Queen’s Birthday Awards – Jewish recipients

June 8, 2015 by J-Wire Staff
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A professor working in the field of clinical optometry has been awarded an AC and heads the list of Jewish recipients of the Queen’s Birthday Awards. J-Wire congratulates all of them…


Professor Nathan EFRON,  Southport Qld 4215

Professor Nathan Efron

Professor Nathan Efron

For eminent service to medicine in the field of clinical optometry, particularly to vision correction and corneal physiology, as an academic, researcher and author, to the treatment of juvenile diabetes, and through executive roles with national and international professional organisations.

Queensland University of Technology:

Research Professor, Anterior Eye Laboratory, Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation,  since 2006; Director, Research Domain School Optometry and Vision Science, 2008-2009; Leader, Vision Domain, Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation, 2008-2009.

University of Manchester:

Foundation Chair of Clinical Optometry, School of Optometry and Neuroscience, 1990-2005; Head, School of Optometry, 1992-1997.

Director, European Centre for Contact Lens Research (Eurolens Research), 1990-2005. Instrumental in development of the world’s first daily disposable contact lenses, mid-1990s.

Initiated ongoing series of annual international surveys of contact lens prescribing, mid-1990s.

Developed Efron Grading Scales for Contact Lens Complications’, since mid-1990s. Dean, Research, 2001-2004.

Dean, Undergraduate Studies, 1992-1995.

Chairman, Higher Degrees Committee, 2002-2004.

Chairman, Graduate School Council, 2001-2004.

University of Melbourne

Senior Lecturer,1983-1989; Foundation Life Member, Alumni Association, 1993; Foundation President, UK Branch, Alumni Association, 1993-1996.

Honorary Senior Visiting Fellow, City University, London, 1987-1988.

Professional organisations:

Vice-President, International Society for Contact Lens Research, current; Council Member, since 1986.

President, Australian College of Optometry (ACO), since 2012; Board Member, since 2011; Member, Board of Continuing Education, 1977-1989; Member, since 1977; Fellow, since 1989.

Member, Editorial Board, Clinical and Experimental Optometry, Optometry Australia, current; Associate Editor, 2007-2009.

Chairman, Board of Administration, National Vision Research Institute (part of ACO), 2011-2012; Board Member, since 2010.

Elected Member, General Optical Council, UK, 2002-2005; Appointed member, 1994-1998; Member, Education Committee, 1994-1998; Member, Audit Committee, 2002-2005; Member Disciplinary Committee, 2002-2005; Member, Contact Lens Committee, 2002 and 1997-1998.

Institutional Auditor and Specialist Subject Reviewer, Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education, UK, 2000-2005.

President, British Contact Lens Association, 1996-1997; Council member, 1992-1999.

President, Cornea and Contact Lens Society of Australia, 1980; Council Member, Victorian Chapter, 1978-1981.

Fellow, American Academy of Optometry; International Association of Contact Lens Educators; Cornea and Contact Lens Society of Australia; British Contact Lens Association; and Australian College of Optometry.

Research and Publications include:

Has published a number of books including:

‘Fundamental Contact Lens Knowledge: a practical guide’, 2008.

‘Optometry A-Z’, 2007.

‘Contact Lens Practice’, 2002 and 2010.

‘Contact Lens Complications’, 1999, 2004 and 2012.

‘Contact Lenses A-Z’, 2002.

‘The Cornea: its Examination in Contact Lens Practice’, 2001.

‘The International Contact Lens Year Book’, 1993, 1994 and 1995.

Has also published over 800 refereed papers, journal articles and conference papers

Recognition includes:

Kenneth W. Bell Medal, Corner and Contact Lens Society of Australia, 2015.

J Lloyd Hewett Award, Optometry Australia, 2013.

Glenn A Fry Award, American Academy of Optometry, 2010; Max Schapero Memorial Lecture Award, 2003.

Gold Medal, British Contact Lens Association, 2001; Dallos Award, 1992.

Peter Abel Award, German Contact Lens Association, 2000.

