Australian Women's Register

An initiative of The National Foundation for Australian Women (NFAW) in conjunction with The University of Melbourne

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    Pauline Griffin, courtesy of ANU Archives, ANAU 225/484. Used with permission..
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  • From Lady Denman to Katy Gallagher: A Century of Women's Contributions to Canberra

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Griffin, Pauline Marcus (1925 - )

AM

Born
21 December 1925
Occupation
Administrator, Arbitration commissioner, Personnel manager and Social worker
Alternative Names

Summary

Pauline Griffin was a Commissioner of the Australian Conciliation and Arbitration Commission from 1975 to 1990 and a member of the Australian National University Council from 1978 to 1998. She was chair of the National Committee on Discrimination in Employment and Occupation in the 1980s and a member of the 4th National Women's Consultative Council in the 1990s.

Details

Pauline Griffin was born on 21 December 1925 in Sydney. She attended Abbotsleigh School in Wahroonga, completing her leaving certificate in 1942. She graduated from the University of Sydney with a Bachelor of Arts in 1946 and a Diploma of Social Studies in 1947.

She began her career as a social worker with the Local Board of Health, City of Adelaide in 1947 and then moved to the Commonwealth Department of Immigration in Sydney from 1949 to 1951. In 1953 she became a personnel officer, later personnel manager at Bradmill Industries Limited, where she worked for the next twenty years. The then Managing Director and Chairman (and later, Chancellor of the University of New South Wales), Sir Robert Webster was a pioneer in the 1940s in the appointment of women to management and technical positions.

She undertook further studies in personnel and production management at the Sydney Technical College in 1954 and in industrial administration at the University of Melbourne in 1956. She participated in HRH the Duke of Edinburgh's Second Commonwealth Study Conference in Canada in 1962, an International Conference on Social Work in Brazil also in 1962, and an OECD meeting on the problems of women workers held in Paris in 1973.

Pauline Griffin took up the position of personnel manager at Ethnor Pty Ltd in 1973 but left in 1975 on her appointment as a Commissioner of the Australian Conciliation and Arbitration Commission (from 1988, the Industrial Relations Commission) where she served until retiring in December 1990. During her time with the Commission she served on a number of government committees: 1976-1979 as a member of the Commonwealth Committee of Inquiry into Education and Training, and 1982-1986 as Chair of the National Committee on Discrimination in Employment and Occupation. She attended an ILO Panel Meeting in Geneva in 1974 and was an adviser to the Australian government delegation to the International Labour Conference in Geneva in 1985 on discrimination in employment.

From 1990 to 1993 she was a member of the Fourth National Women's Consultative Council and from 1992 to 1997 a member of the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission's National Advisory Committee on Discrimination in Employment and Occupation.

She also served as a member of the Management Committee for Barnardos Australia (1981-1997), as a councillor and honorary fellow of the Institute of Personnel Management, NSW Division, as a board member of Zonta International, Sydney Branch, as Patron of the Industrial Relations Society of NSW (1994-1999) and was a member of the Board of Directors, Australian-American Educational Foundation (Fulbright Foundation) from 1994 to 1999.

Her involvement with the Australian National University began with her appointment to the ANU Council in 1978 and she served in that capacity until 1998. Her committee memberships from 1990 to 2000 included being a member of the Higher Degrees Committee, the Governing Body of Fenner Hall, the Appeals Committee (Deputy Chair and Chair), and the Buildings and Grounds Committee. She took a lead role in the organisation of the University's 50th anniversary celebrations in 1996 as Chair of the Public Affairs Committee.

She was elected Pro-Chancellor in 1991 and continued in that position until 1998 which also marked the end of her appointment as an ANU Council member and her election as an Honorary Fellow of University House.

She was appointed by the NSW Government as a Senior Executive Service Grievance Mediator from 1998 to 2002. From 2003 to 2005 she chaired the ANU Foundation for the Visual Arts.

She was appointed a member of the Order of Australia in 1988 and received an honorary Doctor of Letters degree from Macquarie University in 1990. In 2002, the University Student Services building at the Australian National University (which had previously been known as the Chancellery Annex) was renamed the Pauline Griffin building in her honour.

Sources used to compile this entry: From Lady Denman to Katy Gallagher: A Century of Women's Contributions to Canberra, Australian Women's Archives Project, February 2013, http://www.womenaustralia.info/exhib/ldkg; Papers of Pauline Griffin, 1944 - 2009, ANUA 352; Australian National University Archives; ANU Annual Reports, 1978-1998; Personal communications with Pauline Griffin, July-August 2012.

Archival resources

Australian National University Archives

  • Papers of Pauline Griffin, 1944 - 2009, ANUA 352; Australian National University Archives. Details

Digital resources

Title
Pauline Griffin
Type
Image
Source
ANU Archives, ANAU 225/484. Used with permission.

Details

Maggie Shapley

Site-wide information and acknowledgements

National Foundation for Australian Women The University of Melbourne, eScholarship Research Centre

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ISSN 2207-3124