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Recipient profiles - 2021-2022

Maria Alexiadis OAM - for service to karate

"As honoured as I am to receive an award, I’m not a talker as such. I am someone who simply sees what needs to be done and does it.”

Hashim Abdul Rahman OAM - for service to the multicultural community of the Australian Capital Territory.

“The award I received isn’t just mine, I would like to share it with everyone who helped me along the way.

Coralie Amos OAM - for service to the community through a range of roles.

"Initially I didn't believe it because I just work in the community, I enjoy it - I love doing what I do. When it all sunk in I was elated."

Professor Emily Banks AM - For significant service to medical research and education.

“I think what’s really important is to recognise that public health works on a very large scale - it’s not the sort of thing you can do on your own. It only works if the community takes action and in that way, it is the ultimate team sport. The recognition that I have received is really recognition of what the community has achieved.”

Kerrin Benson AM - for significant service to the multicultural community and to refugee settlement.

“Those who migrated here, even second-generation migrants, they don’t always feel a sense of belonging. Receiving one of these awards as recognition for their contribution to Australia is an extraordinary way for Australia to say that ‘we’re really grateful for you.’”

Regula Black OAM - for service to veterans and their families.

“I do what I do because I enjoy it and I love being in the community – it’s just stunning to me that someone appreciates the work.”

Beny Aterdit Bol OAM - for service to youth.

"I find it very satisfying to have the opportunity to represent the voices of more than 70,000 members of the African community in Queensland and the broader multicultural community at the tables where key policies are initiated and developed and where decisions are made on matters of significance to the community." 

Sarah Brown AM - for significant service to community health, to remote area nursing, and to the Indigenous community. 

“I think it is really important that stories that don’t usually get light on them, get told. And that people understand what a diverse, and creative and resilient country we are.”

Mr Lee Christofis AM - for significant service to the performing arts, particularly to dance.

"All of us know people who work quietly in the community, who care about the welfare of others and who give selflessly."

Peter Crisp OAM - for service to the creative arts, particularly as a glass sculptor.

"Above all now having being a recipient, I understand and appreciate how important it is - it endorses what you do, in my case 40 years as an artist. This award has acknowledged that and encourages me to look around at peers and nominate."

Radmila Desic AM - for significant service to women in the construction industry, and to unemployed youth.

"This award has re-energised me and built confidence that I’m on the right path. If there’s anyone that you recognise as worthy, you should definitely put the time and effort in to nominating them. It is lifechanging and uplifting.”

Angel Dixon OAM - for service to people with a disability, and to social inclusion

“In those tough times, when you’re battling inequities and it’s really hard, it’s nice to know you’ve been recognised and it keeps me going. If you believe in someone’s work, you should nominate them. It can only amplify their message and help the work they do”.

Reginald Dodd OAM - For service to the Indigenous community of Maree

"I was surprised and honoured that people nominated me out of respect for what I have achieved. You don't expect to be awarded for what you do but I appreciate the nomination”

Kerrie Ford OAM - For service to community history

“I don’t do what I do for recognition. I do it because I love it and because we have a unique opportunity to increase people’s appreciation and enjoyment of our early Australian pottery heritage.”

Ngatuaine Hosking OAM - For service to the multicultural community of Victoria

“Really surprised because I wasn’t expecting it. I am just working at the grass root level with the hope of connecting, empowering and supporting the community."

Wendy Johnson AM - for significant service to secondary education in South Australia.

"Being recognised through the Order of Australia is not something that should easily be given away. It has to be earned."

Kathryn MacKenzie OAM - for service to tourism in regional Victoria.

“A job is more than a job – it’s about changing people’s lives. That’s why I encourage anyone to nominate someone for an Order of Australia Award – we need to recognise those people who haven’t been recognised in the past for the work they do."

Phong Nguyen OAM - for service to the Vietnamese community.

“Genuine and “fair dinkum” heroes are the ones who never think of themselves or do things to be recognised or praised. It’s, therefore, up to us who know them to nominate.”

Marie-Louise Pearson OAM - for service to the community through a range of organisations

“I have a life of helping where I can, to me it is very normal, and for me it is just what I do.”

Desley Rial OAM - for service to the community of the Capricorn Coast

“I have to say, with all honesty, that the day I opened the letter telling me I had been awarded the Order of Australia Medal for my achievements, would without question be the ultimate highlight of my life.”

Scott Saddler AM - for significant service to public administration, and as a supporter and mentor of Indigenous youth.

"There's amazing work been done across Australia in remote areas ... the community need to band together and say to this particular person 'you should be recognised.' "

Anthony Swan OAM - for service to the Sri Lankan community of Queensland.

“These are things you don’t expect, you just work with the community, I don’t do what I do for awards or accolades. This award goes to all of us community workers”.

Shantelle Thompson OAM - for service to the Indigenous community of Victoria

“To know that someone has seen the work I have done and to nominate me for much a prestigious honour – it was really humbling. I also found it really empowering to know that the work I am doing is valued and I can continue to do that work.”

Bexon Whang OAM - for service to veterans of the Korean War.

“My wife is proud that I received this award. Her friends were interested in why I received an OAM - she proudly responded, my husband is a Korean War veteran who has dedicated his life to the relationship between Australian and Korean veterans.”