University Prize for Excellence in Teaching, University of Manchester, 1999.

Award for Distinguished Research on the Cornea and Contact Lens, College of Optometry, University of Houston, 1999.

Professor Nathan Efron told J-Wire that the historical list of those awarded an AC is brimful of household names. “Was quite surprised and truly humbled to find myself amongst them.”

He still has in his possession a letter written 45 years ago from the principal of Mt Scopus College, the late Alex Ranoschy, to his parents, which reads in part “Unless [Nathan] makes a more concerted effort, I doubt if he will be successful …”.

Professor Efron, who spent the first 35 years of his life in his home city of Melbourne added: “I guess I listened and made a more concerted effort” Professor Efron told J-Wire, following the announcement that he has been made a Companion in the General Division of the Order of Australia, which is the highest level in the Australian honours system (aside from the controversial Knights and Dames) He was given the award “for eminent service to medicine in the field of clinical optometry, particularly to vision correction and corneal physiology, as an academic, researcher and author, to the treatment of juvenile diabetes, and through executive roles with national and international professional organisations”.

Professor Efron is an expert in the field of contact lenses. When working in the UK in the 1990s, he was instrumental in developing the world’s first daily disposable contact lens. He has also developed new eye tests for assessing nerve damage in patients with diabetes, which are now being trialed around the world. Professor Efron is a prolific author, having published over scientific 800 articles and 16 books. He has been invited to speak at over 500 conferences in 42 countries throughout his career, and has won a number of major international research awards and prizes.

In a long and distinguished career in vision science, Professor Efron has worked at the Universities of Melbourne and New South Wales, City University (London) and the University of Manchester in the UK, and the University of California, Berkeley, USA. He is also currently a research professor at the Queensland University of Technology, president of the Australian College of Optometry and vice-president of the International Society for Contact Lens Research.

Known internationally in his field for wearing flamboyant artist bow ties, Professor Efron tells the story of how his late father Jack came to the rescue when the supply of these bow ties dried up in the 1990s. “My father was in the shmutter business, making ladies skirts, and when I bemoaned to him the fact that I could no longer source my favourite fashion item, he suspended skirt manufacture in his factory for two days and had all his staff make about 50 bow ties for me from colourful ladies skirt material. Since then I have been dazzling audiences around the world with these bow ties, and hopefully also with my scientific research!”




Thomas Stephan DERY, Paddington NSW 2021

For distinguished service to the not-for-profit sector, particularly to cancer research, through the development of corporate governance structures and major fundraising initiatives, to the performing arts, and to business.

Tom Dery

Tom Dery

Community organisations include:

Chairman, Australian Cancer Research Foundation, since 1999; Board Member, since 1993.

Board Member, Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute (former International Diabetes Institute), approx.1990-1995.

Member, Advisory Council, Asialink Centre, University of Melbourne, since 1992.

Member, Dean’s Advisory Council, Faculty of Arts and Social Science, University of New South Wales, current.

Chairman, Sydney Dance Company, 2004-2008; Board Member, 1997-2008.

Deputy Chairman and Board Member, Marketing Committee, Playbox Theatre Company in Melbourne, 1980s.

Board Member, Queenwood School for Girls, since 2010.

Business organisations include:

Worldwide Chairman, M&C Saatchi Agency Pty Ltd, since 2009; Executive Chairman and Founding Partner, Asia Pacific and United States, since 1995. Director, Communications Council (former Advertising Federation Australia), 2010-2013.

Chief Executive Officer, DDB Needham Melbourne Pty Ltd, 1993-1995.

Chairman, Jetset Travel, 2009-2013.

Director, Sydney Attractions Group (formerly Sydney Aquarium Ltd), circa 2000.

Tom Dery told J-Wire: “The first thing I thought of when I was advised of this award was of my late parents.
They arrived in Australia with nothing but hopes for  their only child.
It is, in part, to their credit I received this award.

I feel very proud of my Jewish heritage, and hope whatever kudos comes from receiving this award is reflected onto our community. It is great credit to this country that a Jewish immigrant can be so recognized.

