Today we say farewell to Judy Milligan, an extraordinary woman who dedicated so much of her time and commitment to the Liberal Party. Judy was a long-serving member of the Mitcham-Heatherdale branch and enshrined the values of the Liberal Party in who she was and what she did — values like individual freedoms, reward for effort and supporting the vulnerable. Only a few weeks ago Judy dropped into my office a handbag full of essential items so a woman in crisis might have something special this Christmas.
Judy married the love of her life, Barrie, and was a cherished mum to Julie and David. Her love for her family was so evident and she would capture those moments, popping them up on Facebook for all to see. These included special times with her adored grandchildren Kirsten, Lachlan, Lauren, Nathan, Luke and Demi.
I recall so fondly the years of support from Judy. The Mitcham election campaign was a huge challenge for us to win the seat from our opponents after 13 years, and she worked so hard alongside me. I remember how Judy would meet me at my listening posts. She would be the first one there and then she would go ahead of me every half-hour, setting up the next one down the road. She would be with me at the coffee and chats, just quietly encouraging me. Judy and Barrie were here in Parliament in the gallery in 2010 when I was sworn in. It was a treasured moment, the first day in this house when my political career began, and they were so much a part of it. The Liberal Party and the Ringwood electorate conference have lost a gem in Judy. Farewell, Judy Milligan. We will miss you.