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Tuesday 30 June 2020

His Excellency the Honourable Paul de Jersey AC, Governor of Queensland, today presented Australian Honours and Awards to the following Queenslanders:





Medal of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For service to the Indigenous community of Goondiwindi, as Community Justice Group Coordinator, as representative of the Bigambul People, Goondiwindi Regional Council, as owner and founder of Cre8tive Mix promoting contemporary indigenous art, and as an educator in Indigenous visual arts, natural resource management and culture.



Commendation for Brave Conduct

On 16 February 2018, Mrs Kerry Seymour rescued a woman from dangerous surf at Alexandra Headlands Beach in Queensland.

At about 3pm on the day, Mrs Seymour and a friend were paddling in shallow water at a beach on the Sunshine Coast when, without warning, both women were swept into deep, rough water.

Mrs Seymour was swept further out than her friend but was able, with much effort, to make her way back to the safety of the beach. The other woman was in difficulty in the rough swell and became unconscious.

From the beach, Mrs Seymour saw her friend floating face down in the water and, despite her exhaustion and the dangerous water conditions, she quickly re-entered the surf and swam out to the woman. On reaching her, she managed to swim her back to the safety of the beach where she immediately began first aid procedures on the unconscious woman.

Soon after, surf lifesavers came to her assistance and the woman was taken to hospital by ambulance officers.

For her actions, Mrs Seymour is commended for brave conduct.



Commendation for Distinguished Service

For distinguished performance as the Force Protection Section Commander of the Train Advise Assist Command - Air mission in Afghanistan, demonstrating exemplary leadership, superior decision-making and dedication to duty in a dynamic and complex threat environment in ensuring the safety of the Australian advisor team in the course of their successful contribution to the mission on Operation HIGHROAD.



Medal of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For service to the community, through the Alumni Friends of the University of Queensland, as a member of University of Queensland Senate standing committees and as Warden of Convocation, and as a member of the Rotary Club of South Brisbane; and to dentistry, including through positions with the Australian Dental Association (Queensland).



Group Bravery Citation

In the early hours of 31 March 2017, members of the Queensland State Emergency Service and Mr Fouras were involved in the rescue of a family stranded in floodwaters following Cyclone Debbie in Queensland.

State Emergency Services (SES) in Luscombe were requested to go to the assistance of three people stranded on the roof of their home following the destructive effects of Cyclone Debbie. Three SES volunteers prepared a boat and set off in the dark, in water that was strong flowing and rising rapidly.

Despite floating debris, the trio continued upstream, often being required to duck to avoid damaged powerlines. They came upon a small group of people, one of whom offered assistance and he was subsequently briefed as the group of four continued upstream.

When the boat was approximately 150 metres from the stranded family on the rooftop, a group of locals assisted in manoeuvring the boat through the shallow water to a deeper part of the river. At this point another person replaced one of the people in the boat, and it continued upstream over submerged fence lines and trees. The family on the roof of the house were sighted and after a quick reconnaissance of the scene, the boat was manoeuvred alongside the house, near a balcony.

With the floodwater continuing to rage, the boat was secured and one of the SES members jumped over a railing and onto a balcony. He spoke with an older man who informed him that the other family members were on the roof.  Flood water was rising higher as the SES volunteer climbed out over the balcony and then crawled on his hands and knees along an awning until he located a woman and two children.

The three were individually brought along the awning and another SES volunteer assisted them onto the balcony. The children were then fitted with life jackets and helped aboard the boat. The older man refused to leave without his dogs so it was agreed that the dogs would also be evacuated.

The boat then set off into the swift flowing water and encountered large trees and debris as it fought the currents. On reaching a safe site, other members of the public helped to secure the boat to a power pole and the family was then able to disembark.

Soon after the house was dislodged from its foundations by the water and was pushed down the river, coming into contact with other houses, trees and power poles.

For his actions, Mr Fouras is recognised by the award of the Group Bravery Citation.



Medal of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For service to conservation and the environment, in curatorial and research roles at the Queensland Museum, research and technical positions at the Australian Museum, editorial roles, and a range of positions with Biodiversity Assessment and Management, the Environmental Institute of Australia and New Zealand, Southern Cross University and Sydney University.



Medal of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For service to community history, as creator and webmaster of the World War II military history website, ‘Australia@War’, as a public speaker for Returned and Services League of Australia branches and community groups about World War II in Australia, and as an author of ebooks about Australia’s role in the War.