I am thrilled for my family. My wife is a great support, and our children and grandchildren a wonderful source of joy – I hope they take pride in me receiving the honour.

For me this also marks a point in my career which allows reflection on where I have been so far, but more importantly where I go in the future to keep growing and hopefully, contributing.

Helen Elizabeth SILVER, Caulfield North Vic 3161

Helen Silver

Helen Silver

For distinguished service to public administration, particularly through innovation and whole-of-government coordination, to business and commerce, and to the community of Victoria.

Secretary, Department of Premier and Cabinet, Victoria, 2008-2013; Deputy Secretary, Policy and Cabinet, 2004-2006.

Deputy Secretary, Economic and Financial Policy, Department of Treasury and Finance, 2002-2004.

Executive Director, Rehabilitation and Compensation, WorkCover, 1999-2002.

First Assistant Commissioner, Productivity Commission, 1993-1999.

Chief General Manager, Workers Compensation, Allianz Insurance Group, since 2013.

General Manager, Government, Business and Private Banking, National Australia Bank, 2006-2008; Member, Business and Private Banking Executive.

Helen Silver told J-Wire: “I am very proud to receive this honour.” Helen Silver has served as Deputy Chair of the King David School Council.



David Sydney ABRAHAM, Kew Vic 3101

David Abraham

David Abraham

For significant service to the community through health and medical research, education, and corporate governance organisations.

Health and Medical Research:

Chair, Board of Directors, Human Variome Project International (HVPI).

Chair, Australian Health Service Alliance, 1999-2007.

Executive Director and Board Member, CASS Foundation, since 2000.


Chair, The Knox School, since 2010; Director, since 1984.

Chairman, Council of Ormond College, University of Melbourne, 9 years;

Director, Taylors Schools Limited, 25 years.

Inaugural Executive-in-Residence, Graduate School of Business and Law, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, 2011.


Chairman, The Liberty Group Consortium, County Court of Victoria Project.

Due Diligence Advisor, Vice-Chancellor’s Office, University of Melbourne, 2001-2012.

Chair, Sirius Telecommunications Limited, several years and Director, 2000-2006.

Chair, Thirteenth Beach Golf Links Limited, ‘no dates’.

Probity Advisor, Melbourne Cricket Ground Redevelopment Project, early 2000s.

Former Director, Ruyton Limited, ‘no dates’.

Chair, four syndicates, CEO Institute, since 1995.

Deputy Chair, Generation Victoria (statutory ‘seller’ corporation created under the Electricity Act), ‘for several years’.

Facilitator, Melbourne City Link Project, 1990s; Technology Park Docklands Project, 1990s – 2000s.

Commissioner, Nillumbik Shire Council Commission of Inquiry, Minister for Planning and Local Government, 1997-1998.

Lawyer, since late 1960s; Managing Partner, Price Brent Solicitors, 1989-1994; Accredited Mediator, current.

David Abraham told J-Wire: “This means a great deal to me as it is an acknowledgment of the work I have done.” He added that the organisation he is involved with had achieved NGO status with UNESCO and the World Health Organisation. “Not so easy to get financial assistance from our own government” he added.

Alan Isaacs

Alan Isaacs

Dr Alan ISAACS, Melbourne Vic 3000

For significant service to medical education, particularly in the field of ophthalmology, and to professional organisations. 

Alan Isaacs started his career as an optometrist but went on to qualify as a medical doctor before completing the necessary studies to become an ophthalmic surgeon.

A friend told J-Wire that Alan Isaacs has lectured ophthalmology to two generations of students. He holds the honour of being one of the first people to have made Melbourne’s CBD his home…decades before sit living became fashionable.



Henry LANZER, Vic

Henry Lanzer

Henry Lanzer

For significant service to the community, particularly through a range of educational, research and arts organisations, and to the law.

Member, Board of Governors, Mount Scopus Memorial College, 1988-2008; Treasurer, 1990-1996; Life Governor, since 1996.

