Women on Boards
Women on Boards
Apr 9, 2021
Defying All Odds: Increasing female tradies, smashing assumptions and leading with courage
Play • 15 min

Hacia Atherton has defeated all odds. In this episode of In Conversation with Claire Braund, Hacia tells how she was crushed by her 600kg horse in 2017 when training to qualify for the World Equestrian Games. Doctors said she’d never walk, let alone ride again, but four years and 14 operations on, Hacia is more than walking — she’s inspiring others with her story of turning trauma into triumph as a keynote speaker and courage coach.

While in recovery, Hacia became a qualified Certified Public Accountant (CPA). She’s also the Chief Commercial Officer for her family’s business, Atherton, which has been in operation for over 130 years and is a world leader in manufacturing sterilisation and infection control equipment. A passionate advocate for increased female participation in skilled trades, Hacia established the not-for-profit Empowered Women In Trades in November 2020 because Atherton could never find female tradies. Her aim is to facilitate cultural change, safely improve workplace psychology and to educate women about the opportunities available across the 62 skilled trades in Australia.

If that’s not impressive enough, she’s also a Committee Member for the CPA Australia Emerging Leaders Network to guide the career development of young business professionals and serves as an Advisory Board Member for Real Time Learning Australia, following WOB’s Women in Leadership Program, which she attests, gave her the clarity on the direction of her career.

Hacia is one to watch as she continues to conquer her fears and empower women to smash stereotypes and raise the bar.


LinkedIn: Hacia Atherton | Claire Braund (host)

Further Information about Women on Boards (WOB)

  • membership, events & services, please visit our website.
  • to receive our weekly newsletter, subscribe to WOB as a Basic Member (free).
  • join as a Full Member for full access to our Board Vacancies, WOBShare (our online member platform) and more.

Follow us on LinkedInFacebook and Twitter

More episodes
Clear search
Close search
Google apps
Main menu