Honours and Awards within the Australian Honours System - Investiture Ceremony (Cairns) for Residents of Queensland
Kaye and I are delighted to be with you here in Cairns today on this very special day for our recipients, and their proud families, friends and colleagues. I at once acknowledge you all, including our official guests.
I also acknowledge the traditional custodians of these lands, with respect to their present and past Elders.
Investiture ceremonies stand at the Apex of the Governor’s role. It is important in our decentralised State that they not only occur in Brisbane. I am pleased that in the first 10 months of the governorship, I have also conducted the ceremonies in Townsville last year and now here in Cairns.
The Australian Honours and Awards are the pre-eminent way our country seeks to recognise outstanding achievement and service.
Today’s recipients have been invested into the Order of Australia; this marks their contributions as well and truly going ‘above and beyond’.
There is additional significance to today’s ceremony: all recipients have been involved in a meaningful way with the Family Responsibilities Commission – the 13 OAM recipients as Local Commissioners.
Theirs is a vital job. They strengthen the Commission’s capacity to work positively with their respective communities. They also support the Commission’s core work, fostering, as succinctly stated by the FRC’s vision: vibrant… communities that are responsible, healthy, safe and sustainable.
Kaye and I wholeheartedly congratulate our Local Commissioners, both in this Commissioner capacity, and through your efforts to enrich your communities, and indeed our State, more broadly. You are all helping to secure a brighter future for our State’s children, encouraging them to make full use of their abilities so that they may successfully walk in “both worlds”.
We have over the past few days met many wonderful and inspiring people in communities on ‘the tip’ of Cape York and on the islands of the Torres Strait successfully achieving just that – ensuring that our wonderfully diverse Indigenous heritage – tens of thousands of years old – continues to be of enormous contemporary relevance.
Over the last few days we have visited a number of schools: Injinoo Junior Campus outside Bamaga, Tagai State College on Thursday Island, and yesterday, Tagai State College on Masig Island. We were most impressed by the vibrancy of the students. For your role in contributing to the maintenance of that vibrancy through your work Commissioners, you are to be commended.
How appropriate then in all these circumstances that today is the first day of National Reconciliation Week twenty-fifteen.
Kaye and I very much look forward during this twenty-sixth governorship to visiting other parts of our Far North, including, I hope, Aurukun, Coen, Mossman Gorge and Hope Vale.
It remains for me to mention, collegiately and as Governor, former Magistrate and now FRC Commissioner David Glasgow. This signal honour is a firm and deserved nod to the care and concern you conspicuously demonstrate – and have demonstrated for many decades – towards your fellow North Queenslanders.
On behalf of all Queenslanders, Kaye and I sincerely thank you all, ladies and gentlemen, for your wonderful contributions.