Carolyn Mason

BEcon, BA(Hons 1st), FAICD, FIPAA

At St Margaret’s 1961-1967

Carolyn Mason had a government career in economics, health, employment services, advancement of women, treasury and audit and the residential tenancies sector, and then in her own business.

Carolyn said: “St Margaret’s provided me with an education, female role models and encouragement for women’s achievement in business and society. However, in 1970, private sector companies declined to employ me as a female economics graduate. They said I would just get married soon and leave! So, in 1971, I became an economist in government, and a campaigner for over 30 years for equal opportunity with the women’s movement, the union movement and then government itself.”

With her government and women’s campaigner knowledge and skills, Carolyn became the first state-based Women’s Employment Advisor for the Federal Government in 1984. In 1990, she became the first Women’s Advisor in Queensland to Premier Wayne Goss, and head of the Women’s Policy Unit. For five years, she steered the introduction of government policies and programs to address the needs of women which are still in evidence today. The establishment of the Register of Women suitable for appointments to Boards and Statutory Authorities in 1992 left a legacy for women’s achievements in corporate boardrooms.

In 1998, Carolyn became the CEO of the Residential Tenancies Authority. Over eight years, she introduced extensive legislative reform, including the coverage of boarding houses and hostel accommodation. In 2007, Carolyn formed her consultancy business focused on social justice policy and research, women’s mentoring and programs to build performance through improving relationship management and partnerships.  She delivered programs to professional groups studying in Australia in partnership with QUT. Her work with people from over 20 countries demonstrated that strong relationship management is critical to success across organisations, sectors and cultures. 

Carolyn served on the Queensland Museum Board for five years from 2006, and was on its Audit and Risk Management Committee for seven years.  She was the community representative on the Board of Professional Engineers of Queensland for six years from 2007. Since 2014, Carolyn has brought her professional skills and values to the role as Chair of the Board of Communify Ltd. Communify is an innovative community service organisation that is successful in advocating for, and delivering services to, disadvantaged groups, and to those over 65 years.

Carolyn is now an online campaigner for causes that will leave a better legacy for future generations, including for her children and grandchildren.


View all notables