International Women’s Day – Christine Thompson

News story
Christine Thompson has seen some significant developments for women in the workplace during her public sector career that spans more than a quarter of a century.
Photo of Christine Thompson

Christine Thompson has seen some significant developments for women in the workplace during her public sector career that spans more than a quarter of a century.

As Director Workforce Strategy in the Workforce Policy and Diversity division, she is one of the many outstanding women leaders making a tremendous contribution in building an inclusive and diverse future-fit public sector.

Christine began her career with the Western Australian Police Force (WAPOL) and it was here that she developed an interest in human resources. She also discovered her passion for diversity, women’s health and mental health, and social justice.

During her 10 years plus at WAPOL, she had a mentor who encouraged her to look into opportunities to step out of her comfort zone and to study and try new things. She seized those opportunities and her career took a different trajectory.

Looking back, she says these were pivotal moments in her career. She continues to advocate studying and working simultaneously as it engenders a different way of thinking and approaching challenges. She also continues to be an active advocate of mentoring and being mentored – and emphasises to always be on the lookout out for opportunities for learning.

Christine believes one of the many benefits of working in the public sector is the abundance of opportunities for women.

“Now is always the best time to take on an opportunity,” she says.

“Women often wait, but when we worry about whether we can do it and balance everything in our busy lives, the opportunity can pass us by. Women should just do it and learn as they go.”

And would she recommend women to consider a career in the public sector?

“Absolutely,” she says without hesitation. “I owe everything to the public sector. I’ve had a fantastically privileged career where I have been able to share what I have learned to give back to the public sector and help the community. I don’t think I’d work anywhere else.”

The public sector has come a long way but Christine is adamant that there’s a lot more work to be done.

“While over 70% of the public sector workforce are women, we still have not achieved equity for women in leadership. We have a lot more to do to change mindsets and overcome past inequities to truly value women in our workplaces and our community,” she says.

International Women’s Day is a chance to ensure all our workplaces are free of bias, stereotypes and discrimination. Christine is certainly committed to this vision.

Page reviewed 8 March 2022