19/12/2007 - 22:00

Leading women achieve across the board

19/12/2007 - 22:00

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Female business executives came to the fore in 2007, winning recognition in some of Australia’s most prominent business awards.

Leading women achieve across the board

Female business executives came to the fore in 2007, winning recognition in some of Australia’s most prominent business awards.

Wild Child founder and chief executive Leanne Preston won the 2007 Telstra Western Australian Business Women’s award and went on to be named as winner of the national award.

Ms Preston established Wild Child as a home-based business in Margaret River in 1997, when she was a young mother struggling to find an effective and acceptable treatment for head lice.

Its foundation product, ‘Quit Nits’, is the only head lice treatment to use naturally occurring insect hormone disruptors that are safe for pregnant and nursing mothers.

The company has proceeded to develop and market a range of natural health care products, including baby care and sunscreens, containing only natural or nature-identical ingredients.

Wild Child products are sold in more than 14 countries around the world.

The company has won several awards over the years, including an Australian export award in 2006 in the small-to-micro business category.

Another successful WA business executive to gain recognition this year was Dr Patricia Kailis, who was selected in the Ernst & Young entrepreneur of the year awards as a master of entrepreneurship, joining the likes of Harold Clough, Len Buckeridge, Denis Cullity and Stan Perron.

Dr Kailis has worked as a medical researcher in the early days of genetic counselling, as chair of the privately owned company MG Kailis Group, which has interests in prawns, lobsters and pearling, and as a philanthropist.

The MG Kailis Group was founded by Dr Kailis and her husband, the late Michael Kailis, in 1962, when they began a small rock lobster operation in Dongara.

Australian Mine Services co-founder and director Julie Smith-Massara won the WA Business News 40under40 first amongst equals award this year.

Ms Smith-Massara was the first woman to win this award in its six-year history.

She jointly established Australian Mine Services with her husband Ian Massara in 2003, and since then it has grown rapidly to have turnover of more than $20 million and 120 staff.

It specialises in the fabrication and maintenance of heavy earthmoving equipment and fixed plant for the mining industry.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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