|Lord Mayor of Darwin|
May 1975 – May 1980
|Preceded by||Harold "Tiger" Brennan|
|Succeeded by||Cecil Black|
Ellen Mary Stack
4 May 1929
|Died||19 May 2023 (aged 94)|
Ellen Mary Stack
Stack was born in Sydney on 4 May 1929, the daughter of William and Elizabeth Stack. She attended Brigidine Convent in Randwick and went on to study piano at the Conservatorium of Music in Sydney.
Stack graduated in 1956 with a
After her time as Lord Mayor of Darwin, she completed a Masters of Public Health from the University of Sydney. She then returned to Darwin, becoming the first Assistant Secretary of the Division of Aboriginal Health at the Department of Health of the Northern Territory. She became the Chief Medical Officer of the Northern Territory in 1987. Stack was instrumental in the establishment of Menzies School of Health in 1985.
Stack wrote about and commented publicly on public health and community issues such as abortion and women's rights.
Cyclone Tracy and life in Darwin
After moving to Darwin in 1961, Stack became increasingly interested in politics. She was elected to the
Stack and her family survived Cyclone Tracy, despite the destruction of their house. Stack decided not to be evacuated from Darwin, instead running an emergency clinic at Darwin High School, which became the main shelter and evacuation centre after the cyclone. She was responsible for the health care of 11,000 people who passed through the centre. "Not only did I look after the people that came in, but also people came and lived here," she said. "They brought their sodden old mattresses with them... I used to do a ward round every day and call them the sodden mattress lot."
Stack was pivotal in establishing the Darwin Disaster Welfare Council, that would later become the Northern Territory Women's Advisory Council. Stack became involved in reconstruction efforts. She was elected mayor of the City of Darwin in May 1975 and automatically became a member of the Darwin Reconstruction Commission.
Stack was re-elected Mayor of Darwin on 30 April 1978. Stack became the first Lord Mayor of Darwin in 1979 when it became a capital city. She was the first female Lord Mayor of an Australian capital city. Stack was made Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1979 for services rendered to the people of Darwin following the cyclone.
Stack resigned as Lord Mayor in May 1980 to run for the Country Liberal Party as candidate in the seat of Fannie Bay in the June 1980 Northern Territory election. She lost to the incumbent, Pam O'Neil.
In 1985, Stack served as the Northern Territory representative on the first National Australia Day Council.
In 1989, Stack acted as the chief medical officer of the Northern Territory.
Personal life and death
In 1957, Stack married Thomas Lawler, an agricultural scientist. Together they had three sons.
Stack died in Canberra on 19 May 2023, at age 94.
- ^ ISBN 978-0-9804578-1-0.
- ^ a b c d "Stack, Ellen Mary". sydney.edu.au. University of Sydney. Faculty of Medicine Online Museum and Archive. Retrieved 22 July 2016.
- hdl:10070/218089. Retrieved 22 July 2016.
- ^ "Dr Ella Stack". Charles Darwin University. Charles Darwin University. Retrieved 22 July 2016.
- ^ Purtil, James (23 December 2014). "Cyclone Tracy: Dr Ella Stack recalls the high school that became a front-line emergency clinic". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 22 July 2016.
- ^ "Stack Darwin mayor again". The Canberra Times. Vol. 52, no. 15, 573. Australian Capital Territory, Australia. 10 May 1978. p. 6. Retrieved 22 July 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
- ^ "Northern Territory Independent may get balance of power". The Canberra Times. Vol. 54, no. 16, 316. Australian Capital Territory, Australia. 28 May 1980. p. 14. Retrieved 22 July 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
- ^ "Mayor to stand". The Canberra Times. Vol. 53, no. 16, 032. Australian Capital Territory, Australia. 16 August 1979. p. 3. Retrieved 22 July 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
- ^ "Government-holds lead in NT poll counting". The Canberra Times. Vol. 54, no. 16, 328. Australian Capital Territory, Australia. 9 June 1980. p. 3. Retrieved 22 July 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
- ^ "Newcombe to head new council". The Canberra Times. Vol. 59, no. 18, 017. Australian Capital Territory, Australia. 26 January 1985. p. 23. Retrieved 22 July 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
- ^ a b Baird, Robert (22 May 2023). "Dr Ella Stack, mayor who guided Darwin through Cyclone Tracy aftermath, dies aged 94". ABC News. Retrieved 22 May 2023.
- ^ Jean, Peter (3 February 2011). "Mayor governed a 'heap of rubble'". Fairfax Media. Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 22 July 2016.
- ^ "Darwin's first female Lord Mayor Ella Stack has died at 94". Northern Territory News. Retrieved 22 May 2023.
- Ella Stack's Manuscripts at Northern Territory Library.
- Stack, Ellen (Ella) (1929–) at The Encyclopedia of Women and Leadership in Twentieth-Century Australia
- 1929 births
- 2023 deaths
- Mayors and Lord Mayors of Darwin
- Australian public health doctors
- Australian Commanders of the Order of the British Empire
- University of Sydney alumni
- Sydney Medical School alumni
- Northern Territory local councillors
- Cyclone Tracy
- Women local councillors in Australia
- Women mayors of places in the Northern Territory
- Medical doctors from Sydney
- Politicians from Sydney
- Women public health doctors