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Monday 29 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 eco-tourism and to aviation, as Co-Lease Holder and Managing Director of Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort, as a Board Member or member of significant ecotourism and conservation organisations, as Co-Owner and Chief Pilot of Seair Pacific and through membership of a national advisory group on regional aviation safety.



Commendation for Brave Conduct

In the morning of 1 March 2010, Warrant Officer Class Two (then Corporal) James Cottle went to the assistance of a woman after a motor vehicle accident at Kingsgrove in New South Wales.

At 6.30am, Corporal Cottle was driving his vehicle when he witnessed a two car accident at an intersection in Kingsgrove.

He quickly assessed the scene and immediately positioned his vehicle to provide protection to the cars involved. He grabbed a combat first aid kit from his vehicle and approached the worst affected car. He gained access to the interior of the badly damaged vehicle by climbing through the back, reaching the young female driver who appeared to be unconscious. 

He noticed the driver had suffered significant injuries to her head and commenced first aid. At this time, smoke started to enter the vehicle from the engine. He opened the rear window of the vehicle and asked a bystander to get a fire extinguisher from his car boot and start to spray the engine bay. As this happened, he continued to provide first aid treatment to the victim.

The fire was subsequently extinguished and he remained with the injured driver whilst heavy equipment was used by emergency services to free her.

For his actions, Warrant Officer Class Two Cottle is commended for brave conduct.



Medal of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For service to the multicultural community of Queensland, as President and Founding Member of the Queensland Multicultural Council, Vice-President of Radio 4EB, and as a senior office-holder in other State and international organisations and advisory groups supporting multiculturalism and the Indian-Australian community across sectors including business, the media and sport. 



Public Service Medal

For outstanding public service, as a senior intelligence analyst providing advice and expertise to support initiatives including the Sports Betting Integrity Unit within the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission and the Sports Integrity Threat Assessment Matrix, in order to protect Australian sport from the threat of match-fixing, corruption and criminal exploitation.



Bravery Medal

On 5 December 1998, Mr Matthew Hassen, then a Senior Constable, was involved in calming a civil disturbance event that included an armed offender at Cherbourg in Queensland.

In the early hours of the morning, Senior Constable Hassen and another police officer were on duty when they were notified of a disturbance involving a local family and a crowd of over 100 people in a nearby street. As the first police officers to arrive at the scene they saw the crowd of people was spread over a distance of some 40 metres, mostly in two groups. They identified some members of the crowd as earlier having an agitated confrontation with the officers.

Senior Constable Hassen's colleague exited the police vehicle while he alerted other colleagues to the situation via the police radio. The angry crowd began to hurl rocks and bottles towards the police vehicle. Senior Constable Hassen's colleague re-entered the police vehicle and the officers decided on a plan of action.

As the two groups of people yelled threats at each other, Senior Constable Hassen and the other officer got out of the police vehicle and each headed towards a different group. They both attempted to calm the groups and diffuse the hostile environment.

At this time, a man from one of the groups, armed with a shotgun, ran from the rear of a nearby house, loading the weapon as he ran. Without hesitation Senior Constable Hassen ran towards the armed offender who discharged the shotgun. He placed himself between the armed offender and the crowd and was then able to disarm the man and secure the shotgun inside the police vehicle.

A short while later, the same offender reappeared with a rifle and fired two shots towards the angry crowd. Senior Constable Hassen and another man tackled the offender to the ground and the rifle was removed and placed in the police vehicle. The offender was then moved to a nearby garage and away from the angry crowd.

During this time the other officer had been surrounded by the crowd and several people were jostling and pushing him about. A man then swung a punch to the rear of his head. Despite this, he remained calm and continued to reason with the hostile crowd in an attempt to prevent further violence. Other police officers then arrived on the scene and the decision was taken to withdraw for safety reasons. 

By his actions, Mr Hassen displayed considerable bravery.



Conspicuous Service Cross

For outstanding performance and achievement as the Commanding Officer of 25th/49th Battalion, the Royal Queensland Regiment and Commanding Officer of Battle Group CANNAN, through the application of exceptional leadership, commitment, initiative and judgement in the training, development and force generation of the largest Army Reserve Reinforcing Battle Group, resulting in a historically significant increase in the sustained capability generated by Army Reserve.



Member of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For significant service to the law, through the law firm Allens, and to the legal profession, through leadership positions in business entities and the Australian Mining and Petroleum Law Association, and committee and board roles of professional organisations including the Queensland Law Society, Law Council of Australia and International Bar Association.



Bravery Medal

On 23 July 2017, Mr Damond Gray apprehended an armed offender at Mount Warren Park in Queensland.

Mr Gray was at home at around 2pm when a family member informed him that an armed intruder was in the house. The man had walked through the house holding a knife and a loaded shotgun, before leaving through the back door. 

The family member followed the armed man, who had earlier pointed the firearm directly at her. She saw the man throw a bike over a neighbour's fence before leaving the site.

