Jess Gallagher Summer & Winter Paralympic Medallist



200 Women Who Will Change The Way You See The World


It still feels like a dream my involvement in the 200 WOMEN project. Out of the blue I received an invitation from a publisher in New Zealand asking if I would share my story in an incredible project they were working on, it certainly sparked my interest and desire to learn more.

The philosophy of Geoff and Ruth (the authors) to ask 5 questions to 200 women from all over the world, from all walks of life, some famous, many not but all with an incredible story to tell. The simplicity of these questions revealed just how diverse we all truly are but how many beliefs we hold together as one.

The book is fascinating and terribly difficult to put down as the intrigue of each person stands tall in how they see life from their perspective. It is officially released in Australia on October 31 and will be available worldwide from any good book store on this same date.

It was a privilege to attend the official launch in Sydney along with 20 of the 200 WOMEN featured in the book alongside many others. To be honest, it was pretty overwhelming hearing all their stories. It evoked so much humility and gratitude inside of me. I was blown away by the strength, courage and passion each and every one of them displayed. The book has a beautiful quote in it which resonated so strongly with me, in particular at the launch…

‘What separates an ordinary women from an extraordinary one? The belief that she is ordinary'.

Jody Williams, Nobel Laureate  


(At the official launch)

I also had the opportunity as a guest of Westpac to attend their own celebration of achieving 50% women leadership in their company. That’s 3,000 of the 6,000 leadership positions at Westpac being held by woman! There is a great depth of conversation in society currently as the push for greater opportunities for woman in the corporate (and other) sectors and it was fantastic being in the presence of Westpac’s leadership, witnessing their passion and understanding how much benefit this has created for their company. There are so many companies talking the talk but Westpac are certainly walking the walk and reaping the benefits.

Westpac also jumped on the 200 WOMEN bandwagon to help showcase the stories through a digital art exhibition currently on display for free at the Sydney Opera House. If you are in Sydney take the time to go check it out, it’s pretty special!

An interactive event of curated stories from 200 Women.

Ever wanted to pick an American Nobel Prize winner’s brain? See an Indian actor play her true self? Watch an Aussie athlete poised in their seat? Or hear what makes an African politWestpac invites you to 200 Women: The Listening Ground, an interactive storytelling project that embraces diversity and equality across eight powerful topics: What Matters / Life Stories / Happiness / Pain / Change / Perspectives / Inspiration / A Single Word.

The stories belong to the women themselves. Some are confronting, many uplifting, all authentic. And, while we accept that not everyone will agree with all views, we are proud to have a conversation about a range of issues that are important to women and men alike.

Event details.

Everyone is welcome at:
Sydney Opera House, Western Broadwalk
Wednesday 25th October – Monday 6th November 2017
8am - 11pm daily
Admission is free.

You can find my story in the topic ‘A Single Word’.

If you can’t make it to Sydney Westpac have also turned the digital art exhibit into a podcast which you can listen to here!



(Joining Westpac's 50/50 Women in Leadership celebration)