It’s been a tough and frustrating year at the Canberra Raiders for coach Ricky Stuart, but being named in today’s 2021 Queen’s Birthday Honours list may sweeten the pain of his team languishing in the bottom half of the NRL table.
Dual international Stuart has been named a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for his significant service to rugby league and to the community, acknowledging his work supporting parents who, like him, have a child with autism, and raising funds to build facilities and homes for people with a disability.
He founded the Ricky Stuart Foundation, of which he remains chair, in 2011, then Ricky Stuart House in 2016, and Emma Ruby House in 2018.
Mr Stuart is one of many Canberra region residents recognised in the annual honours list.
Paediatrician and 2019 Senior Australian of the Year, Dr Sue Packer, was made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for distinguished service to children through roles in health, welfare and protection initiatives.
She is a director of Families Australia and the National Association for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect, and has served on numerous boards and committees.
The woman who has guided much of the cultural life of Canberra, Harriet Elvin, was recognised with an AM for significant service to arts administration in the ACT and to the community.
Ms Elvin recently announced she is moving on from her role as chief of the Cultural Facilities Corporation, which she has led since its inception in 1997.
The ACT Government body manages the Canberra Theatre Centre, the Canberra Museum and Gallery and three historic places: Lanyon, Calthorpes’ House and Mugga-Mugga.
A big contributor to Canberra’s local history appreciation, Dawn Waterhouse, was recognised with a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for service to community history.
Ninety-seven year-old Ms Waterhouse grew up in Calthorpes’ House in Red Hill, which is now one of the ACT’s historic places and where she continues to be involved.
In 2006, the ACT Heritage Council declared her a Local Treasure.
A stalwart of the Deakin community and Honorary Professor at the ANU’s Fenner School of Environment and Society, Dr George Wilson was awarded an AM for significant service to wildlife conservation, to veterinary science, and to the community.
Pioneering Australian rules football coach Bec Goddard’s service to the game and to women in sport has been rewarded with an OAM.
She coached the Adelaide Crows to the first AFLW flag in 2017 and was also assistant coach to the Canberra Capitals basketball team, which won the 2019 WNBL championship.
Also receiving an OAM is 2019 ACT Young Australian of the Year, Queanbeyan’s Hannah Wandel, who is recognised for service to women’s affairs and the community.
The founder of Country to Canberra, which empowers young rural women, Ms Wandel is a driving force in rural affairs, advising government and being involved in drought and flood relief.
The musical lifeblood of St Christopher’s Cathedral in Manuka, Mary Neilsen has also received an OAM for service to the community as a church organist. She has played the organ at St Christopher’s for 50 years.
Also recognised for her musical contribution is the lead carillonist at the National Carillon, Lyne Fuller.
Author and anthropologist, ANU Emeritus Professor Diane Bell, received an OAM for service to literature. Much of her work has been to do with the lives and history of Indigenous Australians, particularly women.
The outgoing head of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Frances Adamson, received the top honour of Companion of the Order of Australia (AC) for eminent service to public administration.
Governor-General David Hurley said this year’s list is intentionally diverse, with examples of exceptional achievement in almost every field imaginable.
“I am pleased this list includes the highest ever percentage of women [44 per cent] recognised through the General Division of the Order of Australia,” he said.
“It is important the Order of Australia represents the diversity and strength of Australia. For this to happen, we need to ensure outstanding women, members of our multicultural community and First Nations people are nominated by their peers in the community.”
Governor-General Hurley said he is prioritising increasing awareness of, and engagement with, the Order of Australia among groups that have been historically underrepresented.
“We are seeing positive progress and I am determined that it continues,” he said.
The list also includes 63 Australians recognised for their contribution in support of Australia’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Canberra region recipients are:
Companion in the Order of Australia (AC)
For eminent service to public administration through the advancement of Australia’s diplomatic, trade and cultural interests, particularly with the People’s Republic of China and the Indo-Pacific region, to innovative foreign policy development and high-level program delivery, and as the 36th Governor appointed in South Australia.
Emeritus Professor Kurt Lambeck AO, Hughes, ACT
For eminent service to science, particularly to geophysics and geodesy, through research roles at the national and international level, to professional scientific organisations, and to education.
Member of the Order of Australia (AM)
Dr Brian Keith Babington, Yarralumla, ACT
For significant service to children through safety and wellbeing initiatives.
Michael Ronald Brennan, Campbell, ACT
For significant service to the law and to community organisations.
Stephanie Copus-Campbell, Campbell, ACT
For significant service to aid and development initiatives in Papua New Guinea.
Professor Lawrence Edward Cram, Forrest, ACT
For significant service to tertiary education, and to astronomy and astrophysics.
Julian Hillary Cribb, Franklin, ACT
For significant service to science communication.
Harriet Claire Elvin, Forrest, ACT
For significant service to arts administration in the ACT and to the community.
Ricky Stuart, ACT
For significant service to rugby league and to the community.
Joan Warhurst, Reid, ACT
For significant service to education, and to research and curriculum development.
Dr George Wilson, Deakin, ACT
For significant service to wildlife conservation, to veterinary science and to the community.
Robert David Yallop, Hall, ACT
For significant service to international humanitarian aid organisations.
Professor Peter Shane Yu, ACT
For significant service to the community, particularly to Indigenous cultural and political organisations.
Officer of the Order of Australia (AO)
Dr Evans Lagudah, Ngunnawal, ACT
For distinguished service to agriculture and food science as a researcher in the area of wheat genetics.
Dr Suzanne Mary Packer AM, Lyons, ACT
For distinguished service to children through roles in health, welfare and protection initiatives.
Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM)
Les Barclay, Weston, ACT
For service to swimming.
Emeritus Professor Diane Robin Bell, ACT
For service to literature.
Jean Isabel Bennett, Cook, ACT
For service to the community of Canberra.
Dr Craig Cormick, ACT
For service to science and to the community.
Lyn Fuller, Googong, NSW
For service to music.
Rebecca Anne Goddard
For service to Australian rules football, and to women in sport.
Roxanne Marsha Missingham, Kambah, ACT
For service to the library and information sciences.
Mary Anne Neilsen, Red Hill, ACT
For service to the community as a church organist.
Dr David Peter O’Rourke, Garran, ACT
For service to medicine, and to the international community of West Timor.
Robyn Lee Porter, ACT
For service to science and the community.
James Archibald Rice, Monash, ACT
For service to the community through social welfare organisations.
Jennifer Dingena Tarrant, Curtin, ACT
For service to the hair industry and to humanitarian initiatives.
Hannah Louise Wandel, Queanbeyan, NSW
For service to women’s affairs, and the community.
Gwenyth Doreen Warmington, Yass, NSW
For service to the community of Yass.
Brian Norman Warren, Goulburn, NSW
For service to veterans.
Allison Dawn Waterhouse, Deakin, ACT
For service to community history.
John Suthern Williams, Cooma, NSW
For service to the merino wool industry.
Rosslyn Joy Williams, Holder, ACT
For service to community health.
Brett Yeats, Yarralumla, ACT
For service to the community of the ACT.