A face many may have seen around Stawell has been fondly remembered by family and friends after her passing in September.
Joan Brilliant was remembered as an entrepreneurial spirit who demonstrated the value of integrity and honesty in her work, which saw her grace many parts of Stawell.
Mrs Brilliant passed away at Ballarat Base Hospital on September 2, 2021.
She was a dearly loved wife to Ian, loving mother and mother-in-law to Marc and Jess, and was a loved Grandma to Ava, Greta and Ruby.
In her years, Mrs Brilliant lived a full life, one that mixed work, family, new ventures and community all together.
Y-Zetts vice-president Meg Blake said she first met Mrs Brilliant in 1959 when they both attended Stawell High School together.
Mrs Blake recounts that Mrs Brilliant, was "an accomplished tennis and netball player and was a really social sort of person".
"When she left school she was initially employed as a telephonist at the Navarre Post Office," Mrs Blake said.
"Around 1970 she married Ian Brilliant and her next job was when she came into Stawell and she was employed at the McCracken's Garage in Main Street.
"She left there and was appointed fundraiser and public relations officer at the Stawell Hospital."
This is where Mrs Brilliant would complete some of her finest work, as she joined The Younger Set (now Y-Zetts) in June 1980.
Where she remained a member of the Hospital Foundation until her passing, with 42 years and three months of dedication and service.
During this time, Mrs Brilliant contributed as the secretary, treasurer and served a three-year stint as president between 1991 and 1994.
Mrs Blake and Mrs Brilliant formed a powerful team with the Y-Zetts, where they helped fundraise and advocate for the improvement of Stawell Regional Health's facilities.
"Honesty was the first thing. Integrity, honesty and accountability," she said.
"We hadn't had any funding for years and years and with Michael Delahunty a good board and local people it skyrocketed.
"We had a lot of fun together and there was a lot of genuine conscientious care to get the funds to do what we wanted to do.
"We really achieved a great deal and we have remained friends all that time."
In a tribute to her passing, Stawell Regional Health shared their condolences.
"It is with great sadness that we mark the passing of Joan Maree Brilliant," she said.
"Joan has been a long standing and staunch supporter of Stawell Regional Health having served on the Hospital Board of Management, serving as the President 1991 - 94, was a founding member of Foundation, current Trustee of the Foundation, a member of the Y-Zetts and a Life Governor of the Health Service.
"Thanks to her generous and long standing efforts Stawell Regional Health has grown and prospered as a health service to provide for the Stawell community.
"Sincere condolences to Joan's family, friends and former colleagues - her contribution and dedication will not be forgotten."
While serving as part of the Y-Zetts, Mrs Brilliant's entrepreneurial spirit did not waver.
She spent time from 1984 managing a fruit and vegetable shop next to the post office, Alan Fry's Milk Bar.
During 1993-95 she helped manage the Goodonya Sport retail store on Main Street.
Between 1992 and 2008, Mrs Brilliant was a manager of Kingston's Coach Tours, which was part of a large company which organised tours around Australia.
Following this role, she also spent time as the manager of the post office in Stawell between 2009 and 2016 before retiring.
Mrs Brilliant was also Life Member (1996) of the Warriors Football club (now the Stawell Warriors) where she served on the ladies committee and was treasurer for several years.
Mrs Blake said Mrs Brilliant was always active in the community and determined to make a difference.
"The Brilliant's had two businesses in Stawell and she was involved in many others, so she was quite entrepreneurial," she said.
"She grew up in Navarre and when she came to Stawell she took it on.
"She was never satisfied with second best. She was a very hard worker and very diligent and she always had to balance it, right down to the last five cents at the shop."
Vale Joan Brilliant.
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