Annie Fogarty interview, 24 July 2014

Dublin Core


Annie Fogarty interview, 24 July 2014


Fogarty Foundation


Annie with her husband Brett established The Fogarty Foundation in 2000 and has been the Executive Chairperson since inception.
Having graduated with an Arts degree from The University of Western Australia, Annie’s work in marketing and public relations has primarily been in the tourism and arts sectors. In 2008, Annie and Brett were both awarded Honorary Doctorate Degrees in Letters from The University of Western Australia and Annie was awarded the Order of Australia AM in 2013 for her services to education.
Annie is involved in a number of boards and committees, including the Roseworth Primary School, Board, The Fremantle Press Board, The University of Western Australia’s Senate Development Committee, The Centre for Social Impact WA Advisory Group, the Leading Learning in Education and Philanthropy (LLEAP) Advisory Group, The ECU Fogarty Learning Centre Advisory Group and the Fogarty EDvance Management Group.
Annie has experience in public and private stakeholder engagement and liaison, project management and development of effective partnership relationships.


Fogarty, Annie


University of Western Australia Historical Society


Copyright holder University of Western Australia


MP3 files


Oral History

Oral History Item Type Metadata


Julia Wallis


Annie Fogarty


47 minutes, 12 seconds

Bit Rate/Frequency

128 kbs

Time Summary

Track 1
00:00 Introduction by Julia Wallis

Track 2
00:00 Annie Fogarty. Born Elizabeth Anne Walter in South Africa. Came to Western Australia in 1963, aged 3. Annie’s father worked at UWA as an accountant for the Student Guild. She recalls the lovely grounds when visiting her father at Hackett Hall until the Guild Village was built. Mr Walter loved worked there. Annie expected to study at UWA after attending Claremont Demonstration Primary School and Hollywood High School. She was invited to attend Hollywood which was a special maths school. The school had a good relationship with UWA and the pupils went to some special classes in maths at UWA.
03:00 Annie enrolled at UWA in 1978. She had planned to be a journalist but studied Psychology and Anthropology in her first year. In second year she switched to English and English Literature and majored in English Literature. She also studied Economics and Italian. There was a lively Psychology lecturer who gave quite a performance in the Octagon Theatre. Peter Cohen was an English tutor. Annie played tennis and socialised on campus. She caught the bus to UWA and stayed the day. In third year she had only 7 hours of contact hours which enable her to work part-time. There was not much career counselling. She had planned to be a journalist but ended up using her writing skills in marketing and public affairs after graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in 1981.
09:08 It was not difficult to find work. She worked as a flight attendant for Ansett for a year which enabled her to see Australia. She returned to Perth to work for the Energy Commission for 5 years in public affairs. She wrote press releases and organised country shows. Then she worked as the Entertainment and Promotions Manager on Great Keppel Island, Queensland. She travelled around Queensland for about 5 months before returning to Perth and enrolling in an arts management course with WAPA. She got a job as trainee manager with the Perth Theatre Trust. After that, she worked as marketing manager at Underwater World in Hillarys (now AQWA). She started the first Whale Watch trips in Western Australia. By now, she was married and left when she was pregnant with her first child. Annie did some marketing work with the Perth Heat baseball team while she was raising her children.
15:08 When the children started school she and her husband Brett started to talk about starting a family foundation that would be community focussed. They started Fogarty Foundation in 2000 to give something back to the community. They realised how important education was and wanted to give opportunities to those who might not otherwise have them. The Fogarty Foundation started from the family home. Once they had an office premises Annie spent about a day a week working from there. Brett set up the vision and strategy for the Foundation and did the business investments.
17:55 They had a clear idea of where they were going but they did not want it to be an organisation that just gave out money. Education has been a good focus. Fogarty Round Tables are convened to bring groups together to share their resources. They had a very good accountant who helped them set up the structure. The Board of Trustees have skills that assist as well. After 4 years they took on a part-time Executive Officer. That role is now full-time.
