A cracker career from good deeds

• Jill Zumack is this year’s WA local government officer of the year. Photo by Jeremy Dixon

• Jill Zumack is this year’s WA local government officer of the year. Photo by Jeremy Dixon

Jill Zumack never imagined she’d still be working at Cockburn council 32 years after filling in for a friend way back in 1981.

“I did some relief work for a friend who went on holidays for three weeks, but then she moved to Busselton,” she told the Herald.

“Then I did some part-time work and filled in for so-and-so when they were away and have been working full-time for the past 20 years.”

Fast-forward to 2013 and the now human operations manager is in charge of 120 staff.

This week the 64-year-old was recognised for her work with Cockburn, winning the local government officer of the year award at WALGA’s annual gong fest.

“I was really surprised,” Ms Zumack told the Herald. “I knew nothing about it. It’s a real honour.”

Ms Zumack says her proudest moment in three decades was helping set up a disability supported work crews program.

“It has been wonderful getting work for those people with disabilities who may have never worked before,” she says.

“We have probably got 30 young people into the workforce which is a win for the families, the workers with disability and us.”

Ms Zumack says she was chuffed to be part of creating the universal playground at Manning Park.

“A young girl from Croatia came up and said how wonderful it was to have the playground as there was nothing like it where she came from,” she recalls. “Her eyes were big and open and she was so happy.”

She has no plans to retire any time soon.

“I would like to go through amalgamations over the next three years,” she says. “The culture at Cockburn is excellent and the management is always understanding which isn’t always the case in other places.”


One response to “A cracker career from good deeds

  1. Long live Jill Zumack (or long may you reign at Cockburn)!

    I’d heard Cockburn Council’s attention to disability issues was above average.

    Outstanding to hear your proudest achievement is the multiple work opportunities you have provided for people with disabilities.

    Thank you so much for your contribution.

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