since 1986, and has been auditor for The Hills Community Medical Equipment Pool since 2010.

Her volunteering has included being on the National Board of the White Ribbon Campaign (2006-2008); Honorary Treasurer, United Nations Development Fund for Women, Australia National Committee (2006-2008), and ten years as a Sunday School teacher at Kellyville Anglican Church. “For me volunteering is at the heart of who I am,” she said.

She and her husband Tony, also a long term volunteer, have always called The Hills their home. They run an accountancy business and are now grandparents to three little boys. She said: “ I was humbled when I received notification of the award. As a Leader in Girl Guiding it is about working as a team. I have worked with many amazing women who have inspired, mentored, supported and encouraged me and I will always be grateful to my amazing mother who shared so much of my Girl Guiding journey, for her example of volunteering and providing the foundation of who I am.

“I have enjoyed so much fun, friendship and adventure in Girl Guides. I have been empowered to discover my potential as a leader and this is exactly the mission of Girl Guides: empowering girls and young women to discover their potential as leaders of their world.”

She celebrated Australia Day at home with family and friends.

Bev Jordan

Bev Jordan studied journalism at Harlow College in the UK.  She achieves a Diploma in Journalism from the National Council for the Training of Journalists. After migrating to Australia at the end of 1984, she took up a Senior Journalist position with Cumberland Newspapers, based on the Parramatta Advertiser. She has since worked on the Daily Telegraph, Sydney Morning Herald and was a lecturer in Journalism at Macleay College in Sydney. Bev returned to Cumberland Newspapers (NewsLocal) and worked for 30 years covering all different mastheads, including Mosman Daily, Mount Druitt Standard and finally Hills Shire Times for the last 17 of those years. Bev’s passion has always been local community journalism.  She says “As a journalist, I have always seen it as my job to inform, inspire and involve.  I am a passionate advocate for organisations and people making a difference to the world around them. Connectedness is so important to the health of an individual but also to a community, no matter how small or large.

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