President, Mount Scopus Memorial College Foundation, 1996-2014.

Director, Burnet Institute, 2008-2013; Member, Development Committee, 2000-2008.

Board Member, Tarrawarra Museum of Art, current.

Managing Partner, Arnold Bloch Leibler, since 1999; Partner, 1984-1999.

Honorary Solicitor: Australian Friends of Tel Aviv University and Caulfield Hebrew Congregation and Jewish Museum of Australia.


Mr Lanzer has been recognised “for significant service to the community, particularly through a range of educational, research and arts organisations, and to the law”.

The Order of Australia is the pre-eminent means by which Australia recognises the outstanding and meritorious service of its citizens.

Mr Lanzer said he is proud to receive the award and considered the award to also be an endorsement of the pre-eminence of Arnold Bloch Leibler and the calibre of the partners with whom he works and the clients for whom he is privileged to act.

“It’s a great honour to be personally recognised. I feel very fortunate that my role within the legal profession allows me to work with so many talented people. I am of course particularly proud of our firm and of the results we achieve for our clients and within the community.”

Arnold Bloch Leibler’s Senior Partner, Mark Leibler warmly congratulated Mr Lanzer,
“This award is a fitting endorsement of Henry’s outstanding abilities and contribution. Not only has he guided our firm as Managing Partner for many years, but importantly, he has made a significant contribution in a variety of roles in the Australian community. Henry is an exceptional individual. We are immensely proud of him and delighted that he has been recognised in this way.”

After joining Arnold Bloch Leibler over three decades ago, Mr Lanzer has led the firm as Managing Partner since 1999. He advises several public and large private companies and is held in high regard within the corporate world for his strategic and legal advice and commercial flair. Mr Lanzer has been a non-executive director of Premier Investments Limited and of The Just Group since 2008, and also a non-executive director of Thorney Opportunities Limited since 2013.

In addition to his legal and commercial work, Mr Lanzer has made a major contribution to a number of institutions, notably serving Mount Scopus Memorial College for over 25 years, first as College Treasurer (1988 to 1996) and then for 18 years as the President of the Mount Scopus Memorial College Foundation. He has also been a board member of the TarraWarra Museum of Art since its inception and was a director of the board of the Burnet Institute from 2008 to 2013. Mr Lanzer is also the Honorary Solicitor and advisor to a number of communal organisations.

Henry Lanzer told J-Wire: “I am very pleased to receive the award and to be personally recognised. I see the award as an endorsement of my firm and its partners (Arnold Bloch Leibler) and the very talented people with whom I work. I am most fortunate to have been involved with Mt. Scopus Memorial College over 25 years and the important place it has in our community is something of which I am extremely proud” he said.

Conjoint Professor Florence LEVY, Darling Point NSW 2027

For significant service to medical education through seminal contributions to child and adolescent psychology research.

Florence Levy

Florence Levy

Head, Child and Family East (CAFE- formerly the Avoca Clinic), and Sydney Children’s Community Health Centre; and Senior Staff Paediatric Psychiatrist, Prince of Wales Hospital and Sydney Children’s Hospital, South Eastern Sydney Local Health District, since 1989; Employee, since 1973.

University of New South Wales:

Conjoint Professor, School of Psychiatry, since 2004; Senior Researcher, Brain Sciences (cross-disciplinary research Institute), since 2005; Past Associate Professor, 1998.

Adjunct Professor, Curtin University, 2004-2007.

Adjunct PhD Supervisor, Macquarie University, current.

Working Party on Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), National Health and Medical Research Council, 1995-1996.

Founding Member, Stimulants Subcommittee, Medical Committee, NSW Ministry of Health.

Member, Review of Stimulant Prescribing, NSW Clinical Excellence Commission, 2006-2007; Member, Special Review Committee, ADHD in Children and Adolescents, 2007; ‘Involved in the development of clinical guidelines for the treatment of ADHD in children and adolescents, since 1990′.

Member, Stimulant Medication Review Panel, WA Department of Health, 1990-1999.

