The Queen’s Birthday 2021 Honours List has recognised 1,190 Australians for their exceptional achievements or outstanding service to their communities and the nation.
One of Hollywood’s highest-paid actors, Chris Hemsworth, was on the list of award recipients. He was given the Member of the Order of Australia (AM) award for his “significant service” to the performing arts and charities.
This year’s list also includes a record proportion of women, who received 44 percent of the awards, including Peta Credlin, who served as the Chief of Staff to former Prime Minister Tony Abbott and is now a reporter for SkyNews.
“It is truly an honour. Thank you all for your kind words and well wishes. I am truly blessed,” Credlin wrote in a post on Twitter.
Credlin was appointed the second highest honours, an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO), for “distinguished service to parliament and politics, to policy development, and to the executive function of government.”
Governor-General David Hurley said he was pleased that the list included the highest percentage of women and believed it was important that the awards represented Australia’s “diversity and strength.”
“For this to happen, we need to ensure outstanding women, members of our multicultural community and First Nations people are nominated by their peers in the community,” Hurley said. “I am prioritising increasing awareness of and engagement with the Order of Australia amongst groups that have been historically underrepresented.”
“We are seeing positive progress, and I am determined that it continues.”
However, Honour A Woman co-founder Ruth McGowan wrote in a post on Twitter that 44 percent was “not good enough” and said men “still outnumbered” women at every level.
New Companions of the Order of Australia
Five Australians were given the highest honours, the Companion of the Order of Australia (AC) award, including outgoing DFAT Secretary Frances Adamson, Archbishop Phillip Aspinall, Tasmania’s governor-designate Barbara Baker, geophysics researcher Professor Kurt Lambeck, and Director of the Australian Ballet David McAllister.
Adamson was awarded for her service to public administration through the advancement of Australia’s diplomatic, trade and cultural interests, “particularly with the People’s Republic of China and the Indo-Pacific region.”
While Aspinall was awarded for his service to the Anglican Church of Australia and to the development of ecumenical relationships and professional standards.
Baker was awarded for her service to the people of Tasmania through her contributions to the law, particularly family law and Lambeck for his eminent contribution to science through his research that has formed a basis of GPS technology used in agriculture, resource exploration, and smartphone navigation.
McAllister was appointed for his service towards the performing arts, both nationally and internationally.