Port Hedland Industries Council Chief Executive Officer Kirsty Danby has been awarded life membership of the WA Mining Club.

The honour was announced at the club’s annual St Barbara’s Day lunch last week.

It is the first time a woman has been awarded life membership.

Announcing the honour, club President Natalie Taylor said Kirsty’s passion for the mining industry was undeniable.

“Her work advocating for better education, support for the next generation of mining professionals, and diversity and inclusion has directly helped industry adopt a better image,” Natalie said.

Kirsty joined the club in 2012 and was an active committee member until 2019, including as president from 2016 to 2019.

Kirsty said she was grateful and humbled to receive life membership.

“Everything I have put into the WA Mining Club has been for the club, our members and our awesome industry,” Kirsty said.

“During my time at the club we established a range of initiatives geared towards keeping the club relevant, serving our members, and building for future security.”

Lunch events grew from eight a year with eight speakers in 2012 to 14 events featuring 41 speakers in 2019 — with record attendees at every event.

Education programs were introduced, including STEM UnitED and the ECU Education series.

Increasing membership rates and membership diversity — particularly across gender, youth and indigenous representation — was a focus.

“While 2013 was the first female speaker for the club, it is now common to see females and people under 30 on stage sharing their experience and perspectives,” Kirsty said.

“And of course, the Young Professionals initiative for the next generation of mining leaders.

“It has played a pivotal role bridging the generational gap across industry and promoting diversity of thought and ideas.

“I created the governance structure and mentored the first batch of YP Committee for their first year of successful operation, paving the way for future leaders to develop skills, capability and confidence at the earliest stages of their careers.”