20:09 Early initiatives were to talk to people in the community and find out where they could help. Annie was quite dismayed in the early years by some of the challenges that people faced. Their first project was a leadership programme working with the Health Department and ELDAG [Local Drug Action Group]. This programme went for 10 years.
22:11 Their first education programme was with the Education Faculty at UWA to encourage educators and they started a scholarship programme there - the Educational Excellence Scholarships. There were travel awards, prizes and scholarships for teachers to study for PhD and Masters degrees. There are about 10 programmes working in the community across a wide spectrum including supporting play groups in disadvantaged areas.
25:02 A lot of the programmes have a leadership focus. In 2004, the Foundation started the UWA Fogarty Foundation Scholarships party to encourage people from the regions to come and study in Perth. The scholarships also encourage students who might have been tempted to study elsewhere, to remain in Perth. The leadership programme is an integral part of this scholarship. The scholars meet and learn from leaders in the community. Bringing young people together has enabled scholar initiatives such as Teach Learn Grow where university students (not necessary education students) mentor rural WA primary students. The scholars set up their own student television WASTV. Fogarty Scholars established Profectus in 2013 to encourage Australian students to get involved in entrepreneurship and help them develop their ideas. They run a leadership conference for Year 10 students. This is the ripple effect in action. There is also a scholarship programme for teachers, the Fogarty Learning Centre, which supports Edith Cowan University to develop numeracy and literacy clinics. One of the latest initiatives is CoderDojo which teaches young people to programme computers. This began at UWA in 2013. It is hoped to run 12 regional programmes in 2014.
28:56 Students apply for the Fogarty Scholarship through UWA. They have to be high achievers but 50% of the emphasis is on academic ability and 50% on community involvement and leadership abilities. There are 54 scholars and 45 alumni. The Fogarty Foundation work will really come to fruition when the scholars are working in their various careers worldwide.
30:24 There haven’t been many disappointments or set-backs. The community sector is very open and generous in sharing knowledge and supporting each other. The education field is a dynamic area that produces good outcomes.
31:21 Each year they review their work. Annie has learnt that it is essential to reach out. She was thrilled by the help she received in the US when researching how to promote leadership in people with low socio economic backgrounds. If the Foundation cannot help a project financially they try to put people in contact with somebody who can assist them.
33:38 In regional WA support needs to be at a grass roots level so that they can carry on the programmes themselves. The Foundation does not put on a conference. They tend to work more on bringing people together for round table discussions in a particular area.
36:05 In the future technology is going to play more of a part in education. But how do you use it best?
37:41 Annie is happy that UWA is returning to a liberal arts undergraduate degree. It was very different in 1978. Now there is more online education at UWA. Annie feels that it is crucial to spend time on campus making contacts and connections. It is important to have lots of other experiences and not just a degree. There is a lot more emphasis now on students being involved in not for profit organisations i.e. Camp for Kids.
40:15 UWA presented both Annie and Brett with an honorary Doctorate of Letters in 2004. They are proud of their relationship with UWA. Annie is on the Senate Development Committee and the Capital Campaign Committee which looks at the development side of the university.
41:17 The Fogarty Leadership Programme organises a series of Conversations where leaders in the community speak to the scholars. There are four conversations during the year. At the beginning of the year a writer from the Perth International Writer’s Festival is invited to speak to the students. At the end of the year they hold the Remarkables which is where four of the scholars or alumni come and speak about their work.
42:49 The Trustees are generally friends and people who are involved and interested in the community. They have a broad range of expertise and backgrounds. The Board of Trustees is: Annie Fogarty AM; Bettina Mangam; Tony Dale; Caitlyn Fogarty; Gary Roberts and Emeritus Professor Bill Louden. Kathryn Clements the full-time Executive Officer graduated from UWA in 2011 with a Graduate Certificate in Social Impact. The Trustees have no set term of service.



Fogarty, Annie, “Annie Fogarty interview, 24 July 2014,” UWA Historical Society: UWA Histories, accessed July 13, 2024,