Alana Phegan wins at Tasmanian Women in Resources Awards

REWARDED: Alana Phegan with John Graeme, her award category sponsor. Picture: Rob Burnett
REWARDED: Alana Phegan with John Graeme, her award category sponsor. Picture: Rob Burnett

Bell Bay Aluminium has taken out the outstanding tradeswoman for the second year running. 

Alana Phegan made history at the smelter when she was the first female process controller on site when she was promoted on 2011. 

At Parliament house last week, she was awarded the Outstanding Tasmanian Tradeswoman Operator or Technician at the fourth annual Tasmanian Women in Resources.

Mrs Phegan said the award was unexpected. 

“It’s a great honour for me to be recognised in this way. It hasn’t always been easy for me and i have faced a number of challenges over the past 10 years, but my determination has paid off,” she said. 

Before starting her career at the smelter, Alana Phegan was a hairdresser. In 2007, after the salon sold and her hours were reduced, she applied for a process operator at the site. 

Ms Phegan was promoted five years later to process controller, the first female on site to do so. She is committed to mentoring women and encourages them to seek employment at Bell Bay Aluminium. 

“A lot of women that I speak to, including my friends, think that the work is physically challenging and not for them. I am determined to dispel that myth as i thought much the same before i started work here,” she said.

“It’s also about ensuring the next generation, and women such as my daughter, believe that no role is beyond them and they can be successful at whatever they choose to do.”

Mrs Phegan believes her greatest achievement is yet to come. 

“I have aspirations to become a crew leader so my plan is to work toward achieving that goal and equipping myself with the necessary skills and experience,” she said.

General manager Ray Mostogl congratulated Mrs Phegan on the award. 

“The award is a wonderful achievement and reflects the commitment and leadership shown by Alana in her role at Bell Bay,” he said. 

Mrs Phegan will represent Tasmania in the 2017 National Women in Resources Awards hosted by the Tasmanian Minerals and Energy Council in Launceston on August 31.