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23 November 2017

Not just another job: Lisa Mitchell

After patiently waiting to become a mum – it was a defining moment in her life when Lisa Mitchell had her first baby. Enjoying a blissful life as a happy mother of two, it couldn’t be just any job that would take her away from her time with her family. Lisa’s hard work and passion as a Corporate Services Manager has also contributed to East Kalgoorlie Primary School being named a finalist for the WA Premier’s Excellence in Aboriginal Education Award.

Tell us a little bit about your childhood. What is your earliest fond memory?

I had a fun childhood spent mainly outdoors.  I loved playing dress ups with my sister.  We had some beautiful dresses from our mother and some lovely stilettos that we hobbled around in and pretended to be grown-ups.  Another favourite memory is when we both got our big bikes one Christmas and our father impressed us by riding one around the yard backwards.  We couldn’t believe what he was able to do and couldn’t stop laughing.

What did you enjoy doing as a child?  

I always loved being outside and playing sport. I played basketball, netball, softball and swam almost every day.  I also spent hours riding my bike around the neighbourhood.  My cousins lived quite close and we all played together at our grandmother’s house.

Has there been a defining moment in your life?

Lisa Mitchell.

East Kalgoorlie Primary School's Lisa Mitchell is a finalist for WA School Services Staff Member of the Year - and says she couldn't imagine working anywhere else.

East Kalgoorlie Primary School's Lisa Mitchell is a finalist for WA School Services Staff Member of the Year and says she couldn't imagine working anywhere else. 

That would definitely be when I had my first baby.  My husband and I had tried for six years to have a baby and we were beginning to think it may never happen.  So when I gave birth to my son it was the start of a whole new life for us.  I fell pregnant again 11 months later with my second boy – another delight.

If you were limited to just one person to get life advice from, who would you choose and why?

I would love to be able to choose my mother but she has advanced Alzheimer’s disease and no longer knows who I am.  She was always my go to person and I miss our daily chats.  My other go to person is my older sister, Julie.  She is always there for me and the one I can talk to when I need advice or just someone to bounce things off.  She’s always honest with me and is such a caring person.

What made you want to work in education?

After taking so long to actually have children we had made the decision that they would not have to go to child care and any job I took would work with me caring for the boys. I never realised when I was given this opportunity how much it would influence my life.  From the day I started it was obvious that this was never going to be just another job.  It has become the very fabric of my life and I could not imagine working anywhere else.  The children, the staff, the site and all that goes with it consume my days.  I absolutely love it!

Aside from education, what are you passionate about?

I’m passionate about my boys.  My eldest son has moved to Mandurah and plays in the State Basketball League for Mandurah Magic and my youngest has just finished doing Year 12.  They are both wonderful young men and I’m extremely proud of them.

Where do you get your inspiration from?

The deputy principal at my school has been a big influence on me.  She is the most compassionate and patient person I have ever met and she has nurtured me and helped me to become a more kind and understanding person.  I will be forever grateful.

You spend an awful lot of your life at work so make sure your job is something you love.

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