Alison McLaren, Former President, WSROC Ltd
Alison McLaren, a resident of Winmalee in the Blue Mountains, has been nominated for the 2013 Women of the West Award for her work as President, WSROC Ltd and her tireless advocacy of Greater Western Sydney.
Alison has worked as a Blue Mountains City Councillor and has been involved in the Western Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils (WSROC) since 2004. At this time, Alison was aged just 23 years, and secured the record as being the youngest ever elected Councillor in the region.
By 2007, Alison had been elected Junior Vice President and Housing Spokesperson, and by 2008 was elected President of WSROC – a position that she filled until November 2012, making her the longest serving WSROC President.
As President of WSROC, Alison was a vocal advocate for better services for Greater Western Sydney, leading campaigns on issues as diverse as transport and infrastructure, population planning, urban planning, affordable housing, equity of health outcomes, environmental sustainability, and employment growth.
Alison has also demonstrated leadership in her role as Chair of the Leaders Forum for the Centre for Health Innovation and Partnership and as a Board Member of the Blue Mountains Division of General Practice.
Alison has been described as a “trail-blazer,” inspiring other young people, especially young women, to get involved in the running of their communities and making their voices heard on issues that affect them.
Eric Sidoti, Director of the Whitlam Institute within UWS, supported Alison’s nomination for the Women of the West Award with the personal recommendation, stating:
“Alison is a young woman whose contribution to Greater Western Sydney has been substantial. She is driven by a strong personal sense of social justice and by an apparent conviction that change doesn’t happen by accident.”
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