BENDIGO Citizen of the Year Penelope Davies has dedicated her achievement to her children.
Dr Davies was nominated for her work in the health and education sectors.
She was one of the founding members of Cystic Fibrosis Victoria in Bendigo nearly 40 years ago and served on the board for many years.
She said her children, both of whom had cystic fibrosis and have passed away, would be proud.
"I worked really hard to make sure families with children with cystic fibrosis didn't have the battles I had when my (children) were very young, I am talking more than 40 years ago," she said.
"I think walking in other people's shoes gives you the opportunity to see how perhaps you could make some of those journeys. It is a very difficult time for families.
"It's something that is not just in one phase, it goes up and down.
"Of course medical treatment for people with cystic fibrosis is in Melbourne, so that is a whole new ball game about accessing treatment, care, support and I felt there is a need there."
Dr Davies is a former member of the consumer advisory committees for the Royal Children's Hospital, St John of God Hospital and Bendigo Health Care Group.
She is also the Bendigo Tertiary Education Anniversary Committee board chair.
Dr Davies has been a student at La Trobe University in Bendigo for about 40 years and recently completed her doctorate.
She said everyone should have the chance to access a tertiary education.
"I feel the opportunity to study at home, to stay at home makes a difference as to whether a person will want a tertiary education," she said.
"I am not just talking about kids but mature-aged students as well.
"We are so lucky to have this institution in Bendigo and I just can't begin to tell you the sorts of things that the institution gives back to the community."