Penelope Twemlow #SheInspires

April 5, 2017

SheBrisbane went along to a unique Autumn Designer Rummage Sale in East Brisbane last Saturday. All funds raised at the rummage sale were donated to support the frontline work of the Women’s Legal Service (WLS) who provide free legal and welfare help to women experiencing domestic violence.

SheBrisbane spoke to Penelope Twemlow, founder and Chair of Women in Power, whose mission is to promote and improve the electrical and electrotechnology industry by the advancement of women within it, supported the rummage sale as part of her fundraising campaign for Dancing CEO’s, WLS’s annual charity event which Penelope will take to the stage on May 5. “Your loose change could save a life, literally”, said Penelope.


You name it and Penelope Twemlow has probably done it….or at least thought about doing it. She’s an achiever and accomplished leader.

She currently has three executive roles, Chair of Women in Power, set up in 2015 to promote and improve the electrical and electrotechnology industry by the advancement of women within it, Chair of Queensland Electrical Safety Education Committee and CEO of Energy Skills Queensland, all challenging positions in heavily male dominated industries.

Before then Penelope’s career included Warfare Officer in the Royal Australian Navy where she rose to the position of Chief of Staff, as well serving as a police investigator with the Australian Defence Force. Penelope was recently announced as the Queensland winner of the Telstra Business Women’s For Purpose and Social Enterprise Award, and is an overall Australian Finalist for that category.

She has a list of undergraduate and post graduate qualifications in IT, Economics, Health, Safety, Environment, MBA, Quality, Auditing, Training and Project Management.

Asked what had been her most significant step in her career in the last five years, she said her proudest achievement has been two-fold. “The first was attaining my five-year goal of the CEO position,” she said.

The second was graduating from the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) whilst being employed full-time as a CEO.”

She said that on the way she had learnt:

  • The pursuit of happiness is about finding meaning.
  • Lifelong pursuit of happiness is elusive. It’s really about pursuing meaning and living a meaningful life.
  • Seeking validation from others invalidates you.
  • The only person you should try to be better than is the person you were yesterday. You don’t need other people to validate you. You are already valuable.
  • Regret hurts far worse than fear. It is only when we risk losing that we truly open the possibility to win.
  • Life is too unpredictable for rigid expectations. When you stop predicting and expecting things to be a certain way, you can appreciate them for what they are.
  • Unanticipated hardships are inevitable and helpful

* Penelope is a domestic violence survivor. As a result she is a passionate supporter of initiatives to stop domestic violence as well as being a mental health ambassador.

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