Mr Gray and the female family member immediately got into a car and began to drive through the streets in search of the man. They located him attempting to break into a parked vehicle. Mr Gray stopped his car alongside the armed man who pointed the shotgun directly at their windscreen. The offender then began to run and Mr Gray exited his vehicle and chased after him.

After a foot pursuit, Mr Gray caught up with the man and stood about a metre in front of him. The man was out of breath and puffing as he raised the gun and pointed it directly at Mr Gray.

Mr Gray was able to distract the offender by saying the police had arrived, and he was then able to grab the offender's weapon, breaking it in the process. He put the offender in a headlock, pulled him to the ground, and threw the shotgun to the side.

At this time the female family member reached the pair and Mr Gray instructed her to go and find his neighbour, who arrived on the scene and helped with restraining the offender. The men held the offender until police officers arrived at the scene.

By his actions, Mr Gray displayed considerable bravery.



Medal of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For service to rural and remote communities, as a committee member of the National Horse Trail, assisting in development of the trail from Cooktown in Queensland to Healesville in Victoria, and as author of five collections of stories gathered during his life as a drover, stockman, fencer, shearer and saddler.



Medal of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For service to the community of Queensland, through positions including chairman of the Queensland Justices Association, as a Justice of the Peace, as a director of the Southport Sub-Branch of the Returned and Service’s League of Australia, and through contributions to Touch Football Australia and the Australian Defence Veterans Party.



Member of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For significant service to youth, through Scouts Queensland in a wide range of leadership and training positions including Scout Leader, Trainer, District and Region Commissioner, Assistant Chief Commissioner, and Commissioner for Adult Training and Development, and to the community as a volunteer, including with Community Supporting Police.




Member of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For significant service to the tourism and hospitality sectors through private sector senior executive roles, and senior positions in tourism promotion boards and committees at national, regional and local levels including Voyages Indigenous Tourism Australia, Discovery Holiday Parks, Tourism Australia, and tourism organisations in Tasmania, the Northern Territory, and Queensland.



Officer of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For distinguished service to education and research in clinical psychology, and to child, parent and family, through academic and leadership roles at the University of Queensland and higher education institutions in the USA, UK and New Zealand, and contributions through research, consultancy, and membership of related committees, boards and professional associations.



Ambulance Service Medal

For diligent service and dedication to communities in Brisbane and the Gold Coast with the Queensland Ambulance Service and its predecessor organisation as a qualified paramedic, and in leadership and regional executive management positions, notably the successful management of large-scale incidents including the safe evacuation of 70 residents following the sudden closure of their nursing home in 2019.



Medal of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For service to thoroughbred horse racing, as Board Member and Chairman of the Brisbane Racing Club, and through roles with a range of related clubs, associations and enterprises, and to the community of Caboolture, through contributions to St Michael’s College, Caboolture Touch Association, Caboolture Sports Club, and other community organisations.



Officer of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For distinguished service to the people and Parliament of Queensland, particularly as 38th Premier of Queensland, Member for Ashgrove and Leader of the Liberal National Party of Queensland, and to local government as 15th Lord Mayor of Brisbane.



Member of the Order of Australia in the General Division

For significant service to the Jewish community of Queensland, through roles with the Executive Council of Australian Jewry, the Queensland Jewish Board of Deputies, the Brisbane Hebrew Congregation, and other Jewish and interfaith organisations, and to the law through, contributions as a barrister, mediator, manager and author of professional publications.



Member of the Order of Australia in the Military Division

For exceptional service and dedication in command and leadership throughout multiple Australian Defence Force postings in staff and command positions, and in operations including PHILIPPINES ASSIST, APEC ASSIST 2018, and ATLAS, re-establishing the effects as a driver in the conduct of joint operations, and significantly enhancing the operational capabilities of the ADF in fields such as the interoperability of communications and fires architecture. 



Group Bravery Citation

In the early evening of 29 May 2016, Dr Ashok Gangasandra Basavaraj, Mr Vishaak Gangasandra and other members of the public were involved in the rescue of a woman from a burning vehicle at Palm Beach in Queensland. Just after 6pm, a car travelling at high speed left the road near an intersection, leaving the road and crashing into a power pole. Debris was strewn over a large area as the vehicle was split in two and then caught alight.  A passer-by stopped her vehicle and ran to the wrecked car.  Other drivers then stopped to assist and they managed to pull the deployed airbags off the injured female driver. 

With fire coming through the windscreen and footwell, one person reached into the car and tried to pull the woman free, whilst another person supported the unresponsive driver. With flames getting more intense, a rescuer placed herself between the driver and the flames and manipulated the woman's arms and legs from underneath the steering wheel and the dashboard.  Shattered glass covered the driver and the five rescuers, including Dr Gangasandra Basavaraj and Mr Gangasandra, continued to manoeuvre her and the front seat until they were able to pull her from the vehicle.  The injured woman was moved away from the vehicle and her vital signs were checked by one of the rescuers who was a doctor.  Moments later the damaged vehicle erupted into flames.

For their actions, Dr Gangasandra Basavaraj and Mr Gangasandra are recognised by the award of the Group Bravery Citation.