2019 Australia Day Ambassadors

Published on 10 January 2019

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2019 Australia Day Ambassadors

Media Release

Gannawarra Shire Council is pleased to announce it will be hosting four Australia Day Ambassadors in 2019.

The Australia Day Ambassador Program provides high achieving Australians to over 300 community celebrations across the country each Australia Day.

Mayor Lorraine Learmonth said it will be an honour to welcome Professor Bruce Bonyhady AM, Damian Brown, Aris Imbardelli and Alma Besserdin to the Gannawarra Shire.

“Myself and fellow councillors look forward to welcoming Bruce, Damian, Aris and Alma to Australia Day celebrations in Kerang, Lalbert, Cohuna, Leitchville and Quambatook,” Mayor Learmonth said.

Professor Bruce Bonyhady AM, who will be the guest speaker at the Quambatook Australia Day event, is one of the key architects of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). In the 2010 Queen's Birthday Honours, Professor Bonyhady was awarded the honour of Member of the Order of Australia for services to people with disabilities, their families and carers, and to the community as a contributor to a range of charitable organisations.

Mr. Damian Brown, who will be speaking at the Kerang Australia Day event, is an inspiring personality with outstanding sporting success, representing Australia in weightlifting at three Olympic Games and four Commonwealth Games (winning four gold, one silver and three bronze medals), and competing in 12 consecutive World Championships (a World Record). Mr. Brown has also had remarkable business success as a business Director, Chairman and Executive Board Member.

Aris Imbardelli has had a long career at the RACV Club and will be speaking at the Lalbert event. Mr. Imbardelli will speak on what it means to be Australian, the importance of acknowledging our national responsibility as individuals and to not bask in our inherited good fortune so we can leave a better Australia for those that will follow us.

Alma Besserdin, who will speak at the Cohuna and Leitchville events, is the Founder and Director of Wimmigrants Pty Ltd. Having to deal with the challenges of immigration herself, Ms. Besserdin’s vision is to help other professional women immigrants achieve their professional careers, integrate in Australian society and become leaders in their workplace and community.

“Each community hosts fantastic Australia Day events and I am sure the Ambassadors will enjoy their stay in Gannawarra,” said Mayor Learmonth.

The Australia Day Ambassador Program is coordinated by Australia Day Councils and Committees in each state and territory.

For more information on Australia Day celebrations across the Gannawarra Shire, please visitwww.gsc.vic.gov.au