Ms Jilly Pilon has been announced as the Liberal candidate for the By-election in the Seat of Gosford.
Although she lives outside the electorate, Ms Pilon said she belonged to the Woy Woy branch of the Liberal Party, joining after she met the Branch President at an event in the Central Coast Car Museum, where Prime Minister, Mr Malcolm Turnbull, was speaking.
Ms Pilon said she was born in Gosford Hospital in 1970, attended Erina Heights Public School and Terrigal High School, and has called Wamberal (outside the electorate) home for most of her life.
She said her connections with the Gosford electorate were strong, even though she lived outside its boundaries.
When she left high school, Ms Pilon worked for the National Australia Bank for 12 years, including stints in the Umina and Woy Woy branches.
In 2015, Ms Pilon’s youngest son, Banjo, was killed when he was hit by a car on his skateboard.
“Obviously, the passing of Banjo changed all of our family’s lives for ever in many ways, we were able to donate Banjo’s organs and he was able to save six lives, including little babies, children and a grandmother,” she said,
“Community rallied behind us to put forward the idea of a skate park as a memorial for Banjo, but also to help keep kids off the street.
“Mick and I are still working with Council to finalise the skate park after we successfully lobbied to get bipartisan support for $500,000 federal funding for the project.”
Encouraging people to consider organ donation has become a passion for Ms Pilon and she has been invited to the 2017 donate life forum in Brisbane in May.
Her other son, 14-year-old Fletcher, won Australia’s Got Talent in 2016.
“We took Fletcher down to perform at State Parliament at an education presentation last year.
“Parliament was sitting and we went into question time, and we were quite shocked by the whole process, and my son said ‘Mum I think you should get involved’, and that was another little thing that led to this commitment.”
Ms Pilon was four days into her campaign when she spoke with Central Coast Newspapers. She said she would do her best to connect with as many people in the electorate as possible.
“I think at the moment, because it is just the first week, it is really about what the community wants from me, so I am connecting, door knocking, meeting with different businesses, making phone calls.”
Mar 16, 2017
Jilly Pilon, Liberal Candidate for Gosford By-election
Jackie Pearson, journalist