Penny Wright is a lawyer, a mediator and the mother of three great kids aged 16, 19 and 21. She has a passion for community, our environment and justice. Throughout her employment as a solicitor, University lecturer and Deputy President of the Guardianship Board, Penny has worked to support vulnerable and disadvantaged people - in areas such as tenancy law, mental health, social security, refugees and violence against women and children.
Penny has also been active in promoting and protecting “public” institutions for the public good. She has worked and advocated for public education - as a parent and Governing Council chair, public transport (as an environmental and social justice issue) and public broadcasting (successfully heading up Friends of the ABC in SA from 1996 to 1999) to fight cuts to the ABC budget which threatened the loss of Radio National, Classic FM and JJJ.
Penny loves ideas, books and riding her bike. In May 2010, just before the election was announced, she was hit by a 4WD while riding home from gym. She spent 2 months in a wheelchair and a further month on crutches but has since worked hard on rehabilitation so she is fit to meet the challenges of her new job. This experience gave her a fresh gratitude for everyday things and a greater insight into the challenges of navigating life in a wheelchair. Penny now has a new bike (with a small motor to help her knee on steep hills) and is enjoying feeling the wind through her "helmet" again!
Passionate about fostering community and connections between people, Penny is keen to commence her term in the Senate and will bring experience, integrity and compassion to her role as a senator for South Australians.
Visit the Portfolios page to view the list of responsibilities Penny has in federal parliament.