Group Bravery Citation

On the 22 December 2015, two Queensland Police Officers, including Senior Constable Cook, were confronted by an armed man at Gracemere in Queensland.

Both Officers were responding to a disturbance in Gracemere when they were informed the offender, who was possibly armed, was attempting to gain entry to a residence. On arriving at the residence, they stopped their police vehicle past the house to create some cover.

The Officers saw the offender standing at the front of the premises holding a rifle which he was pointing upwards. They got out of the police vehicle and approached the man with their weapons drawn, issuing verbal warnings for him to drop the gun.

The offender ran towards the front door of the house and began to bang violently on the door and yell at the occupants. One Officer quickly moved up the driveway and used a parked car as cover before walking directly towards the door area.

At that time the armed offender came out from behind a pillar and walked towards the Officer with his rifle pointed directly at him. The man was crouching slightly and looking through the scope of the rifle.

The Officer fired a string of shots at the offender who then dropped the rifle. The Officer then provided cover for his colleague who had holstered his firearm and approached the injured offender. Both officers then restrained the offender until other emergency services arrived.

For his actions, Senior Constable Cook is recognised with the award of the Group Bravery Citation.



Member of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For significant service to medicine, as a clinical haematologist and founding director of ICON Cancer Centre, and as a medical officer and senior medical practitioner at the Wesley Hospital, and to charitable initiatives through major gifts to Queensland art collections and leadership roles within Alumni Friends of University of Queensland.



Member of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For significant service to the mining and minerals sectors, as a director or chairman of a range of companies and organisations, including the University of Queensland Holdings Group, and to business through senior management roles within MIM Holdings and chairmanship of the governing bodies of a range of educational entities.



Medal of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For service to the performing arts, as General Manager Gold Coast Eisteddfod, as Founder of Tropicarnival, the Gold Coast’s first ever festival, and as a Board Member of the Arts Centre, Gold Coast.



Public Service Medal

For outstanding public service through leading engagement with communities affected by PFAS contamination from legacy Defence firefighting activities, including as the human link between the community and Defence, advocating for the local community and assisting residents to access existing government support programs, and developing strategies to address mental health and wellbeing needs of affected communities.





Officers of the Order of Australia in the General Division


For distinguished international service to the community of the Democratic Republic of Congo through medical support, teaching and training roles including Director, HEAL Africa Partnership, co-founder and Director of the AusHEAL Charity, Executive Director AusHEAL Congo Project, founder SURGICALIFE, and in programs providing medical care in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania.


For distinguished international service to the community of the Democratic Republic of Congo through medical support, teaching and training roles including as co-founder, Management Member and Team Coordinator of the AusHEAL charity, Coordinator AusHEAL Congo project and in roles with the HEAL Africa Hospital in Goma and the HEAL Africa Training Service.



Medal of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For service to rugby union, as founder and member of the Caboolture Rugby Union Club, serving variously as coach, secretary, president and championship manager, and as a member, volunteer and chairman of the Caboolture Sports Club, and in other rugby-related roles.



Member of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For significant service to the law, through roles as a lawyer, commissioner and consultant; to legal organisations, particularly the Queensland Law Society; and to the community, through roles in many organisations including Council member for the University of Southern Queensland and Treasurer for the Royal Agricultural Society of Queensland.



Medal of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For service to the performing arts in Queensland, as a writer, actor, director, author, editor and journalist, including as a playwright of works for children and adults, as a reviewer of theatre, ballet and opera, and as a fundraiser for the Actors and Entertainers Benevolent Fund Queensland.





Medals of the Order of Australia in the General Division


For service to primary industry, through the Queensland Grain Growers Association, as a member or chairman of various district and state councils and committees, and as a board member of Grainco, and to the community through Beauaraba Living, Brookstead Hall, the Pittsworth ambulance brigade and the Anglican Church of Australia.


For service to the community of Pittsworth, through leadership positions in the auxiliary supporting Beauaraba Living and its predecessor, the Pittsworth and District Hospital Auxiliary Friendly Society, and through membership of the Brookstead Branch of the Country Women’s Association of Australia, and volunteering. 



Member of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For significant service to aviation safety in multiple senior roles in air safety and professional air pilots’ organisations including as Chairman, Safeskies Australia; Chairman, Honourable Company of Air Pilots Australia; Vice-President, Australian and International Pilots’ Association; and as a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society.