10 May 2023

Dedicated WTA disaster officer acknowledged with IWD award

| Matt Nicholls
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Inspector-General of Emergency Management Alistair Dawson presents Jo Moloney with her award in Weipa.

SHE was a pivotal player in keeping Weipa residents safe during the pandemic but Jo Moloney largely escaped the public eye.

However, those who know her best said she was a champion behind the scenes, working long days to ensure that Weipa and its surrounding communities were doing all they could to keep COVID-19 out of Cape York.

Late last month, Ms Moloney was surprised by her colleagues and the Queensland Inspector-General of Emergency Management with an International Women’s Day award for Excellence in Disaster Management.

“I got told there was a furniture auditing meeting at the new SES building and when I got there it straight away looked like something different,” she said.

“The QFES team from Cairns was there looking schmick, as well as the police, SES, ambos and the WTA staff.”

WTA chair Michael Rowland said it was fitting recognition for a dedicated Weipa resident.

“She was dropped into the disaster management officer position right at the beginning of COVID and handled it so well,” he said.

Ms Moloney said the biggest challenge of the role was keeping up with the changes in the early stages of the pandemic.

“We were having meetings every day and every day there would be changes,” she said.

“I learnt something new every day.”

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