Author or co-author, Approximately, ’75 papers (since 1990), 89 peer refereed medical journal articles, 3 books and 20 book chapters’.

Member, Training Committee, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, New South Wales Institute of Psychiatry, current.

Professor Levy said that it was a great honour to be the recipient of an award. She believes it should be seen a tribute to the team of people she has worked with over the years.

“It is also important that Australia gets recognition for the work we do” she said.

Professor Levy said she would celebrate with her colleagues.

Karen MAHLAB, Windsor Vic 3181

Karen Mahlab

Karen Mahlab

For significant service to the community through support for the not-for-profit sector and contributions to philanthropic initiatives.

Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Pro Bono Australia, since 1999.

Chief Executive Officer, Mahlab Group, 1989-2012.

Trustee, National Council of Jewish Women (Victoria) Foundation, more than 10 years; Patron, 80th Birthday Celebrations, National Council of Jewish Women of Australia (Victoria), 2008 and Board Member, 2008-2012.

Member, Victorian Leadership Council, The Funding Network, since 2013.

Ambassador, Australian Communities Foundation (formerly the Melbourne Community Foundation), since 2012; Board Member, 2002-2012; Chair, MacroMelbourne Initiative, 2006-2011; Chair, Grants Committee, 2010-2012.

Board Member, Reichstein Foundation, 2015.

Ms Mahlab told J-Wire she is excited and honoured to receive her award.

“I have been given an award for something I absolutely love doing so it is the cherry on the cake” she said adding that the 80,000 members of Pro Bono Australia would be informed by newsletter.

“For many years I have been working across the eco-system of community, not-for-profit, social enterprise and impact investment.

“I hope people are aware of the work of Pro Bono. I want to change the world for the better.”


Mr Morris Zoltan SCHWARTZ, Carlton Vic 3053

Morry Schwartz

Morry Schwartz

For significant service to the print media industry as a publisher, and to the community through promoting Australian political and intellectual discourse.

Director, Black Inc, since 2001; includes: ‘The Quarterly Essay’, since 2001; ‘The Monthly Magazine’ (includes Slow TV – internet content), since 2005 and the ‘The Saturday Paper’, since 2014.

Director, Bookman Press, circa 1990s-2001.

Chairman and Director, Schwartz Media Pty Ltd, since 2000; Schwartz Publishing Pty Ltd , circa 1980-2000.

Co-Founder and Director, Outback Press, 1973-1980.

Chairman and Owner, Pan Urban Corporation, since circa 2000; founder and Director, (online real estate), thehomepage.com.au, since 2009; and Millionplus.com.au, since 2009.

Founding Executive Member, Olivia Newton John Cancer Centre Appeal, since 2002.

Chairman, Australian Film Institute, 2006-2011; Inaugurated the development of the ‘Young Filmmakers International Scholarship’ in 2006, and the ‘Profession Development Program’.

Member, Humanities Research Centre Advisory Board, Australian National University, 2004-2007.

Morry Schwartz told J-Wire: “Whereas the personal recognition is appreciated this award is not just for me but also for an amazing publishing team which works with me.”


Mr Anthony Jona TATE, Mount Lawley WA 6050

Tony Tate

Tony Tate

For significant service to the community through senior roles in peak Jewish welfare, advocacy and sporting organisations, and to tertiary education.

President, Jewish Community Council of Western Australia, 2009-2013; Vice-President, 2007-2009.

Chairperson, Maccabean Magazine, since 2014.

President, Maccabi Western Australia, 1991-1992, 1982-1984; a range of executive positions, 1969-1995; Chairperson, Hall of Fame Selection Panel, 2012-2013, 2008-2009; Inducted into Hall of Fame, 2009; Representative in a range of sports at Australian Maccabi Carnivals, since 1964; Member, since 1966.

Trustee, Western Australia Maccabi Trust, 1997-2003 and Honorary Life Member since 1987.

Vice-President, Executive Council of Australian Jewry, 2009-2013; President, Jewish Community Security Group, since 2013.

