Farewell Louise Sims

Farewell Louise Sims
Friday 30 October 2020

The School of Demography farewelled Louise at Badger's on 29 October - after a remarkable and noteworthy career at ANU over the last 34 years. Louise has documented her ANU history below. She will be dearly missed by all in Demography and around ANU.

Louise’s ANU History

I started at the Department of Economics, RSSS on the 1 December 1986, Economics was then situated in the Coombs Building and I worked there for about 6 months filling in for a friend while she was on maternity leave.  Then in July 1987 I moved upstairs to start in the Department of Political Science, RSSS where I stayed for the next 12 years, I became the Departmental Secretary there from about 1989.  In 1991 former Prime Minister Bob Hawke was given an Honorary Fellowship in the Political Science Department after Paul Keating successfully challenged him for the leadership of the Labor Party.  Bob was given the office next to mine (my Dad thought this was just great as he was a staunch Labor man).  Bob only came into the Department a handful of times, but on one such occasion he asked if he could smoke his cigars in the office and jokingly I said only if he let me have a cigarette with him, and he did. So we sat in his office on the 2nd level of the Coombs building enjoying a smoke together while he also drank his non-alcoholic beer, he was such a down to earth man.  Gough Whitlam was also an Honorary Fellow in the Coombs Building back in 80’s, he used to come into the tea room and have a cuppa with some of the academics of that time.  I left the university in 1999 for a short period (under 6 months) then returned back to the Department of Political Science for another couple of years.  Then in 2002 I started working for the Australian Consortium for Social & Political Research (ACSPRI) which was part of the Australian Centre for Social Research (ACSR) helping with the running of their Summer Program (run at ANU) and their Winter Program (run at UQ, Brisbane).  ACSPRI was situated in one of the old cottages in Balmain Lane and was a beautiful old house (this was the first time that I was not working in the Coombs building and I loved it).  My Dad was the Assistant Business Manager for the Joint Schools RSSS and RSPacS. I had already spent most of my life in the Coombs Building (playing hide-an-seek as a little girl with my brothers).  I continued to work with ACSPRI for the next 5 years.  Also in this time, 2004-2009 I was the Production Assistant for the Australian Journal of Social Issues.  Then in 2009 the Journal was handed over to University of NSW and I started to work as the Administrator for the Australian Social Science Data Archive (ASSDA) now known as ADA.  I finished with them in March 2013 and moved over to the Australian Demographic & Social Research Institute (ADSRI) now known as the School of Demography.  This move saw me return to the Coombs Building once again.  I have wholeheartedly enjoyed my time in Demography and the ANU as a whole.  Over my 34 years at ANU I have worked with some remarkable people who have all helped shape the person that I am today.  It would take way too long to name you all but I am sure you know who you all are.


Updated:  30 October 2020/Responsible Officer:  Head of School/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications