Long serving Empire Theatre advocate Sheena Liley has been named as a recipient of the Order of Australia for her service to the community.
Mrs Liley was a founding trustee of the Empire Theatres Foundation and served as Chair of the Foundation Trustees for 9 years until she stepped down in 2019, assisting to facilitate more than 400 young people to develop their skills in the arts with the Youth Arts Bursary program as well as giving developing and established performers a boost in their disciplines via the Brian Boak Bursary.
Mrs Liley has also served as a Director on the Empire Theatres Board for more than 20 years, acting as Deputy Chair of the Board for the past 12 years, a role she holds to this day.
Mrs Liley said she was greatly honoured to be a recipient of the prestigious accolade.
"It feels a little odd to be singled out when I know so many people who already do so much for the community, and I don't see myself as better or different to those people," she said.
"There is a great tradition of volunteering in Toowoomba and certainly the Empire Theatres itself with the restoration and the institution it has become, has been done through the hard work of volunteers from the Restoration Committee right through to the Friends of the Empire."
"The performing arts are essential as a pointer to a healthy and vibrant community; Performing arts is food for the soul."
The Empire Theatres team extends our congratulations to Mrs Liley for this outstanding achievement and thanks her for her years of service and support