The 2023 Queensland Greats Awards
Premier of Queensland and Minister for the Olympic and Paralympic Games, the Honourable Anastacia Palaszczuk MP; Ministers and Shadow Ministers; Members of Parliament, Directors-General; Queensland Greats, your families and friends; distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen.
I would also like to acknowledge the original custodians of the lands around Brisbane, the Turrbal and Jagera people, and extend my respects to Elders, past, present and emerging, including all First Nations people here this evening.
Graeme and I are delighted to join you to celebrate the Queensland Greats Awards on the day we celebrate the unique culture and heritage of our State.
Today marks 164 years since Queensland's official separation from New South Wales as an independent colony in 1859.
The announcement of independence was a triumph for our early settlers – not only did the sixth of June mark the official birth of Queensland as a separate colony, but, by extension, some 40 years later, it identified Queensland as one of the six foundation States of the Commonwealth of Australia.
The significance of this change is appreciated in modern times largely thanks to our observance of Queensland Day, with its full week of activities and celebrations planned in every corner of this vast, diverse and thoroughly magnificent State.
Diversity has long been a feature of the Queensland Greats Awards.
Awardees can come from all sectors, ranging from education to the arts, sport, health and business, the law and public service.
Institutions and organisations that have made significant contributions to our community have been recognised, too.
And the remarkable individuals who have been honoured previously as Queensland Greats demonstrate the significant contributions to our State by people of all cultures, including our First Nations people.
And so I turn to you, our newest Queensland Greats, and the impact you have had in shaping our great State with your individual and collective efforts and achievements.
As the 27th Governor of the State, I offer you congratulations and gratitude on behalf of all Queenslanders.
You have made our entire community proud, as have those Queensland Greats who have gone before you.