Enid Lyons

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Enid Lyons

Enid Lyons (1897-1981)
A teacher and politician, Enid Muriel Lyons (nee Burnell) was born at Duck River (now Smithton) in the far north-west of Tasmania. In 1915 she married future prime minister Joseph Lyons and bore 12 children. In 1943, four years after her husband's death, Enid Lyons contested the seat of Darwin (western Tasmania) and became the first woman member of the Federal House of Representatives. In 1949 she became vice-president of the Executive Council - the first woman appointed to Federal Cabinet. Illness forced her to retire in 1951, but she remained active, promoting family and women's issues and working as a newspaper columnist and a commissioner of the Australian Broadcasting Commission. She also published three books: 'So We Take Comfort', 'The Old Haggis' and 'Among the Carrion Crows'. Dame Enid died in 1981, remembered as 'a sort of matriarch among politicians'



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