Nita May Dobbie established the Nita B Kibble Literary Awards for Women Writers in recognition of her aunt, Nita Bernice Kibble. Miss Kibble raised her from birth after her mother died and was also the first woman to be appointed a librarian with the State Library of New South Wales.
The first female librarian
In the late 1800s, Miss Kibble had successfully answered an advertisement for a junior assistant at the Public Library of New South Wales, when her signature was taken for a man's. She later became the first female librarian with the State Library of New South Wales and held the position of Principal Research Officer from 1919 until her retirement in 1943. Throughout her career she worked hard to raise the status of the library profession and was a founding member of the Australian Institute of Librarians.
Miss Dobbie followed her aunt into the library profession and recognised the need to foster women's writing in the community and so established the Awards through her will.
A lasting legacy
Since the inception of the Kibble Literary Awards in 1994, many of Australia's leading women writers have received prizes, each benefiting from Nita Dobbie's foresight and vision.
The trust behind the Awards was established with just under $400,000 and is managed by Perpetual. Today, it's worth more than $750,000 and has awarded close to $600,000 to writers.
Perpetual is one of Australia’s largest managers and distributors of philanthropic funds with $2.6 billion in charitable funds (as at 30 June 2017). Perpetual is trustee for approximately 1,000 charitable trusts and endowments and provides individuals and families with advice on establishing charitable foundations and structured giving programs. Perpetual also assists charities and not-for-profit organisations with investment advice and management.