President, Maccabi Australia, 1994-1995; Vice-President, 1991-1993, 1989, 1984-1985, 1979-1982; Honorary Historian, 1998-2000; Member, 1981-2000.

Vice-President, Maccabi Australia Federation, 1989-1990, 1979-1982; Publicity Officer, 1981-1982; Member, Organising Committee, Maccabiah Games, Israel, 1985; Selector, Lawn Bowls, Maccabiah Games, Israel, 1997, 1993.

Vice-Chairperson, World Maccabi Union, 1994-1995; Executive Committee Member, 1991-1993; Australian Delegate, 1990-2000; Chairperson, Constitutional Sub-Committee, 1989-1990.

Member, Joint Distribution Committee (Jewish humanitarian assistance organisation), since 2013.

Tony Tate told J-Wire: “I find it particularly pleasing that this award acknowledges both my personal and professional achievements.”


Heloise Racheal WAISLITZ, South Melbourne Vic 3205

Heloise Waislitz

Heloise Waislitz

For significant service to the community through charitable and philanthropic support in the areas of health and social welfare.

Chairperson, Pratt Philanthropy, which includes the Pratt Foundation and Visy Cares, since 1995.

Chair, Pratt Foundation, since 1995, during this time the Foundation’s donations include:

In 2005 the Pratt Foundation agreed to provide a gift to establish the Centre for Women’s Mental Health (CWMH) at The Royal Women’s Hospital, Victoria.

In 2007, Mrs Waislitz asked the Pratt Foundation to provide funds to supplement initial National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) funding to the Schizophrenia Research Institute to complete a ‘brain bank’ of 2000 schizophrenia sufferers.

In 2000 at Mrs Waislitz’s request the Pratt Foundation commissioned the Department of Psychiatry at Monash University to develop a five-year program of clinical treatment, research and training for psychotherapists to assist teenagers with psychosis.

In 2002 the Pratt Foundation in response to a submission from the Robert Rose Foundation and Independence Australia Services agreed to fund a range of support services for paraplegics, quadriplegics and carers with funding for counselling and psychology services.

The Pratt Foundation sponsors the Global Poverty Project and Mrs Waislitz delivered a speech at their concert in Central Park, New York in 2012.

The Pratt Foundation was a sponsor of The Wilderness Society Australia Incorporated.

Visy Cares works with local, state and federal governments to establish Visy Care Centres in areas of great social and economic need which are then owned by the local community.




Dr Philip Laurence BLISS,  Hawthorn East Vic 3123

For service to the community through Jewish and multi-faith organisations.

Dr Philip Bliss

Dr Philip Bliss

President, Progressive Judaism Victoria,(PJV) 2009-2012; Established, Centre for Living Judaism; Board Member, Bet Olam Funeral Services, an all-inclusive Jewish funeral service, 2009-2012.

Chairman, Council of Christians and Jews (Victoria), current, Treasurer since approx 2006; Executive Member, including Secretary and Minute Secretary 2003; Convenor, Executive Functions/Programs Committee; Israel Tour organiser, 2010.

President, Jewish Community Council of Victoria (JCCV), 1998-2000.

President, Leo Baeck Centre for Progressive Judaism, 1991-1993; Co-opted to executive, 1988; Vice-President, 1989; Management Board Member, 1986; Chair, Special Events Committee, 1986.

President, Australian, Asian and New Zealand Union for Progressive Judaism,(AANZUP) 1994-1998; Vice Chairman, (UPJ), since 2000; Deputy President, 1992 – 1994.

Vice Chairman; World Union for Progressive Judaism (WUPJ), since 2000; Honorary Secretary; Chairman, Social Justice and Advocacy Committee, since 2000; Member Management Committee and Executive Member, since 1995.

Involved as Chairman or Vice-Chairman, United Israel Appeal (UIA), ‘for last 25 years’.

Recognition includes:

Recipient, Award for Leadership, World Union  for Progressive Judaism, 2002.

Recipient, ASKAN fundraising Award, United Israel Appeal, 2010.

