Innovation leaders recognised in Australia Day 2024 honours

Brandon How

Former CSIRO chair Catherine Livingstone and recently appointed CSIRO director Professor Roy Green have been recognised on the Australia Day Honours List for their contributions to science and technology.

The honours list has also highlighted the service of 49 Australians who supported the country’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic alongside the many other researchers, educators, and business people whose contributions are being celebrated.

University of Technology Sydney emeritus Professor Roy Green has been made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for significant services to business and to tertiary education in the fields of science, technology and innovation.

Reacting to the honour, Professor Green told that he is proud to have “fought on behalf of all of those who work to make Australia more resilient and diverse knowledge-based economy, and especially those engaged in the task of building a world leading research and innovation system”.

He deferred from self-praise, instead describing the honour as a “recognition of everyone’s efforts and I’m pleased to have played my part”.

When asked to reflect on his proudest achievement during his decades long career, Professor Green said it was difficult to single out just one. He is the current chair of the Port of Newcastle and the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing (ARM) Hub.

Professor Green’s past contributions to innovation include his service on the expert group supporting the National Innovation Summit between 1998 and 2000, his review of Australia’s textile, clothing, and footwear industries in 2008, and his report on the national innovation system for a Senate inquiry in 2015.

He has served in multiple national and state government advisory roles over the years, including a stint on the research funding board for Enterprise Ireland between 2003 and 2005. A prolific board appointee, he was most recently appointed to the board of the national science agency at the start of December.

Meanwhile, former CSIRO chair Ms Livingstone has been made a Companion of the Order of Australia (CA) for eminent service to business, particularly through governance and strategic reform, tertiary education, science, technology and innovation capability development, and the arts.

Ms Livingstone’s contributions to innovation included her service on the 2008 panel that undertook a review of the national innovation system and as a member of the federal government’s Growth Centres advisory committee between 2015 and 2022.

Ms Livingstone is currently the chief executive of the Business Council of Australia and the chancellor of the University of Technology Sydney. Also prolific in her board service, she was the chair of the CSIRO between 2001 and 2006, as well as the Commonwealth Bank of Australia between 2017 and 2022.

The top of the COVID-19 honour roll is Professor Julie-Anne Leask, who was made an officer of the Australian order for distinguished service to health and medical research, to policy advice, and to enhancing community understanding of immunisation.

Other CA’s were made to Emeritus Professor David Boger for his eminent service to chemical engineering as a scientist, academic and researcher, particularly in the field of non-Newtonian fluid mechanics, and to the environment, as well as to University of Queensland vice-chancellor Professor Deborah Terry for eminent service to tertiary education.

There were also AM honours for Pawsey Supercomputer Research Centre chief executive Mark Stickells, Turner Institute for Brain and Mental Health director Kim Cornish, and former chief research scientist at CSIRO Manufacturing Dr John Ramshaw, which he served in between 1980 and 2017.

Overall, there were 739 recipients of awards in the general division of the Order of Australia out of a total 1,042. For the second year running, the majority of recipients in the general division were women. The remaining awards were made in recognition of military service and achievement in the public service.

Governor General David Hurley congratulated the 2024 recipients of Australia Day honours and recognised their impact across local, national, and international communities.

“Recipients come from all parts of the country.  They have served and had an impact in just about every field you can imagine; their stories and backgrounds are diverse. We value their service, thank them for their hard work and selflessness and, today, celebrate them,” Mr Hurley said.

“To each recipient: know that you have the thanks and respect of your nation. In my experience most are humble and often try to deflect attention or praise – please enjoy the moment because your country has decided that you deserve recognition.”

Do you know more? Contact James Riley via Email.

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