Gladys Elphick Biography
Gladys Elphick MBE was an Australian Aboriginal woman of Kaurna and Ngadjuri descent, best known as the founding president of the Council of Aboriginal Women of South Australia, which became the Aboriginal Council of South Australia in 1973. She was known to the community as Auntie Glad.
Today’s Google Doodle honours the late legendary Aunty Gladys Elphick. A proud Kaurna & Ngadjuri woman born on this day in 1904, ‘Aunty Glad’ was founding president of the Council of Aboriginal Women of SA & dedicated herself towards social justice in Australia. @GladysElphick pic.twitter.com/4M0KVRfFfi
— Kirstie Parker (@KirstieMParker) August 26, 2019
Gladys Elphick Quick Bio
27 August 1904
Adelaide, South Australia
|Died||19 January 1988 (aged 83)
Daw Park, South Australia
|Monuments||Plaque on Jubilee 150 Walkway
Gladys Elphick Park
|Residence||Point Pearce as a child|
|Other names||Gladys Hughes
|Organization||Council of Aboriginal Women of South Australia, which became the Aboriginal Council of South Australia|
|Spouse(s)||Walter Hughes (1922–37)
Frederick Elphick (1940–69)
|Children||Timothy and Alfred|
|Parent(s)||John Herbert Walters and Gertrude Adams|
|Awards||Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) (1971),
South Australian Aborigine of the Year (1984)
Gladys Elphick Age
She was 84 years old. She was born on 27 August 1904 and died on 19 January 1988.
Gladys Elphick Early life
Gladys Elphick was born Gladys Walters in Adelaide, South Australia, but was raised at the Point Pearce Mission on the Yorke Peninsula.
Today’s #GoogleDoodle in Australia celebrates the 115th birthday of Aboriginal community leader, Aunty Gladys Elphick – a pioneer of social justice for Indigenous and non-Indigenous women alike → https://t.co/ftNjR0U077 pic.twitter.com/jLOK8jnrK7
— Google Australia NZ (@googledownunder) August 27, 2019
Gladys Elphick Early Career
On leaving school at age twelve, she worked in Point Pearce’s dairy.
Gladys Elphick Married, Husbands
Elphick married Walter Hughes, a shearer, in 1922. After her husband’s death in 1937, Elphick moved to Adelaide, lived with her cousin Gladys O’Brien, and worked as a domestic. She married Frederick Elphick in 1940.
Gladys Elphick World War2
Elphick worked at the Islington Railway Workshops in Adelaide’s northern suburbs during World War II creating shells and other munitions.
Gladys Elphick Community work
An important South Australian is the Google doodle today – Gladys Elphick (1904-1988), Aboriginal community leader.
— Sarah Keenihan PhD (@sciencesarah) August 26, 2019
Elphick joined the Aborigines Advancement League of South Australia in the 1940s and became active in committee work with the League in the 1960s. In 1964, Elphick became the founding president of the Council of Aboriginal Women of South Australia, a role she served until 1973. The Council was active in campaigning for the 1967 Referendum. The Council became the Aboriginal Council of South Australia in 1973, and from then included men in its remit and governance.
Also in 1973, Elphick was involved in setting up the Aboriginal Community Centre, and served as its treasurer, and helped establish the College of Aboriginal Education in 1973. She co-founded the Aboriginal Medical Service of South Australia in 1977.
Gladys Elphick Awards and Honours
Today’s Google banner – Aunty Gladys Elphick! Legendary and inspiring blak woman from SA. Read up on her and the Council of Aboriginal Women of South Australia ??❤️? pic.twitter.com/31h4bcTA8B
— Treena Clark-O’Donoghue (@Treenaco) August 27, 2019
Gladys Elphick was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in 1971 in recognition of service to the Aboriginal community.
She was named South Australian Aborigine of the Year in 1984, during National Aborigines Week.
A plaque honouring Gladys Elphick and her work for the community is part of the Jubilee 150 Walkway, a series of 150 bronze plaques set into the footpath of North Terrace, Adelaide commemorating “a selection of people who had made a significant contribution to the community or gained national and international recognition for their work”.
An award has been named in her honour by the International Women’s Day Committee (South Australia). Presented since 2003, it is a Community Spirit Award Acknowledging Outstanding Aboriginal Women.
One of the parks in the Adelaide Park Lands has been named Gladys Elphick Park in her honour.
Gladys Elphick Google Doodle
Indigenous SA trailblazer Gladys Elphick centre of Google Doodle
She was named South Australian Aborigine of the Year in 1984, four years before she passed away in the Adelaide suburb of Daw Park.https://t.co/aoidNFEd8Z
— lynlinking (@lynlinking) August 27, 2019
Today’s Doodle celebrates Australian Aboriginal community leader Gladys Elphick, known as “Aunty Glad,” who dedicated herself towards social justice in Australia.
Born on this day in 1904 a proud Kaurna and Ngadjuri woman, she became the founding president of the Council of Aboriginal Women of South Australia, bringing about important social reforms. Despite leaving school at age 12, she was a tireless advocate for Indigenous and non-Indigenous women alike, inspiring many to stand up for their rights.
After the death of her first husband, Aunty Glad moved to Adelaide in 1939, supporting her two children. During the 1940s, she joined the Aborigines Advancement League of South Australia, the country’s first group for Aboriginal women. In the mid-1960s, she served on the activities committee supporting important initiatives such as opening a community center for adult education, medical, and legal services. Her efforts led to the establishment of many other institutions, including the College of Aboriginal Education and the Aboriginal Medical Service.
In 1971, Aunty was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire and named South Australian of the Year in 1984. Since 2003, the Gladys Elphick Award has been awarded to recognize Aboriginal women working to advance the status of Indigenous people through a wide range of mediums.