Recipient, VATIK Award, AANZUPJ, 2005.

Philip Bliss told J-Wire: “As a little boy from the London suburb of Willesden emigrating to Australia reaching this point would have been the furthest thing from my mind.AT this stage I am very proud to have achieved this recognition.”


Sandra Madeleine DUDAKOV, Toorak Vic 3142

Sandra Dudakov

Sandra Dudakov

For service to the community of Malvern through charitable organisations.

Vice-President, FareShare, since 2009; Kitchen Volunteer and Board Member, since 2002.

Board Member, Jewish Aid Australia, 2002-2006.

Volunteer, Abbotsford Salvation Army Store, since 2001.

Board Member and Volunteer, Malvern Citizen’s Advice Bureau, approximately 13 years.

Volunteer Area Co-ordinator, Malvern Meals on Wheels, no dates.

Recipient, Premier’s Volunteering Leadership Award, 2009.

Sandra Dudakov told J-Wire: “It’s wonderful and most unexpected. I am totally overwhelmed”.

“It is a credit to FareShare and the way we make such good use of unwanted food. We started off small and have grown to a service providing 25,000 meals a week with 7000 volunteers.

To make a difference to those in need is all the motivation I need” said Ms Dudakov.


John Gregory FOREMAN, St Kilda Vic 3182

John Foreman

John Foreman

For service to the performing arts, particularly as a musical event director and musician.

Musical Director, Carols by Candlelight, Vision Australia, since 2003.

Creative Director, Opening Ceremony, Asia-Pacific Special Olympics, 2013; Hosts Fundraising Dinners, several years; Ambassador, since 2011.

Song Writer, for Vanessa Amorosi, Closing Ceremony, Commonwealth Games, Manchester, 2002 on behalf of 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games.

Writer, ‘The Flame’, performed by Tina Arena, Sydney Summer Olympics Opening Ceremony, Sydney Olympic Games, 2000.

Musical Director, TV Week Logie Awards, many years.

Musical Director and Mentor, Young Talent Time, 2013; Australian Idol, Network Ten, 2003 – 2008

Board Member, Talent Development Project, current.

A range of roles including host, soloist performer, Schools Spectacular, since 1986.

Ambassador, Musics Count Us In Campaign, Australian Music Council, since 2007.


Music Director, Oprah Winfrey Show Australian Finale, 2010; Good Morning Australia with Bert Newton, 1992 – 2004.

Has worked with many musicians, song writers and composers including, Burt Bacharach, Chris Isaak, Reba McEntire, James Galway and Shirley Bassey.

Music Director, Singin’ in the Rain (2013); The Boy from Oz (2010); Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, (2009); Sweet Charity (2007); Hello Dolly (2002); Anything Goes (2001), for The Production Company.

Host, The Big Night In with John Foreman, 2005.

John Foreman found the experience of being awarded an OAM “surreal”. He told J-Wire: :How fortunate I am to be an Australian”.


Henrietta HARDY, Bellevue Hill NSW 2023

Henrietta-HardyFor service to the community through volunteer roles with Jewish organisations.

Involved in establishing the B’nai B’rith Bargain Bazaar (an Opportunity Shop), 1977 (for many years served on the shop’s management committee, also served as the treasurer, continued to work in the shop until 2009, and currently volunteers twice a month).

Vice-President, B’nai B’rith Australian District, 2 years.

President, Sydney Women’s Chapter, 4 years; Member, since circa 1960’s

Coordinated morning tea concerts, Montefiore Home for the Aged, ‘many years’.

Member, B’nai B’rith Centre Committee, ‘no dates’.

Supporter, B’nai B’rith Sydney Lodge Charitable Trust, ‘many years’.

Former President, Parents and Friends of the Hillel Talmud Torah (provided after hours Jewish education for school children).

Member, Central Synagogue Ladies Auxiliary, circa 1960s-1990s, served as Treasurer.

Treasurer, South Head Synagogue Ladies Auxiliary, circa 1950-1960.

