At the SGLBA’s recent AGM, Kate Semken was nominated and accepted as a life member of the Association. Life members are recognised for their contribution and dedication to the SGLBA, and service to the community through their role.

Semken was nominated by a number of existing life members for her successful rejuvenation of Lemons with a Twist, the SGLBA’s monthly women’s social and networking event.

At the time Semken became director for Lemons, the SGLBA had been struggling to find a person to take on this task. Lemons was reduced to 20 or so attendees per month and the event was not being given the attention it required to drive it forward.

The board approached Semken to assist with Lemons and she enthusiastically took up the role. This enthusiasm included organising gatherings in people’s homes in Leichhardt, Dulwich Hill and Enmore, and regularly leaflet-dropping to women in the Bank Hotel and the Sly Fox.

Due to her perseverance and skill, Semken built up regular attendances in excess of 100 while still at the Oxford Hotel. Quickly outgrowing that venue, Semken successfully engineered the Lemons move to Slide that began a long and fruitful association between the SGLBA and Slide, as well as raising the quality of the function.

It was at Slide and with a beefed-up marketing campaign designed by Kate that attendance at Lemons with a Twist boomed to a consistent 300 and, on occasions, 350 – 400 women and their male friends.

Today, Lemons is still held at Slide and remains a vital and fruitful event as well as providing space for businesswomen to meet and mingle. It is under the stewardship of Kate Semken, and later Mary Shalala, that Lemons became and has remained Sydney’s premier professional women’s event for the LGBTQI community.

INFO: The next Lemons with a Twist will be a special Birthday Lemons celebration held on October 7 at Slide. For information about Lemons with A Twist, visit the group page on Facebook or email lemons@sglba.com.au

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