Welcome to Week 6 where we say farewell to one of our treasured staff members of NEGS, and welcome back to another. After fourteen years at NEGS, Dr Heather Fisher is retiring – at least partially retiring. We are fortunate to have persuaded Heather to be the NEGS Archivist two days a week, which is in dire need since the passing of Mrs Jean Newell. I would like to formally thank Heather for her unwavering service; wisdom and kindness of spirit for the past 14 years and we look forward to seeing her smiling face around NEGS for at least the next 14. I have attached for your perusal a biography about Heather written by Dr Darrell Fisher.
As the saying goes, one door closes and another one opens, and it is so. NEGS welcomes back Ms Laura Cambridge who will preside over the NEGS Resource Centre. Laura has spent the past year teaching in England, and travelling through Europe. This is a natural evolution for Laura who is a trained teacher librarian.
THE EDUCATIONAL JOURNEY OF HEATHER JEAN FISHER
(On her retirement from New England Girls School, August, 2017)
Heather was born in Frankston, Victoria, where her father was an instructor in the RAAF. She attended Kempsey High School and Newcastle University College, at that time a college of UNSW.
After graduating BA.Dip Ed, she was appointed to Gosford High School. After three years she moved to British Columbia, Canada to teach. On returning to Australia she was appointed to Narrabundah High School in Canberra. Up to this point her teaching areas were basically Economics and Geography. Resigning to start a family, she also did some teaching at Watson High in Canberra.
The family then moved to Dorrigo, where her husband became a Head Teacher and a further addition was added to the family. The family then moved to the Central Coast where Heather undertook Primary library teaching on a casual basis. Here she began studies through Charles Sturt University for a Master of Applied Science in librarianship. She then established a library at the Mount Penang Juvenile Justice Centre on the Central Coast, and as no permanent position was available in education at the time, became the Children’s and Young Adults’ Librarian in the Gosford Public Library system. Whilst here, she had her book “I Can Do That: Programs for Children in Libraries”, published. This book was the result of research visiting 32 public libraries in the USA and Canada on an ALIA travel grant, as she had been awarded the Marjorie Cotton Award 1996 for children’s librarianship by the Australian Libraries and Information Association.
In 1999 Heather resigned her position in the Public Library system to take up a position as Teacher Librarian at the Anglican Cathedral School in Grafton. Here, she spent two years as the NSW Judge on the national panel for the Children’s Book Council’s Book of the Year Awards. After three years in Grafton, establishing the new school library, Heather was appointed as Teacher Librarian at NEGS in Armidale. During this time in Armidale she has continued research into children’s literature and in 2011 was awarded a Doctor of Education (EdD) from UNE for her research into Children’s Book Awards. In 2013 Heather was awarded the Lady Cutler Award by the Children’s Book Council of Australia for her “Distinguished Service to Children’s Literature in NSW”.
In retirement Heather will continue her association, not only with children’s literature, as a member of the Armidale Branch of the Children’s Book Council, but also with NEGS as the School Archivist. She is also looking forward to engaging in her hobbies of embroidering, music (choir and piano) and bushwalking.
__________________________________________________________________________ (Information supplied by her husband, Dr Darrell Fisher, on the occasion of her retirement 18th August, 2017)