Carla Nolan, Michelle Coats, Katrina Webb, Sarah Brokken, Dani Harrison and Kylie Devine-Hewitt at the Rio Tinto Yarwun International Women's Day event at Yaralla.
Carla Nolan, Michelle Coats, Katrina Webb, Sarah Brokken, Dani Harrison and Kylie Devine-Hewitt at the Rio Tinto Yarwun International Women's Day event at Yaralla.

Rio Tinto celebrates role of women

OLYMPIC gold medallist Katrina Webb was in Gladstone on Tuesday as a special guest celebrating International Women's Day.

She shared her story of triumph after a major setback as Rio Tinto Yarwun, Queensland Alumina and Boyne Smelter joined forces for a night themed, Each for Equal.

Rio Tinto Yarwun International Women's Day event at Yaralla Guest Speaker - Katrina Webb
Rio Tinto Yarwun International Women's Day event at Yaralla Guest Speaker - Katrina Webb

At 18 years old, Webb was given a netball scholarship to the Australian Institute of Sport but was diagnosed with cerebral palsy when she started to experience weakness on her right side.

In the spirit that makes a champion, Webb turned that weakness into strength and competed in three Paralympic Games.

Across various athletic events, her final tally was six gold, silver and bronze medals.

Rio Tinto Yarwun general manager Mark Gilmore said her story was an inspiration to everyone facing a setback in life.

"Katrina shows us what's possible in the face of a challenge," Mr Gilmore said.

"She exemplifies success and it was an honour to host her as part of International Women's Day."

Rio Tinto Yarwun International Women's Day event at Yaralla L-R Leigh Jones, Scott Reid and BJ Moore
Rio Tinto Yarwun International Women's Day event at Yaralla L-R Leigh Jones, Scott Reid and BJ Moore

The event was part of a series of celebrations to mark the value of a diverse and inclusive workforce.

"Each site is working hard to make sure we foster an environment that welcomes, accepts and embraces the diversity of our employees and reflects the population outside the gate," Mr Gilmore said.

"We know a diverse and inclusive workforce achieves better safety outcomes, improved financial performance, higher productivity, increased innovation, better decision-making, a stronger talent pipeline and better relationships with our site communities."

"We have built a strategy, formed a dedicated team and have a range of activities in place to work on improving our diversity.

"It is not only the right thing to do, it makes business sense."

Fiona Shannon, Sharna Walker, Maddy Courtney, Alicia Newport, Sandra Brien and Audrey Fehlhaber at Rio Tinto Yarwun’s International Women's Day event at Yaralla.
Fiona Shannon, Sharna Walker, Maddy Courtney, Alicia Newport, Sandra Brien and Audrey Fehlhaber at Rio Tinto Yarwun’s International Women's Day event at Yaralla.