The Australian of the Year Awards

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Tracey Ferrier
(Australian Associated Press)



– The Australian of the Year Awards were born in 1960

– The Young Australian of the Year Award was added in 1979, the Senior Australian Award in 1999 and the Local Hero Award in 2003


– Everyday Australians are asked to nominate someone who makes them proud

– Australian citizens aged 16 and over are eligible, except for sitting state and federal politicians

– Nominees are shortlisted in their relevant state or territory and a panel selects winners in each award category

– State and territory winners are then considered for the national awards

– The National Australia Day Council board selects the national recipients

– The awards are announced on Australia Day eve in Canberra


– A key consideration is the achievements of nominees over the previous year

– Past achievements and ongoing contributions to Australia are also considered

– The awards aim to recognise Australia’s diversity, and a wide field of endeavours

– Research suggests Australians want the awards to recognise people who’ve had positive impacts on the lives of others, or those who have changed society for the better

– Australians also desire winners whose challenges and triumphs extend beyond their career achievements


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