Australia day brings with it not only a day for BBQ’s, beverages and the beach, but the acknowledgement of an impressive group of nominees selected for the Australian Of The Year title, bringing light to and recognizing upstanding Australian citizens.
This year, eight outstanding figures, each acclaimed for vastly different accomplishments in their respective fields, celebrate in unison their commitment to betterment and Australia as a nation.
Since 1960 Australia has celebrated the recognition of eminent citizens through the Australian Of The Year Awards. Here’s the 411 on our eight nominees for Australian Of The Year for 2016.
And our winner is….
David Morrison, ACT.
A globally recognized gender equality activist, has enforced his opinion openly in the armed forces. Morrison, formed Lieutenant- General ordered male troops to accept women as equal or “get out”, stating “On all operations, female soldiers and officers have proven themselves worthy of the best traditions of the Australian Army. They are vital to us, maintaining our capability now, and in to the future. If that does not suit you, then get out” Since then, the number of women joining the armed forces has grown exponentially.
Our runner ups included:
Catherine McGregor AM, Queensland.
Catherine McGregor AM is a member of the Australian Defense Force, has been nominated for raising ‘trans visibility’. McGregor took a stance in 2012 when she acknowledged herself as a women, and transitioned into womanhood. The high-profile transgender – former Army lieutenant Colonel and cricket writer – has remarkably influenced those suffering in silence and ridiculed for their transsexuality by bringing to the table and spreading the importance of ‘visibility matters’.
Elizabeth Broderick, NSW.
Working as Sex Discrimination Commissioner for the past eight years, Broderick has fought to break down the gender discrimination inequality prevalent in today’s society. She has fought to do so by pushing for more women to stand in decision-making positions and elevate the voice of women to break down existing social barriers. Broderick as established herself as a women of influence and is an adviser to the UN, the World Bank and NATO.
Girl power, we say!
Jane Hutchinson, Tasmania.
Hutchinson’s commitment to wildlife conservation has made remarkable impacts on Australian wildlife. Through her passionate commitment, the Tasmanian Land Conservancy has expanded to become worth a $30 million organisation that is responsible for the protection of 65,000 hectares of endangered habitat.
Anne Carey, Western Australia.
Australian Red Cross aid worker has been nominated for her commitment and bravery fighting Ebola in Africa. Carey who previously worked in Darfur, Sudan and in Papua New Guinea – worked in Sierra Leone to help treat the infected and set up Ebola treatment centers. The award has been nominated as the World Health Organisation has just declared Sierra Leone as Ebola free for the first time since its breakout in 2013.
Dr. John Greenwood, South Australia.
A doctor dedicated to helped burn victims with affordable skincare solutions, Greenwood has enhanced the lives of many globally since his commitment to developing skin substitute products based on a biodegradable polyurethane platform enabling the replacement of skin graft.
Julian McMahon, VIC.
Working to support national citizens abroad for over 13 years without payment, Barrister McMahon has been acknowledged for his commitment to representing Australian citizens in international capital punishment cases. Most recently recognized for his fight to protect members of the Bali Nine, McMahon has established himself as a leading voice in fighting the death penalty.
Will MacGregor, NT.
Now recognized for lending a hand to troubled youth, MacGregor overcame a toxic and life-threatening past of drugs and alcohol abuse. McGregor now runs a facility supporting young people experiencing the same struggles he endured in his earlier troubled years.