International Women's Day Illawarra's annual luncheon will host Australian of the Year Grace Tame, organisers have announced.
Ms Tame was added to the list of remarkable women who will speak at this year's event on Friday, May 21, at WIN Entertainment Centre.
The theme for International Women's Day 2021 is Choose to Challenge.
Ms Tame received her Australian of the Year honour for her dedication to challenging outdated legislation that prevented victims of sexual assault from speaking out about their experiences.
A sexual abuse survivor herself, Ms Tame was relentless in her pursuit of the right to tell her story in her own words.
She has since used her position as Australian of the Year to speak out against sexual assault and sexual misconduct at all levels.
Chair of International Women's Day Illawarra, Vicki Tiegs, said organisers were beyond pleased to announce Ms Tame's presence at the event.
"We are absolutely thrilled Grace is coming to Wollongong," Ms Tiegs said.
"Her campaign to change the injustice of Tasmania's gag order that prevented survivors of sexual assault from self-identifying publicly has won her much acclaim.
"She is an extraordinary young woman who has left an indelible mark already on this country.
"Not just because she won the court order to speak about her assault under her own name, but for her resilience and relentless campaigning for justice with the #LetHerSpeak campaign.
"I have no doubt the Illawarra will welcome Grace with open arms and into their hearts when she joins us."
This year's luncheon was postponed to May, in the hopes that restrictions would ease enough to allow the usual large gathering.
To enable as many people as possible to hear Ms Tame speak, organisers have asked the NSW government to allow more attendees.
"Currently we are at capacity in the venue due to COVID restrictions with 768 people," Ms Tiegs said.
"We have applied for an exemption from the NSW government to allow more people to attend so as many people as possible can hear Grace's story.
"Hopefully the exemption is approved in time for us to meet the demand."
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