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Thursday, 23 March 2023
Page: 52

Senator BARBARA POCOCK (South Australia) (13:53): I rise to remember my friend, union sister and passionate activist Michelle Hogan, who we sadly lost on 8 March. As I speak, the union and women's movements across South Australia are gathering at the Waterside Workers Hall in Port Adelaide to farewell Michelle and celebrate her life. I send my deepest sympathy to Rob, her partner, and to her family and wide circle of friends.

Michelle made the world a better place. We worked alongside each other, and many others, at the South Australian Labor council in the early 1990s. Michelle led the Anna Stewart project supporting women unionists. Later, she became assistant secretary at the Labor council and led it through many challenges. For 40 years Michelle was a passionate activist in education, community services, local government and health.

She was into celebration—never missing an International Women's Day or May Day. She contributed consistently to APHEDA, Union Aid Abroad, and she chaired the Port of Adelaide National Trust. Most recently she was Chair of South Australia's Working Women's Centre, where she made such a difference and is today so deeply missed.

Michelle was a builder, a thinker and a strategist. She was generous, kind, farsighted and principled. She was at the same time a very funny woman. With her dry humour she regularly pierced pomposity and paternalism, but I never saw her make a personal attack. She was not interested in climbing the slippery pole. She was ambitious for others. To so many of us she was also a friend of the best sort. She listened deeply. She remembered what you're up to. She made you laugh. She had a beautiful delicate rose tattoo on her always elegant shoulder, and truly she fought not only for bread but for roses too.

Her smiling face, her fabulous humour and her sharp-minded deep commitment to make the world a better place are deeply mourned. We're grateful for her life and the beauty she brought to the world.