Joanna and Frankie
Joanna and Frankie

I remember my undergraduate uni days well.

I remember the countless hours writing assignments (often at 3am), the sense of bewilderment as exam timetables were released and the overwhelming surge of joy as I finally submitted that 3000 word ass of an assignment that had been hanging over my head for weeks.

But most of all I remember the people I met and formed friendships with along the way.

One of these was a girl whose “snow white eyes” and sense of self had me intrigued from the beginning. Joanna was a Journalism and Communications student who I met through a mutual friend during our time in assessment purgatory – otherwise known as a ‘group assignment’.

Those obscure first university years are now lost in yesteryear and things have changed. Somewhere along the line we grew up.

Joanna is now CEO of the biggest youth network organisation in the state, YNOT – Youth Network of Tasmania. YNOT, the peak body for the non-government youth sector in Tasmania, was developed as a community response to youth issues. Visit for more information.

Joanna is very dedicated to her job and very passionate about issues affecting 12-25 year olds. Her responsibilities range from planning statewide conferences and events and responding to federal budget decisions. It is not uncommon for me to receive a response to an email after 8pm to say that she is still working. Or to find she is in another state.

It was for this reason that in 2013 she was nominated and shortlisted for two Telstra Business Women’s Awards (Community and Government Award, Young Business Women’s Award).

Underneath her very public role is a loyal and kind individual who is dedicated to her family and friends.

I associate her with the State cinema and bookshops and cups of tea – which is probably a strong indication of things we have shared. She also loves animals and shares her home with three cats, a rabbit, and her beloved dog Frankie – Oh and also three humans.

Here is her take on My Island Home


Where are you from?
I am Tasmanian born and bred.

What is the first thing a stranger would notice about you?
I found this question a hard one to answer so I asked my step-daughter and she says my smile and my eyes, so we’ve decided that means people would notice that I have an expressive face first.

What do you do?

I’m the CEO of the peak body for the non government youth sector and young people in Tasmania. I love my job.

Best three places in Tas?
Bruny Island. I love going here. It is such a beautiful place and I always feel completely relaxed when I go here.

D’entrecasteaux Channel/Huon Valley area. My family had a shack down this way while we were growing up. I love the diversity of the communities in these areas, the clean air, beaches and how green everything is.

What do I love about Tas?
I love how friendly everyone is and how easy it is to get around. It’s not until you travel that you realise how lucky we are to live here. And all of the East Coast of Tas!

What wouldn’t people know about you?
I am pretty much an open book…at least I think that is the impression I give to other people…

What do you do in your free time?
Play with my dachshund puppy, read, dream about traveling, hang out with my family and friends.

If you could learn anything, what would it be?
I really wish that I was fluent in more than one language. I know only words and phrases of other languages and I am so envious of people who are multilingual.


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