Henrietta Hardy told J-Wire: “This is all new to me. I am absolutely surprised and honoured. I had no idea this was going to happen but it is very nice to be appreciated.


Wilhelm LERMER, Elsternwick Vic 3185

Wilhelm Lermer

Wilhelm Lermer

For service to the community, particularly through the Jewish Holocaust Centre.

Jewish Holocaust Centre:

Educational Guide, since 1994.

Archive translation from German to English, many years.

Board member, many years.

Recognition includes:

Special Service as a Volunteer, City of Glen Eira, 2006.

Wilhelm Lermer told J-Wire that he looked quizzically at the envelope he received from Government House. He said: “I was a little concerned as I had done nothing wrong but you can imagine my surprise when I opened it and was excited to learn I had been honoured with this award. I have been in Australia for 65 years and this means so very much  to me.”


Gregory Zalman LEVINE, South Melbourne Vic 3205

For service to the law and the judiciary, to children, and to professional legal organisations.

Greg Levine

Greg Levine

Inaugural Presiding Magistrate, Family Drug Treatment Court of Victoria; Chair, Steering Committee, since 2012.

Magistrate, Children’s Court of Victoria, 2002-2013; Senior Magistrate, Head of Children’s Court, 1990-1995; Co-Founder, Koori Children’s Court, 2007.

Head, Sunshine Court, 1998-2002.

Magistrate, since 1986.

Barrister and Solicitor, 1970-1978.

Churchill Fellow, 2011.

President, Association of Australian Magistrates, 2010-2012; Vice-President, Victoria, 2002-2010.

President, Victorian Magistrates Association, 1999-2003.

Mentor, Law Students, La Trobe University, 2004-2011 and Member, Legal Profession Consultative Committee, 1994-2000.

Executive Member, Council of Magistrates, 2004-2006.

Victorian Member, International Commission of Jurists, 1999-2005.

Member, Victorian Child Death Review Committee, 1995-2000.


Sarah SaaroniSarah SAARONI,  Hawthorn Vic 3122

For service to the community, particularly through the promotion of tolerance and diversity.

Guide and survivor speaker, Jewish Holocaust Centre, Melbourne, since 1989.

Survivor speaker at schools throughout Victoria, B’nai B’rith Courage to Care (Victoria), over 8 years.

Author autobiography ‘Life Goes on Regardless’, Hudson Publishing, 1989.

Sculptor, for many years.

Sarah Saaroni feels it is a “big honour” to receive her award and believes she is “lucky to live in a country where people are judged by what they do and not for who they are”.

As Monday is also her birthday, she is excited to be sharing the special news with her family.

She recently finished writing the second volume of her autobiography covering her many experiences post World War II.


Eva SLONIM, Caulfield Vic 3161

Eva Slonim

Eva Slonim

For service to the community through Jewish cultural groups.

Volunteer and Benefactor, Jewish Holocaust Museum and Research Centre, Melbourne, since 1984.

Volunteer, ‘Courage to Care’ program, Anti-Defamation League, B’nai B’rith, Victoria, since 1992; has been involved since 1949.

Member of a range of organisations including: Bnei Akiva Youth Movement; Melbourne Jewish Burial Society (Melbourne Chevra Kadisha); Leibler Yavneh College; Mizrachi Organisation; and United Israel Appeal, Victoria.

Undertook the role of Survivor, March of the Living Program, 2004 (a 3-kilometre walk from Auschwitz to Birkenau, a silent tribute to all victims of the Holocaust).

Author, ‘Gazing at the Stars: memories of a child survivor’, 2014.

Eva Slonim said she was overwhelmed.

“I came here in 1948 as an independent refugee . To be awarded an honour by this country which has given me so much is very meaningful to me” she said.

She is looking forward to contacting her family on Monday and asking them to check the paper, after which she plans to invite them over for a l’chaim.

Eva Slonim intends asking one of her many grandchildren to help her write a speech for the occasion.

When asked her about her experience on the March of the Living Program, she said she had found it a very moving and emotion experience, especially talking to the young people she met.


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