Queensland Teachers' Journal, Vol 127 No number 5, 8 July 2022, page no.4
Late last year, Australian Education Union Federal Secretary Susan Hopgood announced her retirement.
Susan has long been a champion for gender equality, fair funding for public education, social justice and the union movement.
She has been a presence in the Union since I started teaching and has been an important mentor for myself and many other women activists. She is clever, empathetic, considered, passionate and articulate, and while we will miss her leading our federal Union, we are thankful for all she has done and will continue to do for educators everywhere.
Since becoming a mathematics teacher at Preston East High School in 1974, Susan has had a remarkable career filled with accomplishments, including becoming the first woman ever elected as Federal Secretary of the AEU in 2006. Susan was a Vice-President of the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) and is currently the president of Education International (EI), the global federation of education unions representing 32.5 million educators across 171 countries. She continues to be a strong, passionate voice for public education.
Susan’s original union was the Victorian Secondary Teachers Association (VSTA), where she became Women’s Officer, leading the Union’s affirmative action policy. In 1985, she was elected as the VSTA’s General Secretary, a position she held until the union amalgamated with the Teacher’s Federation of Victoria to form the Victorian branch of the AEU in 1995.
Upon the amalgamation, Susan became the Federal Women’s Officer, and was then elected deputy federal secretary.