Soroptimist International President Maureen Maguire today announced that " Past International President Hilary Page passed away this morning (14 July 2022)."
Members and friends from South East Asia Pacific send their condolences to the members of the Federation of Great Britain and Ireland and to Hilary's family.
Hilary was well known and loved in our Federation. Hilary was a great mentor and she did indeed encourage and motivate women.
I first met Hilary in 1996 at a conference, and she took the time to speak with a 'newbie' and encouraged me to learn more about Soroptimist the work we do., and to become more involved and this encouragement continued for some years.
Thank you Hilary for your years of service to women and girls through your involvement as a Soroptimist.
SISEAP President 2022-2024
Announcement from SI President Maureen Maguire
It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that I announce that Past International President Hilary Page passed away this morning (14 July 2022).
A Soroptimist for 50 years, Hilary held many positions serving at Club, Region, Federation, and International levels. She was Soroptimist International Great Britain and Ireland (SIGBI) Federation President from 1989 to 1990, and Soroptimist International President from 1997 to 1999. She was awarded honorary membership of SIGBI in 2011 in recognition of her contribution to the women’s movement and lifetime commitment to gender equality.
Hilary played a very active role in the international advocacy arena, serving on the National Committee of UNICEF and was instrumental in establishing GAPS (Gender Action for Peace and Security), an organisation that monitors the meaningful inclusion of genders in all aspects of the UK Government policy and practice on peace and security. She was awarded the MBE in 1991 in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for public and voluntary work.
Hilary’s career was as a Civil Servant, within the (then) Department of Employment where she chaired many committees, produced development plans and budgets, prepared briefing papers for Government Ministers, replied to Parliamentary Questions and participated in many national and international meetings. Her Senior Executive post within the Group Personnel Unit (Human Resources), involved the development and implementation of an Equal Opportunities Policy throughout the UK Civil Service, covering part time working, job-sharing, flexible working hours and childcare provision. She was responsible for the development of a confidential counselling service for staff, leading a team of 42 counsellors, including their training and development.
Hilary was intelligent, resolute and passionate on the issues surrounding women and girls, encouraging and motivating all who knew her. She was a valued mentor and friend to many Soroptimists including myself. Shaping mine and other members’ views on many issues with her knowledge, advice, insightful observations and perspectives; she saw the potential and talents in others and sought to develop and nurture it. (I will miss the many discussions over the telephone).
Hilary lived her life according to the Soroptimist Pledge:
I pledge allegiance to Soroptimist;
The ideals for which it stands;
The sincerity of friendship;
The integrity of profession;
The joy of achievement and
The love of all mankind.
Let us reflect on all the amazing work that she carried out and all the people that she impacted through her years of dedication to our organisation.
Hilary was a true Soroptimist.
President – Soroptimist International.
Reflections on the Life of Hilary Page
Hilary was a person one loved as soon as she was introduced to you. She was a mentor and always happy to help with advice and action if necessary.
Hilary was SI President (1997 – 1999) when I was Federation President (1998 -2000). It was interesting how she brought the four Federation Presidents together by having us meet with her during S I Board meetings and at the 1999 Convention. So much so that the four Federation Presidents became good friends and met in Perth after the 1999 Convention and had a wonderful time. We then stayed at each other’s places – on the Isle of Wight with Pam & her husband (SIGBI ) and Helene (SIE) Liege and kept in touch.
Hilary was also responsible for our first contact with Mongolia. It was when she was SI President and attending the CSW Meeting that Zana met her and talked about becoming a Soroptimist, Hilary introduced her to Indira from Malaysia who in turn referred her to me and that was the start of SI Mongolia.
Hilary always sent a note prior to each meeting I went to, wishing me well, it was full of courage and support and meant so much to me.
Hilary turned 90 on 3 June, she shared her life with all Soroptimists and made each one of us feel welcome. An incredible human being that will be missed and remembered fondly.
Past Federation President 1998-2000
Past International President 2007-2009
I sadly bid farewell to Hilary Page. She was a wonderful mentor, colleague and friend who preceded me as International President. I will never forget her kind guidance and support at Board meetings and all the exciting adventures we shared.
A brilliant Soroptimist light has been extinguished but she will live on in the memories of all who knew and loved her.
Jane Zimmerman MD AM
Past Federation President 1996-1998
Past International President 2000-2001