Carol was never one to back down from a challenge. As a 12 year old, when told she can't be a lifesaver because of her gender, she persisted.

She became the first female surf lifesaver in Victoria. She now has her eye on a place on the AFL Board.


Qualifications: Bachelor of Applied Science (Physical Education), 1985; Master of Arts, 1998
Job: Principal Executive Coach and owner of Carol Fox & Co. Confident Communication for Leaders, Chair/President of Women Sport Australia, Director and Principal Trainer at Life Performance Pty Ltd, Training Consultant at Country Fire Authority

“I can’t wait to be a lifesaver, Dad!" said Carol Fox who at the time was in Year 12 and eager to follow in her brother’s footsteps at Lorne Lifesaving Club.

Her father's response hit her like a ton of bricks: “Sweetie, you’re not allowed to, you’re a female.”
That was Carol’s first brush with inequality and it became a catalyst for her to question the status quo and find ways to make a positive impact for women.

Carol’s brother is dual Olympian and VU Alumnus John Fox and her sister Jo Fox, is an Olympic gold medallist in water polo. Growing up in a "can-do" environment, Carol has always had a positive attitude to achieve what she sets out to do.

Having completed a bachelor degree at Footscray Institute of Technology (FIT) and after an illustrious career in teaching, Carol returned to Victoria University of Technology (VUT) as a lecturer. Whilst teaching, she also studied Master in Arts (Human Movement) and her thesis title was 'Women's Perceived Barriers to Elite Coaching Positions in Australian Sport'.

Women in sport

Looking back, Carol is amazed that the issues of women in sport in 2017 have not changed much from when she was writing her assignments in 1982. She would like to see the day when we don’t comment on sport with the preface of "women's" or "men's".

Carol runs her own consultancy business providing training in effective communication based on her book, Be A Confident Communicator. She teaches women to be comfortable as a female and how to get their message across, particularly in male dominated industries. She is also the President of Women Sport Australia (WSA), which advocates for the progress and facilitation of opportunities for women and girls in and through sport.

A networker by nature, Carol has remained connected with most of her classmates, colleagues and industry connections from FIT. She regularly catches up with classmates Brigitte Duclos and Michael Roberts and is mentored by Dr Deidre Anderson.

Since discovering LinkedIn, Carol reconnected with many people from her course, including Campbell Rose AM who invited Carol to join the Hoadley Society, which works to help raise Victoria University’s profile in the community. Carol’s husband Mark Cera is also an alumnus, whom she met while lecturing at VUT.

In the end, Carol did become the first female surf lifesaver in Victoria. She now has her eye on a place on the AFL Board as she seeks to help cement women’s place in sport.

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