News You Can Use (NYCU) Profile

Lady Fran W

Fran was born in East Melbourne on the tenth floor of the Mercy Hospital. Dad was a surveyor/draftsman and mum in her final year of medicine at Melbourne Uni. She was alone for her first birthday as her parents were busy back at the Mercy delivering her birthday present; the first of what was to become four brothers over the next 12 years.


At age eight Fran was torn from her newly painted pink bedroom in Camberwell to move to a small farm at Bells Beach. Three months later the Ash Wednesday bushfires were finally brought under control in the front paddock. Country life was literally a trial by fire.


The remainder of her childhood consisted of playing in underground cubbies, tree houses, building billy-carts, swimming in dams, farm chores, horse riding, helping out with shearing and butchering, milking cows, seeing the country from a tent, holding the hand of a bleeding brother or few, and generally growing up with summers on the beach and winters by the fire with homemade bread. At the time she hated the country life where everyone else's grass always seemed greener. Now she realises just how green was her own grass.


Growing up in the country inevitably means moving to the city for university. Finally the life back in Melbourne she'd longed for since leaving the big smoke as a child. From there it was study, house sharing, and starting out in the workforce. After a traineeship working at La Trobe University a permanent position became available at the Royal Australian College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologist in 1995. It would seem she took the 'permanent' nature of the position literally. In Fran's 25 years at the College she has worked in training, assessments, for the Executive (now the Board), for the President, as Executive Officer for Vic/Tas, in Trainee Selection, in the office of the President and CEO, and back to training.


Today Fran carries the knowledge of a youth to parents who knew and loved their wine [home cellar - 1 and 2] and has developed a healthy snobbery towards the nectar of the gods. Second most to adopting Melbourne's tradition of coffee snobbery.


When not working Fran longs for travel; highlights of adventures with strangers while going solo across China; relishing the snow of a white Christmas in Canada; travelling by plane, train, and automobile from the west to east coast of the USA for Thanksgiving in Boston; braving the crossing of roads in Vietnam; attended to car accidents in Cambodia and jungle trekking; walking Hellfire Pass in Thailand; and, fending off a killer goose and soaking in the tropical paradise of the Gili Islands. The list goes on and the best is still to come.


Travel is just one of the examples evidencing Fran's desire to try everything; live it, taste it, feel it. She's exited a plane in flight (with a parachute), got a tattoo or two, eaten a scorpion (not a recommended fine dining experience), piloted a plane without an engine, delivered a lamb, been cuddled by a python, tried far too many rice wines of the Mekong Delta before lunch, skied the Rocky Mountains (okay, more akin to falling without style), had a white Christmas and a steamy sandy Easter, bought a home, fallen in and out of love, and become smitten with seven newborn nieces and nephews (not all at the same time).


Fran is a Google Trusted Tester and Local Guide, tinkers online, and has occasionally been known to pick up a camera. Her joy comes in showing people just how beautiful and fabulous they are in spite of their insecurities and self-consciousness [album - ].


Fran lives under the tyrannical rule of her cat Ansett; one of three kittens that were dumped in her carport while she was in Cambodia. Ansett's siblings were found other forever homes but Ansett decided she was quite comfortable where she was and stayed put.

Fran is now starting a new chapter of her life; after more than 50% of her life at RANZCOG she is setting her sites on the Victorian Public Service and hoping to use her skill and experience continuing to improve the world we live in in little piece at a time.


In between all the above Fran tries to live each day by her blood group; be positive (B+).                        



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On the boat