A glance at the Australian of the Year finalists for 2021 demonstrates just how far we've come as a nation.
The finalists represent many sectors of society, many of which have long been considered minorities or faced great struggles on the path for equity.
The eight finalists, one from every state and territory, show diversity through gender, age, race and disabilities.
While their lived experiences are all different, they are connected through their values of resilience, strength, and a desire to live a better life for themselves and their community.
The finalists are all deserving winners; however, we are most proud of Grace Tame here in Tasmania.
The youngest contender for the award this year, it's befitting that Ms Tame will have an opportunity to have the nation hear her story after years of being silenced due to former Tasmanian laws.
"Journalists, commentators and even my perpetrator have been able to publicly discuss my case, I'm the only one who was not allowed to," Ms Tame told media back in 2019.
Ms Tame's identity was restricted due to laws that were designed to protect victims. However, the laws assumed all survivors would want to be protected.
Instead, Ms Tame had a two-year battle in the Supreme Court to allow her to speak.
What followed was a change in the law to allow survivors of sexual abuse to apply to have their identity revealed. Now survivors will not have to fight to be heard - all thanks to Ms Tame.
On January 25, the Australian of the Year will be revealed.
Regardless of the result, all the finalists will have their cause, rightfully, elevated.
If one survivor of sexual assault, or anyone who feels their voice has been silenced, gains strength from seeing Ms Tame on the national stage than that will be a win.
But, hopefully, Ms Tame will be recognised as Tasmania's first national winner, and she will have the opportunity to spread her message across the nation over the next 12 months.