Interviews by Francis Lynch with people who are living their lives with purpose.
Maria Harries has been involved with many organisations and causes over many years. She avoids being labelled and says that she is a frustrated gardener and would prefer to be gardening than writing these days. Despite this she has many current interests and commitments.
Maria’s professional commitments include being Senior Honorary Research Fellow at UWA, Adjunct Professor at Curtin University School and working as a researcher and research supervisor. She has also held governance roles with a number of state and national organisations involved with funding, service delivery, health, mental health, violence, adult survivors of abuse, and child, adult and family welfare.
During this podcast Maria referred to several podcasts that she regularly listens to including:
The Minefield - Waleed Aly and Scott Stephens
Soul Search podcast
The philosophers zone’ podcast
A number of books were also mentioned including:
Gondwana Theology - Garry Deverell
For Small Creatures Such As We: Rituals and reflections for finding wonder - Sasha Sagan
A Bridge Between: Spanish Benedictine Missionary Women in Australia - Katherine Massam
This podcast was recorded in 2020 before the outcome of the US Presidential election was known.
Ashley Reid has been in senior roles in the community sector for over 20 years and is currently the CEO of Cancer Council WA. In this episode Ashley reflects on the experiences he has had in his leadership journey and how important mentors and learning experiences have been for him.
Angie Paskevicius has many hats that she wears and wide range of experiences that she brings to them. In this episode she talks about some of her early experiences and how they have influenced who she has become. This includes the experience of growing up in country Tasmania near an old-style institution for people with disability influencing her choice to become a Speech Pathologist.
Angie has written about her early adult experiences and challenges and how they brought her to WA - see her blog here.
In this conversation talks about she reconnected with her Lithuanian relatives after her father had died. He had come to Australia in his early twenties and he had eventually lost touch with them. A chance encounter a few years ago reconnected Angie with this extended family and has helped her see her father's story in a new light.
Angie has worked in CEO roles at Therapy Focus and now Holyoake for over 20 years, and also been a Non-Executive Director on many Boards, including currently as Chairperson for Interchange WA.
In this conversation Lou Forster speaks about how she is a connector, bringing people together in social and work situations and breaking down the barriers between people. No wonder she has found herself as Head of Brand & People at Chorus, an organisation which itself has a story of bringing people and organisations together in a very successful merger in WA.
Lou has been working in the human services industry for 20 years and has been in a number of management and leadership positions in organisations and as a Non Executive Director. As a result she’s developed a lot of knowledge and skill, but reflects in this episode about how she’s now valuing the use of conversations with people as a powerful tool in her approach (and mentions Nicky Howe - see earlier episode).
There's a lot to reflect on in this episode. At one point Lou reflects on how purpose in life encompasses both her work and personal lives:
“Your resume and your eulogy very rarely have the same things in them. And sometimes we can spend our whole life building the resume. But at your funeral even if you have been hugely successful in your career It's very unlikely that anything in that career will be what people will talk about. So, I guess I don't know where or when I heard that, but I thought, okay, as much as I need to put work into building my resume, I also need to make sure that there are some things to say in my eulogy.”
Ear Hustle podcast
Drive by Daniel Pink
Chorus Voices Podcast
Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
Reset - reviewing series 1 - new episodes soon
Series 1 of the Living with Purpose podcast was released in 2016. It's been a long time since then but I'm getting ready to do more episodes and will release them later in 2020. This episode reflects on some of the people and highlights from series 1.
I recently had a great conversation with Lucy Morris where she explained that her main role in life is tell stories of meaning and purpose. Lucy is the CEO at Baptistcare, a priest, a wife, a mother, a grandmother – the list goes on. I’ve known Lucy for over 20 years and I was struck in this conversation how she has grown into her beliefs and convictions in a such a powerful way. I encourage you to have a listen to the conversation as there is so much to learn from Lucy – she is a thoughtful and accomplished leader. I’m telling stories into the heart of the system and to the outer edges of the system. I’m trying to humanise and make visible the preciousness and uniqueness of the work that is done Lucy is someone who has reflected and learnt from the experiences in her life. A very telling comment she made in this interview was: When I stepped into Anglicare and I met people for the first time who were open and advocating around social justice issues – and I was rocked – absolutely rocked – all my middle class aspirational stuff came into question for the first time. So my young adulthood was shifted. And then when I got a job at MercyCare. For the first time I stepped into an organisation led by women, designed by women, seen through the eyes of women. And for the first time, the very first time, I saw female leadership in all its glory, and goodness me, this is very different.