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McGill, Edna Betty (1927 - 2016)


26 October 1927
24 August 2016
Bayview, New South Wales
Migrant community Advocate, Political candidate and Public Education Advocate


Although she only stood for election once (Council for the Defence of Government Schools candidate for Heathcote in 1971), Edna McGill spent a lifetime campaigning for public education.


At the time of her campaign, Edna McGill had lived in the Heathcote area for more than two decades. She had been the Secretary of the Heathcote Progress Association for six years, the Heathcote Bush Fire Brigade, and the Parents and Citizens Associations of primary and secondary schools in the area over 15 years.

Her interest in public education did not wane. In 2003, she was a member of the Board of the NSW Community Language Schools. In 2004, she shared the first Meritorious Service to Public Education award with Professor Tony Vinson and Mr Jim Harkin. The citation on the award stated that "for more than 40 years, Edna McGill has made an outstanding contribution to education in NSW …her contribution covers such areas as curriculum, support for multicultural education, the education of indigenous students and for anti-racism programs"

She was awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia in 1986 for services to education and the community. She was a former Chair, Treasurer and member of Ethnic Communities' Council, and in 2005 was a member of the Management Committee.

She died at home on 24 August 2016 at home in the company of her beloved son Peter and friend, Julie.

Sources used to compile this entry: Media Release, Deputy Premier of NSW, 28 January 2004; Ethnic Communities' Council of NSW: Newsletter. June 2005; Ephemera on NSW State and local elections, Box 3, Mitchell Library collection, State Library of NSW, Sydney. Tribute in The Sydney Morning Herald,

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