Gail spent more than twenty years working in senior positions in public services in Australia and overseas. So what is she doing in a politics program? Gail became interested in Women’s Liberation and the Civil Rights movement while studying in North America. On her return to Australia she joined Women’s Liberation and was a founding member of the Women’s Electoral Lobby (WEL). Her involvement in feminist politics resulted in her joining the public service to introduce EEO programs for women and minority group members; programs that she shaped and led throughout Australia for the next 15 years. She came to the ANU to research and write on the history of WEL and EEO. Gail worked with Professor Marian Sawer on the ARC funded History of WEL Project. While much had been written about WEL a full-scale history had not been attempted before. The research to be undertaken was daunting but finally completed and the book, " Making Women Count" A history of the Women’s Electoral Lobby in Australia was published in 2008. Related papers, research reports and a selection of historical photographs can be found on the ANU History of WEL website. The website continues to generate many requests for information and photographs.
Gail has also been researching the development and subsequent outcome of EEO programs in the Australian Public Service and comparing these to the introduction and outcome of similar initiatives in the Canadian Public Service. In 2011 the emphasis of her research will be on documenting the experiences of the early WEL women who worked on EEO in public service positions or staff associations. Their views will be sought on the effectiveness of these programs and the present situation of women and minority group members in public sector employment today.