An Aussie Rules footballer, an anti-bullying advocate, a dancer, a medical researcher, neonatal specialist, community leader and a singer-songwriter are the eight Australians shortlisted for the Australian of the Year Award for 2014.
The finalists also include two Indigenous Australians, a former Chinese dissident, and a German and Irish migrant – the latter of whom came for three years and has stayed for 40. Three women are amongst the finalists.
The state and territory nominees in the Australian of the Year Awards were announced yesterday by the CEO of the National Australia Day Council, Jeremy Lasek and CEO of the Commonwealth Bank, Ian Narev.
The eight finalists are:
- ACT: Associate Professor Zsuzsoka Kecskes, age 48 – neonatal specialist (pictured with her son, Thomas)
- NSW: Adam Goodes, age 33 – football player and community leader
- NT: Shellie Morris, age 48 – singer-songwriter
- Qld: Li Cunxin, age 52 – director of Queensland Ballet
- SA: Dr Felicity-ann Lewis, age 57 – community leader
- Tasmania: Professor Tom McMeekin AO, age 69 – food microbiologist
- Victoria: John Caldwell, age 36 – anti-bullying advocate
- WA: Professor Bruce Robinson AM, age 63 – researcher into asbestos-related cancers
The finalists are nominated by the public as individuals worth of recognition for their achievements and contributions.
“These are people every Australian can be proud of,” said Mr Lasek.
“All the finalists are helping to make a better Australia, a better life for others and a better future for us all.”
In addition to the eight finalists for the Australian of the Year, the finalists were also announced for the Senior Australian of the Year, Young Australian of the Year and the Local Hero.
The Australian of the Year Awards will be held on the lawns outside Parliament House, Canberra, on 25th January next year. The Commonwealth Bank has sponsored the awards for 30 years.
Nominees in the other categories can be found at AustralianoftheYear.org.au
The 2013 winner was Ita Buttrose.