Of the 993 recipients of awards in the General Division of the Order of Australia in this years Queen’s Birthday Honours List, four have called East Gippsland home.
Bairnsdale’ s Derek Amos and Bruthen’ s Margaret Greenwood have been named among the latest list of those to receive Medal (OAM) of the Order of Australia in the General Division, as have the late Audrey Light, of Orbost, and former Orbost resident, Clare Gray.
Derek Amos was honoured with an OAM for service to community mental health. He is the co-founder of Barrier Breakers, former chief executive officer, is immediate past chairman and a current director.
He was Member for Morwell in the Victorian Parilaiment from 1970-1981; Party Spokesman on Minerals and Energy, 19731981; Party Spokesman on State Development, 1971-1973; and is a former chair, Victorian Parliamentary Public Works Committee.
Mr Amos was Latrobe Valley Young Labor president from 1967-1970 and a former City of Latrobe councillor.
Margaret Greenwood has received her OAM for service to the community of East Gippsland.
She has been a member of the Bruthen Lions Club since circa 2000; was a member of the Australian Red Cross Victorian Division from the 1940s to 2000s; was a member of the Bruthen and District Community Planning Group, Bruthen and District Citizens Association, East Gippsland Shire Council, 2010s; is a former secretary of the Bruthen Senior Citizens; was secretary and zone representative, Bairnsdale Neighbourhood Watch, 19912009; is a former secretary of 12 years of ‘Save our Train’ Group, Bairnsdale; former secretary Noojee Baby Health Centre; and Life Governor, Warragul Hospital, 1948.
Mrs Greenwood received a Certificate of Appreciation for service to the East Gippsland Neighbourhood Watch from Victoria Police in 2009 and is a recipient of a Meritorious Service Award for involvement with the search for a five-year-old boy at Mt Toorongo from Australian Red Cross in 1972.
The late Audrey Light received her posthumous OAM for service to the community through social welfare organisations.
Mrs Light was a volunteer with the Salvation Army in Orbost from the 1970s-1990s and was a volunteer wit the Salvos’ Op Shop in Orbost. She was also a volunteer with Meals on Wheels and the Orbost Op Shop.
Mrs Light received a certificate of appreciation from League of Mercy, Australia Southern Territory, Salvation Army, in 1989.
Former Orbost resident, Clare Gray, now of Bell Post Hill, received her OAM for service to community health.
Mrs Gray was founder of Stroke Association of Victoria and has since held many roles including honorary secretary, president and board member for 34 years.
She has assisted in the establishment of numerous stroke support groups in the Geelong area, STROKIDZ at the Royal Children’ s Hospital, Melbourne, and has been heavily involved in many other stroke associated endeavours.
Mrs Gray has been involved in Young Women’s Christian Association at state and national levels.
She is a life member of the Stroke Association of Victoria and YWCA and is a recipient of the Victorian Premier’s Volunteer Champion Award.
“On behalf of all Australians I congratulate today’s recipients,” the Governor-General and Chancellor of the Order of Australia, His Excellency General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC (Retd), said.
“They have made an enormous contribution to their local communities and to the entire nation and deserve our thanks, admiration and to be celebrated.”
“These awards are our opportunity to say to fellow Australians, ‘thank you – without you and your tireless service we wouldn’t be the community or nation that we are’.
“Some names on today’s list are well known. Many more are known only to those they help and serve day-in-day-out. They are all wonderful people and are all worthy of recognition and celebration.
“This is the greatest part of our system; it doesn’t matter who you are, where you are from or whether you’re known to millions or just a few. If you have constantly put others ahead of yourself, served tirelessly and made a difference you can be nominated and recognised by a grateful nation.
“I encourage all Australians, if ever you see someone with an Order of Australia lapel badge, or see an Order of Australia post nominal after their name, to recognise that the person is extraordinary and has served their community and nation.
“And if, in doing so, you think of someone you know that is similar then consider nominating them for an award so that they too can be celebrated.”
“It is great that the overall number of nominations and upward trend of Australian women being acknowledged through the Honours system continues to grow. We would all welcome higher recognition of magnificent Australian women.”